it Simple, Legislators
legislation, now before Congress, would unleash legal chaos
Rev. Ted Pike
traditional American legal system has served us well for generations
largely because it requires, in most cases, one vital thing before it will
concede that a crime exists: physical evidence - broken glass, blood,
bullet holes, etc. The exception is verbal crimes, which come under such
well-defined (and adjudicated) labels as "threat,"
"harassment," "libel," "slander," and even,
perhaps, "disturbance of the peace."
since passage of the "Hate Crimes Statistics Act of 1990," a new
federal offense, "intimidation," has been created. Intimidation
comes into being when bias-motivation prompts a verbal threat of physical
harm, i.e. when a skinhead shouts, "You faggot, I'm going to break
every bone in your body!"
"intimidation" is brand new to the legal dictionary, being
invented to facilitate the thought-crimes agenda, it is not fettered by
the legal precedents and restrictions of traditional speech crimes. In
other words, it is custom-made for creative broadening by courts and
legislatures. If anti-hate bill S625 (HR1343) now before Congress is
passed, here is what will happen, as it has in Canada and other countries
in which "thought crimes" legislation has gotten a foot in the
originally outlawing only bias-motivated threat of physical harm
(intimidation), judges and legislatures will be quick to enlarge the
definition of intimidation to also protect the emotions of groups, such as
homosexuals. Thus, just as the courts today are equally concerned with the
emotional, as with the physical effects of, for example, child abuse, so
courts and legislatures are tilted sharply toward expanding the term
"intimidation" to criminalize those words which threaten groups
such as Jews and homosexuals, not just physically, but emotionally.
Already, even without passage of S625, state legislatures are broadening
"intimidation" in such a manner, creating state "anti-hate
laws" more extreme even than their proposed federal counterpart.
Idaho purchaser of my recent video, "Hate Laws: Making Criminals of
material is already very relevant here! There was a citizen recently
charged in Council, Idaho, for a hate crime at the high school football
game. He is an adult who used the "n" word in response, I
understand, to a black male referee grabbing his wife. He was charged with
felony violation of Idaho's so- called "hate crime," has lost
his job and had to leave the area for employment purposes, and he and his
family have been just plain persecuted ever since. I agree he was rude,
should not have used an insulting racial term; but that is all he did. To
try to destroy a man and his family for using insulting language is
outrageous, unjust and a travesty of justice. The individual who committed
the physical assault is the one who should be charged."
general maxim, "without physical evidence there is no crime,"
has stood English and American law well for hundreds of years. Let's not
allow either state or federal lawmakers to open a Pandora's box of legal
confusion by establishing a new system of law based on the claim that
bias-motivation and accusation can constitute a crime.
legislators believe outlawing "intimidation" will help create a
kinder, gentler world. They unthinkingly rubber-stamp
"anti-hate" bills into law.
is up to us to set them straight.
PRAYER NETWORK, P.O. Box 828, Clackamas OR 97015 www.truthtellers.org
©2007 National Prayer Network, Inc. All rights reserved.