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Damian Furtch’s Attacker Anthony Bray Confesses, But Claims Being Gay Means He Can’t Be A Gay Basher

A one Anthony Bray, 21, has been arrested for the early morning gay bashing of Damian Furtch last weekend outside a West Village McDonald’s in Manhattan. But while Bray has admitted to the brutal assault (video here), he insists it wasn’t a gay bashing. Because he’s gay too.

Can a gay man gay bash another gay man? If there’s enough self-hatred, sure. But it’ll be up to prosecutors to show that Furtch was targeted specifically because of his sexuality; the sexuality of the attacker, then, should be irrelevant, since hate crimes focus only about the actual or perceived sexuality of the victim.

Bray, who is homeless, was picked up in Brooklyn after an anonymous tip fingered him in the attack, and his family helped arrange his surrender. Thus far he’s been charged only with charged with misdemeanor assault, but there’s the possibility of attaching hate crime charges. (Except, says a “police source,” it’s possible “it may come down to just two guys having a fistfight.”)

Meanwhile, where is the second man who is seen on camera joining Bray in the attack? And will he also claim his sexuality precludes him from committing hate crimes against gays? Police say they’re searching for him.

So what set off the attack? Bray, whose rap sheet includes marijuana, graffiti and robbery busts, says Furtch “disrespected” him inside the McDonald’s. As Furtch has told it, he and a friend were the ones targeted by a group of men, and he left the restaurant to ease the tension. That’s when he was pummeled and called a “fucking faggot.”

Those words alone, one would think, would be enough to show Bray’s animus was motivated by perceived sexuality. But if Bray gets a skilled defense attorney, the argument will certainly be made that one “fucking faggot” cannot commit a hate crime against another.

By:           Ryan Tedder
On:           Apr 2, 2011
Tagged: , , , , ,

  • 87 Comments
    • Rafi D'Angelo
      Rafi D'Angelo

      Depending on what other details surrounding the attack come forth, I might be inclined to side with the defense attorney as well. “fucking faggot” doesn’t necessarily mean “hate crime” especially when coming from another gay man.

      Take the punch out of the situation, and it’s a different picture. Let’s say two gay men get into an argument in a bar and one throws a drink and says “fucking faggot.” But if you replace him with a straight man who says “fucking faggot” the whole timbre of the confrontation changes.

      So we don’t know the motivation behind the attack. All we see in the video is Mr Furtch and the attacker standing face to face, and then the attacker punches.

      This isn’t to say that a gay man is incapable of a hate crime–it happens all the time. But it does add an extra level of doubt to the situation.

      Apr 2, 2011 at 12:57 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon
      Shannon

      No…I see what happened!! THIS WAS ONE OF THOSE TYPICAL BITCHY….NELLY…ALWAYS SOMETHING SMART ASSED QUEENS WE ALL ENCOUNTER…WHO THANKFULLY…GOT HIS ASS KICKED! I HAVE TO KICK SOME OF THESE QUEENS ASSES TO…NOT EVERYONE THINKS YOUR BITCHY ASSES COMMENTS ARE CUTE! YOU —–DO—–RUN ACROSS SOME PEOPLE LIKE ME…WHO WILL KICK YOUR ASSES…

      Apr 2, 2011 at 1:09 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Kev C
      Kev C

      I’m having a hard time believing the drug-addled bum guy. In my experience, this has all the markings of a bias assault and should be persued as such until evidence says different.

      Apr 2, 2011 at 1:21 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • The sane Francis
      The sane Francis

      Bray is a convict, drug addict and street thug. So, obviously, everything he says should be taken with a grain of salt. People like this are usually very slick in attempting to get out of crimes they commit. I wouldn’t believe anything he says until he proves it. And even then, self-loathing/poorly adjusted gays certainly are capable of gay bashing.

      Apr 2, 2011 at 1:31 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Nell
      Nell

      I thought the attackers were hispanic. Bray doesn’t sound like it.

      Apr 2, 2011 at 1:31 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Hellarious
      Hellarious

      @nell: what’s your point? Why’s it matter if he’s hispanic or not?

