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Rocklin community transforms racist graffiti into art to promote peace

"Spread Love, Not Hate" event brought community members to transform racist graffiti into messages of love.

ROCKLIN, Calif. — Members of the community in Rocklin felt the best way to erase hate is by spreading love. And that's exactly what they did on Saturday afternoon by writing messages of peace, love and solidarity.

The walkway in Sonora park looks drastically different than it did earlier in the week. Last Sunday, park visitors were greeted by racist graffiti written on the pathway separating the park from Rock Creek Elementary School. The graffiti consisted of words that are derogatory to the Black community.

Damion Saunders, one of Saturday's organizers, said he hopes that spreading kindness will bring the community together.

"Take hate messages and turn it into loves messages," Saunders said. "So we created this event, spread love not hate, to have the children come out and paint the sidewalk and bring the community together and let them know that racism will not be tolerated in the community."

Several dozen community members participated. Many were children who wrote messages like, "be kind." 

"I didn't believe that putting this together in short notice that this many people would show up," Saunders said. "It just goes to show that the community cares."

Rocklin Unified School District officials provided a written statement that says, in part, "The entire RUSD Community condemns any form of hate speech and we will do our part to ensure the Rocklin Police Department can bring justice to an unacceptable situation in our community."

ABC10 reached out to the Rocklin Police Department for comment, but have yet to heard back from them.

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