Sad and infuriating: 15 year old student commits suicide after anti-gay bullying
Stories like this – Bullied Greensburg student takes his own life – simultaneously infuriate and sadden me to a point where I can hardly think. Billy Lucas, 15, another unnecessary casualty at the hands of homophobia.
The very day that Billy’s mother found him hanging in their barn, students told him to kill himself. They would call him ‘fag’ and say he didn’t deserve to live.
When I try to express my desires to be an activist, I always cite to the fact that homophobia kills and that it kills unnecessarily. I stress that I am not being dramatic. Homophobia has undeniably led to countless deaths, and far too many of those deaths are teenagers committing suicide. (You could also say that those living in the closet have suffered a “death” in a sense, as they aren’t exactly “living” the way they could or should.)
It is the reason I have absolutely no tolerance for anyone that is homophobic or hides their anti-gay rhetoric behind a façade of religious morality. Churches and people the spew anti-gay rhetoric lead suicides. Period.
These lives can be spared if our society quits treating being gay as something negative. When it isn’t something that is a source for bullying or when youth don’t fear talking about it with their parents or school administrators.
The Give A Damn monthly issue, “Youth Suicide,” could not be more timely.
Some quick facts:
- Gay and transgender youth are nearly 4 times more likely to attempt suicide than their straight peers.
- More than 2 out of 5 gay and transgender teens think about suicide often, and 1 in 3 have attempted it.
The campaign closes its introduction for the topic with these remarks: “It’s time to give a damn, because growing up should be about making friends, discovering the world and discovering yourself—not about finding a way to end your pain and end your life.”
Watch their PSA on the subject here: