Tuesday, August 21, 2007


FRC: Hate crimes laws are unconstitutional

The Family Research Council says hate crimes laws are unconstitutional (and I agree):

"In a move that is a direct violation of the 14th Amendment which affords equal protection under the law, the House of Representatives passed a 'hate crimes' measure that would grant certain victims of crimes allegedly motivated by bias--greater protection than other victims of violence. The measure passed by a vote of 237 to 180. ...

"Criminalizing thoughts as well as actions, and creating special categories of victims is unconstitutional. The actions of a majority of the House today undermine the promise of equal protection under the law guaranteed by the 14th Amendment. This legislation creates second-class victims and a legal system of 'separate and unequal.'

"There has been no proof that violent crimes perpetrated against any of the groups listed in the bill have not been prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, yet now Congress is asking the federal government to get involved in issues that are, and should remain, local concerns.

"By far the most disturbing threat we face by this legislation - is the threat it poses to free speech and our religious liberties. In some jurisdictions that have adopted similar laws, 'hate crimes' have been defined to include not just physical acts of violence but merely verbal ones as well. When 'thought crimes' laws are interpreted this way, they pose a serious threat to freedom of speech and religious liberty."

The FRC's Peter Sprigg penned an op-ed which appeared in the Washington Times a couple of weeks ago that's well worth checking out. It's hard to argue with this:

"[T]he principle engraved on the Supreme Court building is 'Equal Justice Under Law.' Creating special classes of victims would violate that principle. That's why senators should reject the 'hate crimes' bill."

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