In simple definition, hate crime is the intentional violence to hurt or intimidate someone because of their disability, ethnicity, national origin, race, religious, or sexual orientation. The level of brutality is often excessive, frequently committed by a stranger that targeted the victim because of his or her difference, and often the offenders are in a group rather than being an isolated offender. According to the Southern Poverty Law Center (2011), these known hate groups include “neo-Nazis, Klansmen, white nationalists, neo-Confederates, racist skinheads, black separatists, border vigilantes, and others.”
In fact, Jewish people are affected more by hate crimes than any other religion. According to the William Breman Jewish Heritage Museum, “Antisemitism is the prejudice towards, or discrimination against Jews… can manifest itself in a number of forms, including discrimination against individuals, the dissemination of hate literature about Jewish people, arson directed against Jewish cultural or religious institutions, or organized violence against Jewish communities (pogroms)” (2011).
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Grosser, P.E. & Halperin, E.G. (1978). Anti-Semitism: Causes and Effects. New York: Philosophical Library, 1978.
Southern Poverty Law Center. (2011). Hate and extremism. Retrieved November 7, 2011, from
William Breman Jewish Heritage Museum. (2011). Antisemitism - a brief history. Retrieved
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Zebel, S., Doosje, B., & Spears, R. (2004). It depends on your point of view: Implications of perspective-taking and national identification for dutch collective guilt. In N. R. Branscombe & B. Doosje (Eds.), Collective guilt: international perspectives (p. 149). Cambridge, United Kingdom: Cambridge University Press.
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