October 1, 2010

Rutgers Student Commits Suicide (After (Being Taped) (Having (Gay) Sex))?

dharun.jpgthis could go either way


CNN:

said to be devastated when his private sexual encounter with another man was secretly taped and streamed online...


I'll open by saying that, on the face of it, this is a tragic story.  There's the power differential, and the idea that a woman could be part of the bullying (for lack of a better word.)  The subtext that gay sex isn't sexy, but funny; and, of course, no matter what happened, suicide is horrible.

But while the media has clearly established the cause and the effect, it doesn't seem so clear when you follow the events.  The biggest inaccuracy is that he didn't just find out he was taped, he knew about it already.

I.

On 9/21, at 7:22 am, he writes on a message board, "so the other night..." and describes his roommate turning on a webcam, etc.  Dharun's twitter confirms the sex and the taping happened on Sunday, 9/19, between 6p and midnight.

However, he doesn't sound extremely upset; he talks about working things out with his roommate, his roommate isn't a bad guy, etc.

so the other night i had a guy over. I had talked to my roommate that afternoon and he had said it would be fine w/him. I checked his twitter today. he tweeted that I was using the room (which is obnoxious enough), AND that he went into somebody else's room and remotely turned on his webcam and saw me making out with a guy. given the angle of the webcam I can be confident that that was all he could have seen.

so my question is what next?

I could just be more careful next time...make sure to turn the cam away...
buttt...


I'm kinda pissed at him (rightfully so I think, no?)
and idk...if I could...it would be nice to get him in trouble
but idk if I have enough to get him in trouble, i mean...he never saw anything pornographic...he never recorded anything...


I feel like the only thing the school might do is find me another roommate, probably with me moving out...and i'd probably just end up with somebody worse than him....I mean aside from being an asshole from time to time, he's a pretty decent roommate...

the other thing is I that don't wanna report him and then end up with nothing happening except him getting pissed at me...


Then on 9/22, at 4:38 am-- ???-- he writes that he had asked his roommate to use the room again, but this time saw the webcam in advance.

so I wanted to have the guy over again.

I texted roomie around 7 asking for the room later tonight and he said it was fine.

when I got back to the room I instantly noticed he had turned the webcam toward my bed. And he had posted online again....saying...."anyone want a free show just video chat me tonight"...or something similar to that....

soooo after that.....

I ran to the nearest RA and set this thing in motion.....
we'll see what happens......

I haven't even seen my roommate since sunday when i was asking for the room the first time...and him doing it again just set me off....so talking to him just didn't seem like an option....

meanwhile I turned off and unplugged his computer, went crazy looking for other hidden cams....and then had a great time.


Someone writes back to him a minute later:

You may want to take a screencap of his twitter feed if you want to go the legal route just so you have some evidence of his activity.

oh haha already there baby


Then on 9/22 at 6:17am he writes

he seemed to take it seriously
he asked me to email him a written paragraph about what exactly happened...
I emailed it to him, and to two people above him...


Later that night he facebooks: "jumping off the gw bridge.  Sorry".  He apparently died around 9pm that night.

Students are already having protests at Rutgers; and we can be sure some politicians will be at some podiums.

I don't know what to make of this, but it seems to me considerably more complicated than "guy discovers he was taped and commits suicide, distraught."

Which, if it is, would mark this as another example of media distorting reality for the purpose of getting viewers, with the important consequence of social and political action resulting from a false premise.  "Statistics show that homophobia accounts for X suicides a year..."

Again, I don't know what happened, but what they say happened seems to be only a bit of the story. Maybe Rutgers finally got back to him and said, "nothing we can do"-- which makes this more about feeling abandoned than shamed.

One possibility, terrible as it may sound: what if he had wanted to attempt suicide not because he was distraught, but because it would punish his roommate?  It's not so unusual.  What if he instead chose to punish his roommate by killing him?

I am not accusing him of this and I am not even speculating that this is even true.  I am contrasting two media popular "competing narratives"  to show that what we think we know is very often what someone else wants to be true.  And once they've decided, you almost never get to change it.

 








Comments

I've been wondering this my... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 12:16 PM | Posted by solistrato: | Reply

I've been wondering this myself because everyone I am acquainted with online (via the FB and such) seems to be lining up in a Degeneres-approved manner to make this into a Tragic Teaching Moment, which is the readily-approved narrative, but reading those other excerpts changes everything.

Plus, there's such a disconnect between the 6:17 AM post and the later suicide update that I can only imagine a major confrontation with the roommate occurred, or something of that magnitude. But I can't imagine what that would have been if it was going to trigger a suicide attempt.

What was really bothersome is how readily people just leapt into the existing media framework. Even on Metafilter, people instantly slid into the "horrible oppressive homophobia claims another young life via bullying" narrative without a moment's notice. The fact that it might be more thorny than that didn't occur to anyone there. (Metafilter's really slid downhill, thanks to a userbase of quasi-professional victims ready to redress any challenge to perceived oppression, as long as it means staying steadfastly behind the keyboard.)

Just weird and profoundly revealing all around.

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Good points. As far as I c... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 12:22 PM | Posted by LauraL: | Reply

Good points. As far as I can tell there are 4 possibilities:

1) he was distraught as he realized the taping went further than he thought
2) when he attempted legal action he was not taken seriously and treated differently making him feel isolated/ashamed
3) the other one you mention - the decision to "attempt" suicide as punishment for his roommate with or without the intention to be successful
4) unrelated event that adds additional stress to the previous events / snowball effect

I hate how the news distorts everything to try to "make" it more "interesting."

~ Laura
http://coffeecounsel.wordpress.com/

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I don't think the reason pe... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 12:45 PM | Posted, in reply to solistrato's comment, by 300baud: | Reply

I don't think the reason people are leaping to the obvious connect-the-dots conclusion is purely the media template.

Oppressive homophobia definitely does claim young lives through bullying. And causes a lot more to think about it. If you have the slightest doubt of that, go watch some of the "It Gets Better" videos.

We're now at a point where the broader culture is starting to recognize that there is a problem, and that there has been for some time. Even absent any strong feelings, that over-matching of patterns is part of learning. And there's plenty of reason for strong feelings that would drive false positives.

Personally, I'm fine with erring on that side for a decade or two. Until this sort of horribleness has an incidence rate around that of kids being horrible generally, I would much rather have people overreact.

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I'm just curious as to why ... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 12:48 PM | Posted by DEstlund: | Reply

I'm just curious as to why these possibilities are being framed as distinct, perhaps even mutually exclusive. The obvious answer is that the media have isolated the most convenient narrative, but none of the alternatives necessarily negate the one the media has embraced, IMHO. Why couldn't all four of Laura's suggestions be the case? Why would it make bullying and harassment any less of an offense?

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I'm inclined to option no. ... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 12:49 PM | Posted by Amber: | Reply

I'm inclined to option no. 1, which has very little to do with the sexuality angle ... given the precedents for young people killing themselves in the wake of their sex tapes and nude photos gaining circulation, he might have gone from blase and annoyed to despairing once he realized (or even saw) exactly what was going out there.

But of course we can't know for sure, even if his ten-page suicide note is produced in the inevitable civil trial.

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"Oppressive homophobia defi... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 1:07 PM | Posted, in reply to 300baud's comment, by Paul: | Reply

"Oppressive homophobia definitely does claim young lives through bullying."

Yes, and white cops abuse black citizens, but that doesn't mean EVERYTIME a white cop arrests a black citizen it represents an example of abuse or racism. That's the point TLP is making. The story of homophobia was already "grooved" in our brains, and naturally the media interpreted anything involving a gay man as a "gay" issue story. A cognitive bias combined with incentive for ratings. Talk about patronizing: Can minorities exist independently of whatever quality makes them a minority? Or can a minority, for example, be treated rudely with no other reason than that the customer service representative is having a bad day?

Perhaps the roommate was lashing out at "white privilege"?

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Ahh, but here's the rub: do... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 1:08 PM | Posted, in reply to 300baud's comment, by solistrato: | Reply

Ahh, but here's the rub: do we actually have a pandemic, a wave, a raft of homophobia driving kids to suicide, or are we seeing specific incidents because that's the media narrative at the moment? In other words, is this distinct from "youth being horrible to other youth" or is our increased sensitivity to these cases a self-fulfilling prophecy because of the media stories?

