Saturday, August 23, 2008

So why are there so few hate crimes?

Seattle's hate crimes more common than thought Well there are more than you think (see the headline) but there are problems.
From July to November 2006, police had no record of hate crimes. That bucked the trend, so auditors delved more deeply and uncovered six reports that had not been forwarded to the Bias Crimes Coordinator, a detective who investigates and logs such reports in a database.
Although 6 is not a large number it points up systematic reporting problems. There are others.

The two highest category of hate crimes - in order - in Seattle are against blacks and against gays. It doesn't stop there. These crimes happened in virtually all sections of that city, but were concentrated downtown and in one of the entertainment districts - Capital Hill.

You can't solve a problem if you ignore it. And the media (and it appears the police, to some extent) ignore the problem of hate crimes. For the media's part it is a fact that something that happens all the time, isn't news. But that is a rationalization, not a reason, and it doesn't apply to the cops. And whether or not you think there should be additional punishment - I don't particularly - for hate crimes, they are a problem.

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