A southern California mom received a life sentence, and her boyfriend received the death penalty, for killing her son because they allegedly thought he was gay.
Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge George Lomeli sentenced the couple on Thursday, calling the 2013 death of 8-year-old Gabriel Fernandez “beyond animalistic.”
That’s an understatement — not to mention an insult to animals, who know how to protect their young.
The jury said that 37-year-old Isauro Aguirre tortured the poor boy, leaving him with a fractured skull, broken ribs, missing teeth, several burns, and “BB pellets lodged in his groin.” His mother, 34-year-old Pearl Fernandez, had abused him for a long time prior to that, routinely starving and beating him. He was “fed cat feces” and had to sleep at times inside a small cabinet.
Reasonable concerns about the death penalty aside, neither adult will ever hurt a child again.
While their religious beliefs, whatever they were, weren’t discussed in much of the media coverage of this case, it’s tough to pinpoint what else may have led to their thinking about homosexuality. Doctrine itself doesn’t kill people, but it’s still a powerful influence. When other Christians ask me why I’m LGBTQ-affirming, I point to stories like this as evidence of its toxic fruit.
These parents were obviously cruel beyond belief, but religion often leads believers to treat LGBTQ people as inhuman. They won’t lash out like this, but they still cause plenty of damage.
(Screenshot via YouTube)