Are We Paying Enough Attention to Hate Crimes Against Women? | Not in Our Town

Are We Paying Enough Attention to Hate Crimes Against Women?

 In August 2009, Bob Herbert wrote an article in the New York Times questioning why people were not more enraged after the 2006 rural Pennsylvania hate crime against a schoolhouse full of women and girls, nor after the 2009 Collier Township shooting. Herbert remarked, “We have become so accustomed to living in a society saturated with misogyny that the barbaric treatment of women and girls has come to be more or less expected.”

 After a Not In Our Town screening at American University, graduate student and former high school and journalism teacher Mandy Toomey raised the question: why don’t we hear more about hate crimes against women?

 On the American Association of University Women blog, Toomey reflected, “One thing I noticed that was missing from these examples [the screening] and other videos on the site were hate crimes committed against women. According to [Not In Our Town Executive Producer] Patrice, crimes against gender are classified by law as hate crimes by some states; in general, however, communities don’t generally rise up against such crimes. This made me stop and wonder: Did anyone rise up in outrage when George Sodini opened fire on a woman’s aerobics class in Bridgeville, Pennsylvania?” 

Toomey raises an important question: are we paying enough attention to hate crimes against women?

 Read Toomey's full Hate Crimes Against Women post at the American Association of University Women website. 





















Kirthi, thanks for writing this!  I think this is a huge issue that is mostly overlooked.  The Ecole Polytechnique Massacre in Montreal in 1989 is an older example of this: 25-year-old Marc Lepine shot nine female students, killing six, saying, "You're women, you're going to be engineers. You're all a bunch of feminists. I hate feminists," before opening fire.

 It is somewhat embarassing to try to understand the lack of attention to these crimes.

There is also the long running debate about whether rape of women should be classified as hate crimes.We have certainly come to know them as war crimes and there is no question that it is meant to instill fear in a group of people based on who they are.

I  think we often focus on the violence against women and lack of womens rights in other countries without recognizing how much hatred still exists here in the US against the idea of  womens equal role in society. 

I also think we are slow to categorize certain violence against women as a hate crime because it s very scary to admit that one belongs to a group that is a target of such violence and hatred



We should raise awareness about how women's rights are being violated here. We should not have a lack of attention to this issues. We should understand the fact that no matter what our gender is but rather respect everyone's human right's. We have to stop being spectators!!

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