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Author Topic: Fresh hate scrawled on lesbian couple's fence  (Read 177 times)

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Offline Daily News

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Fresh hate scrawled on lesbian couple's fence
« on: 27 Jul 11, 10:26:am »

The Northland lesbian couple whose bulb business was destroyed in a suspicious arson earlier this year has been hit with another bout of hateful graffiti.

The poorly-spelt scrawling on the fence outside their Mangawhai Heads home appears to read "God hates dikes + qeers".

Six months on an arson attack which destroyed the packing shed of their business Blooming Bulbs, which was preceded by similar hateful graffiti, Lindsay Curnow and Juliet Leigh were already intending to put their home on the market in spring, then most likely move back to Auckland.

"Juliet and I have not really got over the shock and this isn't helped by the fact that the arsonist/s hasn't been found," Curnow says. "Mangawhai has lost its magic for us."

"We became extremely aware in the last six months that virtually all of the practical help we received came from our gay mates around here and in Auckland, plus from the wider gay community in Auckland and the rest of New Zealand," she says.

"Mangawhai folk came in droves to visit and talked warmly, but in practical terms offered very little help, except for the one chap who mowed our lawns for several weeks."

The couple has sold the Blooming Bulbs business to Helensville woman Joy Griffiths and will remain ijn partnership with her as consultants for at least the first season.

"There wasn't a lot left of Blooming Bulbs: the website, our computer inventory and invoicing system, the database, and the goodwill," Curnow says.

"We loved our little business, and were very keen to see it continue and someone else get a chance to run with it.

Offline Daily News

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Re: Fresh hate scrawled on lesbian couple's fence
« Reply #1 on: 28 Jul 11, 12:58:pm »
Residents and visitors of the popular Northland holiday destination of Mangawhai are being urged to come forward if they know anything about what is being described as the 'grotesque' harassment of a lesbian couple, who are even more determined to leave town as fresh juvenile hate speech has been scribbled on their fence.

"God hates dikes + qeers" is the wording of the latest graffiti attack Mangawhai Heads women Lindsay Curnow and Juliet Leigh have been subjected to, six months after the packing shed of their home-based business Blooming Bulbs was destroyed in a suspicious arson. The fire was preceded by similar hate graffiti.

Curnow says it's sickening: "We thought the bastards had gone away." While the graffiti has been reported and documented, without clear leads she doesn't think there is much the police can do. As she tries to keep her humour up she has told Daily News she wishes real life police work was like it is in the TV shows. "We need Bones or somebody to solve this one." However the women have sold Blooming Bulbs and are planning to put their house on the market in spring and move back to Auckland where they will be surrounded by glbt friends.

Mangawhai resident and Kaipara District Councillor Julia Sutherland is saddened that Curnow and Leigh they are leaving the district, saying it's a great loss. "They were running a really successful business here and that's been lost to Mangawhai, because I understand they've sold that. And they're just good and constructive community members who don't feel that they can live here safely, and I just think that's appalling."

Sutherland hopes and believes the harassment is a bizarre exception in what is a friendly town full of hardworking people. "The whole thing is really quite grotesque. These people are living their own lives, they're working hard, they're doing well by their neighbours, they're doing well by the community and they should be allowed to get on with it."

The councillor called the women to tell them how appalled she was when she heard about the graffiti yesterday. She is urging anyone who knows anything at all about the crimes to speak up. "I don't know if it's a coincidence or not that this happened in the school holidays. It happened in the school holidays last time I think. And sometimes people have too much time on their hands and are just wanting to do some mischief or think they're being clever or whatever on earth it is. But it's just the hurtfulness that goes with this that is the worst thing."

Sutherland says the whole thing is appalling and very sad. "And it's a very sorry reflection on this community which is not at all like that. This community is full of really worthwhile people who work hard. The number of volunteer activities and the things that are being done around here by people putting in hard work and private effort for public good is just amazing and so this isn't typical at all of how things happen in Mangawhai ... so when you get something that's just plain nasty, it just leaves a sour taste in your mouth."

