As an LGBT person living in New York City, hate crimes have hit a little too close to home. Change.org’s Brandon Miller wrote about brutal hate crimes against gay men that occurred last week in the Bronx. The men were beaten and tortured because of their sexual orientation. And less than two weeks ago, Allison Hope wrote about a gay man that was assaulted in Stonewall Inn and a gay couple that was assaulted in Chelsea.

Now, Mayor Michael Bloomberg and openly gay council speaker Christine Quinn are taking action to combat these crimes. They recently launched a campaign, called “Love Love. Hate Hate.” Print ads touting the campaign will run starting on October 22, and will be placed at 100 bus shelters and 100 phone kiosks in New York City. The campaign also includes a video that will air on NYC Life, NYC Gov, and in New York City taxis.

“In the past weeks and months there have been multiple bias attacks and deaths as a result throughout New York and the country,” Quinn said. “We need to continue our message of acceptance and love for all New Yorkers.”

The campaign is designed to apply to all hate crimes, not just gay bashing. But the print ad does call attention to LGBT issues. It reads, “Our DIVERSITY is our STRENGTH. When any New Yorker is attacked for who they are, what they believe, or whom they LOVE it is a crime against all of us. Keep our city strong. LOVE LOVE. HATE HATE.”

While the campaign might seem like a small step after such brutal attacks, it sends the message that anti-gay hate crimes are not acceptable. Through this campaign, Bloomberg and Quinn are showing that keeping the city safe from gay bashing is a priority.

The campaign is also sending the important message about the value of diversity, hopefully teaching anti-gay New Yorkers that diversity is good and that homophobia only hurts New Yorkers.

Photo credit: Boss Tweed

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