In the realm of politics, there are a lot of misunderstood issues, and “hate-crimes” legislation is one of them. It seems harmless on the surface, but don’t let appearances fool you—it could be used to stifle and even prosecute religious speech.

The Matthew Shepherd Hate Crimes Act (S.909), which is ready to be voted on this week in the U.S. Senate (probably as an amendent to the Defense Authorization Bill), would grant the Department of Justice alarming, broad-sweeping power. If passed, the DOJ would be authorized to investigate and prosecute certain bias-motivated crimes based on the victim’s actual or perceived sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, or disability.

We have known for quite some time that “hate-crimes” legislation is primarily a tool being used by gay activists, with its main purpose being to silence those who speak out against homosexuality. For example, say your pastor gave a sermon about how the Bible opposes homosexuality, and then a person commits an act of violence against a gay individual—blaming his actions on the pastor’s sermon. Your pastor could then be prosecuted!

This is just one example of many, and it’s not just pastors that are in danger–it’s everyone who would publicly proclaim their opposition to homosexuality. In the end, “hate-crimes” legislation is more about prosecuting thought and not someone’s actual crime. It also gives special rights to certain groups, granting them the status of “protected classes” above other citizens. What ever happened to equal protection under the law as individuals? Justice isn’t about picking favorites.

The Matthew Shepherd Hate Crimes Act must be stopped. Call Senators Lincoln and Pryor and tell them you oppose this bill—and all “hate-crimes” legislation.

Senator Blanche Lincoln
(202) 224-4843 (Washington, D.C.)
1-800-352-9364 (Toll Free)
Click to e-mail Senator Lincoln:

Senator Mark Pryor
(202) 224-2353 (Washington, D.C.)
(877) 259-9602 (Toll Free)
Click to e-mail Senator Pryor: