Recent gender identity hate crimes in the U.S. highlight a growing problem


The SF Gate has reported that on November 7, 2013 a 16-year-old Oakland, CA boy has begun surgery to repair second and third degree burns he suffered after being set on fire at his high school this past Monday.

Luke Fleischman, the 18-year-old teen who goes by the name of Sasha and who has adopted the term “genderqueer” to identify himself, or their self, as Fleischman has personally stated to prefer singular terms such as they / them / their.

Fleischman was wearing a skirt to school when another student, whose name has not been released, set Fleischman’s skirt on fire, causing severe second and third degree burns. The 16-year-old assailant has been charged and will be tried as an adult for a hate crime.

Attacks like this are far to common, they may not all be this violent, but discrimination and bullying against anyone who chooses to gender identify as any other gender other than their socially assigned one is a major problem in the United States.

It does not stop with student on student bullying however. As reported across the nation, and discussed at length on Raw Story, a 13-year-old boy was suspended from his school for simply carrying a designer purse around.

Written By: Dan Arel
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  1. What the fuck?! How in the world, regardless of age, could you think that that action was in any way acceptable? Leave the poor kid alone or better yet how about trying to get to know him.

  2. Strange how little love there is going around in a country that has so many religious people loudly proclaiming the love of Christ.Live and let live.

  3. In reply to #2 by Christiana Magdalene Moodley:

    Strange how little love there is going around in a country that has so many religious people loudly proclaiming the love of Christ.

    What actually is surprising is this happened in Oakland, CA. The SF Bay area is about as accepting and PC a place as you can find in the US. I guess even here when it comes to challenging adolescent male sexuality people still revert to the mob mentality.

  4. There was a wonderful interview on CBC with an 11 year old intersexed child F->M and her/his excellent understanding mom and enormously supportive younger sister. Listening he sounded just like an ordinary boy with all same interests you would expect. We tend to forget that a bit of confusion in gender is only a tiny part of the whole personality package. It bit like being defined as “the person with the wonky gall bladder”.

    Every one of us has some part of our body malfunction at some time. Why should we make such a big deal when the gender assignment circuitry behaves oddly? We are so superstitious about it.

    I have never been very tolerant of bullies, but picking on someone with this heavy life problem is a very low blow. I know quite a number of M->F transsexuals. A rather large percentage of them tried to commit suicide because they could not deal with the general rejection.

  5. It is worrisome to see how, in the school environment today, kids still pays a price for being different. The price varies from simple mockery and humiliation to blackmail and extortion to verbal and physical abuse. I was a victim of bullying myself as a kid (more than 40 years ago) and sadly, bullying is still very much alive in elementary school and high school. Some things never change.

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