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Defining Characteristics and Politicising Victims: A Legal Perspective

Author:

Jennifer Schweppe

University of Limerick, IE
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Abstract

Legislatures worldwide experience the same problem in drafting or amending hate crimes statutes: How is it possible to discriminate between victim groups, and which groups are worthy of legislative protection? This article explores some of the experiences of legislatures, highlighting the political inconsistencies which go on to shape the legal system. It focusses on the experience of a number of common law jurisdictions, and seeks to establish a normative platform from which hate crimes statutes can be based, drawing on the legislative experiences of the United States. This platform draws on two other areas of law, particularly the criminal defence of provocation and equality legislation, and shows that the determination of victim groups for hate crimes legislation need not be the politically charged, discriminatory, and exclusionary process that it is today.
How to Cite: Schweppe, J., 2012. Defining Characteristics and Politicising Victims: A Legal Perspective. Journal of Hate Studies, 10(1), p.173. DOI: http://doi.org/10.33972/jhs.118
Published on 01 Jan 2012.

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