A horrific crime against a gay couple, severely scalded with boiling water while they slept. But even though Georgia is one of five states that do not have hate crime statutes, as the Washington Post reports, the perpetrator received a 40-year-prison sentence.
Not sure what a hate crime statute would have added, but support for state hate crime laws is high on the LGBT political priority list. Others point out that it’s better to punish actions, especially heinous actions as in this case, and not prioritize some forms of hate (i.e., group-directed animus) above others in terms of the severity of the punishment imposed.
As I’ve previously noted, hate crime supporters often oppose the death penalty, so in some cases involving first-degree murder in which a life sentence has been handed out, they simultaneously support/oppose the next logical step-up in punishment.