They are meeting on Sunday afternoon. It is likely that during the week they have it more complicated. After all, there are eight. If they want to see each other together, it has to be Sunday afternoon, when the woman is with the kids and they let you have some quiet time. I’m going down to the bar, he will have told her, and she will not have asked him for more explanations. Sunday afternoon, when the empty hours weigh more than ever on another and rumble until they make him go crazy against the walls of his empty life. The intercom rings. Get off, we’ve all met together. On Sunday afternoon, when there is no game today and tomorrow gigs, someone else will have said. And bring this or that, who will surely have a good time with us. Because they are going to have a good time, that’s for sure. All eight together.
They have been planning it for a long time. Something like this is not improvised. You have to draw up a precise plan. It’s not like those who go out to party and the night gets out of hand, no. This takes weeks in the kitchen. It started with an innocent comment at the bar, they no longer remember when or why. Something about those fags. That I am already fucked up, that they even come out in the soup, damn it, that you can’t put on a series or a movie without getting two turkeys napping each other, how fucking disgusting. Who said it? Nobody remembers it and it doesn’t matter either, because everyone around them nodded, it’s just fine, if in the end the weirdos are going to be us. And the thing would surely have stayed there if it were not for the fact that those who agreed were not only the friends who shared beer in that bar, but they agreed with them day after day, gathering after gathering, interview after interview, on TV, in the radio, on Twitter (see what that has said) and on WhatsApp (see what has sent me which).
One of them was surely outraged when they told him that their five-year-old son wanted to organize sexual workshops in his school, that they were going to go to ‘drag queens’ to class to tell him that it did not have to be a boy, that they wanted to convert them all in fags, that’s what they want, I’ll tell you. Another shitted on everything when they closed the center of Madrid again for the demonstration of gays, who get on the floats to show themselves half naked and then leave the city in disgust, hey, I don’t care what they do at home, but there is no need for them to rub it all over my face. Let them go to the Casa de Campo, they do no harm there and are out of sight. And then, when the aggressions went from punctual to habitual and from habitual to daily, another of them said that of course, what are they waiting for, if they go around provoking, (the same as with kettles, if they don’t want problems they shouldn’t drink so much or go teaching everything, that one is not made of stone) because why the hell do they have to go with the flags, or painted nails or with mascara and wigs, that that is not normal and on top of that they think they are better than us. Moral superiority It is that they are crying out for you to break their faces.
But they don’t. They still don’t. But they are not shocked if someone does. Who has not warmed his mouth and his hand has gone. Well, normal. We are men and our impulses are difficult to control. If you don’t understand, you are not a man. Not a real one. And they laugh when those same words are pronounced by Arevalo on Tele5, who no longer let him make sissy jokes anywhere, poor guy, because today you offend everyone. We live in a dictatorship of the politically correct. Nothing can be said anymore.
But someone says so. Strong and clear. And they have mounted a party. And hey, they don’t mince words. Nobody shuts them up. Did you hear what Ortega Smith said? That there is no gender violence, that this is an invention of feminists and podemitas to set up beach bars and live off the story. There have always been guys who have spanked their women. The normal. But we are not, we are not of those. ‘Not all men’. But they want us to believe that yes, we are all the same.
Suddenly the eight no longer feel alone at the bar, now they have a party that listens to them and agrees with them, which tells them that their world is not old and their references are not obsolete, that their ignorance is legitimate and their hatred has every reason to exist and to grow and to express itself. And so the days, weeks and months go by, and with each day, each week and each month hatred germinates and takes root, deeper and darker, until one day they see a boy caught by the hand of her boyfriend and one of them gets emboldened: fagot! And the laughter, those predatory laughter, more bark than joy, explode in the street like a car bomb, until the boys stop clinging and hurry their steps, fearing the worst.
