France | Gay Marriage | News | Paris

Anti-Gay Far Right Activist Commits Suicide on Altar of Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris

A well-known far right activist and historian, Dominigue Venner, shot and killed himself in front of crowds of tourists today at Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, The Independent reports:

VennerMr Venner, a presenter on a Catholic-traditionalist radio station and controversial historian and essayist,  posted an essay on his website earlier in the day calling for "new, spectacular and symbolic actions to shake us out of our sleep, to jolt anaesthetised minds and to reawaken memory of our origins".

His long essay was a tirade against gay marriage but also a warning that the "population of France and Europe" was going to be "replaced" and brought under "Islamist control" and "sharia law".

Mr Venner placed a sealed letter on the altar of the cathedral before shooting himself. His choice of the altar -  associated  with religious marriage ceremonies -appeared to be a symbolic gesture of protest against the law permitting civil gay marriages in France which took effect last weekend.

Venner was 78. The cathedral was evacuated and closed for four hours after the incident, the paper adds:

The rector of Notre Dame, Monsigneur Patrick Jacquin, said that, as far as he was aware, this was the first suicide within the cathedral since it was founded in the 12th century. "We will pray for this man as we pray for so many others who are at their wits' end," he said.

Feed This post's comment feed


  1. Good riddance to bad trash. Appropriate place to do it - and the good news - according to his beliefs, he'll spend eternity in hell (for the suicide). Nice work!

    Posted by: MarkRocks | May 21, 2013 1:17:24 PM

  2. There really is a radical element in France that is off the rails.

    Posted by: Kyle | May 21, 2013 1:21:36 PM

  3. The glass is either half full or half empty depending on your view, it has nothing to do with the external world. In killing himself this man gave his life for nothing more that his viewpoint.

    Posted by: UFFDA | May 21, 2013 1:21:48 PM

  4. What a horrible thing to do in front of a crowd. This is further evidence that these vehemently anti-gay people are mentally ill.

    Posted by: MateoM | May 21, 2013 1:21:55 PM

  5. My guess is that he probably was suffering from a terminal illness and thought he might as well aim for some political effect with his death. I doubt he did this as pure protest alone. It might only have some effect if numerous people did it.

    Hard to know what to say. I pray for the eternal peace of all souls - whatever their political views were. No need to wish hell on this pathetic man.

    Posted by: Mary | May 21, 2013 1:21:58 PM

  6. there's a part of me that i'm in no way proud of that nevertheless hopes this inspires similar actions from his like-minded supporters.

    right-wing anti-gay bigots killing themselves in protest?

    if you refuse to be a decent human being and get educated about realities, and continue to promote prejudice, bigotry, intolerance and ignorance...well.... the best gift you give world culture is your complete removal from it.

    Posted by: LittleKiwi | May 21, 2013 1:22:00 PM

  7. and now according to his precious Catholic dogma his soul is condemned to his hell for all of eternity.

    suicide is forbidden but, as common in almost all things catholic, the church retains the 'right' to make justification possible. their god still forbids it though...

    Posted by: mike/ | May 21, 2013 1:24:57 PM

  8. When is WBC going to follow suit?

    Posted by: JerzeeMike | May 21, 2013 1:25:09 PM

  9. One less looney.

    Posted by: Jon Mitchell | May 21, 2013 1:28:10 PM

  10. No real loss.

    Posted by: Renee | May 21, 2013 1:31:38 PM

  11. This is disgusting.

    If this man committed suicide in private it would be one thing, but to do it in such a public place right n front of people who had no relation to him or his "cause" is beyond the pale.

    I don't wish death on our enemies. I just want them to stop, and leave us alone. They can believe whatever they want to believe -- ust don't pollute the world with their hatred.

    Posted by: David Ehrenstein | May 21, 2013 1:36:27 PM

  12. We may scorn and ridicule, but today is a day of mourning for some of the regular White supremacists on this blog.

    And they don't have to go all the way to Paris to mourn--there are many churches right here in the US they can use...and they can always borrow a gun from David Hagatha Hearne.