The fence which has been hit with the poorly-spelled scrawl is a newly-built replacement which was put up with the help of volunteers who held a working bee at the women's home, made up of by a crew from ANZ Bank's Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender (GLBT) and Friends Network, members of the Gay Auckland Business Association (GABA) and volunteers from the glbt community.

It was led by GABA member and ANZ staff member Craig Bonnington, who says the bank's crew are abhorred to hear of this incident and their thoughts are with Lindsay and Juliet.

"ANZ believes prejudice of any kind is wrong, and we strongly support diversity in the community and at work," he says. "We are keen to help again and have already received requests from staff wanting to don their painting clothes and gumboots and remove this and any future graffiti."

In the meantime an enraged Leigh has changed the grafitti to read "God loves dikes + qeers", while adding a curse for the taggers below.

Any information about the harassment of the women or the arson can be passed on to police anonymously through Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Offline Daily News

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Re: Fresh hate scrawled on lesbian couple's fence
« Reply #2 on: 29 Jul 11, 08:03:pm »
Police are appealing for public help in finding out who is responsible for repeated graffiti attacks and an arson at the Mangawhai Heads property of a lesbian couple.

Six months after an arson attack which destroyed the packing shed of their business Blooming Bulbs, Lindsay Curnow and Juliet Leigh's newly-built fence has been defaced with "God hates dikes + qeers" scrawled in red writing.

The suspicious arson in January followed a bout of similar hate graffiti and the new harassment has made the women more determined to sell their house and move back to Auckland.

Head of Rodney CIB Detective Roger Small says the ongoing personal nature of the attacks is a concern.

"Our inquiries are continuing, but we're sure someone, possibly living in the local community, has information that will help us find who is responsible for the wilful damage and arson," he says.

"If anyone can help with information, or who has seen people acting suspiciously in the area, please contact Rodney CIB on telephone 09 4279804."

Offline Daily News

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Re: Fresh hate scrawled on lesbian couple's fence
« Reply #3 on: 04 Oct 11, 02:49:pm »
Mangawhai Heads women Lindsay Curnow and Juliet Leigh have been hit by yet another hate crime, and this time their car has been targeted.

Someone has taken to the vehicle with a paint stripper and a wood splitter, causing massive damage.

"I think I must have been really, really bad in a former life to have earned this guy's attention," Curnow has written on Facebook.

The couple believe the attack, which follows the complete destruction of their bulbs business in an arson, ongoing anti-gay graffiti and silent hang-up phone calls, is a result of two recent articles in the New Zealand Herald.

"So he is a Herald reader (that narrows it down)," Curnow writes, still somehow managing to keep her sense of humour.

The couple has had enough though and has decided to move to Auckland at the start of November. They are also looking for anyone in Auckland who needs a house sitter in the interim month so they can get out of Mangawhai Heads more quickly.

If anyone can help with the house sitting request will gladly put them in touch with Lindsay and Juliet

Offline The Divine Mistress Potplant

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Re: Fresh hate scrawled on lesbian couple's fence
« Reply #4 on: 04 Oct 11, 11:00:pm »
So, all that's needed to solve this case is a security camera and a planted article in the Herald about how Lesbian Flower Sellers are amazing and Bigoted Arsonists are morons, right?

Also, Telecom can trace troll calls, how has Telecom plus the police not worked out who is doing that yet?

Seems like the police are a bit useless here.

Offline 355

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Re: Fresh hate scrawled on lesbian couple's fence
« Reply #5 on: 05 Oct 11, 02:06:am »
the police seem to have been particularly useless when it comes to queer specific issues this year (as opposed to general uselessness like shooting innocent people dead on a motorway or wasting enormous resources trying to nail innocent 'terrorists'), there is this case, that of the gay aspy guy in Christchurch and the lack of action with respect to a homophobic attack outside Urge Bar

sad to say this utter incompetence (or is it institutionalized homophobia?) isn't surprising
B3 g k+ m q r- s+ t