Monday, October 18, 2010

Comments about National Coming Out Day, School Bullying, and Violence

On National Coming Out Day, four (4) assaults or incidents of school bullying have subsequently been reported to Kentucky Equality Federation's Discrimination, Hate Crimes, and School Bullying Committee.

As a result, Kentucky Equality Federation is developing a "youth mentor" program for national coming out day.  Kentucky's youth who wish to "come out" may discuss it with a LGBTI mentor prior to doing so. 

Statements about National Coming Out Day (taken on National Coming Out Day):

I think that "coming out" should be done on a person's own time and terms. I feel that National Coming Out Day can cause pressure to someone that is not ready to deal with all of the negativity that they could face. One of my friends was basically peer pressured into coming out on that day. Sure they had all the support and praise on that day, but they did not have a support system in place for the time after they had to live the rest of their life with their announcement. I think it can be a bit irresponsible, especially those that do not have family and friends to be there as a support system. - Dean Byrd, Treasurer and Board Secretary

I think this is a time for those of use that are out to let our voices be heard, that we will not tolerate hate. Be a walking billboard today tape a sign to your shirt with a statistic about gays teenagers and suicide. Yes we came out but there are so many others living in fear. Today is a day to let them speak through those of us who are out. - Ben "Poynter" Brannock, High School and University Outreach Director

It is my belief that anyone who is in the closet should only come out if they feel they are ready. Particularly with teens, bad timing could mean unwanted consequences. - Halyn Roth, Facebook Coordinator

Special Message from Bette Midler about the national suicides and school bullying:

As a mother, I am ashamed of all the parents who have failed to teach even the most basic human lessons to their children, "Live and let Live" and "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you." The normal, everyday kindness that we took for granted just a few years ago is a thing of the past, and I for one, mourn it deeply. Technology, the Internet, with its anonymity, have allowed people to behave like beasts, pouncing on the weak and howling with laughter when they inflict a wound, that only the strongest could survive. What are we doing to ourselves? How are we to survive as a nation, when hate seems to be the only thing that motivates us??

Four children are dead by their own hand because they just couldn't take any more. How many more are we going to sacrifice to the hyenas? Isn't it time to stop??

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