A prominent LGBT activist in New York City was assaulted on Friday night by a group of 9-10 men who yelled antigay slurs at the openly gay man while they punched him in the jaw, reports the New Civil Rights Movement. This assault marks the ninth reported antigay attack in New York City in the past 30 days.
Eugene Lovendusky, a member of the direct action group Queer Rising, organized last week's vigil mourning Mark Carson, the 32-year-old gay man who was shot dead at point-blank range on May 18. Lovendusky was attacked in Hell's Kitchen on Friday night, according to a Facebook page launching a campaign to respond to the recent spate of antigay violence in New York.
That campaign, labeled #AskQuestions, asked LGBT people to meet Saturday night at 10 p.m. on the corner of 34th St. and 7th Ave. carrying signs that read "I Am A Homosexual. #AskQuestions." Participants marched their signs through neighborhoods where recent antigay assaults have taken place, inviting bystanders to ask questions and get informed, rather than strike out in violent ignorance.
In addition to Carson's murder, several gay couples and individual gay men have been assaulted by groups of assailants yelling homophobic epithets in recent weeks. A nightlife promoter was assaulted in Lower Manhattan Monday night, just hours after a peace rally that called for an end to the anti-LGBT violence. That same evening, a gay Latino couple was assaulted in the early morning hours in SoHo by two men yelling antigay slurs. Two more antigay assaults took place near Madison Square Garden earlier this month — one on May 10, and another on May 5.
The demonstration was successful in sparking conversations, wrote event organizer Alan Bounville on the event's Facebook page. "What a great evening educating and having very moving conversations with people," wrote Bounville in a post accompanying a collection of photos from the event. Bounville and his supporters produced a short video documenting the demonstration. Watch that below.