Earlier this week, Adam Yauch Park – a playground in Brooklyn dedicated to the late, great member of the Beastie Boys, otherwise known as MCA – was vandalized with spray-painted swastikas and pro-Trump graffiti.
The scrawlings were quickly covered up, but they were hardly forgotten, and the Beastie Boys called on fans and local politicians to gather at the site of the incident on Sunday (November 20) to overpower that hateful message with one of love, acceptance, and inclusiveness.
Hundreds of people turned out – and several with Beastie Boys-inspired signs (” NO SLEEP TIL NO HATE IN BROOKLYN,” for one) – including Jim James of My Morning Jacket and Ben Stiller, who brought his young daughter, Ella, to the rally.
Adam Horovitz, a.k.a. Ad-Rock, got on the megaphone, and pointed out that his longtime collaborator, who passed away in 2012, embraced and encouraged non-violent rhetoric in life and in his art.
“Spray painting swastikas in a children’s playground is a messed-up thing to do,” he told the crowd. “And for many of us, it has special meaning, because this park is named for Adam Yauch, who was my friend and bandmate for over 30 years. But he was also someone who taught non-violence in his music, in his life-to all of us, and to me. But this is more about someone in our community linking Nazi Germany to Donald Trump in a ‘hell yeah’ kind of way in a park where children play.”
After encouraging the crowd to take peaceful action through activism, protests, and donations, the gathering closed with a singalong of ” This Land Was Made For You And Me.”