Gay Jewish Man Captures Homophobic Stranger Harassing Him Over Pink Kippah
A gay Jewish community organizer and LGBTQ activist captured video of a man harassing him because of his pink kippah outside a subway station in Manhattan this week. You can see the video below of Adam Eli, 28, being harassed by the homophobic man as he was walking up the stairs of the 28th Street and Broadway station on Sunday.
THREAD: Trigger Warning: violent speech, harassment. I got harassed, followed and threatened on the street today. Someone was upset that I was wearing a pink kippah, carrying a purse and had a pride patch sewn onto my jeans. I am sharing the encounter for three reasons. pic.twitter.com/Y9HWiX2nSs
— Adam Eli (@aewerner) September 9, 2019
“He started following me and chasing me and yelling at me, and then I realized how angry he was and how intense it was getting, so I started filming,” Eli told CBS. The man can be heard saying in the video, “You’re desecrating the name of God.” Eli asks, “What, because I’m gay and wearing a kippah? Is that why?”
“Any man that lays with another man is an abomination,” the man says in the video. “You’ll be murdered for it. Take the kippah off.” Eli refuses in the video.
“That really upset me because I had been told that the first 18 years of my life. ‘Oh, you can be Jewish but please stay in the closet,” Eli told NBC. “This is the type of anger I’m getting for presenting as gay. Can you even imagine, the type of violence that’s being thrown at trans people, at queer people of color and gender nonconforming people?”
Mayor de Blasio took note of the video, writing on Twitter: “It takes courage to confront homophobia and tell a story like this. I’m sorry you had to go through this, Adam. But we’re proud of how you responded. There’s no place for hate in this city.”
TY for the support!
To beat homophobia we must address all types of violence against all queer people. #LayleenPolanco, a 27 yr old Afro- Latinx trans woman died in Rikers 93 days ago.
I know her family would like to speak with you. Perhaps we can all sit down together? https://t.co/wFTh5V7KRC
— Adam Eli (@aewerner) September 10, 2019
Eli did not file a police report, but by sharing the video has started a larger conversation about homophobia.
According to the mayor’s office, hate crimes against all minority groups are up 64% compared to this time last year, and anti-Semitic incidents have spiked by 90% in NYC. And as NBC reported, at least 11 transgender women, all of them black, have been killed this year around the country.
“To my fellow cis white gays who generally ‘pass’ for being hetro in public: this is what’s out there. Most of the time we can get on the subway, go for a run or go on a date in peace. That does not mean our struggle for queer liberation is over,” Eli later tweeted. “Racism, transphobia, xenophobia, islamophobia, anti semitism and ableism hold hands. Our ancestors taught us none of us are safe until all of us are safe. Queer culture is not going to Equinox and getting brunch. Queer culture is about fighting for ur community.”