Perhaps you never heard of David Shaw Alexander, and it may be with good reason. Anti-gay Christians circulated the story of Alexander as a counter-example to the Matthew Shepherd murder in Wyoming. You may remember that Shepherd was the young college student beaten and left to die in the cold because he was gay.
According to an email allegedly sent out by David’s mother, poor “Davey” was in a restaurant near his college when “these homosexual men came in” and hit on him. They supposedly refused to take “no” for an answer and became belligerent. Then on New Year’s Eve Davey went to a party and “these same homosexuals were there” and groped him in public and then followed him when he left. They allegedly attacked him, beat him and raped him in the parking lot. He supposedly died a few days later. The “mother” said, “This is what happens because our society doesn’t treat these homosexuals for the sick and perverse people they are.”
According to the emails circulated by Christians this took place in Edmonton, Canada. The problem was that the Edmonton police say there was no rape or murder reported to them. The university says no student by this name was enrolled, campus security says they never heard a word about such an incident. And, given that the temperature that night was -25 Celsius, pulling one’s privates out in public, a necessity for rape, would be a risky venture. In other words, it never happened.
When fundamentalists and conservatives claimed the Federal Communications Commission was being petitioned to make religious broadcasting illegal the FCC started getting 100,000 letters a month in protest. No such petition was circulated or submitted. It was a hoax.