Do you think there should be hate crime laws?

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Roman
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26 Mar 2012, 6:41 pm

androbot2084 wrote:
Hate crime laws put the offender on the defensive. If I tried to prosecute my Boss as a hate criminal for firing me because I was autistic my Boss would think of a million reasons that he fired me that had nothing to do with my autism.


The funny thing is that the bus might say "I have nothing against you having diagnosis with autism, I only dislike the fact that you were DOING item X. In your case, you were doing item X because of autism; but it doesn't matter, since I would fire anyone who does item X, whether it is due to autism or not. The act of doing item X disturbs others for such and such reasons, and thats why I fire anyone -- autistic or not -- who does X".

This by the way brings a good point. In order to single out people who "truly" hate autistics you have to literally find someone who hates the way the word "autism" sounds, and doesn't even care about any actual autistic behaviors. That would be quite silly wouldn't it. I guess probably it is being assumed that since racism is "wrong" you can't possibly arrive at "wrong" conclusion by means of logical thinking; thus, whatever "racist" conclusion you came up with should be entirely disconnected from anything else. In case of autism, you have to ''hallucinate'' a sign on a wall ''autism=bad'' without anything else that would prompt you to dislike any autistic behavior. This, in fact, would be the only way a clear line between "hate" and "other motives" can be drawn. A "hate" has to be something completely disconnected from other beliefs or experiences a person has, and should be something that a person merely "hallucinates" out of the blue. Now the logical steps that lead to above thinking are as follows:

A. Racism is wrong
B. In order to reach wrong conclusion you need to make logical fallacy
C. In order to make logical fallacy you have to make an assumption that is logically disconnected from everything else that you know
D. The place of "logical disconnect" will be the "line" between your "racist" views and all "other" views

Now, I claim that the mistake that they made was in part C. The "logical disconnect" is only one out of many different examples of faulty logic. Far more common example would be "false logical link". Thus, the racist belief of an individual IS in fact connected to ALL OTHER beliefs -- and a lot of the latter are "good" beliefs -- BUT "the connecting lines" between any given "racist" belief and any given "good" belief involve "false logical links" at some points along the way. Thus, we can identify these "false logical links" and use them as a definition of a "boundary" between a "region of racist beliefs" and a "region of good beliefs" a given person has. The only problem, however, is that in real life we are using fuzzy logic. Thus, most of the links most people make are "fuzzy" at least to some extend. So in order to properly draw the above stated line we would require some of the links in the racist' mind to be "significantly more fuzzy" than other links. But this might simply not be the case. And if all of the links a racist uses are equally fuzzy, then who is to say which beliefs are racist and which are not? Thus, there is no way of saying whether the idea of firing someone for the disractive behavior that simply HAPPENED to be the symptom of autism is, in fact, racism against autistics or not.

Also think of math test. A bad student would use false logical links to reach a wrong answer. If the person is capable of coming up with one wrong answer this is probably a good indication that they are capable of coming up with thousands of other wrong answers. So the concept of hate crime is like saying "a student who arrived at this specific wrong answer should lose a lot more points than the students arrived at other kinds of wrong answers". In real life, of course, wrong answer == crime == real life damage to someone. Hence, if "whatever it is you are thinking" lead you to commit a crime you go to jail; if "whatever it is you are thinking" lead you to get wrong answer on a test you lose points. The question of wheter or not your thinking falls within some special "forbidden territory" should be non-issue. In fact the very notion of "forbidden territory" teaches people NOT to think, thus making them more prone to having wrong answers.



abacacus
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26 Mar 2012, 7:31 pm

ruveyn wrote:
abacacus wrote:

The f***ing human rights tribunals... if there is any thing in this country that deserves to be targeted by terrorists, it's those ruddy human rights tribunals.

"Free speech? BUT HE'S OFFENDED GO TO JAIL AND PAY HIM A FORTUNE!"

f***ing ridiculous.


An angry Canadian? If so, there is hope.

You guys should have joined with the 13 colonies when they rebelled against the Crown.

ruveyn


Angry Canadian indeed. Free speech is something I hold very close to my heart, it is the corner stone of any free society.

