Thursday, August 19, 2004

SOMETIMES I HATE IT WHEN I'M RIGHT

A few weeks ago, I posted about the Spanish Civil War as a historical proto-type of contemporary American society. My observation was that modern societies that become highly polarized between faith and secularism, generally end up in religious persecution. The progession moves from anti-religious rhetoric to "legal" oppression of the Church.

[drumroll, please]

And heeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeere it is!


SB 1234, Sen. Sheila Kuehl's (D-L.A.) expansion of California's "hate crimes" laws, passed another hurdle last week as the Assembly Appropriations Committee voted the bill to the floor. The full Assembly will vote on this measure soon. All bills must pass their second house by August 31 to survive and be sent to the governor for his signature or veto.

This bill expands laws relating to hate crimes and enhances punishment for hate crimes including civil penalties. It changes the definition of "hate crimes" including the definition of "gender." Under SB 1234, "Gender means sex, and includes a person’s gender identity and gender related appearance and behavior whether or not stereotypically associated with the person’s assigned sex at birth.” The bill provides that the terms "culturally diverse" and "cultural diversity" include but are not limited to “disability, gender, nationality, religion, and sexual orientation” issues.

"Hate crimes" laws create different classes of victims and criminalize thoughts rather than actions. Under SB 1234, individuals could claim that someone expressing their sincerely held beliefs presents an "intimidating" threat, punishable under the law. Even various forms of peaceful conduct, such as prayer vigils outside abortion clinics, could potentially be considered a "threat of force."


Rats, huh? Just keep telling yourself in the coming years, "The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church. The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church. The blood of the martyrs..."

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