      Apr 2, 2011 at 2:05 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Kathlene
      Kathlene

      wtf @ Shannon

      Apr 2, 2011 at 3:38 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ewe
      ewe

      No dice motherfuckuh. Call me a faggot, put your hands on me calling me a faggot and you have raised the level of hate. Words are not bashing. Striking someone physically is bashing. I would like to remind this so called gay man what happened to the lesbian women in the village that decided to pummel a man as a group. Their defense fizzled.

      Apr 2, 2011 at 4:00 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ewe
      ewe

      And more importantly as a gay man i would invite anyone who is gay and thinking somehow this is a legitimate rationale to meet me where i can smack the livin shit out of you and say it’s all a misunderstanding since i am gay too.

      Apr 2, 2011 at 4:03 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ewe
      ewe

      @Shannon: Shannon: i will run across you but it will be observing you as a defendant and others testifying against you. Bitch, go bitch yourself Bitchy. Put your hands on someone else and you will be charged with a crime.

      Apr 2, 2011 at 4:07 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Rafi D'Angelo
      Rafi D'Angelo [Different person #1 using similar name]

      @EWE I think you’re commenting under the premise that people are saying his attack is somehow justified if both of them are gay and that’s not the case. No one has the right to put their hands on you, but just because you hit someone who is gay and say “faggot” doesn’t mean it’s a hate crime. He can be guilty of assault without being guilty of a hate crime. Every black man who gets into a fight with another black man and says “nigger” isn’t guilty of a hate crime.

      If Bray hit Furtch because Furtch’s gayness offended him, that’s a hate crime. If Bray hit Furtch because of some other reason we don’t know about yet (because it’s not like you can tell from the video) and said “faggot” after the fact, that’s not a hate crime.

      Apr 2, 2011 at 4:11 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • TheRealAdam
      TheRealAdam

      I tend to agree with Francis. It seems majorly convenient that Bray would use “I’m gay, too” as a defense to avoid even more punishment. He probably knows the justice system and is trying to shirk the criminal responsibility associated with hate crimes.

      And, furthermore, how often have we heard of gay-on-gay assault of this magnitude and of this randomness? Not very often. That makes his “gay, too” defense all the more shaky.

      Apr 2, 2011 at 4:35 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Larry
      Larry

      If this guy is gay it wasn’t a hate crime.Just 2 fags fighting.

      Apr 2, 2011 at 5:19 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • B
      B

      No. 12 · TheRealAdam wrote, “I tend to agree with Francis. It seems majorly convenient that Bray would use “I’m gay, too” as a defense to avoid even more punishment. He probably knows the justice system and is trying to shirk the criminal responsibility associated with hate crimes.”

      If Bray’s assault was not due to hatred of gays, regardless of what he said, then it is not a hate crime, just an assault at a level that warrants a lot of jail time. The prosecutor will use Bray’s use of the word “faggot” as evidence that the assault was a hate crime. Bray’s claim to be gay is an attempt to counter the prosecutor’s argument.

      If Bray is in fact gay, then the prosecutor could argue that he was brought up to hate gays, hates himself, and transferred that self-hatred into an attack on the victim, so the assault was in fact a hate crime. The best defense Bray can offer to counter that argument would be to trot out a number of gay friends who can testify that Bray’s “gayness” is not limited to sex behind the dumpster while never allowing himself to be seen in public walking down the street holding another guy’s hand. If he doesn’t have any such friends, Bray just might find a lot of skepticism on the part of the jury.

      Regardless of his faults, it appears that Bray is not so homophobic as to think that claiming to be gay is worse than an extra N months in prison. For some individuals, that would represent progress.

      Apr 2, 2011 at 5:31 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Montezu
      Montezu

      Bray might be telling the truth. Or maybe he’s a liar. Or maybe Furtch is the liar and claimed it was a gaybashing for a step into fame. We shouldn’t guess either way until more comes out.

