Many of you may have seen this from Hollywood last week:
An effigy of US Republican vice-presidential nominee Sarah Palin hanging by a noose as part of a Halloween display has drawn severe criticism, but local officials said the homeowner was covered by free speech rights.
“We have been getting some phone calls complaining about it but if (the homeowner) isn’t in violation of municipal code we have no reason to cite them,” West Hollywood spokeswoman Helen Goss said.”
“People have First Amendment rights (to free speech),” Goss said. “I would speculate that if it’s part of a Halloween display then its political satire.”
And then yesterday:
Two men have been arrested in connection with an effigy of Sen. Barack Obama that was hung outside a building at the University of Kentucky in Lexington, police said Thursday.
Authorities found a life-size effigy of the Democratic presidential candidate hanging from a tree outside the school’s Mines and Minerals building on Wednesday morning, police said.
“This was a serious incident. It caused a lot of wounds to be opened from racial tension,” Monroe said. …
Personally, I think both sides here ought to be ashamed of themselves. But just to make sure I’m understanding this correctly:
Hanging an effigy of Sarah Palin from a noose? Why, that’s just chortle-provoking, side-splitting, satirical hilarity right there, all in good fun. And legal, too. First Amendment rights and whatnot.
Hanging an effigy of The One? Latent KKK tendencies coming to the surface in these little Hitler clones! And illegal, too. First Amendment rights? Never heard of them.
The moral of the story? The next time you feel like swinging an effigy from a noose to make a political point, pick a white female doll to hang. Bonus points if the doll represents a Republican.
Exit question: When did the “free speech rights” of the first group stop existing for the second group?
UPDATE: Thanks to the alert commenter MG for pointing to this story. Apparently, the whole thing was made up by the girl, and now she faces trouble for concocting the story. So, heh heh, disregard the rant below!
Here is a bona fide cornucopia of topics, all in one story. From Texas:
Melanie Bowers, 13, and her parents walked into Athens High School Monday afternoon to talk to campus police. They were hoping to get some answers.
“It never should have happened in the first place. The whole assignment was a silly assignment and they should have contacted us immediately after it happened,” said J.R. Bowers, Melanie’s father.
It was an assignment for history class–to make a protest sign for or against an issue, and Melanie said she chose illegal immigration. Her sign read, “If you love our nation, stop illegal immigration.” Somehow, Melanie said the sign got passed around lunch and angered a group of Latino students.
“I didn’t know any of these people,” she said. One young [student], she claimed, jumped on her back and he put her in a choke hold. “We have brick walls in the middle school and he slammed my face on the bricks.”
Melanie said a group of boys also threatened to rape and kill her. Eventually, the boys let her go and when she went for help, she was ordered back to class, and told she could not call her parents, she said.
“They handled this wrong, you know, they put a child back in danger,” said J.R. Bowers. “It was a very racially motivated crime.”
1. Why in the world did the government school not allow a girl who had just been attacked, not to mention threatened with rape and murder, to call her parents?
2. I thought criminal aliens were supposed to be “peaceful” and “just looking for a better way of life”? Or does “better way of life” mean “attacking gringo girls”? Real tough hombrés, si?
3. Does this qualify as a so-called “hate crime”, or is the victim (for those of you on the left, the victim here is the girl) a little too Caucasian for this to be a “hate crime”?
4. These dumb#sses wound up proving her point, didn’t they?
From the People’s Republic of Taxachusetts:
A Boston firefighter is mending from what could have been deadly stab wounds he suffered early yesterday morning when he was allegedly jumped in East Boston while off duty by a group of Hispanic males who told him they “don’t want any gringo here.”
Though police are not classifying the incident as racially fueled, the Boston Police Department’s Community Disorders Unit is investigating. The 32-year-old jake, whose name officials were not releasing, is white.
Let me get this straight: some Latino gangbangers beat up a white guy and said they “don’t want any gringo here”, and police don’t see any racial aspect? Of course not…it’s open season on white guys, right?
This is one of many reasons I despise so-called “hate crimes” legislation. The main reason is because it criminalizes thought, i.e. it is worse to assault or kill someone because of their race than because of other factors (they dress funny, they have more money, etc.). The second biggest reason is because punishment invariably (as this case shows) will not be applied consistently, but in a politically correct manner. All of us with at least two functioning brain cells knew that would happen, and we were correct.
My friends, I have mentioned on numerous occasions that so-called “hate crimes” laws are nothing more than criminalizing thoughts, not actions. After all, we should punish violent criminals for commiting acts of violence, irrespective of their motives (wealth envy, bigotry, etc.). Lo and behold, this is an example of what happens when you criminalize thought:
PARKER, Colo. — A seventh-grade Sagewood Middle School student is facing disciplinary action from school administrators for compiling a list of those he dislikes.
“I can confirm to you that a student did indeed make a list that contained the names of fewer than five students. As a result, appropriate action was taken with the student, “ said Ralph Montgomery, Sagewood Middle School principal.
