The Associated Press headline reads: "Trial set to begin in slaying of transgender woman". The murder took place recently in Denver, Colorado and the article goes on to say that the victim was beaten to death with a fire extinguisher. Then the potential seriousness of punishment for the crime is explained - "Andrade, 32, of Thorton, is scheduled to go on trial Tuesday on charges including first-degree murder and a bias-motivated crime, which could add three years to his prison sentence if convicted."
As I recall, the punishment for first-degree murder is either death or life in prison... exactly how does the court add three years to either of those punishments? Do they hold a semi-execution and then pause for three years before finishing the job? Or perhaps, after the prisoner dies of old age, they hold onto the body for an additional three years? Sound silly to you? It's no sillier than adding time to a capital crime based on the fact that you didn't particularly like something about that person. The crime is that the act of murder was committed, not the thought of committing murder! If we were to be imprisoned for our thoughts of doing something against the law, there would be few people walking around our streets. The second crime was committed by the government... in that they created such a stupid law.
I could be wrong about this... and the Constitution could be wrong about "equal protection under the law". Our government, in their infinite wisdom, has created a class that now receives special protection under the law, which is itself a violation of the Constitution.