Signs promoting diversity burned in Allentown

Sep 21, 2017

Two lawn signs that featured messages of inclusion were set on fire in Buffalo's Allentown neighborhood late Tuesday night.

The incidents happened on Mariner Street, one at home of Johanna Dominguez. Dominguez was in bed when she smelled smoke around 11:25 p.m. When she looked out her window, she realized the smoke was coming from her porch and that her sign was on fire. She was able to put out the fire using water from a gardening can.

The sign was set on fire in front of Johanna Dominguez's house Tuesday night.
Credit Facebook

Dominguez's sign included messages in support of women's rights, diversity and Black Lives Matter, among other topics. The final words on it were "Kindness is everything. Love is love."

"My sign wasn't a sign that said anything negative and then someone felt the need to destroy it for a message that is very beautiful. It definitely felt like a huge violation of my property, privacy, and personal space," Dominguez told WBFO.

The other sign that was set on fire had a pro-immigrant message, saying "No matter where you're from, we are glad you're our neighbor" in different languages.

Dominguez,  who describes herself as an activist, says a neighbor's surveillance camera captured the incident and police are investigating. She says she has received an outpouring of support from friends and neighbors and says she will soon put up a new sign in the old one's place.

The original sign
Credit Facebook

"A lot of neighbors want to put up the same sign in solidarity," said Dominguez. "So far, the support has been great."

What would Dominguez want to say to the person who did it?

"I would like to question him and ask him why he felt the need to do that and see why the sign offended him and try to change his mind about feeling negative towards it."