And again, I disagree. You cannot predict society's reaction with a similar likelihood. Not at all. Again, a drunk driver is being punished for his or her OWN actions that are deemed dangerous to public safety and not based on a "possible" reaction of society to a specific crime. Two completely different things.
Facts are empirical claims which can be verified or falsified in a manner which does not depend specifically upon the observer in question.
Opinions are predictions, unverified (or unverifiable) statements, or expression of aesthetics/values.
You have a bad habit of loosely mixing together feelings and wishes with factual claims. That doesn't work. Whether you or I love it or hate it, it most certainly IS possible (and indeed, rather common) to base policies at least partially upon expectations of how an action will be responded to.
You find it ridiculous/incomprehensible that people notice the difference in harm between TRYING to kill someone vs. ACTUALLY killing them? REALLY?Originally Posted by cmakaioz
HOWEVER...this doesn't change the fact that HCE's are based upon the principle of providing more severe penalties for having committed crimes shown to cause more harm.
1) commission of a criminal act... CHECK
2) evidentiary demonstration of specific animus against women? --not yet shown
3) evidentiary demonstration by prosecutor that #1 was motivated specifically by #2? -- not yet shown.
In English: A mugger could rob Indian immigrants, and only Indian immigrants, and this -- on its own -- would NOT be sufficient to carry an HCE.
The prosecutor must demonstrate specific animus ON THE PART OF THE OFFENDER, and further demonstrate that this animus was the specific motivation for the specific criminal act. The identity of the victim is only relevant insofar as it feeds into the demonstrated animus of the offender. ANYONE can be the victim of a hate crime, because HCE's are based upon demonstrated animus on the part of the offender, NOT whether or not the victim is ACTUALLY what the offender perceives them to be. For example, in (Colorado, I think) a couple years back, there was an assault against a Sikh man by a perpetrator who wanted to terrorize Arabs. The relevant basis (of the HCE which was carried against the offender) was that the OFFENDER was trying to target Arabs, and (falsely) believed the Sikh man to be an Arab.
Get it yet? It's about the animus of the offender, not the real or imagined identity of the victim.
You could have a defendant who actively published homophobic bigotry on websites and radio and in print for his entire adult life...but until and unless the prosecutor successfully shows through evidence that this animus was specifically linked to an already-recognized (convicted) criminal act, that history doesn't mean anything for the purpose of sentencing.
Here's a parallel example:
The speed limit on my local highway is 60 MPH. (FACT)
I think it should be higher (OPINION)
My brother thinks it should be lower (OPINION)
BUT...no matter what I or my brother feels about it, the speed limit is 60 MPH (FACT)
animus alone? not enough
commission of a crime? not enough
commission of a crime by someone who has previously been shown to bear a specific animus? STILL NOT ENOUGH
Commision of a crime, by someone shown to bear a specific animus against a protected class, AND who is ALSO shown to have committed the crime BASED UPON that animus?
THEN, AND ONLY THEN does the HCE have a fighting chance of being carried to the sentence.
I've moved on to a better forum (scienceforums.net). Facts matter, and I don't have the time or energy for putting up with the pretense that they don't. PM me if you'd like me to get in touch with you when I'm done developing my own forum system, likely towards the end of 2013.
OMG! That is WAY too long and redundant. I'm going to answer this in a nutshell because you are obviously getting carried away here with all of the quoting and HUGE posts.
The simple FACT of the matter is that you and others cannot read minds. THAT is the ONLY FACT here. All of this "figuring out why" is nothing but PURE speculation. It is certainly not justice. You cannot legislate feelings and thoughts. PERIOD. You cannot, unless you can read minds, PROVE why somebody committed a crime. Even if they confess that they did the crime because they "hate" the race involved, it does not matter. People are known to say ALL kinds of things. It is not PROOF. That is why detectives seek out HARD evidence when they want to prosecute a criminal. Even eyewitness accounts are considered weak as evidence, so how on earth can you say with certainty that our lawmakers, judges, juries, etc., can KNOW without a REASONABLE DOUBT what someone is thinking during the commission of a crime or how society or a certain community will react to this crime. You can't, and you know that. You just like this legislation, and you don't care if it isn't fair.
Obviously, some people think that certain races of people and homosexuals who are crime victims should have extraneous benefits in the justice system that the rest of us don't have. Lady Justice is supposed to be BLIND and doesn't make assumptions.
Since the 15th century, Lady Justice has often been depicted wearing a blindfold. The blindfold represents objectivity, in that justice is or should be meted out objectively, without fear or favour, regardless of identity, money, power, or weakness; blind justice and impartiality. The earliest Roman coins depicted Justitia with the sword in one hand and the scale in the other, but with her eyes uncovered. Justitia was only commonly represented as "blind" since about the end of the 15th century. The first known representation of blind Justice is Hans Gieng's 1543 statue on the Gerechtigkeitsbrunnen (Fountain of Justice) in Berne.
Perhaps you'll listen to someone with a liberal perspective. From the New York Times. Please read.
Tyler and Trayvon, Continued... - NYTimes.com
No one has any way of knowing, because no one here can read anothers' heart and mind.
That is why "hate crime" is crap. It's an attempt to enforce thought crime.
The guy tried to kill people, I'd buy domestic terrorism, as it certainly seems to fall within that broad category, but I'm open to the large possibility that he is instead just insane.
“If we must have an enemy at the head of Government, let it be one whom we can oppose, and for whom we are not responsible, who will not involve our party in the disgrace of his foolish and bad measures.”
- Alexander Hamilton. Spiritual father of #NeverTrump
This one's interesting too. I don't think it's from a liberal perspective, still an interesting read.
Why We Should Hate