|It could happen to you or me. He was just another gay person.
Now he is OUR gay person. He is our martyr. We have had others.
There was Stonewall. There have been many others. Far too many others.
What happened? Didn't you hear? They killed him because he was GAY! They had been so very carefully taught to hate. To them, he was not human or possibly less than human. Interestingly, this is a theme that plays all through history. They did the same thing in Germany to the Jews and the Gays.
The sad thing is that all over the country crimes are perpetrated on gays because they are gay and nothing is done about it. In one Georgia city, a gay person could be riding through the town and be pulled over by the police just becaue they had a rainbow sticker on the car. The officer proceeds to break a tail lamp and then say that the person was driving with no tail lamp. Some how people go out of their way to do harm to gay persons.
Many straight people claim to believe in equality under the law and feel the existing laws are sufficient. I find it interesting that these same people are blind to the fact that the police are part of the problem. Many officers will ignore crimes done to gay persons. This may not be true in some of the larger cities or of all police, but by and large, it is true.
The point of hate crimes legislation is that it would be a federal crime to commit crimes of this type. The injured persons or, in this case, the family of the dead person would have recourse outside of the narrow confines of the bigoted, narrow jurisdiction in which they may live.