hate crime

Christina Engela's picture

Sorry, I'm Hatred-Intolerant

Why do some men feel that being gay is somehow an affront to their masculinity? What are they so afraid of?

Their own sexuality and of falling out of the closet? That, or are they afraid gay men have bigger dicks? I know some women who have bigger balls. Oh wait, I am one.

Let a girl just choose a girl over a man, and they feel they are "less of a man" for it and get all defensive, as if it has anything at all to do with them. That's right - they seem to think that a woman's taste in men (or women) actually affects them! Geez! Talk about insecurities, issues and mental problems! ... or is that ego? Nah, try arrogance.

Take for example the turd that beat up the three lesbians in the bar in Jeffreysbay last weekend. That's right, a turd. Why? Because he saw three girls there and approached them, and when they politely told him after his badgering, that they weren't interested in his advances because they were gay, he took it personally tried to force himself on one of them. Then he decided to beat up on them for daring to reject him.
Christina Engela's picture

Hate The Sin, Hate The Sinner

Where I come from, being called a bigot used to be an insult, and being called bigoted was an accusation people used to take very seriously. Considering that I grew up in South Africa during the last years of the Apartheid regime, and was schooled under its influence, this is a revealing scenario.

In those days, liberals used to refer to people as bigots because they were supporting and defending racist policies, and were very enthusiastic about it. Very often, the same people used to "categorically deny" being bigoted and would take such accusations very personally while often going to extremes - very often religious extremes - to try to justify their bigotry.

The landscape has changed since then, both politically and socially. As we are so often reminded, queer is the new black. There are no true "conservative" parties in this country today of the same ilk as there is a Conservative Party in the UK for example. No, here we have some small minority parties which are called conservative only because they are staunchly religious fundamentalist in nature and cannot in their minds or in their policies separate the concepts of politics and their particular religions.

Such conservative parties, which despite their claims of speaking on behalf of all "true" Christian South Africans, only form a very small, very vocal minority in the country. Perhaps this is fortunate, because their policies are radical and their reactions to democratic ideals such as freedom, equality and liberty - well, reactionary - and they scare away the moderates. They hijack the stage and the microphone away from the moderate majority and take pride in blurring the lines between church and state, fact and fiction - and actively pursue their goals of spreading malicious myths and slanderous "ex-gay" propaganda in South African culture in order to cultivate their support base.
Christina Engela's picture

Alternative Healing

I was impressed by two stories this week. I know, it is only Tuesday, but I am already beginning to think it will take something pretty extraordinary to top the past few days, at least for me - and at least, in the field of human rights in South Africa. The first one I am going to mention is the publicized signing of a memorandum against homophobic hatred caused by religious fundamentalism and the patriarchy - signed by some well-known religious figures in Cape Town. Yes, this is good news - and it certainly shows that not all Christians are out to prove the right wing claim that to be a Christian is to be a fundamentalist fanatic with homicidal anti-gay tendencies. But then again, I could be wrong. The tiler working in my bathroom some time ago told me in confidence, that he "hates things what is skew", but he could have been referring to the tiles.

This brings me to the second item, about a lady by the name of Liana Munnik, who was brutally assaulted - so badly that she ended up in hospital. The reason? Because she is gay. Her assailant? A married woman who kicked her repeatedly between her legs until she lost consciousness, and was unable to defend herself or walk away - a woman who screamed homophobic abuse at her - among other things, that she was "an abomination in the eyes of God", "going to hell" and that she was going to "kick her straight". The woman's husband reportedly prevented her friend from intervening, by throwing her to the ground and holding her down with his knee on her neck. See the newspaper reports: ‘I will kick you straight’ and 'Lesbian kicked to 'convert' her'.
Christina Engela's picture

They Got Him In The End - Or Did They?


Dr Aubrey Levin, aka the Dr Mengele of Apartheid South Africa has finally run foul of the law. He was arrested in Canada last week for abusing a Canadian man at his practice. It seems that old habits die hard. "Dr Shock" as he was called back in the old days, used to torture gay and lesbian military personnel to try and turn them straight. Amazingly enough the folks at your local friendly neighborhood "ex-gay" ministry have been trying to that for decades too - and haven't been having much success either. Most intelligent people already know that it is nigh impossible to "straighten" what was made "skew" in the first place, to paraphrase an Afrikanerism. For those not smart enough to bluff their way out of Levin's grasp, (shouting "Praise the Lord, I'm healed!") he performed forcible sex-changes on them - and according to some sources, many of these were intentionally botched.

Only one thing can define such actions to me - an intense hatred.

I managed to just avoid him in my own term in the South African Army - luckily he had already left by then. I did my whole transition in the Army. It could have worked out very differently if he were still there of course. As it was, I picked up lots of horrific tales from "family" who had been there - or still worked in the military medical environment, of days gone by. All told me how lucky I was to have missed them.
Christina Engela's picture

Crying Wolf

"In a multiple-bias incident [of reported hate crime], two conditions must be met: (a) more than one offense type must occur in the incident and (b) at least two offense types must be motivated by different biases."

Sounds like the definitive intro to an episode of "Law & Order", doesn't it?

If there were no statistics to show the high incidence of hate crimes committed against GLBTIQ people specifically on the grounds of their sexual orientation or gender identity, the Religious Right could go on making false claims that hate crime is "thought crime" and that the concept of hate crime was no more than a gay rights propaganda tool, and that it is their religion which is under attack, and not the pink community. In fact, this is exactly why they have been fighting tooth and claw to stop the passage of hate crimes laws. Why? Because without them, the FBI could not legitimately record such crimes - and the statistics would not be made available - and they could go on trying to obscure the fact that GLBTIQ people are indeed under attack - by themselves.

