The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the NAACP, and the Southern Poverty Law Center, co-authored a letter asking members of the U.S. House of Representatives to vote no on HR 5698, the “Protect and Serve Act of 2018.” But lawmakers, including Democrats, overwhelmingly voted to pass the legislation the next day.
The bill would establish offenses that target law enforcement officers as a federal crime, imposing penalties that are leading many of its opponents to label it the country’s first national “Blue Lives Matter” bill. Named for the push to “counter” Black Lives Matter, at least 32 of these bills were proposed in state legislatures last year, all intending to increase the penalties against those who harm officers.
…At least 987 people—disproportionately people of color—were shot and killed by police in 2017 and 963 in 2016, according to analysis from the Washington Post.
“Creating a new, yet superfluous, crime for offenses committed against law enforcement is a particularly disconnected and non-responsive policy choice,” the letter continued.
….Civil rights groups believe that the U.S. Senate version of the bill, which was introduced on May 7 by Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and co-sponsored by Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND), is significantly worse because it establishes crimes against law enforcement as hate crimes.
“Not only does [the Senate’s bill] create a new crime by targeting law enforcement, it does it using the hate crimes framework,” Kanya A. Bennett, ACLU legislative counsel, told Rewire.News. “We know that law enforcement is already the most protected class of people given the federal laws that protect them [and] given the state laws that protect them.”
When those enforcing the law are valued by the government as more valuable than the citizenry itself? you have fascism. Fascism. Buckle up people. It’s not going to get pretty from here.