In a column about a Rutgers University student who committed suicide because he was publicly humiliated by his freshman roommate for being gay, New York Post columnist Andrea Peyser publicly humiliates the roommate — who by all accounts is not gay — by claiming that he’s a “possible closet case.”
She then calls Dharun Ravi, the former Rutgers University student who received a slap on the wrist for his involvement in the 2010 suicide death of Tyler Clementi, a “doofus douchebag” before arguing that just about everyone who’d ever met Clementi should be charged with a crime in his suicide.
Clementi, as you probably know, jumped off the George Washington Bridge
in September of 2010 after he learned that Ravi had recorded him making
out with a man in the dorm room the two shared. The case brought
national attention to the issue of cyber-bullying and the struggles of LGBT youth.
Here’s a taste of Peyser’s column:
Why prosecute a doofus douche bag — and possible closet case — like
Ravi? Why not go after every single kid whoever shouted an anti-gay
slur? Or every mother who rejected her gay son?
Ravi may be a doofus, and he may be a douchebag, but there is nothing to
suggest that he’s gay. If he is gay, though, Peyser apparently thinks
it’s her job to tell the world.
Peyser cites comments made by Ravi’s attorneys (at sentencing — when
defense lawyers will say whatever it takes to get their client the best
sentence possible) as some sort of basis for her claim that Ravi might
be a homosexual.
From her column:
Minutes earlier, Ravi’s own lawyer, Steve Altman, asked that his
client get only probation, using a pitch that made Ravi’s sheet-peeking
sound suspiciously as if it were motivated not by anti-gay bias, but his
own failure to own up to same-sex urges.
Altman repeated, twice,
as if quoting a porn flick, that Ravi was not “desiring or wanting to
see sexual penetration or sexual contact” when he flipped on his cam.
“Sexual penetration or sexual contact.”
Again, there is nothing to suggest that Ravi’s gay. If he is,
though, he was just outed by Andrea Peyser — in a column about how
horrible it is to publicly humiliate people based on their sexual
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on May 22, 2012