Saw the play - Laramie - when it came out some years ago. It really got to me.
I've come to see the two men invovled as agents of ignorance and fear: at least one of them seems to have had some same-sex attraction. Internalized homophobia killed Matthew Shepard?
I haven't forgotten the march for Matthew here in NYC. Wow. That was something. The police tried to keep the crowd from marching downtown, and at one point, horses rushed the crowd. They also arrested the organizers. It was an intense, but very peaceful action- you could cut the air with the tension and anger. We eventually made it to Madison Square Park at 23rd St. to find a phalanx of police 4 deep stretching across the road. What did they think? That we were going to storm City Hall? Their fear was on parade that night.
We stood in the Park and sang and listened to impassioned speeches. Sometimes I like to think that his death brought change, and sometimes I'm not sure of that. It took a hell of long time for legislation to be introduced into Congress.
Matthew was crucified for nothing. And that is still the most horrible thing to contemplate. I never have thought of him as a martyr. I'd rather he was alive, living in the Village, and getting it on with his boyfriend.
Be the love you seek.