The United States has more ‘protected’ classes than any other country. For those who live in whatever passes for the equivalent of outer Mongolia in the United States, without access to information of any sort, a ‘protected’ class is a group of people with similar characteristics that have legal rights superior to those not in a protected class, and upon whom actions deemed to be offensive to the ‘class’ are criminalized in a special way with greater penalty than when such acts are inflicted on ‘non class’ victims.
Historically protected classes, meaning classes that have been protected for long periods of time, include: blacks (i.e. usually ‘African Americans as opposed to ‘Americans’, but which may include all ‘people of color’ in addition to those descendent from Africans), the disabled and women. To the historically protected classes we now include by virtue of judicial and/or political decisions: those of the Muslim religion (i.e. not Christians), anyone the ACLU represents, ‘native Americans’ (i.e. Indians other than those from India, but see ‘people of color’ above), criminals injured by their victims in the course of committing crimes, those not owning or possessing guns, illegal aliens in general (including illegal aliens confronted by U.S. border agents acting in self defense against illegal aliens but excluding those hiring illegal aliens), enemy combatants apprehended in the course of attacking American soldiers and those imprisoned (as well as enemy combatants actually still in combat), those earning what Democrats consider ‘below the poverty level’ (or on welfare), and on-and on (you can add any I didn’t list).
Liberals are now lining up to create another protected class – homosexuals. A recent headline announced “Historic breakthroughs seen for gay-rights [read, homosexual] bills in Congress”. It seems ‘a reshaped’ Congress [read, Democrat congress] is likely to pass the “first major federal gay-rights [read, oh never mind] bills. Anticipating support by Republicans-in-name-only, it is believed a so-called ‘hate-crimes’ bill covering what liberals consider offenses motivated by anti-homosexual bias (‘anti-gay bias’), and a bill outlawing workplace discrimination ‘based on sexual orientation’. For good measure, and to be all inclusive for those to be covered by the extended 'protected class', congress can be expected to also include 'transsexuals'.
Regarding hate crimes legislation, two things are noteworthy. First, if a heterosexual is clobbered, the ‘clobberer’ (sic) is not penalized as much as if he perpetrated the same crime on a homosexual. The bill is not clear what penalty applies for crimes against a bi-sexual, or merely a cross-dresser, but it can be assumed it would apply to a ‘trans-sexual’ (see a dictionary for definition).
Secondly, motivation for the crime is a ‘sticky wicket’ because it requires going into the head of the perp. An entire industry, psychoanalysis, exists to penetrate reasons for human behavior, generally with little uniform success. Yet, we are expected to believe that prosecutors, jurists and juries will be able to peer into the minds of criminals having the misfortune of selecting a homosexual as a crime victim. Or perhaps, we will select only those with proper medical education and training to assume the roll of police, prosecutor, judge or jury members for ‘hate crimes’. Since these things are not possible, the law will likely assume that a criminal act against a homosexual will have been ‘motivated’ by anti-homosexual bias, and no further proof will be required.
Although both bills are a danger to freedom of speech (since verbal assaults deemed to reflect homosexual bias will also be criminal or at least actionable) and to religious liberties. In an act of hypocrisy, the bill will likely exempt churches and small businesses from the workplace bill in order to get votes for passage. Ironically, the workplace bill will be entitled “The Employment Non-Discrimination Act” or ‘ENDA’ for short. It will certainly be the ENDA of common sense.
With his history of a peculiar sense of righteousness (look at Bush’s views about border control and citizenship for illegal aliens here) and lack of understanding consequences (remember the McCain-Feingold law); we cannot assume President Bush would veto such legislation so get used to another protected class being added to the federal list.