“Equal” Protection Under the Law?

This story from OneNewsNow highlights how hate crimes laws like the one mentioned in Washington state base part of the punishment for crimes on whether the victim was a member of a protected class. The story gives an interesting example when it says:

The law creates different classes of people depending on who the crime is committed against. For example, one could rob their grandmother — which is obviously a crime — but would pay a higher penalty if they robbed someone who is transgendered.

The question becomes: Does this adhere to the guarantee of “equal protection under the law” in the Fourteenth Amendment? It’s debatable and doubtful.

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