      Apr 2, 2011 at 7:17 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • merkin
      merkin

      this is whats impossible about hate-crime laws. How can you determine motivation so perfectly? Isn’t all violence essentially born of hate? And do we prosecute black people for hate-crimes against whites? Or violence against the elderly, infirm, fat, ugly…What is and isnt on the list? Two gays getting into a physical fight and cursing at each other?

      That’s why Im against specific hate-crime laws. You can factor it in during sentencing or parole, but its an insult to the families of other victims to say our pain and suffering is more worth punishing.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 12:24 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ewe
      ewe

      @Rafi D’Angelo: Have you ever heard of the closet? Are you aware the lengths self hating gay people go to deny who they are especially in the presence of others? It is quite possible for gay people to commit a hate crime against another gay person and you example of race could be the same. Perhaps some biracial person does not care to identify with half of who they are and attack the race they themselves deny. It is called blending and it is very real.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 12:40 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Rafi D'Angelo
      Rafi D'Angelo [Different person #1 using similar name]

      @EWE: Did you read my original comment? I already acknowledged the fact that gay-on-gay hate crimes do exist. I’m merely pointing out that just because someone uses inflammatory language doesn’t mean there was a hate bias behind the attack. We don’t have enough information to form an opinion either way so I don’t understand why people are so adamantly taking sides.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 12:57 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Ed
      Ed

      This is why hate crime legislation is nonsense. He attacked someone viciously who cares what his motivation is? If he beat him because he angered him does that ease the pain of his swelling?

      Apr 3, 2011 at 1:19 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ewe
      ewe

      @Rafi D’Angelo: Because behind the words was a physical assault with another person. LOOK AT THE PHOTO.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 1:24 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ewe
      ewe

      @Ed: Hate crime legislation is not nonsense because hate crimes in and of themselves would not occur if not for that specific motivation.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 1:26 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ewe
      ewe

      Why are so many people assuming that just because the attacker says he is gay that that must open the door for the victim to be perceived as some caddy bitch who asked to get his face smashed in?

      Apr 3, 2011 at 1:29 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Rafi D'Angelo
      Rafi D'Angelo [Different person #1 using similar name]

      @ewe You’re not picking up what I’m putting down. I’ll try it one more time: Just because you call someone a faggot when you hit them does not automatically mean you hit them BECAUSE they’re a faggot. We don’t know if that’s the reason he hit him or not. All we know is that he got assaulted and Bray is guilty of assault. We don’t know his motivation to ascertain if it was a hate crime.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 1:54 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Rafi D'Angelo
      Rafi D'Angelo [Different person #1 using similar name]

      @ewe: And who are these “so many people” you’re referring to? Only one person made any sort of callous remark about him deserving to get hit for being a queen.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 1:57 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • JeremyBlake
      JeremyBlake

      I’ve gotten the impression there was an attempted firtation and Furtch gave them an uppity attitude. But I’m NOT saying that’s absolutely the case. I’m smart enough to wait for more info. (And I’ve heard Black guys fighting on the subway saying stuff like, “Your mouth will get you killed nigga!” Does that mean it’s a hate crime if one physically assaults the other?)

      Apr 3, 2011 at 2:04 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • JeremyBlake
      JeremyBlake

      And I agree with Rafi. He’s one of the smart ones here, saying “wait and see.”

      Apr 3, 2011 at 2:10 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ewe
      ewe

      @Rafi D’Angelo: the underlying thought here is that if a gay person calls someone a faggot and punches your face in that somehow that is different than if a straight person calls someone a faggot and punches your face in. Not necessarily. of course i agree with you that we do not know all the details.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 2:17 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Kev C
      Kev C

      @merkin: Most of your questions can be answered by reading the actual bills. I hate people who hate hate crimes laws. Here’s what we know: LGBTs are a minority who are victimized more often, and whose attackers are prosectued less often. And what do you propose to do about it? Argue for lesser sentencing of violent criminals? GTFO!

