Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Why This Is Important

Today is the lobbying day with the HRC Clergy Call. We're spending the morning in lobbying training. As I sat down in the bench marked "Michigan," I introduced myself to a man standing in the aisle from South Carolina. He told me about his step-son, Sean William Kennedy. Sean was in his twenties when he was killed in an anti-gay hate crime. His murderer got a very short jail sentence, cut shorter because hr earned his GED.

Some people don't believe hate crime legislation is necessary, because it's already covered by other laws. I invite them to learn about Sean: http://www.seanslastwish.org. And another quick answer... This federal legislation kicks in when local law enforcement doesn't adequately prosecute, for example because of prejudice.

1 comment:

Robin Edgar said...

I had a look Cynthia and I can't help but notice that Sean's killer was ordered to take anger management classes and drug and alcohol counseling but there is absolutely no mention of him having to enter into any form of counseling about his anti-gay bigotry which clearly seems to be the motivation aka root cause of his vicious assault on Sean. I am glad to see that Sean's mother is standing up for her murdered son and other GBLT people and demanding a higher level of accountability for this serious crime. I am someone who does believe in rehabilitative justice but, as someone who has been sucker punched both literally and figuratively a few times, I have very little sympathy for Sean's bigoted, cowardly, and abusive killer and believe that he should face more jail time and should be obliged to participate in a program that directly addresses his anti-gay intolerance and bigotry.