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‘Blue Lives Matter’: Wisconsin introduces bill to make violence against police a hate crime

Posted by on 21/11/2018

A Wisconsin legislator is introducing a “Blue Lives Matter” Bill to make targeting law enforcement officers a hate crime, following the Dallas shooting that killed five officers last week.

Rep. David Steffen, a Green Bay Republican, announced his proposal Monday, adding Wisconsin to a growing list of states discussing similar bills.

Louisiana became the first state to enact such legislation in May, allowing prosecutors to seek stronger penalties when police, firefighters and emergency medical crews are intentionally targeted because of their professions.

Lawmakers in at least nine other states and at the federal level have floated similar proposals.

Activists are criticizing the growing effort, saying professions don’t belong alongside the other characteristics protected under hate crime laws, such as race, religion or disability.

WATCH: Rep. David Steffen explains why he thinks Wisconsin needs his “Blue Lives Matter” legislation

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    Meanwhile, a solemn memorial service was held in Dallas, Texas Tuesday for the five officers killed in the deadly shooting last week.

    The featured speaker was U.S. President Barack Obama, who asked whether Americans can see in themselves a common humanity and recognize how different experiences have shaped people’s perceptions.

    WATCH: Obama praises Dallas police at memorial for slain officers; urges U.S. to ‘reject despair’

    Obama says, at times, he has doubts, saying “I’ve been to too many of these things.”

    The memorial service concluded with the elected officials and guests on stage holding hands as “Battle Hymn of the Republic” was sung.

    Audience members also held hands during the song.

    Former President George W. Bush, holding hands with first lady Michelle Obama, smiled and swayed as the song played. The first lady sat next to the former president during the ceremony and patted his left hand warmly to show appreciation for his comments.

    Before walking off stage, President Barack Obama, Michelle Obama, Bush and Laura Bush turned and applauded the audience of uniformed police officers.

    The pictures of the five officers killed dominated the stage after the speakers had left.

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