A very tragic and disturbing story breaks tonight from South Texas. From Raw Story:
Visitors to a public park in Portland, Texas were terrified on Saturday to find two teenage girls who had been shot in the head, according to MSNBC.
Nineteen-year-old Mollie Judith Olgin was found dead on the scene and 18-year-old Mary Christine Chapa was rushed to the hospital. Chapa was in serious but stable condition on Sunday.
The two young women had been in a relationship for five months.
Reports are that the local authorities are not ruling out a possible hate crime even as friends of the young women report no previous incident or harassment based on their relationship. Still, this comes across as an execution type scenario given that they were shot in the head in a remote area and left for dead.
It is imperative that we as a community keep pressure and attention on the authorities to ensure they pursue every possible lead.
But let me stop here for a minute to address a related note. These are two young white women in Texas. They happen to be lesbians, but it is important to note that many similar crimes involving LGBTQ persons of color do not receive this swift and immediate “justice must be served” response. That’s a tragedy on top of a tragedy. So let this vicious crime also remind us to step and push for justice in all situations involving LGBTQ victims. This is true of the general population as well – we respond to the deaths of Natalee Holloway and Caylee Anthony on a different level.
But google LGBT unsolved murders and you will be horrified at the types of crimes that are painstakingly documented on various blogs – a lot of unsolved crimes involving arson and escalating harassment in communities where there are no hate crimes protections. Again, it is also important to have a clear understanding of the law — while there is a federal hate crimes law, its not something that will be invoked if your neighborhood hooligans are harassing you. We need strong local laws, too.
And we need to rise as a community and insist that justice be served.