      Apr 3, 2011 at 2:28 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • JeremyBlake
      JeremyBlake

      Ewe : The two ARE sort of different though, you must admit. I’d hate to think I’d be up for a hate crime if in the middle of a fight with one of “my own kind” I called him a “stupid kraut” because I thought he had been acting like a goose-stepping bossy Becks-drinker all night.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 3:00 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • GeriHew
      GeriHew

      Let’s Get Real. Most violent queer bashers are deeply insecure about their own sexuality.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 7:38 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • hotmess
      hotmess

      @Rafi D’Angelo: I so agree with you. What if furtch was the one who started and and anthony finished it with the 2 punches to the face? By the look of the video you can see that furtch was in the boys face then anthony punches 2 times then walks away. Did anyone do research to see exactly who Damiean Furtch really is, and what is is driving force to publicly come forth so fast ? I did! i googled his name and from the looks of it he wants the attention to get noticed. I find it strange that he is on alot of talent search websites and looking for acing work….. So i just think that before the media jumps out the window they really need to find out about furtch before they continue with this nonsense crime. furtch was mad and upset that his face was beat in…… at least that is what is sounds like from his facebook page.,

      Apr 3, 2011 at 7:46 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Kev C
      Kev C

      “it may come down to just two guys having a fistfight.” said a police source.

      Except the victim wasn’t fighting anyone. This is why we need gay police officers and detectives. Because dumb cops who have wild exculpatory theories based on no evidence making excuses for criminals. I wouldn’t be surprised if the police or the DA told Bray to claim to be gay.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 9:02 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • justiceontherocks
      justiceontherocks

      @Ed: If I read something like this again I may hurl onto my laptop. Acts are made criminal not just because of their impact on the victim, but primarily because of their impact on society. When you want to stop violent behavior against unpopular groups you punish it more. What in the blue hell is wrong or unfair about that?

      @hotmess: you find it strange that a young gay man working at a restaurant in NYC goes on “talent search” websites looking for work? Have you ever been to NY?

      The several-time-loser perp copped to the assault. Now the argument is what he’ll plead to. His “gay” defense is a ploy to get the sentence reduced.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 9:50 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Kev C
      Kev C

      @justiceontherocks: Thanks for talking some sense to these fools.

      Welcome to NYC, where crime victims are revictimized by society and the system. If you want police satisfaction in NYC, pick up the phone, dial 911 and jerk-off into the mouthpiece.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 10:36 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • TheRealAdam
      TheRealAdam

      @Kev C: That may very well be one of the most random comments I’ve ever read here.

      @B: It’s not progress if it’s an underhanded attempt to reduce his criminal sentence. It doesn’t matter if it’s only a few months or a few days, it still seems like an opportune play.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 11:12 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Kev C
      Kev C

      @TheRealAdam: You probably don’t live in NYC. Am I right?

      Apr 3, 2011 at 11:29 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ewe
      ewe

      @JeremyBlake: lol. Yes there is a difference. Did you call him a stupid kraut, then punch his face purple and leave him in the road stumbling to a hospital?

      Apr 3, 2011 at 11:35 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Ed
      Ed

      Also another thing not being discussed here is the differences between the black & white gay communities. Many Black men who sleep with men don’t see themselves as the stereotypical gay guy and look down at more flamboyant gay men. You see this alot on Adam4Adam where posting after posting from Black men implores “No Fems”.

      If the assailant is in fact gay that may explain the use of the word “f****t”.

      I just find all of this nonsensical. What should matter is the assault not what he uttered while wailing on the guy or his sexuality.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 11:45 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • TheRealAdam
      TheRealAdam

      @Kev C: Yes, you are right. I live in L.A.

      I don’t think I’d ever head to NYC to live. Never interested me…and certainly not with the rampant homophobic thuggery on its streets. Absolutely not. Every week I am reading of some violent hate crime against gays there.

      But I tried to understand your comment by itself and it still was not clear, unless you are suggesting that the NYC police are only good for phone sex?

      Apr 3, 2011 at 11:47 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • TheRealAdam
      TheRealAdam

      @Ed: Let’s not inject racial attitudes into this, especially since you’ll find “no fems” comments from plenty of white and Latino men, as well. Machismo affects all races and cultures.

