Editorial: the Hate Crime Label

April 17, 2003

Source: Salon.com


On April 17, 2003 Salon.com printed an editorial by Eric Boehlert stating that "last summer... a Muslim immigrant by the name of Hesham Mohamed Hadayet... approached the ticket counter of the Israeli-run El Al airline at Los Angeles International Airport... and opened fire... Six weeks later... a Jewish podiatrist by the name of Dr. Robert Goldstein... was arrested after police raided his home. There they discovered a detailed plan to blow up 50 local mosques and Islamic centers... Police also uncovered a vast illegal stash of weapons... Ultimately, law enforcement authorities would label one man a terrorist, and the other a dangerous but deluded perpetrator of hate crimes. How do two crimes with similarities that seem highly relevant in the midst of a war on terrorism come to be defined so differently?"