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Gay couple subjected to anti-gay abuse on London train

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  1. Slow news day today? Not that I’m making light of this but this kind of thing happens all the time. Still I hope the B**t**ds get what they deserve!

    1. *hope the b**t**d gets what he deserves. (it would of sounded horrible if I didn’t make this correction)

    2. But just because it happens all the time doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be reported. in fact it’s much better that it is, and that it’s seen that the police will make some effort to take action. Not so terribly long ago that wouldn’t have been the case.

    3. These are some of the people behind the anti gay hate,

  2. Doesn’t surprise me at all, sadly. This sort of abuse used to be so commonplace (almost to be expected, really) and I’m glad to see it’s being reported in the media more frequently, as well as being investigated by Crimestoppers and the British Transport Police. Not so long ago this wouldn’t have even been reported to the police out of fear, so good on them for reporting it.

    These people don’t realise what damage they are doing, or how offensive they are being. Most of them probably wouldn’t dream of sitting there insulting a person’s race or religion, but when it comes to sexual orientation, suddenly they think that’s acceptable. :-(

    1. Reported in the media? Try to find it in other papers…

      1. Its in the Islington Gazette too.

  3. is this the kind of thing that is covered by the public order act section 5, the one that some people want to get rid of? If so what other option would gay people and others have to turn to, apart from a shouting at eachother if the law was changed?

    1. @John

      Certainly could be covered by section 5 or section 4a of the public order act and aggravated by hatred as under section 146 of the Criminal Justice Act 2003.

      I personally think the Public Order Act is a good piece of legislation, although I concede some clarification on some definitions might be helpful. We should keep this law to protect all who encounter abuse regardless of the motivation.

    2. A similar thing happened to me on a bus in the summer and the man was found guilty of Section 4A public disorder – though at the same time the magistrates were asked to take into account the hate crime aspect when sentencing ( which when considered can be used to push up scentincing, so the gov has added this aspect).

      There is the alternative such as the Equality Act 2010 (race,religion,sex, orientation etc ) but this is generally for repeated issues and not usually strong enough for one off incidences to prosecute.

      And if we shouted in the street as well, then technically we could also be arrested for public disorder or affray ( I think ). I hope Section 4 isn’t under threat, it helped me out.

  4. Yes London, land of a thousand welcomes to everyone…except the gay community.

    1. Which of course would explain why so many gay people choose to live here.

      One swallow does not a summer make.

      1. You’ve obviously had your pink tinted blinkers on. Every other day on Pink News there’s a report of anti gay abuse directed towards members of the LGBT community. Explain?

        1. Yes, and the most recent other report was in Oxfordshire, though you chose not to remark on that but focused on London, a city of more than 7m people. Explanation enough?

          1. Rehan, agreed.

            It is unfair to generalise and intinate that London is a bad place to be for many gay men and women.

            Homophobic violence whether reported or unreported occurs everywhere, not just in London.

            We should also get a sense of proportion here. London is a massive city and so is much mroe likely to have gay men as it is homophobic idiots roaming around.

            Hey, I’m a Londoner born and bred. I’ve been lucky perhaps but only ever really encoutnered homophobi once..and that was mild compared to this.

            So, say what you will by all means but I think it’s rather close-minded of you.

          2. Quite, Mendirin. It’s also worth noting that London, for all its pockets of bigotry, has more by way of gay communities (I think it’s absurd to speak of the gay community) and reasonably contented gay individuals than anywhere else in the UK.

            One unfortunate incident in a city of this size is not an indicator of some general decline. Indeed, the fact that it’s been reported and is being followed up by the BTP suggests the reverse.

        2. @Ian Dour

          The fear of crime from that reported in the media is not a necessarily accurate portrayal of the reality encountered by people on the streets. Yes, these incidents occur – but that does not mean every gay man or lesbian experiences this form of abuse, even occasionally.

