Oct 22 2009

180px-US_Capitol_Building_at_night_Jan_2006 After years and years of waiting and begging, the Congress of the United States has passed the "Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes Bill." Although it is over ten years since Matthew hung from a fence in that desolate Wyoming field, it is a huge victory for all those who care about human rights.

The LGBT community owes many a huge thanks.

Thank you to President Obama for relentlessly pushing this legislation and delivering on his promise - a vow he reiterated at the recent HRC Dinner. Please let's not forget the late Senator Ted Kennedy who worked year in and year out, even when no one else believed, to see this legislation passed. How sad he is not here with us to celebrate. A thank you must go to our Washington-based national organizations who kept working tirelessly, as well as all our straight allies who never gave up when it was rough going.

Special thanks to Speaker Pelosi and Majority Leader Reid in creating the environment for the successful passage of this act. Their skillful and careful legislative maneuvering made possible the passage of this law. Finally thanks to all those members of Congress who voted on our side.