A little over a week ago the Washington Post published a lengthy story with the title, “The Confession.” It told the rest of the story to anti-homosexual slurs that were sprayed on the walls of a church in Indiana. These were posted shortly after Donald Trump’s election and got national attention. Late-night host Stephen Colbert showed an image of one of the church walls in his opening monologue.
As you might imagine from the title, a police investigation led to a confession that this was yet another hate crime hoax. Let me give credit to the writer and the Washington Post for covering the story even though some believe it was a partial attempt to rehabilitate the image of the hoaxer. The article also mentions the well-known story about Jessie Smollett. In fact, you could even argue that the incident at this Indiana church provided the template for other hate crimes hoaxes that have been in the news the last few years.
The investigator for the sheriff’s department felt something didn’t make a great deal of sense. The walls were defaced with black spray paint showing a swastika along with the words “Heil Trump” and “Fag Church.” The actions and phraseology didn’t fit. You can read the article to see why he began to suspect the homosexual church organist.
The story goes on to argue that real hate crimes outnumber fake ones. Not everyone agrees. Fox News host Tucker Carlson has argued that, “In real life, hate crimes are rare. Hate hoaxes, by contrast, are common.” Whatever the actual percentage, we should be concerned that we do see a number of hate crime hoaxes that waste the time, energy, and money of law enforcement.