      2. Nice one – spot on.

    2. I have always felt very welcome in London and felt accepted for who I am as a gay man in London

      1. Ditto. More so than any other part of the UK I’ve been in.

    3. That’s not true. At least not for the 12 years I have lived here. As awful as this is, I have found London overwhelmingly welcoming to gay people.

  5. blue polo shirt and blue jeans…so could be half of thames estuary then?!

    1. Unfortunately, the police can only give the descriptions the wtnesses provide …

      But if someone was on that particular train or station etc they may have recognised them from the description …

  6. It’s not just London- when my partner and myself lived together in the Welsh valleys we were subjected to abuse on a daily basis. We only had to go up the park with our og and we got called “Faggots” and “Gay *unts” and “Bent Freaks” on a daily basis. The trouble with this kind of abuse is that it happens spontaneously and suddenly and rapidly develops into missile-throwing and then physical attack. The local police at that time just didn’t want to know.

  7. Only according to BTP, they dont say what he two men were doing, other then sitting.

    Really should give the whole account no just small parts.

    1. What makes you so certain (other than your evident wish to believe that the gay men were being somehow provocative and therefore ‘deserving’ of the abuse) that it isn’t the whole account?

    2. Paula Thomas 20 Oct 2011, 12:23pm

      And even if they were having a kiss and a cuddle does that make the blindest bit of difference?

    3. I hardly think they were naked and in full swing. If they were holding hands, kissing or cuddling then GOOD. I’m guessing they pay their tax and have every right to act as straight couples do.

      However two of them? They should have said something back.

      1. I was subject to a transphobic attack, the police were awesome.
        But the police officer gave me some advice on the quiet.

        He said ” do not retaliate, verbally or physically ” as this will mean a shorter sentence for the perpetrator and possibly a custodial sentence for myself, as the courts do not look favourably on retaliation, even though you were provoked.

        1. @Andy Q

          I agree that its highly unlikely the guys were naked and in a full on passionate encounter on a train. I disagree about reacting – both from a personal safety perspective and because Melanie is right that if there is a retaliation this can, rightly or wrongly, be used against the victim in court.

    4. Well done Neal. May be the were kissing… does that make your eyes water? If yes, you may want to book a place on Virgin Galatic NOW!

    5. I suspect if the BTP genuinely felt the conduct of the two men was such that it had caused a public nuisance and thus necessitated some form of response then they would not have issued a media appeal.

      In any case even *if* (and I suspect it unlikely) the men had been acting inappropriately that *never* justifies homophobic harassment

    6. Jock S. Trap 6 Nov 2011, 10:48am

      Do people need to be doing something ‘other than sitting’ to be abused by the like of you and your ilk?

  8. I think what we need is a confidence building training for gay and lesbian people if we are to really solve these insults. I wouldnt flee the train and I will actually annoy the bugger more by kissing my partner more… Before you ask, I have done it in a Central line train in 2007 one morning with my then bf. For those wanting to know what they couple was doing, we held hands and some idiot got pissed in the early morning rush-hour. My Ex was scared, but I thought we should face the real dance. I kissed him and the idiot and his cohorts got more pissed but saw that the look in my eyes wont take any nonsense.

    Time we get bold and challenge things where we can rather than keep complaining. No such battle has been won by fleeing. It was until the likes of Rosa Park that America changed attitudes towards racism; it was until the likes of Emmeline Pankhurst that women got the votes…

    I hope the idiot is identified soon.

    Wake up LGBT!!!

    1. That’s true, and good for you, but sometimes you can bite off more than you can chew in these situations, much depends on how many other people there are around and how likely they are to be sympathetic and, not least, how threatening the potential attacker is being. (I’m thinking of that poor chap a few years ago who was stabbed to death on a night bus fro protesting against someone who was flicking chips at his girlfriend.)

      1. You’re right Rehan. I am not suggesting we should fight blind. Commonsense should prevail. But I think if we train more on how to respond to these situations, a positive dent would be made if not a complete change.