The recent passage of hate crimes laws in the USA have made such statistics valid and are currently available on the FBI website. To start off with, yes, these are American statistics - but as in America, the bigots and anti-gay activists in South Africa echo the very same rhetoric and follow the very same strategies as they do there, in fact to a large extent they have been influenced and even mentored by the American religious right. If accurate hate crime statistics were available in this country, there is no doubt in my mind they would reflect a very similar result demographically.

The FBI reported the following reported incidents of hate crime involving physical violence in the USA in 2008:
Christina Engela's picture

Logic Bomb

There are a few things that have stood out to me in my campaign for equality for the pink community.  Of these, one that stands out the most is the liturgy used by people who fight against gay rights - who call equal civil rights for GLBTI people "special rights".  This is of course a horrific lie - made all the more so by the underlying hatred and malice concealed by the simplistic and exclusionary reasoning they employ.

You see, whether they agree with equal civil rights for gay people, or not - the truth is that heterosexual people are a majority - a majority which is largely in control of society.  As such, those among them who are anti-gay and anti-diversity are through their narrow-minded reactionary stance, trying to protect their own status. In plain English, they are the ones who have "special rights", not us - and this explains their drive to prevent us from achieving true legal and social equality with them - because it is fairly plain to see that many of them, particularly on religious grounds, view having equal rights with us as "persecution".

Christina Engela's picture

Headlines & Deadlines

I often marvel at news headlines like the examples I have listed below:

"Controversial Daily Mail journalist addresses gay event
Daily Mail columnist Melanie Phillips spoke last night about the danger of “criminalising religious beliefs” at an event debating the conflict between LGBT equality and freedom of speech."

Naturally, GLBTI people having equality is dangerous, especially if it is your religious beliefs to oppress them. Of course, we all know religious beliefs that destroy the lives of innocent people we just happen to dislike are far more important than the human rights of those people. That is, we all know religion needs to pin something on somebody and it might as well be those darn GLBTI folks, who are always objecting to being stepped on and made scapegoats of, don't they know their place? I mean, they should just accept that OUR God hates them and get on with life and quit wriggling when we put them on the hook.

arvan's picture

"Two Spirits" World Premier, Nov. 21

Two Spirits, the documentary directed by Lydia Nibley and produced by Say Yes Quickly Productions, will have its world premiere on Saturday, November 21 at the Starz Denver Film Festival.

The film will screen at 12:30 p.m. in the 520-seat King Center Concert Hall on the University of Colorado at Denver’s downtown Auraria campus. The film will be followed by a panel discussion and reception, and the event will be hosted by the Matthew Shepard Foundation.

Fred Martinez was nádleehí—someone who possesses a balance of masculine and feminine traits—a special gift according to his traditional Navajo culture. But his determination to express his truest identity tragically cost him his life.  At age sixteen, he was one of the youngest hate-crime victims in modern history when he was murdered in Cortez, Colorado.

arvan's picture

The Face of Hatred - A Hate Crime Survivor

 This is a powerful, moving video from a man - Michael, who was recently attacked and brutalized because he is gay.  The police arrested him rather than seek the attackers.  They arrested the man lying on the ground in his own blood. 

[From Michael]

Something I left out of this video, after I called the Saint Petersburg Police Dept here in Florida, they found my broken and battered body on the ground. I explained that I was attacked, instead of wanting to help me they asked if i had been drinking, I then pointed to where i last remembered the men running away, the cops were not interested.

I then got angry and said "why are you not going after them? The cop did not answer me, I then told him I have a serious blood disease, I am beaten and you might as well finish me off if you're not here to help me, and said some more sarcastic angry things because I was in shock and excruciating pain.

I was then handcuffed and was told that I was being "baker-acted" because I am a threat to others and to myself.

This is my way of trying to be strong after being beaten.  It's important that people see what hatred upon another for no other reason than for being born the way I am, to bring about change. I do not hate my attackers, I forgive them and pray they will lose the hatred in their hearts.

Be well, Michael

The people in St. Petersburg, FL have homophobic, lazy cops!  Please call St. Petersburg Chief of Police, Charles " Chuck" Harmon at (727) 893-7588 to demand the apprehension of the men that beat Michael and to institute policy changes in his donut-eaters.

kbster's picture

Starting off on the Wrong Foot

Nicholas Kristof of the New York Times has been a champion of women and girls by bringing issues that affect them to the forefront; he has devoted much of his column space to everything from rape as a weapon of war/conflict to acid attacks to microfinance and women’s economic development. He and his wife, Sheryl WuDunn, have embarked on a great journey to bring these issues even more attention by conducting research and writing Half the Sky. I had heard about this book long ago and waited months for its release. I started reading it the other night, excited about the prospect that crimes committed against women would become something that more people would hear, read, and talk about. Perhaps more people would even do something in support of the world’s population of women and girls, because I believe in the purpose of Kristof and WuDunn’s book and what their goals seem to be.

That said, I started reading the introduction, and on page xv, I came across this quote:

“In the wealthy countries of the West, discrimination is usually a matter of unequal pay or underfunded sports teams or unwanted touching from a boss. In contrast, in much of the world discrimination is lethal.” (Kristof & WuDunn, 2009)

I am so dismayed by this quote that I don’t even know where to begin. I understand the sentiment, but those two sentences are a gross simplification of issues affecting women in the West. Sure, unequal pay and the like are not “lethal” manifestations of gender discrimination, but they’re still discriminatory practices that are systemic indicators of a social order in the West and across the globe. Even beyond that, there are plenty of women and girls in the United States and the West in general who die at the hands of gender discrimination. Hate crimes against females are not limited to developing countries and rural areas — they’re a reality everywhere.

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