Hate speech against Latinos and others is on the rise.
At the same time, we are seeing an increase in anti-Latino hate crimes.
Studies show that in addition to the physical harms, hate speech causes psychological damage
to recipients; damage felt most severely by children.
- In California, anti-Latino hate crimes increased 47% from 2009 to 2010.
- Washington, D.C. reports a rapidly rising percentage of hate crimes against Latinos.
- Nationally, there was a 40% rise between 2003 and 2007 according to FBI statistics
- These numbers underestimate the problem as 54% of hate crimes between 2003 and 2009 were not reported to the police, according to Department of Justice statistics; many Latinos do not report hate crimes for fear of retaliation and/or deportation
- In 99% of violent hate crimes between 2003 and 2009, victims reported that the offender(s) used “hate language” during the crime, according to DOJ statistics
- 87% of hate crimes between 2003 and 2009 involved violence, according to DOJ statistics, with murders and assaults occurring across the US
NHMC has invoked a three-pronged strategy to address the harm:
- This environment of perpetual dehumanization has instigated people to act inhumanely.
- Research shows that children and teens are susceptible to messages in the media because they are still developing cognitively. Indeed, teens are to blame for many violent hate crimes.
1. NHMC has asked the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to issue a notice of inquiry and open a docket to inspect the extent and effects of hate speech in media, and non-regulatory ways to counteract its negative impacts.
- Three of the four current FCC Commissioners (including the sole Republican) have agreed that opening an inquiry is a fine idea. The only one holding up the inquiry is the FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski, who has refused to meet with NHMC one-on-one on this matter.
2. NHMC has asked the National Telecommunications and Information Administration to update a 1993 report titled The Role of Telecommunications in Hate Crimes.
- Assistant Secretary Strickling agreed to update the study if he receives the funds. He has recently backed away from that statement.
3. NHMC has partnered with the UCLA Chicano Studies Research Center to conduct three pilot studies on hate speech in media. Two of the studies will be released in late 2011, and will present a scientifically sound methodology by which hate speech in media can be quantified.]]>