Mandatory disclaimer: bullying is bad and should be actively resisted. But is it bullying specifically because they're gay, or is it just handy to have an excuse to bully with? Even if our poor youth wasn't gay, there would be plenty of fodder for any jackass to make his life a living hell. Bullies will call you a fag regardless of whether it's true. The fact that society is now publicly acknowledging that some teenage boys are in fact gay might be heightening that particular sensitivity.

I dunno. Obviously, the roommate and his lady accomplice are cretins of the lowest order and should get what's coming to them, but I also really wish that this kid had had the temperance and presence of mind to realize that suicide is never an option. If this was the last straw in a short lifetime of abuse, I'm quite sympathetic to him, but I can also be distraught and sad that instead of pushing through it and finding a way through this, he leapt off a bridge. Maybe it's because I'm seeing how overwhelmed I was by feeling when I was his age and am reacting accordingly, but I wish someone would have told him that it gets better if you hang on and get through it. Suicide is never an answer, and the fact that he posted about it on Facebook really makes me wonder where his head was at.

Fuck, man. No one wins on this one.

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*uh, folks... if thi... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 1:52 PM | Posted by neo: | Reply

*
uh, folks... if this had been, say... your heterosexual 18 year-old daughter who was videotaped & publicly outed... would that change any of your feelings about this?

just curious.

*

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Yeah, I wish we could help ... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 2:36 PM | Posted, in reply to solistrato's comment, by karen: | Reply

Yeah, I wish we could help young & old see that they can rework the narrative (the words in their brains) themselves - or even that there are people they can reach out to for help with doing just that.

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What message board are the ... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 3:01 PM | Posted by Jon: | Reply

What message board are the quotes from? Is there a link?

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Let's not forget about the ... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 3:06 PM | Posted by R: | Reply

Let's not forget about the 3rd man: the guy Tyler brought to his room. He was filmed also, and may have been way more upset about it than Tyler was.

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*"r says... may h... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 3:19 PM | Posted by neo: | Reply

*
"r says... may have been way more upset about it than Tyler was"

not upset enough to off himself, apparently... but point taken.

anyone see how rutgers is spinning this puppy?

"Rutgers is a community that is extraordinarily proud of its diversity and the respect its members have for one another."

c'mon... proud my ass. where's the respect for this kid?

they must be crapping themselves thinking about the impending civil suit.

*


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I hate to speculate too muc... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 3:27 PM | Posted by R: | Reply

I hate to speculate too much without the details, but what if Tyler was in this scenario:

- Tyler himself was comfortable with being gay, and slightly annoyed with being filmed. He was very into the guy he was seeing.
- Tyler's guy was not openly gay. He was inadvertently outed by either the video or Tyler's reporting of the problem.
- Either he breaks it off with Tyler, or it causes some severe damage in his own personal life. Tyler feels either enough loss or guilt to jump off the bridge.

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*"r says... I hat... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 3:47 PM | Posted by neo: | Reply

*
"r says... I hate to speculate too much without the details"

no... apparently you don't. just like most of the airheads in the msm.

here's a thought... maybe you could just drive around the "if your mother had wheels, she'd be a truck" school of debate.

even without the suicide... would you not have a problem with the egregious violation of privacy if this was your kid?

isn't that the issue here? who gives a crap who was into who? that's gossip.

*

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he never saw anything po... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 3:49 PM | Posted by Iris: | Reply

he never saw anything pornographic...he never recorded anything...

I feel like the only thing the school might do is find me another roommate, probably with me moving out...

That's someone saying they don't want to report a violation because no one's going to believe them. It's not long ago that a woman who reported sexual harassment lost her job while the perpetrator got to keep his.

From a news site: Ravi is charged with an additional two counts of invasion of privacy for trying unsuccessfully to broadcast his roommate in a second live sex scene on Sept. 21. [to the 148 followers of his now deleted Twitter account]

Did he know the broadcast was unsuccessful? Did he still believe there were no recordings?

meanwhile I turned off and unplugged his computer, went crazy looking for other hidden cams...

Also, I don't see what difference a couple of days make. Doesn't the suicide often happen days, weeks, even months after the traumatizing event? On the Dr. Phil show, Megan Meier's mother told that right before hanging herself, Megan had read some nasty comments on MySpace and turned to her mother, who said something like why did you go on MySpace, you should've known better. After years of bullying, the defining moment was her mother blaming her for what happened.

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"Bullies will call you a fa... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 3:54 PM | Posted, in reply to solistrato's comment, by brainchild: | Reply

"Bullies will call you a fag regardless of whether it's true."

You're kind of missing the obvious - the point is that calling someone a "fag" as an insult is very clearly saying that it doesn't get much worse than being a "fag". (And, really, calling homosexuals "fags" is a bit like calling Black people "lynch rope" or "burning cross" because of the root of the word - it's one of the more hate filled anti-homosexual slurs in many ways - "faggots" are bunches of sticks used as firewood, people accused of being homosexuals were burned around "witches" so that the flames of hell would burn hotter, or some such religious nonsense during one of the many inquisitions.)

To defend the use of this term as if it's not homophobic because it's a slur advanced against straight guys too is missing the point. The point is that what that slur says is that there's nothing worse than being "a fag". Just like using "gay" as an insult doesn't mean much to you if you haven't had people beat the crap out of you because you can't hide that you're gay.

As for the young adult in university - we can't know his whole story at this point and may never. Who knows how the whole thing escalated - the roommate was pretty obviously a serious asshole so who knows what happened once the guy he was trying to publicly humiliate started looking into taking action. Clearly there was a lot of online chat of all kinds around this drama, which makes it into a very social drama with an audience. Is any suicide as simple as the media (and people in general) like to paint it? Or is anything in reality as simple as the media tend to like to paint things?

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R - I had similar thoughts ... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 3:56 PM | Posted, in reply to R's comment, by karen: | Reply

R - I had similar thoughts - which led me to an idea that maybe we need to solve the two problems: the taping & bullying vs. the suicide/preventing more suicides like this, independently. To just kind of cut the cause & effect thread, which is tenuous & can be used to mislead (I'm thinking in a legal defense kind of way, but social manipulation works that way too.).

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If it's your daughter that ... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 3:57 PM | Posted, in reply to neo's comment, by Anonymous: | Reply

If it's your daughter that of course changes thing.

What if it was a heterosexual 18 year old girl who you have no specific connection to?

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*"anon says... Wh... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 4:04 PM | Posted by neo: | Reply

*
"anon says... What if it was a heterosexual 18 year old girl who you have no specific connection to?"

okay... it doesn't really matter whose kid it is.

here's a thought, folks... think back to the days of your initial awkward, fledgling sexual (hetero, homo, uni... whatever) experiences... and try imagine them being broadcast to the world.

remember... you're a hormone-soaked teenager. you don't think straight. you're still working on that self-esteem thing.

i'm in my 50's and i can conjure up a couple of bridge-worthy moments myself.

this wasn't like short-sheeting somebody's bed... these two idiots as good as pushed this kid off the ledge.

*

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I don't think the reason... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 5:39 PM | Posted, in reply to 300baud's comment, by Basil: | Reply

I don't think the reason people are leaping to the obvious connect-the-dots conclusion is purely the media template.

Oppressive homophobia definitely does claim young lives through bullying. And causes a lot more to think about it. If you have the slightest doubt of that, go watch some of the "It Gets Better" videos.

We're now at a point where the broader culture is starting to recognize that there is a problem, and that there has been for some time. Even absent any strong feelings, that over-matching of patterns is part of learning. And there's plenty of reason for strong feelings that would drive false positives.

Personally, I'm fine with erring on that side for a decade or two. Until this sort of horribleness has an incidence rate around that of kids being horrible generally, I would much rather have people overreact.

I totally disagree with that approach. The same thing has been done with rapes. To the point that today it's pretty much "the woman resents sex in the morning; you are a rapist", which makes the much more serious violent rapes harder t otake notice of -- all of the "rapes" that are semiconsentual drown out the violent nonconsentual rapes, thus making people take actual rape less seriously. If a woman says she was raped, do you immediately think of violent rape or date rape after she got herself drunk -- or do you possibly think she is just trying to get one over on her boyfriend?

