Why London’s Rally Against Gay Violence Is Truly Extraordinary

What happened in London on Friday night was, in a word, remarkable. Thousands gathered in a candlelight vigil to raise awareness about the string of violence there in recent weeks, the most gruesome of which left Ian Baynham dead.

That so many folks would come out to rally for members of our community is momentous by itself. But remember this: It’s easy to forget, if you’re reading this website from the U.S. or Britain, that an event like this is even possible.

When a gay man is murdered in Iraq, or a lesbian woman raped in South Africa, or a transgender fella is assaulted in Uganda, there simply are not these masses of human beings who are free to stand up, have their voices heard, and demand action.

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  • terrwill

    The bestest part of this is the hard core islamic subhuman scumbags who have a tremendous presence in England must all have their turbans and burkas twisted tighter than a drum over this!!!!

  • Emily

    Terrwill, while I agree it sends a clear message to islamic fundamentalists in Britain that anti-gay violence is unacceptable, I wouldn’t call them subhuman. Remember, that’s what many of them think about us. We need to be above that. Also keep in mind that the perpetrators in this case were not actually islamic fundamentalists.

  • tavdy79

    Emily, while it’s true that Baynham’s murder wasn’t at the hands of Islamists, there has been a steep rise in homo- and transphobic violence at the hands of Muslims in London and elsewhere. These aren’t Islamists that are attacking LGBTs either – in most cases they’re ordinary young Muslim men. In part this is probably due to a combination of increased animosity between Muslims and non-Muslims, and the particular inability of the Muslim community to integrate well into British society; integration has been far less of a problem for other groups such as Hindus, Sikhs, Africans and African-Caribbeans. Since most Muslims look down on LGBTs as dogs (bearing in mind the cultural implications this has for Muslims) treating us like dogs is a way of not being the “lowest of the low”.

  • Bill Perdue

    Very impressive demonstrations but I disagree with Queerty.

    What’s truly extraordinary is not demonstrations in England or the US but the desperate need for them. Anti-LGBT violence, especially against trans folks has been rising on both sides of the Atlantic, fueled by the bigotry of the abrahamic cults, primarily christers and islamists. In England one of the factors is the rise of fundamentalist christer groups with ties to US right wing christers and the fact that the BNP and DUP (two small fascist parties), the Tories and even Labour (in the case of same sex marriage) cater to them.

    Demonstrations like this, although not as focused, occur in Iran and other countries run by the killer ayatollahs. An exception is Iraq where the quisling government and American military authorities have a nasty habit of shooting demonstrators. Even before the recent mass rising in Iran demonstrations were held they occured when young men and women were lynched by the islamist state for the ‘crimes’ of being gay, feminist or trade union organizers.

    Tavdy79, do you think it’s possible that England’s failure to integrate some muslim youth stems from English support for US genocidal invasions and occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan, supporting zionist attempts at ethnic cleaning against Palestinians and incursions into Pakistan. I can’t imagine they’re not related to that that and to the rise of racist islamophobia, a relatively new phenomena in England and the EU promoted by European fascists and zionists and the US.

    It’s led to a rise of murders of young muslims like Rizwan Darbar, stabbed by a gang of toughs and Ahmed Hassan, stabbed in the back by a group of white youths at a train station in a racist lynching. Perhaps they had the same politics as the homohating ‘ayran’ pigs who killed Ian Baynham in London and who beat gay police cadet James Parks, now fighting for his life in a Liverpool ICU with severe head injuries, and who stomped to dath 18 year old Michael Causerand… there’s quite a long list and I couldn’t find any documentation that muslim youths were mainly at fault.

    Tavdy79, in the US the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs ( http://www.ncavp.org/about/default.aspx ) keeps detailed records on anti-GLBT violence. Is there a similar source of information in England?

    Terrwell is a racist who apes Nazi propaganda describing Jews as subhuman and the christers who describe us as subhuman. That’s sick. Very sick.

  • dontblamemeivotedforhillary

    Earth to Mars: there is Genocide of lgbts happening across this planet from NYC to Tehran. We are being exterminated in the name of religion!

  • reason

    @Bill Perdue “US genocidal invasions and occupations… Afghanistan… incursions into Pakistan… racist islamophobia …promoted by European fascists and zionists and the US”

    Last time I checked Afghanistan provided aid, comfort, material support, and training grounds to the organization that attacked us on 9/11. Lots of Muslims including the custodians of Islams two holiest cities, Saudi Arabia, are working toward the destruction of al-Qaeda and their most ardent supporters the Taliban. These are some of the most dangerous organizations in the world bent on the eradication of the United States and the deliverance of Islam with a sword snaked through the Qur’an. Why should the United States sit idly by as the Pakistanis nurse their egos while the enemies of humanity regroup in their territory. Now that blood is careening through the streets of Pakistan their government is realizing that if they do not act the river of blood is going to engulf their country, and Pakistan will be a name only noted in the history books.

    So don’t try to blame England’s ills on the U.S. or Jews, berate our military, and refer to the United States as Genocidal.

  • Bill Perdue

    Don’t be such a ninny, reason. Nobody believes your bs Fox News explanation for the invasions and occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan. And what do they have to do with the rise of anti-LGBT violence in England? Better go see if Jeff Beck or Rush can offer you some hints.

    The genocidal invasion and occupation of Iraq has one origin; to secure hegemony for US oil companies. It’s resulted in the deaths of nearly a million people. That’s genocide. Only idiots think it has something to do with weapons of mass destruction or the other lies invented by the Bushes and the Clintons.

    The invasion and occupation of Afghanistan is to secure control of the Baku-Pakistan-India gas pipe lines. Only morons like you and people who watch way too much Faux News think otherwise.

    Only rightwing extremists like you think the US has the right to invade, bomb and kill civilians anywhere it pleases.

    Only apologists for Bush downplay the fact that he cemented relations with the Conservatives in Canada, the Tories in England, the ‘Liberals’ in Australian and the National Party in NZ and the Tories in England, coaching them on the need to use issues like same sex marriage as wedge issues and creating opportunities of US evangelical rightists to expand into new territories.

    I don’t blame England’s ills on the US. I blame the rampant homobigotry in this country on the laws we inherited from the English and the rapaciousness of American politicians and cult leaders who use bigotry to advance their careers.

    I don’t blame Jews for anything, but I and lots of others blame zionists for ethnic cleansing and apartheid.

    I don’t berate the military, just the brass and their political leaders who put soldiers in harms way to enrich Chevron-Texaco, Haliburton and Xe, nee Blackwater. I’m a firm supporter of the GI antiwar movement.

    I don’t refer to the US as genocidal because I know that most Americans want out of Iraq and Afghanistan and are nervous, as they should be when Obama attacks Pakistan, a nuclear power. I do blame US oil companies, the military brass and politicians who are their lap dogs.

    And I blame ignorant paytriots who blindly goose step their way through life, thinking what they’re told to think and doing what they’re told to do.

  • reason

    @Bill Perdue

    You are truly insane and Anti-American, from your lack of knowledge about anything I have to ask where are you from?

    First you call me a liberal in a previous article now I am a right-wing extremist. I don’t watch Jeff Beck, whoever that is you are talking about, and I certainly don’t spend the time entertaining Rush’s garbage.

    You sound like one of those burnt out hippies from the 60’s that thought Nadar was going to win the 2008 election. Yall keep playing the same old tune oil, oil, oil. Everything is not about oil. The United States, Pakistan, and Saudi Arabia armed the Taliban/Al-Qaeda, provided financial support, and indoctrinated them with an extreme form of Wahhabism to motivate them to die in the mountains of Afghanistan defeating the “godless”communist Soviet Union. We got rid of the communist, but in return got a brainwashed, well trained, connected, and equipped religious organization that was hell bent on spreading its cancerous ideology with violence, destroying the sinful westerners “America”, and removing with the sword who they saw as interlopers, the Al Saud family, from current day Saudi Arabia thus taking over the two holy cities.

