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Bush to veto sexual orientation hate crimes bill

Old 05-03-07, 11:41 PM
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Andrew Sullivan on this topic:

There are, I think, two coherent positions on hate crime laws. The first is opposition to the entire concept, its chilling effect on free speech, its undermining of the notion of equality under the law, and so on. That's my position. I oppose all hate crimes laws, regardless of the categories of individuals they purport to protect. The other coherent position is the view that hate crimes somehow impact the community more than just regular crimes and that the victims of such crimes therefore deserve some sort of extra protection under the law. The criteria for inclusion in such laws is any common prejudice against a recognizable and despised minority. The minority need not be defined by an involuntary characteristic - religious minorities are so protected - and they choose their faith. Nor need the minority be accurately idetified. If a gentile is bashed because the attacker thinks he's Jewish, the hate crime logic still applies. I disagree with this, but I can accept its coherence.

But the one truly incoherent position is that hate crimes laws are fine for all targeted groups except gays. Gays are among the most common victims of hate crimes, and straight people are also targeted for being gay even when they're not. If you're going to buy the whole concept of hate crimes, it makes no sense to exclude gays - none. Notice we need no discussion of the morality or otherwise of homosexuality. All that is being punished is the perception of someone else's identity. A straight, evangelical married man could have recourse if he was bashed because someone merely perceived him to be gay. A celibate gay man in reparative therapy could have recourse as well. So no serious moral argument can be made to distinguish the gay victims of hate crimes from other victims.

The federalist argument equally applies. If it is the position of the feds that this should be left entirely to the states, fine. But to say that the feds have a role in matters of race and religion, but not sexual orientation again makes no logical sense, unless the federal government wants to send a strong message about the moral and human and political inferiority of gay people.

Perhaps making these logical arguments is futile. The reason for this veto is quite simple. Christianists simply regard homosexuality as an evil and a sickness. Any law that implies that being gay is an identity and deserves equal respect and protection as other identities is anathema to them. Implicit in their worldview - and absolutely implicit in the position of the president - is that it's okay to attack gays in a way that it's not okay to attack, say, Jews or blacks. This is the core position of the Christianists - which is why I refuse to call them Christians. Bush, we now know, is a captive of this bigotry and an enabler of it. Whatever your general views of hate crime laws, this argument holds. And this president should be ashamed.
http://andrewsullivan.theatlantic.co...rimes_and.html

I pretty much agree with him. If Bush truly does not believe in hate crimes legislation, then he had six years of a Republican-controlled Congress with which he could have attempted to repeal federal hate crimes legislation. To veto this bill just says that he doesn't think gays deserve the same protection as other groups.
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Old 05-04-07, 12:09 AM
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It can be tricky to criticize people's opposition to hate crime laws. Some want the law enforced consistently, but others oppose it because of their own prejudices.

That being said, Bush indeed does pander to the religious right - this veto may or may not be an example of that.
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Old 05-04-07, 04:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Tracer Bullet
So I suppose we shouldn't call racists racists, because that would be name calling.
I'm just not quick to label a group of folks, I see the world with more shades of grey I guess.
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Old 05-04-07, 08:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Tracer Bullet
Get back to me when those people have followers that constitute at least 10% of the population, get their own national radio and TV shows, and advise members of government.
If they did, then they wouldn't have the political advantage and the support of the Democratic Party--and even a part of the Republican Party.

I wouldn't worry too much about a group of idiots who are homophobes. We have one leaving office in early 2009, which should also make things a little better.
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Old 05-04-07, 11:04 AM
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Good take from Dale Carpenter on volokh:

The problem with this [Andrew Sullivan] criticism, however, is that the bill does much more than simply add "sexual orientation" to the existing federal law on hate crimes passed in 1968. It's a whole new statute. Protecting gays is only one element, though the most publicized. The bill considerably expands federal jurisdiction over hate crimes in general, for all categories, by eliminating the current requirement that the crime occur while the victim is engaged in a federally protected activity. That jurisdictional limitation has kept federal involvement very limited in an area where state authority has traditionally reigned. The new law also calls for more federal resources to be expended on all classes of hate crimes. The veto of an amendment merely adding sexual orientation to existing federal law would pretty clearly reflect an anti-gay double-standard. A veto of this much more comprehensive bill does not.

