fake hate crimes: a database of hate crime hoaxes in the usa

The purpose of this site is to compile a comprehensive database of the false reports of "hate crimes" committed (mostly) in the USA. It builds on the work of Laird Wilcox, whose Crying Wolf (PDF) is the original book on this subject. The books Hate Crime Hoax and Hate Crimes: Criminal Law & Identity Politics are also recommended.

Print or online article, tv or radio program

reports which reference this tv program
104. Was Matthew Shepard murdered for being gay?. It is almost universally believed his murder was the re... 1998-10-07 Laramie WY

'20/20' investigation challenges Shepard murder's hate-crime label

San Francisco Chronicle

Virginia Heffernan


It is almost universally believed that the murder of Matthew Shepard in Wyoming in 1998 was the result of anti-gay hatred. Just one TV program, one article in the NY Times, and the same one in the SF Chronicle, challenges that assumption. The murderers were out of their heads on meth, and there is no evidence that the murder was caused by anti-gay bias. Elizabeth Vargas, of the program '20/20', made an 'intellectually brave' stand: "'20/20' takes the position that the description of this murder as an anti- gay hate crime is entirely wrong. After six years of sentimental theater, documentaries and television movies that have bolstered the hate-crime view, Friday night's program is no less than iconoclastic."

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