It is a victory without blood, but they can feel its taste in their jaws. They have finally won. After so long of deaf complaints and crouched in their burrows, they finally feel on the right side of history, as Díaz Ayuso says in an interview. Call us looks if you want, but at least we know how to manage well. That is said by the mayor of Madrid who governs thanks to the votes of Ortega Smith. And if so many important people agree with them, then they will not be so wrong.
They feel more and more courageous and go out on the streets not as the one who has conquered them, but as the one who feels that they have recovered them. The street was his for a long time. A former Franco minister said it when he was already minister of a democracy. The street is mine, he said. And they feel that some of that spirit lives in them. And the first insult they shouted is followed by others. And then some push, or a “and what are you looking at”, or a “stop recording, fag.”
That phrase was not said by them. That happened in A Coruña in the middle of summer. All televisions, eager for news, turn to the murder of Samuel Luiz like thirsty dogs at the source. And they hear respectable journalists and analysts say not to rush, that they cannot assure that it is a homophobic aggression, that where is the presumption of innocence, that a fag is a very common insult and that those who would be homophobic they hit if they didn’t even know him. It was a drunken fight. Again, men’s stuff. You have to see what those kids are like.
There were arrests and some of the eight were scared when they saw that the actions have consequences. But another reassured him. That happens to them for improvising. If they had been well organized, it would not have had major consequences. Because they are right. Lots of people think like them, but they don’t dare to express it out loud. And at that moment someone suggests it. Stay one day and do it right. Overall, what is the worst that can happen to them?
Surely they would not do it if there were an LGTBI law that included a severe sanctioning regime against those who commit hate crimes and that did not remain in good words and dead paper because many autonomies have no budget or interest in applying it; They would not do it if the police were prepared to deal with attacks against the group with specific units; They would not do it if the judicial system were not filled with magistrates who still ask the rape victim how she was dressed; They would not do it if our increasingly precarious educational system had enjoyed the consensus of all democratic parties to teach basic values of coexistence and diversity in schools; They would not do it if the most progressive government in history stopped living in the complacency of having approved the Equal Marriage Law more than 15 years ago and cared to protect once and for all the protection of gays, lesbians, bisexuals and over all transsexuals; They would not do it if the prime-time programs did not give a loudspeaker to gathering people who deny that a shouting murder is homophobic or would reply forcefully when a man from Vox assures that violence against women and homosexuals is on the rise because of the immigration; They would not do it, in short, if that jocular comment from a while ago, which was born as a joke in the mind of one of them, had not spread throughout all in a runaway metastasis and fueled by fear and ignorance of some and the electoral strategies of others.
But it comes on a Sunday afternoon and they do. One has bought eight ski masks, one per head. And they have gone out into the street in broad daylight. That’s how unpunished they feel. And they have gone to Malasaña, where they will surely find a fagot. And they have noticed one who walks only with his mobile. And they have hidden their face, as cowards do, and they have thrown themselves upon it. They have put him in a portal and they have split his lip from a host. Some grab him. Others watch that no one approaches, that no one goes down the stairs. And they lower his pants. And the boy cries and screams and tries to hit, to wake up, to be someone else, but he can’t, they won’t let him, because eight men have decided that he has to pay to be who he is. And his underpants are lowered. And he calls him a fag, but this time he feels that just saying it is not enough, because the pleasure of the insult is too fleeting. And take out a razor. And all that hatred turns to blood.
At five in the afternoon. It was five o’clock in the afternoon. Wounds burned like suns and crowds smashed windows. Thus ends one of the most popular poems by Federico García Lorca (‘Cry for Ignacio Sánchez Mejías’). They killed him for being red and for being a fag. The assassins of then were the same of today, but with different faces and other weapons. And if we don’t do something immediately, there will be more victims. Like Federico. Like Samuel Luiz. Like so many others, we are in mortal danger because we have become the target of a group of terrorists. Because that is what they are: an organized and uniformed group that plans to eliminate a group of people, protected by a political party that legitimizes them. And it is about time that they were treated as such. Let’s smash the windows and start pointing them out for what they are.