This is an adjunct post to RubyFruit’s Radical Lesbian Feminism or Political Lesbian in 2012, in which RubyFruit outlines Adrienne Rich’s key points in compulsory heterosexuality.
Part of the first point is also the largely invisible cultural grooming, more pronounced now than when I was a girl, the Disney-style propaganda that brainwashes little girls into thinking their their primary mission in life is to ‘find their prince, get married, and live happily ever after’. It is when the brainwashing fails to ‘take’ or is resisted in any way, that the more overt methods are applied to force females back into heterosexuality – lesbian bashing and femicide of lesbians, particularly visible lesbians.
Within the last month there have been at least three major instances of attacks on lesbians, although I am sure there have been numerous other minor instances as well.
The first attack involved a young lesbian couple in a park in a small town in Texas, sometime during the Friday night of 22 June. Both the young women had been shot, Mollie Olgin (19) fatally. Her partner of five months, Christine Chapa (18) was in a serious condition but recovered from her injuries. As an aside, Christine did not have health insurance, so if you if you are able to donate please do. They are the sweetest most non-threatening couple, and it defies belief how the male suspect could do such a thing.
Two teenage girls in a relationship were found with gunshot wounds to the head in a south Texas park, with one of them dying from her injuries, media reports say. Police were searching for their assailants.
Mollie Judith Olgin, 19, and Mary Christine Chapa, 18, were found in knee-deep grass in a nature area in Portland by a couple Saturday, said Portland Police Chief Randy Wright, who confirmed to msnbc.com details first reported by the Corpus Christi Caller Times.
Olgin, originally from Ingleside but recently living in Corpus Christi, died; Chapa, of Sinton, was rushed to a hospital where she had surgery and was in serious but stable condition on Sunday, local NBC affiliate kristv.com reported. Wright said Chapa was still in the hospital on Monday.
Friends told kristv.com that the girls had been together five months. Wright said he didn’t have any information about their relationship, noting that “we understood from their friends that they were (in a romantic relationship). I know from … Mollie’s parents that they were very close.”
When asked if police had been able to determine if the girls’ sexuality played any role in the shootings, Wright told msnbc.com: “That’s always something that we’re looking for, but as of this point, we have not been able to establish that that had anything to do with the attack.”
He said they had been in communication with Chapa. He noted all indications were that “third parties” were involved in the assault.
“If we had a name, you know, we’d be having a different conversation right now. But we have not been able to gather enough information to identify a suspect yet,” he said. “It appears as if … this was not just a random attack but that’s something that we really have to develop over time.”
Wright said police had recovered a bullet casing from a large-caliber gun at the scene, but they haven’t found the weapon. A resident living nearby reported hearing two loud bangs Friday before midnight but believed they were from firecrackers, the newspaper said.
The park, more of nature area with some parts overgrown and no lights, was generally frequented by visitors during the day. It is located along a bluff overlooking a bay, Wright said, with some homes situated nearby.
“We’re not really sure how they got to the point that they were found,” he said of the girls. “It is a scenic overlook with a wooden deck and there is a place at the edge of the deck where you can actually go down a very steep incline into a grassy area that leads down to the shoreline and that’s where they found.”
Friends of the girls gathered at a local high school on Sunday. Olgin’s roommate, Samantha Garrett, told kristv.com that the fun-loving couple hadn’t gotten any negative responses to their relationship and could not think of why anyone would want to harm them.
The crime rate is low in Portland, a bedroom community of Corpus Christi on the Gulf of Mexico, Wright said. The last homicide occurred two years ago.
An unnamed 16yo lesbian was attacked in the street in Louisville, Kentucky. She was accompanied by two younger boys who were less seriously injured, but the teenaged girl had her jaw broken in several places and teeth knocked out as well as other injuries. The attacking group consisted of four males (three white, one black) and a female who did not participate in the beating. During the beating the group shouted anti-lesbian slurs and insults. (Video interviews with the news article.)
LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) – A teen girl is recovering at home after being injured in an attack by a group of adults. Her family said after talking with police, they believe she’s a victim of a hate crime.
It happened early Tuesday morning on Taylor Boulevard near Wyandotte Park.
The girl, who suffered several injuries including a broken jaw was with two younger boys when the attack happened. They said the adults yelled anti-gay slurs at the girl before she was beaten.
“Her jaw is broken in several places and she has to have a plate put in her jaw,” said family friend Brenda Hickerson. “She continued describing the 17-year old girl’s injuries, “She has teeth knocked out of her mouth and she has scrapes and bruises.”
They are injuries Hickerson said that came for no reason other than being gay.
Hickerson asked, “What did she do so wrong but, walk to the store and just be who she is? ”
Andi Hornback got a call after 1:00 Tuesday morning. Her two boys ages 13 and 15 had slipped out of the house to get some chips and a coke at a store around the corner with the girl who’s a family friend.
Hornback said, “My son called me and said mom, can you come meet us because we feel uncomfortable,” he told her, “there are four grown-ups following us a little too close.”
The boys said, the men started yelling anti-gay slurs toward the teen girl before they could give their mom the exact location over the phone. Hornback remembered, hearing her son suddenly scream, “I can’t even describe it to you,” she said holding back tears, “I’m getting ready to cry, hearing my child scream and know that they were hurt and they were scared and I couldn’t get there fast enough.”
