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As a gay lawyer, I’d like to thank you for your column of April 14 [No Fault News], especially in light of the recent verdict. I am particularly dismayed by the verdict’s implicit assumption that it is reasonably foreseeable that a straight man would react violently simply because another man publicly revealed a crush on the former. It is this kind of homophobia that gives rise to the related “gay panic” defense in homicide and battery actions and remains pervasive in findings by judges and juries in actions in tort, employment, domestic relations, criminal and constitutional law. Many media critics are irresponsibly lauding the verdict as a wakeup call to “trash” talk shows. I am in Japan and do not know how the verdict is being covered on American television, but I hope that yours and other reasoned voices will be given an opportunity to be heard.

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