A pro-swastika banner flying over New York City and Long Island beaches this weekend has stirred outrage despite that it was intended to help change people's minds about what swastikas stand for.
According to The Associated Press, some beachgoers were appalled and officials fielded complaints after a plane toted the banner Saturday. The banner featured swastikas, a peace sign, a Star of David and a "pro-swastika" message.
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It was arranged by the International Raelian Movement. The group tries annually to remind people that before Adolf Hitler's rise, the swastika was an ancient symbol of well-being to Hindus and Buddhists, among others. The Raelians — who believe human beings were created by extraterrestrials — have faced controversy over similar swastika banners in summers past.
Some beachgoers say there's just no way to rehabilitate a symbol that provokes such strong feelings.
“Whenever I see a swastika, I think about white supremacy,” Cuauni Lee, 46, who saw the pro-swastika banner in the Rockaways, told the New York Post
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