Montogmery said the specifics of what disciplinary actions the student is facing will not be released due to privacy laws.
Administrators became aware of the rumors Nov. 21 during the holiday break, which prompted an investigation and the distribution of the letter written by Montogmery, said Whei Wong, spokeswoman for Douglas County.
A letter was sent to parents of Sagewood Middle School students Friday “because of the rumors that were circulating,” said Whei Wong, spokeswoman for Douglas County.
“I believe a student came forward about the list. Claimed to have seen the list a week prior to telling any adult about it,” said Wong when asked about how school administrators learned of the letter.
In the letter sent to parents, Montogmery wrote “I want to assure you of the safety of your children while at Sagewood. I can tell you, Sagewood leaders have worked closely with Douglas County School District security to ensure that your students and our staff are safe. We are safe.”
Wong said the parents of those mentioned in the list were notified.
“We determined there apparently was no threat or intent to harm anyone,” said Wong
Wong was not sure when the seventh-grade boy would be allowed to return to school.
Got that? It’s now a no-no in government schools for you to dislike other kids, or at the very least, writing down the names on your own paper of kids you don’t like. What’s the remedy here, to force all kids to like everyone? Un-freakin’-believable!
I have always maintained that so-called “hate crimes” are nothing more than the criminalizing of thoughts. This incident strengthens my point to unassailability. Via Michelle Malkin:
A pictorial pop quiz for you. Which of these is a hate crime in America?
A) Submerging a crucifix in a jar of urine.
B) Burning the American flag.
C) Putting a Koran in a toilet.
Each is offensive and tasteless in its own way. But only one is a hate crime in the eyes of the law — C) — and 23-year-old Stanislav Shmulevich of Brooklyn faces jail time for it. He’s a Pace University student arrested on Friday on hate-crime charges after he threw a Koran in a toilet at Pace University on two separate occasions, according to police.
Charles Johnson at LGF has been in contact with Shmulevich. He reports that the student has been charged with two felonies, criminal mischief and aggravated harassment. Allahpundit has a thorough legal review.
Mark Steyn muses about the flushed Koran: “Obviously Mr Shmulevich should have submerged it in his own urine, applied for an NEA grant and offered it to the Whitney Biennial.”
Actually, no. The NEA would have turned Shmulevich in to the police, too. Now, if he had submerged a Bible in urine or coated a Torah in cow dung and submitted it for a federal grant, he’d be sitting pretty–and facing rave New York Times editorials instead of time behind bars.
Considering this is the same college that forbade Jewish student organization Hillel from showing the film Obsession because it offended Muslim sensibilities, this should come as no surprise. However, as Andrew Bostom observes about the Koran:
What role do Koranic injunctions themselves—eternal and beyond criticism (least of all by non-Muslims)—play in inciting “criminal mischief and aggravated mischief”, and much more heinous crimes against humanity, including jihad genocide, and the destruction of non-Muslim religious, cultural, and political institutions?
In other words, why is it that flushing a Koran in a toilet is considered inciting “criminal and aggravated mischief”, but the Koran being used to incite Muslim violence against non-Muslims doesn’t constitute the same thing or worse? Answer: suicidal political correctness.
From Harry Jackson:
Last Thursday, I nervously entered C-SPAN’s Washington, D.C. Studios. The program format normally includes remarks from different points of view, call-in responses from its national audience, and commentary from its host. It was a great opportunity for me to speak to the nation concerning the encroachment that a new law, HR 1592 “Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2007,” represents to our freedom of speech and freedom of religion. This law promises to grant protected status to “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” – essentially mandating unequal protection under the law, which will pave the way for criminalization of thoughts and religious beliefs contrary to politically correct ideology.
I was opposed to this legislation for two reasons. First, as a Christian I am aware that this kind of legislation has opened the door to the arrest, fines, or incarceration of Christians in Sweden, Australia, Canada, and the U.S. In fact, in Philadelphia in 2004 such an incident occurred during a protest rally at a gay convention. A 75-year old grandmother of three was arrested, jailed, and charged under existing state hate crimes law for attempting to share the gospel of Jesus Christ. Ironically, no one was hurt, wounded, or even intimidated by her actions. If anything, law enforcement officials sent the citizens of their state a message – “Gays can protest, intimidate and harass anyone anywhere but Christians had better not speak.” HR-1592 would embolden this kind of law enforcement.
So-called “hate crimes” treat victims of crimes unequally under the law. As the illustration above shows, even non-violent crimes are prosecuted unequally. Basically, you have to be in one of the “favored groups” or you’re out of luck. Killing someone for having too much money wouldn’t be nearly as bad as killing someone for being black. Repeatedly punching and kicking someone for being a Chrstian could be punished much less harshly than intimidating someone for being gay. Only in lefty la-la land does that make any sense.
In short, “hate crimes” laws criminalize thought, nothing more and nothing less.
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