To test this proposition, and to put gays on a par with other groups often targeted for hate crimes, Congress could simply amend the 1968 federal hate-crimes law to add protection for sexual orientation. Then we'll see what the President does.
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Old 05-04-07, 11:08 AM
  #31  
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Originally Posted by Red Dog
Good take from Dale Carpenter on volokh:
I still think he would veto it.

Also, Bush hasn't shown much interest in limiting the scope or power of the federal government, so I'm not sure I completely buy this, but it's an interesting criticism.

And look at the opening text of the White House statement again:

"The Administration favors strong criminal penalties for violent crime, including crime based on personal characteristics, such as race, color, religion, or national origin.
So, uh, yeah. Would it have been that difficult to state that they support inclusion of sexual orientation, but don't like this particular bill? What can you conclude from the fact that it doesn't say that?

Last edited by Tracer Bullet; 05-04-07 at 11:13 AM.
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Old 05-04-07, 12:29 PM
  #32  
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In Texas, a black guy named James Byrd was murdered by three white racists. Two of them were sentenced to death, and governor George W. Bush signed their death warrants. The third guy was sentenced to life in jail with no possibility of parole - the only reason he avoided getting the death penalty was because he agreed to testity against the other two. After governor Bush vetoed a hate crime bill, the NAACP ran a TV commercial saying that Bush was being too lenient on the killers.

In California, Tookie Williams was sentenced to death for murdering four people. The NAACP said the death pentlaty was too severe.

And that is a great example of the hypocrisy of the people who support hate crime laws. In one case, they said the death pentlay was too lenient. But in another case, they said the death penalty was too severe.

I'm against hate crime laws. I am consistent. I believe that all murderers should get life in jail with no possibilty of parole.

To those who support hate crime laws, please answer this: What should be the punishment for murder based on greed? What should be the punishment for murder based on hate?

Last edited by grundle; 05-04-07 at 12:44 PM.
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Old 05-04-07, 02:13 PM
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You know, if these laws were strictly about race and nationality, I could sort of see the argument of having them - you have no control over your race. Even though I don't think it's a choice, the jury is still somewhat out on homosexuality being out of one's control.

But the fact that religion is thrown in there messes that up because everyone clearly chooses their religion. I've never understood why religion is protected like biological conditions.
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Old 05-04-07, 02:20 PM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by Draven
But the fact that religion is thrown in there messes that up because everyone clearly chooses their religion. I've never understood why religion is protected like biological conditions.

I've always argued that it makes little sense that religious choice is protected by all the federal and state constitutions but sexual choice is not.
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Old 05-04-07, 02:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Draven
But the fact that religion is thrown in there messes that up because everyone clearly chooses their religion. I've never understood why religion is protected like biological conditions.
Freedom to practice, or not practice, a religion is one of the fundamental ideas this country is founded upon.
Edit to add: I don't believe any condition should be protected by hate crime laws, however. Protection from discrimination is good enough.

Last edited by Rockmjd23; 05-04-07 at 02:36 PM.
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Old 05-04-07, 02:40 PM
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Originally Posted by grundle
I'm against hate crime laws. I am consistent. I believe that all murderers should get life in jail with no possibilty of parole.

To those who support hate crime laws, please answer this: What should be the punishment for murder based on greed? What should be the punishment for murder based on hate?
I agree in the case of murder. Life in jail with on parole for 1st degree murder, period.

Where I can see the utility of hate crime laws are for things like getting a larger fine/sentence/whatever for spray painting racist remarks on someones house versus random graffiti etc. i.e. it can work for more minor crimes that deserve some extra punishment as they have a much more "vicious" intent behind them. In this case sending a hateful message versus just random vandalism.

But even then, while I see the reasoning I have a hard time supporting them as they are so hard to enforce consistently in a jury system.
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Old 05-04-07, 03:51 PM
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Originally Posted by grundle
In Texas, a black guy named James Byrd was murdered by three white racists. Two of them were sentenced to death, and governor George W. Bush signed their death warrants. The third guy was sentenced to life in jail with no possibility of parole - the only reason he avoided getting the death penalty was because he agreed to testity against the other two. After governor Bush vetoed a hate crime bill, the NAACP ran a TV commercial saying that Bush was being too lenient on the killers.

In California, Tookie Williams was sentenced to death for murdering four people. The NAACP said the death pentlaty was too severe.

