Hate Crimes Polluting America







Putting an End to Hate Crimes
“Homosexuality is assuredly no advantage, but it is nothing to be ashamed of, no vice, no degradation, it cannot be classified as an illness…. Many highly respectable individuals of ancient and modern times have been homosexuals, several of the greatest me among them (Plato, Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, etc.). It is a great injustice to persecute homosexuality as a crime, and cruelty too.”(Isay, 3)

Long ago it was declared by the republic of this nation that all men are created equal. By this statement, our founding fathers agreed upon the fact that no matter your race, religion, sexual orientation, sex or disability, as a citizen of the United States of America one has the same rights as the next man. Although it was recognized in the past and action was taken, prejudices still exist in today’s society. As time progresses, American’s seem to find a new fault in their common man so that they may have some hostility and blame the problems of the nation upon them. Today it is suffice to say that many citizens have overlooked the aspect of race, sex and religion, and instead hold animosity against those who retain a separate sexual orientation then themselves. People of the homosexual, bisexual, and transgender sexual preferences are now the nations prime target in the fear and anguish against those who are different. This primary topic, which falls under the key issue of Civil Rights, must be dealt with accordingly for there to be any chance of the nation to have complete peace.
To what degree is this childish hate against homosexuals that the majority of society holds deep? The hate begins at a very simple stage, as does any prejudice, which
may come about in the nation. Initially people, due to their underlining ignorance, will grasp a prejudice against someone due to the fact that they are different because people generally are afraid of that which they do not comprehend, in this case being different sexual orientations. When this fear reaches a certain degree, people may act upon it to do justice for their hateful feelings. In turn, hate crimes have begun over the last decade to thrive in the United States and other countries around the world.
The current law in the United States “permits federal prosecution of a hate crime only if the crime was motivated by bias based on race, religion, national orientation, or color, and the assailant intended to prevent the victim from exercising a federal protected right.”(HRC) In 1999, this law was amended with The Hate Crimes Prevention Act (HCPA). The HCPA was established to “amend the current federal law to include real or perceived sexual orientation, gender, and disability so the FBI would be able to investigate and prosecute violent hate crimes against gays, lesbians, and bisexuals.”(HRC) As is shown, the government has taken some action in ending discrimination in the nation, although violent acts of hatred against homosexuals is continuing to take place.
In 1993 a gay man was beaten to death after coming out in the United States Navy. Apparently, fellow Navy recruits beat the man after finding out that he was an alleged homosexual. Mourners say that the man was lynched, having a bashed skull, eight broken ribs and violated private areas. The mother of the victim stated that the only way that she could properly identify the body was by the distinguishing tattoos located on the man’s forearms. The victim’s family believes that the government’s 50-year-old ban
on homosexuals in the military did not aid the situation. After the victim “came out” he was discharged form the Navy, about to make his way home, before the incident.(Bruning)
Due incidents such as the previous taking place within the nation, the government established the HCPA in hopes that it would drastically reduce the number of hate crimes. “In 1998, there was a 14.3 percent increase in reported hate crimes against gays and lesbians according to the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) Uniform Crime Reporting Program, making them the third highest category reported to the FBI.”(HRC) Let it be reminded that the increase was reported before the establishment of the HCPA, although it is also reported that a decrease in the number of hate crimes has occurred