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Another Anti-Gay Bullying Suicide

Jim Burroway

April 21st, 2009

Six hundred people gathered this evening to remember Jaheem Herrera, an 11-year-old Atlanta-area boy who hanged himself at home after relentless anti-gay bullying at his elementary school. According to his family, Jaheem came home from school last Thursday and hanged himself with a belt in his bedroom closet.

The DeKalb County schools, where Jaheem attended elementary school, reportedly have an anti-bullying program in place. But one classmate reported witnessing a bullying incident in the boys room that was so severe that Jaheem passed out. According to Jaheem’s mother, she repeatedly complained to school officials about Jaheem’s harassment, but nothing was done.

This latest death follows two other recent bullying-related suicides. Eleven-year-old Carl Joseph Walker-Hoover of Springfield, Massachusetts hanged himself with an electrical cord after repeated bullying with gay taunts. Seventeen-year-old Eric Mohat of Mentor, Ohio killed himself after a classmate publicly dared him in class to shoot himself. He was repeaetedly called “queer,” “fag,” and “homo,” often in front of his teachers.

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Ben
April 21st, 2009 | LINK

Another triumph for god fearing Americans, one less queer in the world. Every person who walks through the doors of any church and helps to finance the gay hate campaign has blood on his/her hands. I am sick of hearing “they’re not all like that.” They’re ALL like that!

KZ
April 21st, 2009 | LINK

I wonder if Laurie Higgins is proud.

Sean
April 22nd, 2009 | LINK

Ben, you hit the nail on the head!

paul j stein
April 22nd, 2009 | LINK

One less faggot, PRAISE THE LORD ! Can’t see how the right-wing christian crazies explain that to GOD and the kids who are dead when THEY make the transition.

Dieter
April 22nd, 2009 | LINK

It is about time these people who bully and cause suicides are dealt with and charged with murder. They have no business saying they are Christians. People who truly follow Christ would know that this behaviour is the sin and the victim is valued by God as are all.

Eddie89
April 22nd, 2009 | LINK

Sorry for the all caps comment about to follow, but I feel that I have to yell to get my point across to parents:

IF YOUR KIDS ARE BEING BULLIED IN SCHOOL FOR ANY REASON AND THE SCHOOL REFUSES TO TAKE IMMEDIATE AND FORCEFUL ACTIONS TO STOP THE HARASSMENT, THEN TAKE YOUR KID(S) OUT OF SCHOOL NOW!!! DO NOT HESITATE UNTIL IT’S TOO LATE, PARENTS! IF THE SCHOOL WON’T TAKE ACTION, THEN YOU DO!

Again, sorry for the all caps. But, I am getting extremely fed up and upset with all of these kids killing themselves over being bullied, the parents complaining to the schools (as they should), but the school not taking any action or not enough action and the bullying continues and the child kills him/her self.

This is what I would do if I had a kid in school. I would not hesitate to take my kid out of school and do whatever it takes to see that they continue their education. Even if I have to do it myself!

Eddie89
April 22nd, 2009 | LINK

Oh, and I also believe that there should be a law that the bullies and those adults that did nothing to stop it should be forced to attend the funeral of their victim. Yes, victim.

It’s because of their actions or in-actions that the kid committed suicide! So, they should be a live witness to what they have wrought!

The sun is rising, and I see the future : Equality Loudoun
April 22nd, 2009 | LINK

[...] You will no doubt cling for hope to those instances in which it still works, where for example eleven year old children hang themselves with electrical cords, or perhaps look to other parts of the world, like Iraq or [...]

Brass
April 25th, 2009 | LINK

Wow. Anti-religious bigotry in high swing today. Congratulations.

Emily
May 17th, 2009 | LINK

It is unbelievable to me how some people will go so far to push a person to the edge like this. Yes, this is how the kid was, he was reportedly Gay. But there is nothing that the kid could do about it. Being gay is not a choice, you are born with it. There have actually been scientific studies that have proved that being gay is in your genes and DNA.

Approving of this bullying that pushed to a suicide is wrong. No matter if you believe that gays are a sin or not. A human life was LOST. How can you argue that death is better than a person being gay? God still values everyone and knows that they are flawed. He does not want them killed.

Priya Lynn
May 17th, 2009 | LINK

But Emily, it says in the bible “They must be put to death.”. That kinda contradicts what you’re saying and if killing them is okay then surely bullying them isn’t a problem either.

