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LaBarbera calls (possible) vandalism a “hate crime”

Timothy Kincaid

October 21st, 2011

Peter LaBarbera (who calls himself “Americans for Truth About Homosexuality”) is delighted about the instance of (possible) vandalism experienced by Christian Liberty Academy. He hasn’t had this much attention in years.

Again today the American Family Association’s newsletter gave him an opportunity to get his picture in front of potential donors. And, Pete never loses an opportunity to play a victim of the insidious homosexual agenda (send money). He has been a victim of a hate crime, you see.

Americans for Truth About Homosexuality (AFTAH) founder Peter LaBarbera tells OneNewsNow police are investigating the incident on the basis of vandalism, even though he sees it as a hate crime. Though he is no fan of hate crime laws, LaBarbera wonders if some victims of hate are more important than others.

“It seems that if this were a crime against homosexuals, there would be immediate calls, that this would be prosecuted as a hate crime,” he suggests. “But when Christians are the victims of hate, there’s not much talk about that.”

A hate crime is one that identifies its victims not based on anything that they have personally done, but rather solely because of their identity within a group. It is a crime against a group, intended to intimidate that group, and only incidentally about the individual.

This appears to be the opposite. This is a crime (if it is indeed a crime) directed specifically towards individuals, Scott Lively and Peter LaBarbera. One could even say that the manifesto is devoted to Lively with a few mentions of LaBarbera and is extremely personal in its focus.

So unless Scott Lively is his own social demographic, no hate crime was committed.



Stephen Archer
October 21st, 2011 | LINK

There must have been a reason for the brick to be thrown, wouldn’t there have been?
What else would it be other than hatred toward someone like Scott Lively proclaiming The Truth about homosexuality?
If was an LGBTQX meeting, and they discovered that there was a brick thrown through the window, I am sure that they would label it as such!
Like I believe very much:
” Whoever cries ‘TOLERANCE’ the loudest is the most intolerant of all ”
and that I mean, LGBTQX want everyone to accept a lifestyle, while those who disagree are haters. I don’t understand this. I am an ex-homosexual, and I never campaigned for any rights because I already had them. To claim that homosexuals have the right to impose is absurd. You impose that marriage is a right. No it is not. It is a privilege between one man and one woman. Homosexuals can have their way in setting up house together and play acting husband and husband or whatever their whim is, but it will NEVER be marriage. No same-sex couple has EVER had a natural offspring of their own, so how could it even be called marriage?
I mean, what is sperm for anyway? What is an egg for in the natural way to understand biology? How did YOU come into being?
My last word for you:
“Truth is hate for those who hate the truth.” ~ a quote from a little old lady who was sadly charged for holding to…

Priya Lynn
October 21st, 2011 | LINK

Stephen said “You impose that marriage is a right. No it is not. It is a privilege between one man and one woman”.

Wrong. The U.S. Supreme court determined in Loving vs Virginia “Marriage is one of the “basic civil rights of man,” fundamental to our very existence and survival”.

Labarbera and Lively weren’t attacked because they belonged to a particular group, an indentifiable group was not attacked so this is not a hate crime.

Priya Lynn
October 21st, 2011 | LINK

And Stephen, those who claim to be “ex-homosexual” are the most same sex attracted of all.

Timothy Kincaid
October 21st, 2011 | LINK

Stephen Archer,

I remember when I used to think that i could find out what a phrase meant by looking up the separate words in the dictionary and assuming that the phrase was the result of the two definitions. Oh, and I recall making a fool of myself arguing over “regressive tax”.

You are making the same sort of fool of yourself here, Stephen. You think a “hate crime” is a crime in which someone is exhibiting hate.

You are wrong, poor fellow.

But you should understand this idea. After all, you call yourself “ex-homosexual” which – as you surely know – is a statement about identity and political and religious affiliation and says nothing whatsoever about your sexual attractions. But others might think “ex-homosexual” meant that you are no longer homosexual in your attractions.

Actually, you are just “ex-feeling ok with being how God made you” and “ex-pleasant person” and “ex-civil”, but I wish you well, all the same.

Regan DuCasse
October 21st, 2011 | LINK

Um Stephen…

LaBarbera and Lively have made it clear that there is no such thing according to them, AS a hate crime. They have stated, in no uncertain terms that such a definition is wrongful, and no group or law deserves any designation and that ALL crimes can be defined as having a root in hatred for their intended victim.

