March 08, 2007

Hate-Crime Laws Are Needed, For the Entire Nation

Currently, the level of protection GLBT people have varies greatly depending on the state in which they happen to live. A federal hate crimes law would go a long way toward rectifying that, and it might become a reality in this Congress.

Here is an op/ed in The Advocate written by Judy Sheppard, mother of the late Matthew Sheppard, and Joe Solmonese, making the case for passage of this important legislation and telling us why they think it will happen.

Remember, this is not the granting of "special rights" like right wing opponents would like people to believe. Instead, this is protecting people and leveling the playing field and helping to insure them equal protection under the law.

1 comment:

  1. Yes, they most certainly are NEEDED (sorry about the nitpick, Jim). My own state -- North Dakota -- has nothing about bias crimes against LGBT. We don't even have a data collection statute, which means that we can't even see by the stats released by the FBI how many victims there really have been. It's come up a couple times in the Legislature, but . . . well, we see they got voted down pretty quick.

    And my state is most certainly not alone. I see by a quick bit of internet research (google is your friend) that far too many states don't have data collection statutes. Yet the 'religious' right use the low (and obviously inacurate) FBI stats to claim that we don't need the hate-crime laws.