Victim of homophobic attack in Dublin city centre speaks out from hospital
"I don’t want this to change who I am or how I act, but I suppose there will always be a fear."
A young man who was the victim of a homophobic attack near Dame Street in Dublin city centre last weekend has spoken publicly about the incident.
Evan Somers was left with a broken eye socket, two ankle fractures and several other injuries.
Speaking on Liveline on RTÉ Radio 1 on Wednesday (13 April), the rugby player described what had happened to him as being like a blur or an "outer-body experience".
"I remember a man getting up in my face and calling me names," Somers said.
"But I don’t remember much after he hit me.
"I have injuries to my ankle and I’ve had one surgery. There are screws in my ankle, so I’m not sure if I will return to rugby, it may depend on my second surgery.
"I hope what happened won’t change how I socialise and part of me thinks it’s more important than ever to go out and live my life," Somers continued.
"I’m still a bit numb about it at the moment, but I don’t want this to change who I am or how I act, but I suppose there will always be a fear, especially now."
— Dr Panti Bliss-Cabrera (@PantiBliss) April 13, 2022
Somers said the attack has highlighted how homophobia is sadly still very present in Ireland, and more needs to be done to tackle hateful violence towards the gay community.
"The majority of people in Ireland are kind and accepting of LGBT people and I think people like my attacker are the smaller percentage, but they overpower the rest," he explained.
"I don't have words for all the support I have gotten in the last few days, I never expected it and I’m glad it’s being spoken about."
Evan first took to Twitter on Sunday evening to share details about what had happened to him.
"Last night a stranger called me a f****t before beating the shit out of me," he wrote.
"He left me with a fractured eye socket, two fractures in my ankle, a dislocation in my ankle and some other minor injuries.
"We’ve come a long way but still have such a long way to go in terms of equality."
The incident was condemned by Tánaiste Leo Varadkar on Monday.
Varadkar outlined plans to discuss the need for a stronger Garda presence on the streets and new hate crime laws with Minister For Justice Helen McEntee.