    Regardless of how they were formed they are here and a real threat to the entire middle east, Euro-Asia, and America. They struck us here at home and struck our interest and allies abroad, and will not rest until they have accomplished their goals. They have got to be destroyed before they destroy us.

    You are darn right Pakistan is a nuclear armed country and Al Qaeda is fighting to take it over. A nuclear armed Al Qaeda will bring unmeasurable chaos to the world, along with millions of deaths. For you to state that Obama attacked a nuclear power just expresses your lack of knowledge of worldly affairs. Obama is attacking Taliban/Al Qaeda in a part of Pakistan that is not controlled by the Pakistani central government, the holder of the nuclear weapons, that has already lost large swaths of the country to terrorist. Now the Pakistanis are begging the United States for help and more military supplies. Your talk about gas pipelines is retard granted that we are not fighting the Pakistani government, the proposer of the pipeline that doesn’t and may never exist, but terrorist that are trying to take Pakistan over. Also the United States doesn’t even want the proposed pipeline built granted that it will benefit our long time foe the Iranians while not doing anything for us.

    Iraq was a misadventure buy an overzealous president that was hungry to get even with an individual he felt had disgraced his father. Bush Sr. had severely weakened and contained Iraq, and knowing the history I was completely against entering that country. Now that we have, its our responsibility to stabilize it. People like you are part of the reason we have such a bad reputation. The U.S. enters a country and destabilizes, a new party gets elected, we abandon ship leaving the country in chaos. That chaos has the possibility of posing serious problems to our allies. The people that want out of both wars or are nervous are selfish, greedy, cowards. Regardless Iraq has nothing to do with Afghanistan.

  • Robert, NYC

    I don’t buy the argument that islamic people in Britain can’t integrate. The fact of the matter is, some of them refuse to adapt to western civilization. It begs the question, why do they emigrate to the west if they want to live by islamic law? There are hundreds of thousands of westernized muslims living in the UK and that of course is never reported, many have their own businesses. Other groups have integrated very well, there is absolutely no reason why disgruntled muslims can’t or any other group for that matter. If they’re so intent on imposing their religious way of life on the majority, then they’re living in the wrong country. Yet, why do they remain if its so bad?

  • terrwill

    Terrwell is a racist who apes Nazi propaganda describing Jews as subhuman and the christers who describe us as subhuman. That’s sick. Very sick.

    BIllPERDUE (at least I spelled your name right) I am so very sorry I “offended” the hard core islamic subhuman scumbags.

    You see I tend to get a little upset when I read how they torture and kill Gays throughout their world. How the 14 ane 16 yr old teen boys were arrested in Iran for being Gay. And after being jailed for two years subject to cycles of 30 lashes that ripped the flesh from their backs, lay in agony for two to three months, then once healed were forced to repeat the entire cycle again and again until they completed their “sentence”. And then suddenly when they were ready to be set free suddenly a new “charge” of “child molestation” was leveled against them and they were sentenced to hang. They were placed on a flatbed truck, had their blindfolds removed so they could see each other and the thousands of cheering “fans” and the truck drove forward slowly so they endured a slow torturous death by strangulation.
    Or how about the wonderful “persons” in Iraq who round up Gays or anyone ever suspected of being Gay and use electric drills with oversized bits to drill into the bones, demanding names of more people to subject to ths same torture.

    Yea these islamic subhuman scumbags are just that. And how the fuck do you twist my statements to make it so the Jews are described as such. The only part of your statement that is correct is that the Nazis too were subhuman scumbags. Your kind physically makes me want to vomit. There is no reasoning with these people. Their kind has hatred for Gays burned into their core, there is no reasoning or discussing “common ground” with this filth. You are a vile disgusting pig for even giving sanction to those who would exterminate us without an afterthought

  • Robert, NYC

    If Islam is the so called “peaceful religion” that it claims to be, then why doesit not decry its own violent extremists and why don’t any of their national leaders condemn the putting to death of innocent gay men just for being who they are? I find nothing peaceful about that and those who claim it is, including some of our western leaders, then they’re in denial an complicit in those deaths. The Koran teaches that the taking of life is wrong, clearly it doesn’t apply when it comes to gay people. How can anyone in their right mind defend that kind of religion?

