Suffer the little children...
Seth Walsh is 13-years-old. If he is very lucky he will see 14.
Seth is in a coma and chances of survival are not good. Reports are sketchy but the young boy was found unconscious and not breathing. He had had tried to hang himself from a tree.
Seth was being bullied at school in Tehachapi, CA. The local television station reports that friends and neighbors "said the boy is openly gay and taunted by bullies for years, at school and at a local park."
UPDATE: Sadly I must report that Seth died .
Apparently the situation was so bad at the school that the boy went on independent study so he wouldn't have to attend classes, but his friends reported "he was still bullied outside of school."
As I have said before, the kids who bully other kids for being gay learn their attitudes from adults. As I see it, part of the blame for these suicides belongs to every adult who has said bigoted things about gay people, to every preacher who damns gay people from the pulpit, and every Republican who appeals to hatred in order to secure the votes of fundamentalist assholes.
Gay kids are vulnerable. They often feel entirely alone. Many have no place to go, no one to turn to. Many can't tell their parents because their parents hate gays. They can't seek out support easily. Seeking help may make the bullying worse.
Libertarians have to stand up for the rights of these kids, to speak out against the hatred and the prejudice. We can acknowledge that bigots have a right to believe their own stupid theology, but we don't have to condone the hate they preach. We are on morally sound ground to condemn the bigots, to name them, and to shame them. More importantly, I believe that any of us who value human life and human rights have to condemn the bigotry. We must speak out against it.
Call it political correctness if you want. I don't care. If political correctness means private, community pressure against prejudice and hatred, then I'm for it. I yearn for the day when every bigot is afraid to express their prejudices, not because they will be arrested, but because decent people will no long wish to be associated with them.
How many more kids have to kill themselves?
Yes, if you don't think gay people have the same rights that you have, then I am blaming you, in part, for this tragedy. I don't give a damn if you claim your prejudice is sanctioned by a magic man in the sky or some "holy" book. Hatred is still hatred, even if you pretend a deity sanctions it.
The adults spreading these messages are infecting their own children with the same sort of venomous hate. And those kids go into the schools and make life a living hell for other people's children. What really disgusts me is that these monsters claim they are doing this "for the children."
Who will protect the children from them? The hatred they spread, in the name of the children, is what causes young kids like Seth to hang themselves. The bigots are not protecting children but helping to kill them. Maggie Gallagher: this is, in part, your doing. Mormon prophets and elders: this is, in part, your doing. Pope Benedict the enabler: this is, in part, your doing. Knights of Columbus: this is, in part, your doing. Republicans of America: take a look, this is, in part, your doing. Fundamentalists of all faiths: be proud, this is, in part, your faith in action.
Be proud of yourselves. Relish your accomplishments. You have managed, through the spreading of your hatred, to get another school kid to try to take his own life. Aren't you just fucking wonderful!
When the theocrats in Iran executed teens for homosexuality, by hanging them, people were outraged. Theocrats in America don't like to get their hands so dirty, they prefer harassing kids until these distraught children kill themselves, allowing these "Christians" to pretend they bare no responsibility. In that sense the Iranian theocrats are at least a bit more honest.