I can't say enough about how much I love the Gay community. I self-identify as being Bisexual, but secretly, I'm convinced I'm just a fabulous gay man trapped in a woman's body. I pretty much embrace every aspect of Gay-ness; Adoration of pop idols, house music, fashion, movies, musicals. Some of the most fun, amazing and wonderful people I know are Gay. I am an avid supporter of Gay rights, Gay Marriage and the repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell. Almost every young boy I surrounded myself with growing up turned out to come out after high school. This is probably why my Gaydar is so good: I've been a Fag Hag since the playground days. And it's pretty much my life-long goal to have Drag Queens dress up as me and a gaggle of fabulous and fierce Gay Boys following me around.
I guess maybe I'm just lucky that I grew up in such a Liberal area with a somewhat wonderfully open-minded family. (Except of course for my super Irish-Catholic grandparents) My Aunt lived in the heart of Chelsea, NYC's Gay Mecca. I remember one day going to breakfast with her and she said to me, "Now, if you see two men holding hands, don't be alarmed." I told her that we had a Gay couple in my High school and that it didn't matter to me. Love is Love, no matter who's doing it.
But sometimes, other people are not so lucky to live in such a Liberal, Urban paradise as New York. Sometimes, people are not as accepting or supporting of alternative lifestyles. Gay youths face the fear of having to come out to their families and be shunned in return for simply being who they are. They face bullying at school, on the streets, in their workplaces. And often times, this extreme bullying turns tragic. Gay youths, fearing that they have no way out, that things are at the lowest point, that there is no light at the end of the tunnel, wind up taking their own lives.
In the past 3 weeks, 9 Gay youths have committed suicide because of bullying; In the most extreme case, a 18 year old Rutgers University student was secretly video taped having sex with a man by his classmates, and the video was posted on the internet - both outing and humiliating him. He jumped off the George Washington Bridge.
This needs to end.
Through the time that George W Bush was in office, a witch hunt was in effect across our country. The hatred for Gays and Lesbians grew stronger and more violent over the last 10 years; Not since Stonewall have we seen this level of ignorance and atrocious acts committed toward the Gay community. From our own President attempting to pass a Federal Law prohibiting Gays and Lesbians from getting married to the fact that an archaic law such as Don't Ask, Don't Tell still remains on the books; This is 2010 - we should be more open-minded and more accepting of our fellow human beings by now. But yet, the seeds of ignorance have been planted into the minds of our youths by bigoted Adults who do not want to change their prejudices.
There needs to be a change in the way that we all think and not simply a mob mentality. Gay teens today need to know that one day, they won't have to live in fear anymore. That things will get better. That it does get better. That there are people in this world who will love them and accept them and be there for them, regardless of how grim things may seem right now. But that they have to be alive to experience the better.
Please do whatever you can to help make a stand and help make things right. Leave your ignorant beliefs and prejudices behind. Help make the world a better place. Help prevent these senseless deaths.
Visit the Trevor Project's website: They are doing something amazing and you can too: