ORLANDO, Fla. — Four men in Orlando were charged with a hate crime after they pummeled a 62-year-old woman and her two mentally-challenged companions at a public park after they didn’t pay a “fee” for being white, police said.Investigators said the victims were walking into a Kaley Park when they were confronted by Christopher Colbert, Erick Golden, Willie Pritts and Antoniette Boone.
Police said the victims were told that since they are white, they had to pay a fee to be in the park.
When the three didn’t pay, the men beat them, officers said.
One of the victims was held up with a knife, a police report said.
Deputies stopped the men a few miles from the park and they were taken into custody.
Thugs, protection rackets, and criminal behavior like this has been around forever. The only difference is that in 21st Century America, it has become fashionable to assign special penalties if the crime involves skin pigmentation.
It is absurd.
The perpetrators committed an act which deserves the full weight of the Florida criminal legal system being brought to bear. But to single out a special category of “hate crime” requires a burden of proof on the prosecution that can be manipulated by defense attorneys, and demagogued by politicians. It is not only potentially a divisive issue, but counter-productive as well.
If justice is indeed blind, then to treat criminals and their victims any differently because of their skin color, sexual preference, religion, or sex is just plain wrong.