The question is not whether hate was involved in the crime of murder or willful infliction of bodily injury not involving self-defense or defense of others. Always, it is, with the possible exception of genuine euthanasia, when the question becomes instead whether the act of homicide was murder. "Malice aforethought", as distinguished from premeditation, is always a requirement for murder, whether implied, as under the felony-murder rule, or expressed. Malice aforethought is the equivalent of hate, though in the context at issue, it is hate directed to a protected group, as defined by the statute. The question is whether adding "hate" to the definition of murder, when it involves certain protected groups, adds anything substantive to the dialogue regarding crime and punishment. Or does it fuel reactionary hatred the more? Are the murder laws in the states, in this time and age, sufficient? Life sentences or death for murder may only be imposed once. Does adding "hate" to the elements of the crime, whether at the state or Federal level, do anything constructive for prevention of future such acts? Plainly, it adds nothing to punishment, except in the case of sentence enhancements, not at issue in a murder case.
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