Friday, October 31, 2008

Anti-Gay Crimes Up

This is in the news this week:
WASHINGTON – Hate crime incidents decreased slightly last year, despite a surge in crimes targeting gays and lesbians.

The FBI reported more than 7,600 hate crime incidents in 2007, down about 1 percent from last year. The decline was driven by decreases in the two largest categories of hate crimes -- crimes against race and religion.

But prejudice against sexual orientation, the third-largest category, increased about 6 percent, the report found. FBI: Hate crime down in 2007 but anti-gay crime up

Six percent increase! That's a lot.

Why do think this is happening?
The FBI report does not compare its data from one year to the next because the number of law enforcement agencies participating in the annual count varies from year to year. More agencies contributed to the 2007 report than the 2006 report, however.

The data released Monday is consistent with previous years. Racial bias remained the most common motive, accounting for more than half of all reported hate crimes. Blacks, Jews and gays were the most frequent victims of hate crimes, the report found.

The FBI report is purely statistical and does not assign a cause for the slight overall decrease or increase in anti-gay hate crimes.

More than a third of all hate crime incidents were categorized as vandalism or property destruction. Intimidation was the second most common hate crime, followed by simple assault.

I don't think six percent is a "slight" increase.

I hope the FBI does more than gather statistics on these things. I would like to know that they are studying the problem, trying to figure out why people are committing these crimes. The FBI should infiltrate groups that promote such crimes and clean up this mess.

Something tells me that isn't going happen.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

none of your cut and paste says hate crimes against gays are up

it said "prejudice" is up 6%

prejudice is not a hate crime

the idea that opinions are violent is a postmodernist fallacy, a true TTFism

remember a vote for Obama next Tuesday opens the door for President Palin in 2012, an individual with vision on how to deal with gay issues

October 31, 2008 8:22 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

According to the Oct, 2008, FBI Hate Crime Report, Montgomery County Police Dept. reported incidents of Hate Crimes for Race(12); Religion(16); Sexual Orientation (0); Ethnicity(1); Disability(0).
Where are the MCPS tolerance classes for religion and race?

October 31, 2008 8:53 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, the FBI reporting system is so anecdotal and reliant on inconsisten reporting that it doesn't have a lot of meaning. I believe Mississippi reports no hate crimes. Most jurisdictions in the country do not have a category for hate crimes based on sexual orientation or gender identity, so don't report any such incidents.

I'm reminded of the argument put forth in Fairfax that suggested the county didn't need to include sexual orientation in its non-discrimination policy since there had not been any official complaints of discrimination. But there couldn't be any such complaints, because there wasn't such a category. So there shouldn't be a category since there weren't any complaints. But there couldn't be any complaints because....

In DC, one jurisdiction that has a long-standing policy, about 80% of charges of hate crimes are based on sexual orientation.

I wonder if there are any crimes based on unwillingness to have a name.


October 31, 2008 11:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Unfortunately, the FBI reporting system is so anecdotal and reliant on inconsisten reporting that it doesn't have a lot of meaning."

It's possible you're right, Robert, but Jim was making a case based on FBI stats.

So you're saying Jim's point is baseless because the stats he used don't "have a lot of meaning", right?

October 31, 2008 1:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jim wasn't making a case or an argument, but reporting news. I was commenting on the news. A legitimate question to ask is "Is this increase due to increased incidence, or increased reporting?"

The other point I was making is that hate crimes based on sexual orientation are grossly under-reported, perhaps by an order of magnitude, simply because so many places don't report them.


The notion that there are no hate crimes is Mississippi is ridiculous on the face of it, to anhyone who's ever been to Mississippi. It's like saying there are no gay Mormons.

October 31, 2008 4:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There sure are plenty of ex-ex-gay ex-Mormons.

November 02, 2008 9:13 AM  

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