For many people around the world, October 20 is Spirit Day. The purple Spirit Day is a public initiative that was created by GLAAD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation). For people who want to show support for the teens who took their lives because of anti-gay bullying, can participate by wearing purple.
While we should remember these kids always, today is a day to focus our attention on these wonderful young people who ended their own lives as a result of gay abuse. I am reprinting this blog to honor their memory and show my support to the LGBT community.
Gay Teen Suicide:
Rest in Peace Asher, Raymond, Tyler, Billy & Seth
Originally posted October 5, 2010
Tall, short, fat, thin, smart, simple, gay or straight, I love my son. He is the single most important thing in my life and there is nothing I would not do for him, or anything he could do that would make me not love him. His joy is my joy and his pain is my own. I cannot imagine what I would do if my child was struggling so hard with life that suicide was the answer.
There have been a series of teen suicides over the past few weeks by children who were gay, and being bullied. Bullying is heartbreaking and simply unacceptable, on any level, from anyone. The kids who bullied these young children, along with their parents, have blood on their hands. They killed these children and should be held accountable.
To every child that is suffering and in pain, you are not alone. You can get help and I promise you it will get better. Get help. You can call The Trevor Project, 24 hours a day, from anywhere in the country, toll free. They can be reached at 866-4-U-TREVOR. That’s 866-488-7386. You can learn about this invaluable organization at The Trevor Project
Bullies are not just children. Kids learn from their parents. If parents condone this behavior it will never stop. The senseless deaths of these children must be a wake up call to this country. We must make this a country where everyone is treated equal, afforded the same rights, are allowed to marry, and can serve in the military.
My heart is broken for these young men and their families. I hope their passing will lead to change. Asher Brown and Seth Walsh were 13 years old. Billy Lucas was 15, Tyler Clementi, 18 and Raymond Chase, 19. Do the people who are blocking gay marriage, and supporting Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, not realize their actions are directly related to the deaths of these children?
You are putting a sign on the back of gay Americans saying, “kick me.” You are saying they are not equal, do not need to be treated the same, and are therefore setting them up for failure. How can these children fight back and take pride in who they are, when the government is telling them they are nothing? It’s time for these children to be given hope.
If my son where to bully another child there would be consequences. If my son witnessed another child being bullied and did not try to help that child, there would be consequences. If my son were gay, I would love him, embrace him, and kick the ass of anyone who felt they could make him feel bad about who he is and the way God created him.
It is heartbreaking to me that these children looked to death as an escape from their torment. No child should ever take his or her own life, and no parent should ever have to bury a child. There is a great article about the five things you need to know about gay teen suicide at:
We must remember these children, learn from them, and unite as a nation to help others who are feeling their pain. God would not want us to judge each other this way. This is America and we are all equal. Tall, short, fat, thin, smart, simple, gay or straight, we are all the same. Why must a child die this way? It is a sad state of affairs when death appears to be the only option.
To the families of these young men, I am sorry for your loss, will keep you in my thoughts and prayers, and hope your children have found peace. To Asher, Raymond, Tyler, Billy and Seth, I know you are safe, laughing and free. Know that we love you and your passing will inspire change, and give other children who are in pain the strength to keep the faith.
To learn more about spirit day, you can visit GLAAD.
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