Savage on Thanksgiving lesbian attack: ’2nd Amendment applies to queers, too’

By David Ferguson
Tuesday, November 27, 2012 14:54 EDT
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Mallory Owens via screencap
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In the wake of a vicious attack on a lesbian woman in Alabama, writer and activist Dan Savage reminded LGBT people, “The Second Amendment applies to queers, too.”

Savage spoke to Raw Story about a Thanksgiving Day assault on 23-year-old Mallory Owens, who was severely beaten by her partner’s brother, 18-year-old Travis Hawkins, Jr., in Mobile, Alabama. According to WKRG, Hawkins was upset that Owens was involved with his sister.

“With homophobia, you often see people exonerate their brother or sister and blame their same sex partner for the homosexuality,” he said. “When you see homosexuality as a sickness or an illness or a disease or a sin, you blame the person that’s ‘doing this’ to your relative. Unfortunately there isn’t a Gay Avengers organization that’s going to sweep in and kick their brother’s ass if he loses his mind.”

He continued, “The question to the family should be, ‘Why was he invited?’” Hawkins, Jr. had attacked Owens once before, striking her in the head with a wrench.

“If someone has a history of hitting people in the head with a pipe wrench, they shouldn’t get an invitation to Thanksgiving, or any family event, especially one where alcohol is being served. The question really shouldn’t be directed at the victim. The question should be directed at the violent brother and the family that’s apparently supporting him.”

Finally, Savage offered one piece of holiday advice to LGBT people who might he headed into iffy situations, reminding them that they have a right to protect themselves.

“Hey, if you’re going home and your family is violent and hateful,” he said, “Remember, the Second Amendment applies to queers, too.”

In Mobile, Owens’ mother told WKRG that her daughter’s injuries were so severe as to render her unrecognizable.

“He tried to kill her. He’s lucky he didn’t kill her. She’s lucky to be alive,” said Kristi Taylor of her daughter and Hawkins, Jr. “I didn’t recognize her when I got here. It’s hard to look at her like that.”

Owens was hospitalized with broken ribs and shattered bones in her cheeks and face. Surgeons have implanted multiple metal plates to stabilize the front half of her skull and enable healing.

Hawkins, Jr. was arrested on Sunday on charges of second-degree assault and bonded out that afternoon.

Owens’ sister, Avery Godwin, said, “I want him behind bars for life. He doesn’t need to be out, because if he does he could do this to someone else or he’ll finish it off with my sister.”

Owens, according to WKRG, has no health insurance. Supporters can donate to a fund in her name at any branch of Regions Bank.

Watch video about this story, embedded below via WKRG.com:

David Ferguson
David Ferguson
David Ferguson is an editor at Raw Story. He was previously writer and radio producer in Athens, Georgia, hosting two shows for Georgia Public Broadcasting and blogging at Firedoglake.com and elsewhere. He is currently working on a book.
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