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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 149794 Find in a Library
Title: Special Report Regarding the Constitutionality of Massachusetts Civil and Criminal Civil Rights Laws
Corporate Author: Massachusetts Dept of the Attorney General
United States of America
Date Published: 1993
Page Count: 22
Sponsoring Agency: Massachusetts Dept of the Attorney General
Boston, MA 02108
National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
NCJRS Photocopy Services
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
Sale Source: Massachusetts Dept of the Attorney General
1 Ashburton Place
Boston, MA 02108
United States of America

National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America

NCJRS Photocopy Services
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
United States of America
Document: PDF
Type: Survey
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Civil rights and constitutional law experts conducted a comprehensive legal review of the Massachusetts civil rights laws and concluded that these laws are constitutionally sound and on firm legal foundation.
Abstract: The Massachusetts laws are fundamentally different from the St. Paul, Minn. hate crime ordinance that was at issue in the United States Supreme Court decision of R.A.V. v. City of St. Paul. The Court held that this ordinance violated the First Amendment because it prohibited the expression of certain ideas on the basis of their content and not on the basis of the method in which these ideas were conveyed. In contrast, Massachusetts civil rights statutes target only conduct, not ideas. They proscribe conduct already criminal in nature and do not apply to speech or conduct that would otherwise be lawful. The findings of this analysis should send a clear message both to victims and to potential perpetrators that bias-motivated crimes will be vigorously prosecuted in Massachusetts. Footnotes and list of members of study group
Main Term(s): Criminology
Index Term(s): Civil rights; Hate Crimes; Massachusetts; State laws
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=149794

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