Survivor’s Guilt

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It’s been a difficult week.  On Wednesday, the young man in this picture, EricJames Borges, 19, committed suicide.  He was the latest in a series of young gay men who have killed themselves in the past two years.  From what we know of their stories, they were all bullied by others for being gay.  Some of them, like EricJames, also had to deal with families whose religion told them they were disgusting, evil, damned, and perverted.  EricJames, in a YouTube video for the “It Gets Better” Campaign, told of his mother trying an exorcism to rid him of his homosexuality.  He was told to leave home after he came out.  Whatever the exact situation in his life, EricJames arrived at a place where he could no longer cope with the depression, and hanged himself.  His friends and the LGBT community in Visalia and the central valley are in shock.

It’s completely normal for people who knew him to wonder if they could have done anything to prevent his death.  From his closest friends, to casual acquaintances, people are left to wonder, and hope, that they didn’t miss the opportunity to help.

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PIXAR: It Gets Better

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Some of the folks who brought us Toy Story, Finding Nemo, The Incredibles,  WALL-E, Cars, Monsters, Inc., and so much more have made a “It Gets Better” video.  It’s well worth 8 minutes of your time, and I recommend watching it.

 

Your True Colors Will Make It Get Better (via Queer Visalia)

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If I could sing, I’d sing it out, too.

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via Queer Visalia

Seth Walsh Died Yesterday. He Was Killed Long Ago.

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After years of bullying, Seth Walsh, 13, of Tehachapi, hanged himself.  Found unconscious and not breathing,  he was flown to Kern Medical Center and kept on life support for 10 days. He died Tuesday.   A memorial service is planned for Friday, October 1st.

Asher Brown, 13, of Houston, shot himself.

Billy Lucas, 15, of Greensburg Indiana, hanged himself.

All three of these suicides occurred this month, and were due to anti-gay bullying.   Seth had endured years of harassment, both at school and at a local park.  School officials at Jacobsen Middle School say they had no reports of bullying, but had placed Seth in independent study this term, after only 2 weeks of school.  Police in Tehachapi say there is no law against bullying, so they cannot prosecute Seth’s tormentors.  Asher and Billy were also harassed for being gay, or thought gay, and finally took their own lives.

Meanwhile, across this country, right-wing religious nutjobs continue to fight anti-bullying laws, claiming they are part of the “gay agenda”, meant to promote homosexuality.   Sounding pious and self-righteous, they would prevent schools from teaching diversity, tolerance, and respect, especially if sexual orientation is mentioned.  Some have even gone as far as to publicly claim that Billy Lucas was going to hell for embracing homosexuality.

I find myself wishing hell actually existed, so that there could be a special place in it reserved for these people.

Update:

Trevor Project Responds To Recent Tragedies | Blog.

Harry Potter reminds us:

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