"You know, as a nation we’ve come far on the journey towards a more perfect union. And today, we’ve taken another step forward. This afternoon, I signed into law the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act.
This is the culmination of a struggle that has lasted more than a decade. Time and again, we faced opposition. Time and again, the measure was defeated or delayed. Time and again we’ve been reminded of the difficulty of building a nation in which we’re all free to live and love as we see fit. But the cause endured and the struggle continued, waged by the family of Matthew Shepard, by the family of James Byrd, by folks who held vigils and led marches, by those who rallied and organized and refused to give up, by the late Senator Ted Kennedy who fought so hard for this legislation and all who toiled for years to reach this day.
You understood that we must stand against crimes that are meant not only to break bones, but to break spirits — not only to inflict harm, but to instill fear. You understand that the rights afforded every citizen under our Constitution mean nothing if we do not protect those rights — both from unjust laws and violent acts. And you understand how necessary this law continues to be.
In the most recent year for which we have data, the FBI reported roughly 7,600 hate crimes in this country. Over the past 10 years, there were more than 12,000 reported hate crimes based on sexual orientation alone. And we will never know how many incidents were never reported at all.
And that’s why, through this law, we will strengthen the protections against crimes based on the color of your skin, the faith in your heart, or the place of your birth. We will finally add federal protections against crimes based on gender, disability, gender identity, or sexual orientation. And prosecutors will have new tools to work with states in order to prosecute to the fullest those who would perpetrate such crimes. Because no one in America should ever be afraid to walk down the street holding the hands of the person they love. No one in America should be forced to look over their shoulder because of who they are or because they live with a disability."
i'm pretty excited that this was said by the leader of our nation.
it sucks that i had to wait twenty years to make my first Halloween costume, but I'm excited about it.
i've decided that i don't want to be bitter about the way i was raised.
my parents loved me so much they fought for me to live the life they thought was right, but it isn't the life for me and i think we've all come to accept that.
i've been bitter about a bunch of things for quite sometime, and i've realized its time to let go of those feelings of betrayal and move on.
i like the person i am, i have a lot to improve on, but all in all, i am okay with ME.
people who are not okay with the way i live my life can be divided into two categories: closed- minded, specious friends and people who care about me, but can only see life as they perceive it.
like i said, i'm far from perfect: i'm impulsive, irresponsible, socially awkward and self-centered
but i'm not a bad person and i should stop thinking of myself as one.
tegan and sara