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Some people say this town don't look good in snow

Posted on 2004.27.09 at 13:52
How I feel about it all: blahblah
Soundtrack: America - Ventura Highway
Gacked from gay_marriage:

John Edwards on hate crime legislation


What Matthew Shepard Taught Us
by Sen. John Edwards
Special to 365Gay.com

Editor's Note: The Local Law Enforcement Enhancement Act is expected to come to a vote in House in the next week. The bill would add sexuality to the list of categories covered under hate-crimes. So far Republicans have stalled the measure.

It was almost six years ago that we learned the name Matthew Shepherd. We might someday have learned about how this bright, kind and compassionate man contributed to our country. But we learned Matthew Shepard’s name because of the terrible way he was killed on October 12, 1998.

We still remember the fence where Matthew died. His brutal murder opened our country’s eyes to the hatred and violence that many gays and lesbians endure. Yet here we are, almost six years later, with a president who refuses to support legislation barring hate crimes based on sexual orientation.

According to the FBI, crimes committed in 2002 due to bias based on sexual orientation represent 1 in 6 of reported hate crime incidents. There were more than 1200 incidents and 1500 victims in 2002 alone.

John Kerry and I want an America that is stronger at home and more respected in the world. We know we cannot achieve that goal until we recognize that all Americans, including gays and lesbians, are part of the fabric of America’s family. And when it comes to family, we must protect each other. We must recognize that crimes against people because of their race, religion, or sexual orientation have no place in America.

That is why John Kerry and I firmly support the bipartisan legislation that will add new protections against hate crimes motivated by the real or perceived sexual orientation of the victim. George Bush has said that this kind of legislation amounts to “special rights.” But there’s nothing special about the right to be free from hateful violence. In America, people ought to be able to take that right for granted.

As Judy Shepard, Matthew' s mother, has said, "Matt is no longer with us today because the men who killed him learned to hate. Somehow and somewhere they received the message that the lives of gay people are not as worthy of respect, dignity and honor as the lives of other people." Keep her words in your thoughts, and on November 2nd, I urge you to vote for John Kerry—-in memory of Matthew Shepard and the thousands of other Americans whose lives have been cut short for no other reason than being themselves.

John Edwards is the Democratic Vice Presidential Candidate.

©365Gay.com® 2004


junesrose at 2004-09-27 17:29 (UTC) ()
Hmmm, wonder how Dick Cheney feels about this, considering his (?sister? ?daughter? *mybad*, I forget which one!) is lesbian. I wonder if hate crimes were to be committed against her, what his reaction might be.

Something to ponder...
try to catch the deluge in a paper cup
primroseburrows at 2004-09-28 06:10 (UTC) ()
It's his daughter, and he's come out, as it were, supporting her and saying he doesn't support the FMA, which is something his boss enthusiastically does. I don't know how he feels about hate crime legislation. Dubya's agin' it, from what I see, and no surprise there.
peacey at 2004-09-28 06:01 (UTC) ()
My feeling is that ALL murderous, violent crimes are hate crimes. I see absolutely no difference between the hate that leads a man to kill his wife, a woman to kill her husband or child, etc, etc, and a person to kill someone based on religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or any other reason under the sun. Hate is hate. There is NO NEED to differentiate. It's all ugly, vile, and rotten and any crime committed driven by hate of ANY kind deserves the same punishment.
try to catch the deluge in a paper cup
primroseburrows at 2004-09-28 06:09 (UTC) ()
There is NO NEED to differentiate. It's all ugly, vile, and rotten and any crime committed driven by hate of ANY kind deserves the same punishment.

I agree with you. It's not being done, though, at least not yet, and I think any step in the direction of helping that crimes of this type aren't committed is a good one, and I wonder why the Republicans are trying to stall it.
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