Hate speech and social media
Hate crimes are a national issue for every country. There are different versions of hate crimes with each of them occurring for varied reasons.
Some hate crimes happen because of personal prejudice and racism, while there are others stemming from government involvement spanning the local, state and national levels. Some hate crimes occur simply because of differences of opinion. Certain people react violently to other cultures and beliefs that go against their thinking or lifestyle.
The Act Against Hate Alliance conducted a webinar recently about the importance of “Organizational Collaboration in Combating Hate Crimes.”
"Hate speech is an important aspect that we need to focus on because that is what fuels hate crimes." said Tamás Berecz, general manager of the International Network Against Cyber Hate Group. They utilize their research and analysis to better target hate speech on the internet. "The impact racist or prejudiced speech can have on communities that are vulnerable, especially when stated online, can cause an influx of attacks and crimes against these groups because of the influence from a few people who can provoke others to act on their thoughts."
Maria Daniella Marouda, chairperson of the Bureau of the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance, stated that while finding the solution to stop hate speech is important, it is hard to solve because you can't control the thoughts or words of others only the response you give to them.
“We have struggled to recommend promising practices to other countries on how to combat hate speech, but we conduct frequent field tests in minority areas and standard areas to help us better address hate speech with principles and guidelines," Marouda said. “We have to set the standard at the government level and then implement those same principles to the public."
Dennis Santiago, chief operating officer of the National Diversity Coalition, is advocating for a complete fundamental shift in terms of public policy to bring a reduction in crimes of hate.
"We need a cultural shift in how we approach this problem,” Santiago said. “We need solutions that do not perpetuate the mistakes that may have been made in the past.”
This article is a part of a series of articles for Our Weekly's #StopTheHate campaign and is supported in whole or part by funding provided by the State of California, administered by the California State Library. #NoPlaceForHateCA,