Rhode Island is now the 13th state to include gender-identity and expression in its hate crime laws. The Transgender Hate Crimes Monitoring Bill (S2488) was introduced to the Rhode Island General Assembly on February 16. It passed the Rhode Island House on May 24, and Governor Lincoln D Chafee signed the bill on May 30. The Transgender Hate Crimes Monitoring Bill assists in the research and safety of Rhode Island’s transgender population. In addition, because the bill addresses all hate crimes committed from gender identity or expression bias, victims of all gender identities are protected under this statute. Specifically, the bill adds gender identity and expression to Rhode Island’s hate crimes reporting statute, which already specified race, religion, gender, disability and sexual orientation as motivating prejudices. This now requires Rhode Island State Police to not only report hate crimes based on gender identity and expression, but to also undergo mandatory training regarding the handling of gender identity and expression related hate crimes.
Mural defaced by hate graffitti near OSU campus. Photo Source: The Lantern Students at Ohio State University use new media technology to take a stand against a series of hate crimes that took place on their campus over the past few weeks. On April 5, students were horrified to learn that the words “Long Live Zimmerman” were spray-painted on the wall of the Black Cultural Center. Shortly after this incident, three swastikas along with the word “N----rs” were spray painted over a mural of President Obama.
Prompted by changing demographics and a recent hate crime, the Chattanooga, Tenn. Office of Multicultural Affairs is sponsoring a forum this Thursday on hate crimes. The forum will include presentations from the FBI, the U.S. Attorney’s Office, and the Department of Justice Community Relations Service.
"Who is this group that's coming? And I realized ... it's Fred Phelps and my heart just dropped. I can't believe they're coming. Why us? Out of all the schools, why us?" —Daisy Renazco, Gunn High School teacher02/2011—Above is one of NIOT.org's most popular videos, "Gunn High School Sings Away Hate Group," which has garnered more than 225,000 views on our YouTube channel. Ellen DeGeneres, in a Tweet, said she was "so unbelievably proud of Gunn High School in Palo Alto, CA for demonstrating love & acceptance in a peaceful way."What's significant about this video is that it showcases how a community can stand up to hate in a peaceful and constructive way. The video was shot in 2010, when the Kansas hate group known as the Westboro Baptist Church (Fred Phelps' family) announced they would picket Bay Area schools and Jewish institutions. The students of Gunn High School, located in Palo Alto, Calif., decided they could not sit quietly.
Dec. 15, 2009-Jan.10, 2010 Sacramento, CA: Churches and synagogues offer support to an Orthodox synagogue hit with anti-Semitic graffiti on New Year's Eve, the second Jewish center vandalized in a month. Both synagogues were hit by arson a decade ago, as chronicled in a Not In Our Town video. Buffalo, NY: A lesbian left blind in one eye following a hate attack outside a gay nightclub, is comforted by the many messages of support left on her Facebook page.