Racism is kinda the same. Real racism is being denied a job or service in a restaurant. But recently there have been some claims that are just downright silly. Talkiing about "black holes" in a card that says "reach for the stars" is racist. So is calling the secondary harddrive of a computer the "slave drive" (which has been the term since there have been harddrives). Now people say racism and no one blinks because the term is used for almost anything. That isn't going to end racism because unless people take the problem seriously, they won't put forth much effort to solve the real racial problems that continue to this day.

That's the problem with deliberately flooding the society with false positives. Rather than make people take the problem more seriously, they actually start to think in terms of even the real cases as being the contrived variety. So if homosexual harassment goes in the same way as rape and racism, then it will be something people are less likely to take seriously becuase its most likely nothing. And so people will end up thinking that the cries of harrassment are nothing more than whining about everyday hardships. It won't end that way.

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But what if you do ask for ... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 5:42 PM | Posted, in reply to neo's comment, by karen: | Reply

But what if you do ask for real evidence for why he chose to kill himself? Or even real evidence that he did in fact write his "suicide post" & jump off the bridge? Since this is a site where narcissistic rage is often discussed, and I have personal experience with a pathological, that he committed suicide in this manner & over these events, is a conclusion I don't think the media-reported evidence supports.

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YEA NEW JERSEY/RUTGERS/ETC!... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 5:43 PM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

YEA NEW JERSEY/RUTGERS/ETC!
Oh wait... this is actually tragic, not something to be proud over. Sorry.

Now that is out of the way, MY FIRST THOUGHTS when I read about this story was that the conclusion (invented by the media: "homophobia and cyber bullying cause young man to jump the GWB)... I thought it just totally didn't follow the premise.

If you were so deeply in the closet that you would jump the GWB if discovered... why on earth would you have sex in your dorm room? Why would you invite a gay man to your dorm room and have sex with him there? Why would you tell your roommates that you needed the room for the night, full well knowing the nature of immature young men might be to jump in on you or watch you (hoping to see a naked girl, or alternatively to get their jollies by embarrassing you while you're getting off, etc).

There must have been much more to this story than being "outed" for a homosexual, because to be honest this kid wasn't putting all that much work into the closet. He didn't go across town under cover of night to a gay bar... he didn't get off in a bathroom or a park in the next city... he totally brought this gay man to his room and had sex with him there while EVERYONE who knows him was just doors away. It seems to me as if this kid really didn't care too much if people knew he was gay... not that he was telling the world but he wasn't going out of his way to hide it.


My thought was there is WAY more to this story and the media has completely invented the premise that the kid killed himself because he was outed.

My first thought was that he probably comes from a catholic family - italian name, vaguely irish appearance, probably catholic. He's probably totally out to himself, and out to his close friends, but he was probably terrified of his family finding out... so when the stuff was broadcast, he was afraid his family would see it, being that they are catholic nut jobs he knew he would be thrown out of the family. There is no proof of this at all, but it's the first thing I thought of. His behavior showed a lot of self acceptance (dating, having sex, not hiding it too much from his friends)... but all of a sudden he kills himself when it's on the internet, that to me implies there were a FEW people he didn't want to know. Most likely his family.

My second thought is he might have mental illness. He's a musician, he might be bipolar, he might be depressed. We don't know what this kid was going through personally. Sex one minute and suicide the next minute... is this some kind of psychiatric episode?

We will never know what really motivated this kid to kill himself, but it was certainly much more complex than "cyber bullying" and "Homophobia".

Everything you are saying - that the media is completely fabricating this story for viewers - I told my sister (hard core emotional devoted fanatic to Rutgers U). She didn't believe me. Good to know I'm not the only person who can see this nonsense for what it is.

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It is completely unfounded ... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 5:55 PM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

It is completely unfounded and irrational that the suicide was motivated by a desire to punish his roommate.

Jumping off the GWB is 100% lethal, or at least 100% likely to cause severe permanent injury. He didn't cut his wrists like a whiney 15 year old, he jumped off a fucking bridge. If this were about manipulation like a borderline, he would have chosen a much less lethal method. Sounds to me like he thought his life was over for some reason and he did the logical thing - kill his physical body.

Furthermore why would he care about his roommate enough to waste this much effort into "punishing" him? That suggests some kind of emotional attachment, that this kid was impoirtant to him, which he obviously wasn't at all. The roommate is an immature asshole like 95% of the other guys at RU, or 95% of men between the ages of 17-21 for that matter.

I think the most reasonable speculation is that the kid wasn't in the closet (to himself, to his close friends), since his behavior wasn't super secretive (having sex in your room, um hello?) but there might have been one or two or a few people he DID NOT want to know AT ALL. Most likely his family. I would not be surprised to discover they are hard core conservative catholics and would cut his life out from under him (money, support, love) if he were gay.

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"because it would punish hi... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 6:02 PM | Posted by randy: | Reply

"because it would punish his roommate"

this could well be the case. myself, when i'm down in that hole, feeling suicidal, a lot of it is about revenge.

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I agree with your point tha... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 6:07 PM | Posted, in reply to DEstlund's comment, by LauraL: | Reply

I agree with your point that the 4 possibilities I mentioned are not mutually exclusive. Not only that, but suicide/depression/anxiety are usually multidimensional problems. But, the big thing is that these issues tend to be more complex than the media wants to make them out to be.

http://coffeecounsel.wordpress.com/

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SOrry 300baud, but bullying... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 6:10 PM | Posted, in reply to 300baud's comment, by Anonymous: | Reply

SOrry 300baud, but bullying is bullying and it doesn't matter if it is because you are gay, or because you are an outcast. Kids kill themselves over BULLYING, whether or not it has anything to do with being gay.

I reject the idea that being bullied for being gay is intrinsically worse than being bullied for other reasons. WHen you are a young child, chronic and severe bullying can destroy you. I was bullied TERRIBLY when I was a child and it contributed significantly to the problems I later had (and still do have although are obviously much better now). I was not bullied for being gay.

I think focusing on the gay angle of bullying completely misses the real point - allowing a child to be chronically fucking bullied is completely inexcusable. What were those lazy ass tenured teachers doing? OH thats right, ignoring the problem, sitting on their fat asses.

You know what the teachers did about my bullying? They joined in. Because I was a weak kid, a weird kid, an outcast kid, and they said "hey, this is fun, lets join in with the sixth graders!"

The problem with bullying isn't that we don't accept homosexuals. In polite normal society we accept homosexuals. Kids on the other hand are feral unsocialized little beasts who will attack anyone for any sort of difference... and sorry but homosexuality is always going to be different. You can't get kids to accept homosexuality, because children are programmed to be lemming-like monsters who destroy the other. It's part of the development of identity. At that stage of development you are hyperaware of group affiliations, thus differences. Before you can develop an identity you need to first figure out who you are and where you belong, and that includes a primordial stage of sniffing out "differnces" and making very strong group affiliations.

Since the nature of children is to be cruel monsters toward those who fail to assimilate well, it serves NO PURPOSE to make this about" homosexuality", because you can't eliminate the fact that homosexuality is a form of group difference.

The only instructive and useful thing to do is to see this for what it is - the group-seeking nature of children being completely unchecked and unsocialized by adults who are supervising them. It is up to the adults taking care of these children to socialize them, teach them what is and is not proper behavior, to punish them when they act like antosocial little monsters.

But, this will not occur when your teachers (and parents) are a bunch of unsocialized, emotionally underdeveloped, zero identity having non humans. When your teachers and parents are children themselves, stunted and irresponsible.


This has nothing to do with homosexuality and everything to do with the fact our adults never developed into real adults. Our teachers are lazy spoiled government money siphons who don't do their jobs. Our parents are fat useless children who are apathetic about their crotch droppings sociopathic behavior.

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Um, if it was an 18 year ol... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 6:18 PM | Posted, in reply to neo's comment, by Anonymous: | Reply

Um, if it was an 18 year old heterosexual girl, she would have nothing to be "outed" over. Do you mean embarrassed of a tape involving her having sex with a man? People kill themselves when they feel something has happened to them that they can't possibly recover from... I would assume she had reasons to believe that her life was over, probably ultra religious parents who could not accept her for having sex on camera or something like that.

If it was simply shame from the tape, with no reason to believe her parents or family or loved ones would reject her, I would think that demonstrated mental instability and an excessive feeling of shame.

