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Gay Senior Citizen Brutally Beaten in Detroit Hate Attack Dies

Anthos2_1Andrew Anthos, 72, the gay senior citizen who waged a nearly-two-decade campaign to have the Michigan capitol dome lit in red, white, and blue, died yesterday from injuries sustained in a brutal hate attack.

Anthos, whom his niece says had a lifelong disability, was riding a bus home and a stranger, apparently offended that Anthos was singing, asked Anthos if he was gay, followed him off a bus, and beat him with a pipe. Anthos spent the last few days in a coma, paralyzed from the neck down, before dying yesterday.

Cold-blooded murder.

Police have not found the attackers. The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force has offered to pay for his funeral.

For background, see...
Gay Senior Victim of Detroit Hate Attack Given Last Rites [tr]
Gay Senior Citizen Patriot Clings to Life After Attack [tr]
72-Year-Old Detroit Man Paralyzed After Brutal Anti-Gay Attack [tr]

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  1. My heart breaks for him and his family. It's incredibly ironic that Andrew Anthos loved this country so much for its democracy and freedom, and yet was killed by the continually brewing hate and intolerance of its citizens.

    Andy, what can we do to make a difference here? Is there any way in writing to his family and the state? I'm so outraged and heart broken. :(

    Posted by: Cory | Feb 24, 2007 11:26:38 AM

  2. this is truly heartfelt

    Posted by: poodle | Feb 24, 2007 11:33:26 AM

  3. Tragic.

    Posted by: Jack! | Feb 24, 2007 11:43:04 AM

  4. I think that it would be totally fitting for the capitol to final put up the red, white, and blue lights in his honor. He truly loved his country even when it couldn't extend him the same courtesy.

    Posted by: linc | Feb 24, 2007 11:57:53 AM

  5. I am heart broken ..What is it going to take for humans to realize that we are not a threat. I would really like to send a letter to his family.It really affected me in so many ways to hear that he was killed by ignorance! My heart goes out to his family and friends!

    Posted by: Fabrizio | Feb 24, 2007 12:23:08 PM

  6. This is so sad. I hope they find the animals that did this and lock them up for good.

    Posted by: peterparker | Feb 24, 2007 1:07:42 PM

  7. Lighting the dome would be a very fitting tribute to this man. He lobbyed for that for 2 decades and now we're at war — who could possibly so no?

    I'll contribute to any fund that sees this accomplished.

    Posted by: Daniel | Feb 24, 2007 1:22:41 PM

  8. Very sad. But I hope he had a lot of happiness in his life too. (Still no description of the attacker from any Detroit news source...? I don't get it).

    Posted by: Joe T. | Feb 24, 2007 1:56:01 PM

  9. Thanks, Andy, for following through on this story. I keep thinking of how this obscene act ties into the story about how a high school sophomore in neighboring Indiana ignited a small firestorm just by suggesting in her school's paper that gays are, guess what, human, too, and urged her peers to treat us as such. The local paper, hardly an organ of "the gay rights agenda," admirably nailed the principal and school board rep for claiming all they wanted was "balance" in her opinion piece, showing what models of learning they are by missing that an opinion piece never requires it.

    And what would "balance" be in any case? "DON'T treat gays as human beings"? As absurd as that sounds, that's exactly what their feelings are, even though they might never have the courage to come as close to admiting it as sports fool Tim Hardaway has or another, very different high school girl, the one with the black heart whose parents, less than two hours' drive from Sodom by the Bay, are suing the school over, details aside, the idea that she should not be allowed to spray her homohating religious beliefs through the school like a cat marks its territory with urine.

    But such examples of the ANTIgay agenda exist much closer to the scene of Mr. Athos' murder. Just this month, a Michigan court ruled that the ban of same sex marriage voters passed two yeas ago applies to domestic partner benefits, too. It might be a while, if ever, before we find out if such public demonization was in the mind of his killer, but there's no question the spirit of it was, and that, for all our gains, America's bloodstream still flows with the toxins monsters like James Dobson and Jerry Falwell and Rick Santorum and, yes, George Bush, have been injected into it for years.

    Finally, once again the National Gay & Lesbian Task Force, by offering to pay for his funeral, demonstrate that they are one of the few national political activist groups that we can be hopeful about—and should support with our time and money. I guess the Human Rights Champagne Fund was too busy trying to get Reichen and Lance to give back their awards.

    Posted by: Leland | Feb 24, 2007 2:38:38 PM

  10. Leland: I'd still say it's just Isaiah Washington or Tim Hardaway's comments that would incite the Detroit murder, but I don't even blame them: it's just the attacker's own psychotic nature (in a city where murder is not uncommon, anyway).

    Posted by: Joe T. | Feb 24, 2007 2:52:26 PM

  11. My God, what can you say about this? It is beyond sickening. My heart goes out to his family.

    Posted by: atheist | Feb 24, 2007 4:53:03 PM

  12. This is a heartbreaking story.

    Andy -- help us connect to this. How can we help the family and community take care of this man's memory?

    Posted by: Becks07 | Feb 24, 2007 6:16:06 PM

  13. um... Atheist, what do you mean when you say "My God..."?

