Hate Crimes Legislation is Not the Answer

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

On Tuesday Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson released a statement renewing calls for Arkansas to pass hate crimes legislation.

In response, Family Council President Jerry Cox released a statement, saying, “Hate crimes laws don’t work. New Jersey has a hate crimes law like the one the governor is proposing, but it didn’t stop anti-Semitic violence from happening in that state last week. The FBI tracks hate crimes committed nationwide. According to the FBI, the five states with the highest number of hate crimes in 2018 were Washington, New Jersey, New York, Texas, and Michigan. Every one of these states has a hate crimes law. Arkansas, on the other hand, has some of the fewest hate crimes of any state in America. Passing a hate crimes law isn’t going to do anything here.”

Cox said besides being ineffective, hate crimes laws give government the power to punish speech and beliefs. “Hate crimes laws give the government the power to punish thoughts as well as actions. When police investigate a possible hate crime, questions come up about what the suspect wrote or said. People ask questions about his religious beliefs or his friends and associates. These investigations stray into thought-policing and end up punishing criminals for what they believe in addition to what they did. Free countries don’t criminalize beliefs or thoughts.”

Cox said hate crimes laws promote unequal justice. “Hate crimes laws treat crimes and their victims unequally. Targeting anyone and committing a crime is wrong and currently illegal. When hate crimes laws levy harsher penalties for targeting some people but not others, the punishments can differ even if the crimes are the same. The penalty for murder or armed robbery should be the same no matter the victim’s race, religion, or sexual-orientation.”

Cox said Family Council will oppose any effort to pass hate crimes legislation in Arkansas. “We have opposed hate crimes laws every time they have been proposed at the Arkansas Legislature since the 1990s. This legislation was a bad idea 25 years ago, and it’s still a bad idea today.”


Family Council Pleased With Nomination of Arkansas Attorney Lee Rudofsky to Federal Bench

Monday, July 1, 2019

On Monday, President Donald J. Trump nominated Lee Rudofsky to serve as a federal judge for the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas.

Family Council President Jerry Cox released a statement saying, “We are very pleased with President Trump’s decision to nominate Lee Rudofsky. Mr. Rudofsky is highly qualified to serve as a federal judge. He is a graduate of Cornell University and Harvard Law School, and he has experience with constitutional law. As Solicitor General for the State of Arkansas, Mr. Rudofsky tirelessly defended state laws and policies in court—including policies that protect taxpayers from subsidizing abortionists like Planned Parenthood through Medicaid funding. While there were many other qualified candidates for the position, I am confident Mr. Rudofsky will do an excellent job serving on the federal bench, and I urge the United States Senate to confirm him.”

Family Council is a conservative education and research organization based in Little Rock.


Come to This Candidate Forum on August 13

The following is a press release from a partnership of statewide faith leaders and community leaders.


LITTLE ROCK, ARKANSAS— All three candidates for Arkansas Governor have confirmed that they will attend a gubernatorial community forum in North Little Rock on Monday, August 13 at 6:30 p.m.

The forum, which will focus on issues important to families and the future of Arkansas children, is sponsored by a combination of statewide faith leaders in partnership with the Arkansas Out of School Network and other community groups.

“As faith leaders we feel it is important for us to come together and be advocates for our children and those who can not speak loudly for themselves due to lack of resources or lack of access”, explained New St. Hurricane Baptist Church Pastor Derick Easter of Pine Bluff.

The 90-minute forum, which will allow community members to become more informed about the candidates and their platforms, will be held at New Hope Baptist Church, 1821 Edmonds Street, beginning promptly at 6:30 p.m.  Doors for the event open at 6 p.m.  Incumbent and republican candidate Asa Hutchinson, democrat candidate Jared Henderson and libertarian candidate Mark West will discuss pre-established questions from topics such as afterschool and summer programming, health care and economic development.

“Afterschool and summer learning programs are a vital resource for families across Arkansas”, said AOSN Network Coordinator Laveta Wills-Hale. “They keep kids safe and healthy while preparing them for the future.”

Some supporting partners for the event include the Arkansas Out of School Network, Regular Arkansas Baptist State Convention, Consolidated Missionary Baptist State Convention of Arkansas, Arkansas Family Council, Faith Voices of Arkansas, Arkansas First Jurisdiction Church of God In Christ and Full Gospel Baptist Church Fellowship.

Early voting begins October 22 for the gubernatorial election, which will be held on November 6.

For further information about this free community event contact: Derick Easter 870-536-8337 or 501-590-4589 or dkeaster@sbcglobal.net