Mr Perrin’s blog.
A Word in Your Ear
Is hate a crime?
“I ask the question because I attended a public meeting, organised by the Police Commissioner for Essex, and an item on the agenda was titled “Hate Crime”.
I thought it was a worthy sentiment and was the reason I was at the meeting because I “hated crime” and was eager to hear what the Police Commissioner and the Police had in mind to tackle the problem of crime in Thurrock.
So I was somewhat surprised to learn this item had nothing to do with solving the myriad of crimes committed daily and bringing to justice the perpetrators, but was a specific “crime” related to hatred toward a person or persons and there was a dedicated team of Police Officers allocated to deal specifically with that “crime”.
According to my dictionary “The Oxford Universal Dictionary” hate is “an emotion of extreme dislike or aversion; detestation, abhorrence. To hold in very strong dislike; to detest; to bear malice to”. That being so I suggest it would be extremely difficult to prosecute someone for an emotion and may well explain why the police seem unable to produce a figure for the conviction of anyone specifically charged with committing a “Hate Crime”.
I hate people who hunt and kill foxes and other wildlife in the name of sport and a “good day out”. I hate politicians who impose severe cuts upon “ordinary” people whilst at the same time indulge themselves in luxurious lifestyles. I hate people who push and shove their way onto trains and buses and queue jump. I hate drivers who “race” me to a pedestrian crossing but, even though the thought may cross my mind, I do not set out to do such people harm or incite others to do so. Whilst I may hate such people I do not believe I am guilty of any crime until I actually attack or abuse or incite others to attack or abuse such persons. It is the act not the emotion or thought that constitutes a crime and warrants prosecution. There may be some exceptions, such as plotting to kill someone or planning to rob a bank, where intent to commit a crime can be proved.
There are adequate laws already in force to deal with violence and abuse or incitement to violence and abuse without the necessity to create a specific law for so called “hate” crimes. It would appear that the Government has, yet again pandered to the “do- gooders” who regard the slightest criticism of ethnic groups as racist irrespective of whether or not the criticism has merit.
My advice to the Government and the “do-gooders”, most of whom do not live in areas with large numbers of so called ethnic “minorities”, rather than dismissing the expressed concerns of the indigenous “white” minority as racist they would do well to look at both sides of the “racist coin” and instead of considering it necessary to give ethnic groups special protective laws they ensured that everyone was treated equally under the law.
The practice of special laws for some is in the same category as “positive” discrimination i.e. they both allow favour to be given to one at the expense of the equal rights of another.
Dare I suggest that the dedicated team of police officers, currently investigating “hate crime”, would be better employed catching real criminals such as burglars and muggers?