IN THE COMMENTS: n.n linked to an item from 2004, "New Details Emerge in Matthew Shepard Murder," which was about an episode of "20/20," which I see that I blogged about this material at the time and said:
Justice demands that we think clearly about criminal responsibility and not let our minds be clouded by evocative stories that mesh with our assumptions about the world and our social policy aspirations. I believe the cause of gay rights is a very good one, and I also think that if the cause is good, truth should serve it. If you think your cause is so important that you must put it ahead of the truth, you are deeply confused.Then I watched the episode "20/20" and thought it was a murky collection of "interviews with people who had plenty of reason to lie."
Now that the public's strong reaction to the original "gay panic" story is known, the two murderers have every motivation to say it wasn't like that at all. And the people of Laramie can't appreciate having their town associated with bigotry, so they too have a motivation to retell the story. I have no idea what is true here. Since the men weren't convicted of a "hate crime" and, in any event, they pleaded guilty, their convictions are sound whether their motivation was robbery or bigotry.I haven't looked into the new articles enough to know how much more there is, but Andrew Sullivan is interviewing the author of what is a new book, "The Book of Matt: Hidden Truths About the Murder of Matthew Shepard."