A gay couple vacationing on the French island of Corsica were brutally attacked by a group of up to 20 young men while a large crowd of around 60 people gathered to watch the beating but did nothing to help.
“It’s like they just took out some popcorn” and watched a show, one of the victims said.
Mickaël told the French LGBTQ publication TÊTU that he and his boyfriend Benoît were out for a night on the town with Benoît’s brother, sister, and sister-in-law to celebrate the July 14th national holiday.
“I was dancing just with my boyfriend, his brother, his wife, and his sister,” Mickaël recounted. “A group of teenagers who were around 15- to 20-years-old made fun of us and called us faggots.”
One of the teens took out his phone and showed him a picture of a person urinating on a rainbow flag.
“I tried to stay calm and I told him that I’m actually gay,” Mickaël said. “That’s when he showed me his cross and told me that it’s against nature.”
The couple decided to leave the bar early but said the teen who showed them the picture followed them and grabbed Mickaël’s arm.
“He told me to leave him alone and called me a faggot,” he said.
According to both of the men, the teenager and around 20 other people who came out of the bar started beating them to the ground in between some cars that were parked in the street.
“I took five punches before I was stuck between two cars with 10 guys on me,” Benoît said. “Fortunately I didn’t lose consciousness, who knows what could have happened.”
“Would I still be alive?” he asked, explaining that he was thinking about Samuel Luiz, a 24-year-old gay man who was beaten to death by a mob in the street in Spain earlier this month.
They said that about 60 people watched the attack and did nothing to help them.
“We heard them scream ‘Faggots!’ like they were happy to see us die,” Mickaël said.
Mickaël and Benoît left the hospital at 2 a.m. and said that they were told to take at least eight days off work to recover from their injuries.
“It’s not the first time that I’ve been attacked,” Mickaël said. “But I haven’t faced such violence from a whole mob attacking me, it was shocking.”