    Posted by: Derrick from Philly | May 21, 2013 1:36:40 PM

  13. Uhm...prayer for a suicide? I thought the Catholic Church believed suicide was a sin? What are you going to pray for? That your magic sky figure will make an exception in this case?

    There are a lot of people at their wits' end, monsigneur. Typically they have achieved their wits' end because of poverty, hunger, and all the other problems that come from social injustice... Injustice that your church perpetuates. But rather than open your millenia old coffers to actually do something good for people in need, your choice is to treat them the same as a sinner in the eyes of your pray...and throw them crumbs.

    Posted by: Jay | May 21, 2013 1:37:09 PM

  14. one down...

    Posted by: Mark C. | May 21, 2013 1:39:03 PM

  15. With all due respect; while we might, rightly, loathe the rhetoric and views espoused by some anti-gay people it is abhorrent to take pleasure in any human being killing themselves.

    Suicide is horrific, particularly for the family and loved ones that are left behind and we should not trivialize it because the deceased person concerned held views with which we disagree.

    Posted by: Mundusvultdecipi | May 21, 2013 1:40:40 PM

  16. No vigil for him? Suicide is only a tragedy if it happens to young gays who've been videotaped having sex.

    Posted by: AR | May 21, 2013 1:42:29 PM

  17. Posted this on the FB page, but since a lot of people don't seem to be aware of this guy:
    Venner was a fascist. His suicide was part of a deliberate campaign; he believed sincerely that it would spark a reaction of outrage against gays and the liberalization of France. (It's kind of a similar situation to the American extremists who believe they can start a race war, but without the criminal associations.) It wasn't about the defense of Christianity but the defense of "traditonal" national institutions and symbols. I don't think you can call a person like that disturbed, except to the extent that all terrorists are disturbed. It was a deliberate political assassination; he just chose himself, and I think we can allow ourselves to express satisfaction that he didn't decide to kill innocent civilians instead.

    Posted by: coolbear | May 21, 2013 1:45:24 PM

  18. So that guy killed himself so he could be a martyr for the anti-gay marriage movement?

    What a dumb@$$.

    Posted by: FuryOfFirestorm | May 21, 2013 1:46:49 PM

  19. Tat's messed up. People are crazy.

    Posted by: Lucas H | May 21, 2013 1:49:00 PM

  20. The armchair psychologist in me says that like many rabid homophobes Mr Venner was fighting something in himself, and when he lost the public fight he might have felt he was in danger of losing the private, personal one as well.

    Look at where and how he, a supposedly devout Catholic, chose to kill himself. First off, as others have pointed out, suicide is a mortal sin and he was dooming himself (according to his own beliefs) to Hell. And if he was truly protesting against gay marriage why do it in a church instead of at a government building, when it was the government who passed the legislation? And to kill himself in public, in front of tourists who no doubt included some of the children he and his ilk have claimed they want to "protect"? Hmmmm.

    All of this just goes to show that his brain was a seething can of worms and his actions can't be fully explained by "he was protesting gay marriage." But whatever. It's an interesting riddle but, cold though it may seem, I'm not seeing this as a great loss to the world.

    Posted by: Caliban | May 21, 2013 1:49:52 PM

  21. Yeah, he was likely dying of something else.

    Also, kind of a dipshit. Self-immolation is the method of choice for these protests.

    But I guess that would hurt too much.

    Posted by: Josh | May 21, 2013 1:51:48 PM

  22. It's all Catholic nonsense. More killed in the name of insanity.

    Posted by: LAX/JFK | May 21, 2013 1:55:49 PM

  23. Sending Bryan Fischer two tickets to Paris and a gun ---- you never know!

    Posted by: Joseph | May 21, 2013 1:56:54 PM

  24. I wonder if Westboro Baptist Church will picket his funeral?

    Posted by: Esther Blodgett | May 21, 2013 1:58:37 PM

  25. Can't all the violence just stop,live and let live. We just want to be accepted and given our rights, and the religious right should just go about their business of prayer and whatever in there own little world and leave the rest of humanity alone.

    Posted by: bructer | May 21, 2013 2:01:42 PM

  26. 1 2 3 4 »

Post a comment


« «David McConnell’s 'American Honor Killings: Desire and Rage Among Men': Book Review« «