Comments about ‘Amish guilty of hate crimes in Ohio beard-cuttings’

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Published: Friday, Sept. 21 2012 1:05 a.m. MDT

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IndependentLiberal
Salt Lake City, UT

Anyone else wonder why when Mitt strong-armed and cut another man’s hair off it was spun as a youthful prank whereas some of these folks might go to jail for some time.

Quagthistle
Utica, KS

No, because it's all in the context. If you took someone's old baseball cap (as a prank) and burned it, they'd probably just chuckle about it and get a new baseball cap. If you stole a Jewish kippah that'd been handed down for three generations and burned it, they might very well bring you up on hate crime charges. It's one thing to play a hair-cutting prank on someone who does not attach high religious importance to facial hair. It's an entirely different thing to burst into a home, grab people out of bed while their families are screaming, and humiliate them by cutting hair they believe to have sacred importance because you don't like their religious views. It would be like a group of athiests bursting into devout evangelicals' homes to take their cross necklaces and melt them into anti-Christian symbols in front of them. It's the intent to cause emotional distress and humiliation that makes it a hate crime. Freedom of religion doesn't give anyone the right to abuse another. Ever.

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