        1. Agreed.

        2. @Godwyns O

          It needs to be carefully judged as to how to respond. Some situations a carefully worded but assertive rebuttal will resolve the situation. Some situations that will just provoke more abuse and/or violence.

          I agree informed common sense should prevail – but that may require the training that you imply in your comments to both recognise when it is too risky to respond and if responding how to do so, and how to protect yourself.

          Nonetheless, I would still encourage anyone encountering such behaviour to contact the police for two reasons – i) its unacceptable and these people should be held to account by the criminal justice system and ii) the police and society need to understand the true level of hate crime against LGBT people and if we dont tell the police, how will they know?

          1. Stu, obviously its peeps like you and Rehan that I want to know… haha!

            Yes, the reason I mentioned trianing is that then people are equipped on how to act and when it is safe to do so. “There is time for everything…” says the wise preacher.

            But where someone is not sure what to do, the best to do will be to walk away indeed.

            Reporting to police is one of the tool, being able to respond when it is safe to do so, is another and responding in measure is another. Sometimes, a wrong level of response may make it worse.

            And yes, it is unacceptable. But like one other comments I read on this raised, most homophobes do it in the comfort that gay people, especially men, are too weak & afraid to respond. Whether it is homophobia, racism or plain crime, response should only happen when it is safe to.

            May be if we have such training, we can increase that awareness.

      2. You pussy the moment you stop living for yourself and think about the gay peoplewho need us to set the tone you’ll not be afraid to stop people taking the piss out of you

        1. Meow!

          I take your point – I’d like to think I’d challenge homophobia if I encountered it in similar circumstances, but in all honesty I can’t be sure – but on the other hand it’s not setting much of a tone if you’re dead, is it?

          1. Better to live one day like a lion than 100 years like a sheep

          2. Baaa, humbug. I’d still rather not be a dead lion, specially one deceased at the ripe old age of 1 day.

            How old are you, then?

          3. Old enough to know a life lived in fearis not worth living

          4. You must be so fierce James! Or have you just been watching the disney lion king re-release in 3D. How about living your whole life like a human being? There are gay lions, but they are locked in a cage in a zoo.

          5. Wuss! :-) But between leonine courage and fear there’s a whole spectrum of ways of being, including unapologetic confidence without foolhardiness.

          6. Kyle you can pretend we are not at war and cower or fight for ypur rights you uncle tom puusyface

          7. Better alive to find and challenge again, then unable to act because you are dead or in intensive care because unwise decisions were taken when confronted by someone who should that it would have been better judged to have walked away from.

          8. Im not saying go out in a pink tutu. If someone challenges your right to live you have to accept that challenge. There are things worse than death

          9. One wonders whether James! is all talk, or whether he lives the way he expects others to.

          10. Suck my hairy balls bitch

        2. With all due respect would YOu challange it James? Or perhaps there could be a little bravado here.

          If you were surrounded by four or more people screaming homophobic abuse at you and getting physical what would you do?

          You really have no right to accuse anyone of being a pussy.

          1. My motto is one of you is coming with me. I would always fight what woyld you do get on your knees amd beg?

          2. Ill add inmy misspent youth i had 2 men try to mug me when i gave them a beating one said to the other i thought you said they dont fight back. I had a good laugh

    2. I didn’t read in the article above, that the couple involved fled anywhere, or lacked such confidence.

      1. haha! the word ‘flee’ was not used. But it said they got off the train at Canonbury and called the BTP… did you read that bit?

        1. Had they intended to get off at Canonbury – that was unclear … although I accept it seems they chose to walk away – which sometimes is the sensible thing to do – although I agree I would like to think I would be assertive and robust in the face of abuse and aggression, I would not necessarily guarantee it – personal safety (for me) trumps public image, my image can be resolved at a later date (maybe in court)

          1. Its not about public image its about ensuring they never dream about doing that again to you or anyone else.

        2. Maybe the people involved got off the train becaise they had reached their destination? It is, after all, traditional to disembark when one has reached a destination.

