More than a few people might be wondering why I haven't written about the brutal murder of Jorge Steven López Mercado in Puerto Rico last week.
The young man's body was found decapitated, dismembered and burned in what appears to be a homophobic hate crime, and the news has drawn unparalleled worldwide attention leading to a number of vigils taking place tomorrow in the United States.
I will write more about this in the future but I wanted to point out, even at this late hour, a guide to the different vigils taking place tomorrow: http://mercado-vigil.tumblr.com .
I also want to highlight the tremendous work that my friend Pedro Julio Serrano has been doing to bring awareness about the crime and to demand justice from Puerto Rican authorities.
Today PJ met Myriam Mercado, Jorge's mom, as well as some of his friends in Puerto Rico. PJ just posted the above pic on Facebook and it nearly broke my heart. In It, PJ and Jorge's mom recreate one of Jorge's signature poses (left).
Tonight she released the following statement:
When my son told me he was gay, I told him, 'Now, I love you more'. I want to tell the world that hatred is not born with human beings, it is a seed that is planted by adults and is fostered creating a climate of intolerance and violence. We must change our ways and understand that anyone... could have been my son. And I want everybody to know that Jorge Steven was a very much loved son.
So join a vigil if you are near any of the cities where they are taking place and join Miriam Mercado in urging justice for the horrific murder of her 19 year old son. I will certainly be joining protesters tomorrow on the Chelsea Piers here in New York.
For full details check out Boy in Bushwick who has been covering the case all week long.
And, for now, I will leave you with the following YouTube videos. They show Pedro Julio at a rally that took place on Thursday in Puerto Rico, and videos posted on YouTube honoring the life of Jorge Steven.
Some additional info at CNN.
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