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Wednesday, April 18, 2007

The Matthew Shepared Act

(AP) Clergy from across the country gathered on Capitol Hill Tuesday to call for passage of the Matthew Shepard Act and the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, as hearings began for the Shepard hate crime bill.
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"We are people of faith, and we also have a commitment to truth," said the Rev. William Sinkford, president of the Unitarian Universalist Association.

"Much of the rhetoric in opposition to these bills is blatantly and inexcusably false. So let me be clear: These laws would not create quotas or force churches to hire people who do not share their religious values. These laws will not criminalize free speech or impede religious expression in any way. These laws do not undermine a single constitutional right. In fact, the contrary is true."

The Matthew Shepard Act, also known as the Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act, was named for the gay college student who was killed in a homophobic attack in Wyoming in 1998. It was introduced in the Senate last week. A similar bill was reintroduced in the House last month.

The bill would allow the Department of Justice to assist local authorities in investigating and prosecuting cases in which violence occurs and add gays and lesbians to the categories protected under the legislation.

The Employment Non-Discrimination Act would address discrimination in the workplace by making it illegal to fire, refuse to hire or refuse to promote an employee simply based on the person's sexual orientation or gender identity. It would reinforce the principle that employment decisions should be based on a person's qualifications and job performance.

1 comment:

Ruben said...

The real Matthew Sheapard act should be hunting down and torturing all gay bashers.