Houston oil business president charged with punching gay man unconscious


#1

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#2

Christ, what an asshole!


#3

So, what do you folks think, does this qualify as a hate crime? Should it? Or is this just violent asshole with road rage?


#4

I’m no law-ologist; but calling the victim a faggot before assaulting him is probably not what your lawyer would recommend in this case(particularly because the guy was walking with his husband at the time, which makes it harder to suggest that you were just using the term as generic verbal abuse, without knowledge of the target). It certainly gives the impression that you considered the fact to be relevant in your decision to break out the violence.


#5

Thug life!


#6

Common sense says it’s a hate crime. He targeted a gay couple and lead with hate speech when called on it. However given that it’s in texas, the perp is rich and white and he was just doing what all hate-infected pinheads do, I’d guess a ticket for a broken tail light would be the worst of it. Expunged of course once the light fixed.
My guess his idiot buddy’s will be giving him atta-boys and he’ll have bragging rights at the country club. The victim will be expected to compensate fera for any harm to his knuckles of course.


#7

Full disclosure, I don’t like “hate crime” laws…they make thoughts rather than actions the focus, and they smooth the way for infringement of speech.

I hope there is no suspended sentence for this jackass…jail time AND a large damage award. (He attacked an exec from TI, the charitable foundation, no less. That won’t earn him a lot of love.)

But should this be classified as a hate crime for the stats?
Is his first violent outburst? If not, did the other(s) involve gay people and slurs? If so, it was probably because they were gay. If he’s been in fights with other white guys who were not obviously gay then he probably just used the most obvious insult against the target, and it’s just an assault that revealed more ugliness than was apparent.

Edit: I’m leaning more for the hairtrigger violent thug explanation…AND hoping they up the charge to a felony and put his ass away. Misdemeanor is ridiculous.

It was also reported that the MidStar Energy President has been arrested “several other times in Texas and Pennsylvania,” according to the Voice.
http://pridelife.com/anthony-fera-president-of-texas-oil-company-viciously-assaults-gay-couple/


#8

$5000 is too little bail for an assault one needs medical attention for. There was minimal provocation, which seems to indicate that they guy is just a violent git. $50k or more.

Only if he promises to stop dragging them on the ground.


#9

So is the victim; I guess that’s a wash then?


#10

It’s Austin, which is not the kind of place you’re picturing. He was arrested because a ton of people came forward with pics of the truck, and the victims have thanked the police and bystanders for the support they got.


#11

I am also not a huge fan of hate crime legislation. I find it peculiar that two of the major cases that pushed through hate crime legislation were the horrific crimes against Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr.; cases where premeditated 1st degree murders were committed and where there really should be no way to increase the punishment for the monsters who committed the crimes as they should already be in line to receive the maximum punishment.

That being said, as with most issues that involve the persecution/oppression of those in the minority, I try to check my white-hetero-cis-male privilege at the door before just listening to my gut and turning out to be wrong. (I was against affirmative action for many years while growing up because I was for equality. I was also wrong.) Still, thought crime laws do scare me, particularly in a “slippery slope” way.

According to Wikipedia, Chief Justice Rehnquist described his support of hate crime legislation as “this conduct is thought to inflict greater individual and societal harm… bias-motivated crimes are more likely to provoke retaliatory crimes, inflict distinct emotional harms on their victims, and incite community unrest.”

Clearly this guy should have had a much higher bail, should be facing felony charges, and should have the revocation of his license in the mix as well.

And, as with all things involving Texas: Fuck Texas (even if Austin is a cool and relatively progressive town).

EDIT: My partner just gave a very good (and obvious) explanation of why one may be in favor of hate crime legislation. “Burning some random shit on a person’s lawn is a crime. Burning a cross on a black family’s lawn is a different fucking ballpark.” That is the example needed after the Rehnquist quote. I’m not convinced, neither is she, but it’s a much easier to see the point of such legislation in that example vs. a premeditated murder case.


#12

Hmmm what to hate this prick for more, the fact that he is a business president for an immoral industry causing untold damage to ecosystems the world over; or that he’s a homophobic psychopath?


#13

Unless you walk and bicycle everywhere you go, I think there’s a little bit less dissonance in hating him for his homophobia.


#14

Yep. What I was thinking was “this is how an executive of an oil company behaves?” I also am wondering just how many of his own employees he has just alienated.


#15

Let’s see, he
1.) nearly ran some people down.
2.) when called on it, threw a slur for gay people
3.) after a few more words (none of which seem to warrant being mentioned) he EXITED HIS VEHICLE
4.) after exiting his vehicle, he went on to batter another person.

This is not a misdemeanor. He had many chances to just drive away. Instead he chose to get out of his vehicle and beat someone. That’s the second worst choice he could have made aside from attempting to run them down. Exiting his car changes this from an act of spontaneous aggression within arm’s reach, to an act of premeditated aggression, because he decided to chase down the person he was going to batter. This is felony grade behavior, and cannot be tolerated.

There should be no bail for acting violently when one has had so many chances to just leave. He decided to do the fucking really stupid thing here, and should have to sit in jail until his time in court.


#16

I don’t feel too much dissonance. I drive when necessary (I am pragmatic by nature), but cycle and rely on public transport for the vast majority of my trips. I’ve also studied sustainable transport, and I’m working at getting into the field to promote a shift away from automobile dependency. I feel absolutely no love or respect for the petroleum industry as it aims for the exact opposite of my goals.


#17

I’m a big fan of ironic punishments. Hows about we pay someone from the tobacco lobby to follow Anthony Fera around and give him atomic wedgies when he least expects it for the next 6 to 18 months.


#18

its not for the stats.

what prize are your eyes on?


#19

“Midstar energy LP” seems to be a small to midsize business and not the kind of corporation the title “president” would make you think. I don’t know how bail works in Texas, do they look at the perp slash suspect’s income, is it dependent on the crime, or totally at the whim of a judge?


#20

I dislike hate-crime laws, but I don’t see an alternative.
Years ago there was harassment at the local synagogue which the beat cops attributed to guy with mental health issues. There were a few lawyers and judges who attended the schule and got the priority moved up as the harassment was not random but !the-Jews! related. It took him actually grabbing or pushing a young woman walking home on the sabbath for the cops to actually do something, despite his record, though the record made it possible to hold on to him for longer.
The problem being that freedom of speech has to compete with millennia of genocide.
The American in me wants to go to war and even die to defend the radical interpretation of communal right to freedom of speech, the gritty realistic Jew in me wants a distractingly loud last stand with the villagers as my family sneaks out the back or beg/bribe the king for sanctuary so my children can live.
Hate fucks with democracy in bad ways.
(edit)Committing hate crimes is a way to coerce an identifiable population to either leave(ethnic cleanse), stop doing that, or die(genocide); it attacks the right of the minority to participate by attempting to erase them.
BTW the stupid Christian assumption that Sodom was destroyed by heaven for buggery would be laughable if it were not so disgusting in it’s historical abuse and against the intended lesson. The plain reading, even in the universally crappy translation, as well as Jewish sources clearly show that it was the debased inhospitable treatment of indigent visitors by the ultra wealthy residents of Sodom, to the point of demanding that the strangers be handed out to be raped in order to gain some enjoyment from them, that exemplified why the city must be destroyed. There was not even a few in the city who were not of this mindset that anyone who could be robbed, raped, or abused should not have that ‘value’ extracted if it were possible without retribution.