    Posted by: Neil | Feb 24, 2007 9:36:32 PM

  14. You know, I've hated Mao Tse-tung my whole life (my extended family in China suffered tremendous atrocities during the Cultural Revolution); but on this sad sad occasion when a gentle loving senior citizen was beaten to death with a pipe, the only thing that comes to mind is this quote by Chairman Mao:

    "Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun.”

    Times like this, I wanna take a gun and blast
    that homophobic fucker to smithereens. It's the only kind of power they would ever understand.

    Posted by: just sayin' | Feb 24, 2007 9:51:08 PM

  15. Again, I ask...where's the coverage of this on national news? Enough with goddamned Britney Spears and Anna Nicole Smith, this is important! This could open up the eyes of people who believe the Matthew Shepard murder was an "isolated incident and hasn't happened for years, so what are they gays still complaining about?"

    Posted by: FanGirlHater | Feb 24, 2007 10:58:29 PM

  16. the obsession with britney and anna and the like is called the dumbing down of america.

    Posted by: pollyanna | Feb 25, 2007 1:50:51 AM

  17. um... Atheist, what do you mean when you say "My God..."?
    um...absolutely nothing Neil. Jesus! You see how insidious god is?? Even us atheists need to guard such inappropriate invocation ;-)

    Posted by: atheist | Feb 25, 2007 10:35:06 AM

  18. should read "...guard against such inappropriate invocation". Duh.

    Posted by: atheist | Feb 25, 2007 1:41:51 PM


    How do we help this family????

    Posted by: Becks07 | Feb 25, 2007 2:03:45 PM

  20. As saddened as I am by all this, I am also reminded of how much the GAY MALE community values youth and youthful appearances over the maturity and experience of our elders.

    I urge all of us to take some time and get to know the graying survivors among us and remember how much easier it is today to be openly gay and that we have the actions of our elders to thank for it. Sometimes those actions people cost jobs, and sometimes they cost people their lives. As true as this is today, it was even more prevalent in the past.

    While it's easier to be openly gay today, it can still carry a price. We see that with the crap spewing from Hardaway and his ilk, and then we see the senseless murder of this man. Everyone who is out today makes it easier for others to do the same.

    Thank you, Andrew Anthos, and thanks to your friends, too.

    Posted by: tjc | Feb 25, 2007 8:03:20 PM

  21. TJC : Another unfortunate thing is that the Anthos case will never get as much publicity as Matthew Shepard from gay activists because Shepard (young, handsome, angelic-looking) is more of a poster boy for a cause than Anthos (older, ordinary-looking, black and/or Hispanic), though why was either one's life more valuable than the other? (Though I'm not criticizing the gay community alone, since the straight world does the same thing re. poster children).

    Posted by: Joe T. | Feb 25, 2007 9:02:53 PM

  22. TJC and Joe T. those thoughts are not ones of just the gay community but the whole community.

    I completely agree with your observation that gay people are disconnected from other generations of gays. I think gay people are disconnected from each other and their history. It's a huge problem. Book publishers rarely release gay history books because they don't sell. In turn that part of history is untold or lost.

    The death of a young citizen is almost always going to get more coverage than an older citizen unfortunately.

    Posted by: Jack! | Feb 26, 2007 2:41:29 AM

  23. I know what you guys are saying is probably true, but it also works on a case by case...Case in point: both Andrew Anthos' life and death have got plenty to interest the press (and even Hollywood), and I think that instead of being defeated about the press not covering this maybe we can do our part to bring it to their attention?

    ie: I recall that what brought maximum attention to the Yale's Bakers Dozen homophobic bashing in January was posters on here contacting the media and city officials left and right; and thanks to Dan Noyes (a particularly determined journalist whom I considered a 'hero' in that context) the story reached the mayor of the SF Gavin Newsom.

    To keep shining a light on this story, there are a few things we can do..a couple I suggest:

    -We need to have addresses of media and city officials in Michigan for us to contact, so if anyone can locate some that would be a great start.

    -It's also primordial we do something to organize fund for the lighting of the Dome, as Daniel and Becks07 brilliantly suggested. I think it would be a fitting tribute to Andrew's lifelong dream which he never had the chance to see through unfortunately. And symbolically, it would serve as a reminder for the whole city on the dangers of hate, and I'm sure he would want his brutal death to be turned into a positive for the youth. - Though I'm mostly broke I'd personally be willing to contribute money to this fund.

    Btw Andy, we had an address to contact Andrew Anthos's family in the other thread, but it's not there anymore. If it's still ok to use it can you repost it please? Thanks!

    Posted by: Da | Feb 26, 2007 9:39:40 AM

  24. If you'd like to help Andrew's family or send condolences, you can send mail to:

    Family of Andrew Anthos
    c/o Triangle Foundation
    19641 West 7 Mile Rd.
    Detroit, MI 48219

    Our Director of Victims' Services and Executive Director are working directly with the family, arranging Andrew's funeral, etc.

    Thank you!

    Posted by: Dawn Wolfe | Feb 26, 2007 4:51:02 PM

  25. Thanks so much for the info Dawn, and for the great work you guys & gals are doing at Michigan's Triangle.

    All the best!

    Posted by: Da | Feb 26, 2007 8:53:21 PM

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