It’s a new semester, and invitations to speak at various University of Nebraska classes have begun. Last year, I blogged about a visit to ALEC 466: Agricultural Leadership and Communication, Leadership and Diversity. The instructor, PhD student Helen Fagan, gave me a couple of broad topics, racial profiling and hate crimes.
I’m hardly and expert, but it seemed to be a good discussion, like last year. Perhaps my years of experience in policing provide a certain viewpoint that contributes to the students’ learning process. I took along a few Incident Reports that are typical examples of hate crimes in Lincoln.
The reports (13 in all) are a depressing testament to, hate, racism, and just plain ugliness: an assault outside a McDonalds on a man who couldn’t restrain himself when he felt the customers ahead of him were moving too slow, and who couldn’t refrain from making his report to the police laced with disgusting, racist language; a gay couple’s window smashed out with a brick; a Latino couple accosted by an Asian man with an incredible barrage of hateful, racist language; a racially-charged fight at a high school: a car load of bigots looking for a victim to torment outside a gay bar. Remarkable, however, was the racial and ethnic diversity of both perpetrators and victims, proving that no one has a monopoly on hate.
As I reminded the students, this snapshot of a few police reports is just the tip of a much larger iceberg.