      And you are absolutely wrong to diminish the significance of a potential hate crime, and wrong to be rallying against the concept of it. @justiceontherocks: explained it perfectly to you, if succinctly, so I am not going to repeat what should be obvious.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 11:52 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Kev C
      Kev C

      @TheRealAdam: If you visit NYC, remember my advice. If you’re gay and get bashed in NYC, you won’t recieve justice or satisfaction from the system.

      Here’s what I think will happen: Anthony Bray will be charged with third-degree misdemeanor assault. If convicted, his sentence will range from 15 days to one year in jail, and most cases rarely get a year.

      So without a hate crimes charge, as little as 15 days for gay bashing in NYC.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 11:54 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • justiceontherocks
      justiceontherocks

      @Kev C: He may get more for being a multiple offender, but your basic point is spot on. The system just wants to process him as quickly as possible and go on to the next one.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 12:59 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Mike in Asheville
      Mike in Asheville

      The assailant has admitted that he was one of the assailants. Period. That means he is admitting and confessing his guilt in the assault.

      Per whether the assault is also a hate crime, being an admitted gay man, who called the victim, admittedly, “a fucking faggot” clearly makes the assailant much worse than simply a hate monger: Bray is a Kapo; and deserves every bit the additional penalty for the hate crime.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 2:14 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ewe
      ewe

      Even if this began as a flirtatious moment gone bad we can still label it a love hate crime. Love to hate can take seconds. It still is a hate crime because it appears it was gay related and fueled by the appearance of homosexuality. They also had never met prior i think so it cannot be considered an ugly spat between two gay men.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 2:51 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ewe
      ewe

      i take some of that back. Misguided love can turn to hate.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 2:52 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • JB
      JB

      Everytime the culprit is a black male you gay guys try to scream that it’s a homophobic hate crime.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 5:06 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Whatevs2
      Whatevs2

      With those hammy dramatic pics Damian Furtch has been posing for with GLAAD, he probably hoped the suspect would never be caught so everyone would forever see him as a hate crime victim. Now the guy was caught and everything isn’t so cut and dry.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 5:21 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Kev C
      Kev C

      @Whatevs2: If Anthony Bray is lying about being gay, would you support the hate crimes charge?

      Hey, criminals lie. I’ve heard this excuse before. Every time someone used the “I’m gay too” alibi, they were lying. I’ve had people approach me to lie in court for gay bashers pretending to be gay. Criminals lie.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 5:36 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Whatevs2
      Whatevs2

      KevC : Probably, then, I’d support the hate crime charges. I’ll admit I don’t know for sure if he’s lying or not. i want to know if his McDonald’s companion is gay, or supposedly gay, too.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 5:40 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Whatevs2
      Whatevs2

      This is neither here nor there, but why didn’t Furtch fight back? He looks bigger than his attackers in the video. was it a case of the scrappy tough NYC street homo against the passive california outoftowner? (but, yes, KevC, I know…he might be lying about being gay..)

      Apr 3, 2011 at 5:45 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Rafi D'Angelo
      Rafi D'Angelo [Different person #1 using similar name]

      @Whatevs2: He’s been described as a “gentle giant” by his employer. Which goes to show you size has nothing to do with keeping yourself safe on the streets. Even the guys who go to the gym everyday and built this false sense of security around themselves. Unless you’ve been in an ACTUAL fight as an adult, you really have no idea what to do with yourself.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 5:48 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • TheRealAdam
      TheRealAdam

      @Kev C: Interesting…and I always read that NYC police do a stellar, exemplary job when it comes to law and criminal justice.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 5:49 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Kev C
      Kev C

      @Whatevs2: Furtch left the McDonald’s because he wanted to avoid confrontation. He was trying to avoid fighting. I’m telling you, this was a gay bashing.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 5:50 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Rafi D'Angelo
      Rafi D'Angelo [Different person #1 using similar name]

      @Kev C: That’s what he says, but when you look at the tape he is CLEARLY standing right up in front of the guy who punches him. When *I’m* trying to avoid fighting someone who’s goading me with foul language, the last thing I do is walk up to them and start talking…I keep walking away. We’re just taking his word for it because he’s the one with the black eye. If I were on the jury, I’d need some more witness statements or something.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 5:52 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Whatevs2
      Whatevs2

