Soon on "Law & Order:" NYPD Hate Crimes Task Force Takes "The Face of Hate" Into Custody
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I’m sure we’ll be seeing this storyline, suitably punched up, on Dick Wolf’s upcoming Law & Order: Hate Crimes. Granted, the part where the crack NYPD Hate Crimes Task Force has to release the chalk graffiti artist to his mom because he’s only 12 is kind of lame, but I’ll bet the writers’ room will have lots of ideas about how to write around that.

From Deadline last September:

As Law & Order: SVU is heading into its record-tying 20th season, NBC is expanding the Law & Order franchise with a 13-episode order to Law & Order: Hate Crimes, from Law & Order boss Dick Wolf.

Co-created with one of Wolf’s top lieutenants, former Law & Order: SVU showrunner Warren Leight, the latest Law & Order installment is based on New York’s actual Hate Crimes Task Force, the second oldest bias-based task force in the U.S. The unit, which pledges to uphold a zero tolerance policy against discrimination of any kind, works under the NYPD’s real Special Victims Unit and often borrows SVU’s detectives to assist in their investigations. …

Law & Order: Hate Crimes is set in New York City, where crimes motivated by discrimination are vigorously investigated by an elite, specially trained team of investigators. Going behind the headlines and viral videos, these diverse, dedicated and passionate detectives will stop at nothing to bring these criminals to justice.

“As with all of my crime shows, I want to depict what’s really going on in our cities and shine a light on the wide-ranging victims and show that justice can prevail,” Wolf said. “Twenty years ago when SVU began, very few people felt comfortable coming forward and reporting these crimes, but when you bring the stories into people’s living rooms – with characters as empathetic as Olivia Benson – a real dialogue can begin. That’s what I hope we can do with this new show in a world where hate crimes have reached an egregious level.”

Added Leight, “I’m extremely impressed by the actual men and women investigating these cases in a city as complicated and diverse as New York. The work they are doing puts them on the front lines in a battle for the soul of our city and nation. I’m thrilled about the chance to reunite with Dick and NBC to portray the reality of this crisis.”

… There have been multiple attempts by the broadcast networks to launch a series in the past few years about the workings of a hate crimes unit, including one that went to pilot at CBS last year, untitled Jenny Lumet drama.

Hey, Dick, here’s the perfect casting for The Face of Hate, This kid is probably about 12 by now:

Perhaps the culprit is an Ashkenazi child with good taste who doesn’t appreciate the Bukharians of Rego Park? From Failed Architecture:

New York’s Worst Architecture – The Bukharian House

Ross Wolfe nominates a set of Central Asian mammoth mansions in Queens as New York’s worst architecture.

“Look, architecture is over,” declared longtime New York resident Kevin Walsh in 2008, in response to an article the Gothamist ran on new zoning laws in Forest Hills, Queens. Walsh, founder of the local nostalgia website Forgotten New York, was objecting to some of the remodeling efforts being undertaken by the wave of Bukharian Jewish immigrants that began flooding the neighborhood earlier in the decade. Driven from their adoptive homelands in Central Asia by the collapse of the USSR, forced out of backwater republics with basket-case economies such as Uzbekistan or Tajikistan, many of them now pulled up stakes and practically airlifted into Queens. Unfortunately for the borough’s more “indigenous” (i.e., Ashkenazic) Jewish inhabitants, their Mizrahi cousins brought with them their culture’s bizarre building habits and aesthetic preferences. …

Extravagant though they may have been at times, the old mock Tudor houses once dominant here now pale before the unbridled grandiosity of the Bukharian homes being built. All the conventional virtues of the Elizabethan home Muthesius celebrated a century before in his study of Das englische Haus are thus flouted, shattering any prior sense of proportion or typological uniformity. Rather than sturdy half-timbered façades and steeply pitched roofs, pale pink marble slabs made from imported Jerusalem Stone surrounded by tacky chromed-out fences and shiny metal gates. Instead of manicured gardens, no gardens. Just paved lots, devoid of greenery, onto which they stack storey after storey in order to maximize occupancy – usually in large families – over limited square footage.

For Failed Architecture’s category of “worst architecture,” then, I choose to nominate a whole class of problematic buildings rather than a single infamous building. New York has its fair share of bad architecture, but these are the worst.

I dunno. This could be worse. It’s massive like Blenheim Palace, but it does have a certain amount of articulation. In contrast, there’s a recent 3 story house near me in the San Fernando Valley that’s just a giant rectangular solid taking up the entire lot. I presume it was built by a West or Central Asian clan to squeeze in as many relatives as possible.

The city councilman asked for suggestions and I proposed some rules for quantifying “articulation” that his staff liked, and recent construction has been less atrocious. The above house isn’t as bad as the one that set off this tiff.

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