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I also think that it is unl... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 6:19 PM | Posted, in reply to Anonymous's comment, by LauraL: | Reply

I also think that it is unlikely that he truly wanted to punish his roommate Anonymous. However, it is a possibility that also couples with the attention seeking/cry for help aspect of some suicides. Not a likely option, but not one that can be ruled out completely until more information is provided. For instance Silvia Plath a famous poet, attempted suicide a number of times and wrote about how it made her feel (the attention/power/etc) and it was thought that she intended the attempt but not the success...which she eventually achieved.

The important factor of suicide is that in order to attempt it the person is emotionally and rationally compromised. So its' very nature is an irrational act. (Just playing devil's advocate here, as I stated I think the punishment option is extremely unlikely but can't be ruled out yet.)

http://coffeecounsel.wordpress.com/

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I think people need to real... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 6:33 PM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

I think people need to realize something. When people kill themselves for non-psychiatric reasons (i.e. mania, depression, psychosis, drug-induced)... the impetus for suicide is a logical perception that their life is over. This almost always means one of two things:

1) Overwhelming shame (mental pain) or physical pain...
and/or
2) The logical expectation to be abandoned by your loved ones, i.e. the perception are now totally alone in the world, a complete loss of any form of emotional social and financial support... with no perception of being able to survive the loss.

When you kill yourself, you are basically saying "My life is over. I have nothing left to live for. I cannot recover from this. The only answer is to kill my body."

It must involve a major, major loss, with no perception of available resources to cope with it.

When children kill themselves... assuming the cause is non-psychiatric, the first place you need to look is the parents (the relationship the child has with the parent) because that is the primary source of support a child has.

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The difference is sylvia pl... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 6:42 PM | Posted, in reply to LauraL's comment, by Anonymous: | Reply

The difference is sylvia plath almost certainly had borderline personality disorder, a condition where the individual has intense emotional perceptions and reactions. She may have had other illnesses but she was clearly a borderline - the obsessive and irrational, clingy, unstable relationships, the repeated suicidality, she had strong borderline features. These people often attempt suicide, feign suicide, think of suicide, because they have no internal resources to cope with their extreme emotional responses. The primary problem with a borderline person is that they have VERY STRONG emotional reactions and NO RESOURCES to modulate them. Suicidal gestures are just the symptoms, and sometimes they are successful (but that's usually only after maaaany attempts that are non-lethal).

This young man is not demonstrating your typical borderline behavior. He jumped off a bridge. We are assuming it is his first suicidal attempt. There is no ambivalence about it. He wanted to die. He isn't emotionally manipulating his boyfriend. He said to himself, for reasons we will never know, "my life is over and I HAVE to die" and he did it. He didn't slit his wrists, swallow pills, scream and cry in front of his boyfriend with bleeding wrists. He didn't call his mother crying after swallowing a bottle of ativan. He left a short note and jumped a bridge and made no attempt to try to survive. Jumping off a bridge is lethal. Anyone who jumps off a bridge really, really does want to end their life.

I don't think all suicides are irrational acts. There are certainly some instances where a person has an accurate perception that their life is over - for example, when hitler killed himself, that wasn't irrational at all. HE was surely going to be experiencing a much worse fate if he didn't off himself.

And, there are cases where a person's perceptions aren't entirely irrational. If we assume this kid will be rejected by his family if they discover he his homosexual, it is undoubtedly true that his life may become very very very hard for who knows how long, maybe forever. It's possible he could recover from the loss of being completely abandoned by his family, but it's also possible he could end up homeless, drop out of college due to a lack of financial support, have no where to go, etc. Depending on how strong emotionally this kid is, he may have decided it would be better to die than face that fate.

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Semiconsensual? Hot, is tha... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 7:03 PM | Posted, in reply to Basil's comment, by Anonymous: | Reply

Semiconsensual? Hot, is that like semi-pregnant?

Is semiconsensual where in which consent could not be given, but the guy had sex with the passed out drunk girl anyway? Um, that's not semiconsensual. That's nonconsensual, asshole.

There is a big difference between a girl fabricating a rape story (I am mad at you, regret I had sex with you, so now I am going to call you a rapist)... and the so called "semiconsensual" rapes (involving drugging consciousness with alcohol or other substances so that consent can't be given ) because those ARE TRUE RAPES.

All rape is not violent, abduction in an alley or park or whatever. Rape is still rape if you went on a date and the guy drugs you with excessive alcohol or other drugs so that you can't really resist or flat out pass out. How is that not rape? Rape doesn't necessarily include violence. What defines rape is a lack of consent. And it's very clear; consent is or is not given. If it is not given, it is rape.

When a girl has consensual sex and then later regrets it, that is not rape. That is a false accusation of rape. This is also very clear.

The fact that some girls falsely accuse guys of rape does not mean the answer is to define "rape" as only involving violent rape / abduction. Rape is having sex with someone, with a lack of consent. End of story. False accusations of rape are a problem, but it has nothing to do with the very real crime of non-consensual rape.

Semiconsensual doesn't exist. There is or is not consent.

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Am I the only one that does... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 7:05 PM | Posted by Paul: | Reply

Am I the only one that doesn't think this is a case of bullying? I'm not condoning what the roommate did, but is it really bullying? If his roommate was bringing 'home' a girl, would we think it was bullying for him to covertly film it? Inappropriate, yes. But bullying?

I dunno, it just doesn't all add up and while what the roommate did was wrong and (hopefully) he regrets it sincerely and OF COURSE the suicide is tragic. But if this had happened to a hetero-male or female for that matter, would there be such outrage?

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This young man is not de... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 7:14 PM | Posted by Half Canadian: | Reply

This young man is not demonstrating your typical borderline behavior. He jumped off a bridge.

That isn't far off for men who attempt suicide. Women attempt it more often, men complete it more often.

Up front, I agree with Anonymous at 6:10. The Lord of the Flies is a far better description of human nature than The Noble Savage. People are bastard covered bastards with a bastard filling and bastard coating, particularly when they are younger.

That said, this young man experienced a horrible event, but this isn't the first time, nor the last time that something like this will happen. (look up My Very Worst Roommate) I feel bad for the life he lived. But there is no evidence that his roommate was anything but self-centered. I'm not ready to condemn him to the 9th level for this (besides, I'd get annoyed if my roommate kept having people over for sex).

I'd like to know what records Rutgers has about this student's complaint.

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randy - I wouldn't assume t... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 7:14 PM | Posted, in reply to randy's comment, by Anonymous: | Reply

randy - I wouldn't assume that everyone considers suicide for revenge just because you've considered suicide for that reason. For me it was quite the opposite, I didn't consider suicide to "get back at" anyone and it wasn't about anyone else, it was about how I was feeling (suicidal). It was how it would effect other people and the people who care about me that made suicide not an option. It just seems like a shitty thing to do to people I love or others in general - sure it may mean I don't suffer anymore but I'd be creating more suffering for others so facing my fears and sadness seemed like a much better option. It was.

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give me a break and check y... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 8:27 PM | Posted by anonymous: | Reply

give me a break and check your privilege. if you've been through the experience of growing up queer, it's offensive to witness people debating the implications of a single incident rather than looking at the entire surrounding culture that lead to a, culmintation, of sorts. If your right to existence is brought into question day after day after day after day, if you have to check your behavior for fear of bashing or reprisal, ask yourself, wouldn't you get tired as well? Not tired 'of it', just... tired.

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"jumping off the gw bridge.... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 8:52 PM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

"jumping off the gw bridge. Sorry" sounds a lot like the kind of note that a murderer would write for him in a hurry. Do you have any idea how many people leave their computer logged in to Facebook 24 hours a day?

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Re: etymology of "fag", tha... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 9:20 PM | Posted by Maureen: | Reply

Re: etymology of "fag", that's just not true. Someone younger or weaker "fagged" for you at an English public school -- ie, they acted as your unofficial servant or caddy, fetching and carrying items like faggots for your study room fire. Given the sorts of things that happened at English public schools with no girls around, it's fairly clear where the modern meaning of the word came from. So yeah, it's insulting, but not at all in the way you're taking it.

I don't know why people have this obsession with making words (especially insults) have worse etymology than they really have. Someday, somebody's going to claim that "Big Mac" was the nickname of a horrific pedophilic serial killer and rapist which McDonalds' wanted to celebrate -- and people will BELIEVE it.

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It's not bullying at all. T... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 10:21 PM | Posted, in reply to Paul's comment, by Anonymous: | Reply

It's not bullying at all. The media fabricted this whole thing. It has nothing to do with bulling and little to do with homosexuality, IMO.

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Anon 8:27... look I hate to... (Below threshold)

October 1, 2010 10:37 PM | Posted, in reply to anonymous's comment, by Anonymous: | Reply

Anon 8:27... look I hate to break this to you, but being a gay male is not the ONLY way to be a hated outcast. Before you go and tell us we have "no idea" what it's like, let me say, trust me I do.

I'm tired of this victim schtick, races and religions and sexualities try to pull. Get over yourselves. If you are a minority, you are going to suffer cruelty at the hands of children. I am anon 6:10 and let me say this: you're not fucking special, you're just a weirdo and so the kids smell it like a shark smells blood and they target you, like a primitive animal wriggling toward the light, children line up in formation and identify with groups and ostricize those who do not fit the mold in an attempt to become human.

It's such a perverse form of narcissism, to view yourself as a special fucking victim with special challenges. You're a fucking weirdo. If you are a man who acts effeminate and sexually is attracted to men, that makes you weird. It's not wrong, but you are undoubtedly strange, you do not fit the mold. There's nothing wrong with it, but it's weird... and so kids operating with a brain stem, little beasts, animals, sub-humans, primordial humans, swamp creatures like the uruk hai will seek you out to destroy you.
Because you are different and it fosters their fledgling identities to do so.

If you are a weird person, in some way, in many ways, expect to deal with this.
You aren't special for being weird.

I have dealt with horrible behavior from children as a child easily rivaling if not exceeding what your average obviously gay child goes through, and I don't view myself as this special minority that has it so incredibly tough. Just accept it and deal with it.

My life became much easier and made more sense when I was able to look at myself and find fault in why these things happened to me. Rather than focusing on everyone else and everything else as being unfair, and me being this special person who is being targeted unjustly, I looked at the situation from a more objective position. I'm a fucking weirdo, I was an obvious target for abuse. I've always brought out the lemming abuser in people, and still do, because I behave very differently from normal people. Anyone and anyone with a bullying instinct gravitates to me, and this is true even today now that I am 28 years old. Adults in office cubicles talk about me when I am not around.

And it's because I"m a weirdo, and I act weird. I can't help that, but it helps me to understand why it happens. I"m not special, I'm just different, and people with a bullying instinct become almost crazed by my presence, like a shark smelling blood.

I don't blame myself, but I see the logic in it - weirdos and outcasts and different people to unsocialized, undeveloped, emotionally stunted bullies are like blood to a shark. The bully can't help it because his immature brain and lack of a true self causes him to seek out and attempt to destroy people like myself.

Think about it this way. Lets imagine a utopian world where homosexuals are entirely accepted. Do you really think the problem is solved? Or is it more likely that some other group will take the pressure?

When it became taboo to call blacks niggers, we simply started calling arabs towel heads. There is always going to be some types of outcasts that serve as a pressure valve for the need of a primitive identity, a group affiliation on the part of children and emotionally stunted adults.

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I suppose that the frame of... (Below threshold)

October 2, 2010 12:32 AM | Posted by R. Kevin Hill: | Reply

I suppose that the frame of this discussion makes it seem naive to think that the broad outlines of the Approved Narrative are essentially correct, but I think that two factors are being overlooked which are more than sufficient to save it. First, why assume that the unconcerned tone he adopts before a sympathetic audience is the real reaction, or the only one? However much he may have felt compromised by what had occurred, we wouldn't have wanted to compound it by having friends in the sympathetic audience telling him not to be such a wuss. This, btw, would seem to explain apologizing, though of course there would be all sorts of people he might want to apologize to. If he was concerned enough with how he was perceived by others to be willing to kill himself to avoid shame, then I don't see why he wouldn't be willing to fake causalness and strength before an audience of supporters, the better to win their admiration and support, or at least not risk turning it into criticism. Second, there seems to be little indication in the earlier messages of an awareness that the images would become available to the entire world. If he initially thought that it was merely the roommate who was peeking, this was someone he knew well, and whom he knew knew about his sex life. But discovering subsequently that anyone on planet earth could know may have changed everything: his mind might've raced forward to thinking of whoever it might be that he would least like to see him that way (family? another romantic interest?), and whatever social compartmentalization he might've been orchestrating suddenly seemed to collapse. This sounds plausible enough to me, and it's only a slightly more complicated version of the Approved Narrative, and one consistent with the anomalous messages.

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Homosexuality is still acti... (Below threshold)

October 2, 2010 12:39 AM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

Homosexuality is still actively discriminated against in our society, with little recourse. Disregard being disowned by his family, what if he had dreams of joining the armed forces.

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Hey Anon 10:37 PM - If you ... (Below threshold)

October 2, 2010 12:40 AM | Posted by karen: | Reply

Hey Anon 10:37 PM - If you ever decide that narrative of weirdness and ease in life via "find(ing) fault" isn't working for you, there are competent pros out there who can help you rewrite it. Heck, even read up on the tag line of this site ("Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, daruber muss man schweigen") and keep coming back to the posts to see examples in action. Note, I'm not saying it'll be "easy", only possible.

The thing bullies (and marketers) pick up on & exploit is not simple differences, it's pride & desire (in the mob) & shame & lack of power/ability to defend oneself or get away (in the victim) &, of course, fear. Basically any cognitive groove that you've got started, even cognitive grooves that work, even strengths (like values), someone who wants something via you will tap into and use it. Since I'm not a nihilist, I don't think one needs to get rid of the cognitive grooves that work, but rather be aware of them and protect oneself from manipulation through them.

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Your response made you soun... (Below threshold)

October 2, 2010 1:22 AM | Posted, in reply to karen's comment, by Anonymous: | Reply

Your response made you sound like such a self righteous arrogant psuedointellectual asshole. I imagined a female version of TLP. 40s-50s professional completely out of touch with reality, hung up on her theories about how people think and work.

I have emotionally matured to a point where bullies can't touch me, thank you very much. I have something they don't have, and that's fucking indifference to society. I'm not antisocial but I realize that popularity and acceptance and assimilation are ridiculous illusions, distractions from being in touch with your true self.

It sure is nice that you've decided bullies target emotionally vulnerable people. It's nice that you've decided objective oddness has nothing to do with it. TOO FUCKING BAD this idea is completely at odds with fucking reality. In the real world, the one i occupy, the one you look at a million miles below from your e-ivory tower, in this real world bullies pick on people who stutter, who have limps, who are too fat, too thin, too tall, too short, too stupid, too intelligent, too masculine, too feminine, black, white, brown, etc.

It sure would be nice if your TLP inspired idea about ego / identity deficiency being the cause of bullying was real. Then that means EVERYONE would have an even shot of being bullied! The beautiful cheerleader, the football jock, all of these characters would be targets for bullying because they all have very clear and gaping ego deficiencies, shame, pride, and are easily manipulated. But you know what? In the real world those people are never bullied, because they perfectly fit the mold of an ideal human, at least to our caveman brains.

No, it just so happens it's the slow kid with a limp or the fat fuck or the lisping artistic boy who get picked on, 100% of the time. Oddness can't possibly be the common link, nope, obviously Karen the armchair PhD figured it out... it's narcissism.

You retard.

Sorry too disgusted to rant more.

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One problem with that: "Opp... (Below threshold)

October 2, 2010 1:38 AM | Posted, in reply to 300baud's comment, by Dave: | Reply

One problem with that: "Oppressive homophobia" might exist at the University of Riyadh, but this happened at Rutgers, which, when I went there in the early '90s, was considered the Berkeley of the East politically.

Then again, the most recent issue of the alumni magazine proudly noted how much more diverse Rutgers has become since then, by way of comparing the top 10 student last names in 1990 and 2009.

It could be that much of this increased diversity comes from recent immigrants from places with less tolerant attitudes toward homosexuality. If so, it would be a case of liberal multiculturalism biting itself in the ass.

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"here's a thought, folks... (Below threshold)

October 2, 2010 1:59 AM | Posted, in reply to neo's comment, by Iris: | Reply

"here's a thought, folks... think back to the days of your initial awkward, fledgling sexual (hetero, homo, uni... whatever) experiences... and try imagine them being broadcast to the world."

