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Southern Religion

Hate crime

The Anti-Defamation League has called for a new Georgia hate crimes law in the wake of the beating of Army reservist Tashawnea Hill at a Cracker Barrel restaurant in Morrow, Georgia. The state had such a law but it was tossed out as unconstitutionally vague in 2004.

Errin Haines of the Associated Press wrote of the beating

The Justice Department’s civil rights division in Washington has initiated a probe into Hill’s case. Police say Tashawnea Hill was kicked and punched Sept. 9 as Troy D. West screamed racial slurs outside a Cracker Barrel restaurant in Morrow, about 15 miles southeast of Atlanta. Authorities say West, 47, became enraged when Hill told him to be careful after he nearly hit her daughter while opening the restaurant’s door.

The FBI is investigating whether federal civil rights laws were violated by the assault.

General concern about the matter and its status as a hate crime has apparently been muted. Social conservatives, when they become concerned, typically oppose hate crimes legislation. Ambivalence seems to be commonplace. And the beat goes on.

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September 21, 2009 - Posted by | Crime, Law

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