Does H.R. 1913 Violate The 14th Amendment?
I’ve been bombarded with “special news” lately about everything. Swine Flu being the latest and greatest of course, but my roommate is covering that over at the JustMyTruth blog, so feel free to check it out.
I’ve often wondered what every new “pandemic” warning was covering up. This time it looks like it might be the International Gun Treaty that everyone says Obama is all set to sign which would greatly diminish our 2nd Amendment guarantee to ‘keep and bear arms’. I’ll save that for another time when I have been able to decipher the whole thing intelligently.
For now, I want to talk about H.R. 1913 otherwise known as the ‘Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2009’.
I’ve been bombarded this past week with “must read” email notices about this bill. The name alone makes me laugh…..this bill will PREVENT nothing (just like every other bill made that ONLY law-abiding citizens will obey anyway while criminals do as they damned well please).
Let me state here and now that I am actually against the whole premise of the bill, for reasons I’ll go into later on.
The calls for action have been claiming that this bill limits our free speech, is an attack on christian preachers (sorry if you preach that homosexuals are not worthy of life and someone takes you seriously you have helped incite them), though I admit this is a really tricky thing since free speech without self-responsibility can create havoc and harm, it is a fine line to walk between that and censorship (which I abhor). They also state it will include pedophiles (and possibly rapists) as a protected class under “sexual orientation”.
The bill does not define sexual orientation OR limit it to homosexuals, bi-sexuals, transvestites, etc. Apparently some in the House actually feel that since pedophilia is listed UNDER sexual disorders (along with those I’ve mentioned here) in the DSM-IV that they will be provided extra protection under the law from “attack”. The reasoning being given is that if a mother discovered her child were sexually molested, and she confronted the perpetrator and slapped him (actually he’d be lucky if that was all she did), he might only be charged with a misdemeanor while the mother could be charged with a felony.
Personally, I don’t think any person in their right mind or in good conscience would feel the mother was guilty of a worse crime than her child’s molester. Then again, knowing politicians and shyster lawyers just LOVE twisting common sense so hard you can’t recognize it anymore, I’m not wondering if these “panic” emails don’t have some merit.
First, what exactly defines a “Hate Crime”? I know in MY mind what that means, and I’m sure you do also, but for some reason the government feels the need to actually “define” it and provide special protections to certain groups of people:
Sec. 249. Hate crime acts
`(a) In General-
`(1) OFFENSES INVOLVING ACTUAL OR PERCEIVED RACE, COLOR, RELIGION, OR NATIONAL ORIGIN- Whoever, whether or not acting under color of law, willfully causes bodily injury to any person or, through the use of fire, a firearm, or an explosive or incendiary device, attempts to cause bodily injury to any person, because of the actual or perceived race, color, religion, or national origin of any person–
`(2) OFFENSES INVOLVING ACTUAL OR PERCEIVED RELIGION, NATIONAL ORIGIN, GENDER, SEXUAL ORIENTATION, GENDER IDENTITY, OR DISABILITY-
`(A) IN GENERAL- Whoever, whether or not acting under color of law, in any circumstance described in subparagraph (B), willfully causes bodily injury to any person or, through the use of fire, a firearm, or an explosive or incendiary device, attempts to cause bodily injury to any person, because of the actual or perceived religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability of any person–
Is it just me, or does this not also define “crime” in general to you too? We already have laws on the books regarding the fact that it IS against the law to attack another person; whether by fist, club, gun, knife, whatever else you might think of using. So right here, I want to know why an attack on me as a white, heterosexual female not be considered as terrible a crime as someone else? Seriously, why should crime that kills or injures me, or anyone else not included in this “protected class” not be prosecuted to the same extent?
This bill will require jurors to now also consider what a person was feeling or thinking to determine if it is a “hate crime” or just a “crime”. Aren’t all crimes hate crimes of some sort?
This bill really just expands Federal authority in these cases. I’m not sure that is necessary as any State is free to request help from the feds at any time in any situation IF they so desire.
Another good breakdown of this bill can be found here. In particular the section under additional views which spells out the objections of some of the House members nicely.
In case you haven’t figured it out yet, my main objection to this bill is that it goes against our 14th Amendment to the Constitution:
Passed by Congress June 13, 1866. Ratified July 9, 1868.
All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.
Note that last sentence: nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.
Now it just seems to me that by making special laws for some people, when that same crime committed against anyone else would not be pursued as hard perhaps, we are denying other segments of the citizenry “equal protection of the laws”.
And THAT is my whole problem with this bill. I’m sorry, but a homosexual being beat up or killed for being gay is no more serious a crime than some white straight guy being beat up and killed for no good reason.
Sorry, murder is murder, assault is assault and one’s religion, sex, etc should have NOTHING to do with how it is investigated and prosecuted……………..Justice is supposed to be blind and this bill removes that blindfold and creates a new form of discrimination.
That’s how I see it.