Barbra Streisand | Crime | Louisiana | News

Louisiana Gay Men's Trip To Streisand Flick Ends In Assault

JamisonPolice in Lafayette, LA, arrested 37-year old Joseph Menard Jr. after he allegedly assaulted four gay men at a recent showing of the Barbra Streisand and Seth Rogan flick Guilt Trip.

Walt Jamison says he and his boyfriend and two other gay men were settling into the showing when Menard, sitting behind them with his children, began spewing anti-gay invectives and then, when asked to be quiet by them and another patron, attacked them.

The Advertiser has more:

The men took their seats dur­ing the previews, Jamison said, and almost immediately a man in the row behind them said, "Oh great," and called them a derogatory name aimed at their sex­ual preference.

When one of the four said, "Ex­cuse me?" Men­ard "stood up and leaned over us and started scream­ing hate slurs pep­pered with profanities," in front of his own child and wife, Jamison said.

A woman about three rows in front stood and asked Menard to stop because she had chil­dren with her, but, according to Jamison, Menard insulted her and told her to sit down.

Menard "sat down and stood back up and popped my partner in the back of the head," said Jamison, adding that he was also struck by Menard.

Before the police arrived, Menard and his family left The Grand in their SUV. Police [pursued] them and arrested Menard on the simple battery charges.

Menard has been charged with simple assault, while his wife was also charged with resisting arrest.

Two very different family outings ruined by the same thing: ignorance and hate.

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  1. "Two very different family outings ruined by the same thing: ignorance and hate."

    There was most likely some hate, but I think it's increasingly tough to characterize some of these cases as 'ignorance'.

    I don't know the history of this alleged assailant, but I suspect he is someone with some rather deep-seated personal issues that are brought out by seeing gay people enjoying themselves (at least as much as they can watching Guilt Trip)

    Posted by: Nat | Jan 17, 2013 8:32:12 AM

  2. He was probably already pissed that his wife dragged him to see Barbra.

    Posted by: Mawm | Jan 17, 2013 8:45:37 AM

  3. It actually IS ignorance.

    Menard was ignorant of the fact that he'd be chased down and arrested for assault. He was ignorant of the fact that gay people are not going to have a lack of response, simply sit back and take it these days. He was ignorant of the fact that he was in the wrong.

    And his name is out there for all to see, it's no longer a secret that Joe Menard Jr. is a bigoted, violent nutcase.

    Posted by: johnny | Jan 17, 2013 8:52:39 AM

  4. @Johnny are you certain that is the perpetrator's facebook page?? The picture does not look like him. And his wife is listed as Danell, while the article identifies her as Carissa.

    It would highly irresponsible of you to put this guy's info out there unless you happen to have something to back up your claim.

    Posted by: Lars | Jan 17, 2013 9:19:35 AM

  5. I know if I didn't want to be around gay people I would definitely seek refuge at a Barbra Streisand movie.

    Posted by: Me | Jan 17, 2013 9:25:55 AM

  6. That's not the perp's FB page because the perp is much skinnier, and younger, with a different wife. However they are in the same family so you can let him know what you think about what occurred here anyway.

    The reality is it is still VERY unsafe to be gay the farther south and middle you go. It's incredibly unsafe, in fact. Hate crimes do happen everywhere but bashings like this occur far more frequently on average in conservative states and lower-income areas. Unfortunately in the South you can't even live in your own house, walk to the store or go to the theater without being harassed for who you are.

    Sometimes people in............a Chelsea or WEHO underestimate just how bad things are elsewhere. What's good is to see people fighting back and no longer being forced into silence. That's the only way to force change.

    Posted by: Francis | Jan 17, 2013 9:30:07 AM

  7. You Towleroad guys better be damn careful handing out peoples' contact info. That's what got you in trouble before. (Especially if you wind up pulling a Spike Lee and giving out the address of the wrong Zimmermans).

    Posted by: Yupp | Jan 17, 2013 9:32:09 AM

  8. Because he's in "the same family" it's okay to go after him ?? There are people in my family I despise, so why should I suffer for what THEY might do?

    Posted by: Yupp | Jan 17, 2013 9:34:43 AM

  9. "arrested Menard on the simple battery charges".

    Pardon me? This is clearly a hate crime. If Menard had attacked 4 black men that way it would be clear to anyone. Welcome to the homophobic double standard of the south where homophobia is not hate but "disagreement". Outrageous.

    Posted by: Peter M. | Jan 17, 2013 9:44:54 AM

  10. What great family values to teach your children.

    Posted by: Brent | Jan 17, 2013 9:59:38 AM

  11. @Francis - I certainly do not want to minimize this assault. It is an insult to us all. However, your response would lead one to believe that to be open and public about one's sexual preference in the south is dangerous. For myself and my partner of nearly 20 years, it has not been menacing. We live our lives openly here as a couple and have been active in civic and city governance for over 12 years now. We run a business that interacts with the public. Yes, bigots are here, as they are anywhere.

    It is not as fraught with peril as it once was. It is a good place to live, visit, and do business. We have learned much from the gay rights movement as accomplished elsewhere. These men who were attacked have done the right thing by making this an issue publicly at some concern for their own safety. In doing so, the bigots will push back to try to preserve their power, but it to will fade. But only when there is a local face that puts to the grave the old "gay menace" stereotype.

