In recent weeks, we’ve heard about two high-profile attacks – one at the historic Stonewall Inn, ironically the site of the start of the gay liberation movement in 1969. Two attackers cornered a man in the bathroom of Stonewall and assaulted him, but were surprised when the victim began fighting back. The attackers ended up running from the bar, chased by the bartender and victim’s boyfriend.
Then last week, Frederick Giunta was charged with assaulting a man inside Ty’s bar on Christopher Street, followed by an attack against the bartender at Julius’, New York’s oldest gay bar.
In addition to the well-publicized crimes, we also heard stories of other assaults that have been apparently under-reported in recent months including that of a gay man who was pushed down stairs of a subway platform by four men, beaten, robbed and left unconscious for more then 4 hours. The police on location at the march declined comment as to whether there has been a rise in hate violence in the West Village.
So last night, the United for Christopher Street Coalition put together a march to end violence. Roughly 150 people marched from Christopher Street and the West Side Highway to Sheridan Square – the site of the Stonewall Riots.
All photographs (c) Jamie McGonnigal; EqualityPhotography.com