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  #1    
Old April 4th, 2013, 01:19 AM
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So, in the UK, attacks against people from the emo or goth sub-cultures are now considered 'hate crimes'. Which raised the question with me, really, why do we actually have hate crimes, and why do they tend to carry different sentences to other crimes? Why is a crime not simply a crime in every instance? Why should the crime be different if it's driven by prejudice rather than something else?

Discuss!

Clearly, I don't know a great amount about this topic, but I do know it makes an interesting discussion. So off to Wikipedia I go!
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Old April 4th, 2013, 01:50 AM
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I think we have hate crimes because we live in a society which still believes that everyone should be normal. When people express themselves differently, they get harassed just because of their differences.

It really is quite depressing; being peer pressured into being 'normal' is discomforting to me, and I'm not part of any minority at all.
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Old April 4th, 2013, 02:59 AM
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I think "Hate Crime" status is necessary in order to offer additional deterrent of persecution of a group in extreme danger of violence, and prevent extremely unstable malcontents from seeking out members of that group to harm.

No one should ever have to fear for themselves because they're different. Personally I think a crime should be a "Hate" crime if it can be proven that perpetrator did it because the victim is/was uncommonly different from them. I.E, Being of a different race, creed, nationality, origin, religion, gender, Sexual Orientation, Gender Expression, having different Medical needs, physical attributes, mental capabilities, or anything like that.

If it can be proven that a crime was driven or motivated by hatred or dislike of something protected, then yes, they deserve a slightly heavier sentence. People with stubborn or irrational hatred or dislike for something can be pretty dangerous, and even more so if they believe what they hate is evil or wrong. So just putting them in jail for the normal amount of time might not be effective. I think people like that shouldn't be released until they're good and ready to realize the misdeed they've committed. If they don't, they can sit in jail as long as it takes, within reason.

---

On the flipside, proving that a crime has been committed out of hatred is like trying to hold water in your hands. It's tricky. Generally speaking, unless you've got Audio, Video or written proof of someone basically admitting their hatred...you don't really have a solid case. It becomes a bunch of "He said"/"She Said" unless you can gather enough credible witnesses, and even then it can be difficult.

It's essentially difficult to prove outright without hard evidence of the type which is difficult to legally obtain in a fashion that wouldn't be thrown out of court.
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Old April 4th, 2013, 04:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Razor Leaf View Post
Clearly, I don't know a great amount about this topic, but I do know it makes an interesting discussion. So off to Wikipedia I go!
Pfffffffffffffffft

Anyway, I think it's just a classification you know? I mean it's not like anyone but the victim of a crime would think that one class should/must carry more weight than another! Personally I don't see a difference between hate/other crimes other than the motive, same as how the victim of any crime is equal to the victim of another (under similar circumstances of course).

But I do feel that classification is necessary! I mean under different circumstances, it's important for the motive behind the crime to be clearly separated from other motives, what with all the prosecution and defense that takes place in the trial before conviction. If the jury doesn't have a system based on which they can determine a verdict for each individual crime, well what would even be the point behind having a mindful jury?

My 2cents anyway~
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Old April 4th, 2013, 04:56 AM
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I don't particularly like the idea. The crime is the crime, who it was committed against shouldn't make the scenario worse than it would be in another circumstance.

EDIT: Oops, mega typo. Shouldn't. Not should :X
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Old April 4th, 2013, 09:30 AM
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You can look at crimes either case-by-case or broadly. I think if you see things case-by-case you'd conclude that the only problems with the law are in terms of catching criminals, prosecuting them fairly, and just being efficient. If you look at things broadly I think you'd additionally see a need to address the fact that certain groups of people are disproportionately victims of crimes. Hate crimes laws are an attempt to address that by trying to dissuade people from committing crimes against certain stigmatized groups, essentially codifying into law that it's not okay to be prejudiced against these groups of people. Of course, the law often already states elsewhere that prejudice is bad, but it doesn't seem to be enough that our laws say "Everyone is equal" if that's not how things work in practice.

Personally, I don't have a problem with these laws. I know the biggest and most legitimate complaint against them is that it's not for the law to treat people differently, or that it's someone else's job to try to fix societal inequalities. I think that it's an attempt at the right thing though, an attempt to mitigate or balance the prejudice shown by a criminal with a dose of legal prejudice back at them. I do believe that some crimes wouldn't happen if not for the belief in some people that it's "okay" or "not as bad" to commit certain crimes against certain people. That belief, I feel, is already wrong, already unfair and unequal, but since you can't punish someone for a belief alone you've got to wait until they act on it.
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Old April 4th, 2013, 10:22 AM
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You can look at crimes either case-by-case or broadly. I think if you see things case-by-case you'd conclude that the only problems with the law are in terms of catching criminals, prosecuting them fairly, and just being efficient. If you look at things broadly I think you'd additionally see a need to address the fact that certain groups of people are disproportionately victims of crimes. Hate crimes laws are an attempt to address that by trying to dissuade people from committing crimes against certain stigmatized groups, essentially codifying into law that it's not okay to be prejudiced against these groups of people. Of course, the law often already states elsewhere that prejudice is bad, but it doesn't seem to be enough that our laws say "Everyone is equal" if that's not how things work in practice.
Stigmatized group or not, with murder I'd think that there'd be some element of hate involved. I don't see how the extra classification would only apply to certain groups.

Or that if the victim may be part of some minority, that that automatically implies that the crime committed was a hate crime. That's not necessarily so either.

