Saturday, May 28, 2005

Barney Frank: New Hate Crimes Law Needed for "Gender Identity"

Back in 2000, Massachusetts Congressperson Barney Frank first pushed to include "gender identity" in proposed legislation. He added the words "gender identity, characteristics, or expression" to a domestic-violence grants bill (which thankfully went nowhere).

Now Barney is at it again on a more serious level, with support of others in Congress. Reps. John Conyers, Christopher Shays, and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen have joined him as sponsors of the "Hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2005" (announced May 26, 2005). According to Barney's press release, "The legislation will give federal protection to victims of hate crimes perpetrated on the basis of race, religion, sexual orientation, gender, disability or gender identity."

The latter phrase, according to the National Gay & Lesbian Task Force, includes "gender-related characteristics", "making it clear that transgender people are covered under the bill.... Previous versions of the bill covered actual or perceived gender, sexual orientation and disability."

Now, the problem with "gender identity" is that it is defined solely by the person claiming it -- this, according to "trans" activists themselves. They explain that one's gender identity can change over time -- over a day, over a year, over a decade. It's fluid. They even say that the concept of how many genders there are presents difficulties: Are there only two genders? Well, not really. Gender is a social concept, and there can be three, four, five genders. Just depends on how you look at it, and who you are.

Is this difficult concept -- "gender identity" -- defined in the legislation? Is the older term "sexual orientation" ever defined? How can we have legislation covering such bizarre concepts which (even among the homosexual and "trans" activists) constantly change their meaning? Recently, we learned that even the word "transgender" is outdated ("a political term from the 90's"), now out of favor due to its possible implication that there are only two genders!

If passed, Barney's legislation could have an especially pernicious effect in Massachusetts, given the lawless state of affairs here. Frank's press release states:

"Under federal hate crimes legislation, the primary responsibility in prosecuting these crimes lies with the state. The legislation operates to give assistance to the states. Extending the federal law would allow state and local authorities to take advantage of federal investigative resources and personnel in bringing cases based on state law."

We are wading into dangerous waters. Even before things got this wacky, Pat Buchanan and others warned us about legislation targeting "hate crimes" based on the victim's "sexual orientation". Just imagine how weird things will get if "gender identity" is covered. Buchanan wrote back in 1998:

"[T]eenagers who drive through a gay area yelling taunts would be guilty of a verbal hate crime. But a homosexual who murdered an 8-year-old boy he raped would not.

"A conservative congressman who yelled an epithet for gay as he punched Barney Frank in the nose could be charged with a hate crime. But if Barney Frank called a conservative congressman a 'fascist' and punched him in the nose, he could not.

"Painting a swastika on a wall is a hate crime, but the Terrence McNally play running in New York, in which actors portray Jesus and his apostles in simulated homosexual sex, is avant-garde artistry. ...

"To prove America's wickedness, leftists carefully tweezer out of all U.S. crime statistics the tiny number of outrages that make their point. Then, their publicity organs go into overdrive to exploit the few outrages to propagandize for new laws."