Yes, quadruple horror stories have emerged as a result of homophobic bullying around the country lately, and Lambda Legal Deputy Legal Director Hayley Gorenberg had this anguished reaction to it all:
“Our hearts and sympathies are with the families and loved ones of the four young people who took their lives:
“Seth Walsh, 13 years old, of Tehachapi CA, who hanged himself; Billy Lucas, 15, of Greensburg, Indiana, who also hanged himself;
“Asher Brown, 13, of Houston, who shot himself in the head; and Tyler Clementi, a college freshman in New Jersey who apparently jumped off the George Washington Bridge after classmates allegedly violated his privacy and webcast live images of him in a sexual encounter.
“But sympathy is not enough — we all have a responsibility to take action and to keep working until all young people are safe and respected, no matter what their sexual orientation or gender identity.”
Meanwhile, Charles Robbins, Executive Director of The Trevor Project, feels there are no more of these suicides than before, it’s just that we’re learning about them more often.
“These horrific stories of youth taking their own lives reflect on school bullying culture in this country.
“To be clear, they do not point to a contagion of teen or youth suicide, but that the media, parents, teachers, and friends are more in-tune to speaking up about the causes.”
Well, since the media, teachers, friends, and so on know about the causes, it would be nice if next time they spoke up about them before any more lives are taken.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on September 30, 2010