Today is National Coming Out Day. The need to speak out for the equality and basic humanity of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people was underscored for me yesterday when I read in The New York Times about the most recent in a series of hate crimes against the LGBT community. Last week a gang of nine men kidnapped a 30-year-old man in New York and tortured him horrifically for hours simply because he was gay. Two gay 17-year-olds were also attacked.
My wife and I had the same first response to the story: “There are no words.” But as I reflected further, the word that emerged in response was outrage; that is, I felt anger that we live in a world in which such hate exists. At the same time, I felt resolve to speak out to help prevent such hate crimes in the future.
One of my friends said that the article sounded like a scene from the film Pulp Fiction. But rather than a demented figment of Quentin Tarantino’s imagination, this story is all too real. The Unfinished Lives Blog described the episode as a “Wolf-Like Gay-bashing Rampage.”
Today is a day for coming out of the closet: as a lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender person — or simply as an advocate for the basic human rights of all people regardless of race, creed, gender, or sexual orientation.