"You're just tweaking, get out of the station" Harsh words met black gay men when they tried to report Ed Buck, before the tragic death of Gemmel Moore.
ViaWEHO : Jasmyne Cannick, a black lesbian activist who has written about what she sees as a divide between white and black gay men, called on the district attorney to grant immunity to other black male prostitutes who may have had contact with Buck so that they can talk about that. Cannick has written about Moore’s death on her blog and has published pages from Moore’s personal journal in which he talks about his drug use and relationship with Buck.
Cannick said that young men have told her they went to the WeHo Sheriff’s Station to report incidents with Buck but were asked to leave because deputies believed they were “tweaking,” or high on meth.
“We cannot treat young black gay men differently than we treat black female sex workers when they try to report an aggressive pimp,” Cannick said.
Cannick alleged other incidents where Buck engaged young black me in drug use and said she soon will be publishing more information on her blog, including videos of interviews and pages from Moore’s journal. She noted that Seymour Amster, a lawyer engaged to represent Buck, is known for his defense last year of a serial killer known as the “Grim Sleeper.” Buck, Cannick said, is the “WeHo Creeper.”
Melena Abdullah, chair of the Department of Pan-African Studies at Cal State L.A. and an organizer of “Black Lives Matter,” called the Sheriff’s Department’s initial decision not to investigate the case an example of “state-sanctioned violence” and made reference to the white supremacist protest in Charlottesville, Va., last week that resulted in the death of one opponent of the rally.
Dallas Fowler, who served on a panel of the L.A. Board of Police Commissioners and runs a consulting business, raised another issue, complaining that no local politicians, with the exception of Bonin, attended the vigil. She said it was important for representatives of the Democratic Party, where Buck is known as a major donor, to speak up about Moore’s death. Her remarks were followed by a brief statement from a Stonewall Democratic Club board member condemning Moore’s death.
Perhaps the most moving comments came from Moore’s mother, LaTisha Nixon, who posted a video on YouTube calling for an investigation into her son’s death. Nixon and her family lived in the Los Angeles area before moving to Texas several years ago. She was accompanied by her mother, Sandra Bufford, an aunt, and by Jamisha and Derrick Nixon, two of her five children.
“It’s too late for Gemmel, but we can save other young gay men,” Nixon said. “My son was more than a sex-worker. He was my son … My whole life has been turned upside down. I just want justice … Ed Buck needs to be held to accountability for all that he has done.”
Paul Scott, president of L.A. Black Gay Pride, spoke to allegations by Nixon and others than Buck engaged her son as a prostitute. “Black men have been hunted for our body parts for a long time,” he said. He said that Buck “had the money to order up black boys like they were on the auction block.”