My father-in-law is pretty racist, and I don't care. Its the man's choice. Would I rather he not be? Sure. But its not my life, its his. If he wants to hate people, he can.
and if he started to act up by doing stuff like creating oraginzations that publically stated that black/mexican/whatever people should be wiped off the face of earth, I hope you would want the law to step in and stop him.
After all, Such actions often promots for pyshical actions against other people to take place, and that's when it can get dangerous.
if he's just some cranky old man just sitting on his porch muttering under his breath, not really doing much then yeah he doesn't really propse a threat at all.
It's all about the Actions. So if PAST ACTIONS, such as running an “hate black” website, promted the said person to feel justifed enough to go kill somebody… then the past actions add on to that crime.
So you see? it's not about hating the person.
Heck, there's been plenty of white/black/whatever people who was simply jailed for killing people even though there was people saying it was a hate crime and therefore should had been jailed for much longer.
But on the other hand there's been people who were jailed for hate crimes BECAUSE there was EVIDENCE THAT PAST ILLEGAL MINOR ACTIONS LED UP TO THE MORE SERIOUS CRIME, MAKING IT A MORE SEVERE CRIME.
Let me take pedophiles as an example. Normally, peophiles who were just caught on one single offense such as raping some young girl are given the typical 10 years' time or something.
But if there was EVDIENCE that he had PAST offenses (gathering nude pictures of little girls off the net, chatting up little children, etc) that led up to his “need” of raping a little girl…then that's clear evience that he has an obbession with children, and much more likely to reoffend again….making him all that more dangerous. So of course he's given twice the sentence!
It's just the same with racists– it's nothing big if it was a small offense like throwing a rock though somebody's window…they get charged with property damages and is told to compesate for the damages.
But if they had PAST offenses that showed evidence that thier prejudices is more dangerous and obbessive…then the crime becomes much, much more serious.