**Hail Ants **:“Hate speech is absolutely covered under free speech. And, no, it is absolutely not worth limiting the First Amendment to try and prevent so-called hate crimes.”
Hail, please explain to me exactly how hate crimes legislation imposes a limit on the First Amendment. I am all ears. Hint: the constitution does not protect your right to kill; and defining murder as “speech” is just a bit of a stretch.
Elucidator*"[Hate crimes legislation]assumes that a
crime is worse due to the state of mind of the perpetrator. A state of mind cannot possibly be proven! It is an utter
absurdity to pretend that it can."*
Say what? So you think the guys that beat and pratically crucified Matthew Shepherd didn’t choose him because he was gay? Or the guy last year who opened fire on a synagogue didn’t have anti-semitism on his mind? I’m sure, btw, that when there is plausible evidence to the contrary plain-old-garden-variety crucifiers and attempted massacrers won’t have to worry about the additional burden of hate crimes legislation.
As it happens, hate crimes legislation isn’t high on my list as I think we have a pretty punitive justice system without it. But I do find it interesting how threatened some (typically white, male, Christian and straight) people seem to be by the very concept. Here is Nimune (whose sex, race, etc. are unknown to me)
“So, eventually, we’ll be in a situation where if you kill a straight, white, male protestant, you effectivly get time off your sentence.”
Nimune, how seriously do you expect me to take this supposed eventuality? Surely you are aware that crimes perpetrated by blacks against whites are investigated, tried and punished more frequently and more rigorously than other crimes, particularly crimes by blacks on blacks.
Let me put it to you this way. If hate crimes legislation on the books deterred even one group of “rednecks” from targeting a gay or a black human being just to have some sick kicks, wouldn’t that be a good thing? And what would it really cost you unless, of course, you yourself plan to commit a hate crime in the future? If your answer is that you don’t like the preferential treatment, please take notice: our legal system is full of arbitrary disparities of all kinds. How else can you account for the fact that blacks are disproportionately incarcerated for the percentage of crimes they commit? How else can you explain the difference between the way that crimes committed by businesspeople, sometimes affecting hundreds of people or whole communities, are often punished less severely than petty theft?