Wow. I can’t believe I’m about to write this…but police officers are technically being considered a “minority group”. Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards signed a bill on Thursday, expanding the state’s hate-crimes statute to add the targeting of police officers, firefighters and EMS personnel.

Posted by: Frankie Zing

Today, a crime is a hate crime if the victim is targeted because of identity-based characteristics such as their race, ethnicity, religion, gender, sexual orientation, etc. The bill stems from the ongoing battle between the Black Lives Matter campaign and those in the line of duty, hoping to cease or at least deflate some of the tension. Louisiana is the first state to take this type of action.

Former police Lt. Randy Sutton of Las Vegas, a 34-year police veteran and spokesman for Blue Lives Matter stated the law is:

“important because symbolically it advises that there is a value to the lives of police officers. When you give value, it acts as a deterrent in one sense, but it also is a tool to add extra punishment for the assaults and the crimes against them.”

The bill flew through both chambers of the Louisiana Legislature, including a unanimous 91-0 margin in the Republican-led House of Representatives.

Louisiana hopes people will realize that these hate crimes towards police officers won’t be tolerated down south.