Simply effecting hostility and offence. Hate crimes from a sociological perspective is being treated as any criminally related offence toward a person or groups of person and property motivated by hatred and prejudice with someone due to their race and colour, ethnicity and nationality. Criminal offences towards religion, gender and gender identity, sexual orientation and disability are also classified as hate crimes. From experience, hate crimes may take many forms such as physical assault, damage to property, offensive letters and phone calls, verbal insults, abusive gestures and the familiar bullying in schools.
Impact of hate crimes to victims range from economic losses, physical, psychological and self- isolation. This paper aims to critically assess the impact of hate crimes to victims and society as a whole. Impact on nationality or race Author Nathan Hall (2005) in his book Hate Crimes said that hate crimes can cause devastating effect to victims and those of other individuals of a race who could be potential victims and the society as a whole (p. 66). The author mentioned further that hate crimes can produce far long and lasting psychological pain than normal crimes. Authors Craig,
Henderson and Sloan in 2003 as cited by Hall (2005) argues that victims of racial hate crimes experience a range of unique reactions different from victims of other crimes and other form of hate crimes. First, racial hate crime were done as a result of hatred to a member of a race and the possibility of repeat offence is always lingering in the mind of the members of the race (p. 68). This is so because the crime was done for the sole reason that the individual belong to a certain race; the appearance of the race cannot be hidden to escape another possible hate crime.
This point to the fact that the trauma of stress will always linger in the mind. Second, according to the authors, the hatred is always pointed to the stereotyped minority group for example the black African race. The perpetrators of racial hate crimes have all the excuses and courage to do the hate crimes due to the fact that 2 the race is stereotyped and doesn’t enjoy much protection from the government. As a result, constant fear is always in the mind of every individual of the race which may result to great divisiveness from the rest of the society.
The lingering fear may result to civil strife as the minority race’ last resort is to depend themselves in the light of government’s failure to protect the race being just a minority race within the country. Kaushal, et al. , in 2007 investigated the effect of September 11, 2001 terrorist attack among the first and second generation Arab and Muslim men and women in the U. S. The investigation revealed that the 9/11 attack did not affect significantly the employment and hours of work but resulted in the decline of their real wage.
Moreover, the authors reported that there was a decline in interstate migration of Arab and Muslim men. Although it was not mentioned by the authors, it is obvious that a widespread psychological fear was instilled among Arab and Muslims as a result of stereotyping brought about by holding and investigation by the FBI of a number of Muslims and Arab related to the suspect Osama bin Laden, being a Muslim. The psychological fear and trauma which for sure will stay in their mind forever resulted primarily to reduced interstate travel and economic loss in terms of earning opportunities among Arab and Muslims.
The most devastating effect among Muslim and Arab society is the ever-present trauma that sooner or later they will be rounded up and questioned harshly by the authorities just like what happened to their compatriots and may result to extra-ordinary rendition and ultimately the loss of their life. Impact on Religious Groups Members of a specific religious group bound themselves together with strings of belief that what they worship is the best among the best in the world. There were instances that religious beliefs can turn a group to fanaticism and believe that they were the chosen few to survive and sow their beliefs to the rest of the humanity. A hate crime perpetrated to one of the members normally will have a profound effect to others due to the fact that they function as one body only.
The website empowermentzone . com in 1997 reported that hate crimes on religion commonly affect the whole community having a common religious 3 practice and beliefs. In this type of hate crime, the target can be an individual but the whole congregation is affected because the hate crime commonly is done on community institutions and the entire group of religious followers as in the case of June 20, 1995 burning of Macedonia Baptist Church and June 20, 1995 burning of an African-American church Mount Zion AME in Greelyville, South Carolina.