Priority of Hate Crimes Legislation

Priority of Hate Crimes Legislation

April 21, 2009 Community Outreach Hate Crimes LGBT Action Alerts LGBT News 1

Perhaps as if in response to the poll and post yesterday on jaysays and discussions during the 2009 Twitter Town Hall Meeting for LGBT Activists, the HRC released an action alert today which states, in part:

Congress could vote as soon as NEXT WEEK on the hate crimes bill that would give LGBT people the protections they need and deserve, and honor the memory of Judy’s son [Matthew Shepard].

This action alert forces our hand in the debate over prioritizing “Gay Rights.”  It is obvious we cannot sit idlely by and allow this bill to fail.  Therefore, HRC is encouraging all to contact their representatives and encourage them to vote “yes” on H.R. 1913, also known as the Matthew Shepard Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act.

The letter proposed by HRC (linked above) makes the following statement contradicting the lies and deceitfulness that so-called holy folk are perpetuating in a nice little nutshell:

The opponents of the bill are throwing up a smokescreen, claiming it will stifle free speech and undermine organized religion. You must reject these false, misleading arguments. To help protect our communities from the terror and brutality of hate-driven violence, please stand up for civil rights and vote for the Matthew Shepard Act.

The right, in a way that only they can distort truth and law, claims that such legislation would prevent preachers from preaching that homosexuality is a sin.  BOGUS.  The U.S. Constitution secures our right of free speech along with their right.  The legislation aims to target violent crimes against LGBT people – not ideology or mythology.  In fact, the current hate crimes act of 1994 would simply expand to include sexual orientation and [hopefully in final form] gender identity.  The current bill only applies when a person: “willfully causes bodily injury to any person or, through the use of fire, a firearm, or an explosive or incendiary device, attempts to cause bodily injury to any person, because of the actual or perceived race, color, religion, or national origin of any person.”  Obviously, preaching lies at the pulpit is not included.

Another argument against H.R. 1913 is: laws against violent crimes already exist, why introduce new law?  Actually H.R. 1913 is not geared to introduce “new law” per se.  The bill clearly states its intent in the introduction:

To provide Federal assistance to States, local jurisdictions, and Indian tribes to prosecute hate crimes, and for other purposes.

So, yeah.  More lies from those that believe it is a sin to lie.

Click here to read the full text of H.R. 1913 and make a decision for yourself.

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One Response

  1. pngwnz says:

    I’m glad you posted this because it is really important.

    Here is a quote from an HRC email I received, and acted on this morning:

    “Our opponents want Congress to believe that the Matthew Shepard Act will brand pastors as criminals for giving a Sunday sermon. It’s nonsense, and they know it. The bill has specific free speech protections and targets only violent acts.”

    Your help is appreciated everybody !

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