  • strumpetwindsock

    @ Robert, NYC

    Actually there are plency of Islamic leaders who denounce violence. You just have to do a bit of looking, because unfortunately it doesn’t make for a sexy front page story or breaking news on Fox.

  • Gayle

    “When a gay man is murdered in Iraq, or a lesbian woman raped in South Africa, or a transgender fella is assaulted in Uganda, there simply are not these masses of human beings who are free to stand up, have their voices heard, and demand action.”

    South Africa has legal same-sex marriage. I doubt they got that far without having masses of people willing to denounce homophobic violence. Are you just stereotyping all of Africa now?

  • Tommy

    I don’t know how this became a discussion about Islam. If you look at the people who do hate crimes against gay people, the majority of the perpetrators are not Muslims, In fact, a lot of the young out of control straight guys who beat up gay people are not part of any religious group. They tend to get their ideas against gay people from hip hop and their peers not from some church or mosque.

    And there were protests against the rape of the lesbian in South Africa. I agree with the post about Iraq and Uganda, because those aren’t democratic countries. But South Africa is a democracy like the Us and the UK that allows protests of this kind.

  • Robert, NYC

    Tommy, religious cults do play a role in some of the hate and homophobia when they oppose equality, such as the C of E for starters, along with its big sister cult in Rome. Young people hear that kind of talk and for some it gives them licence to go out and bash LGBT people. These cults may not intentionally do it to incite this kind of behaviour, but it certainly doesn’t help, Islam not withstanding.It would be naive of anyone to believe that religious cults have not been accomplices in fuelling homophobia, look at their history to the present day. In fact, they are the ones primarily responsible for its institution for more than two millenia in most western societies.

    We’ve yet to see British muslim youths imitating the crimes recently committed, and believe me, it will come. But then you only have to look across the north sea at Holland where there have been a number of gay bashings perpetrated by muslim youths with not one word of condemnation from their imams.

  • Bill Perdue

    Terrwell is an islamophobe and a racist because he condemns all muslims for the acts of religious fanatics like the killer ayatollahs in Iran and the US armed and trained shiite and sunni murderers in Iraq.

    Not all racists are islamophobes but all islamophobes are racists. Not all followers of the christers, islamists and judaic cults are bigots, but their bigotry derives form the deliberately ignorant and superstitious dogma of those cults.

    Condemning all muslims for the crimes of the ayatollahs is like condemning all Americans that support the Democrats and Republicans which is the sole support of the zionists who impose apartheid conditions on Palestinians. That apartheid is interlaced with periodic doses of ethnic cleansing when hundreds are killed.

    It’s like condemning all Jamaicans for the bigotry sponsored by the unholy trinity of rightist parties, the cults and a few thugs in the music business.

    That’s like blaming all Americans for the genocide in Iraq and the mass murders of civilians in Afghanistan and the rising death toll in Pakistan.

    It’s like blaming all Serbs for the mass murders of over 100,000 muslims in Bosnia-Herzegovinia or balming all muslims for the ethnic cleansing in Darfur.

    It’s racist nonsense. Everything Terrwill says, if you change Muslim to Jew, has been said before by Hitler and Goebbels and is being said now by the new neo-Nazi grouops in the EU.

    Racism like that is sick and it’s dangerous.

  • Bill Perdue

    ‘reason’ is relentlessly stupid. He’s a mouthpiece for the oil industry and the militarists. He says “Yall keep playing the same old tune oil, oil, oil. Everything is not about oil.”

    What an idiot.

    Republican Senator CHARLES HAGEL: “People say we’re not fighting for oil. Of course we are. They talk about America’s national interest. What the hell do you think they’re talking about? We’re not there for figs.” (Speaking at Catholic University, Sept. 24, 2007)

    Former Federal Reserve Chairman ALAN GREENSPAN , in his book The Age of Turbulence: Adventures in a New World: “I’m saddened that it is politically inconvenient to acknowledge what everyone knows: The Iraq war is largely about oil.

