The Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act, also known as the Matthew Shepard Act, passed in the House on April 29. During the floor debate, Rep. Foxx from North Carolina said of Matthew Shepard's 1998 murder "But we know...it wasn't because he was gay. The bill was named for him but it's really a hoax."
Rep. Foxx apologizes for her semantics, not for her utterly offensive and ignorant remarks. I can't say I'm surprised. You say its unfortunate that things get blow out of proportion? I think it's unfortunate that Rep. Foxx is so misinformed. I am saddened by the fact that she did not support the Hate Crimes bill, but more so by her choice to ignore the brutal crimes that are committed against LGBT individuals because of who they are. During the floor debate in the House, Rep. Alcee Hastings from FL reminded us that "we cannot legislate love, but we can legislate against hate."
Why is that so hard for people to accept? Please continue to inform your elected officials about the importance of Hate Crimes legislation.
Yesterday's NYTimes Editorial on the Matthew Shepard Act.