Hate crimes in major U.S. cities rose moderately during the first half of 2022 after posting double-digit percentage increases over the past two years, according to police data compiled by the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism.

Iran PressAmerica: The data collected from 15 major city police departments show an average increase of about 5 percent in bias-motivated incidents so far this year, according to a new report by the extremism research center at California State University at San Bernardino.

The 15 cities have a combined population of 25.5 million people. By comparison, a larger sample of data from 52 major cities compiled by the center showed hate crimes in the United States surged by nearly 30 percent in 2021, according to the report.

If the increases seen so far this year hold, it would mark the fourth consecutive year in which hate crimes have risen in the United States.“There is a bit of a deceleration going on, but events don’t get confined to one year, they can be multi-year trends,” said Brian Levin, executive director of the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism.

Arusha Gordon of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law cautioned that hate crime data tend to undercount the true number of incidents.“It always makes me very nervous discussing the data around hate crimes just because we know that the data really is so lacking,” Gordon, who heads the committee’s James Byrd Jr. Center to Stop Hate, said in an interview.

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Bias-motivated attacks on Asian Americans, which surged to record levels last year, dropped in several major cities, with the number of incidents in New York City decreasing by 48% and in Los Angeles falling by 17%. Levin noted that anti-Asian hate crimes remain at high levels.

He pointed up, though, that anti-Muslim hate crimes dropped in 2002 after hitting record levels in the wake of the attacks of September 11, 2001. What is more, hate crimes tend to rise during the year's second half.

With the U.S. midterm elections approaching, experts warn there could be a fresh surge in bias incidents later in the year.“Oftentimes we see hate crimes increase as political rhetoric becomes more fierce,” Gordon said.


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