You saying that made me think that what if he didn't have such "a great time", but was somehow humiliated by his partner and made to believe the whole thing was broadcast live?

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But actually, the thoughts ... (Below threshold)

October 2, 2010 2:15 AM | Posted, in reply to Anonymous's comment, by karen: | Reply

But actually, the thoughts and analysis you attribute to me aren't true. They are inaccurate. They don't start accurately, and they don't lead to the right conclusions. Have a good night.

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Good point. The kids involv... (Below threshold)

October 2, 2010 4:02 AM | Posted, in reply to Dave's comment, by Anonymous: | Reply

Good point. The kids involved were your typical indian elitist snobs so ubiquitous at RU. If these were properly brainwashed white cattle, I don't think things would have gotten as out of hand.

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Oppressive homophobia de... (Below threshold)

October 2, 2010 4:39 AM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

Oppressive homophobia definitely does claim young lives through bullying. is like saying that muslim jihad claimed the young lives of some suiside bombers.
These gay unstables killing themselves are the reason and the fuel of the said homophobia, which is nothing else but some people wishing to stay away from unstable and unreliable ones.

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Before I even read the arti... (Below threshold)

October 2, 2010 5:39 AM | Posted by Uropeeun: | Reply

Before I even read the article - thank you doc for writing about this, I had hoped you'd comment.

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Ok, now that I read the art... (Below threshold)

October 2, 2010 5:49 AM | Posted by Uropeeun: | Reply

Ok, now that I read the article...

I can imagine he was hurting a lot more about it than he let on. He tried to keep cool but obviously it was important to him that nothing pornographic would be recorded and distributed.

And

jumping off the gw bridge. Sorry

sounds as if something that seemed irreversible to him had happened in the meantime.

From experience I can tell you that "irreversible" as a reason beats "punishing" every time.

Unfortunately the only irreversible thing is death.

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Maureen - I'm quite willing... (Below threshold)

October 2, 2010 9:00 AM | Posted, in reply to Maureen's comment, by Anonymous: | Reply

Maureen - I'm quite willing to do a bit of research and to expand my knowledge and understanding (and admit that what I read or learned previously may not be correct...you know, that I was...gasp...wrong...the sin of all sins apparently). You may well be right about "faggot" not being related to witch burnings but your etymological claims aren't proven either and if it is English in origin (and not Yiddish) there's a connection to bundles of sticks. I love the way you accuse others of making shit up and then make claims that you're right about something that is actually ambiguous (meaning you're just clinging to your chosen etymology that is also unproven). Pot meet kettle, seriously.

Whatever the case, the word is designed and intended to be demeaning when used to denote homosexuality and often precedes acts of physical violence by the kinds of people who use it as a slur. Anyway, at the end of the day it's not the word that's the problem, it's the ideas and emotions (and xenophobia) attached to it. Queers have been reclaiming "faggot" for ages now, that doesn't take the sting out of it for people who've had the crap beaten out of them or been terrorized by violent homophobes while being called faggot. Humour is so much better than tight arsed WASPy PC responses that only hide xenophobia underneath a veneer of politeness. (And both approaches to words - the reclaiming of derogatory terminology and PC censorship emerged in the 80s. The first was generated within the communities in question, the PC censorship approach was a top down one and was basically just pretending that xenophobia doesn't exist if you just don't say it out loud...how WASPy is that!) However, you have the same issues with reclaiming words that have been used to denigrate queers as there are with words like "nigger". When a word is reclaimed context and intent become critical (meaning is at least partially dependent upon who is using the word) - some people find this very confusing, particularly people who hide their xenophobia from themselves and attempt to hide it from others and simply don't talk about these things with the people concerned.

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Once again this simply prov... (Below threshold)

October 2, 2010 9:34 AM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

Once again this simply proves that the media prefers simplistic narratives over the complexity of reality.

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What if they had been readi... (Below threshold)

October 2, 2010 3:23 PM | Posted by L: | Reply

What if they had been reading books at school instead of fucking or taping?

as this other blogger points out: http://melvin-udall.livejournal.com/995791.html

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I find it interesting no on... (Below threshold)

October 2, 2010 3:29 PM | Posted by David: | Reply

I find it interesting no one would refer to the young man who committed suicide by name- Tyler Clementi. Let me include the names Seth Walsh, Asher Brown and Billy Lucas and their suicides in September of 2010. You'd have to google them in order to move beyond what you feel to encounter what simply is.

I find it deplorable that a great many posters' speculations are designed to move the topic away from the subject of homophobia and beat the drum of the majority "suffering" from the slings and arrows of outrageous political correctness. Sob. Here's some inconvenient facts- to call someone or something gay is to invoke one of the most demeaning words in young america's lexicon. Homophobia is alive and well in America, institutionalized in our laws, in the military and in the majority of christian churches in America. You think youth are immune to these exemplars? And some of you want to talk about etymology. No wonder. It's so much safer than the actual, everyday harm of having a sexual orientation which is used, at best, as a dismissive, disapproving slur and at worst, as documented victims of hate crimes.

From further coverage by the dreaded media: "In the days since Clementi's death, a series of tweets and Internet postings have revealed that Clementi's sexual orientation may have been an issue with his roommate, Dharun Ravi, from the start." No shit. It evidently was significant enough for him to do everything in his power to publicize to the world his overwhelming fascination with gay sex.

Already mentioned, which I would second, is the fact it makes complete sense Christini would initially, at least, try to adopt an attitude of indifference or appear to "get" the joke. Who wants to reveal feelings of being hurt or ridiculed or threatened, especially at that age? What the dreaded media presentation doesn't reveal is how many people, at the point of the initial tweet, stood up and said "stop this or we'll report you." This would bring up another narrative, peer group passivity in the face of bullying. Read the literature. Bullying is more often directed at those weaker, those in "out groups," and like it or not, sexual minorities are oftentimes targeted.

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Here's some background info... (Below threshold)

October 2, 2010 3:58 PM | Posted by David: | Reply

Here's some background info (omg ... truthiness!) on college harrassment based on sexual orientation. It comes from a large (n=6000) poll of students nation wide: • A quarter of respondents reported experiencing harassment. More than 80 percent of those said sexual orientation was the reason. • Just under 40 percent of transgender respondents reported harassment and 87 percent of them blamed their gender identity or expression. • A third of those surveyed have seriously considered leaving their institution because of the challenging climate. • More than half said they hide their sexual or gender identity to avoid intimidation. • More than a third reported they fear for their physical safety.

I know, just more media distortion ...

http://www.edgeboston.com/index.php?ch=news&sc=&sc2=features&sc3=&id=110803

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Congratulations on your tru... (Below threshold)

October 2, 2010 5:20 PM | Posted, in reply to David's comment, by Anonymous: | Reply

Congratulations on your truthiness!

You are clearly misinterpreting Alone's article. He is saying that there is a (significant) part of the story that is not being reported on. He is not saying anything about how often or rarely people are harassed, or for what reasons they are harassed.

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I haven't followed all the ... (Below threshold)

October 2, 2010 6:42 PM | Posted by R. Kevin Hill: | Reply

I haven't followed all the preceding discussion closely, but as concerned as I am about the welfare of members of the LGBT community, and as disapproving as I am about homophobia, homophobia is not defined as actions which cause harms to members of that community, or even actions meant to cause harms to a person who happens to be in that community, or even actions meant to cause harms to a person known by the person causing the harm to be in that community. Example: if one person robs another and they are of discernibly different races, that doesn't make the crime *automatically* a hate crime, because there must be the relevant intent. I'm not sure why no one seems to have said this yet, but we simply don't know *what* the perpetrators' intent was, and the facts that we have thus far really don't tell us much. Even if we assume that the Clementi's suicide had something to do with disclosure of his being gay, it still doesn't follow that the crime (which is already serious enough and can lead to a punishment *greater* than that which you can get for negligent homicide in some states, since there could be a $30,000 fine on top of the possible 5 years for the class three felony, a term of imprisonment in line with negligent homicide, also typically a class three felony, plus one's name on the Sex Offenders registry [and I'm NOT saying that's excessive--I'm *fine* with it]) was motivated by a hatred of gayness. I think there's a big assumption going on here that because the outcome is the same as in, say, the Matthew Shepard case, that the motivation was too. Epistemic humility would ask us to say "well, maybe; we need more information." Unless that's true by definition. But then we have to draw the same inference that all, say, black on white crime is "hate crime" too, an inference I decline to draw.