          As well as making a host of assumptions, you talk with such assurance, sitting behind a screen, without the need to assess the risk of whether the person you are confronting is armed and dangerous.

          1. There was no assumptions. I made a remark as to one of the things we need to do!

            Secondly, I did not say they ran away, and you are not correct they reached their destination either… so both of us are assuming and as such, neither of us are right. Think fairly.

            We will deal with the facts we have not the entire assumption you rake up. My initial comment was general: “What we (gay) people need is a training on Confidence Building…” did not say about the 2 guys in question only.

            There are times to walk out, but there are also time to stand up against these ills. And I dont think safety should be ignored at such times. However, some -and most- times, nobody fights/supports you until you take the step yourself.

          2. I’m not assuming anything, but asking ‘maybe’?
            in balanced response to your – unfounded, and possibly unfair – supposition that rather than ‘getting off’, the couple concerned ‘fled’, after at least six stops.

    3. Like your style, me and my partner got abuse once just for getting on a bus and we weren’t even holding hands or kissing – just sat there. Guess If were going to get abuse anyhow when we comply with the ‘norm’ we may as well protest. Seems like things have been on the go slow since Harvey Milk.

  9. Might be an idea to change the photo to a London Overground train (the current is a London Underground train). If not perhaps remove it altogether, as it confuses people.

    1. Agreed – the German-made London Overground trains are much safer, with colour CCTV cameras in every carriage, alarm points near each door, and safety officers are always nearby.

    2. You trainspotter

      1. You really are out for a fight today aren’t you?

        1. Shut your hole

          1. James!, perpetually angry aren’t you? Here’s a tip: insulting people is not generally the best way to get them to see your point of view

          2. Fk off

        2. David Myers 21 Oct 2011, 10:53am

          Please folk, don’t feed the troll it just makes them more hungry for attention.

      2. Why, you jealous wee thing you! Some of us have a hobby. Whats yours?

      3. In this situation, it pays to be a trainspotter: on an Overground train, you can see the whole way down the train and move along 8 carriages without going through any doors. And you can speak to the driver. If you get on a national rail train, you can’t.

  10. You do NOT have a RIGHT not to be offended. Yes, it would lovely if everyone could be polite and accepting but you do not use the criminal law to suppress dissenting opinions. This is an exceptionally dangerous and illiberal path to go down and unless the man was threatening violence, calling the police is a pathetic act of cowardice.

    1. So a black person facing someone calling them subhuman or jungle bunnies, or a Jew facing anti-Semitic abuse is also being a pathetic coward by involving the police?

      Opinions are all very well if they’ve been invited.

      1. Yes. If you disagree with what somebody is saying to you, you challenge them on it. You explain why they are wrong. You do not call the police to have them put in prison for having the audacity to hold a different point of view.

        1. Depends on how that different point of view is addressed towards you … if it is simply a difference of opinion then it would hardly be in the public interest to pursue this in court (a factor the police and CPS need to consider) …. If however there is repeated barracking and offensive language is used then maybe the involvement of the police is justified …

        2. I simply don’t agree, Martin. If someone forces their point of view on me, uninvited, it is not a dialogue; and if it’s negative it’s abuse. There is absolutely no reason why people in a civil society should have to put up with it.

          1. So if somebody says “I really hate your hairstyle” then that similarly qualifies as abuse?

            The point here is that the law is elevating the socially acceptable opinion (embracing homosexuality) as virtuous and is punishing those who voice their disagreement.

            (Maybe you remember the “LGBT outreach officer” who arrested a street preacher for saying homosexuality was a sin)

          2. So if someone comes up to me and says “You n1ggers have no place in this country, you should go back to your jungles” you think I should talk to them about their attitude? Maybe the clue lies in your own use of the term ‘socially acceptable.’