    Posted by: Scott | Jan 17, 2013 10:10:18 AM

  12. One bigot assaults four. Please tell me that one of the gay men punched the f*cker back.

    Posted by: andrew | Jan 17, 2013 10:24:23 AM

  13. His jail inmates will be sure to tame his homophobic ass down...

    Posted by: landon | Jan 17, 2013 10:27:32 AM

  14. I'm sorry, Scott, but there are simply too many assaults and attacks to be ignored. Virtually all of the latest reported gay bashings have been from Baltimore/DC southward. I should actually say "conservative states" since that's really where the hate crimes happen on an regular basis, and inner-city communities in all more or less socially conservative areas. HOWEVER there are some very good places in the South, some towns that you wouldn't think of as accepting that very much are, like Research Triangle, Fort Lauderdale and Savannah, Florida. Orlando is one of the gayest cities in the US. There are unexpected places such as Boston where there are a lot of hate assaults, or parts of Los Angeles. But on average, it is conservative states in general that have the worst hate crime numbers, and the South is largely conservative. Cities such as Seattle, Columbus, Cambridge, San Jose, WEHO and others don't have high hate crime rates, especially in relation to the number of gays within these cities. NYC has a hate crime rate comparable to DC and Atlanta with far more gay people within the city. Especially in Manhattan and Queens, the hate crime rates are low in comparison to the number of gays within the city.

    The numbers are the numbers. Hate crimes aren't even classified as hate crimes in these conservative areas and LGBT people don't trust the police in these places and often don't speak out when they are harassed or bashed. Police won't document them, as was done here. But I will say things are getting better everywhere, slowly but surely. Hate is everywhere undoubtedly. I respect you so much, Scott, and I respect this couple and everyone standing up, and speaking out, and not allowing fear drive them in the closet. But we can't ignore the obvious: There are certain communities and areas that are violently anti-gay.

    Posted by: Francis | Jan 17, 2013 10:46:29 AM

  15. Oops, I meant to say Savannah, Georgia. Which quite frankly is much more safe than Atlanta is.

    I don't blame these men for not getting violent. We're not violent people, by and large. Homophobes know that. What's important is to carry mace, a stun gun, brass knuckles, something where if your put in a physical situation, you can defend yourself without getting into a scrap. Awareness of hateful incidents such as these are what make change.

    Posted by: Francis | Jan 17, 2013 10:48:59 AM

  16. Andrew, I'd like to believe that they knew enough about being men not to punch a guy back, no matter how douchey, in front of his kids.

    Posted by: luminum | Jan 17, 2013 10:49:18 AM

  17. @ Yupp,

    The Towleroad post simply cited the news story that ran in the Lafayette newspaper, "The Daily Advertiser," on its online version, "" Towleroad, like any blog site, has every right to link to other media stories, as long as they quote their source. From your comment:

    "You Towleroad guys better be damn careful handing out peoples' contact info."

    Well, that does sound threatening, doesn't it? You must be pretty important. Actually, I think *you* had better be damn careful about what you post or you could easily make a jackass out of yourself.

    Posted by: Artie_in_Lauderdale | Jan 17, 2013 10:49:30 AM

  18. @ Scott,

    Thank you for acknowledging the progress in gay rights that has come about in the South during the last decades. No thoughtful person will claim otherwise. Personally, I've always admired Howard Dean's electoral strategy: never write off a single state. The 2008 election proved that Howard Dean was right and Rahm Emanuel was wrong: Obama carried North Carolina and Virginia, both of which are Southern states.

    Posted by: Artie_in_Lauderdale | Jan 17, 2013 10:57:42 AM

  19. Lol, Kiwi isnt even in this thread.

    Also, what the hell guys? You can't make a point and make a gross oversimplification. Type out your point. Read it back. Then, read it back as if someone else wrote it and you want to break their argument apart. Remove/reword any things that no longer work.

    Posted by: Fensox | Jan 17, 2013 11:00:49 AM

  20. @ Yupp,

    You IDIOT! If you've ever read any of the posts on this blog, you'd realize that Kiwi and I are two completely different posters. In fact, during many debates between Kiwi and Rick, I've sometimes argued on behalf of an occasional point that RICK makes, although I've also occasionally agreed with a point that Kiwi makes. If you don't believe me, ask Kiwi.

    Yupp, did your nurse drop you on your head when you were an infant? Could that account for your illogical conclusions?

    Posted by: Artie_in_Lauderdale | Jan 17, 2013 11:02:26 AM

  21. Kiwi and Artie are two clear different people.

    Yupp, yes, a whole lot of us are prepared to throw down when necessary and will beat a cowardly bigot(s) down. But we don't throw down for the sake of fighting. Gay men in general are less bluntly aggressive. When provoked, you better be careful. We will react when we need to react. You can call it a stereotype if you please since I didn't say gay men can't fight.

    Posted by: Francis | Jan 17, 2013 11:11:20 AM

  22. Yupp = Sockpuppet.

    Don't feed the troll.

    Posted by: Polyboy | Jan 17, 2013 11:12:36 AM

  23. Yupp, it is impossible that Artie and Kiwi could be the same person. They are both too sincere to try such subtle deception. And, Lord knows, Kiwi is too emotional and firey to attempt Artie's more relaxed style of writing.

    When Kiwi does a different persona on the blog it is obvious, and it is for effect. He does a parody of Rick that is ruthless, often hilarious...and justified.

    Posted by: Derrick from Philly | Jan 17, 2013 11:26:50 AM

  24. Yupp claims that my comment offended gay conservatives. I only claimed that Towleroad (or any other blog site) has every right to link to other stories in newspapers, etc. How does that offend gay conservatives? When Yupp threatens the bloggers at Towleroad and tells them that they'd better be "damn careful"… or else, Yupp is not being a gay conservative. He's just making a jackass of himself.

    Posted by: Artie_in_Lauderdale | Jan 17, 2013 11:28:31 AM

  25. A break for some levity in a comment thread that has become downright contentious: without my glasses I read the "li" in the word "flick" as a "u", and I was seriously scratching my head for a few seconds as to what a "Streisand f**k*" is.

    Posted by: Stefan | Jan 17, 2013 11:29:05 AM

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