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 Bnai Brith 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,
DIANN Y. RUST-TIERNEY,
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