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Partner Organizations

Anti-Defamation League


Center for the Prevention of Hate Violence


The Leadership Conference Education Fund

Funded By

Office of Juvenile Deliquency Prevention U.S. Department of Justice


Safe and Drug Free Schools Program U.S. Department of Education

Funded by the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, and the U.S. Department of Education, Safe and Drug-Free Schools Program.

Issue/Question:
Can a hate crime be committed with words alone?

Suggested Response:

The use of bigoted and prejudiced language does not in and of itself violate hate crime laws. This type of offense is frequently classified as a bias incident. However, when words threaten violence, or when bias-motivated graffiti damages or destroys property, hate crime laws may apply.
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