Last edited: December 19, 2004

American Civil Liberties Union Opposing Amendment No. 1251

HATE CRIME STATISTICS ACT (Senate — February 8, 1990)

Congressional Record [S1069]

American Civil Liberties Union, Washington, DC, July 14, 1989.

Dear Senator: We write to ask you to support the Hate Crimes Statistics Act (S. 419) when it is considered by the Senate. S. 419 would require the Justice Department to collect statistics on crimes motivated by hatred based on race, religion, sexual orientation or ethnicity of the victim.

Reports by the Anti-Defamation League of the B’nai B’rith and the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force reveal an alarming increase in hate motivated crimes. To date, there is no comprehensive federal mechanism for determining the scope of hate motivated crimes. This legislation has the support of the President as well as a broad collection of religious, civil rights, civil liberties and law enforcement organizations as well as support from the Department of Justice.

We understand that Senator Helms will offer an amendment directed at the fact that the bill authorizes the collection of crimes committed against gays and lesbians. We believe the Helms amendment is unnecessary and controversial.

Senator Simon and Senator Hatch will be offering an amendment to S. 419 which provides that Congress does not promote or encourage a particular type of sexual conduct. The Simon/Hatch amendment makes it clear that S. 419 does no more than authorize the collection of statistics.

We urge you to support the Hate Crimes Statistics Act, to reject the amendment offered by Senator Helms and to support the amendment offered by Senator Simon and Senator Hatch.

Very truly yours,


Legislative Counsel.

[Home] [Helms Amendment 1251] [USA]