Hate crimes statistics: almost one every hour
I have been affected by hate crimes against gays. I have two friends in wheelchairs because of gay bashing. A friend, Paul Broussard, a twenty-eight year old banker, was beaten with boards and pipes by five young people. Gays have their own media, which I follow. The mainstream media rarely reports these crimes unless there is a death or very serious injury.
The U.S. Senate yesterday passed the Hate Crimes Prevention Act, named for Matthew Shepard, the young man who died at a Fort Collins hospital in 1998 after being beaten in Wyoming by men who targeted him because he was gay. Democratic lawmakers championed the bill. Senator Kennedy long championed the bill. Republicans largely opposed it.At least four Republicans voted with theDemocrats, reportedly to end a possible filibuster. They were Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe of Maine, as well as George Voinovich of Ohio, and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska. The vote was 68-29. I was surprised that both my Texas senators voted for the bill--Hutchinson and Cornyn.The president will sign the Act into law in the coming days.
FBI hate crime data shows that attacks founded on sexual orientation continue to be characterized by a high level of violence, with a higher proportion of personal assaults than in other categories of hate crime. Some victims faced serious injury or death.
Colorado U.S. Sen.Michael Bennet lauded the passage of the measure.
“As we learned in the civil rights era, sometimes communities need assistance and resources from the federal government when they have to confront the most emotional and dangerous kinds of crimes.”
In the nearly twenty years since the 1990 enactment of the Hate Crime Statistics Act (HCSA), the number of hate crimes reported has consistently ranged around 7,500 or more annually — that’s nearly one every hour of every day,” says a new study by the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights Education Fund (LCCREF), the research arm of the oldest and largest civil rights coalition in the United States.
There were 29 votes against:
Feingold voted against the bill for reasons other that the hate crime section.