INQUIRER: An Obama supporter in New Jersey woke up Thursday morning to discover the remnants of a cross burning on his front lawn. Wrapped around the charred 6-foot cross was a scorched homemade banner congratulating president-elect Obama on his victory. State police are calling the incident a bias crime. Gary Grewal, 51, of Hardwick Township, Warren County, was taking his daughter to work at 7:30 a.m. when he spotted the remains of the cross. “I saw this thing in my front yard,” Grewal said. “I didn’t know what it was.” Draped over the fallen cross, made of 2-by-4s and a metal sign post, was a banner reading “President Obama Victory 08” his wife Anlina had fashioned Tuesday night from an old bed sheet. Gary Grewal, who is of Indian descent, said he wasn’t taking the incident personally. “Sure, something like this hurts you,” he said. “But I don’t want to be intimidated. Who’s anyone to tell me how to think and behave.” MORE
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RELATED: Six stock clerks from the School District of Philadelphia picked up four donated couches, three desks, a book-shelf, a microwave and boxes of office supplies from an Obama campaign office at 1500 Sansom St. this morning. Mike Bowens and his co-workers said they would transport the leftover infrastructure from Obama’s historic victory to a school district warehouse, where the furniture and supplies would be doled out to schools across the city. “It’s great,” said Bowens. “The schools here can really use this stuff.” This was the fourth Obama office in Philadelphia to donate to the city schools.
The donations began after the Obama campaign contacted iloveschools.com, a national non-profit organization based in San Diego that helps teachers find equipment, materials and supplies their school districts may not be able to afford. Valerie Swanson, marketing director for iloveschools.com, said a specific focus of the national Obama campaign was to give back and donate office supplies and other materials to schools. “Tens-of-thousands of supplies have been donated in two days to various schools across the country,” Swanson said. “We were very excited to reach out and give such a large number of supplies to schools in need.” A total of 14 Obama campaign offices in Philadelphia have pledged to donate supplies, she said. About 200 campaign offices across the country have pledged donations in 12 states, including Texas, Indiana and Oregon. MORE