We Need Hate Crime Legislation Essay

1849 Words 8 Pages
Hate crime is one of the biggest issues many people face today. Whether or not they should be legislated against has been highly debated and continues to be a hot topic. This essay will explain the ideas and opinions of several authors including Charley Reese, Michael Lieberman, Helen Dodge, Gregory S. Parks, Shayne E. Jones and Samuel Francis. It will also elaborate on the topic of why hate crimes should be legislated against, with supporting information. The phrase “hate crime” is generally referred to as a criminal act against a person, a group, or property because of one’s race, religion, gender, or sexual orientation (Civil Rights- Hate Crimes- Overview). A person who experiences a hate crime may be threatened, harassed, …show more content…
Reese feels that hate crime laws would allow the government to begin making strides toward no individual freedom. Thus, people would be told that they cannot “hate” a specific group of people and, therefore, invalidating the personal freedoms of the individual. In addition, Reese states that the First Amendment to the Constitution was not designed to protect safe or uncontroversial or politically correct speech or government approved speech (Reese 137). Author Michael Lieberman’s article, “Hate Crime Laws: Punishment to Fit the Crime”, discusses that violence is intentionally and specifically targeted at individuals because of their personal, and immutable characteristics (Lieberman 81). Based on this statement, it is obvious that when a person mumbles some racial slur under their breath, one can conclude that it is intentional and may lead to some type of confrontation. For example, an openly gay or lesbian student attending college is constantly being taunted and ridiculed because if his or her sexual orientation. Every time the student passes by a particular group of students, they yell out the words “queer” or “faggot”. Based on this example, it is evident that hate crimes do not occur by accident but that they are premeditated and well thought out in advance. Not only are hate crimes intentional, they are personal. They carry with them an emotional and

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