Not being able to say something because it might offend somebody undermines the entire thing.


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LKL
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26 Mar 2012, 11:06 pm

Roman wrote:
LKL wrote:
ruveyn wrote:
Declension wrote:
I think that hate crime is a good concept. A lot of you seem to be saying that it can be difficult to know whether a crime is a hate crime. I agree, but that's not the point. The point is: if for some reason you are certain that a crime was a hate crime, does it deserve a more severe response?

I think that the answer is obviously "yes". Motive matters. If a criminal is mentally impaired, then the crime is not so terrible. If the criminal is fueled by bigotry, then the crime is more terrible. A lot of you are saying "a crime is a crime". That's nonsense! Are you saying that there should be no distinction between manslaughter and premeditated murder?


Why is a crime motivated by "hate" worse than a crime motivated by greed, anger or uncontrolled sexual lust?. Any wrongful act producing property damage, injury or death is actionable. Why tack on "hate" when doing a wrongful act intentionally is already a crime? The element that makes a wrong doing criminally punishable is mens rea (evil intent). That is sufficient. Adding the element of racial or religious bigotry is unnecessary. We already know the difference between right and wrong. Adding the element of bigotry to a wrongful act does not make it any more wrong.

ruveyn

Because it's motivated by, and targeted towards, not just the victim but anyone like the victim. It's a crime against an entire community, not just one person.


The same can be said about other crimes. A crime motivated by lust is a statement "women are merely a sex objects of men", thus it is against all women rather than just one woman. A crime motivated by greed is a statement "rich people have no need and they are obligated to help the poor, if they don't want to, they should be forced to". Again, this is against the entire group.

On a different note, if the racist is going to hurt someone because they are black, then the PHYSICAL damage is not against the entire group, only against one person who was black. The PSYCHOLOGICAL damage is what affects entire group. But if we are to worry about psychological damage, we would be forced to be consistent and introduce hate SPEECH laws as well. But, as others pointed out, this would lead to violations of free speech and so forth. On the other hand, if we are to allow the freedom of consciousness, we have to de-criminalize the whole concept of "psychological damage". Now since the PHYSICAL damage of the hate crime is committed against one person, this means that the argument that "it is against the entire group" does not fly.

There's a difference between a crime of greed where the perpetrator says, 'I don't give a damn about poor people,' and a crime of hatred and control where the perpetrator says, 'All you other X people better keep your f*****g heads down, or the same will happen to you.' Not that simple hate speech (unless it is threatening) also does not have the effect of controlling the target population.



simon_says
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27 Mar 2012, 12:06 am

if a crackhead steals a tv, beats up a bookie and hijacks a truck, he'll get charged with those crimes. If Vinny the made-man does it he can also get charged with racketeering or a RICO violation. Because society has decided that organized crime is unusually offensive and dangerous Just as it decided that violent bigots or terrorists get a special charge. We had trouble with them and made up special laws just to stick it to them.

None of this stuff came form Moses. It's society putting numbers and names to acts it doesnt like.



ruveyn
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27 Mar 2012, 6:11 am

simon_says wrote:
if a crackhead steals a tv, beats up a bookie and hijacks a truck, he'll get charged with those crimes. If Vinny the made-man does it he can also get charged with racketeering or a RICO violation. Because society has decided that organized crime is unusually offensive and dangerous Just as it decided that violent bigots or terrorists get a special charge. We had trouble with them and made up special laws just to stick it to them.

None of this stuff came form Moses. It's society putting numbers and names to acts it doesnt like.


Should people be persecuted because of their opinions or should they be persecuted because of what they -do-.

If an act was committed with mens rae (evil intent) then the opinion that ultimately lead to the formulation of men rae should not add to the crime committed because of mens rae. If A deliberately killed B wrongfully and without justification then A should be punished for murder after being tried and convicted on evidence showing 1. he did the deed and 2 he did it deliberately and with forethought. His political or racial opinions matter not a bit. Wrongful killing and racial bias are orthogonal. One can kill wrongfully without a racial bias and one can be racially bias without killing anyone. Two separate and distinct things.

ruveyn

ruveyn



Declension
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27 Mar 2012, 6:30 am

ruveyn wrote:
Why is a crime motivated by "hate" worse than a crime motivated by greed, anger or uncontrolled sexual lust?