Emily
May 17th, 2009 | LINK

But wouldn’t you see the killing of anyone immoral and unjust?

Priya Lynn
May 17th, 2009 | LINK

Yes I would. But I don’t believe in the bible.

sam
September 25th, 2009 | LINK

Ben are you kididng me, you should rot in hell. dont ever enter a church you big hipocrit. all you blind sighted people are like that. you are ALL like that.

Alex
December 2nd, 2009 | LINK

You cannot truly consider yourself a Christian if you condone the suicide (or the bullying leading to the suicide) of a gay boy. Homosexuality is not a sin. Gays are born gays, and that is fine. There is nothing sinful about homosexual lifestyles, as the majority of them are good honest people, like most heterosexuals. They are normal people, so keep your noses out of their sexual lifestyle. God is not ignorant, and god loves everyone. So try to be more like god.

Amber
December 5th, 2009 | LINK

How can anybody say they are “Christian”, or “Catholic”, or any other religous member, be so into God, and yet say junk like “God hates H*m*’s, G*y’s, etc? Isn’t God all-powerful, and all-loving? Didn’t he create everybody EQUAL?

I live PROUDLY in Campbell, CA where Mayor Evan Lowe was just sworn in as MAYOR. He is an amazing person, and we should all take a page from his book.

Do you REALLY want to know what I think? I don’t believe in the devil as a person. The “devil” is the evil insode everybody. He represents something different in all. However, it’s just plain sad when the “devil” acts likes this.

It’s too bad racism and sexism still exists. I can;t believe that in this day, age, and economy, people are still blind. Just think about this….. how many of you haters out there watch Ellen, Meridith Baxter, or many of the others????

GOD BLESS!!!!!! You are the ones that need it the most!

bk
March 7th, 2010 | LINK

HERES THE TRUTH – THE FAMILY HAD SERIOUS BULLYING IN THEIR OWN HOME

) Bullying did not lead to the suicide of an 11 year old boy in DeKalb County. That’s the finding of a report on the death of Jaheem Herrera.

DeKalb County school officials released their final report Wednesday, which says the boy’s death could not be attributed solely to “a simplistic case of bullying.”

The report cites numerous factors that led to the suicide, including what investigators say was domestic abuse between the boy’s mother and her boyfriend.

Jaheem was found hanged in his home in April. At the time of his death, his mother blamed excessive and constant bullying from other students at Dunaire Elementary School in Stone Mountain.

The attorney for the family are dismissing the report, saying the school system is trying to shift attention away from problems at the school.

Retired Fulton County Judge Thelma Wyatt Cummins Moore conducted the investigation and had released its preliminary findings in May. The report released on Wednesday is the final conclusions of the investigation.

In May, Moore said there was no evidence that Jaheem’s death was due to bullying, and that school officials had acted quickly and efficiently when Jaheem had been involved in fights at the school.

Moore says Jaheem’s teachers and the staff and administrators at Dunaire dispute the boy’s mother’s contention that she had complained repeatedly about Jaheem being bullied. The report says Jaheem was a good student and was well liked.

The judge also documented domestic violence charges that have been filed against Norman Keene, the live-in boyfriend of Masika Bermudez, Jaheem’s mother. Those accusations go back to when they lived in St. Croix, in the U.S. Virgin Islands, and in Georgia.

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Frijondi
March 7th, 2010 | LINK

And if you believe this, bk, I have some beachfront property in South Dakota I’d like to sell you.

JOÃO SCHNEIDER
May 6th, 2010 | LINK

im a bazilian teacher and have stay worry with this theme (bullying). In many articles the writers blame de teachers for not to do nothing. frequently im taking think if its correct that the teacher take one side to defende. i think that the child have take the front of own problems because the teacher(or somebody that his defende)cant stay everytime by your side and its only go potencialy the problem.

Kelsey
August 10th, 2010 | LINK

I’m so sick and tired of people coming on here thinking that they are such a good parent saying they know exactly what they would do. You don’t know anything! Just because a parent complains to the school doesn’t mean everything is solved! Just cause the school does something about it doesn’t mean its actually going to be solved, and the kid doesn’t speak out!! And sorry but not everyone is f*cking rich and can’t just move their kid to a new school, some people have to pay extra money to put their child in a new school and what if the parent doesn’t have that “extra” money then what do they do? Huh? Take them out of school so they don’t get any education, just cause you have your life so god damn made doesn’t mean everyone else does, so please just stop saying what you would do, cause its NOT easy!

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