      Rafi : it shows how much witness statements are important in any trial. I want to know what happened between the parties involved in the McDonald’s, from witnesses, and then what was being said outside, to reasonably conclude anything.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 6:00 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • jason
      jason

      A gay person can still be capable of committing hate crimes. As I’ve said to many within the community, a gay person can be just as homophobic or racist or generally bigoted as anybody else. Being gay doesn’t make you immune to the ugliest characteristics of humankind.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 6:07 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Whatevs2
      Whatevs2

      Gays can be heterophobic, too. But every case is individual. this case is assault, obviously, but does it fall into a hate crime category? need more info.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 6:09 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Kev C
      Kev C

      Well if Anthony Bray is gay, I hope the boys at Riker’s show him some love.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 6:50 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Whatevs2
      Whatevs2

      Maybe Bray is more the type who’s a top in prison, though.

      Apr 3, 2011 at 7:02 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • A Greed Gay Red
      A Greed Gay Red

      Can a gay person commit an anti-gay hate crime? Absolutely.

      Oppression is not a personal attitude or a personal behavior. Oppression is systemic and it is functional, that is, it is a fundamental aspect of the way society has been organized and it serves to perpetuate that form of organization. Oppression not is defined by the identity of the oppressor. It is defined by its effect on the target: does it perpetuate and reinforce the system of oppression?

      Homophobia serves the interests of this society – a capitalist society – by reinforcing heteronormativity’s influence on society’s reproduction, although capitalism has begun to counter the challenge posed by the LGBT movement by redirecting away from a liberation orientation and to a reformist orientation and now towards a fuller integration into neoliberalism itself by granting reforms which serves the needs of militarism and the increased importance of the family as education, health care, and social services are eviscerated due to the ongoing economic crisis. When Republicans hold a state hostage to the superstitions of a small minority or when they paint queers’ legitimate demands for full democratic rights as attacks on the rights of others, that’s homophobic. When Barney Frank holds a press conference to denounce Gavin Newsom’s issuing of marriage licenses to same-sex couples in SF, that’s homophobic. When gay rights organizations donate money to anti-gay candidates at the request of the Democratic Party, that’s homophobic.

      Given the details we have before us, I don’t think we can call this a hate crime. We should be pissed, but let’s not be hysterical and focus on the individual because he’s easier to conquer than the bigger fish. I think this is actually a normal, if dysfunctional, response to the horrors of living in this society. Homophobia and all the rest of the shit this society piles on us — war, low wages, no health care, no access to education, racism, sexism, very little actual democracy in this alledgedly “democratic” society — actually harms us, whether we are LGBT or not. And it doesn’t teach us how to overcome this shit it piles on us. We aren’t taught what homophobia is, never mind how to get rid of it. In this context, it shouldn’t be surprising that individuals may not respond to their stresses in a healthy or productive way. There is a HUGE difference between, say, a president who acts in a homophobic way and a homeless kid who acts in a homophobic way. I do find it ironic and offensive how quick we are to label and suggest punishment when the perpetrator is a working class schmuck like us and so slow to apply the label and suggest punishment when their one of the most powerful people in our society.

      These are discussions that movements need to have to stay healthy: what is oppression, where does it come from, how do we end it.

      Apr 4, 2011 at 2:11 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Kenneth
      Kenneth

      White gay men discriminate against black gay men all the time. The mostly white gay community is racist. White gay men are not minorities. They are still a part of the majority 197 million white population in the United States.

      Apr 4, 2011 at 2:38 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • JumpingAround
      JumpingAround

      Kenneth, that might or might not be true. But, either way, in this particular case, let’s not forget, it’s a black on black crime. The big question is whether it’s a homophobic attack or just a fight between two gay guys.

