A queer Arizona State University professor was attacked last week by far-right activists accusing him of being a pedophile for founding a popular drag queen story hour.
Footage showed professor David Boyles being harassed as he was leaving an English class he teaches, and then shoved to the ground by two members of the far-right group Turning Point USA in broad daylight last week.
The video shows Turning Point USA member Kalen D’Almeida, accompanied by a cameraman, harassing Boyles with homophobic language and accusations of being "attracted to minors." Warning: This video may be disturbing to some viewers.
Video shows alleged attack on Arizona State University professoryoutu.be
The Turning Point USA members' footage stops after they finish questioning Boyles, who founded Drag Story Hour Arizona, about his sex life and accusing him of pedophilia, but surveillance footage from the area shows them then knocking Boyles to the ground, where he hit his head on the pavement.
In a statement on Facebook, Boyles reported that his injuries were minor but expressed his outrage at the wave of violence the US has seen against LGBTQ+ people recently, including a California woman who was murdered in August for having a Pride flag at the store she owned.
His statement read, in part:
“Whether it is bomb threats against children’s hospitals and libraries, a store owner being killed for her Pride flag, or the now-standard rhetoric that anyone who supports LGBTQ+ youth is a groomer, it has to stop."
In a statement to Pink News, Turning Point USA claims D'Almeida and the cameraman acted in self defense after Boyles became violent and "lunged and hit" the cameraman during the altercation. The organization also claims the men offered Boyles "assistance" before leaving the scene.
On social media, video footage of the altercation left many people outraged.
Turning Point USA, founded in 2012, frequently target college campuses to promote its far-right, virulently anti-LGBTQ+ agenda.
In 2016, it launched a "professor watch list" to target left-leaning and LGBTQ+ college staff, which ASU President Michael Crow said in a statement has resulted in "antisemitic, anti-LGBTQ+ and misogynistic attacks on ASU faculty with whom Turning Point USA and its followers disagree."
Local police are investigating the incident as a "potentially biased or prejudicially motivated incident."