RI governor’s veto on redefining hate crimes

On June 30, Rhode Island Governor Don Carcieri vetoed a bill designed to expand the state’s definition of a hate crime to include “gender identity” and “gender expression.” The governor said the state’s existing law already addresses actions “motivated by racial, religious, sexual orientation, gender, and disability prejudice;” therefore, the measure was not required.  Caleb H. Price, an analyst for CitizenLink, commended Carcieri for seeing beyond Current Events and for understanding the long-term implications not only for marriage, but also for those struggling with gender confusion. “Those who struggle with gender confusion,” Price said, “deserve our compassion and understanding–not laws that cement them into an identity which denies biological and objective reality.” Governor Carcieri’s term ends in January 2011. Attorney General Patrick Lynch, a strong gay rights advocate, is vying for the seat. 

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