Paul Broussard was a bank employee who lived in Houston. He was beaten and stabbed to death on July 4 in 1991 by ten young people who, according to one of them, came from Woodlands to Montrose. On July 4, 1991, Paul Broussard and his friends Cary Anderson and Richard Delaunay were attacked by teenagers (Haight, 2016). They were driving along Montrose, which since the 1970s has been known as the area of the gay community. They persecuted men who they thought were gay and asked to be shown the way to the gay bar. They were throwing stones at people who tried to help them. Brassard and his friends were a few blocks from home when the attackers overtook them, inflicted him with three stab wounds (Haight, 2016). All ten teens, shouting and laughing, drove back to the Woodlands. Brassard was taken to hospital, where he died after eight and a half hours.
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This high-profile crime had a significant effect on the population and the movement for the rights of the LGBT community. Houston’s media did not initially view the murder as a hate crime. But LGBT activists staged protests, some of them marched in front of the city hall with the participation of Nancy Rodriguez, who was the mother of the crime victim (Haight, 2016). As a result, public attention was drawn to the crime; all ten attackers were arrested.
During his visit to Houston, Canadian filmmaker Alison Armstrong was inspired by this story and created the film called “The Guy with The Knife” (Haight, 2016). It revealed the problems of the gay community in terms of delay in treatment, penal system, civil rights violation. The documentary film was highly appreciated by the LGBT film festivals public. These days one of the largest gay pride parades takes place in Houston, which has a diverse LGBT population comparing to other cities and states.
Haight, C. (2016). The silence is killing us: Hate crimes, criminal justice, and the gay rights movement in Texas, 1990–1995. Southwestern Historical Quarterly, 120(1), 21-40.