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2017 Letters to the editor stock

If 45 states passed unconstitutional and unnecessary hate crimes legislation, should Indiana follow suit? No! And here’s why!

The Hate Crimes Bill (S.B. 12) singles out 14 separate identity groups for special protection. This clearly violates Indiana’s Constitution which says, “The General Assembly shall not grant to any citizen, or class of citizens, privileges or immunities, which, upon the same terms, shall not equally belong to all citizens.” (Art.1, Sec.23).

The 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution also grants equal rights, not special protection.

It is unnecessary because, out of 384,382 crimes committed in Indiana in 2016, only 76 alleged bias incidents were reported which represents a minuscule 0.0002 percent of all crimes!

For these reasons, Gov. Holcomb and our state senators and representatives must honor their oaths of office and vote “NO” on this unconstitutional and unnecessary bill.

Cheree Calabro, Valparaiso

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Editor

Marc Chase is a veteran investigative reporter, columnist and editor of more than two decades. He currently leads The Times news staff as local news editor. He can be reached at 219-933-3327.