Clifton, Maine is a beautiful and tiny community along the Airline Road about 25 miles east of Brewer and Bangor.
Like so much of central and eastern Maine, Clifton is poor and very isolated. And like most rural and poor parts of Maine you will find people of all political stripes living there. One of the unpleasant truths about places like Clifton, Maine is the very high degree of racial bigotry which still exists. Below is one example:
Student from Maine expelled, charged with hate crimes
By The Associated Press
HAMDEN, Conn. — Quinnipiac University has expelled three white students after police charged them with making harassing phone calls to black players on the school’s men’s and women’s basketball teams.
Hamden police say they charged 18-year-old Charles Merritt of Clifton, Maine, with hate crimes after he made threatening and harassing phone calls that included racist remarks to three players on the men’s team on Monday.
Merritt, a freshman, was a roommate of two of the players and knew the third, police said. He was charged with three counts each of intimidation based on bigotry and bias, harassment and disorderly conduct.
Emily Loschiavo of West Newbury, Vt., and Courtney Stellwag of Newburgh, N.Y., both 19, are accused in a separate incident of making harassing calls to a resident assistant’s room at a Quinnipiac dorm on Tuesday night. They are charged with harassment.
The New Haven Register reported Thursday that the calls to the RA’s room were answered by two black players on the women’s basketball team who are friends with the resident assistant. Police said both players were threatened with bodily harm.
The three students who were arrested did not respond to e-mails seeking comment.
Hamden police Capt. Ronald Smith said the phone calls came several days after slurs were discovered on poster and cork boards outside the dorm rooms of the three players on the men’s team.
Smith said the written slurs included a racial epithet and a drawing of a Nazi swastika.