After LGBTQ-Friendly Church Vandalism, North Carolina Considers Hate Crime Law Additions

Currently there are 5 of our United States that do not have hate crime laws (Arkansas, Wyoming, Michigan, South Carolina, Georgia). Fourteen other states have hate crime laws that do not include sexual orientation and gender identity in their definition/protection (see map at end of post).  North Carolina is one of the 14 that have a hate crime law with very little scope.  Will this change soon?


A bill filed by North Carolina lawmakers on Wednesday would protect LGBTQ and LGBTQ-allied citizens from hate crimes. It would also increase penalization for certain offenses from misdemeanors into felonies, according to WCNC.

The anti-hate crime legislation comes shortly after Caldwell Presbyterian Church, an LGBTQ-inclusive church in Charlotte, was broken into and vandalized. Graffiti was written within the building, with one vandal using a verse from Leviticus to attack the house of worship’s LGBTQ stances.

“[It] has to do with the sin of a man lying with a man,” Sally Herlong, operations and business manager for the church, told WCNC. –


North Carolina's current hate crime laws focus on specific types of hate crimes.  By state definition actions like cross-burning or intimidation via specific items, such as a lynch noose, are considered hate crimes. Of course any hate crime needs to be proven.

Will North Carolina broaden its hate crime definition to include crimes against its LGBTQ+ citizens because they are LGBTQ+?  We hope so. It's just sad that a crime has to lead to a possible betterment of laws.



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