          3. Martin andstu are a pair of cnuts

          4. @James!

            You are entitled to your opinion about me …

            But given that I am standing up for the couple in this article and believe strongly in dealing with people who are homophobic and bigoted then I wonder what crazy thing is going through your head when you decide to abuse me ….

            Nonetheless, thick skin and don’t care what you personally think about me …

          5. James you don’t add much to the debate you merely pull off this tough guy arttitude (which I don’t buy for a sec if you where really such a tough guy then you wouldn’t need to constantly tell people who you don’t know how tough you are) or abuse people. its pathetic.

    2. Fak of if you direct a comment at me i dont like ill mess you up

      1. How very grown up …

        1. I know its liberating to know a definate response

      2. Spanner1960 20 Oct 2011, 3:06pm

        If your brain was made of dynamite and it went off, it wouldn’t even mess up your hairdo.

        1. Wow the clunkiest comeback ever

          1. Spanner1960 20 Oct 2011, 9:18pm

            Nah. You beat me to it:
            James! 20 Oct 2011, 8:18pm
            Fk off

      3. Its toys out of the pram day today with you, isn’t it? How very juvenile. Can you hold an adult, sensible conversation without resorting to threats?

        Empty vessels make the most noise!

    3. Well, English law believes differently …

      First of all the Public Order Act has been in place since 1986 and has statutorily criminalised causing “harassment, alarm or distress through threatening, abusive or insulting words or behaviour”.

      Secondly, common law has had an arrest power for breach of the peace in these circumstances for centuries …

      So, whether you find it appropriate or not, one does have a right to not be offended …

      1. Yes, I know you have a legal right not to be offended, otherwise the police would rightly have told them to grow up. But such a law is utterly illiberal and undermines the principle of equality before the law. It holds that whether your words are illegal or not is entirely dependent on who you say them to!

        Your common law argument is specious given that the full force of the criminal law could during the majority of that time be brought to bear on practising homosexuals.

        The law should not be misappropriated to stifle dissent or protect people from being upset.

        1. Spanner1960 20 Oct 2011, 3:11pm

          “You have a legal right not to be offended”
          Huh? Get real.

          1. I think you have missed the point of my comment, Spanner.

        2. @Martin

          I disagree,

          Some people will not be told to grow up and need action to prevent them from being harassing. If you study section 5 of the public order act then you will see that for an arrest to occur they must be warned by a police officer to discontinue their offensive conduct – thus if they persist in offending and then harassing the victims, it is justifiable that society takes a stand against deliberately offending and upsetting people. There has to be common sense applied, as well (as far as the criminal justice system is concerned) a test that it is in the public interest to pursue the matter. Thus, “I dont like your haircut” is unlikely to see action – whereas racist or homophobic harassment should.

          As for common law being specious. I was not merely directing this law to gay people, but applying the law to the whole of society (which is how it is framed) and thus the common law argument is correct and justified.

          Indeed the law should not stifle dissent, but ….

        3. … equally the law should protect from harassment and distress from bullying and intentional insulting behaviour.

      2. If somebody sat on the tube wearing a T-shirt which read “homosexuality is morally repulsive” (which, for the record, I don’t think it is) and somebody took offence and started abusing him, would all of the people voting down my comments support his right to call the police? I think we know the answer.

        You might say “but the T-shirt invites comment!”, but to the homophobe, open displays of homosexuality might invite comment.

        1. “Open displays”? For goodness’ sake, they weren’t copulating in the carriage (at least as far as I’ve heard, anyway)!

    4. Well it’s hardly “dissenting opinion” – they weren’t discussing politics or literature. It was just abuse. Why do you think abuse is justified?

      1. I did not say that abuse was “justified”. I said it should be illegal.

        If the man hounded them on the way home after they politely asked him to stop then that would be harassment, whether the abuse was homophobic or whether he was calling them ugly or insulting their clothes.

