2006_03_slashing.jpgThe police are saying that a box cutting attack on three Asian men may have been racially motivated. The NY Times reports that three men were heading into the Gramercy Restaurant at 184 Third Avenue (at 17th Street) around 4:30AM when they were greeted with the racial slur for Chinese people (we assume "chink") as well as "mock karate moves" by two Hispanic men on the sidewalk. Then, when the Asian men left the restaurant at 5:15AM, the two men, plus a friend, attacked them , with one of the men slashing them ("one in the face, one in the neck and one in the back"). The victims' injuires were minor, but the police have not been able to find the attackers. Now, Gramercy would be considered one of the safer neighborhoods in the Manhattan, but at 4:30AM, anything goes, we guess. But there is something sadly A Clockwork Orange about these recent stories - Imette St. Guillen's murder, the killing of Edwin Hammond for his cellphone by 13 year-olds. And the Times got a "this stuff doesn't happen in this 'hood" quote from someone who lives upstairs from the restaurant: "I eat here all the time, like three times a week. If it wasn't safe, I wouldn't live here."

And the trial of Nicholas Minucci, one of the men who beat up a black man with a baseball bat last summer in Queens, is still underway.