In other words, Lively and LaB are themselves using terms for a crime that they don’t believe exists. ESPECIALLY against gay people.
Their terminology and definition of this crime, is hypocritical on their part.

They don’t even have any evidence that someone gay or attached to a collective of gay people had anything to do with it.
Considering the way Lively has distorted Holocaust history, I can see someone Jewish being greatly offended at him.
Ever think of that?

LaB and Lively engage in hateful rhetoric, distortions of history and facts regarding certain other people. They are offensive men.
They’ve actively worked towards making enemies. Perhaps even people who supported them, and have found out that the money they donated to AFTAH’s cause, in fact went into LaB’s own wallet to support his habit of doing nothing much more than libeling gay people.
It’s not like LaB is curing cancer or working towards a cause like eliminating or reducing domestic violence.
So, perhaps his enemies list includes people from his own camp.
But then, EVIDENCE is needed for that too.

It would be just as wrong to assume that as it is that anyone gay is responsible without EVIDENCE of either.

Let’s just say, considering that LaB isn’t that important a person in the scheme of things, and he’d HAVE no life without gay people, I might even guess he did it himself to be relevant to anyone.

October 21st, 2011 | LINK

Hate to burst your bubble, but if the crime directed against them related to their membership and leadership of said group – then yes, it’s potentially still a so-called hate crime. Hate crimes have morphed into attacks on individuals based on their membership of a group, but when it comes to religion, that includes what people believe. And this is why hate crimes laws are stupid. Vandalism is vandalism. Filing a false police report is, of course, also a crime.

Priya Lynn
October 22nd, 2011 | LINK

Andrew, the crime, if it was done by a gay person was done because of the anti-gay actions of Lively, not because he was a member of any religious or gender, or sexual orientation group so, no, it wasn’t a hate crime.

Patrick Hogan
October 22nd, 2011 | LINK

@Stephen Archer: SCOTUS has ruled 14 separate times that marriage is a fundamental right, essential to the free exercise of liberty and necessary for the continuation of society. The right to marriage was not invented by gay people, much less by gay activists; we’re simply trying to participate.

Oh — and sperm is for swallowing. If you’re in a committed, monogamous relationship; otherwise, sperm is for keeping the tissue industry afloat outside of cold season.

@Andrew: If the message on the brick did come from a gay person or a supportive straight person, it was likely still not a hate crime. It seems to have been directed particularly at Lively — not at Christians in general (or even Christians who disapprove of being gay) — so it can’t be a hate crime. Hate crimes are crimes that target a community; the motivation behind a hate crime is not to harm the individual (that is but the means to an end). Rather, hate crimes seek to intimidate a community — not an individual.

paul canning
October 22nd, 2011 | LINK

There is a statement *somewhere (sorry) from Illinois police saying it definitely is not a ‘hate crime’, it’s not covered by local law.

October 22nd, 2011 | LINK

I have to disagree with this post. Yes, the crime was directed at a specific person, but it was directed at that person because of their political positions. Obviously the person who committed it is trying to intimidate anyone who is on the same side as Lively and LaBarbera. Frankly, I think that its dangerous to argue that this isn’t a hate crime, as it would mean that there’s a pretty big gray area between “crime” and “hate crime,” whereas I always thought it was pretty black and white.

Priya Lynn
October 22nd, 2011 | LINK

John said “Yes, the crime was directed at a specific person, but it was directed at that person because of their political positions. Obviously the person who committed it is trying to intimidate anyone who is on the same side as Lively and LaBarbera.”.

There is no evidence of that John and in order to be a hate crime there has to be evidence that the crime was intended to intimidate a group, not just an individual. In a hate crime on gays there will be evidence, such as the attackers screaming “Die fag!” or “tell all your friends about what happens to gays!”. There is no such evidence in this case so it is not a hate crime.

Regan DuCasse
October 22nd, 2011 | LINK

Hi John…
Well, back to MY point then. Lively and LaB are in no position to CALL it a hate crime, if they have stated specifically and expressly that hate crimes are non existent.
Were they consistent in their own beliefs, then this is just a crime, not a ‘hate’ crime.
Their COMPLAINT is hypocritical.
The police can and will still investigate it because people like LaB and Lively have NEVER been members of a group where a crime against them was never taken seriously.

