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It is a crisp cool October morning Two hikers are enjoying a quiet walk through the frost tipped fields of Laramie Wyoming when they are startled by whimpers begging for help They find a young man tied up to a wood fence ready for crucifixion He has been burned bloodied beaten and broken The University of Wyoming student died three days later due to injuries sustained from repeated pistol whippings His name is Matthew Sheppard Matthew was gay His murderers intended to kill him because he was gay Matthew had never hit on them and had not been involved with any of them romantically In fact the murderers had tried to lure Matthew from a bar the night before but were unsuccessful Intent is clearly shown This subject is about more than hurt feelings It is about discrimination prejudice hate and intolerance of sexual orientation that has brought physical harm and death to many gay lesbian bisexual and trans-gendered people Our government is taking steps to split our country into a segregated society- straight versus gay taking us back to the days of Jim Crowe and separate but equal standards After the United States Supreme Court struck down anti-sodomy laws in Lawrence v Texas and the Massachusetts State Supreme Court followed suit in Goodridge et al v The Department of Public Health the concerned right is pushing for a Constitutional Amendment banning gay marriage As society is progressively stepping forward in civil rights why is our government trying to dictate who can obtain their constitutionally granted pursuit of happiness Amendment supporters are ignoring a few things when it comes to gay rights religion and government Gay rights are human rights According to the 2002 Uniform Crime Report 167 of hate crimes committed were against gays and lesbians There are four people a day that is over 1400 citizens of the Land of the Free who are attacked in one year due to their sexual
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