Mathieu, Gregoire, a 21-year-old gay man from Trois-Rivières, Quebec, was attacked on Friday at the Festival Western de St-Tite in Quebec’s Mauricie region.
Groggier says he was trying to defuse a situation in which a man had made a catcall at his sister but the situation escalated after the man misunderstood him. His face was then hit 6 times with a beer bottle.
“I looked at him and said ‘you’re super hot’, said Grégoire. “The guy thought I was saying he was drunk, and that I was insulting him.”
Grégoire used the French word “chaud” which means “hot”, but could also be taken to mean “drunk”. He said his sister tried to calm the situation by telling the man that Grégoire was giving him a compliment.
Grégoire said that’s when he was hit in the face six times with an empty beer bottle. The last thing he remembered was hearing the man utter a homophobic slur.
Wrote Gregoire on Facebook (translated):
This is the face of homophobia! In Saint-TITE, Friday night, a guy decided it was funny to beat up a gay man with an empty beer bottle!…The first blow was to my face, and 6 others followed… I regained consciousness crying front of my father-in-law, totally disoriented, not understanding where I was. I spent the night in the hospital, I had X-Rays and by chance I don’t have anything broken. Friday night, I was attacked because I’m gay! Welcome to 2015.
Thank you to all my friends to have been there from the beginning! I realized at the end of the week how much love I’m surrounded by!
The country festival attracts a reported 600,000 people over 10 days, according to the Montreal Gazette. Two separate and unrelated attacks at this year’s festival also turned violent, causing head injuries and putting one man in a coma.