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27 July 2010

Comments

Tandio

this is just fckd up on so many levels. but it all goes to show you that the closet kills.

Former COGIC

Unfortunately our society and upper class black church folk do not approve of openly gay men, let alone successful openly gay black men.

But if DeFarra Gaymon were open and out he probably would not have achieved that particular success in his chosen profession. So he chose to be closeted and apparently sought out anonymous sex partners. Again, that's what happens we're you living a closeted life.

Maybe that is why he panicked but I just dont see a banker threatening to kill a police officer or trying to take his gun. Quite a few things don't add up imho.

Winston Jerome

This truly is a sad story. I feel terrible for his family, who'll have to live with this dark cloud for some time.

1. I believe the officer is somewhat experienced in taking down people resisting arrest, and also experienced in arresting park cruisers. So, I don't think he would just panic and shoot for no reason.

2. On the other hand, I can see the banker running and trying to escape, but can't see him going for the gun.

An independent investigation can at least show if the bullet's point of entry corroborates the officer's story. I have a feeling it won't, though.

Taylor Siluwé

Maybe he wouldn't have achieved this or that if he lived an open authentic life, still, I grow tired of that excuse to remain in the closet - or put more bluntly, to remain a liar to all those you profess to love.

What happened is a tragedy and society's attitudes about gay black men is partly to blame, but there comes a time when the buck has to stop with us.

D

SO HE PROPOSITIONED A WHITE POLICE OFFICER? IS IS WIFE WHITE TOO? OR WAS HE ONE OF THOSE CLOSETED BROS WHO LIKED WHITE BOYS?

Former COGIC

@ D:

I'm not going to focus on the man allegedly propositioning the officer. If he didn't deserve to die.

There is a lot going on here. Homophobia, self hatred, denial, the closet, cruising patterns. The overriding theme is that black mens lives are not valued, even in our own community. Black gay/bi/sgl/DL lives even more so.

Black Pegasus

SHAME on ALL of you QUEENS for making this Man's Murder about the "Closet"!! Leave your dogma behind and think about this family's lost. I certainly don't approve of people living double lives, but last time I checked, a Park, Bath House, nor an Adult Book Store requires you to submit your "Closet Status" before entering. So what the hell does that has to do with anything!? It could've been YOU or I who got shot to death in that park, so try having a little compassion.

This man was obviously gunned down by a homophobic cop, and little else will change my mind about this man' murder.

Dallas Cowboy

@ Black Pegasus:

Are you out or in the closet?
Sounds like you're still hiding.
This man was not "gay", he was married and had children and headed a bank ... which is probably why he fled from the police.

And sorry sweety, maybe you and your boyz go to parks and bookstores. I don't. Many of us who are out don't need to o in the bushes to meet a man.

Former COGIC

"SHAME on ALL of you QUEENS for making this Man's Murder about the "Closet"!! "

Spoken like a true CLOSET QUEEN.
The man was married, with children and not out. So you can't blame this on "homopobia", because he wasnt officially gay, but that's the closet trying to have it both ways.

It couldnt have 'been me' because Im not a MARRIED bank president. Im single and out of the closet. But if I were a married bank president, living a double life and afraid of being exposed (TJE CLOSET), I might panic and run from the police.

And it's not that people dont have compassion, they're calling attention to the very obvious fact that he was MARRIED with children and getting his freak on in a public park, in the dark. That's called being in the closet. Not to say that open and out gay men dont do this, but they have MUCH LESS TO LOSE.

But keep telling yourself the married man shot in a park, j/o and asking a 'homophobic cop' for sex....wasnt 'about the closet'. smh

Nathan James

As has already been pointed out, DeFarra Gaymon would never have risen to the level of success he enjoyed, were he an out gay man of color, especially in the Deep South. His chosen profession demanded a certain image and deportment, and so Gaymon made a choice to create and maintain that public image. I'm a little distuirbed to see so many comments judging Gaymon for this tragic incident. Think about what it must have been like, for Gaymon, at the moment the cop announced he was under arrest. I'm sure DeFarra Gaymon saw his whole life--personal and professional--disintegrating before his eyes, and this drove him to a state of panic. How many of us, in his shoes, woth as much to lose as he had, would have still been thinkiing clearly?

