Wednesday, April 15, 2009

What it Feels Like to be Gay Bashed

The scariest thing about gay bashing is that it can happen suddenly, anytime, and anywhere. Even in Canada.

Even in a gay-friendly place like Montreal.

And with that came the first punch – straight to the nose. I barely had time to realize what was happening when a second strike hit the side of my temple. Several more punches followed, all while I kept shouting a steady pulse of “fuck off”s and “get the fuck away from me's. "

Something about this story bothers me. Not just the speed with which insane hatred explodes into violence. Because I've seen it with my own eyes.

Or the cowards that fight in packs. Because I had to fight others like them for YEARS. In fact, when S├ębastien first bumped into me, in a bar not far from where this guy was attacked, I was beating a bully bloody with a pool cue. So I know all about senseless violence.

And the part about the good samaritan didn't bother me either.

I was thankful this person came by, and I turned to her, if only to find comfort in a pair of sympathetic eyes. She looked at me, and in a pathetic act of consolation, motioned in the direction of the assailants and said, “Don’t worry, those guys are just faggots.”

Because sadly it's so TYPICAL. And just another sign of the problem.

So I guess it must be this that bothers me:

It took me a long time to compose myself. I was furious. I refused police intervention, medical attention, and even consolation from friends. I thought I was fine. I thought I could just shake it off. In hindsight, I wish I had realized that, yes, that’s blood coming out of your nose. Yes, that’s a piece of your tooth you just spat out. No, you are not okay.

Because where did David ever get the idea he should just shake it off? Why didn't he get the police involved? Doesn't he realize that a crime that isn't reported is like a crime that never happened?

So the guilty won't be punished, and the violence will go on and on.

But who can blame him? Being attacked suddenly....just for who you are.... is shocking and traumatizing.

You know it's easy to say that gay kids should take martial arts and learn to fight like I did. But why should gentle people have to become as violent their enemies?

Because David did get one thing REALLY right:

Fuck those guys. Fuck their views on life. Fuck the way they express themselves. I do not have a problem. I am not at fault. I will continue to eat my pizza and wear the tightest pants I fucking want.

Because nobody should have to apologize for being gay. Or for wearing tight pants. Or be attacked just for who they are.

Basher bullies are cowardly scum.

And the streets belong to EVERYONE...


Chrystal Ocean said...

Beautifully written and a sad statement on the status of gays in this country and the bigotry which is still goes unchallenged.

Jennifer Smith said...

I read that and just kept thinking about this story that I saw today.

Hate kills. It cannot be allowed to continue. Not in any form. Not for any reason. Fuck 'em.

Simon said...

Hi Chrystal Ocean...thanks...and yes I'm proud to live in a country that has done so much to advance the cause of gay rights. But there is still so much work to be done, especially in our schools..

Simon said...

Hi Jennifer...yes I saw that story and what a tragic one it is. The poor little boy how sad and unnecessary.
And yup hate kills. I think a lot of Canadians would be surprised to know how common gay bashing is. But unfortunately a lot of victims are too tramatized or ashamed to report the attacks, so not enough is done to fight the problem and it just goes on and on...

mikeyaustudent said...

if you were gay bashed in montreal
70s early 80s or know someone who was i have a name and photo and contact info 4 one of these thugs he now lives in edmonton

Anonymous said...

Montreal's strip bar "Stock Bar" was the scene of my being bashed. Yes, staff ("we're all straight") grabbed my cash and broke my arm. 2 surgeries. MTL is dangerous, mafia run, homophobic - downright hateful. Avoid.