Democrat Erik Bottcher, a gay New York City Council Member, has spoken out after his apartment building was broken into and vandalized by protesters with the anti-trans group Gays Against Groomers, which claims to be "a coalition of gays against the sexualization, indoctrination and medicalization of children."
Last week, Bottcher posted a video of the "pure hatred and bigotry" he witnessed outside the Andrew Heiskell Braille and Talking Book Library in the Manhattan neighborhood of Chelsea.
Bottcher filmed several protesters outside the event, including one who held up a sign declaring that "there are only two genders."
You can see his video below.
Mere days later, he posted an update announcing that protesters with "Gays Against Groomers" had vandalized the hallway outside his district office in his apartment building with homophobic slurs.
A defiant Bottcher shared the photos but refused to be deterred by the hateful display, writing:
"We will not be cowed. We will not be silenced. We will continue to stand up against hate."
You can see Bottcher's tweet below.
Bottcher's post comes amid a wider conservative pushback against drag queen story hours, which conservatives have alleged are an opportunity to "indoctrinate" children into the LGBTQ+ community rather than an opportunity to impart values of inclusivity and acceptance.
The attack on his office from Gays Against Groomers offers a further example of the ongoing "groomer" hysteria that has gripped the right-wing, who've accused LGBTQ+ people of building relationships, trust and emotional connections with children so they can manipulate, exploit and abuse them.
The local news outlet AM New York later reported that two women—44-year-old Erica Sanchez and 27-year-old Anna Morgan—had been arrested and charged with criminal tresspassing after vandalizing Bottcher's office and home.
Many have come to Bottcher's defense in the aftermath of the hateful incident.
Gays Against Groomers has made headlines in recent weeks, particularly after founder Jamiee Michell claimed gender-affirming medical care is to blame for last month's mass shooting at Club Q, a gay nightclub in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
During an appearance on Fox News personality Tucker Carlson's program, Mitchell ignored the medical consensus on how gender-affirming medical care has successfully lowered lifetime suicidal ideation among transgender people.
Mitchell proceeded to absolve the alleged shooter, saying the LGBTQ+ community will continue to be the target of similar attacks so long as the “evil agenda” of gender-affirming care is allowed to continue.