It is interesting to talk about hate crimes, but it is important to highlight that the Supreme Court Rulings on gay marriage this year have not led to immediate acceptance of people with different sexual orientations. Even though Republicans are slowly coming around to support gay rights, thanks to the efforts of advocacy for marriage equality from openly gay conservatives like Ken Mehlman of KKR, there have been several incidences of violence against gays over the summer.
In Seattle, a man in Capitol Hill was beaten by three men and two women who were calling him derogatory names. On August 5th, Jason Jacobs was walking home in a neighborhood that is considered one of the most gay-friendly places in the country when he was attacked for his sexuality. He had a broken nose and was rushed to the emergency room. Yet another victim of LGBT hate crimes.
This week in Chelsea, New York, a couple was walking out of the Bow Tie Chelsea Cinema on Tuesday. Two men started taunting the couple and then attacked them. Four other people joined in the beating. The New York City Anti Violence Project has reported a steady increase in LGBT hate crimes in the last three years. This is the second hate crime in New York this month and several more have occurred over the summer.
There have also been hate crimes reported against gay men and couples in particular in New Orleans, San Mateo, and several in the state of Ohio. As awareness and acceptance rises, it seems that social acceptance will not come without a cost. We must be vigilant and remain safe at all costs.
Do we want to live in a culture that is filled with fear and hate? Certainly not–so we must continue to battle that hatred every day, standing up for what is right and doing our very best to make sure that “safe spaces” really are safe.