See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient with it until it receives the early and the late rains. - James 5:7

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Gays Stonewalled in Texas?

Texas Rangers don't tell.
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I came across the story on Ad Dominum. Not one major news agency seems to have picked up the story - which is why I doubted it - but here it is:
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"Seven customers were arrested for public intoxication at a Fort Worth, Texas, gay bar shortly after midnight Sunday.
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Angry gay activists said the incident mimicked the famous police raid on the Stonewall Inn gay bar in New York’s Greenwich Village exactly 40 years earlier.

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Fort Worth police released a statement saying they conducted a routine “alcohol beverage code inspection,” not a raid, at the Rainbow Lounge, a gay club that opened for business less than a month ago."
- Source
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Gay news sites are reporting the incident and subsequent protests, but not one major news outlet outside local affiliates has covered it. That is weird on so many levels. The mainstream media is usually very vocal in supporting gay rights, so why the hush?
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I'm not sure what the standards of morality in Fort Worth Texas are, I do seem to recall certain areas in Texas were 'dry' - that is public consumption of alcohol was banned, so the excuse police used "jus checkin' licker inspekshuns" might fly with some - but it shor duz soun luk hairassin' ta me.
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“I’ve worked in gay bars in four different counties in Texas,” Rainbow Lounge bouncer Justin McCarty said in the CBS 11 News story. “I’ve never seen anything this aggressive.” - Source
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If it sounds like harassment, is it?
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"Chad Cox, a bartender for another Fort Worth gay bar called Best Friends, said he was not aware of any complaints of police mistreatment of gay bar patrons in his club or in other gay establishments in Fort Worth.
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He said he has worked as a bartender in mostly straight bars in Fort Worth over the past 20 years and has routinely observed public intoxication arrests.

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“In Texas you can get a PI in a bar,” he said. “You can get a PI walking from a bar to your car. If the cops believe that you’re drunk, they can give it to you any time. That’s Texas.”
- Source
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One man is reportedly in serious condition after being roughed up by police and thrown to the ground, causing a head injury. In all a total of 7 people were arrested at the gay bar, although there was no 'round-up' or closing of the facility as in the case of the historic Stonewall incident. Included in the arrests were intoxicated persons from at least two other straight bars.
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I had friends from Texas who told me (several years ago) this type of thing did take place in various counties, although I never realized it continued to exist. Apparently bar owners used to pay off the cops, and as one commenter on a gay site noted, the raid could have been because the pay-offs weren't made - all speculation and hearsay of course.
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It will be interesting to see what comes of this. My friend at Ad Dominum suggests this is proof the hate crime legislation is needed. Maybe. It could also be that certain power structures such as some local police departments are corrupt and in need of reform. Reportedly Fort Worth's city council seats a gay council member, therefore one would assume if gays have representation in local government, discrimination is not an issue.
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All in all - the story seems surreal in this day and age - it's just a bar. Southerners are weird though - remember a few years back - maybe still - Boss Hog-type State Patrol guys would just stop you for nothing in redneck country?
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Just trying to be fair here.

5 comments:

  1. Could be they were actually drunk and disorderly. And since the truth is not as newsworthy, no coverage.

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  2. RJ - I'm thinking the same thing.

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  3. "Southerners are weird though - remember a few years back - maybe still - Boss Hog-type State Patrol guys would just stop you for nothing in redneck country?"

    Come on now, Terry--that's unnecessary.

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  4. Oh my goodness - I have Southern readers. My apologies - I wtch too much TV.

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  5. haha, yes dear I'm from South Carolina :-)
    I understand though...the only stuff you ever see about Southerners is how inbred and stupid they are on tv. If I had a dollar for every time I've had someone quote Beverly Hillbillies at me, I'd be a rich woman! The worst of it was when I was living in Australia, which I absolutely didn't expect.

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