Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Assault on gay teen in Colorado

Last Thursday, in Pueblo, Colorado (an hour south of Colorado Springs), a 15-year-old openly gay student, Anthony Hergesheimer, was attacked by six classmates while walking home from school. He was beaten and some bones were broken in his face. They called him a fag, hitting him with a full can of lysol (I know, odd — a can of lysol being used now as a weapon).

Today he underwent facial and nose surgery to repair the damage, so please keep him in your thoughts and prayers for a very fast recovery.

What I'm more concerned about, though, is his recovery emotionally, although he is confident that most of his other classmates will be accepting. I think it's got to have some impact emotionally (hey, it did to me and I'm two hours away, safe in my house, and don't have to worry much about how cruel some kids can be), and I hope that his friends and the gay community in Pueblo will shower him with love and support.

It's sad to me that this stuff happens. These kids don't get this from nowhere. They get it from their family, from society, from people who think that homosexuality is on the same level as being a rapist or a murderer.

But Anthony's mom is different. She said, "I'm very upset. Yeah, my son is gay. But that shouldn't matter. He should be proud of who he is."

With that kind of love and support, perhaps he really can fly through this and be OK.

"You shouldn't be afraid to be who you are. Of course there will be people who won't agree with you," he said. "But you shouldn't be scared to be who you are."

Good on ya, Anthony. Here's to a speedy recovery and a wonderful life full of people who love you.


  1. I've started 15 comments or so, now, and deleted them all. I just don't know what to say, or where to begin... I just hope he'll be ok, and that the kids who did this will realise what they've done and come 'round.

  2. I want a mom like his. My mom does not know I am gay, she still thinks I am exgay, my beliefs have changed in the last 2 years and I am afraid to tell her, I dont know if she is safe. Ya know?

  3. Hi Christine,
    I drove home last night late listening to your words and couldn't help but weep. In a college class I recently was assigned to read and watch "Angels in America" (if you haven't seen it, ya gotta!!) I am a Christian woman in a Christ-centered, yet moderately liberal, artistic and socially-concerned community in Boulder...a very safe and loving place. (just to give a little background on me) Anyway, this play by Tony Kushner has really gotten into my subconscious, and I have been really 'inside' it for a couple of weeks now... been on a journey toward understanding my thinking about homosexuality, God's thinking and feelings about it. And have been so pierced by grief for what the church has done to these individuals (to you), so angered by what the Reagan administration did to gay AIDS victims in the 80s...that when your impassioned voice came on the radio and called for us as believers to simply LOVE, rather than being so preoccupied with winning a 'moral argument' I couldn't help but weep. I wept the 20 minutes home in the dark...for all the suffering and isolation gay people endure each day. It was a series on KRKS Denver Christian Station. (I usually get so fed up with Christian radio saying the same old things that I rarely listen. I am so glad I tuned in last night.) Your message was the first Christian message about the homosexual struggle within and without the church that has ever resonated with me. So, thanks, and may God bless you and your journey! I will continue to 'tune in' to your blog and walk along with prayers and thoughts go out to you.