Kentucky has become the latest state to make it a hate crime for anyone to attack a police officer.
HB 14, unofficially known as the Blue Lives Matter Bill, was signed into law by Republican Governor Matt Bevin.
The legislation expands the definition of hate crimes to include police officers, fire fighters, and emergency medical technicians (EMTs) as protected classes when they are assaulted while performing their duties.
With this law, criminals who attack any of the above can face stiffer penalties, and make it more easy for probation and parole to be denied.
According to the law, whether or not a crime is determined to be a hate crime or not is to be decided by a judge during the sentencing phase of the criminal proceedings.
The bill was first introduced by Kentucky representative Kevin Bratcher, after the Dallas shooting of five police officers at the hands of a black supremacist, in July of 2016.
As it was moving through the legislative process, the bill was met with stiff resistance from the Left, and was accused of being racist and divisive.
WFPL reports that Chanelle Helm, a member of Louisville’s Black Lives Matter chapter, said,
“I think we do need to understand where racism comes from and how it was created, and how bills like this are meant to further divide.”
Democratic Representative Attica Scott accused the bill of disproportionately targeting minorities,
“I’m concerned that HB 14 will give this kind of fear-mongering a license to charge me with a hate crime for doing what my ancestors did during the Civil Rights Movement — standing up for the diversity of our state and the most vulnerable of our communities.”
It’s unclear how such a law would “target” minority communities, as all a person has to do to avoid the stiffer penalties is to not attack police officers, fire fighters, or EMTs. If Scott feels that this poses a problem for members of minority communities, then the problem would appear to not be with the law itself.
However, Representative Bratcher has countered with,
“You guys don’t know what’s in my heart and I don’t know what’s in your heart, but I don’t know how anybody could vote against this bill.”
Kentucky is now the second state to offer this type of legislation that increases the penalties for attacking the police. What do you think about the new law?
Source: HB 14- Kentucky Legislature
Source: Fox News