Because it has a more widespread negative effect. It dehumanises an entire community and makes them afraid. It's murder + mass intimidation, which is obviously worse than murder alone.

TM wrote:
you can never be certain that a hate crime was a hate crime you can only have strong indications that something was a hate crime. Even if you have a guy with a swastika on his chest who beat the crap out a minority who was trying to steal the guy with the swastikas car, you can't be sure if it was a hate crime or someone being pissed about another person trying to steal their property.


I agree, but this isn't the point. We should be talking about what ought to be done if we know for certain that a crime is a hate crime. Sometimes it really is obvious. The killer might shout abuse, or leave a note. Recently there was a murder in the US where the criminal left a note saying "Go back to your own country, terrorist." That's a hate crime.

Janissy wrote:
To the victim, the crime is equally terrible whether it was done out of group hate, personal hate, boredom or for money.


Suppose that it's a murder. The victim's dead. The victim doesn't care one way or the other. But the community is more negatively affected if it was a hate crime.

Janissy wrote:
When you distinguish between manslaughter and premeditated murder, you are distinguishing between accidental killing and intentional killing. That isn't the same as distinguishing between different types of motives.


Not true. Manslaughter can involve intentional killing, or at least intentional attacking-without-caring-about-the-results. It's all about mitigating factors, and it is precisely the same sort of distinction that you can draw between a hate crime and a non-hate crime. It's not a matter of "did he mean to do it?" It's a matter of "why did he do it?"

Roman wrote:
A crime motivated by lust is a statement "women are merely a sex objects of men", thus it is against all women rather than just one woman.


If you're talking about rape, I wouldn't be so eager to assume that rape is about lust. It's often a way of expressing misogyny. So I think that some kinds of rape should indeed be classified as hate crime. This is something that is being discussed in many countries at the moment.

Roman wrote:
A crime motivated by greed is a statement "rich people have no need and they are obligated to help the poor, if they don't want to, they should be forced to".


That's a gigantic stretch. If someone kills a rich guy while yelling stuff that demonises the rich in some obvious way, then I think that it could be called a hate crime, sure. But I don't care very much about protecting the rich. They don't need our help.



LKL
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28 Mar 2012, 1:10 am

ruveyn wrote:
simon_says wrote:
if a crackhead steals a tv, beats up a bookie and hijacks a truck, he'll get charged with those crimes. If Vinny the made-man does it he can also get charged with racketeering or a RICO violation. Because society has decided that organized crime is unusually offensive and dangerous Just as it decided that violent bigots or terrorists get a special charge. We had trouble with them and made up special laws just to stick it to them.

None of this stuff came form Moses. It's society putting numbers and names to acts it doesnt like.


Should people be persecuted because of their opinions or should they be persecuted because of what they -do-.

If an act was committed with mens rae (evil intent) then the opinion that ultimately lead to the formulation of men rae should not add to the crime committed because of mens rae. If A deliberately killed B wrongfully and without justification then A should be punished for murder after being tried and convicted on evidence showing 1. he did the deed and 2 he did it deliberately and with forethought. His political or racial opinions matter not a bit. Wrongful killing and racial bias are orthogonal. One can kill wrongfully without a racial bias and one can be racially bias without killing anyone. Two separate and distinct things.

ruveyn

ruveyn

Sure: a murder with a racial motivation also has the added effect on the rest of the victim's community. The person who is convicted not only of murder, but also with a hate crime, is being punished for the effect on the entire community as well as for the effect on the victim.



donnie_darko
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28 Mar 2012, 1:45 am

I'm against the idea. IMO, murdering someone for money, or for sexual gratification, is just as 'low' a motive as murdering someone out of hate. In a way it's actually worse since racial hatred tends to stem from ignorance rather than callousness or malice and thus imo, is in a certain sense more forgivable, especially if committed with a group because it's always easier to do bad things in groups since you have the 'moral reassurance' of other people.