Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Woman beaten at McDonalds. Heinous yes, hate crime, no.

A link to a Red Eye with Greg Gutfeld and an interview with the victim.

Listen to what the victim says. She never once says she was being attacked for being transgendered. She says that the girls were "just looking to pick a fight that night." I never heard any transgendered slurs being used in the actual video of the attack. It's not a hate crime.

As Greg Gutfeld wanted to know, I also ask "Why isn't the crime bad enough on it's own?" This woman is a human being, her attackers need to be held accountable for her assault, but not as a hate crime. Unless you know something I don't?

If I was mugged on my way home from work, I wouldn't claim it was a hate crime. Though, being a lesbian in this day and age, I could probably get away with calling it that. It's a mugging, it's a crime of opportunity.

To simply claim that any attack on a minority is a hate crime is to completely invalidate the very real issue of hate crimes. They do exist and they are a problem. If I was attacked for being a lesbian or a woman, then I would call it a hate crime. Why? Because, not only have I been attacked, but every other person in my minority feels a little less safe because of the attack. Hate crimes are more than just assault or vandalism, they are terrorism.

A 14 year old at McDonald's who is spoiling for a fight is not a hate crime. Even if the victim happens to be transgendered.

Was the crime heinous? Yes, but it would be just as heinous if it had happened to anyone else. People need to be held accountable. The girls who attacked the victim and the employees who did nothing to stop it, in fact aided the attackers in leaving the establishment, both groups need to be held accountable.

But for the sake of real hate crimes and for the sake of other victims of abuse and violence, don't try to turn this in to something it's not.

In the interest of fairness I'm going to post a bit of article from Autostraddle. In which, the victim, is changing her story from the interview I link to above.

On Sunday, in an interview in the Baltimore Sun, Polis said the attack was “definitely a hate crime” and talked a little about her experience:
“They started ripping my hair, throwing me on the floor, kicking me on my face. When I tried to use the phone, the girl ripped the phone out of my hand [...] when I sat there to collect my stuff back, the one girl kicked me in my back, stepped on my arm. I had so many bruises. [...] I don’t remember having a seizure. I do remember going into one, that’s why I tried to sit there and be calm. Every time I tried to walk away, they followed me. [...] Anyone in my predicament should not be afraid to walk the streets. They should not have to go into a restaurant and get gawked at and made fun of. They shouldn’t be afraid to leave the house. It’s just wrong.”

 The police report also tells a different story. I'm left wondering who is telling the truth now and whether the victim is changing her story for some particular reason. 

"According to the police report, the incident began when the two attackers were upset when Polis tried to use the women’s bathroom in the McDonald’s."

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