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Yet ANOTHER Teen Suicide This Week: Anti-Gay Bullying Blamed

by David Badash on January 21, 2011

in News

Post image for Yet ANOTHER Teen Suicide This Week: Anti-Gay Bullying Blamed

Fourteen year old Kameron Jacobsen of Monroe Woodbury High School in Orange County, NY, committed suicide after suffering taunts and harassment via Facebook. Two weeks earlier, another teen, Justin Dimino, a junior who was on the football team, also committed suicide.

Via MyFox New York:

Sources said that Kameron Jacobsen of Monroe Woodbury High School was tormented by Facebook bullies who taunted him about what they thought was his sexual orientation.

Principal David Bernsley said the sense of loss is excruciating and that they are doing their best to cope.

“Our hearts go out to the families,” Bernsley said. “We’re devastated as a community.”

For Jacobsen’s family, the grief is beyond measure. Even with his death, online entries still sting. His older sister, Kierten, pleaded that people stop writing “rest in peace” entries and posting personal information about her baby brother.

There are at least four Facebook pages devoted to remembering Kameron Jacobsen.

Jacobsen’s anti-gay bullying suicide, along with the tragic suicide of openly-gay, Miltona, Minnesota eighteen-year old Lance Lundsten this past weekend, are but just two of who knows how many anti-gay bullying suicides that appear to increase in number at the beginning of school semesters. You’ll remember the more than ten anti-gay bullying suicides that we reported last September, at the start of the back-to-school season.

School and the federal government must begin to do a better job addressing this, and we al need to remember that the American people believe, as do I, that ultimately, the seed of hate comes from our churches.

Sources: Teenager Kills Himself After Facebook Taunts: MyFoxNY.com

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{ 9 comments }

sixstring7 January 21, 2011 at 4:38 pm

"the seed of hate comes from our churches"

BRILLIANTLY PUT!

DaR33L January 21, 2011 at 5:34 pm

only brilliantly hateful itself… this type of gross generalizing is the same type of emotionally manipulative tactics used by all extremists… this statement is a seed of hate … c'mon.. no reason to resort to gross exaggeration to make a point… how horrible that you chose to spread hate while pretending to be reporting about it… shesh

David Badash January 21, 2011 at 7:31 pm

You see, on its face, what you right sounds just so "right." In fact, you haven't bothered to do your homework, and instead you rely on the typical conservative thought-process that allows you to let the attackers play the victim. If you had bother to read and comprehend the entire iece, and then associated links, you would know that "Sixty-five percent of Americans — a vast majority — blame churches for “higher rates of suicide among gay and lesbian youth,” such as the suicides that have shocked the country in recent months, according to a new poll just released by The Public Religion Research Institute."

You would also know that "The survey also finds that seventy-two percent of Americans believe “messages 
about 
the 
issue 
of 
homosexuality
 coming 
from
 places
 of 
worship 
contribute
 to negative
 views 
of 
gay 
and 
lesbian
 people.” Additionally, forty-three percent of Americans, a plurality, “think 
messages
 on
 the 
issue 
of
 homosexuality 
coming 
from
 America’s
 places 
of 
worship 
are
 generally 

negative.”

It's not spreading hate. The churches have already done that, and the American people agree. It's called spreading FACTS.

Shesh, indeed.

Lucy April 27, 2011 at 7:29 pm

Yeah, well learning from the church aren't dying, its the people they're bullying. It's not the churches fault, I agree, but if they don't tell the people they're preaching to that although in their opinion homosexuality is wrong, homosexuals are not bad people and should be respected like everyone else, they are indeed planting the seeds of hate in their disciples. Then those disciples go out and bully a homosexual to the point of suicide. It's true that churches aren't the blame of anti-gay bullying related suicides, if they aren't doing anything to stop them they are still refusing to throw a life jacket of forgiveness(although I believe there is nothing to forgive) to homosexuals drowning in a sea of hate. It is indirect murder that the church needs to realize. Once it is brought to their attention, not acting on their flaws would be murder, and which is worse in God's eyes, homosexuality or murder?

DaR33L January 21, 2011 at 7:45 pm

lolol… i am not a conservative, but an intellectually aware liberal… no matter how u dress up ur dichotomous mentality, you simply prove my point once again… CERTAIN churches have done this… not all churches… its like the old metaphor about throwing the baby out with the bath water… c'mon… think before u comment.. and stop spreading UR HATE… can u comment without generalizing?

David Badash January 21, 2011 at 9:45 pm

Again, you are commenting without reading or thinking. My comment was, "the seed of hate comes from our churches." That doesn't say "all churches." it says "churches." I stand by every word here, though I will apologize for the typos. And again, I said churches, not all churches, and I'll add the addition of other houses of worship. Note, I didn't say all houses of worship.

DaR33L January 21, 2011 at 9:58 pm

sigh, i have read u quite well… and I seem to be the only one between us that is actually thinking and not defending a poorly worded statement of hate… r u an atheist? agnostic? u seem to have quite a bit of anger toward ALL churches even though u do not say ALL churches, u choose to alienate those churches who do not condemn gay people… a better person would admit their mistake in spreading hate while writing about it… u have "stood by" ur offense to all those lovely people and churches (and places of worship) out there who are not prejudice, who teach true love and compassion… do u really think u can attract intelligent people of ANY political leaning with ur exaggerations?

varsitybball95 January 22, 2011 at 1:19 am

I'm an openly gay sophomore and I go to Monroe Woodbury High School. At least for me, it is one of the most welcoming communities out there for homosexual teenagers. We are only 40 minutes away from NYC and many of our teachers are openly homosexual. Over 3,000 students attend the school. I cannot speak for Kameron, because I never once heard that he was gay, that anyone perceived him as gay or that he was bullied. Clearly, as I am homosexual myself, I support the message that homosexual teens (and children! and adults! and bisexuals! and transgender!) should be accepted and made to feel comfortable in their communities.

However, I worry that unsubstantiated and sensationalized reports, such as the one you claim as your source, do a lot to negate the fact that depression and other mental/emotional factors can drive a teenager to suicide. These mental and emotional issues may or may not be related to external situations-let's try not to forget that. In any case, the point should not be to lay blame on anyone for this tragic death. The police who investigated both deaths have stated that neither is linked to bullying in any form. Let's not get so caught up in our own standpoint that we sensationalize stories to suit our own needs-or in the case of the original news station, from whom Fox picked up the story, to suit their need for a rating.

mmetzler91 January 22, 2011 at 7:04 pm

I agree with the other replies here. There is no reason to point the finger at religion in this particular instance. In other cases, sure, it might be appropriate to fix some of the blame on certain religious zealots who hold certain religious beliefs, but when you have a story like this, where not much information is available – and when all the information that is available suggests that BULLYING, not religious intolerance, is to blame – bringing up our churches is irrelevant and makes it sound like you're more interested in the blame game than in reporting this tragedy in a respectful way. Yes, some bullying may be the result of being raised in a household that promotes religious intolerance, but you're not in the proper position to be making that association in cases like this. If you're reporting the news, then stick to the facts, and keep your own opinion out of it. If you're writing an editorial, then don't disguise it as a breaking news report.

I'm not some close-minded conservative trying to come on here and tear down your site – I've been reading for four or five months, checking a few times each week, and back when I started reading, I found a lot of hope and encouragement in the items you posted here and the tone in which you reported news. Recently, however, I've been disappointed and discouraged by the tone of some of the items you post (such as this one) and the unnecessary and inappropriate finger-pointing that reads like a thinly-veiled temper tantrum. Harvey Milk, who spear-headed this "new civil rights movement" that you're reporting on now way back in the 1960s and 1970s, emphasized "giving 'em hope" – take his advice, and fight hate with hope, not with your own version of hate, no matter how justified you think your version is. Stop repeatedly blaming the same sources for all of our problems, and start suggesting REALISTIC ways that these sources need to change in order for our society to improve – then, start finding meaningful ways to act on these suggestions and rally others to do the same.

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