Boulder, CO approves $16,000 for a hate hotline that will allow residents (finally!) to log incidents of bias and "vent their frustrations." That sounds like a number you call to shout hate speech, not report it, but either way it's OK because everybody's hoping for the best: The City Council desires that the hotline will not be used in building criminal complaints, and Mayor Mark Ruzzin wishes that the hotline would become self-sustaining after six months. Rocky Mountain News reports that "several" residents believe the hotline will be valuable "in giving a voice to minorities who feel they don't have a voice now, and in showing that Boulder isn't the bias-free city that some people think it is."
Denver Post columnist David Harsanyi asks some questions:
There is, for instance, the policy statement condemning the usual individual or collective acts of racism and bigotry. Great. But it also condemns those who attack "personal beliefs and values."
"Well, for the ACLU, that goes over the line," Golden says. "You can object to free speech just because someone is a Republican or a Democrat."
What would happen to the bumper-sticker industry? …
Should everyone keep the hate-line number on their cellphone speed dial from now on? And remember, only call if your attacker uses racist or insensitive language while beating you to a pulp. After all, according to hate-law advocates, it's not genuine hate unless the perpetrator makes fun of your heritage.
Thanks to Dan Playstead for the tip.