P1. In the Declaration of Independence it says, “All men are created equal,” but how true does that hold today? . As the last presidential election advanced the American people began to see many clear divides within the American people. On the topic of crimes, specifically hate crimes there are many people who believe hate crime laws should not exist, because rather than help avoid conflict and unify people it is creating a larger divide and reinforce that Blacks are different than Whites. While the opposing side does not believe people should not be punished for their crimes they just believe that the hate crime laws should be repealed and not affect the case.
P2. The argument that J. Wilson an author for alibertarianfuture.com is that hate crimes do not exist and hate crime laws do more damage than good. This would be a valid argument if and only if all people were treated equally. America has an extensive history of racism and inequality starting from the time this land was settled. The white man came and took the land of the native Americans. Fast forward a few years and later came the importation of African American slaves. They were treated poorly like animals and were not seen as human. After the Civil War when the slaves were freed, America was still a white mans country, African Americans were still extremely mistreated and had little to no opportunity to get ahead and live a normal life equal to that of the white man. This carried on for over one hundred years until the civil rights movement, but prior to the civil rights movement Blacks and Whites were segregated and Blacks got the short end of the stick with poorly maintained schools and public amenities. Although we have come extremely far as a country we are far from seeing everyone as equal, and its no longer just an issue of African American and Whites, now there are hispanics, asians, and people from the middle east. Wilson argues that hate crimes only serve to show that there is an evident difference between races. While equality is the goal, it does not mean we are working toward being the same as one another. The truth is people in America are different color does exist and it is completely okay to be different, that is what makes America great. If hate crime laws were not in place it is very likely that this country would still be like it was before the civil rights movement, because more people would take advantage of the fact that they are in the majority.
P3. Another topic people may argue is that the justice system in America has been proven to be in favor of the middle and upperclass caucasian male. There are countless examples of the same crime being committed by people of two different races and the evidence shows that the caucasian person most of the time gets a lighter sentence. For example more recently the case of Brock Turner and Cory Batey. They were both college athletes who committed rape while girls were under the influence. Turner only received 6 months but ended up receiving no jail time because the judge felt that Brock was truly sorry and was an outstanding athlete. Cory Batey on the other hand received 15 years of prison. The crime was very similar almost identical while part of it could’ve been that Brock had a better lawyer however the drastic difference severity of punishment is astonishing. Another issue going on in America is police brutality towards minorities. Over the past couple of years there have been multiple murders of unarmed minorities by police officers. Many times the police officers who committed these offenses were let free. For example the killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson; a police officer shot and killed an unarmed black teenager and had the charges dropped. Or the NY police officer who killed unarmed man Eric Garner using excessive force by choking him;this police officer was also not indicted for this murder. those are only two examples of the many times this has happened. The divide in America is too deeply embedded in our way of being that for everyone to be equal is not a realistic goal. Which is why I emphasize that hate crime laws are necessary because it does help even the scale and the system can sometimes work for people who deserve justice.
P4. Finally even though everyone is equal and no one race religion or belief is superior to others everyone is entitled to their own beliefs, no one should be dehumanized for being themselves. For example the Charleston murderer killed 9 innocent people simply because they were black. His only motive was hatred, no other reason. Non of those people deserved to die so he should get a harsher punishment. Hate crime laws have proven to work and they have played a big role in significantly lowering hate crimes because people think twice before committing an act of violence or verbal abuse to someone that is different than them because they know the price to pay. That is why today in age people do not celebrate the oppression of others on a large scale because over the years hate crime laws have helped advance the equality amongst races, sexes and religions that live amongst each other. Everyone is equal, there should be no divide, we should unite all together as Americans more than anything else. That is the only way this country will continue to progress. So yes hate crimes are very real and in situations such as the one in Charleston there is no other explanation for it.
“There Is No Such Thing As A Hate Crime.” A Libertarian Future. N.p., 27 Aug. 2015. Web. 18 Apr. 2017. https://alibertarianfuture.com/big-government/police-state/there-is-no-such-thing-as-a-hate-crime/
Monitor on Psychology. American Psychological Association, n.d. Web. 17 Apr. 2017. http://www.apa.org/monitor/nov01/hatecrimes.aspx