What Pegman Saw – Gay Terror

“What Pegman saw” is a weekly challenge based on Google Streetview. You can read the rules here. You can find today’s location on this page,  from where you can also get the Inlinkz code. This week’s location is Chechnya.

WPS - Gay Terror 200607

Gay Terror

I can’t tell anybody. They would kill me.

Adam was a pupil from my school, older than me.

He was lovely. Sometimes I used to follow him.

He used to meet a friend in the forest, another boy. I saw them kiss each other. I was jealous. I wanted him to kiss me.

They had a special place. I would hide in a nearby bush, right out of sight, and watch them.

One day his friend came with a gang. They had pick handles and baseball bats. Adam screamed as they beat him. I stuffed my hand in my mouth so as not to cry out.

When they had finished, they dug a grave and threw him in. They hit his friend then, several times, until he sobbed.

“If you ever kiss another man we’ll kill you, too,” said one of them.

Letter received by the Guardian newspaper March 2017

Author’s note

This is entirely fiction. Unfortunately, the actual situation in Chechnya is far worse.

15 thoughts on “What Pegman Saw – Gay Terror

  1. I bet it is not fiction for some. I bet it is almost true to the word for too many.
    And in other countries, too. And not too far from this in the US, in some places where the murderers think they can get away with it. Some do. Thank you for writing about this painful, all-too-real-to-too-many topic. I cannot for the life of me understand why anyone thinks they have the right to forbid (let alone brutalize anyone for) the love of two consenting adults.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Na’ama
      Thank you for reading and commenting. Humanity hates difference, and some leaders are unscrupulous enough to use that as a means of political control. It is all too easy to present those of a different sexual orientation as a threat. Not for nothing is the term homophobic used; many people have a visceral fear of homosexuality. None of which excuses or justifies acts of violence or discrimination against gay people.
      With very best wishes

      Liked by 1 person

      • Indeed. All true. I KNOW these thing (which you elucidated so well here) but I still have a very hard time understanding WHY it is so threatening. Even as I know that the Church (and other ruler before it) had used fear-of-the-other indoctrination for centuries, often to further their own need for power and control. Sad. I hope we can evolve from that to better view of humans as equal and deserving of love.

        Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Josh
      Thank you for reading and commenting.
      There are many gay people in prison in Chechnya, where they are tortured. It is alleged that they will be released into the custody of their families – provided the family undertakes to kill them. Publicly, the regime denies the existence of gay people in Chechnya.


  2. This is really unfortunate. It’s already 21st century now and even today we discriminating people on the basis of things like skin, gender, origin… things that they didn’t choose. And we call ourselves “civilised”. Your story was really moving. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Sadly this is a shocking reality that is prevalent in many places. Difference is viewed with suspicion and perhaps even underlying fear of some imagined contagion. A well thought through post. Thanks.🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. It upsets me so much as a queer person knowing these things are happening in Chechnya! I wrote about it in my tinder series on my blog, should check it out you’d enjoy it 🙂


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