Tuesday, November 24, 2009

In 2008 hate crimes down in Alabama, but...

The FBI report dubbed "2008 Hate Crime Statistics" on the number of hate crimes annually publish that details crimes and incidents reported in 2008 that were committed based on race, religion, sexual orientation, ethnicity or disability reported in Alabama are minimal compared to other states.  According to the report, Alabama has the fifith lowest number of hate crimes reported with just 12 incidents, according to the report. Only Mississippi, Alaska, New Mexico and Georgia reported fewer than Alabama.

However, the report doesn't require anything, but the statistics were reported voluntarily by law enforcement agencies. In Alabama, 163 agencies, representing about two-thirds of the population, participated in the report.  In other words, they only gave what information they wanted to give.  Also Alabama is one of the many states that doesn't including sexual orientation or gender identity within their definitions of a hate crime. 

Oh yeah, I do love when social conservatives and the ignorant comes in saying that a hate crime is a "thought crime". 

Hate crimes (also known as bias-motivated crimes) occur when a perpetrator targets a victim because of his or her perceived membership in a certain social group, usually defined by racial group, religion, sexual orientation, disability, ethnicity, nationality, age, gender, gender identity, or political affiliation. "Hate crime" generally refers to criminal acts which are seen to have been motivated by hatred of one or more of the listed conditions. Incidents may involve physical assault, damage to property, bullying, harassment, verbal abuse or insults, or offensive graffiti or letters.

I just love when (white) people say that "liberals" came up with hate crimes yet they were saying the same thing when ethnicity and racial group was included with in federal definition.  However, they were silent when religion was included. 

Anyways, the Shepard/Byrd Hate Crimes Act does help, but only when local law enforcement agencies fails to do anything and in most cases they will fail to even report the act as a hate crime since the state laws doesn't include sexuality or gender identity as protected groups.  How convienent, sometimes society worries me...

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