CLOSED :A Moral Imperative: Tell the Senate to Pass the Matthew Shepard Act

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UPDATE: CONGRESS MAY ACT ON THIS AS EARLY AS THIS WEEK -- Call your senators now!

From Human Rights Campaign:

Breaking news: the Senate will likely vote on the Matthew Shepard Act as early as this week. And right now, your Senators' phone lines are filling up with messages like this one: "[The Matthew Shepard Act] will be used to fund anti-Christian, pro-homosexual/drag queen materials for children – and divert scarce federal resources away from fighting Islamic terrorism."

Anti-gay groups like the Family Research Council and the Traditional Values Coalition – who invented that ridiculous lie – have mobilized a dangerously misinformed grassroots army. If we don't call right now, critical votes COULD BE LOST to these scare tactics.

Enter your zip code in the Contact Contress button on the left side bar and tell your senator that you support strong hate crimes legislation.

 

Original posting:

I remember where I was when I read online that a young man in Wyoming had been tied to a fence post and beaten nearly to death, then left for dead only to be found 18 hours later, barely alive, and then when I learned within days that he had died. His name was Matthew Shepard and he was killed because some men in a bar felt threatened because they pereived him to be gay.

According to Human Rights Campaign, 1 in 6 hate crimes are committed against people because of their sexual orientation or gender presentation, and 68 percent of people support the addition of sexual orientation and gender identity to federal hate crimes protection categories, yet federal laws so far include no such protetion.

The Matthew Shepard Act is about to come up for a vote in the US Senate. It passed already in the House of Representatives. It would add sexual orientation and gender identity to the list of hate crimes categories.

Click here and watch a short, and very powerful video about why this legislation is important, and then sign the petition telling your senators that attacking someone because of sexual orientation or gender identity should be considered a hate crime, just as attacking a person because of their race or religion.

Click here to listen to a clip incredibly evocative song about Matthew Shepard by one of my favorite New York area bands. (I'ts only a clip, and I'm not sharing it with you so you'll buy the music, but instead because emotion is so often the motivating force behind action that I'm trying to influence your emotions, shamelessly, with powerful visual and aural imagery!)

Don't want to watch a video (even though it uses Cyndi Lauper's "All through the night" or listen to Nekked's "Sleeping with the lights on"? Just click here to sign the petition and make sure your Senator knows that you think ti's wrong to attack people because they appear to be anything other than a heterosexual man or woman.

"Until it ends, there is no end." (All through the night, by Cyndi Lauper)

And we need to end it, now.