        1. should NOT* egad

    5. I love people like you. Of course if this happen to you, I expect you would have shaken the mans hand and commened him on his freedom of speech. NO if you were in a threatening sitution you would have called the police too, I bet. And besides guy and gals that stick up to this sort of thing, by calling the polcie, benefit you in the end any way. By making it more aware. SO really you should be thanking them, no deriding the sitution. NO go and read the daily mail. I am sure you will feel more at home there!

      1. There is nothing in the article to suggest that the man was threatening.

        If people are homophobic or abusive, I ignore them. We used to live in a free country and I have no intention of playing a part in the sickening erosion of liberty for which you are all cheerleading.

        1. Well, good for you. But there’s no reason why other people should have to put up with what even the police call ‘offensive and intimidating’ behaviour because of the fear (misguided, to my mind) that liberty’s being eroded.

        2. Personally, I think leaving bigotry and offensive behaviour unchallenged (whether at the time, in a legal arena or by some other method) is as damaging to society as the behaviour of the bigot. Failure to address it by reporting it to the police in almost tacitly regarding it as acceptable conduct. Wrong, wrong, wrong.

        3. Jock S. Trap 6 Nov 2011, 10:47am

          Never mind dear!!

      2. Not me i would have shnked the bitch

        1. Yep pulled that 2 foot uzi you always carry around and just shot up the whole train maybe even dramatically jump the train just as it explodes…… or was that a different work of fiction?

    6. We have a right not to be abused, threatened or intimidated in public when we go about our daily lives. A tirade of unsollicited insults is abuse. The case in question has nothing to do with being offended.

      Otherwise you may as well classify the sudden, unsollicited movement of my fist in your direction as freedom of expression. It would certainly settle the argument.

    7. Jock S. Trap 6 Nov 2011, 10:46am

      Guess we should all be nasty and bigotted like you then eh? Dull, Dull, Dull.

  11. I had a similar thing happen to my gf and I in Leicester Square a few months back really wasn’t a nice experience.

    1. It was a Saturday at aroud 2pm, it happened in the middle of loads of people the guy was literally following us yelling abuse no one said or did anything to help at all. It would help if other people at least said something or tried to help rather than ignoring the whole situation.

  12. Peter & Michael 20 Oct 2011, 4:13pm

    Unfortunately this sort of abuse will be more forthcoming due to the laws of free speech currently being discussed in Parliament. Just, this week we were told by a member of Cheshire Police, that, hurling homophobic abuse is no different than calling a policeman a ‘copper’.

    1. Except that calling someone a copper isn’t offensive.

      Cop the noun is almost certainly a shortening of copper, which in turn derives from cop the verb. The London police were called bobbies, after Sir Robert Peel who advocated the creation of the Metropolitan Police Force in 1828. Copper as slang for policeman is first found in print in 1846, according to the Oxford English Dictionary. The most likely explanation is that it comes from the verb “to cop” meaning to seize, capture, or snatch, dating from just over a century earlier (1704).

      If you thought the term pig arose in the 1960s, you’re in for a surprise. The OED cites an 1811 reference to a “pig” as a Bow Street Runner–the early police force, named after the location of their headquarters, before Sir Robert Peel and the Metropolitan Police Force (see above.) Before that, the term “pig” had been used as early as the mid-1500s to refer to a person who is heartily disliked.

      The usage was probably confined to the criminal classes until the 1960s, when it was taken up by protestors. False explanations for the term involve the gas masks worn by the riot police in that era, or the pigs in charge of George Orwell’s Animal Farm.

      While police officers usually don’t mind being called “cops,” they aren’t usually fond of the term “pig.” A policeman’s lot is not an ‘appy one.

