Australia: Man who shouted he would ‘eradicate all gays’ ordered to take out apology ad for gay activist
A man from Sydney has been ordered to take out a newspaper advert and publicly apologise to an LGBT rights activist for screaming that he would “eradicate all gays” in a street.
Danny Manias, 34, followed LGBT activist Simon Margan, down Oxford Street in August 2010, while Margan put up pro-equal marriage posters.
The tribunal found that he shouted “I am going to eradicate all gays from Oxford Street”. The tribunal went on to find that his shouts represented homosexual vilification, and ordered him to take out the quarter page ad in Sydney’s Star Tribune.
“He appeared to be keeping pace with me even when I stopped to put up a poster which slowed me down, compared with the pace of the ordinary pedestrians,” said Mr Margan in a statement to the Administrative Decision Tribunal.
“Towards the corner of Oxford Street and Brisbane Street he became fully audible to me.
“He yelled: ‘I am going to eradicate all gays from Oxford Street!’ and ‘Do not worry I am doing good work!’,” he continued. Manias went on to shout: “There are wicked things taking place on Oxford Street!”
The apology in the paper must include the phrase: “I acknowledge that the words that I used vilified homosexual men in breach of the NSW Anti-Discrimination Act 1977. The aim of this act is to promote tolerance, understanding and acceptance in the community.”
As well as taking out the advert, Manias has been ordered to pay Mr Margan AUD$1000 (£580).
The same tribunal, however, found that the fact that the activist was assaulted by the same man less than a week later, did not amount to vilification.
On 9 August 2010, Manias kicked Mr Margan in the head and punched him in the face.
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“I tried to move backwards, but his foot contacted with the base of my eye socket,” Mr Margan said. “I felt immediate pain and fell to the ground.”
Mr Margan suffered from a fractured eye socket which has continued to affect his vision.
Resulting from the second incident, Manias was charged with five assault offences, and was sentenced to 18 months in prison.
The tribunal ruled, however; that the attack did not constitute vilification because it did not incite hatred towards gay men.
“At the time when he committed the five assaults for which he was convicted on his plea of guilty, Mr Manias said nothing that might have encouraged onlookers to view favourably what he was doing or that might in any other way prompt them to have negative feelings towards homosexual people,” the three-member tribunal said.
“He said nothing, indeed, to indicate that he believed his victims to have been homosexual, or that it was on account of their homosexuality that he attacked them.”