Texas Hate Crime Bill Targets Children as Young as Ten

Pete Chagnon - OneNewsNow - 5/28/2009 5:00:00 AMhttp://www.onenewsnow.com/Politics/Default.aspx?id=544704

Jonathan Saenz of the Texas-based Free Market Foundation says lawmakers in The Lone Star State are targeting young children with a "hate crimes" bill.

HB 824 has moved out of committee and is expected to be voted on shortly. The bill targets children as young as ten years of age who are allegedly guilty of hate crimes. Saenz explains how the law might be applied.

"If they committed some crime and it had to do with the issue of 'sexual preference' -- particularly the issue of homosexuality -- they could be punished," he says, "and a judge could order them to go to a program where they have to accept the other side and accept the views of homosexuality."

According to Saenz, even more punishment could be doled out. "[T]he judge could [also] order them to do community service where they have to do a project in the homosexual community that serves the homosexual community's interest," he offers.

Saenz says the law would apply to children who have committed an act of arson or graffiti, or have assaulted another person based on sexuality. But he fears the law could potentially be misapplied and misused.