By the time Hornback arrived, EMS and police were there.
One of her two sons suffered a concussion after being knocked down trying to help the girl.
“She was on the ground with blood just pouring out of her face,” Hickerson said, “these grown men put her on the ground, kicked her in her stomach, kicked her in her face and punched her in the face and kept going until a bystander yelled stop and called 911.”
Hickerson added, “I think she was targeted for being a strong lesbian young girl.”
The violence happened in front of two churches. Jeff McCarty, the Pastor of St. James Church said hearing about the beating makes him sad, “How sorry I am that this happened anywhere but, especially in front of our church family,” he told WAVE 3 News.
“This was a hate crime,” Hickerson said, “There were hate slurs and this was not a robbery because they didn’t take anything from them.”
The boys say the woman in the group of adults didn’t attack anyone. They are hoping she or someone who knows what happened will go to police.
Hickerson wants to believe the woman’s conscience will guide her, “Otherwise, you are saying that this is right to hate,” she said, “and it’s just not right!”
Louisville Metro Police confirm they are investigating the assault.
The men are described as a light skinned black male around 5’10” in his early 20’s or late teens. He was last seen wearing a red shirt and blue jeans. Two white males in the same age range, one 5’10, with short hair, last seen with a light colored shirt and pants with an art design on them. The other white male is described as 5’8”, also with short hair wearing a light colored shirt and baggy shorts that went to his knees.
The female is described as light skinned around 5’6” wearing shorts, a gray tank top and white Air Jordans shoes.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Police tip-line at (502) 574-LMPD.
In the third major incident in the space of four weeks, a lesbian was attacked in a home invasion in Lincoln Nebraska. The unnamed woman was in her home when three masked males forcibly entered her home, tied her wrists and ankles with zip-ties, and among other things, carved words such as ‘cunt’, ‘fag’ and ‘dyke’ into her face and naked body. They then poured fuel on the floor and lit a match, thankfully there was not major damage and the woman was able escape to a neighbour’s to get help. They also spraypainted hate messages on her basement wall.
LINCOLN, Neb. — Over 500 people gathered on the steps of the Nebraska State Capitol Sunday night to hold a vigil for a lesbian woman brutalized early Sunday morning in what local LGBT activists are calling a hate crime.
According to Lincoln, Neb., Police Captain Joe Wright, patrol officers responded to an address two blocks south of Lincoln High School in the downtown area, for a reported assault and house fire.
The victim, whose name has not been released, told officers that she had been attacked earlier that morning by three masked men who barged into her house, bound her wrists and ankles with zip ties, cut her all over her body and carved homophobic slurs into her skin before dumping gasoline on her floor and lighting it with a match.
A friend described the cuts as “things carved on her body that can only be described as hate, that somebody can only be taught and we need to stop teaching it.”
A source to LGBTQ Nation said “the words ‘cunt,’ ‘fag’ and ‘dyke’ were carved onto her face and body, and that the assailants tried to set her house on fire.”
Lincoln fire department arson investigator Damon Robbins, told the local media that there was evidence that a match flame ignited vapors from a pool of gasoline on the woman’s floor, but the flash fire did not continue to burn and caused no noticeable damage to the house.
Friends said the men who assaulted her also spray painted anti-gay words in her basement, including “We found u dyke.” Friends called the attack a hate crime because the woman assaulted is a lesbian.
“When someone takes the time to handcuff someone with a zip tie and carve derogatory comments or words into somebody else’s body, that’s sheer hate and at this point, this is a hate crime,” the friend said.
“Our hearts go out to the victim, her family and close friends,” said Tyler Richard, president of Outlinc, a group that supports LGBT people in Lincoln. “Many in our community are understandably experiencing a great deal of sadness, anger and confusion. We look to our entire community to pull together in this difficult time, ” he said.
The assault has sparked outrage in Lincoln’s LGBT community, which is already galvanized by the ongoing debate over the city’s fairness amendment — a proposal to ban discrimination in housing and employment based on a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity. The measure is now on a ballot referendum for this November.
Karen Bratton-Cranford, president of the LGBT advocacy group Star City Pride, took the microphone at Sunday night’s vigil to urge those gathered to act with respect and to refrain from seeking revenge, reported the Lincoln Star-Journal.
“Don’t go out and act on your own,” she said. “Don’t give them the power to control your actions.”
Police have not yet ruled the attack a hate crime, and Lincoln’s Police Chief Jim Peschong, refused to comment, citing an ongoing criminal investigation.
Officials told LGBTQ Nation late Sunday evening that no arrests had been made. The victim has been treated for her wounds and is staying with friends.
All four women were clearly attacked for being lesbians, these are clear cut cases of hate crimes – but the authorities are very reluctant to name them hate crimes – this is totally outrageous. Is it because they are female, and ‘hate crime’ does not apply because misogyny is the normal state of the world? The authorities are much quicker to label violence against transwomen as a hate crime. The day-to-day violence that so many females suffer is regarded as unimportant, and in many cases unnewsworthy. Because even if females comply with heterosexuality, they still are not safe. It’s just not safe to be female.
My thoughts are to all the women attacked this month, particularly my love to Christine who lost her partner, Mollie. Her murder is sad beyond words.
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ETA: Lincoln Police have now classified the case as a hate crime, and part of a much larger problem. Story copied below in my comment. Thanks to Cathy Brennan for the find.