1. brenda says

    I really believe in my heart and with all the passion within me that anyone who commits any kind of anti-gay violence, however small, even burn marks to someone’s wrists, deserves the most severe and painful retribution in return. I am so tired of the “gay panic” or “dyke deserved it” defenses. The man who did this to this poor young man deserves to be lit afire himself (his whole body) so that he knows what it feels like to be burnt and maimed for life. I swear with everything in me, if I am touched in any way I will go off and kill someone. I am fed up with anti-gay violence.

  2. sparks says

    As barbaric as this sounds, I would really like for the attacker to be found and punished — with a cattle brand, held across his forehead for exactly as long as he pressed that piece of searing metal on Quinn’s wrist.

  3. Francis says

    Internalized religious homophobia+drunk=this.

    I am fed up with anti-gay violence too. I know if I’m ever in that situation, I will defend myself to the death if I have to. But, violence really isn’t the answer. The answer is to stop the hate that causes incidents like this in the first place. Unfortunately, since the majority of hate crimes happen in the South and the culture of homophobia in the south and in most communities where most hate crimes attackers are from, it is going to take a cultural sea change and total change in mentality in these communities for hate crimes to ever be prevented.

  4. Francis says

    What is that object that Quinn was burned with, anyway? And what type of person keeps something so burning hot to do so much damage? It’s like the attacker did it intentionally. UNC is a progressive school in general so I’m sure that they didn’t report about it publicly immediately because they were gathering information themselves.

    As we saw with the homophobia directed at Justin Robinette at Duke, the incident with the college Republicans at SMU, Tyler Clementi and the hate crime at Queens College a few months back, just because a kid is in college doesn’t mean he/she isn’t crazy, and doesn’t mean that person is an enlightened individual. Hate has no bounds. Incidents like this, isolated as they may be, serve as a purpose that education is needed on all levels, at all times. What’s unfortunate here is that the attacker doesn’t have a long-term injury, only Quinn does. Maybe that will change once/if the attacker is caught and is in prison.

  5. Brent says

    How bizarre. As Francis says above, who walks around with something that hot? Or has the abiility to make something that hot on the spur of the moment?

  6. Francis says

    True, Brent. It doesn’t look like a cigarette burn. And it doesn’t seem like it was a huge object. So that’s weird. Which is why the importance of the attacker being found is even more important, because obviously he is insane enough to do something like this again.

  7. Thomasina says

    @Francis; Brent: The question of what he was burned with, or how, also struck me as odd–until I remembered that the two places in the US that you are most likely to find branding equipment are 1) a farm that breeds livestock, and 2) a university with a Greek system. Just an observation–I don’t have enough information to claim that the assailant was a fraternity member.

  8. kodiak says

    After he freed himself by punching the mother#@$!% in the face,
    he shoulda grabbed the object and branded the guy. So random, so stupid. In all honesty, I feel the same as Brenda, someone comes after me, it’s gonna be to the death. I’m not putting up with this anymore. And yes, violence sucks big time, but maybe the news media needs some stories about bashers getting seriously beaten and some permanent damage done to them. I’m talking war. But then I think of the video of the little kid who was bullied and fought back and dumped his attacker on his head. The bully came on tv and said he was the victim. Sheesh. What if gay people went and randomly attacked people they perceived as straight? Hate crime laws are a step in the right direction because they do take some meat out of the defense perps use when they say they killed the dude because he wanted to have sex with them, but it’s a drop in the bucket, really. We need more. But what??

  9. Cryo says

    Oh God. Honestly I flinched when I read down the whole article. I know that lots of people would think that this is a part of daily criminal happenings, but this scarily reminds me of that branding Nazis did on Jewish people.

    This is not trivial. Imagine some random dude doing that to you any other day.

  10. Brent says

    I hope I’m wrong, but I have a suspicious feeling about this. It doesn’t make sense that someone could walk around with such a hot object or create something so hot on the spur of the moment. Then there is the missing friend, whose name the victim doesn’t know and asks to please come forward to verify the incident.

    We had a situation in my area not long ago where a black woman’s car was covered with racist words. It turned out she did it herself as a cry for attention.

    Like I said, I hope I’m wrong. I’ll be following this story and if there is indeed an attacker I hope he’s severely punished.

  11. Francis says

    Kodiak, what is needed is a complete repudiation of homophobia and unconditional acceptance of gay people and homosexuality. Or at least to the point where anti-gay attitudes are not mainstream. They still are mainstream enough to the point people feel justified to be anti-gay. That’s the big issue here.

