Although civil rights advocates have largely supported hate crimes laws over the last four decades, growing concern over mass incarceration is now leading some to question the focus on enhancing prison sentences. This Essay explores two alternatives to the traditional sentence enhancement model that might retain the expressive message of hate crimes laws—to convey society’s particular condemnation of crimes of bias—while relying less heavily on police and prisons: the reformation of victim compensation programs to help victims and targeted communities and the application of restorative justice processes to hate crimes. Each of these alternatives presents complications, but both offer sufficient potential to justify further exploration.
Response to Aziz Z. Huq, Democratic Erosion and the Courts: Comparative Perspectives, 93 N.Y.U. L. Rev. Online 21 (2018)
Oversight institutions within the executive branch can play an important role in checking executive power. But the independence and efficacy of these institutions depend on unwritten conventions that are now under threat.