We Can Hate The Criminals But Can’t Criminalise Hate.

“Darkness cannot drive darkness; Light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; Love can do that.”
– Martin Luther King (1963)


Can hate, which is manifested through incitement be classified as a sin as well as a crime?

Someone quips,

Hate is a crime & a sin.

Societies should frown heavily on hate and incitement -particularly from influencers and opinion leaders like politicians, clerics, teachers whose words have a great impact in shaping societal thinking.

I agree totally that people who are influencers should be mindful of what they say in public as a lot of people take a cue and shape their actions and even lives after those speeches.

But, hate being a crime? Isn’t hate an emotion?

Does my hating you necessarily mean I will take a knife and stab you in the guts?

There is the need to need to draw a line between my personal / private thoughts and what is termed hate, and the subsequent criminalisation.

Wikipedia mentions something about
hate crime:

“Hate crime” generally refers to criminal acts which are seen to have been motivated by bias against any of sex, ethnicity, disability, language, nationality, physical appearance, religion, gender identity or sexual orientation.

Hate crime may include physical assault, damage to property, bullying, harassment , verbal abuse or
insults, mate crime or offensive
graffiti or letters.

But Wikipedia was referring to the criminality of actions that are the result of the emotion of hate, not that hate itself is a crime.

We can all agree that hate is a sin because it can lead to undesirable actions in society, but hate as a crime? Hate could just be resident in the mind off the hate purveyor,and never expressed or spoken.

Besides, a provision of the constitution must have been breached before something is termed a crime.


Hate is an emotion, like greed, love, anger, etc, and so can NOT be a crime.

It may however lead to sin. and should be avoided

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