    Especially when you have kids like this, who appears to be a brainwashed religious nut. They feel completely justified in the moment to commit a hate crime. In their eyes, we aren’t humans and we aren’t worthy of human decency. Of course, all of this irrational hate is caused by insecurity, paranoia and ignorance. The way to stop hate crimes is to change the culture that creates incidents like this to ever occur in the first place.

  12. mike128 says

    The politicians who use anti-gay rhetoric to drum up votes are responsible for the violence. As are the conservative media who exploit homophobia for ratings. This is just awful.

    @Brent: I dont get why you would assume that someone would burn himself to the extent that he can’t use his thumb or finger? Really?

  13. Francis says

    Looking through the comments on this incident on some of the NC news sites, you can see why someone like this would do something like this. Really shocking behavior. The majority of the people either say Quinn did it to himself, that hate crime status is “unfair” to straight whites, or say he had it coming to him. Even many of the supportive comments are crazy in nature. It makes you really realize just how far we have to go in certain areas of this country.

  14. Bryan says

    The comments here are depressing… Embracing the righteous moral imperative of the self designated victim apparently inspires, among other mistakes, enormous gullibility.

    Mr. Matney’s story is literally incredible. Imagine yourself undergoing the assault he describes. A lone assailant approaches you holding a freshly heated (and rapidly cooling) tool in one hand and, and with his other hand, somehow manages to grab your wrist and restrain you long enough to brand you? And the single witness to this atrocity wanders off, unconcerned?

    Mr. Matney has literalized the persecution he’s suffered at the hands of Christofascists and mutilated himself in a desperate bid to draw attention to his rage and pain. This is sad, but easy enough to understand. Who here doesn’t know exactly how he feels? Unfortunately, turning himself into a poster child reduces the chances of his getting the help he needs.

    But what’s truly creepy is the way so many of us are so invested in our identity as victims that we refuse to recognize such an obvious scam for what it is. Like Mr. Matney, we really need the Christians to burn us at the stake. (Note, for example, that none of the coverage will in any way identify this crime as the inevitable outcome of certain religious beliefs.)

    What’s driving us crazy is that American Christianists have declared a holy war against 5-10% of the country’s citizens, among whom children and young people are the primary casualties, and no one ever publicly names it as such. Every day, the press covers one “patriot” or another declaring a Haraam against LGBTQ people, files it under “everyone has an opinion,” and then looks away

    There is a widespread agreement in the media that religion may never be criticized as such. Even when clerics torture and rape children, the focus is on the individual. The role the institution’s principles play in the crime is simply ignored, as though the religious association of the perpetrators were a trivial coincidence.

    It’s enough to drive you crazy. What Mr. Matney has done is wrong, but I find it very easy to understand why he did it. He’s simply made real what most of us feel ever day of our lives.

  15. Nathan says

    Hold your horses, it’s a lot easier than you would think for someone to do this. I’ve seen a guy brand himself with nothing more than 30 seconds, a butane lighter and a leather stencil. It is entirely believable that this guy was gay bashed, and I don’t see why anyone would distrust his story.

  16. says

    @BRYAN: I hope we’re wrong that this is self-inflicted, though it being an attack is horrible enough. But what you say about religion, its affects, and the shameful media coverage is so true and rarely pointed out so clearly and concisely. Thank you.

    I guess it’s up to us then to call the media on it, over and over.

  17. Yeek says

    Yeah, I’m skeptical too. There’s been a few similar cases (reported here!) that have turned out to be self-inflicted injuries. Some concerns I have:

    1) Victim has perfectly symmetrical burn marks on his left wrist. I think it’s likely that the burn marks would be ragged and irregular if he was struggling furiously. Also, most people are right handed, and therefore most self-inflicted arm injuries are on the left side.

    2) There’s a supposed witness who can’t be found, which seems really, really weird.

    Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof. I’d like to hear more from this young man before I decide to back him up. It won’t take much: a simple statement from that witness would be a start.

  18. kodiak says

    I posted earlier, before the hoax came clear, and I feel stupid for falling for this crap. But, it also shows how fed up I am with anti gay violence. I need to be a little less hot headed, but it’s tough when
    you live in a gay negative society where hateful invective is hurled
    at you everyday by lawmakers, pundits, tv hosts, and the general public.

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