No offense intended, whatever anyone might perceive 'Spade' to connote.
I can accept 'terrorism', because there's not an implication of a victimized oppressed minority in the word. In fact, isn't it usually a minority that commits acts of terrorism?
If race, creed, sexual preference and all the other group-oriented crimes are lumped in with the bombing of civilian busses, and a defined set of penalties are established for the perpetrator, then fine - I'll support that law. But if a majority, or regionally predominant group, is penalized differently when commiting crimes against one group than when commiting the same crime against another group, then The Law is not equitable, and does not 'afford equal protection'.
Say a white robber muggs a black man... Say he calls his victim a 'nigger' in the process - is he a racist? Is this a 'hate crime'? Or is he just trying to upset and intimidate the victim? What if the same criminal robs a woman, and calls her a 'bitch' or 'whore'? Is he suddenly a misogynist? What if he robs a man whom he calls a 'faggot'? Is the nature of the crime different, depending on whether or not the victim is or isn't actually a homosexual?
And if this criminal is in fact prejudiced against one of these groups? Is the act of mugging somehow different? Can it be conclusively proven that the victim was singled out based on their belonging to a group the criminal hates? Or were they simply attacked because they were likely to have a wallet?
When a Synagogue is burned, it's a hate-crime. When a Protestant Church is torched, it's arson. When the Moose Lodge burns it's because some drunk left the barbeque lit. When Mamma Mia's Pizza goes up in flames then it's insurance fraud - why is that? Isn't that in itself prejudice?
When racial slurs, or group oriented specifics are used in a crime, it is usually to intimidate. Yes, having "Nigger Die!" painted on the front door of a black family's home is more upsetting to the residents than if the family were white. Is it less of a crime if the vandal tagged the wrong house? Is sending a Clown Telegram to the house of someone with an extreme fear of clowns also a hate crime, albeit one directed an an extremely small and misunderstood minority?
I'm not really trying to ridicule the issue, it's a serious problem and I realize it - as a Polish immigrant and geek, I've had more experience with prejudice and ridicule than most white-bread Protestant males. What I *am* trying to do is to question where the lines are actually drawn, because it seems too arbitrary, and done purely for the sake of political correctness.
The incidents of crimes against individuals, when motivated by nothing more than skin color or sexual preference, are unfortunate and rooted in ignorance. (Then again, a Klansman might accuse me of ignorance for not seeing the 'obvious deficiency of the Black, Jew, Oriental, gay, whatever'... or however they phrase it) But does the dragging or beating death of one individual deserve a more stern punishment than an identical death of another individual; based solely on how broadly or narrowly the hate that caused the crime is focused?
I hereby declare myself a minority of one, and any hostility against me should therefore be interpreted as a hate-crime.
|"Is K5 my kapusta intellectual teddy bear?"|
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