Posted on August 29, 2021

Hate Crimes 101

James P. Lubinskas, American Renaissance, November 2000

Responding to Hate Crimes: A Police Officer’s Guide to Investigation and Prevention, Bureau of Justice Assistance, 2000, 20-min. videotape

Recently, a few mainstream conservatives have begun to wonder if there is a double standard for hate crimes. Paul Weyrich and Richard Poe, writing respectively in the Washington Times and on, have noted the obvious: The media ignore black-on-white hate crimes but give massive coverage to white-on-black hate crimes. As Jared Taylor wrote in “The Color of Death,” the press has its own reasons for this, but there is evidence the police are being trained to the same double standard.

Responding to Hate Crimes is a 20-minute training video produced by the Bureau of Justice Assistance, an agency within the Department of Justice. Two booklets come with the video: a police officer “pocket guide” to the video and an instructor’s guide. These materials are the official DOJ word on investigating hate crimes, and police agencies around the country have received more than 14,000 sets. What are police being taught?

The video is narrated by Joseph Carter, Vice Chairman of the International Association of Chiefs of Police Civil Rights Committee and Chief of Police for Oak Bluffs, Massachusetts. Chief Carter is black, which seems to be his main qualification as a specialist in hate crimes. He introduces 17 short dramatizations of hate crimes, in which thugs do such things as harass Third-World immigrants, taunt Asian shopkeepers, burn black churches, and deface synagogues. All the miscreants are whites (usually with shaved heads and giving ‘white power’ salutes), with the exception of two blacks who taunt an Asian shopkeeper. None of the victims is white. The video says homosexuals and even the handicapped can be hate crime targets but never mentions white victims.

Varieties of hate crimes reported in 1998

Aside from these scenes, the video is essentially a review of basic police work. It reminds officers to secure the scene, ensure safety, identify evidence, and arrest perpetrators if there is enough evidence. Chief Carter mentions the need to get interpreters for non-English speaking victims — perhaps a signal for police to look more closely at crimes against non-white immigrants — but never suggests there might have to be interpreters for non-English speaking perpetrators. The video urges officers to help victims contact community support groups. Presumably, they send Hispanics to MALDEF or La Raza, blacks to the NAACP, and homosexuals to local activist groups. Where do they send white victims?

The instructor’s guide promotes the same biases. It lists questions officers are likely to ask, and offers answers for instructors. If a policeman says there are no hate crimes in his community, the instructor is to reply that they can happen anywhere:

The country’s experience in recent years underscores this point: James Byrd, Jr., an African-American man, was dragged behind a truck and killed in Jasper, Texas, a small, rural town; Matthew Sheppard, a gay student, was beaten and left to die on the outskirts of Laramie, Wyoming, a large college town; Ricky Birdsong, an African-American man, was shot to death in suburban Chicago by a man who had first shot at several Jewish men and boys and then at a Chinese-American couple; and Joseph Santos Ileto, a Filipino-American mail carrier, was shot to death in Los Angeles by a man who previously had opened fire at a Jewish community center. What police departments have found in communities like ours is that the lack of reported hate crimes often means that citizens are not reporting them or officers are failing to identify bias indicators — not that hate crimes never occur.

Needless to say, every perpetrator in this list is white. Somehow Reginald Denny and the people Colin Ferguson killed on the Long Island Rail Road don’t make the hate crimes hit parade. At one point the guide does concede there are anti-white hate crimes but says they are “far less common than hate crimes targeting persons of color.”

If someone asks whether hate crimes are ever hoaxes the official answer is:

Fabricated complaints occur but only very rarely. Police have found that victims often are reluctant to report hate crimes or even acknowledge that what appears to others to be a hate crime is, in fact, motivated by bias. The fear and isolation felt by hate crime victims more often leads to underreporting than to fabrication.

As Laird Wilcox has shown in his excellent monograph, Crying Wolf , hoaxes are far from rare.

The instruction guide concludes with three sample incidents to be used for discussion about how to identify and investigate a hate crime: a white drives his car across the lawn of a black family, two teenagers beat a man they think is homosexual, and an immigrant storekeeper has the windows in his shop broken. All perpetrators are understood to be white.

Reinforcing Bias

This video suggests the police and the media work to reinforce each other’s biases. Police are trained to assume hate crimes against whites are a minor problem, and they often appear reluctant to look for bias motivation when whites are victims. The media in turn downplay the few anti-white outrages the police report.

One result is that although hate crime laws theoretically protect whites they are rarely invoked against non-whites. In December, 1999, a black man forced a white woman into an alley at gunpoint, yelled racial slurs at her, punched her in the face and raped her. Police said it was not a hate crime. Last April, two blacks saw a white man with a black woman at a bar in New Jersey, and told the woman she should be with them instead. A surveillance camera caught them as they beat the white man unconscious, but this was not a hate crime either. Also in April, a black man slashed an eight-year-old white boy’s throat as he played in a residential neighborhood in Alexandria, Virginia. Not only have the police been reluctant to pursue the incident as a hate crime, they deliberately withheld the fact that the black attacker yelled racial slurs as he killed the boy.

Despite this squeamishness about classifying anti-white crime as “hate,” the FBI’s 1997 statistics reported 1,629 black hate crime suspects as opposed to 5,344 “white” suspects (this number is artificially inflated by including Hispanic perpetrators, whose numbers are not known). Given that there are about six times as many whites as blacks in the United States, blacks are, on a per capita basis, twice as likely as whites to commit officially-recognized hate crimes.

The real number of anti-white hate crimes is probably much higher. Every year blacks commit about 1.5 million violent crimes against whites (including Hispanics), whereas whites (including Hispanics) commit only about 170,000 such crimes against blacks. If anti-white violence were scrutinized for bias as carefully as anti-black violence, the FBI’s figures would surely change substantially.

Needless to say, there is essentially no public scrutiny of the built-in biases in the way hate crimes are identified and reported. Without such scrutiny, neither the police nor the media are likely to change their ways.