The New York Times had an interesting and deep-delving piece about the state of the Bergholz, Ohio Amish splinter group now that their leader, Sam Mullet is behind bars. The central issue, to me, has always been: were the crimes "hate" crimes or not? A jury in Ohio decided that the beard-cuttings that gained such media attention were, in fact, hate crimes. Sentencing is February 8. Is this a dangerous cult that needs to have the book thrown at them? Or is this just a wayward group executing an internal religious feud? I think one can make compelling arguments on both sides. Read the New York Times piece here. Most Amish I have met view Sam Mullet's group with disdain, pity, or as the punchline to a joke. He's definitely far out of the mainstream, perhaps so far that he should no longer really be considered Amish. Not sure. What do you think? Photo credit:Michael Melroy, New York Times...children play outside the schoolhouse in Bergholz
About Kevin Williams
Hi, my name is Kevin Williams and I am owner of Oasis Newsfeatures and editor of The Amish Cook newspaper column.