If Gaymon had, in fact, survived to be arrested, I have little question in my mind he would have committed suicide within a couple of months. If he'd been booked on a Friday night--which it was--he wouldn't have been released until Monday at the earliest, having missed both his reunion and flight home. Once home, Gaymon would have seen the end of his marriage, when the facts of his arrest came to light. His house, kids, car, all gone. Then there's the board of directors at the Atlanta Credit Union, to whom he owed his high-paying, five-star job. I'm fairly certain an arrest for public (gay) sex in the park wouldn't have sat too well with them. Gaymon would have been cleaning out his office shortly after meeting and explaining himself to a board of conservative Southern bankers.

In all, Gaymon would have experienced punishments from his family and colleagues, far harsher than anything a Newark judge could mete out. All this, because he elected to be on the "down low" as a means of achieving, and protecting, his social and professional success. This is what can happen if you decide you want to live and thrive in a homophobic community. I'm not going to judge DeFarra Gaymon. But I do implore Rod's readers to think about why there is still such a strong social imperative for men of color to be on the "down low", and why we still don't live in a thoughtful, understanding, adult society, in which there is no need for people to hide what they truly are.

Black Pegasus

@ Nathan James

Thank You for that cogent and common sense comment. Unlike many of these Catty Queens who are blaming this man's "lifestyle choice" for his demise.

That Cop didn't give a damn if DeFarra was Married, On-the-DL or a Flaming Gay-Parade Marching Queen. All the cop saw was a BLACK GAY PERV and as such, he saw someone who has no VALUE IN SOCIETY'S EYES.

An Injustice for One is an Injustice for All!

Dalton

@ Black Pegasus:

Sorry dawg, but the only one being 'catty' or a 'queen' is you. Disagreement is fine, but it's really odd that you feel the need to leave several comments attacking other commenters and calling them queens and such. You did the same thing in the Tyler Perry post too. It seems the closet and the DL is very personal to you.

If you or someone else wants to construct a 'no fly zone' around the closet in this story, g'head. No one is listening. You're calling Mr. DeFarra 'GAY' but socially and professionally he was NOT. He was supposedly a STRAIGHT married man and very successful, which is probably why he panicked (sp?) and ran from the cop. Which we all know you are NOT supposed to do.

As Nathan said, it's important to keep in mind WHY so many black gay men are closeted ... and why our culture rewards it (church queens, closeted preachers, etc.). But it's also important to keep in mind that living in the closet means living a lie and building a life upon a lie ... and you see successful man after successful man in trouble when his closet door is cracked.

And obviously we're all concerned about the police officer's outrageous use of force on an unarmed man. But the question still remains, why was he there? why did he run? what was he doing? and what was he afraid of? I'll admit, I've been caught in once in a compromising position myself, but being an out gay man I wasn't afraid of being exposed.

And please stop trying to make this man into a black gay martyr. He was NOT out and NOT identified as gay. A victim of excessive force and a casualty of the closet and a homophobic society. But he did nothing for gay rights. And he was NOT an out GAY man so stop calling him that and expecting us to treat him like he was a gay teen killed by gaybashers or cops.

Black Pegasus

@ Dalton

You try to disarm my argument by calling me what you are trying to defend? "catty queens".. LOL Really dude?? I mean Really? Your comment is a clear example of hypocrisy.

And again, my sentiments stand! What you'll have done in this matter is quite sad and pathetic! You're trying to apply some type of "moral logic" to the victim's demise. Asking silly questions like: "What was he doing there?" and "Why did he approach that poor white man?".. YOUR HATRED of Black Men on the DL is the same as the homophobia in the rest of the Black Community...

Who the hell do you think you are?!! Are you BETTER than Defarra because you were at PRIDE waving your Gay Flag and he wasn't? Are you BETTER than him because your mama knows you're Gay and his mother doesn't?!! PLEASE!!

