The following is a statement from Give a Damn Campaign founder Cyndi Lauper about the 13th Anniversary of the passing of Matthew Shepard as a result of a brutal hate crime in Laramie, WY.
Today is 13 years since Matthew Shepard’s death. His mother, father and brother, with the help of the late Senator Ted Kennedy, the Human Rights Campaign and President Barack Obama, worked tirelessly to make the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr Hate Crimes Prevention Act, aka the Matthew Shepard Act, a reality in 2010. To all of them, as well as the people who worked on and supported the first True Colors Tour, all the people who contacted their senators and representatives urging them to push the hate crimes amendment through, and all of the countless others who got involved – I thank you.
I had stopped believing for a minute that anything could really change until I got involved and became inspired by people who volunteer endlessly to work for change when things aren’t right. I know we can still change the quality of life for all, for the better. Funny what I remember sometimes. I heard Judy Shepard say once that Matthew had wanted to go into to politics. I guess in a big way he did.
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