On August 18, Lauri Carleton, a devoted supporter of the LGBTQ2S+ community and the proprietor of a clothes boutique in Cedar Glen, California, was brutally killed. Her offense? fluttering a Pride flag in front of her store. The assailant, who was eventually fatally shot by sheriff’s deputies, had posted anti-LGBTQ2S+ propaganda on social media and had called Carleton homophobic before killing her.
At least 15 transgender and gender non-conforming people have been killed so far in 2023
This small hamlet west of Los Angeles was shocked and in amazement, but there was also resentment there, especially among the LGBTQ2S+ community.
However, this heinous hate crime against an ally was not an isolated incident. At least 15 transgender and gender non-conforming people have been killed so far in 2023, with trans women of color making up the majority of the victims.
In a report from Workers World, the mass shootings at Club Q in Colorado Springs, Colorado, in 2022 and Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida, in 2016 both fit into a pattern of homophobic and transphobic violence. In comparison to cisgendered heterosexuals, members of the LGBTQ2S+ community are twice as likely to become the victim of a hate crime.
The Human Rights Campaign, a moderate civil rights organization, has announced that it has formally proclaimed a state of emergency for LGBTQ+ individuals in the United States due to the catastrophic circumstances. According to HRC, this year has seen an unprecedented and deadly uptick in legislative attacks against LGBTQ+ people in state legislatures.
Increase in hate crimes must be seen in this context
The wave of prejudiced laws is to blame for the terrible deaths of Carleton, transgender and gender non-conforming individuals, as well as other LGBTQ2S+ members and allies. The increase in hate crimes must be seen in this context.
But what lies at the heart of these several initiatives, which include “Don’t say gay” legislation as well as measures banning the use of bathrooms and care for youngsters that is gender affirming, among other things? The proposals are being promoted by right-wing Republicans, some of whom are open fascists. Did they suddenly materialize out of thin air?
The capitalist class’s extreme right wing is exactly that—a wing of the class. They are merely the most severe example of the anti-LGBTQ2S+ hatred that is endemic to class society’s patriarchal value system.
In actuality, what narrowed the scope of acceptable self-expression was the growth of private property, male-dominated families, and class divisions, as Leslie Feinberg argued in Transgender Liberation, a movement whose time has come in 1992. The antithesis of what had been natural was asserted, REPORTS from Workers.
We need to abolish the capitalist system that gives rise to hate crimes against members of the LGBTQ2S+ community and supporters like Lauri Carleton if we want to put an end to them.