Saturday, June 2, 2012


IIn March, 24-year-old store clerk and gay activist Daniel Zamudio was attacked in a public park in Santiago, Chile, beaten intermittently for hours, carved with swastikas, and left for dead. He finally got to a hospital, struggled for three weeks, and then died.
 Observers are calling him the Chilean Matthew Shepard, because the brutal murder has launched a national discussion about LGBT rights. An antidiscrimination law that has been languishing for seven years is even speeding through the National Congress despite conservative lawmakers warning it will lead to same-sex marriage, among other horrors.

On Easter Sunday, the Nobel prize-winning writer, Mario Vargas Llosa, spoke out in an op-ed called “Hunting Gays.” He did more than the usual handwringing denunciation of violence; he published an indictment of all Latin America, whose countries, “without a single exception,” he wrote, repress, persecute, and marginalize queers “with the open and massively enthusiastic support of the general public.”

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