racism... quick questions

im curious what everyone thinks

scenerio A) white guy (A) kills a black guy

scenerio B) white guy (B) kills another white guy (C)

question 1) does white guy A deserve a more sever penalty than white guy B?

question 2) if scenerio A is a hate crime does white guy A deserve a more severe penalty than white guy B?

question 3) if scenerio A is a hate crime and scenerio B is commited over something petty who deserves a more severe penalty

comments are welcome.

No. Circumstances being equal, race is a non-factor.

Based on given information, yes.

Hate crimes are ‘petty’, that’s the whole idea; so I can’t exactly answer. A hate crime, as I understand it, is distinct from other sorts of crimes because they’re based on a fallacious logic that assumes validation of said act by way of racial or sexual superiority/discrimination. A ‘petty’ crime would be of the same sort and thus would demand a similar punishment.

murder is murder.

There are degrees of murder, there is a big difference between killing someone for financial gain and killing someone for cheating on you in the spur of the moment.

Not to mention, the word ‘murder’ does not appear in the OP.

…with liberty and justice for all.

so petty that they deserve a more severe sentence?

how about this one…

scenerio A) white guy A kills white guy B to defend himself
scenerio B) white guy A kills white guy B for food for his dying children
scenerio C) white guy A kills white guy B

does A and B deserve

A) a shorter jail sentence
B) the same jail sentence as C

after you answer that questions ask yourself these… why does a generic murder have a different impact on your opinion than a murder with reason regardless of how ridiculous it is? if you know more information on someones motives and history why does it change the end result? why would you want a soft deterministic justice system that is based on human biases regardless of whether they are currently popular to practice or not?

black fist perched on a cross

they should all recieve the equal punishment…

I have four reasons,

  1. Because there is no alternative, unless you believe in an unchanging universal system of justice. If you do good luck getting anyone but yourself to agree on all the specifications.

  2. Human biases are the foundation of our conceptions of justice.

  3. Any system of law will be biased towards the cultural norms of the time.

  4. A system of law that doesn’t take into account human needs and biases isn’t a system of law for humans.

slavery was a cultural norm that was taken into account for our concept of justice.

a little interjection: the idea of “hate crimes” is horrible. we should correct people’s behaviour, not their emotions.

I agree with you 100%, cba1067950, a culture that has adopted slavery as a norm will adjusted its conception of justice to include laws which permit slavery. So what’s your point?
That doesn’t function as an argument against my point it only reinforces it. If you disagree with slavery, I sympathize, that is because we live in a culture which does not permit slavery.

Let me ask you this… If you believe in a Universal System of Justice (USJ) how do you account for the following two points.

  1. If a culture established their norms on a USJ then it would stand to reason that those cultures norms would remain universally. So, I ask you, why hasn’t such a cultured existed? If it did exist at some point how could it have decayed with time?

  2. Cultural norms like slavery change over time along with cultural ideas of justice. If one were to universalize justice how would such a system account for the changing desires of a culture?

  1. it took humans like 6000 years to even define justice. i dont view our society as an ever changing chaos that we are doomed to misinterpret until our destruction. i think we are making progress. i think we can make people happy. sorry i said it. people are probably happier now than they were when they were being prosecuted and burned/tortured for trying to speak freely.

  2. if it was universal it wouldnt have to change unless humans changed. there are a few very basic needs that everyone needs to survive. there are a few more that people need to be happy. its not that much more… its just humans are so stupid that they have a hard time giving it to everyone.

either way my point is this

crimes always have a reason.

people kill for every reason.
why is racism the only one that deserves its own extra penalty
what about murder of children? thats extremely disturbing also but theres no set of special crimes for it.

under that philosophy if someone kills a nazi he should get an extra penalty also. if any murder happens because of some sort of major ideological difference there should then be a special penalty for that disagreement correct? if a man kills a women, if a child kills an adult, if a polish guy kills a german. i mean we all have to have some sort of hate for the people were killing

If justice is only in the transient mindset of society, how does a society’s concept of justice ever change?

Moreso, how is it defined in the first place?

  1. Racist crimes have to be seen to be being punished severely, hence racist murderers will get much longer than someone who kills via dangerous driving

  2. White people are about a million times more likely to be convicted of a racist crime than any other group

Although after the Brum riots (Birmingham for you Yanks) it is clear there are rising tensions between the Asian and Black communities in England.

One of my friends at Uni, from Malaysia, told me that the Malysian president used to go on TV and call Blacks a sub-species and idiots all the time. I think there is a racial hatred there that just hasn’t had an opportunity to spark yet as there’s less contact between those racial groups at the moment than white/black or white/asian.

How a societies concept of justice changes over time I couldn’t say, but it is clear that concepts of justice change over time.

yea because … those commandments are soooo outdated. thou shall not kill? ill kill whoever i damn well please.


I thought you were done with the conversation so I never replied; clearly I got the wrong impression. This is good because I feel we still have some room for debate. Before we continue I would like to make it clear that I don’t think human history is “…an ever changing chaos that we are doomed to misinterpret until our destruction.” I never said anything negative about human nature at all, what I did say, is that justice is clearly not based on universals. I believe that it is quite possible to construct a morality and system of justice while recognizing its non-universal nature.

If justice has been solidly defined then I am ignorant. Would you please let us know what the definition happens to be? There is about a whole world of people interested in hearing that answer.

I’ll agree with you, a little, America and the rest of the first world are probably happier now with their limited rights. On the other side of the coin however our dependence on sweat-shop labor, exploitation/consumption of world resources, and our supporting of authoritarian regimes to ensure hegemony sure isn’t making the rest of the third world any happier.

But as far as your ideas on progress; I don’t see much difference between America and Rome or Sparta. Technology has improved, sure, but as far as our concepts of justice, nope not any better maybe a little different.

I agree with that. If justice were a universal then our concepts of justice would remain the same, be the same, and function the same way, across all countries, cultures, and individuals. However this isn’t the case in the current human world we live in. Human ideas of justice change all the time both culturally and historically.

I guess I don’t get your point. Are you saying justice is universal or that it isn’t?

I would argue that the commandment you mention is indeed a fundamental part of almost all cultures. I may be ignorant but I have never heard of a culture that had no rules or taboos regarding murder. To some extent every culture has a rule against murder, but they are generalized and not very specific. In our culture for example it is okay to kill for your country but not for your race or gang colors. Other reasons for murder like a husband killing his cheating wife or a mother who kills the man who raped her daughter are examples that we sympathize with and in so doing can allow for lighter sentences in our justice system. So even thou shall not kill can have an infinite number of exceptions, exclusions, and adaptations.

Thanks this is fun. : ) Can’t wait for your response.