As you may or may not be aware, certainly all the internet sites that I am a part of, have been awash with the news of a surge of teen suicides. 5 boys in America, in the past 3 or 4 weeks, have taken their own young lives due to being bullied for being gay. Yes, that’s right. Sexuality is something that none of us have control over, biologically. We may deny it or try to supress it due to sickening beliefs in society that there is a ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ person to love, but at the end of the day, it is something we can no more determine than the colour of our eyes or the tone of our skin.
On Wednesday, the body of 18 year old Tyler Clementi was found a week after he posted his last facebook status saying: “Jumping off the gw bridge sorry”. There are many more sources, to read more here, here or here if you so wish. This was after his so called ‘friend’ and room-mate hid a webcam in his room when he was with other men and posted the stream live on the internet. Although his friends may or may not have intended to act maliciously, the resulting torment that was unleashed onto poor Tyler obviously still had a devastating effect. On Tuesday, a 13 year old Seth Walsh from California died after trying to hang himself in his back yard. Less than a week before that a 13 year old Texan Asher Brown shot himself. Both of these boys were also bullied and tormented over their sexual orientation. Yes, THIRTEEN year old boys feeling that there was no way out at all but to take their own lives at such a young age. Just a couple of days ago, 19 year old Raymond Chase took his life, hanging himself in his room. A few weeks earlier, 15 year old Billy Lucas from Indiana also hung himself after constantly being picked on at school for being different and gay.
These are just some of the horrifying stories that have come to light more recently, although they are no means the first, nor, sadly, will they be the last. In a discussion with one of my lovely friends, I agree with the statement he made: “I can’t stand people being forced to commit suicide for -being-“. This is exactly part of the point that I am trying to make. I do not understand why anyone’s sexuality should define them solely as a person. I am bisexual, but I am also short, a woman, blue-eyed, Scottish and a whole multitude of other things. You don’t see anyone being picked on or ostracised from their community for having the wrong colour of hair, or being being pushed to suicide for having green eyes. Perhaps you don’t understand what it is like to be a different sexuality. I will never know what it’s like to be gay or straight, as a bisexual woman, but I accept that my sexuality is not the ONLY or the RIGHT one. Our entire world and population is diverse, and we, as good and moral human beings usually accept all differences, so why should this be any different? You don’t have to be gay to support gay rights.
I am lucky to have never really suffered the horrendous abuse that I hear about. Homophobic attacks on close friends and strangers alike always move me, reading the articles about these suicides had me in tears at the vile and disgusting people in the world that cause these things to happen. However my sexuality has not gone unnoticed. My relationship with my father took a dent upon my coming out, thankfully nothing too major, but I should not have to be thankful for his ‘mild’ intolerance. It is still intolerance. If you do have any question or queries about anything you do not understand, I welcome them all, but if you do not understand then in my opinion you have no right to judge or say anything offensive. If someone else being gay offends you, then gosh darn it’s a sad sad time when 10 years into the 21st Century people are still intolerant of other people basically existing. I am trying not to get sarcastic or angry but it really does sicken me. Some people are not able to fully come to terms with their sexuality or even be open about it due to fear of how people might react. They are afraid of people close to them, friends and even family, which is think is so awful and sad that you have to hide who you are from even the people that are supposed to love you the most. At the end of the day, you are still the same person and it does not change anything.
In the generations previous to ours, we have had women fighting to gain their equal rights in the world – the suffragettes movement. Then more recently, racism was tackled and wiped out to a large extent across the globe. I say this is the time for our generation to sit up and really do something about homophobia. Yes, a lot has been done already and people to a large extent are far more tolerant then they were, but these horrible deaths and thousands of other cases that go unreported just show that not enough has been done and it needs to stop right now! People need to be taught basic humanity. Personally I feel that the dominance that religion still has in a society that is not so reliant on it as we used to be does not help. I realise that not everyone shares the views of some extremists and there are many other groups and individuals that are just as intolerant. That is also a topic for another blog, as I realise this one is getting rather long.
I do implore and call upon the other people of my generation to stand up and really fight against homophobia, spread the love that knows no boundaries! If you have anything to say, any questions or feel that you yourself are struggling with anything raised in this blog, please don’t hesitate to leave a comment or ask for my e-mail where we can talk privately. I hope that I have covered everything and these are just my opinions as always 🙂
Love + peachhugs always