On Saturday night, Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras celebrated the 35th anniversary of the parade. 35 years ago, the first brave souls marched up Oxford Street demanding rights for the LGBT community. They were arrested by the police and sadly it seems that not much has changed. After the parade, a celebration of how far we’ve allegedly come, this 18 year old man was brutally thrown around by a police officer despite being half the policeman’s size and being compliant. You can hear his skull hit the ground and see the blood from the initial throw-down by the same policeman.
Thank goodness for camera phones and social media. Without them this story would have been buried by the media as whining by “the gays” and swept under the carpet by homophobic police. This video has been shared tens of thousands of times on facebook and there is going to be an inquiry into the incident and another alleged case of similar police heavy handedness. Both incidents the victims, according to many witness reports, were doing nothing wrong.
There were lots of police brought in for the night’s parade from areas of Western Sydney not known for their accepting attitudes towards diversity and homosexuality and this police officer is from a particularly rough area. I hope he gets the treatment he deserves.