Hate Crimes Essay, Research Paper
Fear, anger and frustration. These are three themes that run throughout all hate groups.
Most hate groups form during times of economic hardship or social change. Certain groups of
people begin to blame another group for the reason of a major social or economical change.
After the Civil War, the South suffered from both economic hardship and drastic social
change. For centuries, the south had relied on slaves to harvest crops at plantations. When the
slaves were freed, the plantations weren?t being worked on anymore, causing the owners to loose
a lot of money. When this happened, six former Confederate soldiers started a hate group called
the Ku Klux Klan. During the post-Civil War era, the Klan was very popular among southern
whites. Their ignorance was feeding the fire that blacks were the root of their problem, when in
reality the white?s ignorance is the root of their own problems.
The Klan has since died down and risen numerous times with the start of many social
changes such as the women?s rights movement (1920?s) and the civil rights movement (1960?s).
Another large and devastating hate group is the neo-Nazis. These working-class people
blame all immigrants for taking jobs away from the whites. Their ignorance pushes them so far
as to violently attack and kill blacks, Jews, Hispanics, Asians, and homosexuals.
Hate crimes can happen anytime, anywhere. In a small Texas town of Jasper, Texas, 3
white men are under heavy guard after being accused of a murder of an innocent man. Shawn
Berry,23, Lawrence Brewer,31, and John King, 23, allegedly members of the extremist Aryan
Brotherhood, dragged a black man to his death behind a pick-up truck, ripping his body to
pieces. James Byrd, Jr., a 49 year-old, former vacuum cleaner salesman disabled by an arm
injury, was walking home from a party celebrating the wedding of his niece, when he was picked
up by the three white men, who offered him a ride. According to Berry, who informed on his
two companions, they drove to an isolated wood, and King was alleged to have said that he was
?fixing to scare the s**t out of that n****r.? James Byrd was beaten and kicked by the three
white men. Seemingly unconscious, he was chained by the ankles to a hook on the back of the
truck, which then pulled him about two miles along a narrow, winding asphalt road. His
belongings, a wallet and keys, were scattered in his wake, along with dentures and parts of his
body. The torso was found in a creek. Close by, empty beer cans were scattered on the grass.
James Byrd?s head, neck and right arm were discovered a mile away.
Hate crimes are not always committed against minorities. In Las Vegas, two Anti-Racist
Action members were murdered. According to reports in the Las Vegas Review-Journal and
from Anti-Racist Action in Columbus, the bodies of Daniel Shersty, 20, and Lin Newborn, 25,
were found in the desert 150 yards from each other. The bodies were located in an area of the
desert known for a place where Nazis target shoot. The two men were murdered in execution
Sometimes these horrible crimes occur within one?s own family. On the night of March
5, David and Bryan Freeman decided it was time to act. Time to act on the new beliefs they had
learned. Time to prove to their new friends that they were real soldiers of the racial war they
were told was coming. On that Sunday night, hate came to the Freeman house. The boys, ages
15 and 17, ambushed their mother in the downstairs hallway, stabbing and clubbing her until she
died. Then they went upstairs and did the same to their dad while he lay in his bed. Their little
brother Erik, 11, was asleep when the older brothers entered his room and beat him to death as
What would make people commit such horrendous crimes such as these? Why don?t you
ask Mark Thomas, a fascist organizer who operates a ?ministry for racists? in eastern
Pennsylvania. It was at this ?Aryan Nations of Pennsylvania? where the Freeman brothers were
taught by Mark Thomas that it was O.K. to hate. The brothers, along with hundreds of others
attended a Hitler Youth Festival last April where Mark Thomas taught them weapons skills on a
rifle range and other things of the sort. As a self declared reverend, Mark Thomas teaches a
twisted religious known as Christian Identity, which says that anyone that disagrees with white
supremacy is a traitor and must be destroyed.
Mark Thomas is a hatemonger who has encouraged the kind of violence that David and
Bryan Freeman displayed. The following is a quote from a recent Thomas document entitled
Statement of Purpose: ?The abortionists are professional murderers of children and will continue
to ply their satanic trade until God?s judgment is executed and their lives are taken. The
homosexual movement is immensely powerful and will continue to grow and corrupt our
children unless its leaders are put to death. Politicians who seek to disarm White Americans will
succeed unless courageous people who understand the meaning of the right to keep and bear
arms rise up and begin to shoot them. If nobody is willing to take up arms against tyranny, then
there is no purpose to even having a movement.?
Imagine the Freeman brothers sitting in a circle with other kids, very serious, being
taught this stuff. To understand the Freeman murders is to glimpse into the future. There will be
more like this.
On the good side of things, there ARE ways to fight racism and hate crimes. The easiest
thing to do is to speak out. Let yourself be heard. Don?t be afraid to express how you feel. Not
speaking out against racism and hate crimes is almost as bad as committing the crime yourself.
On July 17, in Brentwood, PA, the KKK tried to hold a rally. A total of 13 Klan
members, in full costume, stood on the street corners distributing racist, anti-Semitic literature in
an effort to reruit new members. A few people, mostly teen took the handouts, but a much more
common response during the Klan?s 1-hour stay was what a woman who drove by and responded
to their chants of ?white power? with ?White trash is more like it.? Another female motorist
yelled, ?Get out of here. We don?t want you?. ?Get a life? another man screamed. A woman
walking her daughter home from the community swimming pool told them to take their robes
off. ?Your a bunch of freaks? she said as she walked past them.
In another incident about 200 anti-Nazi demonstrators gathered outside of the home of
Jonas Stelmokas, who was once a member of a Lithuanian police force which helped Nazis kill
Jews during World War II. The demonstration marked the 67th anniversary of the beginning of
If you want to get involved in the fight against racism and hate crimes you can contact
STU (Stand To Unite) or ARA (Anti-Racist Action). Both groups are essentially the same thing
with a few minor differences. STU is an organization whose goal is to stop hatred and ignorance
like racism, sexism, homophobia, ect. Wether their actions be in the form of rallies or protests,
educating ourselves and others, uniting through social events, or by offering sympathy and
support to those affected by hate and hate crimes, their goal remains the same.
ARA is about taking direct action against the problems that lie in front of us today and
organizing to make a real change for tomorrow. Not changes that have the same problems
resurfacing with different people getting the short end of the stick, but solutions in which people
make the decisions that effect their lives and help build ?an anti-authoritarian egalitarian
society?. Anti-Racist Action is a multi-racial, anti-sexist, pro-gay organization dedicated to
fighting oppression in all it?s forms through direct action. ARA activists have been involved in
many struggles across the United States and Canada, ranging from shutting down Ku Klux Klan
rallies across the country; to developing civilian patrols, called Copwatch (to fight police
brutality); from working to free political prisoners; to defending clinics from anti-choice attacks.
ARA PRINCIPLES OF UNITY
1) Fight against racism, sexism, homophobia, imperialism, and other forms of oppression.
2) No reliance on the cops or the courts.
3) Non-sectarian defense of arrested anti-fascist organizations.
4) Same time, same place direct action against fascist mobilizations.
So don?t just sit there, do something. Exercise your freedom of speech and contribute to
the struggle against racism and hate crimes in your community.
To contact Stand To Unite write to:
Stand To Unite
PO Box 7382
Doylestown, PA 18901