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Hate crimes signify all forms of offenses that contravene the civil rights of an individual and that are kindled by belligerence towards the race, ethnic group, physical or mental incapability, sexual orientation, or values of the victims to mention a few.
Some of the explanations behind individuals and organizations engaging in hate crimes encompass nervousness, panic, and insufficient capacity to cater to the necessities of their family members coupled with a strong desire to harm the people whom they have chosen as scapegoats to validate their imperfections and weaknesses. To minimize the frequency of hate crimes, anti-discrimination laws ought to be reinforced to make sure that stringent legal actions are taken against the perpetrators.
Hate crime represents any form of offense that infringes the civil rights of a person and that it stimulated by aggression towards the race, ethnicity, physical or mental inability, sexual orientation, or beliefs of the victim to mention a few. The majority of people tend to think that hate crimes entail criminal activities carried out by perpetrators to individuals of other races (King & Sutton, 2013). However, several states have broadened the definition of hate crimes to encompass physical and psychological inability.
A common characteristic of people who undertake hate crimes is that they are affiliates of hate groups with most of them being linked to the Ku Klux Klan and neo-Nazi organizations (Cheng, Ickes, & Kenworthy, 2013). Nevertheless, this is at times untrue as hate crimes are even carried out by individual residents. Some of the citizens who engage in hate crimes do it as a manner of getting some form of pleasure from it. In this regard, some perpetrators consider that taking part in hate crimes is a way of eradicating the bad elements from society in an effort of making it a safe place.
The most prevalent form of this offense is racial hatred, which mainly occurs against African Americans, and could be attributed to the perpetrators acting on impulse as they have conviction in ethnic stereotyping. The perpetrators of hate crime are not apprehensive of the economic aspects and demonstrate characteristic distaste to inter-group and ethnic integration dealings. It is hard to comprehend the reasons behind some organizations or citizens destroying property and unjustifiably oppressing others.
Some of the reasons that result in individuals and groups engaging in hate crimes encompass anxiety, panic, and inadequate capacity to cater to the needs of their family members coupled with a devastating desire to harm the people whom they have selected as scapegoats to justify their flaws and weaknesses. In numerous instances, hate crimes emanate from underprivileged or weak monetary situations where the perpetrators at times end up believing the stereotypes that they watch on TVs and videos (Meyer, 2014).
Some instances of hate crimes are carried out by intelligent and peaceable, youthful persons who do not consider doing evil acts. It is evident that alcohol consumption and drug abuse give such people the motivation to do crimes as personal prejudice could be disguising.
Studies affirm that hate crimes do not occur at random or uncontrollably since in most cases, such ethnically motivated offenses erupt the moment a racially homogeneous region starts experiencing immigration of individuals from another race. In the US, this mostly happens against people from the Afro-American community, who are at high risk. A wide pool of studies has found that about 60% of hate crimes that happen in the US are racially motivated and more than half of such crimes target African Americans (Perry & Alvi, 2012). In such instances, prejudice becomes evident since it is harbored within human disposition.
Hate crimes have considerable and extensive effects not just on the victims but even other people. For instance, they could lead to poor self-esteem and high degrees of psychological distress, encompassing signs of nervousness and depression on the victims and their family members (Schmitt, Branscombe, Postmes, & Garcia, 2014). They could also make members of the targeted community live in fear.
To minimize the incidence of hate crimes, Congress and other stakeholders ought to back and strengthen the anti-discrimination laws to make sure that strict legal measures are taken against the perpetrators. The laws that could be strengthened encompass the Hate Crime Prevention Act. The Department of Justice ought to be supported for the successful tackling of racial conflicts.
For instance, the Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act should be backed to offer adequate aid to the legislators to make amendments where necessary in an effort of streamlining the examination and prosecution of such offenses. Communities should be encouraged to embark on educational endeavors with the purpose of suppressing minority stereotypes and decreasing resentment amid the different races within a society (Green & Spry, 2014). Furthermore, education and awareness against hate crimes ought to be made to children with the purpose of eradicating unfairness against individuals from other ethnic backgrounds.
In conclusion, it is evident that some perpetrators think that taking part in hate crimes is an approach of removing bad elements from society in an attempt of making it a secure place. Alcohol consumption and substance abuse give perpetrators the motivation to do hate crimes as it is easier to commit the offenses when the offenders are under the influence. In an effort of minimizing hate crimes, communities should be encouraged to take part in educational endeavors with the intention of curbing minority stereotypes and lessening dislike amid the diverse races within a society.
Cheng, W., Ickes, W., & Kenworthy, J. B. (2013). The phenomenon of hate crimes in the United States. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 43(4), 761-794.
Green, D. P., & Spry, A. D. (2014). Hate crime research design and measurement strategies for improving causal inference. Journal of Contemporary Criminal Justice, 30(3), 228-246.
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King, R. D., & Sutton, G. M. (2013). High times for hate crimes: Explaining the temporal clustering of hate‐motivated offending. Criminology, 51(4), 871-894.
Meyer, D. (2014). Resisting hate crime discourse: Queer and intersectional challenges to neoliberal hate crime laws. Critical Criminology, 22(1), 113-125.
Perry, B., & Alvi, S. (2012). ‘We are all vulnerable’: The in terrorem effects of hate crimes. International review of victimology, 18(1), 57-71.
Schmitt, M. T., Branscombe, N. R., Postmes, T., & Garcia, A. (2014). The consequences of perceived discrimination for psychological well-being: A meta-analytic review. Psychological Bulletin, 140(4), 921.