      Apr 4, 2011 at 2:43 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • JumpingAround
      JumpingAround

      No. 59 , Red, I don’t disagree that there’s a lot of unfairness in this society and most societies. But, at the same time, how do we know Anthony Bray isn’t in his homeless angry street-type situation because of his own repeated bad behavior? he seems to be quick to punch people. I don’t know him, just saying..

      Apr 4, 2011 at 2:48 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Sam
      Sam

      Of course gay men can “bash” other gay men.

      Kenneth I agree with you that white gay men discriminate against black bisexual and gay men all the time.

      I’ve met lots of white men who claimed that they’re into black men but then they talk about how much they want “big black cock” as if all black men are hung.

      I’ve seen black men get completely ignored by white men in bars and clubs and flat out told that they didn’t belong there or worse.

      Apr 4, 2011 at 2:54 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • B
      B

      In No. 34 · TheRealAdam wrote “@B: It’s not progress if it’s an underhanded attempt to reduce his criminal sentence. It doesn’t matter if it’s only a few months or a few days, it still seems like an opportune play.”

      Adam, you misread it. What I had said was “Regardless of his faults, it appears that Bray is not so homophobic as to think that claiming to be gay is worse than an extra N months in prison. For some individuals, that would represent progress.”

      The last sentence was sarcasm directed at homophobes in general.

      Apr 4, 2011 at 3:00 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • JumpingAround
      JumpingAround

      So if two gay guys got into a fight (not saying that that’s necessarily the case in the Furtch incident) and one mutters “faggot” then he can be up on hate crime charges? Same for a black guy who calls another one “nigga” in a fight? This is why Hate Crimes trouble me. I’m not against them entirely, but let’s not get too Thought Police 1984/Brave New World about it.

      Apr 4, 2011 at 3:01 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Kev C
      Kev C

      @JumpingAround: Either way, Damian was attacked because he was a femme. Bray isn’t. And we know some macho gays -hate- femmes.

      Apr 4, 2011 at 4:04 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • JumpingAround
      JumpingAround

      Kev C , SOME macho gays do hate femmes. But furtch might also have been a rude snot to him which might be the motive. (Don’t jump on me. I’m not saying that’s what happened, just debating the whole thing..)

      Apr 4, 2011 at 4:29 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Kev C
      Kev C

      @JumpingAround: Until Bray throw a punch, no crime was committed. Some people may be snotty after working 8 or 9 hours to find some bum dissing them about wearing pink shoes and neon clothes.

      Apr 4, 2011 at 5:18 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Kev C
      Kev C

      @JumpingAround: Until Brey threw the first punch, no crime was committed. Some people may be rude after working 8 hours to find some bums harrassing them about their gay looking clothes.

      Apr 4, 2011 at 5:21 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • JumpingAround
      JumpingAround

      Kev C. : I agree that Bray is the criminal here, as he threw the first punch. But, depending on Bray’s sexuality and whatever happened in the McDonald’s, it might not be a hate crime.

      Apr 4, 2011 at 7:18 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ron
      ron

      I think we’ve all been in situations where big-mouth queens cross the line in their bitchy comments. Is it a gay bashing to teach them some manners…I think not.

      Apr 4, 2011 at 8:15 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Robert in NYC
      Robert in NYC

      This sounds like a “panic defense” excuse similar to the one used by the killers of Matthew Shepherd, thinking it diminishes the severity of the crime. I’m suspicious of Bray’s excuse but you can bet his legal team will use it.

      Apr 4, 2011 at 10:14 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • TheRealAdam
      TheRealAdam

      @Kenneth:
      @Sam:

      Sweet heavens, can’t you blacks go a few moments without injecting race into this? This has nothing to do with white gay men discriminating against black gays. Stop bringing your own hang-ups into this discussion.

      @B: I detected some sarcasm, there, but didn’t want to jump to any conclusions.

      Apr 4, 2011 at 12:39 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • JAD
      JAD

      Actually, if you look up Damian Furtch on YouTube and see him doing that dance on the plane, he DOES look like an obnoxious character.

      Apr 4, 2011 at 12:53 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • JAD
      JAD

      RobertInNYC – How is that in any way like a “panic defense” (if it’s true)? He claims Furtch disrespected him. I see anger and lack of control, not panic.

