Alex Blaze

Gay bar bombed in Rome

Filed By Alex Blaze | September 03, 2009 4:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Marriage Equality, Politics
Tags: bomb, gay neighborhood, homophobic behavior, italy, rome

Two small bombs were thrown from motorcycles at a bar in a gayborhood in Rome last night. Several people were injured, fortunately no one died.

While several European countries recognize same-sex marriage, and the European Union's Court has occasionally recognized the fundamental rights of LGBT people, I hope American gays will be disabused of the notion that Europe is uniformly more liberal, more leftist, and more queer-friendly than the US.

All countries and regions are mixed bags when it comes to our issues (including the US - Goshen, Indiana, and NYC are two very different places to be gay), and European countries are no different.

Some are better than the US, like Germany and Sweden, some are about the same as America, like France and the UK, and some are demonstrably worse, like Poland and Italy. But that doesn't mean that there aren't parts of each that are better than other parts of the same country, or that maybe they're gay-friendly in a way that's different or less-recognizable to Americans, or that they don't find other ways to bother us that we wouldn't notice from media reports coming out of the region, or that there aren't individuals in any country, region, or city who'll surprise you.

The article linked above goes on to discuss some other homophobic violent events from the past few weeks in Rome, and there's this guest post we ran a while ago from a gay ex-pat in Italy. I have visited and do love that country (and Alberto insists that he's more Italian than French), and I hope that this is something that they'll choose to overcome.

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I was in Rome this summer for 3 weeks. Gay friends told me that there have been small bands of young thugs in various parts of the city yelling " Bruno" in fake German accents at perceived gays. I understand that this has been occurring in an atmosphere in which Italian gays have been pushing for higher visibility, with "Gay Village" opening this summer for entertainment, and in general, gays being more "out".