Monday, April 28, 2008

The House that Hate Burned


The paper made it sound like some sort of domestic dispute--pointing out prominently that Scott and the suspect were related and had words. Words in which the suspect threatened to burn his house to the ground. Never mind that everyone here is related to each other. Pointing out that they were related is rather like pointing out that they had a mouth and a nose. But make no doubt--this was a hate crime. Just as the attack when Scott was coshed over the head was a hate crime. Just as when his house was vandalized was a hate crime. And honestly, the shunning of him at church was a hate crime--just not one that was a federal crime.

And of course, Satan's whisperers are out in full force. Saying things like, "He deserved it," or "It's God's punishment for him being gay." That they don't feel the cloak of evil suffocating them as these words form in their brains speaks only to how lost their souls must be. Even I, with my crippled faith, can see that.

The thing is--this was a really beautiful spot. The Pink House in the Holler was set back off the road deep in a holler off of Granny's Branch. It's a tiny little holler--just big enough for one cabin. Friend Scott's great great grandmother was born there.

The place had its own monster called a Three Toe--sort of a Smoky Mountain chupacabra. Friend Scott used to get freaked out about it at night. He could hear it snuffling around and crying. It seemed to like and tolerate Scott most of the time. Perhaps it will wreak a dreadful vengeance on Scott's persecutors. Perhaps it will come to their houses and breath its foetid breath down their necks. Perhaps Scott was the only thing appeasing the Three Toe. Perhaps now with Scott gone, the Three Toe will finally be free to rampage across the community, gnashing its dreadful fangs and shredding with its razor claws.

But of course, there's no such thing as a Three Toe, is there? Right? Just tell yourself that over and over and maybe everything will be just fine.

Of course, I have a perfectly logical and reasonable explanation for the Three Toe. I thought it up as I walked around the ruins of Scott's house, wondering about the strange dinner plate sized tracks I saw there. They had three deep indentations such as would be made by curved knives.

This is what I think.

The Three Toe is the evil thoughts, words and actions of the people in this community made real. It is the hulking specter of their own intolerance and hatred. It screams like a banshee in the night and seeks its victims on the breath of gossipers. It stalks the dark places where people complacently allow evil to happen, unseen by those who avert coward's eyes.

You, my fair community, are the Three Toe.



I want to thank everyone who has come forward to help Friend Scott. As promised, here is a list of his sizes. If you have any hand me downs you could send in his larger than life size, just email me and I'll give you the address to send them to.

Friend Scott sizes:

Height: 6'9"

Shoes: 13 Wide
T-shirts - XL
Dress shirt: Neck- 18.5 Arm-37
Other Shirts - XLLong
Pants: 40-44-Waist 36-Inseam
Sports Jacket- 46XL or L

16 Comments:

  1. Anonymous said...
    i think you pretty much nailed it. what the hell is wrong with people? and i'm sure there is a contingent of people out there who think it's okay.

    shame.
    Jo said...
    Ohhh Rosie I am so sorry to hear about what happened to Friend Scott. I am just thankful that he was not in the house when it was set fire to. These hate crimes make my blood boil. One of my nephews is gay and he lives in another country that is more tolerant of a persons sexual preferences. We only get to see him every couple of years, but at least he is happy and excepted where he is and he doesn't have to live in fear like he would have to do here. A couple of years ago three young men in this community beat a little guy to death and threw his lifeless body in a dumpster just because he was gay.

    My son was a big man(not quite as big as Friend Scott)he has been dieting and loosing a lot of his girth though. I gave the sizes to my daughter-in-law and she is going to see if they still have any of Chris' clothes that might fit friend Scott. I will get in touch for a mailing address when I hear from her. Please give Friend Scott our best wishes and let him know that I will be keeping him in my prayers and that they catch whoever committed the hate crime.
    Mike Golch said...
    What ever happend to judge not least you shall be judged. A persons sexual identy is no reason to say you are not welcomed here.it is no reason for burning the house down it is not their place to judge a man or a woman on how they live their life.That is GODs JOB!
    Tossing Pebbles in the Stream said...
    Your friend Scott is a "biggin". I hope he rebuilds.

