What’s a hate crime?

We’ve been hearing the term “hate crime” used more and more these days, it’s thrown around too often and used too liberally. When broken down, it’s pretty obvious what it means. An offending act that’s criminal in nature done as a result of personal prejudice. The hate in this scenario is usually out of contempt of someone because of their race, religion, or sexual orientation. Hating someone because they’re black and then proceeding to cause them physical harm is obviously a hate crime. Hating someone because they’re left-handed would not be considered a hate crime. Or logical. Not that hating someone because of their skin color holds much logical sense either.

It’s the second part of the word, labeling it as a crime, where people have trouble differentiating. When someone feels they’ve been caused some sort of harm due to the color of their skin, sexual orientation, religion, or pretty much any characteristic about themselves they think they were targeted because of, they’re quick to define it as a hate crime. Slapping “hate crime” on something is done for a few reasons.

Mainly, it’s going to garner much more attention. A woman recently went to a drive-thru in Mississippi, and after receiving her food, noticed the receipt had her labeled in the system as “Black Bitches in Silver Car”. She complained about this to the manager, who had the idiot who wrote it apologize. That wasn’t enough, so she posted it online for the world to see. Which is fine, it was a real shitty thing to do, and the guy who wrote it deserved to be put on blast, and the woman was a target of hateful speech in a public place by an employee, so it was basically just her own personal yelp review with some evidence. The idiot was subsequently fired from the place, a fast food restaurant called “Who Dat” which I’ve never heard of but have absolutely no surprise in finding out employs racist idiots because I doubt they have a very thorough employee vetting process in place when making new hires. I’m sure his fast food talents will find a new home at another Southern chain that I’ve never heard of, assuming someone tells him to maybe leave “Who Dat” off his resume, since I doubt he’s smart enough to figure dat out himself.

Of course, when posting this, the woman made sure the online pundits who spend day after day fighting for social justice in the world and equality for every living, breathing organism (as long as it either benefits them or gets them attention) would hear about it by proclaiming ” I seek justice for this hate crime and I will no longer remain silent”. The trigger words are there, “hate crime” and “justice” that will wake up the twitter freedom fighters, and force the masses of the judgmental to unite their thumb typing superpowers of bringing about change for the sake of change, boredom, and attention seeking, to work as one.

It will also no doubt do what many people who post these sort of things online are truly hoping to do, show monetary benefits in the name of faux-outrage. It will not be long until a go fund me is started for this woman who had to endure such a terrifying criminal act in the name of hate, to help alleviate the burden she’s had to live with in the days since, which I’m sure consisted of losing sleep and symptoms of the Post Traumatic Stress Disorder she undoubtedly will have a hack in a doctors coat say she has.

It seems way too common these days that we find people posting images online of receipts they were given that contain some sort of hateful message, usually written by a Trump supporting Whitey. It appears to be much easier to believe something is a hate crime when it is done by someone white and towards a minority. I’m not saying this doesn’t happen, clearly there are racist morons who feel the need to say and write things to people solely because they are filled with hate and don’t have the common sense or courtesy to perhaps keep their misguided resentment to themselves rather than try to insult someone for no reason in particular.

This isn’t a crime though. These are just stupid acts of racism and hate, and of course the people who do this should have some sort of punishment done to them, but they shouldn’t be labeled as a criminal. Which in essence is what you’re doing by proclaiming these things as hate crimes. If it’s a crime, the one who perpetrated it is therefore a criminal. Except we don’t tend to think of these racists as criminals, we just think of them as ignorant racists, committing a hate crime. Which is why we need to stop being so quick to label it as a crime. Freedom of speech exists in this country, and if the hateful things people are saying to someone aren’t anything beyond offensive, it’s not a crime. Making racist statements that consist of threats or done in a way that may make the person reading it fear for their life or physical well-being, that’s a crime. Saying something stupid and offensive is wrong, but it’s not a crime.

People are constantly finding new things to be offended about today, we live in a world where nothing is safe from possible backlash due to the emotional harm it caused to a person because their feelings were hurt. It’s bad enough we have to constantly hear from the PC police about what words we can and can’t use because it may or may not offend a small amount of people, we don’t need to continue on until we’ve given in and taken away the right of freedom of speech by criminalizing words. If someone says or does something racist or out of prejudice, the majority of us in the world know when it’s wrong. The guy losing his job here should be enough, we don’t need to continue to soften the country by allowing those who had some mean words said to them to easily profit out of some false emotional damage. A crime will be handled by the actual police, we don’t need to give the social justice police any more ammunition to continue their way of punishing those they seek fit at the moment by stomping their feet and crying louder until the rest of us give in.

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