Hundreds dressed in pink shirts Friday night in a show of support against a string of violent acts alleged in Columbus against members of the gay community in less than a week.
In all three cases the men were severely beaten, but their personal belongings were not stolen.
The attacks occurred less than two weeks before the start of Columbus’ Gay Pride Festival on June 23.
Among the victims, Chris Kratavil, who says he was attacked by two men after walking a boyfriend home near Indianola and Fifth avenues early Monday morning.
“It was a hard punch and he kind of just threw me in the bushes,” Kratavil said.
In order to help him heal emotionally from the attack, Kratavil’s friends at Axis in the Short North began to organize the pink t-shirt movement. Axis hosted a concert Friday night but long before doors opened there a sea of pink could be seen on High Street.
“It’s about putting a stop to it because it happens every day. It’s a very sad reality that we live in. And I think our bubble here in Columbus has been popped a little bit,” Kratavil said.
Supporters say the movement is not just about the gay community but instead about standing up to violence.
“A violent faction sort of takes over an area it’s not just the gay community that’s going to get targeted. There’s always going to be people roaming the streets by themselves, at dark,” Tim Meyer said.
Proceeds from the Axis event went to BRAVO, the Buckeye Region Anti-Violence Organization. SOURCE