Republicans Rally Behind Hate Crime Legislation

As I’ve said before, I’m no fan of hate crime legislation. Those types of laws legally raise the importance of one group of people over another, which is wrong. Additionally, they punish crimes based on perceived motivation, making the reason for a crime more important than the crime itself.

Last week the House voted on H.R. 3541, the Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act (PRENDA), which criminalizes gender selection as the reason for getting an abortion. Anyone who signs a form saying the reason is something else can still have the abortion because H.R. 3541 only criminalizes the motive, not the procedure.

On top of that, it makes it a crime for doctors to not report people suspected of getting an abortion for the wrong reasons. Doctors who fail to do so could be imprisoned for a year. Pay attention to this; it’s a prison sentence for inaction.

Embracing stupid hate crime legislation is something that shouldn’t be done, but this is an election year. The Republicans are trying to make the Democrats look like they hate women. I’m no fan of the Democrats’ agenda, but come on. Are we really going to buy into the concept that a major political party in our nation hates women?

We’ve got record levels of deficit spending. We’ve got a failed monetary policy that’s weakening our currency. We’ve got wars all over the globe that we can’t afford. We’ve got coming problems in the health care industry. We’ve got so many issues that should be at the center of debate in this election year, and the GOP is wasting time trying to criminalize motive.

Fortunately, this bill failed to pass in the House. Though we don’t have the problem of seeing this legislation go before the Senate, we still have the problem of a majority of both parties focused on the wrong issues in a critical election year. Congressman Justin Amash from Michigan, who opposed this bill, summed up the issue very well. This quote from Amash reflects my sentiments exactly:

I’m pro-life, and I think all abortion should be illegal. But Congress should not criminalize thought. And this bill won’t stop a single abortion if it becomes law. Every person seeking an abortion simply will sign a form stating her motive is not the sex of the baby. Those of us who are pro-life should demand more from Congress. While we waste time on stuff like this, genuine legislation to protect life is ignored.

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