Hate crimes increase second year in a row in US, FBI report says

Hate crimes in the U.S. saw a 4.6 percent increase in 2016, jumping to 6,121 reported incidents from 5,800 the previous year, an FBI report said.

The report, which gathered information submitted by law enforcement agencies across the country, revealed that nearly all hate crimes were based on a single bias, with 57.5 percent motivated by race or ethnicity bias, 21 percent motivated by a religious bias and 17.7 percent motivated by a sexual orientation bias.

The hate crimes based on race and ethnicity made up 3,489 of the crimes, up from 3,310 a year earlier, the FBI report said. Half of them were motivated by racism against black people, the report said.

The report showed a rise in crimes motivated by hatred of a religion, and a majority were against Jews and Muslims. Anti-Semitism was the cause motivating about 55 percent of the crimes, followed by anti-Muslim sentiment, which motivated about 25 percent.

The number of hate crimes targeting lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people also went up last year.

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy group, said in a statement that the new FBI hate crime report shows the need for all Americans to stand up to increasing bigotry nationwide.

“We have all witnessed the anger and prejudice that characterized last year’s election season, and that is growing nationwide in the current political environment,” said Corey Saylor, director of CAIR’s National Department to Monitor and Combat Islamophobia.

“To reverse this disturbing trend toward increased hatred and societal division, we must stand up to bigotry and the targeting of minority groups,” he added.

The Southern Poverty Law Center said earlier this year that it found “a dramatic jump in hate violence and incidents of harassment and intimidation around the country” in the wake of President Donald Trump’s Nov. 8, 2016 electoral win. Agencies