Blaze Bernstein's Homicide Becomes A Hate Crime
Slain After Kissing His Allegedly Closeted Crush
Lord, my heart hurts recounting this story to you all. I typically like to play Hot Topics Flamer and shout my opinion while dishing on a pressing event, but I cannot bring myself to feel anything but pain while reading the many articles I've seen surrounding the brutal murder of an openly gay teenager from Santa Ana, California.
According to TIME, Blaze Bernstein, a University of Pennsylvania student, has been murdered. Bernstein lived his young life of nineteen-years as a promising, openly gay man. While visiting home for the Holidays, Bernstein was visiting with a friend, Samuel Lincoln Woodward. Allegedly, sometime during their visit, Bernstein kissed Woodward, upsetting his former high school classmate. Bernstein was stabbed over twenty times then buried in a shallow grave in a park. His body was found six days after he went missing once rain exposed some of the body.
Dating back to June 2017, Bernstein had texted two female friends regarding a recent interaction with Woodward. He alleged Woodward was hitting on him and made him promise not to tell anyone. According to text messages, Bernstein was allegedly planning on romantically pursuing Woodward during his Holiday visit.
Geez, haven't we all been there before? The older I get, the more I believe that if someone tells you to keep something a secret, chances are you should not be trusting that person. Closeted or not, Woodward's alleged actions are psychotic and dangerous.
Bernstein's loving parents spoke about their son, his murder, his sexuality, and the all-but-obvious, tragic, hate crime he received:
"Our son was a beautiful gentle soul who we loved more than anything. If it is determined that this was a hate crime, we will cry not only for our son, but for LGBTQ people everywhere that live in fear or who have been victims of hate crime. We are saddened to hear, on the day we laid our son to rest, that gruesome details of the cause of his death were published."
No word yet on a court date for Woodward, but if the story continues to unfold in the way we are learning; he won't have the opportunity to prey on anymore victims. Stay tuned for further details as I continue to follow this story.