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Hate Crimes Over the past couple of years, hate crimes have been on the rise in America's largest cities. Studies show that there were sharp spikes in the overall percentage of hate crimes around the most recent election (Levin, Nolan, & Reitzel, 2018).

According to the National Institute of Justice, the term "hate crime" originated in the 1980s by journalists and policy advocates who were attempting to describe a series of incidents directed at Jews, Asians and African-Americans. The FBI defines hate crime which would also be known as a bias crime, as "a criminal offense committed against a person, property, or society that is motivated, in whole or in part, by the offender's bias against a race, religion, disability, sexual orientation, or ethnicity/national origin".

According to the FBI the six most frequently targeted groups in 2016 were African-Americans, lesbians, gays and bisexuals, whites, Jews, Latinos, and Muslims. Race continued to be the most common category, comprising 57 percent of all hate crimes (Levin et al. 2018). White supremacist groups use the internet in the same ways mainstream advertisers use the internet to promote their business.

The difference is white supremacist groups are spreading heinous messages in order to recruit new members who will also spread the message of hate, with them making a concerted effort at trying to attract young people by creating sophisticated computer games aimed at attracting teenagers (Fritsch, Liederbach, Saylor, Tafoya, & Taylor, 2018).

Some other ways the hate groups spread their messages online includes social networking, video platforms, & online funding. Social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook struggle with trying to find the balance between the right to share and debate ideas with the responsibility to protect society against potential attacks, so because of this and the fact that these social networking sites have their own internal guidelines about what constitutes a hate group, people are able to get away with creating groups that some view as hate groups (CNN, 2018). Because proving that a criminal has committed a hate crime is almost impossible, law enforcement investigators and government legislators find prosecuting a person for a hate crime tremendously hard.

Also, the First Amendment protects a persons freedom of speech which then protects their actions from being classified as a hate crime. Additionally, the use of computers to join online communities allows a person the feeling of anonymity which then allows the person to participate in things he or she never would in the real world (Fritsch et al. 2018).

It goes without saying that the Bible teaches us that any form of hate is wrong. 1 John 2:9-11 states "Anyone who claims to be in the light but hates a brother or sister is still in the darkness.

Anyone who loves their brother and sister lives in the light, and there is nothing in them to make them stumble. But anyone who hates a brother or sister is in the darkness and walks around in the darkness.

They do not know where they are going, because the darkness has blinded them" (New International Version).

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