    It is interesting that even though he is a local and historically rooted in the community he is treated as an outcast. Often people who are different, yet belong, are accepted as "our own odd person".

    Any chance of a house raising bee in the future.
    Jbeeky said...
    Rosie,
    I dropped a donation for Scott in your Paypal, thank you for collecting for him. Give him a big hug from us city folk. We have three toes everywhere, I am afraid.
    Leeuna said...
    How can such ugliness and evil exist in the midst of such beauty? It's amazing isn't it?
    Give my best to your friend Scott and let him know that there are people everywhere who care about him and are trying to help him. I hope he can rebuild. That is his home too. He has that right!

    Take care and God Bless

    Hugs
    Leeuna
    Andie said...
    Rosie,
    That is incredibly awful! I am so sorry for friend Scott and you, too.
    How is friend Scott holding up under these dreadful circumstances?
    Andie
    Betsy aka 'the goat yoda' said...
    Oh, there are other not very nice critters up in there as well- some I've actually seen, some no one has ever seen, but they know are there.

    The one I am thinking if is the Behinder. You will never see it until it has you and is feasting upon your liver.

    Then there's the Shonokins- them folks what are cloaked and shadowy wraiths that wait for you in the woods, just at the edge of the light. You don't want to go out alone when the Shonokins are about- you can tell when thy are out ranging at night. There's a strange glow in their eyes about them before they strike.

    I thnk we'll see some strange things happen in these next months with the monsters of the hollers up there on the move- they go after folks what are selfish and cruel.
    Anonymous said...
    My heart breaks for Friend Scott. I do not understand this hatred. I hope that these people are caught and in addition to the arson charges that hate crime charges are also brought against them. It shocks me to think that there are probably a good deal of people who think this is what he deserved. Truly and unbelievably beyond sad. I will keep Friend Scott in my thoughts and prayers.
    Anonymous said...
    .... you have hit upon something quite strange.... there is a great beauty in the mountains where we live..... the ways of the folk there are charming in their own way....... but also, there are intolerants that live in that amazing culture......

    ..... and they are horrible, horrible (even if interesting) creatures.......

    ... be careful up there, ma'am..... and the best of luck to you and your friend.....

    .... be he whatever he may be, no one deserves such treatment......

    .... if you guys need a gun, I will gladly drive up......

    .... what was done was just NOT right..... and I am as hillbilly as the next guy in your neighborhood.... and I can rain down hell and brimstone with the absolute best of'em.....

    .... I am in your corner....

    Eric
    Teresa said...
    *sigh* Erica posted about this... I'm so sorry. Unfortunately it only takes one moronic idiot to make the world a worse place - and it sounds like you have not only one, but a whole bunch of others who are tagging along for the ride.

    Maybe I missed it, do you have a paypal button up? I don't have any clothes (unfortunately while my son is tall, he's not quite the same height Scott is) but I would be happy to send along a donation to help him get back on his feet.
    Sue Doe-Nim said...
    No words.

    You should have clothing from me soon.

    xoxo
    Sue
    Peggy said...
    Makes me mad thinking of someone having so much hate they think they have the right to destroy someone elses life. what goes around comes around and I hope they get theirs soon!
    bonnie said...
    Awful. Just awful. So sorry.
    Missybw said...
    I'm working on a post about this. Because I see a huge disconnect between the message "love the sinner, hate the sin" and the mindset that allows this to happen. I find it awful that there's been no attention paid to this. Not even here. Hate crimes are hate crimes... even if your Mother's Uncle's Sister's Cousin did it. Sexual abuse isn't mitigated if your daddy did it to you, is it? Um no. So, watch my page, it's coming, with all appropriate linkydo's to you and The Plain Talk. And I may submit it to the News-Sentinel as a guest Op-Ed. If it's good enough. My husband says it is. I never know. But I'm about half through. It's making me bleed. Send love to Friend Scott. I am saddened once again at the people of Cocke County living down to my low expectations. But I'm not surprised.

    Take care of you and the little goat too. Be careful. The place you live is beautiful but dangerous for Outlanders and the different. I worry about you too.
    belledame222 said...
    So very sorry to hear this...

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