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Congratulations on your can... (Below threshold)

October 2, 2010 6:52 PM | Posted, in reply to Anonymous's comment, by David: | Reply

Congratulations on your candor, anonymous! Please re-read my posts ... I was addressing viewer posts within this particular diary. This can be ascertained by my lack of reference to Alone or TLP and my explicit referencing of "a great many posters' speculations."

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Hey tLP?Could you ... (Below threshold)

October 2, 2010 7:00 PM | Posted by een: | Reply

Hey tLP?

Could you provide cites for the Twitter feeds, postings on boards, etc?

If we're going to question what is apparently a flawed narrative it'd be nice to be able to point to the actual posts when people question our probing...of the narrative.
heh.

Seriously though.
If there's any truth to what you've posted let's get the links and spread them far and wide before we have to endure a Stop the Self-Killing Gay Telethon featuring Lady GaGa and that kid from GLEE.

Full-disclosure...I've watched GLEE from the start and like it. Even if it's a little heavy-handed and cliched at times.

een

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"jumping off the gw bridge.... (Below threshold)

October 2, 2010 7:24 PM | Posted by termm: | Reply

"jumping off the gw bridge. Sorry" sounds a lot like the kind of note that a murderer would write for him in a hurry. Do you have any idea how many people leave their computer logged in to Facebook 24 hours a day?"

Scary. Attending college/living in a college town, I know how true this is. Every Saturday and Sunday morning you can expect to see a few ridiculous, self deprecating facebook statuses from people who drunkenly passed out and their drunken friends wrote them a demeaning status. Relevantly, 99% of the time the status is about how much the person "loves cock/ is gay" or something of that sort.

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In your hurry to shoot down... (Below threshold)

October 3, 2010 3:07 AM | Posted by Shannon: | Reply

In your hurry to shoot down the "Media Narrative" you left out some pertinent info like his other posts to that message board like this one...

He added at 9:28 a.m. that day, that "I feel like it was 'look at what a fag my roommate is' ... and the fact that the people he was with saw my making out with a guy as a scandal whereas i mean come on ... he was SPYING ON ME ... do they see nothing wrong with this? unsettling to say the least."

Douchebag!! Don't leave out bits and pieces to further your bullshit agenda. I think the fucking kid deserves more than that much respect in his death.

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Shannon?You wrote ... (Below threshold)

October 3, 2010 9:34 AM | Posted by een: | Reply

Shannon?

You wrote the following was redacted from the blogger's post...
"I feel like it was 'look at what a fag my roommate is' ... and the fact that the people he was with saw my making out with a guy as a scandal whereas i mean come on ... he was SPYING ON ME ... do they see nothing wrong with this? unsettling to say the least."

Sounds like a guy who's annoyed and a more than a little pissed off at what a douchebag his room-mate was. How do you go from that to wanting to end it all and jump off a bridge?

Just seems that if that posting you included is correct there's something missing in regards to what happened.

sincerely,


een

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What about the perpetrators... (Below threshold)

October 3, 2010 10:06 AM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

What about the perpetrators' narcissism? And narcissistic cruelty and self absorption expressed by using another as an object of ridicule and a means to assert one's (clearly false on some level) heterosexual identity? How is this not about Ravi's discomfort with his own sexuality and need to assert an image of himself as very not gay? Is he acting out homophobia he learned at home or from the culture around him, or is he trying to deny his own homosexual urges? Sometimes young Asian guys are a bit more effeminate and Ravi hardly looks very macho, was Ravi teased about being gay himself at some point? What about Wei denying any responsibility instead of feeling ashamed of her involvement and feeling remorse that her actions/inactions caused harm to another (she gave Ravi the tools, she's far from "not involved")? How does Wei's own homophobia play into it? Would she also have gone along with another woman having her privacy violated in this way? If her actions aren't descriptive of who she is in this case, who was she trying to be when she went along with Ravi? Does she even have any autonomy or make choices for herself in her life?

Tyler Clementi seemed quite clear on who he was - he wasn't having identity issues and was seemly openly gay. He'd clearly dealt with homophobic assholes before - his roommate was shitty but he realized he might get someone who was openly hostile instead of passive aggressive like Ravi...the thing is that open hostility is actually often easier to deal with than someone who is pretending not to be a total asshole - such as Ravi who clearly put on a front of being an okay guy but then did something sneaky and nasty...Ravi, like all people who resort to passive aggression, clearly promotes a false image of himself as a "good guy", probably both to others and to himself. Passive aggression is often a means for people to hide from themselves (as well as others) the unpleasant aspects of who they are. How much did Ravi resent Tyler being different and not hiding it? What kind of pressure to conform did Ravi and Wei get from their parents?

And how can it not be bullying when it's one guy encouraging a gang of people to make fun of someone because they're different? If they were filming it because they thought it was hot and promoting it to everyone as desirable, it would be invasion of privacy but not bullying. Bully's always resort to "haha, it was just a joke, what's your problem that you can't take a joke?" when they're caught bullying by someone with more power than them (bully's are cowards, it's a defining characteristic of being a bully really, whether the bullying is passive aggressive or overt).

While I think there's complexity to be explored around this issue and the media is again promoting a pre-constructed narrative, in this instance I think Alone is doing exactly the same thing in his reaction and presentation of his own pre-constructed narrative about the media's pre-constructed narrative. Ah, irony, it bites everyone on the ass eventually. Alone, you can do better - but, hey, can't we all a lot of the time.

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This isn't an exercise in a... (Below threshold)

October 3, 2010 10:21 AM | Posted by Shannon: | Reply

This isn't an exercise in armchair psychology people. He was bothered by it. You can't read emotion into web postings and it's easy to dissect words but he didn't first reach out to Facebook friends or take to Twitter. He went to a gay men's forum to look for advice and solace from people that had walked a mile in his shoes.

It is really quite possible that we only know him as the "Gay Kid that commit suicide" but his family wasn't aware of his sexual orientation and only found out upon his death. He may not have known the extent to the video's distribution and we don't either.

I don't claim to be an expert like others on here but my father killed himself and unfortunately, it isn't cut and dry and nice and neat and tidy. It's sloppy and makes no sense.

Regardless, I don't think there's a sinister plot by the media. A gay kid was harassed. A gay kid commit suicide because of it. The end. Ipso facto, he killed himself because of someone else's torment.

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een - All kinds of things c... (Below threshold)

October 3, 2010 10:31 AM | Posted, in reply to een's comment, by Anonymous: | Reply

een - All kinds of things could have happened - the university may have downplayed what happened to him in some way so that he realized he wasn't going to get institutional support, for instance. If he thought asking for another roommate would mean he'd probably end up with someone more homophobic, clearly Ravi's passive aggressive homophobia was milder than the campus norm (at least on the surface) and what is tolerated as normal by the university powers that be. He could well have endured a day of people staring and whispering, or worse, and realized that the world is much more homophobic than he'd previously thought. This could be pretty overwhelming at that age. Our society does present itself as much less homophobic than it really is.

And so does the media. How many out gay newscasters are there? About as many as there are out pro-football players. The question becomes, what purpose does this narrative serve for the media? Much like the false controversy the media whipped up about sexism in the locker room to ensure everyone believes football is super hetero, perhaps this is really more about the media's needs than anyone else's? How much is this about the media trying to promote themselves as not being homophobic? And how much of this is because it's about social media and the evils of social media (twitter, fb)?

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Some quite interesting cove... (Below threshold)

October 3, 2010 10:44 AM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

Some quite interesting coverage of the story that is not simplistic or purely reactionary...

http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2010-10-01/will-dharun-ravi-and-molly-wei-be-charged-with-hate-crime/

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An interesting dynamic that... (Below threshold)

October 3, 2010 11:11 AM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

An interesting dynamic that's emerging - that really does point to bullying - is that Ravi was actually surrounded by and engaging in making fun of gays in general with high school friends who were also at the university.

"While Ravi and Wei purged their Twitter feeds, their friends did not. Ravi’s friend from high school and fellow Rutgers student Nikhil Mashettiwar tweeted to his friend on Sept. 20, “we should get our roommates together.” The day after Clementi apparently killed himself, Mashettiwar tweeted, “Gay kid in class: i hate when i like have to repeat myself.” Mashettiwar did not respond to requests for comment about his tweets and deleted his Twitter feed within an hour of being contacted."

