The attacks on the LGTBI collective in Spain are real. This is how hundreds of people have wanted to express it in the streets this week before the wave of attacks on trans and homosexual people in cities such as Valencia, Toledo and Jaén. In addition, as published by elDiario.es, a man has been sentenced to two years in prison for extorting a young man by revealing his sexual orientation to the point of suicide. Although the trigger for which the LGTBI rights groups began to mobilize was the complaint of an attack on a young homosexual in Madrid that turned out to be finally consented.
According to organizations such as the Madrid Marika Movement, “violence, harassment, fear and the danger of death” continue to exist and are reason enough to continue to demand the cessation of these situations. “If we have believed this boy’s complaint, it is because attacks happen every day,” said a young woman at the concentration on Wednesday. Now, this Saturday the 11th, the protesters return to the public thoroughfare, where the Cogam and Kifkif collective convene a rally under the slogan “They are killing us. Rally in the face of the wave of attacks on LGTBI people.”
At 18:30 the organizers of the event began to arrive at the central Puerta del Sol in Madrid, and with them, the first groups of attendees. The Cogam collective carries a large banner: “Against aggression, to live without fear.” With the arrival of the Kifkif group, you can read posters with other messages: “Stigma and social exclusion are the true death sentence”, “If you don’t count it, it doesn’t count.”
After learning that the young man who denounced a homophobic attack in Madrid retracted and said that the injuries were consensual, Andrés, attending the demonstration this Saturday, says that “a chickpea does not spoil the stew.” In other words, a false report does not mean that the others are also false.
“In recent times, homophobic, racist and sexist aggressions are increasing,” continues the protester, who points to certain political parties that “support” these attacks. Specifically, Andrés speaks of Vox: “They said that this aggression had been a matter of migrants”, which causes this group to “be called into question”. The assistant also talks about the importance of reporting any situation of violence, not only on the street, but also “at work.” “They cannot silence us,” he denounces.
Following the protester’s statements about Vox, a woman has begun to rebuke those attending the protest when they began to chant the song “Abascal is a criminal.”
Following the latest news of attacks on LGTBI people, this Friday the Ministry of the Interior announced that there will be specific groups for hate crimes in the information units of the Police and the Civil Guard, as part of the second Action Plan of Fight Against Hate Crimes 2022-2024. In this way, they intend to develop “risk assessment tools” to “prevent” this type of crime, which has been increasing in the last seven years. However, according to the experts, on many occasions the victims do not report to the police station, which makes it even more difficult to quantify how many attacks of this type the group receives.
At 7:00 p.m., the time of the convocation, the first chants begin to be heard, remembering the young man murdered two months ago in Galicia: “Samuel, listen, we continue in the fight,” shout members of the student union through the megaphone In the center of the square. Urko affirms that “now we have to go out more than ever” before the wave of violence against the group.
Like the rest of the attendees, Urko also feels Samuel’s murder very present: “There you can’t look the other way, we’ve all seen how they kicked him to death,” he says. “Homophobes feel supported by certain messages from the institutions,” continues Urko.
Lucia also believes that it is important to analyze institutions. The young woman talks about the “oppression” suffered by the LGTBI collective: “Just because we can get married and because they don’t kill us does not mean that we have real rights on a day-to-day basis.” Regarding the aggressors, he thinks that there are still “the same people, only now they are mobilizing”, in this case against “homosexual people”, he concludes.
Half an hour after the official start of the rally, hundreds of protesters gather in the emblematic Madrid square. Among them are Ana, her husband, and their young daughter and son. She is clear that everyone must go out as a family to fight against the attacks that continue to occur: “If we don’t do it and we start with our children, where is this going to end?”
Organizations begin to read their manifesto, directed at LGTBI policies: “We feel abandoned by the institutions,” they say. From the groups they ask “that the state LGTBI law be approved” and that that of the Community of Madrid be developed. They conclude the plea and end the call to the cry of “In Madrid, with fear there is no freedom”, a song repeated by the rest of the audience.