Skip to comments.Are hate crimes any worse than others?
Posted on 05/17/2009 3:16:34 AM PDT by MartinaMisc
LEGISLATION pending before Congress would dramatically expand the federal hate-crimes law, and a number of critics are concerned that the bill goes too far. Perhaps the real problem is that it doesn't go far enough.
Under current law, crimes motivated by bias against a victim's race, color, religion, or national origin can be prosecuted by the federal government, so long as the victim had been engaged in a "federally-protected activity" - attending a public school, for example, or being in a place of public accommodation or entertainment. The proposed Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes Prevention Act, which passed the House last month and is pending in the Senate, would significantly broaden the federal government's reach.
The bill, named for a gay college student beaten to death in Wyoming in 1998, would add four new categories of hate crimes to the federal code: those committed because of someone's sex, sexual orientation, gender (or transgender) identity, and disability. It would eliminate the prerequisite of a "federally-protected activity" and require instead only the loosest connection to interstate commerce. And the proposed legislation would make it far easier for defendants acquitted in state court to be retried at the federal level - a circumvention of the Fifth Amendment's protection against double jeopardy that has prompted four members of the US Civil Rights Commission to publicly oppose the bill.
If enacted, the law will almost certainly be challenged in court. The Constitution does not grant the federal government any general police power - prosecuting crime is primarily a state and local responsibility - and it is far from clear that the Supreme Court would go along with a congressional attempt to federalize such a broad swath of criminal law.
(Excerpt) Read more at boston.com ...
How can you pass legislation that punishes a person based on how he/she felt at the time of the crime? That is why the standard of law should be: “What did this person do that was a harm to others or himself, and was that behavior against the law?” Period.
Congress is so out of control it is unbelievable. Everyone one of them, except those who are for limited Federal government, needs to be voted out of office. Then we vote in people who understand how to govern our country.
Yoo mus’ be racis’...
Hate Crime = Thought Crime
Are hate crimes any worse than others?
The basic truth is all crime is nurtured by hate.
A Husband kills his wife and kids.At some point he loved them.How could he now kill them unless the opposite was true,he now hates them.
The bank robber hates that everyone has more then he does and his hate tells him the easy way to change that is to rob a bank.
The current HATE CRIME laws are not about crime reduction or about law.They are about re-eduction of the poeple to moralities that previosly were unacceptable to society.Hate Crimes laws are Politic Laws not Crime Laws...
Then we vote in people who understand how to govern our country.
There seems to be a great deal of confusion among the voting public, as to how to govern our country.
Hitler would have been proud.
Yes. Which pretty much discounts liberals and many Republicans. The ones we need to get out of there are the ones whose motto is, “My Utopia is better than your Utopia, and just watch how much money I can spend to reach my Utopia.”
Congress is a very inept group of people.
Hate crime equals thought crime.
Orwell was a prophet of sorts.
I am very afraid.
> How can you pass legislation that punishes a person based on how he/she felt at the time of the crime?
That’s easy, and the Courts do it all the time. Establishing “intent” makes the difference between Manslaughter and Murder.
NOTE: I’m not in favor of Hate Crime legislation. I’m merely answering your question.
Congress is a very inept group of people.
You are too kind, considering the fact that Barney and Chris should be indicted for abject stupidity, as well as gross malfeasance in office, but I love your tag line.
“Intent” is not a feeling. It is a choice, an intention. Big difference.
YES........ if you are accused of committing one.
Fleas can be taught nearly anything that a Congressman can.
Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself.
Congressman is the trivialist distinction for a full grown man. -
All Congresses and Parliaments have a kindly feeling for idiots, and a compassion for them, on account of personal experience and heredity.
- Mark Twain
> Intent is not a feeling. It is a choice, an intention. Big difference.
I don’t understand how the distinction your making is conceptually different. Can you please explain?
No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.
It sure seems they are creating a "non-equal" class of citizens with this legislation. Where are they protecting citizens to peaceably practice their religion?
nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb
Will this be used on the type of thugs that beat up reginald denny after the rodney king arrest? Nooooo... They will use it on a little old lady that mutters something under her breath to a TSA “employee” at your local airport, who says “Whut u call me?”. Or the man who accidentally runs over a jaywalker and because it was on the southside...
Do you know what I am thinking right now? Could you prove what I am thinking right now in any conceivable manner in a court of law?