    Democratic Senator JOHN TESTER: “We’re still fighting a war in Iraq and people who are honest about it will admit we’re there over oil. ” (Associated Press, Sept. 24, 2007)

    General JOHN ABIZAID: retired commander of CENTCOM: “Of course it’s about oil, we can’t really deny that. ” (Speaking at Stanford University, Oct. 13, 2007)


    “The West won the world not by the superiority of its ideas or values or religion but rather by its superiority in applying organized violence. Westerners often forget this fact, non-Westerners never do.” Samuel P. Huntington

    The people of the US and our soldiers have no interests in protecting the overseas wealth of the looter rich in their oil colonies.

    To end the wars and occupations the antiwar movement is demanding the total, permanent and immediate withdrawal of all US forces from the regions and cutting the purse strings that allow the zionists to practice apartheid and ethnic cleansing in Palestine.

  • reason

    @ Bill Perdue

    No bill you are relentlessly stupid or just can’t read and comprehend. I am clearly talking about Afghanistan and your trying to drudge up quotes of people expressing opinions about Iraq. Iraq and Afghanistan are two completely different wars being fought for entirely different reasons. As I stated above “Iraq was a misadventure.” No one knows the true motivation for Bush marching into Iraq granted Bush has never admitted the reason, but he did and it is our job to stabilize that country.

    Who the hell is Charles Hagel you moron it’s Chuck, buy yourself a clue. This guy is lost in Vietnam, because that went badly doesn’t mean that we should not fight again and let our enemies cross the waters and kill us in the streets.

  • reason

    @Bill Perdue

    Oil is a magical chemical and has brought our society a long way. Without it you would be a sick idiot without pharmaceuticals rummaging around in a mud hut you ungrateful fool. Alternative Energy can play a big role in the future, but I am not going to attempt to rewrite history in an attempt to demonize oil companies and petroleum at every turn. Oil and Afghanistan are not related.

  • McShane

    @· Bill Perdue I’m glad you’re still around telling the truth.
    @ No. 19 · Reason : “Oil and Afghanistan are not related”
    wrong. The reason Afganistan is valuable is that it is the only pipline route to the West., along whuich the U.S. has all of it’s major defenses.

  • Robert, NYC

    Strumpetwindsock, in which countries are these islamic decryers of violence towards their own LGBT people? Who are these imams or mullahs exactly and why are they not geting any attention? I can’t imagine any would be advocating nonviolence towards us at the peril of putting their own lives in jeopardy. I’m far from right wing, in fact I’m beyond a democrat, far far beyond.

  • strumpetwindsock

    @ #22 Robert, NYC

    In the west, almost exclusively. I grant you that, but there are leaders and even imams who have spoken out against homophobic violence. There are examples in this article from 2005:
    http://www.mail-archive.com/[email protected]/msg00002.html

    And there are others, in the west and in countries with an islamic majority, who reject violent interpretation of sharia generally, without specific reference to anti-gay violence.

    I am not denying that Islam is far behind Christianity and Judaism when it comes to rejecting fundamentalism. But it is a mistake to assume that Islam is just one monolithic thing with one mind. It is a group of 1.5 billion people (one or two of them gay, I suspect) all over the world.

    I have heard similar sentiments that muslims cannot understand democracy, and therefore will never change. The progress they are making may seem slow, but we should remember it is being made under much higher risk than in other religious communities. Even in the west, people face threats of death and violence for speaking out.

    They have a long way to go, surely, as we also do. But we don’t help matters by shutting the door in their faces.

  • strumpetwindsock

    Plus (to bring it back to the topic of this thread) people speaking out against violence usually doesn’t grab the headlines like violent acts do. The media are, after all, guided by similar pressures as religions and governments are.
    Rallies like this are important, but they unfortunately don’t usually get the coverage they deserve.

  • Bill Perdue

    No. 21 · McShane. Thanks. If memory serves this ‘reason’ cretin is an admitted Bushite.

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