IAP Photo/Morrow Police Department
A hate crime, also known as a bias crime, is a criminal offense committed against a person, property, or society that is motivated, in whole or in part, by the offender’s bias against a race, religion, disability, sexual orientation, or ethnicity/national origin.
According to Crime in the United States 2004
In response to mounting national concern over crimes motivated by bias, Congress enacted the Hate Crime Statistics Act of 1990. The law directed the Attorney General to collect data “about crimes that manifest evidence of prejudice based on race, religion, sexual orientation, or ethnicity.” The Attorney General delegated the responsibility for developing and implementing a hate crime data collection program to the Director of the FBI, who assigned the task to the Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program. In September 1994, Congress passed the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act, which amended the Hate Crime Statistics Act to include both physical and mental disabilities. The UCR Program began collecting statistics on offenses motivated by bias against physical and mental disabilities in January 1997. The Church Arson Act of 1996 mandated that hate crime data collection become a permanent part of the UCR Program.
Troy D West - Associated Press PhotoTroy Dale West of Poulan, GA was arrested because he attacked Tasha Hill after she asked him to "be careful" at a Cracker Barrel restaurant on Sept. 9th around 7:30pm. I reviewed the police report and Mr. West was charged with battery, disorderly conduct and cruelty to children.
I paused when I read the charges and thought to myself ‘Damn! What is considered a hate crime?' I thought about the person prosecuting this case, who happens to be a white woman. I thought, if I didn’t know her from Adam, and I saw her outside of Blue Seas restaurant (owned by the N.O.I) over on Delowe St., and I called her all kinds of racial slurs and beat her down, I wondered if she would think that was a hate crime. I even laughed when I thought about how if it had been a Black Woman, how the police department would figure out how to make it a hate crime since I am a Black Man. I know people are going to say, ‘Why do you invoke race into this matter?’ My answer is, because the law is based on a biased system that treats Black people differently than everybody else. Like the difference between crack versus cocaine, the testing of marijuana and not crystal meth to get a job, and etc.
The biggest problem I have with this whole situation is how Black people are treated like a Black life just isn’t worth much at all. This happens over and over again, from a sister 90 years old getting gun down in her home by crooked White male officers to young Black men having the ‘book’ thrown at them for out-dated Georgia laws still being on the books that were designed to lock us up during Jim Crow.
The prosecutor moved slowly because this happened on the 9th and she didn’t come to make a public cry until Reverend Derrick Rice and community activist David Bozeman came to her office and demanded more action.
I spoke to Reverend Rice by phone and he said “The prosecutor actually had an attitude with us for showing up at her office.”
I thought to myself, ‘Wow is this how we treat soldiers who fight for this country? I guess things haven’t changed that much since World War 1, 2 or 3.’
We have to, as Asiatic people, start to think on defending ourselves. Dr. Khalid Muhammad, who taught me about self-defense, mentored me as a young man. I sat at the foot of Qaumi Tore at Savior’s Day and he told me about how the Black Panthers understood how we needed our own army and political party. These men instilled in me the importance of getting proper training to defend yourself. I am an artist and I went to school to learn the art of taking pictures and capturing images on video and film. A lot of people don’t understand that fighting is also an art. That’s why it’s called Martial Arts when you are being trained to defend yourself properly.
America isn’t changing because we have a Black president so we still need our own army and our own political party. I also feel we need our own State but that’s another whole book coming soon. The bottom line is people hate us because they can’t be us. Hating Black anything is a conscious and unconscious movement that has been going on in this country for over 500 years. It didn’t turn into hell overnight and we won’t get heaven back when one man shows up whether it is Jesus or Muhammad, so we need to except our destiny and defend ourselves by any means necessary. I think as men we need to protect our women and children a whole lot better than what we are doing. The first way to do that is to seek GOD then purchase a rifle and learn how to properly fight and defend ourselves because only cowards run in gangs. When you’re full of fear and afraid, you can’t smile at other people or be true to your natural righteous nature. I think this shows Black Men that no one is scared of you but yourself and no one respects you. If they did they definitely wouldn’t disrespect our women in front of our children like this man did.
I offer a challenge to all tough Black Men to go to Morrow, Georgia and let folks know they can’t touch our women and not face consequences. I think we should go in the busloads and let ‘Crackers’ at Cracker-barrel know how we feel. I’m for non-violence and a firm believer in never being the aggressor but once you put your hands on me, my woman or my child, I must fight until the death. Until truth prevails my eyes will be watching.