2008-07-25 / Letters

Editorial Comment Is Hateful

Dear Editor,

Robert Sarnoff's editorial comment, "Vinnie, do you take Ralph… not that there's anything wrong with that…," follows in the long tradition of vilifying what you are afraid of, don't understand, don't like and don't want, perfected by Nazi Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels in his handling of Hitler's war against the Jews.

Sarnoff knows a picture is worth a thousand words. So what is he saying here? Against a black background are two hairy, masculine hands, the one with a wedding band being slipped over his ring finger by the other. The hands don't look normal. Who has hands that hairy? Werewolves? Vampires? Oh, yes… GAYS!!! And what do we do to werewolves and vampires? We hunt them down and kill them. Why? Because they are evil. So gays must be evil, too. And they live among us. See where I'm going? Here are two examples:

In 1990, 29 year old Julio Rivera was lured into an isolated corner of a Jackson Heights schoolyard and savagely beaten with a hammer and bottle before being stabbed to death BECAUSE HE WAS GAY.

In 2006, 28 year old Michael Sandy drove his car to a parking lot alongside

Plumb Beach,

near Sheepshead Bay, was viciously attacked and forced into a roaring lane of traffic where he was hit by a car. He died a few days later, after his family decided to remove the life support respirator that was keeping him alive. Why did this happen? BECAUSE HE WAS GAY.

It's only recently that physical violence against gays was made a Hate Crime in New York State. Do we now need to add pictures and phrases to violence as Hate Crimes, as in Canada? I hope not. However, when one has a position of influence within a community such as does Sarnoff, he needs to think twice before putting a pen to paper and ask himself, "will this cartoon cause some hotheaded insecure youth to seek out some unsuspecting gay man for attack?" And correspondingly, if that should happen, should Sarnoff be held accountable for his actions?

Whatever your position is on Gay Marriage, it's important to remember that the public square and voting booth are the best places for civil discourse. Express your opinion with petitions, letters and your vote, not with a hammer, bottle, or knife. And ignore vicious images and words.

LENNY ROSENBLATT

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