05/15/2013 08:18 am ET Updated Jul 15, 2013

Hate Crimes in Our Neighborhoods

In the past week, three separate violent gay-bashing assaults have been reported in our neighborhoods. Twice in the West Thirties, and once on Christopher Street, members of our community were attacked, beaten and barraged with anti-gay slurs, just for being who they are.

The LGBT community has come a very long way in the last few years. State after state is recognizing our right to marry, and discrimination against LGBT Americans is becoming increasingly unacceptable -- even if the law still lags behind. Yet these attacks remind us how much hatred remains, and how vulnerable we remain.

It is not, of course, only LGBT New Yorkers who must fear hate crimes. Indeed, across the city hate crime has been on the rise. Attacks on Jewish New Yorkers, African-Americans, Latinos, women and more continue to break our bones and harm our souls.

Hate crimes are actually two crimes. First, they impact and terrify the immediate victims of violence. But further, they act as a tool to intimidate whole communities. When hate crimes rise, they divide us, they make us afraid to be who we are in the city we love. We cannot accept this as a community or as a city.

Please join me, Queer Rising, The Anti-Violence Project and many others tomorrow, Thursday, May 16th at 7:00 PM, as we rally and march in response to these crimes. Details are below. After the Rally, we will march through Chelsea, going south along 8th Avenue, ending at Horatio Street/Jackson Square Park. I hope to see you there.

QUEERS TAKE BACK THE NIGHT: A Rally and March in Response to Dual Hate-Crimes

Thursday, May 16, 2013, 7:00 - 9:00 PM
Meet outside Madison Square Garden
(specifically the SW-corner of 7th Avenue and W.33rd Street)
More info at: