Is There Justice in America?

By Kenneth D. Christensen

Almost every time I listen to the news, I get riled up. I wonder how we let things that are not right become the law of the land. Case in point, so called "Hate" crimes. Contemplate this situation: A man attacks another man and beats him up. The attacker is arrested and charged with assault and battery. He is given a trial in court. He is found guilty and sentenced to two years in jail. So far so good. Let's now have the same thing happen, but this time the attacker strikes against a person of a different race. The newspapers hardly mention the first incident, but now in banner headlines they proclaim "Man found Guilty of Hate Crime". The attacker again is tried and convicted. He is sentenced to two years in prison. Whoa! That is not what happened. He is given four years for the same crime. Different punishment for the same crime is not right. That is wrong!

The laws concerning assault and battery specify sentence that must be served if convicted. How can any man determine what the motive of another person is? Only God knows the motives of men. 1 Samuel 16:7 "...for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart." The consequences of breaking God's laws do not take motive into account. Actually, God is the only One who could justly punish because of motive, because He knows, but He has chosen not to. He sets the example for us. If the law says that punishment for the crime is two years in prison, WE HAVE NO RIGHT to sentence four years because the accused had a bad attitude when he committed the crime.

The application of the "hate" motive is also very unjust. Have you ever heard of anyone being charged with a "hate" crime for doing something against someone of his own ethnicity and race? A crime committed against someone who "looks" like you could just as well be a "hate" crime as if it were committed against someone of a different race.

I am not suggesting that we should reduce the sentence for any given crime. Double the current sentence on all crimes if you want, but everyone convicted of the same crime should be subject to the same sentence. The Bible very plainly states that we should be just. Micah 6:8 "He hath showed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?" (Emphasis added)

Very closely related to this concept, is the idea that people should not be held accountable for what they do, if they were "out of sorts" when the crime was committed. Murderers plead "temporary insanity", and escape the consequences of their actions. God's law says; Genesis 9:6 "Whoso sheddeth man's blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in the image of God made he man." It doesn't give an out for having a bad day! Ezekiel 18:20 "The soul that sinneth, it shall die." God doesn't add, unless he is "mentally challenged".

Every crime should have a clearly defined punishment. The punishment should be suited to the crime and not concerned at all with motive.

Just before I step down from my soap box, I will touch on one more thing. I am no friend of tobacco. I believe it is a disgusting and dirty habit. I do not permit smoking in my home. I have never smoked and by God's grace, I never will. I have absolutely no sympathy for the tobacco industry, per se. But there is a huge miscarriage of justice going on in this country. Tobacco companies are told where they can and cannot advertise their product. States are winning lawsuits against tobacco companies because the product may cause cancer and thereby increase health care costs. The government is attempting to put obscene taxes on this product. The hypocrisy of it! Tobacco has been subsidized by the government for many years. The taxes are supposed to provide money for covering all the "children" in a national health care plan. At the same time, they are encouraging everyone to stop smoking. Then where would the money for the "children" come from?

I could go on and on about this, but the injustice is this: IT IS A LEGAL PRODUCT! It is politically correct to be against smoking. They should be consistent, if they are legitimately concerned about our welfare, why not attack the booze industry. Booze kills more people, destroys more families and produces more widows and orphans than tobacco. Why no massive campaign to get people to stop drinking? Even the Bible clearly teaches that drinking booze is wrong. Habakkuk 2:15 "Woe unto him that giveth his neighbour drink, that puttest thy bottle to him, and makest him drunken also, that thou mayest look on their nakedness!" Proverbs 23:31 "Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it moveth itself aright." Proverbs 20:1 "Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise." Smoking, on the other hand, is not specifically mentioned in scripture. We can infer from God's word that it is wrong from such passages as 1 Corinthians 6:19 "What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?"

I am not for tobacco or alcohol. If the government really thinks smoking is so bad, they should make it illegal. I would be for that, but it is not right to pick out a legal product and use the full force of government to attack it.


For more about "Hate" crimes, Click Here

Ken's Soap Box
Home Page