And that is a great example of the hypocrisy of the people who support hate crime laws. In one case, they said the death pentlay was too lenient. But in another case, they said the death penalty was too severe.

I'm against hate crime laws. I am consistent. I believe that all murderers should get life in jail with no possibilty of parole.

To those who support hate crime laws, please answer this: What should be the punishment for murder based on greed? What should be the punishment for murder based on hate?
Sounds like your issue is the death penalty not hate crimes.
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Old 04-24-19, 09:27 PM
  #38  
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Re: Bush to veto sexual orientation hate crimes bill

A sad day for white supremacists. Nice smirk.

https://www.nbcnews.com/news/crime-c...agging-n998136

John William King executed in James Byrd Jr.'s brutal dragging death
The man behind one of the late 20th century's most notorious hate crimes is put to death by lethal injection in Texas.

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Old 04-25-19, 04:42 AM
  #39  
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Re: Bush to veto sexual orientation hate crimes bill

That's still what I think of when I hear the name Jasper, TX.
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Old 04-25-19, 05:32 AM
  #40  
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Re: Bush to veto sexual orientation hate crimes bill



Should have happened sooner.
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Old 04-25-19, 07:37 AM
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Re: Bush to veto sexual orientation hate crimes bill

So here is the question:

Do you think John King should have been able to vote
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Old 04-25-19, 11:26 AM
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Re: Bush to veto sexual orientation hate crimes bill

Originally Posted by mspmms View Post
So here is the question:

Do you think John King should have been able to vote
I wouldn't have cared if John King voted.
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Old 04-25-19, 11:33 AM
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Re: Bush to veto sexual orientation hate crimes bill

Originally Posted by mspmms View Post
So here is the question:

Do you think John King should have been able to vote
Is that the question? I don't know of any states proposing restoration of voting rights to felons currently serving time or awaiting the death penalty, only people who've completed their sentence.
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Old 04-25-19, 11:52 AM
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Re: Bush to veto sexual orientation hate crimes bill

Originally Posted by GoVegan View Post
Is that the question?
It’s been a topic of discussion recently.
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Old 04-25-19, 12:05 PM
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Re: Bush to veto sexual orientation hate crimes bill

Oh cool, I heard someone say something along those lines in person and assumed it was exaggeration. I'm fine with a temporary suspension of certain rights while people are in prison.
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Old 04-25-19, 01:01 PM
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Re: Bush to veto sexual orientation hate crimes bill

Ummm yea....punishment for crimes should include losing rights.

The question is, once you “serve your time” do you get all your rights back and when.

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Old 04-25-19, 01:09 PM
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Re: Bush to veto sexual orientation hate crimes bill

Originally Posted by Sdallnct View Post
Ummm yea....punishment for crimes should include losing rights.

The question is, once you “serve your time” do you get all your rights back and when.

Naively, I think serving your time should get you a clean slate from the moment you are done.
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Old 04-25-19, 01:22 PM
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Re: Bush to veto sexual orientation hate crimes bill

Originally Posted by Sdallnct View Post
Ummm yea....punishment for crimes should include losing rights.

The question is, once you “serve your time” do you get all your rights back and when.

Originally Posted by Draven View Post
Naively, I think serving your time should get you a clean slate from the moment you are done.
Without studying the issue, this would be my feeling about it. Not really caring about Sanders making it a thing - but he's not my first choice anyway.

As far as my feelings on King: Have fun in Hell, ya fucking asshole!
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Old 04-29-19, 08:30 PM
  #49  
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Re: Bush to veto sexual orientation hate crimes bill

It's an interesting topic, for sure. I haven't thought about it that much but first reaction would be violent criminals lose their right to vote while incarcerated. Non-violent criminals would still retain the right to vote.

Howerver,
Originally Posted by Draven View Post
Naively, I think serving your time should get you a clean slate from the moment you are done.
Absolutely this. Serving your time is repaying your debt to society. Removing that right for life is too extreme.
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Old 05-02-19, 08:00 AM
  #50  
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Re: Bush to veto sexual orientation hate crimes bill

Originally Posted by Michael Corvin View Post
It's an interesting topic, for sure. I haven't thought about it that much but first reaction would be violent criminals lose their right to vote while incarcerated. Non-violent criminals would still retain the right to vote.
So a guy who holds up a liquor store gets disenfranchised while in prison, while a guy convicted of securities fraud doesn't? Seems like there might be a class/racial disparity at work there.
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