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U.S. hate crimes legislation

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Hate crimes are violent crimes, hate speech or vandalism motivated by feelings of enmity or animus against an identifiable social group. Animosity towards the victims of hate crimes is often based on race, religion, sexual orientation, disability, ethnicity, or national origin. The U.S. Congress has considered legislation instituting special penalties for these crimes, as well as defining (and redefining) the groups included and protected. This page focuses on these efforts.

110th Congress

House

Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2007

On May 3, the House considered a bill (H.R.1592), sponsored by Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.), to provide federal assistance to states, local jurisdictions, and Indian tribes to prosecute hate crimes.[1]

<USbillinfo congress="110" bill="H.R.1592" />

Under the bill, hate crimes would be those determined to be motivated by prejudice towards race, color, religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation or disability. Grants to state, local and tribal enforcement agencies would be authorized to help with investigative expenses and training and to combat hate crimes committed by and against youth. Previously, the law only included race, color, religion or national origin as protected groups.[2]

Grants would bring technical, forensic and prosecutorial assistance to law enforcement agencies if a violent crime was motivated by prejudice towards protected classes. Grants would also cover “extraordinary” expenses of such investigations and could be used to train local law enforcement in identifying, investigating, prosecuting and preventing hate crimes. Grants could not exceed $100,000 per jurisdiction per year.[3]

The bill passed, 237-180.[4]

<USvoteinfo year="2007" chamber="house" rollcall="299" />

Articles and resources

Related SourceWatch articles

Sources

  1. Robert McElroy, "Managing America: Law Enforcement," TheWeekInCongress, May 4, 2007.
  2. Robert McElroy, "Managing America: Law Enforcement," TheWeekInCongress, May 4, 2007.
  3. Robert McElroy, "Managing America: Law Enforcement," TheWeekInCongress, May 4, 2007.
  4. Robert McElroy, "Managing America: Law Enforcement," TheWeekInCongress, May 4, 2007.

External resources

Wikipedia also has an article on U.S. hate crimes legislation. This article may use content from the Wikipedia article under the terms of the GFDL.

External articles