Sunday, June 26, 2016

A Hate Crime

There is a lot of debate over hate crime laws; some say that an assault is just an assault whatever the motive and others including me think that an assault that targets people because of a certain characteristic or group affiliation is a hate crime.
Transgender Activist Beaten Following Benefit For Orlando Victims
“This is what transphobia looks like.”
Huffington Post
By Michael McLaughlin
June 24, 2016

Seattle police and the FBI are searching for the perpetrator who assaulted a transgender activist after a benefit concert for victims of the mass shooting in Orlando, Florida.

The attacker allegedly said “Happy Pride” before uttering offensive language as he punched and strangled the victim, who lost consciousness, on Wednesday night in the Capitol Hill neighborhood.
[…]
Volz is a social worker and former county government employee who helped create the Kings County Transgender Resource Guide, according to The Seattle Times.

Volz was walking alone around 11:30 p.m. when the attack happened. The suspect is a white man in his 20s, with brown hair and a partial beard, according to the Seattle Police Department. He wore an orange or copper-colored sweatshirt, blue jeans and sandals, police said.

“I’m disgusted by this hateful attack,” said Seattle Police Chief Kathleen O’Toole. “I want to assure the victim and the community that the SPD will leverage every resource to identify the suspect and bring him to justice.”
The Seattle Times reported that,
A local activist said people in the trans community are shocked and fearful.

“Our community continues to face violence every day … I think people are very scared,” said Danni Askini, executive director of the Gender Justice League.
And this is what makes this a hate crime, “Our community continues to face violence every day … I think people are very scared” the attack not only targeted the individual but also the community.

When I was walking back to my car one night in Hartford I was worried, it was after 11:30 at night, there were people hanging out outside bars and the streets were mostly deserted and it made me nervous to be out there. I was lucky, when I stepped out of the place where the event and I stood in front of the door to the event was being held I didn’t like the looks of the area, however a group of lesbians was also came out of the event and was walking back to their car. I asked them if I could join them and they said yes, one of them put her arm around mine and asked me where my car was parked. The five of us with me arm in arm with this unknown lesbian walked to me to my car. Then she hugged me and asked me if I was alright.

For many women this is second nature, check your surroundings first, but for us trans women we don’t have that instinct and on top of that because we are trans we are the prime target for a hate crime.

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