Target: Rep. Lance Harris, Louisiana Speaker of the House
Goal: Do not pass the ambiguous “Blue Lives Matter” bill which could be used to hurt innocent citizens.
A Louisiana House committee successfully advanced a bill that would make targeting police officers specifically because they are police officers a hate crime. There was no opposition to the bill, which has been dubbed Louisiana’s “Blue Lives Matter” bill.
House Majority Leader Rep. Lance Harris (R-District 25) argued in favor of the bill by saying the police were under attack, citing widely-publicized incidents where police officers were killed in the line of duty. Examples included the 2014 killing of two NYPD officers during protests over the death of Eric Garner and a Houston, Texas deputy killed at a gas station last year. The latter killing yielded no evidence that the deputy was killed because of his involvement in law enforcement, despite Rep. Harris’ claim otherwise.
Other incidents used to justify the legislation were actually incidents where police officers shot themselves, such as the carefully-staged suicide of Lt. Charles Gliniewicz, which wasn’t revealed until after a large-scale manhunt for an alleged killer that did not exist. Gliniewicz staged the suicide out of fear his longtime corruption was about to come to light.
Rep. Harris’ statements and the “Blue Lives Matter” bill insinuates that movements like Black Lives Matter and increasing public scrutiny of police misconduct are leaving police officers easy targets for slaughter. It implies that the killing of police officers is a direct result of such movements and criticism. Rep. Harris’ comments perpetuate a widely-accepted view that there exists a “War on Cops,” even though there is absolutely no evidence to support the notion.
Sign the petition to tell the Louisiana House of Representatives that this is irresponsible legislation and a waste of time and resources. There is no “War on Cops” and legislation that insinuates there is will cause more harm.
Dear Mr. Speaker,
A protected class depends on factors like race, gender, and religion; not occupation. While it is true that some police officers meet an unfortunate end in the line of duty, there is no “War on Cops” and insinuating otherwise, especially through the legislative process, will only contribute to a false narrative.
This legislation is not based on fact. It is based on unsubstantiated rhetoric and misinformation. It based on fear and confusion. This bill to denote police killings “hate crimes” has been drafted, in part, using stories that are deficient of evidence that police were targeted because they were police. Some of the inspiration even comes from stories where police harmed themselves, such as the carefully-staged suicide of Lt. Charles Gliniewicz.
This legislation also paints the Black Lives Matter movement as a destructive force bent on harming police officers and paints the men and women who scrutinize police ethics as being complicit in the deaths of police officers.
It is with this in mind that we urge you to keep the “Blue Lives Matter” bill from passing through the Louisiana legislature.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Dave Conner