Amish Beard and Hair Cutting . . . and Reason for Judgement: The Leader of This is Found Guilty of Hate Crimes (Upate)
On September 20, 2012 a Cleveland jury found Samuel Mullet Sr. guilty of federal hate crimes., of beard- and hair-cutting attacks against members of his own faith in Ohio.
His criminal defense attorney had argued Mr. Mullet’s religious convictions were at stake. But prosecutors responded: This cutting was a deliberate act, to shame victims with a deliberate act that (to the Amish) literally “cuts” them from God. Maybe this alleged beard- and hair-cutting is a narrow reflection . . . of an interpretation of faith.
To note, this may be a 10-year prison sentence or longer. Charges include conspiracy, evidence tampering, and obstruction of justice.
But a larger questions is this: What is the fine line between religious conviction (or over-pumped zeal) and the community at large?
Too much is in the news – the tragedy in Libya of slain ambassador Chris Stevens, the riots in Egypt, for tw examples – that brings up the age-old point: What is the line between religion and civil government? Faith is the bulwark and guideline for many, yes. But has religious zeal gone too far? The irony may be this: Religion – while professing one ideal – could be, now, practicing the opposite. Paging Clarence Darrow . . . and Whoa! this is a thin-ice problem.
(Whatever the vision, maybe there’s a problem.)
And whatever the judgement, criminal attorneys should be advised: This decision affects everyone. Tolerance is the key word. No line has been drawn in the court rooms of the United States.
Meanwhile, Mr. Mullet – and several others – will be experiencing the federal consequences of misguided religious zeal and judgement. And as said, 10 years – or longer – is a long time to think and to pray for guidance. Sentencing to follow shortly.