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The Center for Sexual Pleasure and Health » RI News: RI Governor Carcieri Praised by The Family Research Council

Posted: June 27th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , | 6 Comments »

After Rhode Island Governor Donald Carcieri "vetoed a bill that would have expanded that state's existing hate crimes" laws to make it illegal "to attack or harass a person for their gender expression and/or gender identity," the Family Research Council (FRC) issued praise for his decision. FRC president Tony Perkins said, "it’s troubling that any legislature would invest time and taxpayer monies to consider such a superfluous agenda-driven maneuver. […] Carcieri deserves praise for his strong stance for the families of Rhode Island."

So, in Perkins' hateful mind, genderqueer people aren't part of "families of Rhode Island" and outlawing hate crimes against them is "superfluous." Funny, I think it's "superfluous" to note FRC co-founder George Rekers famously hired a male prostitute and, under current laws, would be protected against hate crimes for that—but not if he were wearing a skirt. No, that, according to Perkins, would be an "agenda."

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6 Comments on “The Center for Sexual Pleasure and Health » RI News: RI Governor Carcieri Praised by The Family Research Council”

  1. 1 Ian said at 5:09 pm on June 28th, 2010:

    It’s important to clarify: Hate crime legislation says that the punishments for harassment and assault will be more severe if it is done out of prejudice. In the absence of hate crime legislation, assault and harassment are still illegal. It’s just not extra-punitive because of its hateful nature. So if someone beats up someone else for being a dude in a skirt, they can still go to jail for it same as if they beat up a dude in pants.

    With the current Matthew Shepard Act, gender-orientation hate crimes are punishable in all 50 states by federal law.

    Keep in mind 5 states still have no hate crime legislation at all, and that doesn’t mean it’s legal to beat up minorities there.

  2. 2 maymay said at 5:49 pm on June 28th, 2010:

    Good point, Ian. I don’t think I was saying criminal assaults were suddenly legal, but rather that Perkins’ assessment of the situation is unequivocally bigoted.

    Keep in mind 5 states still have no hate crime legislation at all

    Really? Which 5 states are those?

  3. 3 Ian said at 1:38 pm on June 29th, 2010:

    Apparently Arizona, Georgia, Indiana, South Carolina, and (surprise surprise) Wyoming have no legislation against hate crimes. Fortunately, under new legislation even if the state doesn’t recognize a difference between crimes and specifically hate crimes, federal authorities may still investigate them.

    I like knowing that hate crime in Wyoming can be investigated and punished with or without the state’s involvement. I hope they appreciate the irony that it’s called the Matthew Shepard Act.

  4. 4 Queer Action of RI said at 12:12 am on July 2nd, 2010:

    To clarify, this hate crimes bill does NOT include enhanced penalties of any kind. It will simply provide free training to police in how to identify hate crimes based on gender identity and expression and allow for the collection of data on these types of crime. Currently in RI, no data is collected on these types of crimes. To help stop such crimes, we need police who can recognize them and to collect data.

  5. 5 maymay said at 12:35 am on July 2nd, 2010:

    this hate crimes bill does NOT include enhanced penalties of any kind. It will simply provide free training to police in how to identify hate crimes based on gender identity and expression and allow for the collection of data on these types of crime

    Wait, now I’m confused. First, is the bill still on the table even after veto or not? From your comment, Queer Action of RI, it sounds like it is because you’re using future-tense words. Second, does the bill affect current law at all, or is it about some other matter? Finally, is the bill itself publicly visible online somewhere?

    As an aside, this kind of situation is a great rationale for why open, “meta” government initiatives are really important…. Anyway, thanks for speaking up. :)

  6. 6 Kink On Tap » Blog Archive » Gender-identity group seeks Carcieri veto override – Projo 7 to 7 News Blog | Rhode Island News | The Providence Journal said at 10:07 pm on July 9th, 2010:

    […] "[GLBT] organizations and their supporters criticized Governor Carcieri," (hell yeah, we did) and today they called on the General Assembly to override the veto. The bill would merely record […]