If you are from South Florida or know someone from South Florida, you are aware of the popular Gay Pride event that takes place every year on Miami Beach. Artists come out from all parts of the country and every genre to perform, people dress in all colors of the rainbow, there’s music, and the streets are packed with an ambiance of nothing but pure love. This is a weekend for individuals to come together and celebrate the acceptance of people for who they are and as they are.
This past weekend, a gay couple was assaulted and beaten by a group of four young males. Why? Seemingly the two men were spotted holding hands by the four men and were pursued. Surveillance footage shows not only the face of the assailants but also the entire incident that took place. As with any injustice amongst any demographic or category of individuals, I am disgusted.
We live in a time where hate crimes are not given enough attention. I bet not many people are aware of the fact that there are 5 states who have yet to pass hate crime laws: Georgia, Arkansas, South Carolina, Wyoming, and Indiana. This is something that should be addressed at a federal level.
This kind of animosity should not be considered an instance where we should leave it up to the state to decide what they want to do. Our time proves evident that it is still a serious issue and clearly, not everyone cares enough to do something (this is me throwing shade at the five states). Something should have been done a very long time ago.
This does not start with the courts, this does not start with government officials, this starts at home and yes, this starts with you.
The way we as a society treat one another says a lot about what we demand as a community. When we respect one another, it shows we demand that respect. When we treat one another with compassion, it should only exude that we do not condone otherwise.
If you have an issue with the way someone expresses themselves, bite your tongue. If you think someone is doing something that goes against your personal religious beliefs, bite your tongue. Just because someone else lives their life differently from you does NOT mean you have any right to try and impose yours on them.
If you cannot live and let live and are so affected by the world around you, move to a rural area in seclusion with no access to technology like cell phones or Internet connection and make your own living away from a society you cannot grow with. But as long as you have to coexist with the inhabitants around you, hate should not and will not be condoned by anyone that wants to see a brighter tomorrow.
The freedom we are provided by this amazing country full of opportunity should not be taken advantage of by using it to fuel, instill or practice hate and vile actions. If you witness an injustice, don’t turn the other cheek as one day, the victim of the same injustice can be you, or someone you love; life has a funny way of giving us a taste of our own medicine.
If you witness someone being harassed, say something and do something to intervene and potentially stop something horrible from happening. For you to witness something as horrific as what happened on South Beach and just walk on by, makes you just as guilty and spineless as those thugs.
The purpose of our existence on this land is to coexist and to evolve, not digress. The purpose of our judicial system is to enforce laws for us to coexist. Just because you are not personally affected does not mean one day you won’t be, or that you should not care.We are all pink inside, every single one of us.
It’s 2018. Make the conscious choice to break free from the chains of hate that are placed there by external factors WE can overpower.
If you or someone you know has information on the assailants responsible for this incident, reach out to Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at (305) 571- 8477.