Posted August 24, 2013, by Edmund R. Folsom.
I hate hate crimes statutes- always have. This week, three juveniles were arrested for their involvement in the murder of Christopher Lane, a white Australian college student who was out for a jog in Duncan, Oklahoma. One of the three told police he and his pals were bored, so they decided to kill somebody. And kill somebody they did, apparently by driving up behind the total stranger, Lane, and shooting him in the back. Two of the three juveniles, James Edwards and Chancey Luna, are clearly black. The third, Michael Jones, has been referred to in media accounts as white, but alternative media accounts have reported that he has one black parent, which must make him a “white black” in line with the “white Hispanic” label that the media affixed to George Zimmerman. Edwards reportedly used his Twitter account to express his hatred of whites, as in: “90 percent of white ppl are nasty #HATE THEM,” as well as to brag that he’d knocked out a few whites since the verdict in the Zimmerman trial, referring to whites by use of the term “woods,” which is short for “peckerwoods.” That and the fact that two, if not all three, of the alleged perpetrators are black while the victim is clearly white has caused a significant number of people to question why the murder isn’t being treated as a hate crime. But why should it matter? Apart from issues of double standards and hypocrisy, of course, really, why should it matter?
In this case, three juveniles decided to kill somebody and then set about doing it because it they were bored. How does it get worse than that? Can anyone seriously maintain that it’s pretty bad for someone to murder another person purely for the thrill of it, but it’s really serious to select the thrill-kill victim based on race, gender, perceived sexual orientation or religious affiliation? Any time someone selects a murder (or assault) victim based on race, gender, perceived sexual orientation or religious affiliation, the perpetrator is choosing to commit a calculated act of violence against someone who has done nothing to provoke that act of violence. The criminal law has always recognized that brand of violence as particularly punishment-worthy, long before the advent of hate crimes legislation. If some thug decides to bash my skull in on a Saturday night because he’s drunk and itching to bash a skull, it really doesn’t matter to me whether he chooses to bash my skull because I’m a white guy or because I happen to be in the vicinity. And it’s a good thing that his motive makes no difference to me, because it won’t make any difference to the powers that be either. I could hold my breath a long time waiting for the President of the United States to publicly declare his empathy for my plight because I could be his uncle or his cousin, or even himself 10 years from now, just as the family of Christopher Lane can wait till hell freezes over for a similar expression of solidarity from the Chief Executive.
In 2009, a group of young guys, all of them white, decided to break into a home in New Hampshire and commit a killing. Why? Because they decided they wanted to have that experience, that’s why. They didn’t know anyone who lived there. It just seemed like a great place to do some killing. Once inside, they killed a white woman whose husband was away on business and severely injured her white 10-year-old daughter, by hacking and stabbing them with a machete and a knife. That crime would have been no worse if the victims were selected because they were female, or if the woman and child had been black and had been selected on that basis (in fact, if the motive had been to feel the experience of murdering a child, that wouldn’t even have earned additional scorn under a hate crimes statute). But if the victims had been black, I have no doubt we would once again have witnessed the rolling out of the great “teachable moment” morality play, and no doubt some extra charges brought under a hate crimes statute. Why? Politics: To spotlight the evil that flows from an attitude of privilege among white males in this fundamentally flawed American society. Well, what better demonstrates a fundamental flaw in our present day American society than the fact that we have young guys going around killing people out of boredom or just to experience the thrill of the kill? Let’s hold a big “teachable moment” morality play about that. To make it convenient for the President of the United States to join in, maybe we could even set it in his home town of Chicago.
AREN’T THERE ENOUGH REAL ONES THAT WE DON’T NEED ANY FAKES?
Then we get fake hate crimes, in which activists agitate grievance brigades by staging acts of identity group hatred, apparently because there aren’t enough real hate crimes to maintain the proper degree of hysteria. But oops, in the recent case addressed in the links below, when the fakery was revealed, the elite educational institution where it was perpetrated and the establishment media that reported the “hate” offenses in the first instance refused to address the duping. The Cause, man…by whatever means…
Hate crimes statutes were conceived to help advance certain political narratives. The Matthew Shepard story is a cornerstone of one such narrative. The following article raises questions about the truth of that story. Is it true? Does it matter? What would the administration at Oberlin College say?
And then there was this one from Vassar College: