Tell Congress to Pass the Matthew Shepard Act
This action comes directly from the Human Rights Campaign, which has been at the fore for the fight to pass federal hate crimes legislation that protects sexual orientation.
A law protecting all of our citizens against senseless hate violence is long overdue. Last year, both houses of Congress passed a historic hate crimes bill known as the Matthew Shepard Act, which would have outlawed hate crimes based on both sexual orientation and gender identity. But the legislation never made it to President Bush's desk because of his veto threat. Send a message to Congress today. Remind them that America still needs the Matthew Shepard Act to help ensure safety and security for ALL Americans.
As your constituent and a supporter of the Human Rights Campaign, I care deeply about preventing hate crimes, and am writing to ask that you work hard to pass hate crimes legislation that will protect more gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender Americans from bias-motivated violence.
This legislation is long overdue, and 68% of Americans say they support expanding hate crimes laws to include sexual orientation and gender identity. What's more, the bill known as the Matthew Shepard Act, which passed both houses of Congress last session, would provide much-needed resources to local law enforcement officials so they can investigate and prosecute hate crimes.
I am confident that you will champion the will of voters in your community and the majority of Americans, and finally bring our federal hate crime laws into the 21st Century, by ensuring that all of our citizens are protected against senseless hate violence.
While a random act of violence against any individual is always a tragic event, we know that violent crimes based on prejudice are meant to terrorize an entire community
According to a 2004 FBI report, hate crimes based on sexual orientation made up over 15% of all reported hate crimes. Yet these attacks are excluded from current federal hate crimes laws.
As Americans, we must defend our neighbors from becoming victims of bias-motivated hate violence.
Please make it a priority to support hate crimes legislation this session.
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