      Apr 4, 2011 at 12:56 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • JusticeontheRocks
      JusticeontheRocks

      @ron: Did you put on your lipstick before or after you typed that moronic comment?

      Apr 4, 2011 at 1:02 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ewe
      ewe

      @JB: Take a look in the mirror with that blanket stereotype you just tried to pass off as fact.

      Apr 4, 2011 at 1:37 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • B
      B

      No. 71 · Robert in NYC wrote, “This sounds like a ‘panic defense’ excuse similar to the one used by the killers of Matthew Shepherd, thinking it diminishes the severity of the crime. I’m suspicious of Bray’s excuse but you can bet his legal team will use it.”

      … it is really not a “panic defense” – he’s simply saying that he does not deserve a hate-crime enhancement to the sentence he deserves for what he did.

      A hate crime enhancement is there for two reasons. First, a hate crime does not just target a specific victim but a whole class of people because they will feel less safe than their neighbors when just walking down the street. Second, in most cases hate crimes are harder to solve than other crimes because the victim is selected at random with no obvious connection between the victim and his/her assailant and no evidence such as stolen property that might show the perpetrator’s guilt. If the crime is harder to solve, a longer sentence is justified as the perpetrator can carry out more crimes before being caught.

      Apr 4, 2011 at 8:10 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Priscilla Queen of the Jungle
      Priscilla Queen of the Jungle

      saw that youtube of damian. he looks yummy! get well soon, damian.

      Apr 6, 2011 at 11:30 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • BeRealHere
      BeRealHere

      http://www.flickr.com/photos/vitofun/5595965292/ Damian Furtch is fine, and using this to promote himself. What a jerk.

      Apr 6, 2011 at 3:39 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Zonk
      Zonk

      Furtch MUST be an ass.

      Apr 6, 2011 at 4:44 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Zonk
      Zonk

      Because those pics can only work against him in court. He’s having a fun time with it.

      Apr 6, 2011 at 4:45 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ARYAN SKINHEAD
      ARYAN SKINHEAD

      This IS a hate crime and the criminal knows how to play the game to avoid a felony charge. The victim was attacked because of his sexual orientation so I hope the cops don’t dismiss this crime simply because the gay basher did not look like a skinhead Nazi.

      I do not believe the assaulter is gay but if he is, it does not surprise me that closetcases hanging around where gays are commit all these beatings and brutal assaults gay men endure everywhere.

      The queers need to stick up for the victim and demand the assaulter be prosecuted with a hate crime charge. People did not fight for hate crimes laws only to have them applied exclusively to blond ‘Nazi’ gay bashers but to all gay bashers even the ones who conveiniently claim they are gay to avoid prosecution.

      Apr 7, 2011 at 9:29 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ARYAN SKINHEAD
      ARYAN SKINHEAD

      The random beatings, bashings and stabbings by gay bashers OR closetcases creates fear in the gay community so this creep needs to face felony hate crimes charges whether he is gay or not. His actions and derision of homosexuals would have caused waves of fear in the gay community if he was not caught.

      Gays disgust me in that they only want a “Nazi” blond man prosecuted for hate crimes charges but not anyone else.

      Even if he is gay he needs to be prosecuted so queers who feel disgust for other queers don’t think they can bash gay men hoping society will not care.

      Closetcases going out bashing gay men and getting away with it cause as much fear if not more in the queer community as any Nazi could. No tolerance for hate no matter where is comes from!

      Apr 7, 2011 at 9:43 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Zonk
      Zonk

      Aryan Skinhead : You don’t know, though, that the attacker is really gay, though. There ARE some violent thuggy homos like that. Maybe Furtch gave him a snotty attitude. But best to wait for more witnesses.

      Apr 7, 2011 at 10:13 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Zonk
      Zonk

      Excuse me, I meant “you don’t know that the attacker really isn’t gay”. Otherwise, yes, of course Hate Crimes, if applied at all, should be equally applied always all across the board.

      Apr 7, 2011 at 10:15 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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