Husband of Bermudian beaten in hate crime
The husband of a Bermudian man was battered by a thug in an apparent hate crime after a gay pride event in Britain at the weekend.
Neil Carr, a former Berkeley Institute teacher, married to Valentino Tear, said he was heading home from Manchester Pride when a man jumped out of a car and launched an unprovoked attack which left him unconscious and bleeding from a head wound.
Mr Carr said: “I’d had a few drinks at Pride, as you do, and I was with friends and we were just having a good time.
“A car pulled up and I thought it was my taxi.
“I walked towards it and this guy jumped out and bashed my head; literally bounced it off the pavement. He had kicked me to the ground, lifted up my head and smashed the back of my skull on the ground.
“I lost consciousness and came around about 15 minutes later.”
Mr Carr added: “I wasn’t dressed outrageously. I had glitter on my face and a little bit of eye make-up, so I think it was motivated by homophobia.”
Mr Carr, 54, who lives with his husband in Manchester, said a Muslim couple who saw the attack came to his aid.
He added when he regained consciousness, they told him: “You didn’t do anything.”
Mr Carr was taken to Manchester Royal Infirmary, where it was confirmed he had suffered whiplash injuries to his neck.
His head wound was bandaged and he was sent home, but he will need a checkup next week.
Mr Carr said that since the Northern Irish Democratic Unionist Party, which has vetoed same-sex marriage in Northern Ireland since 2015, agreed to support the minority Conservative government after last year’s UK General Election, there had been a spike in hate crimes.
Mr Carr, who taught English literature and maths at the Berkeley Institute between 2003 and 2005, said that intolerance from politicians encouraged bigotry and hate crimes.
He said: “A fish rots from the head down.
“The DUP in the UK has a very similar outlook to the Progressive Labour Party when it comes to marriage equality.
“It is like the politicians don’t seem to understand — when you are not equal in law, it allows these twisted people to feel they have a right to go and beat someone up.”
Mr Tear, a DJ and volunteer in the UK, said he had also been the victim of a hate crime in the UK, but that there are help groups to support people who had suffered discrimination.
He said: “One group, the Anthony Walker Foundation, is specifically designed to protect black, minority and ethnic people against hate crimes.”
Mr Tear added: “We have joined forces with them and we have an LGBT group called Rainbow Noir.
“I am also part of the Facebook group Bermudians in the UK and we have events together.
“We try to interact and there are different issues we deal with from finance and housing to hate crimes.”
Mr Tear said he had spoken on UK radio station Gaydio about LGBT rights in Bermuda, where the Government has launched an appeal to a Supreme Court ruling that legalised same-sex marriage.
He added: “I am often the one turning it around and letting people know this is everywhere and we have to open ourselves to a country regardless of what is happening there.
“Some gays are so unhappy they say they don’t want to come to Bermuda. I salvage what I can of the island’s reputation.”
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