Today U.S. President Barack Obama signed the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Hate Crimes Act into law, adding “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” to the list of federally recognized classes. This is the fruition of 10 years of work for the parents of Matthew Shepard, a young gay man whose brutal murder made national news. The Matthew Shepard Foundation issued a statement in response, expressing their gratitude. This is a notable step forward for the cause of equality.

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