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I was going to make a Real Blog Post out of this but realized I do not have it in me right now to add enough commentary to make it more than a signal-booster--and since I have more LJ/DW friends than blog readers, it seemed more sensible just to post it here.

EDGE Boston reports that a transgendered man was attacked in a restroom on the Long Beach campus of Cal State. The story is dated April 28, 2010, and the attack took place on April 15.

There has been almost no reporting of this incident in California itself that I can find with a quick Google. The LA Times ran a couple of extremely brief stories giving the bare details without any sort of followup. They did manage to use the right pronouns, but the second article emphasized only that the victim was "satisfied" with how CSU officials dealt with the incident, but EDGE Boston notes that not everyone in the QTBLG community at CSU Long Beach feels quite so happy about it.

From here, all I can think to say is why did I only hear about this yesterday? I don't keep up with daily news particularly obsessively precisely because most stories are distressing in one way or another so I have to conserve my emotional energy to those things that I choose to take on. I'd have liked to have taken this on a little sooner--not that there is anything in particular I can do, other than make sure people know that this sort of thing can and does happen even in California cities. The student who was attacked has stated that Cal State felt like a second home to him but he no longer feels safe there.

I kinda wonder how satisfied he can be with the school's response if campus is no longer a safe place for him.

This entry was composed @Dreamwidth and can also be read at http://eriktrips.dreamwidth.org/3079.html

Feel free to comment either here or there.


( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
(Deleted comment)
May. 14th, 2010 11:45 pm (UTC)
What I had meant to say was that I do follow "internet" news to the degree that it filters out through various communities and forums. This is the sort of thing that doesn't really surprise me when it does not cause a stir in mainstream media but I am surprised not to have heard about it on the internet until almost a month after it happened.
May. 14th, 2010 08:39 am (UTC)
I heard about this a week or so ago, and nothing since. Is it for real? It just got buried it seems.

I would think the police would be called into investigate this, it is all very strange. It seems as though it went nowhere. Also, that is interesting about the supposed "Aztec" aspect, the comments on the website regarding the murder of LGBT people by "Aztec" law during the Chicana conference, and the threats to the organizers of this conference. All weird stuff...

The story has died down, and one would think that they would be searching for a perp.

It is horrible of course, but it seems all very odd.
May. 14th, 2010 11:54 pm (UTC)
Weird comments happen on the internet. Whatever was said on the website promoting the Chicana conference really doesn't have anything to do with the alleged attack except to the degree that they are being rhetorically connected both in the EDGE story and by student groups at Cal State.

The LA Times reports that Cal State police are looking for the perp. When incidents like this happen on a university campus, it is not always guaranteed that local police will get involved unless homicide is one of the crimes committed. Even rape victims often choose not to prosecute--if the guy no longer feels safe, then he may not want further action himself.

It's hard to say from here, with so little being reported, why the story has been hushed up and why there hasn't been any sort of community outcry beyond what EDGE reports at Cal State itself.
May. 14th, 2010 10:31 am (UTC)
I had heard about it right away, through the internets. I should have reposted it. There were links to a Long Beach TV news story about a rally two weekss after. At which he spoke and was on camera, but I see the EDGE story says he wants his name out of the papers now. So I guess I won't repost that.

Anyway, aside from blog posts and email, the story doesn't seem to have gotten picked up nationally.

I just wrote a long comment and erased it. I need to think more. Anyway, it's scary.
May. 15th, 2010 12:02 am (UTC)
Yeah maybe he is shying away from publicity and that is keeping the story relatively low-profile.

This reminds me uncomfortably of the woman raped in the East Bay for having a rainbow sticker on her car a little over a year ago. Too close for comfort, you know? Long Beach is not nearby, but it is close enough to a major city to feel like it could just as well have happened in Berkeley.

Stuff like this is why I don't watch the news, actually, but I think we have to keep in mind who is secure where. That is, nobody, nowhere, really.
May. 14th, 2010 02:26 pm (UTC)
i saw something about it the other day and was horrified. we're so fucked up as a culture. :(
May. 15th, 2010 12:06 am (UTC)
Yeah. It's our fucked-upedness that keeps me from keeping tabs on the news beyond what filters through to me on the internet. But given the groups I belong to, I would have expected to have heard of this before now.

Mostly I find it disturbing because it happened in a major West Coast urban area. Stuff happens here, too, of course, but for the most part we like to think we are safe where we live.
May. 15th, 2010 09:34 am (UTC)
Mostly I find it disturbing because it happened in a major West Coast urban area. Stuff happens here, too, of course, but for the most part we like to think we are safe where we live.

I actually have no illusions that living here makes me safer than living elsewhere. Gwen Araujo lived near here and others have as well. I think we have more trans victims here than in other areas of the country simply because we have more out or visible trans people. I was fag baited when I lived in the Castro, as were all the (straight) guys I had as roommates. Why? Because people came there from other places, looking for gay men and assumed we were all gay men since we lived there.

May. 15th, 2010 12:04 pm (UTC)
The relative safety here isn't an illusion. But it is not absolute: it is easy for bigots to find gay and/or transgendered people if we are all in one place, but the overall culture of the urban West Coast is different from that of other cities and strikingly different from that of smaller towns and rural areas in the US.

At least, I don't think my experience in the Deep South versus my experience on the West Coast is entirely due to time passing. I was able to hold hands as a dyke with my girlfriend in Seattle the same year that we would have been openly harassed for doing the same in Atlanta and probably assaulted for doing so in, say, rural Paulding County, GA.

Outside of major cities like Atlanta and Houston, things have not changed much in that part of the country. On a per capita basis and based on my own experience, I'd be willing to bet that looking queer in the Castro is much safer than looking queer in more conservative areas. No place is completely safe, but some places are safer than others.
May. 16th, 2010 10:24 am (UTC)
Well, it is interesting that the attack occurred on a University Campus on the west coast. But, as you say, no place is absolutely safe. It will be interesting to see what they find out about this, if they can unravel it.

I feel just as safe in Denver say - as I do here, but Denver is not the deep south. I would agree with you off-hand about the deep south, about it being less safe generally for weird people outside the norm. But, then again, I am not familiar with the area, and this may also be my prejudice at work. On the other hand, any place without a good helping of white hipsters tends to be less safe for queer people, let's face it. So, as annoying as they can be, white hipsters tend to help create queer friendly environments, and ya gotta love'em for that!
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )


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