      1. David Waite 20 Oct 2011, 8:29pm

        “Cop” is the shortened version of “copper” but “copper” is not a gerund of “to cop.” There is actually speculation (but no hard evidence) that “to cop a plea” is actually derived from the by then widely-used street term for the police. “Copper” was Bow Street slang for Sir Robert’s employees because of the (copper coloured) distinctive brass buttons of their original tunics. Newspaper accounts of the time tell of the common cry, in the middle of an affray, “The coppers are coming!” in warning to the battlers from interested onlookers when Sir Robert Peel’s uniformed employees arrived at the melee scene. “Bobby” was also used as you pointed out, and was originally considered a pejorative for both Sir Robert and his employees.

    2. Even in this day and age l still get weekly abuse from the public doing my promotions job on the streets of central London.Mainly from pissed up guys in their twenties,bum bandit being the last one hurled aggressively at me to my face.While his fellow ravers proceeded to sway down towards a traffic bollard that was used as a phallic symbol much to the amusement of the rest of the gang. I’m always magically transported back to my youth and the daily battles on the horrors of the school playground, and l feel like that helpless teenager all over again. I’m now in my fourties, my haven’t we come a long way,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,sadly not quite far enough ;-(

    3. When I was a police officer, copper was the least offensive thing I was called …

      If a police officer genuinely believes that homophobic abuse either does not matter or only matters marginally, then he/she are in the wrong job

  13. Nawal Husnoo 20 Oct 2011, 5:36pm

    It’s interesting that nobody ever records these abuses on their phones…

    I’d like to say I would, but last time my boyfriend and I were verbally abused on high street in Exeter, the guy was shouting in Jamaican (or some similar sounding language), so we had no idea what he was on about, other than he singled us out of nowhere as we were holding hands.

    I couldn’t stop laughing, so I didn’t think of recording him.

  14. soapbubblequeen 20 Oct 2011, 5:47pm

    I once travelled from Ealing Broadway tube into central London for a night out with a friend. We were chatting when two Irish traveller children (about 9 or 10 yrs old) asked me if I was gay. I told them yes. They told me they thought I was ‘disgusting’ and ‘being gay was a sin, and I’d go to hell’, crossing themselves( just joking). My fiery, black diva girlfriend challenged them and told them they were being prejudiced bigots. They shut up after that. I brushed it off because they were just kids, but I think if an adult abused me, and caught me on a bad day, there would be hell to pay. People should learn to stand up for themselves. Unless there’s a group of them course, in which case ignore them. In fact, it’s probably the best thing to do, because those types hate being ignored.

  15. Next time they shall stay on board and pull the passenger alarm requesting police presence at the next station

    1. Nawal Husnoo 20 Oct 2011, 8:00pm

      I wondered if that would be acceptable…what exactly are the laws on homophobic abuse like this, and does it constitute a proper reason for pulling the emergency alarm?

      I mean, you are allowed to call 999 if a crime is being committed and the perpetrator is still on the scene…

      Any ideas?

      1. I would argue if you feel in danger pulling the emergency alarm is appropriate


        Not only is it a criminal offence (Section 4A), you cannot know how dangerous or armed the abuser is.

        If you do not report it, you give the assailant encouragement to repeat the offence, and others will suffer. You have a duty to society at large, not just to yourself, to seek justice.

  16. This has happened to me as well – two terrifying drunk men started talking loudly about how “disgusting” I was before getting right up in my face. This was the Piccadilly line a few months back.

  17. A little perspective can help people get a thicker skin and broader back. My partner of 14 years and I get abused EVERY SINGLE DAY once we step outside our door. We live in the Caribbean. We don’t have to broadcast we are gay, people KNOW. It’s a small island. A dreadlocked black chic and butch looking white chick living together, going to the market together, walking their dog together will eventually stand out. Cries of: “Fire BUN!”, “ZAMI!” and all kinds of nasty sexually aggressive and violent threats come our way. And guess what? We cannot do ANYTHING legally about it. Homosexuality is still criminal here. But we fight back. I have learned to shout eloquent, silencing, humiliating comebacks. I have learned to walk like I can handle myself in a scrap. I have learned to laugh raucously at the more ridiculous comments. I have learned to lift my finger like I am going to call down the power of Mother Kali on anyone who dares threaten my family, my peace, my happiness. Take your power back people! FIGHT and stop running crying at the slightest objection or insult. Count your blessings as well.

