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The Alarming Patterns of Hate Crime in America

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The Alarming Patterns of Hate Crime in America

As defined by the Hate Crimes Statistics Act, hate crimes are “crimes that manifest evidence of prejudice based on race, gender and gender identity, religion, disability, sexual orientation, or ethnicity.”

2003-2006:
63% Race
27% Ethnicity
16% Sexual Orientation
15% Gender/Gender Identity
10% Religion
10% Disability

2007-2011:
54% Race
30% Ethnicity
21% Religion
18% Sexual Orientation
18% Gender/Gender Identity
14% Disability

When we look at the total number of hate crimes, things get complicated quickly.

2012 FBI Report:
5,796

2012 National Crime Victim Survey:
293,800

2012 Bureau of Justice Statistics:
293,790

The difference? FBI data is aggregated from voluntary law enforcement agencies, whereas NCVS and BJS data are based on surveyed victims.

Here’s how some of the 2012 FBI data breaks down:

Alabama — 6 total reported hate crimes
Mississippi — 4 total reported hate crimes
Hawaii — 0 total reported hate crimes
Tulsa, Oklahoma — 0 total reported hate crimes
Miami, Florida — 0 total reported hate crimes
Tampa, Florida — 0 total reported hate crimes
80 other cities with populations greater than 100,000 — 0 total reported hate crimes

But among states with the highest rate of active hate groups are:

Mississippi
Alabama
Oklahoma

States with the most hate groups are:

California
Florida
New York
New Jersey
Pennsylvania
Texas
Tennessee
Georgia
Ohio
Virginia

The most represented hate groups are:

Neo Nazi
Racist Skinhead
White Nationalist
Black Separatist
KKK
Neo-Confederate
Christian Identity

But hate groups’ collective crimes might be on the decline. Instead, we’re experiencing the rise of the lone wolf.

2009-2015 Hate Violence and Domestic Terrorism:
74% carried out by 1 person
90% carried out by 1 or 2 people
1 act every 34 days

As the Southern Poverty Law Center reports, “Authorities have had far more success penetrating plots concocted by several people than individuals who act on their own…the lone wolf’s chief asset is the fact that no one else knows of his plans for violence and they are therefore exceedingly difficult to disrupt.”

Hate crimes are also becoming increasingly violent — which includes simple assault and robbery — with an especially disarming uptick in “serious violent crimes,” which include rape, sexual assault, robbery, and aggravated assault:

2003-2006:
84% violent
23% serious violent

2007-2011:
92% violent
29% serious violent

They’re also taking place in ostensibly safe and/or public areas:

33% victim’s home
16% commercial venue
24% parking lot/street/public transportation

Police aren’t the only ones under-reporting. The percent of hate crime victims who don’t report to police is also on the rise:

2003-2006:
52%

2007-2011:
60%

Among the most popular reasons:

“Not important enough”
“No insurance gain”
“Afraid of reprisal”
“Advised not to report”
“Police could not or would not help”
“Dealt with another way”

2003-2006 Incidents that ended in arrests:
9%

2007-2011 Incidents that ended in arrests:
4%

But perhaps the most telling fact is this: hate crime rates have remained steady over time, or at least since the HCSA was passed in 1990, which for the first time required governments to record hate crime numbers. Unfortunately, the problem may be changing, but it’s not going away.

Hate Crimes

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