Man honored for cleaning swastikas off subway car in Manhattan, and spurring others to do the same

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N.J. Burkett has the story.

So what would you do if you saw hate-filled graffiti spray painted on your subway car?

One young man in Manhattan, who was repulsed by what he saw, jumped into action to clean up the car.

Then another person followed suit which spurred others to join in.

"It was literally right in my face," said Jared Nied, a subway rider.

Nied was stunned. Staring him in the face was a subway map, scrawled with anti-Semitic graffiti.

"The car was completely covered, I mean end to end," Nied said.

He couldn't look the other way, even if he wanted to. So Nied rallied the other riders and they went to work using hand sanitizer and tissues.

"We just started moving down the car, just erasing the hate, clearing it off," Nied said.

"If you could say anything to that person right now, what would you say?" Eyewitness News Reporter N.J. Burkett asked.

"Why, why would you do this?" Nied said.

But shocking as the graffiti was, Nied says he wasn't surprised.

"Shocked and disgusted and horrified, but not surprised, not now, not with where we are in America today," Nied said.

Wednesday night, Nied was honored by the Anti-Defamation League.

"To be that one in that moment to stand up and be the one that others follow, it's not the easiest thing and he did it," said Evan Bernstein, ADL Regional Director.

"See something, say something, but this is see something and..." Burkett said.

"Do something, absolutely, yeah," Nied said. "It did make me angry, but the overwhelming thing I felt was just sadness, sadness and hopelessness, is this what humanity has come to? You know, and five minutes later after the car was clean, I felt the exact opposite about humanity, I felt hopeful."

Not that it matters, but Nied is not Jewish. He just wanted to make sure the next rider didn't have to see what he did.

Related Topics:
newshate crimegraffitiswastikaanti-semitismgood samaritansubway crimeNew York City
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