    1. That’s the right thing to do in your situation, but here in the UK, where we have a just rule of law, high-resolution colour CCTV on the carriages, and local media to take up the story (this story was repeated verbatim from the Islington Gazette), the civilised thing to do is to report it to the police, rather than starting a fight.

      It is odd that people on here have concluded that, reporting an incident to the police is a sign of a thin skin or weakness. I would argue that the reverse is true.

      1. Absoutely it is a strong thing to report hate crime to the police

        It also helps the police know the reality of hate crime, as at the moment there is tacit evidence there is significant under reporting but its difficult to know the level of that and therefore for police to know the level of appropriate resource to allocate to the issues.

        1. Stu, you hit the nail on the head.

  18. This abuse is indeed horrible, but it is probably the next battle in acceptance. The LGBT rights movement has been too focused on laws and has tended to downplay crime and abuse. This attitude (typical of the left in many ways) needs to now change. Laws can only do so much. Many countries have progressive laws on the topic but massive social backlashes against gay people…:(

  19. For the people saying fight back if your found in a similar situation I understand where there coming from and from an overall LGBT aspect yes.

    When your a skinny little gay boy who doesnt fight and is faced with a bunch of larger lout chavs on a bus its a different story. Theres no shame in keeping yourself safe, it makes you no less proud about who you are.

    There should be group protests staged everytime something like this happens in London, after all it is the capital and it seems on the rise. Just simple like group of gays going to the same place or getting on the same journey and showing public affection and unity. Powers in numbers.

  20. Why is it that a lot of media are too scared to say the truth about the amount of hate crimes committed by black people towards the gay community. I am not being racist. It is well known that the black community in this country is more homophobic than alot of other communities. Research would tell you that. Now i am not saying that all black people are homophobic. I know for a fact that it is a lie. But i do think though that the Government needs to address the homophobia in the black community and also the asian community in this country.

    1. yes I agree entirely, my partner and I have been abused on a bus in south London by a ranting black man, and the reaction of others on the bus, mostly black, they thought it was very amusing. We are quite prepared to fight, but he sensibly did not get off his backside. Such a shame that a minority group that has experienced discrimination over centuries, can so easily turn it on another minority group, have we learned nothing?

  21. I travel on the tube all the time..morning, afternoon and night. I´ve never seen any type of discrimination, and I say this is no way to justify the bigoted actions of some fool. I think some wider perspective is required – thicker skin perhaps (re: sisters in the Carribean). I´ve lived in America and Spain and I can honestly say if you think we have it rough here at home, don´t bother venturing abroad!

    1. Jock S. Trap 6 Nov 2011, 10:45am

      Yeah that must be the answer…..

  22. While it is wonderful there is recourse in places like the UK for gays and lesbians who are subjected to bigoted, hateful, abusive words, I worry that the ROOT cause, i.e. the reason these people feel so emboldened to make those comments is not being addressed on a face to face level that legislation cannot address. There is a reason most people would never just come out and verbally abuse a black person or Muslim etc. They fear reprisal, not from the police but THE PERSON right then and there. Gays and lesbians still remain the one group people feel bold enough to bully because they think we won’t fight back right then and there. They think we are sissies, silenced by some kind of inner shame and unable to stand up for ourselves. “Fierce!” must also apply to our attitude, not just our fashion.

  23. Jock S. Trap 6 Nov 2011, 10:43am

    Absolute disgrace that we have feral people abusing others in such a way.

    Hope they are found and punished properly.

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