Enough Is Enough
Four names that will be hard for me to forget after today. Asher Brown, 13 years old. Seth Walsh, 13 years old. Billy Lucas, 15 years old. And today, I heard about Tyler Clemente, 19 years old. Four young men, three of which are more children than men, who are dead because of bullying in their schools.
What brought it to my attention today was the news that Seth died Monday after lingering on life support for eight days. He hung himself in his home state of California.
Asher shot himself with his stepfather's gun, after the teasing, taunting and bullying at school became too much for the gay teen.
Billy grew up in Indiana, and hung himself in the family's barn.
And Tyler, involved in a sexual encounter with a male partner, jumped off of the George Washington Bridge after the encounter was videoed and released publicly by his roommate.
Their names are etched into my mind.
Bullying has been around for all of our lifetimes. I recall being teased and tormented in grade, middle and high schools for being fat. It seemed daily that I had to endure name calling, taunts, laughing and ridicule at the hands of my peers.
Bullying, however, was not my experience, and thankfully so. My soul felt tortured enough with the emotionally hurtful words, let alone what went on for these young men.
I came out when I was in my twenties, so I didn't have the middle and high school experience of going through my sexual identity awakening. However, I can hardly imagine what it is like to have sex acts simulated in front of you on a school bus. Called a "faggot", "queer", "dyke". Pushed down stairs, be tortured at your locker, be threatened every day.Continued on the next page