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Buffalo Teen Latest Suicide Following Anti-Gay Bullying

Jim Burroway

September 21st, 2011

Fourteen-year-old Jamey Rodemeyer posted an “It Gets Better” video last May describing his struggles with the constant bullying he experienced at school. He expressed confidence at that time that his family and friends could carry him through the difficulties. But when he started  a new school year as a high school freshman, the bullying got worse. It turns out that that support wasn’t enough:

Soon after coming home from a family camping trip, Jamey was found dead Sunday. His parents say he was always under pressure because of struggles with his sexuality.

Jamey’s mother Tracy Rodemeyer said, “So he hung around with the girls a lot, so then the teasing started happening like ‘Oh you’re such a girl or you’re gay or whatever and that bothered him for many years.”

Now, they want to carry in his message in hopes of preventing another tragedy like this one.

Jamey’s father Tim Rodemeyer said, “To the kids who are bullying they have to realize that words are very powerful and what you think is just fun and games isn’t to some people, and you are destroying a lot of lives.”

Comments

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MEP
September 21st, 2011 | LINK

This saddens me beyond belief. When will the world wake up and realize that the false bravado of unkind words and actions are killing our kids.

charlie
September 21st, 2011 | LINK

If there is a positive here it is that the school district has been all over responding to this tragedy. They don’t seem to be denying the problem or sweeping it under the carpet.

Unfortunately I don’t think humans are evolved enough to completely end bullying. Children and adults do it. People treat those who are different from themselves differently. It takes a thick skin to shrug it off.

Reilly
September 21st, 2011 | LINK

What would really help end bullying in this country is if more bullies got the crap kicked out of them by their victims. It used to be called “natural consequences” – and the lesson was learned not only by the individual bully, but by everyone who witnessed it (or even heard the schoolyard gossip).

Unfortunately, the overly-simplistic “zero tolerance” policies that are now in vogue don’t cover the mental torment of bullying – they only seem to catch the victims who finally snap and fight back. Result: an all-or-nothing world where either the bullies face no consequences and never learn their lessons… or the cap finally blows off the bottle and we get tragedies like Columbine. Let’s bring back the middle-of-the-road approach… where Biff the Bully goes home with a black eye and serious regrets.

Priya Lynn
September 21st, 2011 | LINK

Reilly said “What would really help end bullying in this country is if more bullies got the crap kicked out of them by their victims.”.

If that was a realisitic possibility the victims wouldn’t have been bullied in the first place.

T.J.
September 21st, 2011 | LINK

This is so sad. When politicians like Michelle Bachman finally open their eyes and see the reality of these tragedies, maybe we’ll start seeing some action on a governmental level.

Timothy Kincaid
September 21st, 2011 | LINK

T.J., watch out for those flying pigs.

Rob in San Diego
September 22nd, 2011 | LINK

Rest in Peace brother, I’m sorry we let you down while you slipped through the cracks.

Jamie
September 22nd, 2011 | LINK

Reilly, That’s unfortunately far too simplistic. The kid’s who are the most vulnerable wouldn’t hurt a fly. They are the kids who are ostensibly more “different”, more gentle and less confrontational, except for their words and that alone sometimes gets them in trouble. This beaituful little boy’s sister said it best: If more kids spoke up for these bullied kids and against bullies, their power is diminished. But, as she said, it has to be anyone and everyone who is witness to it. Too many kids who do seem fine endure a little chipping away at who they are every time they go out that door. This needs to stop. One life is too many and this lovely family who clearly accepted their only son will never be the same again.

Blair Martin
September 22nd, 2011 | LINK

Reilly: “An eye for an eye and soon the whole world will be blind.” (Mohandas Mahatma Ghandi)

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