Kentucky is one signature away from becoming only the second state in the country to adopt a “Blue Lives Matter” bill into law.
This wrongheaded measure opens hate crime statutes to include professions for the first time. History is what is needed to justify a hate crime, and it simply doesn’t exist with first responders in our commonwealth. Not only are there enhanced penalties for those who inflict violence on our first responders, there is positively no record that crimes against first responders have been treated frivolously.
House Bill 14 is designed as a backhanded response to the Black Lives Matter Movement, and will only further strain relationships between police and communities of color.
Gov. Matt Bevin should veto HB 14 because it is an empty gesture that does nothing to protect our first responders.
If we really care about protecting those who protect us, let’s start over in 2018 and move legislation that would fund conflict deescalation strategies and cultural diversity training.
ACLU of Kentucky