The Senate voted today to extend federal hate-crime protection to people victimized because of their sexuality, but it remained doubtful that the measure would ever become law.
By voice vote and without dissent, the senators attached the hate-crime provision to a seemingly unrelated defense authorization bill, which is needed to run the Defense Department. Attaching the provision to the military bill was intended, at least by some of the provision’s supporters, to force President Bush to choose between accepting the provision or vetoing the military bill. .
The White House has said previously that Mr. Bush opposed the extension of hate-crime protection as “unnecessary and constitutionally questionable” and that he would veto it if it came to him as a stand-alone bill.
But that isn’t to say that I wasn’t still researching and writing up hate crime cases for The LGBT Hate Crimes Project. There’s still no shortage of cases to research and record, and either new ones seem to keep happening every other day or new details are reported in existing cases. So with the hate crimes bill passed in both houses of Congress, and awaiting Bush’s signature or veto stamp, it seems like a good time to report on the progress of the LGBT Hate Crimes Project.
Probably the biggest change to date is the addition of a section for anonymous victims. In the course of researching cases and looking for new ones, I’ve come across some in which the names of the victims have been withheld, sometimes for their own safety, and sometimes because of their status as minors.
This section was added as a place to record cases where the victims are anonymous, but there are enough verifiable sources to write an entry. Cases entered here will be listed in chronological order. So far it contains the following cases:
At least one more new case will be added to this section within the week.
To date, the following cases have been documented at The LGBT Hate Crimes Project.
- Michelle Abdill & Roxanne Ellis
- Paul Broussard
- Ukea Davis & Stephanie Thomas
- Roberto Duncanson
- Bella Evangelista
- Steen Fenrich
- Daniel Fetty
- Jason Gage
- Edgar Garzon
- Erica Keel
- Nireah Johnson
- James Maestas
- Gary Matson & Winfield Mowder
- Niza Morris
- The Otherside Lounge Bombing
- Danny Overstreet
- Richie Phillips
- Dwan Prince
- Julio Rivera
- Michael Sandy
- Emonie Spaulding
- Arthur Warren
- Michael Wrenn
There are at least two and possibly more cases to be added to these within the week, including a write-up of the Josie Smith-Malave beating, and an older case that sounds a lot like the Michael Sandy case. (Which itself is in for an update, given news that the allegedly gay defendant had a girlfriend and gay porn on his computer — for use in luring gay men.)
Meanwhile there are local stories to catch up on like the news that there’s been another attack on a transgender woman in D.C. and the still-unfolding story of an HRC employee attacked while leaving a gay bar and the (not so) shocking news that the gay basher has ties to the Bush administration.
A Georgetown University sophomore, implicated in a gay-bashing by a fellow student, has ties to the Bush Administration, PageOneQ has learned.
19-year-old Philip Anderton Cooney, pictured here in the spring of 2005, is the son of fallen Bush aide and American Petroleum Institute oil lobbyist Phil Cooney.
Phil Cooney was appointed chief of staff with the White House Council on Environmental Quality, suffering criticism for his lack of environmental experience. After his resignation and subsequent hire to a position with ExxonMobil, it was found that Cooney had reportedly tampered with data to support the Bush line on climate change.
Philip Anderton Cooney was identified by the victim and reported to police thanks to his Facebook profile, which contained a photograph. He is being charged with simple assault, which, as a hate crime, carries a jail sentence of up to 270 days, the Washington Post reports. On the morning of September 9, the victim says, he was attacked physically and verbally, including with anti-gay slurs, by Cooney while walking near 36th and O Streets in northwest Washington, DC.
Maybe the administration will invite him to the signing ceremony for the hate crimes act. Or, alternately, let him have the veto stamp as a souvenir. Either way, as I ease myself back into the blogosphere, I’ll keep looking ’em up and writing ’em down.