A new viral video is circulating in Canadian news media and has many discussing the 10 second scene.
In the video, found below, we see a man and a woman crossing the road along a rainbow crosswalk. The man not only crosses the street without stepping on the crosswalk, but he also spits on it in mid-stride.
According to CBC News, Lane Specker was the man who recorded the incident through his car’s dashcam at the crossing on Corner Brook, Newfoundland.
In the description attached to the Facebook video, Specker says, “Took the time to let this couple cross the road and the man took the time to spit on the rainbow crosswalk. Take note he also didn’t walk on it. There’s still a long way to go…”
Towleroad reported on the video and reached out to Paul Combden, co-chair of St. John’s Pride, and Stephen Dunn, the director of Closet Monster, to talk about it.
“Here’s the thing: paint will last longer than spit,” said Dunn. “And I think that this guy who spit on the crosswalk who, I don’t really care about him, I don’t care about this act, I’ve taken much worse in my life.”
Meanwhile, Combden says he was upset to see the moment because, “It’s what’s happened in Springdale. I grew up in St. John’s, I grew up in a time when there was a lot of violence toward queer people, and we’ve come … so far. There’s so much progress and optimism and hope — [but] there’s been so much media around homophobia and I think there is obviously this pendulum that keeps swinging back and forth between progress and taking a step backwards.”
To play devil’s advocate, we must keep in mind that we don’t know for sure if the spitting was the hateful action that we’re all interpreting it as. (Sadly,) spitting on the ground is a common act, and walking outside of a crosswalk isn’t rare either.
That said, the man’s motion of spitting on the ground did have a more aggressive burst to it than usual, so immediately taking offense is understandable.
What do you think? Do you think the man purposefully spit on the crosswalk because of its rainbow colors, or do you think all of this talk around the subject is overreacting?