We at the IWF are opposed to the idea of “hate crimes”–because we believe that every crime is a hate crime, motivated by loathing and contempt for the victim. We don’t believe in giving preferential treatment to some crime victims but not others by increasing the penalties when the victim belongs to a racial or sexual minority.

Still, hate crimes are on the books in many jurisdictions, and at the very least, we want to see them prosecuted fairly, with racially motivated attacks on whites and anti-heterosexual attacks on straights given the same legal treatment as they’d be given if the victims were black or gay. That’s why I’ve been following with special interest fave-blogstress La Shawn Barber’s account of the New York City police’s refusal to bring hate-crime charges against members of a gang of 30 black youths of both sexes in Brooklyn who beat four white girls bloody on March 30 ago while shouting, “White cracker!” and “Black power!” in their faces. La Shawn wrote:

“Beating white females and calling them ‘white crackers.’ Sounds like a hate crime to me. Then again, who am I but a reasonable person living in the real world and not a pre-programmed politically correct grievance shopper living in a socialist utopia inside my own head?”

Finally, as La Shawn now reports, city prosecutors overruled the police and decided that the incident, in which five of the alleged perpetrators were arrested, should indeed be treated as a hate crime. Being juveniles, they won’t be charged in adult criminal court but in the family-court system. As La Shawn writes:

“I think the very concept ‘hate crime’ is absurd, but since these ridiculous laws are on the books, they must be applied.”

The New York Post’s account of the incident is harrowing:

“The attack took place on March 30 in Marine Park as six 15-year-old Catholic schoolgirls were shooting hoops on Fillmore Avenue and Marine Parkway at about 3 p.m.

“Police sources said six to eight black girls from Marine Park JHS marched into the middle of the white girls’ three-on-three basketball game and demanded the court.

“Some adults intervened and the alleged assailants walked away only to return three or four times with a progressively larger gang, the victims said.

“Finally, a posse of 20 to 30 girls set upon the victims with kicks and punches, while shouting, ‘White crackers,’ ‘Black power,’ and, curiously, ‘Martin Luther King.’

“‘I thought I was going to die,’ one girl told The Post. ‘At first they just walked on our court. We didn’t say anything. But they kept coming back. It looked like the crowd got bigger every time they came back.’

“Several girls ran into traffic and another fled to a nearby house to ring a doorbell for help only to be dragged off the stoop by her hair, the victims said.

“A girl’s mother said she drove over to the playground during the assault.

“‘I drove into it, because I didn’t have my house keys,’ the woman said. ‘I saw havoc on the streets when I drove up. My daughter said, “Ma they’re going to kill us.”‘

“She managed to drive back into the park and collect the other five girls. Two girls were taken to a local hospital. One suffered a torn muscle in the forearm, had a chunk of her hair pulled out, and received a CAT scan because of kicks to the head.

“The second suffered a broken nose and a black eye.”

La Shawn comments on the case with as much sorrow as anger:

“We are witnesses to the beginning of a life in the criminal justice system for most of these black teenagers. Today they’re tried in Family Court; tomorrow, criminal court. A few won’t stop at beating people. They’ll escalate to murdering people, and sadly, for the most ignorant of reasons. This is life in the amoral jungle, and unless someone or something intervenes, their lives will follow a predictable pattern of criminality. I hope each one is prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law with the most harshest sentence allowed.

“It won’t rehabilitate them, I suspect, but at least there will be a few less timebombs roaming the streets.”