That’s the difference, the MAJOR difference between defining a crime, and a hate crime.
The groups more traditionally the target of a hate crime, weren’t just hated by the PERPETRATORS, but by the system of justice too.
Make no mistake in focusing on the attack, but also the chain of investigation and penalty are important too in the interests of justice.

Groups on the receiving end of hate, have been hard pressed to engage the justice system to take their grievances and pain seriously. If police, or juries, judges and so on didn’t ALSO engage in denying justice for the victims.
Sometimes police have also been brutal to members of the gay community.

So the DEPTH of hatred towards a particular class has meaning here too.
And LaB and Lively cannot make the claim that hetero, Christian white males haven’t been receiving justice and fairness in cases like this.
Indeed, they’ve enjoyed abusing others with impunity for the most part.

Now LaB and Lively are claiming they are victims of a hate crime. Maybe.
But they don’t know who the perps are, but are already making assumptions and claims against the very group THEY have committed more grievous libel and slander against.

In comparison, their claims ARE hypocritical.

Terry T
October 23rd, 2011 | LINK

Ah, Stephen archer, propagandist spinmaster. The Supreme Court Disagrees with you, marriage is a right. Just FYI, there are no ex-gays, there are only delusional individuals attempting to hide their true ingrained orientation.

Timothy Kincaid
October 24th, 2011 | LINK


Here’s a tick-list to help you understand:

1. Is the victim part of an identifiable group? (And you may have a hard time identifying one here. For example, “Christian” isn’t going to work. I’m Christian and should it prove to be vandalism, I’m pretty sure I’m not in the vandal’s sights.)

2. Is the group defined by actions or identity? (Be careful with this one. Some claim that anti-gay hatred is based in “behavior” but in reality they hate anyone they think is gay without any distinction – or even any way to know – as to who is engaging in what behavior.)

3. Is the victim known to the perpetrator? Do they have interaction that might provide other motivation?

4. Is there indication on animosity based on the group rather than on the individual? Is this purely a “stand in” for the group or could it be based on the person? (This should be tied to number 1 above)

5. Is the severity of the crime one that is in proportion to other motivation? (e.g. Some people claim that Matthew Shepard was just a robbery victim. But the severity of the crime was horrific – far far beyond what the local police had ever seen – that it manifest a motivation that “robbery” simply couldn’t explain.)

6. Was it evident that the crime was intended to be a message or threat to the group? (e.g. a burning cross on a black family’s lawn; a swastika on a Jewish family’s house; “die fags” on a gay family’s wall)

This can be a fuzzy area. And that’s one reason I’m not generally fond of hate crimes enhancements. But it is seldom that a hate crime is prosecuted as such and even less often that a conviction is found on that enhancement. Policy, prosecutors, and juries are hesitant to apply this injudiciously.

But I think if you go through the above questions – honestly, that is – you’ll see that this situation simply doesn’t fit.

Harry T.
October 25th, 2011 | LINK

Is the group defined by actions or identity? (Be careful with this one. Some claim that anti-gay hatred is based in “behavior” but in reality they hate anyone they think is gay without any distinction – or even any way to know – as to who is engaging in what behavior.


Dude, you just stepped in it. Homosexuality is a behavior. Your inclination toward homosexuality doesn’t erase this fact. You just demonstrated the exact reason why your whole argument is absurd on its face.

Oh yeah, and if you’re a Christian why dohn’t you follow the golden rule and treat others as they would like to be treated? Do you love your enemy? Like Peter LaBarbera, for example?

Harry T.
October 25th, 2011 | LINK

Andrew is quite correct:

“And this is why hate crimes laws are stupid. Vandalism is vandalism.”

Yup. Hate crimes laws are incredinbly stupid. Matthew Shepard is exhibit A. He was BRUTALLY murdered. Some people think it was because of his sexual preferences, although the evidence for that is very thin. It’s more likely that he was killed by a strung out meth bisexual head who wanted his money to buy more meth. But seriously, does it matter? Would it be any less heinous if it was done for money?

It’s rare to see someone like Andrew on this site make sense. It’s usually self-centered emotionalism.

And now, without the slightest iota of evidence, I see people accusing LaBarbera of doing it himself.

Harry T.
October 25th, 2011 | LINK

This will never be a “hate crime” in Priya Lynn’s mind because the victim and the perpetrator aren’t correct. She simply can’t allow it.

