Obama signs Matthew Shepard Act

President Obama today signed the Matthew Shepard-James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act into law. The law is named after Matthew Shepard, a Wyoming college student tortured and killed because he was gay, and James Byrd, a black man lynched by white supremacists.

The Matthew Shepard-James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act gives the Justice Department the power to investigate and prosecute bias-motivated violence, where the perpetrator has selected the victim because of the person’s actual or perceived race, color, religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or disability.

The San Francisco Fog R.F.C. stands united in working towards a future in which such acts never occur.

In the first video below, Matthew Shepard’s mother, Judy Shepard, speaks about her son’s life. The second video recounts James Byrd’s murder and its aftermath.