Some of you are no better than the homophobes you claim to fight against!

Jim

We are all assuming here that the cop isn’t completely lying. And he probably is telling the truth at least partly, since it is unlikely Gaymon would have been in that park for any reason except to cruise.

So, running with that assumption then, I have one question when I try to put myself in Gaymon’s shoes. Why wasn’t he more circumspect?

I remember once being approached by an undercover cop in a famous Southern city park. He and I had a good long conversation, and by the time we finished talking, this cop was so enraged, he could barely control himself. He wanted so badly to arrest me, but he couldn’t justify it because I never propositioned him and never brought up sex directly. And this was though I had no idea he was a cop until, at the very end, he revealed his identity in fury.

I have never had any money or children, and no high station to protect like Mr. Gaymon’s. Even so, it just seemed like common sense to me to be verbally careful. So why wouldn’t Gaymon have been even more careful?

Sometime when I read stories like this, it makes me wonder if these people, in their self-loathing, don’t harbor a part of themselves that wants to self-destruct.

Greg G

"Are you BETTER than Defarra because you were at PRIDE waving your Gay Flag and he wasn't? Are you BETTER than him because your mama knows you're Gay and his mother doesn't?!! "

I don't think I'm a 'better' person but I sure as hell sleep better at night. And yes, my mom knows, my family knows and my job (=assistant principal at a middle school) knows and there are no problems.

Sounds like you have lots of issues, my man. If you feel that attacking "flag waving" openly black gay men makes you feel better, do whatever you need to do. As someone mentioned above, you're talking about "homophobia" and spewing it yourself. And its silly that you refuse to acknowledge the homophobia that drove this man (and you) into the closet.

"Claiming to fight against homophobia" SMHLOL Coming from a closet queen who defends Tyler Perry, attacks openly gay black men and NEVER comments on gay rights or equality. Gurlll please.

Derrick from Philly

Just a thought here: not all married gay men are in the closet. I've known 4 gay men in my life who were openly gay with their wives and families. Now, technically, I guess they were bisexual, but socially, they were gay (they had gay friends, attended gay functions, went to gay bars--one had too many damn posters of Diana Ross all over his home).

What happened to Mr Gaymon was tragic (what happened to him most of his life, maybe). But understand this: if you go to any homosexual cruising area of any park in any city in this country you are going to see just as many openly gay men there as you do closeted or DL men. The sex is easy and choices are diverse...and, yes, it can also be dangerous.

Cocoa Rican

Fact: Dean Gaymon is dead
Fact: No one witnessed the ALLEGED encounter between Gaymon and Officer Esposito
Fact: There is NO other instance or witness to Gaymon ever having any past homosexual history
Fact: It is not a crime to visit a public park
Fact: Gaymon cannot defend himself nor offer an explanation for his visit to the park or his encounter with the officer
Fact: Officer Esposito should answer to why as a trained officer of the law, he would have shot and killed an unarmed, upstanding man who, by his account, acted violently; and why Gaymon's actions presented a perceived threat to his life
Fact: Gay or straight, Gaymon's death appears to be a tragic example of excessive force toward a man allegedly armed only with his penis

Mystic Stranger

i kind of agree with Jim ... I have always wondered if guys who do things like this - out or not - have self-destructive tendencies. I've been out for years, but I have always been of the mindset that NOTHING good comes from cruising parks and similar activities - as evidenced by stories like these. If you don't wind up hurt or dead, you're putting your overall health at risk ... I just don't get the thinking behind it. Nonetheless, I don't think this cop is being 100 percent truthful and I think there's more to the story. The man should not have died and he didn't deserve to. I feel for his family in all of this. I can't imagine how they must feel.

Jim

@ Cocoa Rican: Each fact you say is true.

However, Mr. Gaymon was:

    Black  =  –1
    Gay  =  –2
    Affluent and “upstanding”  =  +3
    Total score  =  0

It is unlikely the police office will have to go to much trouble defending the killing of a “0.”

Police recruitment

Everyone should be treated equally in the name of the law may it be gay or not, black or white.

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