The standard for what is, and what is not a hate crime changes depending on who the supposed victim is. It’s amorphous like jelly.

So Priya Lynn will try to provide reasons why she the hate crime in not really a hate crime, but these reasons were summarily pulled out of her ass. They aren’t reasons, they’re rationalizations.

Priya Lynn
October 25th, 2011 | LINK

Harry said “Dude, you just stepped in it. Homosexuality is a behavior. Your inclination toward homosexuality doesn’t erase this fact.”.

That’s pretty dumb, Harry. Gayness is a same sex attraction. People are gay regardless of their behavior, be they virgins, sexually active, or celibate. Some people are gay even though they are in a heterosexual sexual relationship.

Harry, you wouldn’t know a valid reason if it bit you in the rear. There is no evidence that this incident was intended to terrorize a group of people rather than an attack on an individual so it is not a hate crime – case closed.

Priya Lynn
October 25th, 2011 | LINK

I forgot to add, there are also heterosexuals who have same sex sex. Sexual behavior doesn’t determine if a person is gay or not, attractions do.

Richard Rush
October 25th, 2011 | LINK

Let’s say that Bull, Bucky, and Bubba have been verbally and physically attacking Victor over a period of months because he is gay. And then one day Victor punches Bubba in the face, breaking his jaw.

Has Victor just committed a hate crime against a whole class of people, known as bullies? Does Victor have an irrational hatred of bullies simply for who they are? Is Victor a hypocrite for expecting tolerance of his gayness while he’s intolerant of the bullies’ sincerely held beliefs? I assume Harry T. would answer “yes” to all those questions.

Timothy Kincaid
October 25th, 2011 | LINK

Harry T,

Dude, you just stepped in it. Homosexuality is a behavior.

What behavior is it? Precisely, Harry, without being graphic or overly profane, just tell me exactly what behavior defines homosexuality?

Oh yeah, and if you’re a Christian why dohn’t you follow the golden rule and treat others as they would like to be treated? Do you love your enemy? Like Peter LaBarbera, for example?

I didn’t say that I was a particularly successful Christian, but yes I do try to treat people the way I want to be treated. Usually. When I remember to.

Interestingly, there are quite a few commenters who can back up my claim that I do try to keep this website civil to people who disagree. Sometimes to the annoyance and frustration of gay folk who really want to let them know what they think.

But I try – as much as I can – to treat anti-gay activists with courtesy and decency while also disputing their views.

This is one of the odd and mostly unknown peculiarities of gay blogging. Anti-gay and pro-gay activists not infrequently will email each other; partly to make sure a quote is correct or a view is accurately expressed, but also to just talk about an issue.

They are people and we are people and sometimes even a tentative and qualified friendship develops. And sometimes we honestly care about each other – though we are each determined to have our views prevail.

My relationship with Peter is cordial but we are not regularly in communication.

And as for love… that’s tough. I’m not going to lie and give the conservative Christian definition of love (the one that could double as hate). And I certainly am not sufficiently full of grace so as to exhibit all of Corinthians 13’s definition of love towards Peter.

But on a human level to the best of my abilities I love him. I mostly see him as a victim of the world he created for himself. He’s trapped in a viewpoint that simply doesn’t stand up to reality and increasing (very rapidly) those whom he has always considered to be safe allies are growing away. His is a changing world and his influence is shrinking.

Frankly, in about five years, Peter’s going to be really hurting. His entire life has been devoted to a cause that is losing and which, if he allows himself to be honest, he probably really doesn’t believe anymore. Ironically, Peter has so involved himself in monitoring gays that he knows too much to continue forever in his beliefs.

So I guess I pity Peter. I don’t wish him ill. I have compassion.

But… I’m still working on love.

October 27th, 2011 | LINK

simple, really.

Hate Crime:
“Die, Fag, Die”

What did this say? “Stop Lively” or some such?

To be equivalent to “Die, Fag, Die” it would have to say “Stop Breeder’ or “Stop Christians”

This identifies him as a person.

There is a huge difference between “Jews must die” and “Bernstein must die”. A huge difference between “Go Away Darky” and “Go Away Robinson”

It wasn’t directed at Lively as part of a class of people. It was directed at Lively specifically, and because of what he has specifically done. Not for a group he belongs to, but for what he, as a person, as an individual, has done.

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