The Netherlands has long been very progressive in regards to LGBT rights—it was the country in the world to legalize same-sex marriage back in 2001—but, sadly, that doesn’t mean it’s free from homophobia and Hate Crimes.
Recently, a married same-sex couple, Jasper Vernes-Sewratan and Ronnie Sewratan-Vernes, were attacked by a group of thugs while returning home from a night out. The attacker’s yelled homophobic slurs at the couple because the two men were holding hands, and then the thugs beat both men so badly that they were hospitalized.
Luckily, the thugs have been arrested but this isn’t about that, it’s about what happened in The Netherlands following the attack ... Politicians in the country are showing solidarity to Jasper Vernes-Sewratan and Ronnie Sewratan-Vernes by holding hands in public.
Lodewijk Asscher, the country’s Deputy Prime Minister and leader of the Labor Party posted this photo to Twitter:
And then, Alexander Pechtold, leader of the Democrats 66 party, joined in, posting a photo to Twitter in which he is holding hands with party member Wouter Koolmees, and captioned it: “Stop violence against gay people. #allemannenhandinhand”
And the movement traveled across the sea to New York, where the staff of the Dutch mission at the United Nations posted their support of the couple to social media:
Even police in The Netherlands got involved:
This is how change is made, when even those who are not personally affected by the violence take a stand against hate.
Plus, it’s kinda hot seeing all these Dutch men holding hands so, yeah, it’s a win-win.