When things don't make sense, I don't them. XD
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Old April 4th, 2013, 02:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TRIFORCE89 View Post
I don't particularly like the idea. The crime is the crime, who it was committed against should make the scenario worse than it would be in another circumstance.
Distinctions are made in law all the time. Take murder, for instance. There are several classes of murders in the law, ranging from first-degree murder to manslaughter. The end result is the same, a person's life is taken violently, but the punishment for the murderer is different depending on the charge laid.

The same is true with hate crimes designations. The difference between simple assault and assault with hate crime enhancement, is that the simple assault is directed towards a person for a personal reason, where as an assault with hate crime enhancement is directed towards a person and the community that person belongs to. It's a statement by the perpetrator to others who share the same characteristics with the person they're assaulting that they could be next. Hate crimes designations actually, if you really look at it closely, resembles a form of terrorism, because a hate crime is meant to specifically instil fear in a community of people.
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Old April 4th, 2013, 04:36 PM
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No one should be singled out because they're different.

Why do we say everyone is special and everyone is included, when in reality, society won't really accept you unless you are part of the majority? It really is sad.

Bullying is very similar to hate crime. It's just a more mediocre and drawn out way to commit a hate crime.

I haven't witnessed hate crime, but I witness lots of bullying and teasing and stuff like that.

Take the adult out of hate crime and replace him with a kid. Then it is bullying.

Either way it's a huge issue.

Just get along kiddos.
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Old April 4th, 2013, 06:17 PM
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Hate crimes designations actually, if you really look at it closely, resembles a form of terrorism, because a hate crime is meant to specifically instil fear in a community of people.
In that sense, sure I'll go along with that. A group thing.

But there are instances where crimes solely against an individual are labelled a hate crime. Where someone has been killed, but that the person responsible did not know the person was gay. But because he was gay, it becomes a hate crime.

That's very very dangerous territory if we're treating certain types of people as more important in the eyes of the law.
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Old April 4th, 2013, 06:42 PM
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Originally Posted by TRIFORCE89 View Post
But there are instances where crimes solely against an individual are labelled a hate crime. Where someone has been killed, but that the person responsible did not know the person was gay. But because he was gay, it becomes a hate crime.

That's very very dangerous territory if we're treating certain types of people as more important in the eyes of the law.
That's not the purpose of hate crimes laws. Anyone trying to apply them that way is doing it wrong. They aren't meant to make certain groups of people more important under the law, but to state that certain motivating factors for committing crimes are extra reprehensible and more deserving of punishment.

I mean, if you've got two murders and one was done out of a personal issue (jealousy, let's say) and one where the murderer just didn't like that the person was black (or gay, or whatever) then you've got two different types of criminals. One of them is more dangerous, I would say, because their anger/trigger isn't limited to one person or one circumstance, but to a whole segment of society. They're more likely to cause more harm.
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Old April 5th, 2013, 12:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TRIFORCE89 View Post
In that sense, sure I'll go along with that. A group thing.

But there are instances where crimes solely against an individual are labelled a hate crime. Where someone has been killed, but that the person responsible did not know the person was gay. But because he was gay, it becomes a hate crime.

That's very very dangerous territory if we're treating certain types of people as more important in the eyes of the law.
A victim does not have to be gay for hate crimes laws to apply. For example, there was one instance in the U.S. where two Ecuadoran immigrant brothers, named Jose Sucuzhañay, 31, and Romel Sucuzhañay, were walking home arm-in-arm after a night of drinking in the Bushwick neighborhood of Brooklyn were attacked because they were perceived to be gay. Anti-Hispanic slurs were also used during the assault. The attackers were described as four black men riding in a burgundy sport utility vehicle. One attacker jumped out of the SUV, used the anti-gay slur, then smashed Jose over the head with a bottle. As Romel ran away, three other men exited the vehicle and joined the assault, police said. One hit the victim in the head with a bat while the others kicked him. At some point, Romel returned holding a cell phone and told the men he had called police. They then drove off together. Jose subsequently died from his injuries. Law enforcement official declared the attack a hate crime.

Do you think they were wrong to call it a hate crime? I certainly do.

Here's an article of the incident: Family Keeps Vigil for Beaten Brooklyn Man

Also, the purpose of hate crimes laws is not to place one individual, or group of people, above others, but rather to treat acts of violence against specific groups because of who they are as being especially heinous.
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Old April 5th, 2013, 04:11 AM
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I know they don't have to be gay. But I wanted an example that wasn't a visible minority.
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Old April 5th, 2013, 06:17 PM
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Hate crime laws should only come into play if it can be proved beyond a reasonable doubt that a crime was motivated by some sort of cultural bigotry (or whatever you call it). They're applied far too liberally currently. They're fine in theory, but in practice, prosecutors abuse them to inflate their numbers.
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Old April 5th, 2013, 06:55 PM
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I think hate crime laws are good for weeding out the bottom feeders in society. Even if you were an extreme racist, if you were an intelligent one, you wouldn't be out and about committing hate crimes. I doubt we the people have much to lose from hate crimes being in existence. We would be ridding society of ignorance one idiot at a time. Not the most efficient, but would we rather them be on the streets?
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Old April 5th, 2013, 07:55 PM
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So... more to the topic Razor Leaf actually proposed... how goes "goth" and "emo" come into play here? They're sub-cultures I guess, but they're more like world views I guess? And clothing decisions XD Not really how I would image this normally being applied
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