American Family Association of
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
CONTACT: Diane Gramley 1.814.437.5355 or 1.814.271.9078
Anti-Hate Group Commends President Bush for Veto Threat of Defense Bill if Hate Crimes Amendment Remains
“The hate crimes bill or as it is now -- Amendment 2067 to the Defense Reauthorization bill -- is a bad piece of legislation. Among other issues is the federalization of each and every local and state crime and the use of the Commerce Clause to validate the provisions in the bill,” noted Diane Gramley, president of the statewide AFA of PA.
Double jeopardy – being tried twice for the same crime – also poses a problem under this bill. Prosecution can be undertaken by the
According to a November 2004 20/20 program the murder of Matthew Shepherd was not a hate crime, but a robbery attempt gone bad. Yet, he has become the poster child of hate crime proponents. His murderers are each serving a life sentence. The prosecutor would have sought the death penalty, but Shepherd’s parents oppose it. What greater punishment could have been handed down even with a hate crimes law in place? None!
FBI statistics do not support Senator Kennedy’s claim that “crimes motivated by bias is sufficiently serious (and) widespread.” Of the 7,160 single-bias incidences 14.2% or 1017 were motivated by sexual orientation bias. Intimidation was the highest reported “hate crime” at 48.9%. There were six ‘hate crime murders,’ none of which were based on ‘sexual orientation bias.’ These numbers are miniscule when compared to overall crimes in the
“We agree with President Bush that this bill is overly broad. Actually, hate crimes legislation is a bad idea . . . period. There are already laws against murder, assault and property damage; hate crime laws try to get into the mind of the perpetrator to determine their thoughts during the commission of the crime. President Bush is right in making his veto threat,” concluded Gramley.
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