The deleting of the Twitter feeds shows that these young adults clearly knew what they were doing was not okay.

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I don't buy into this diary... (Below threshold)

October 3, 2010 12:26 PM | Posted, in reply to Anonymous's comment, by David: | Reply

I don't buy into this diary's morphing meme that media coverage has been nothing but reactionary or simplistic ... nevertheless, thanks for the link. I'd imagine as time goes on there will be even more information unearthed and your citation is a good example.

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That's ridiculous. It is ob... (Below threshold)

October 3, 2010 10:14 PM | Posted, in reply to R. Kevin Hill's comment, by Anonymous: | Reply

That's ridiculous. It is obvious the douchebag was filiming Clementi's sexual behavior specifically because he found it humorous/offensive. The guy who filmed him was a heterosexual male. If we are assuming he is genuinely heterosexual, that means the only reason to film gay sex and broadcast it over the internet is to embarrass and shame the homosexual people involved.

Why else would a heterosexual male film homosexual male sex... and then make a spectacle about it, telling all his friends what he was doing? The answer is humor, humor by embarrassing the gay man for having homosexual sex.

If he were closeted and enjoying watching gay sex, he would never have the nerve to tell others he was doing it. The intent is clear: haha you dirty fag having dirty gay sex I will embarrass you in front of all our friends now, LOL.

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I came to the same conclusi... (Below threshold)

October 3, 2010 10:56 PM | Posted by My Posting Career: | Reply

I came to the same conclusions, independently, as The Last Psychiatrist (someone forwarded me this link).

Another notable aspect of this case is how, when you point out ANY of the information that tends to move this away from "gay bullying CASE CLOSED" territory, homosexual advocates react with rage. You can see the rage in these comments.

TLP, you are stealing from these people their legitimate, righteous grievances agains the world! And they are very angry with you about it!

We care less about reality than about *our* reality. That's what this incident shows. It really doesn't say a whole lot about bullying (or pranking) of homosexuals.

I'd like to know more about Clementi's mental health history before throwing anyone in jail. And frankly I'm not convinced that homosexuality isn't directly related to mental instability of the kind Clementi evidences.

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First of all, let me offer ... (Below threshold)

October 3, 2010 11:43 PM | Posted, in reply to My Posting Career's comment, by David: | Reply

First of all, let me offer my congratulations that you "came to the same conclusions, independently, as The Last Psychiatrist ...." Your family must be very proud of you.

Second, thank you for highlighting our "legitimate, righteous grievances agains (sic) the world!" And a special thanks for including the emphatic exclamation point to really drive this point home. I often times wonder who will speak for all of us and you certainly have answered that question.

Third, kudos for frankly not being convinced that homosexuality, in fact, "isn't directly related to the mental instability of the kind Clementi evidences," eg: jumping off the George Washington bridge. City engineers may want to use this information to plan accordingly.

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David, do you realize how p... (Below threshold)

October 4, 2010 1:28 AM | Posted, in reply to David's comment, by Anonymous: | Reply

David, do you realize how pathetically feeble your retort is?

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My Posting Career - just be... (Below threshold)

October 4, 2010 8:55 AM | Posted, in reply to My Posting Career's comment, by Anonymous: | Reply

My Posting Career - just because you agree with TLP, doesn't mean you are both automatically right and that your perspective isn't being informed by personal bias, personal ignorance or simple lack of understanding. Sounds a lot more like you're working from a point of confirmation bias than critical thinking actually.

The media - particularly in the US where critical thinking is devalued and discouraged - prefer simplistic stories because it's a way to avoid real issues while giving the impression of addressing issues. The accuracy of the simplified stories is always questionable, particularly when they're sensationalized.

There's also the matter of what people consider bullying and how they define it. People who use bullying tactics to get their way, won't consider it bullying most of the time when they do it so won't recognize it as bullying when others do it. Bullying is less about physical violence and much more about social humiliation - it's the social humiliation that's at the heart of bullying. It's not only meant to designate the bullied as an outcast, it's also a warning to others not to cross the bully because they'll suffer the same social humiliation. Clearly some people here don't even understand what bullying is (perhaps because they indulge in it as a strategy to try to gain personal power themselves).

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There may or may not be a l... (Below threshold)

October 4, 2010 2:34 PM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

There may or may not be a lot more to this guy's story, and there are undoubtedly a variety of other factors that resulted in his suicide. However, that this particular case may not be a perfect example of how pernicious homophobia can be and the damage it can do, the fact remains that gay kids have a much higher rate of suicide than straight kids, and it is NOT because they are mentally any different than everybody else.

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Sorry, didn't mean to be an... (Below threshold)

October 4, 2010 2:36 PM | Posted by David M. Allen M.D.: | Reply

Sorry, didn't mean to be anonymous

There may or may not be a lot more to this guy's story, and there are undoubtedly a variety of other factors that resulted in his suicide. However, that this particular case may not be a perfect example of how pernicious homophobia can be and the damage it can do, the fact remains that gay kids have a much higher rate of suicide than straight kids, and it is NOT because they are mentally any different than everybody else.

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lol "Sounds a lot more like... (Below threshold)

October 5, 2010 10:13 PM | Posted, in reply to Anonymous's comment, by Anonymous: | Reply

lol "Sounds a lot more like you're working from a point of confirmation bias than critical thinking actually" is the new "check your privilege".

IF YOU DISAGREE WITH ME IT MUST BE BECAUSE OF YOUR INNATE BIASES!

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No, not "innate biases" jus... (Below threshold)

October 6, 2010 10:01 AM | Posted, in reply to Anonymous's comment, by Anonymous: | Reply

No, not "innate biases" just a confirmation bias. Defensive much? Though it is funny that you'd accusing anyone who says you "may have a confirmation bias" by accusing them of having a confirmation bias - from the lack of self awareness exhibited in your other post, I'll assume the irony is unintentional on your part.

Perhaps you mistake your biases and opinions for who you actually are and see your beliefs about certain things as "innate". Interesting that you automatically believe that someone saying "you may have a confirmation bias" means that anyone who notices a confirmation bias must have one of their own. (And, being human, I do have confirmation biases that I have to be aware of and check and don't assume to be free of...it's the people who refuse to even consider that they may have a confirmation bias that generally do have one. What makes it appear that you have a confirmation bias is that you just essentially said, "I think Alone's right because I think the same thing as Alone" or more accurately "I think I'm right because Alone and I believe the same thing".

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Uh, so how do we know this ... (Below threshold)

October 10, 2010 2:00 AM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

Uh, so how do we know this is really a suicide?

Maybe his roommate murdered him and then typed the Facebook post to cover it up?

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the fact remains that ga... (Below threshold)

October 19, 2010 8:53 PM | Posted, in reply to David M. Allen M.D.'s comment, by Samson: | Reply

the fact remains that gay kids have a much higher rate of suicide than straight kids, and it is NOT because they are mentally any different than everybody else.

They ARE "mentally different" than other kids: they are homosexual. The hypothesis that homosexuality might be linked with other mental disorders is one that should at least be entertained by a neutral investigator.

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Even though I do not think ... (Below threshold)

October 20, 2010 2:18 AM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

Even though I do not think homosexuality is substantially linked to mental health disorders (other than perhaps the fact that being homosexual may cause neurosis and poor adjustment as a result of being homosexual in our culture)... I do think it should be investigated if only to rule out an association between brain defect and homosexual orientation.

Speaking personally, I am very fascinated in atypical sexual behavior, and I think it would be wonderful if it could one day be known what causes homosexuality. It's knowledge, it's interesting. I also think it wouldn't be a bad thing to prevent it in utero since being homosexual (or having gender identity disorder, or being intersex) is a difficult life when compared to having a typical/biologically productive sexual orientation and identity.

It's a shame political agenda and social engineering makes it impossible to study the biological origins of homosexuality. We must default to the idea that "we are all shades of a gender / sexuality rainbow" and "all orientations are equally good/useful". IT is patently obvious that homosexuality is not "equal" to heterosexuality in the sense that homosexuality is a birth defect and heterosexuality is normal development. Homosexual orientation is biologically unproductive. The drive to sexual reproduction is as fundamental as hunger or thirst. Therefore, it is a birth defect along the lines of say a cleft lip... it's not morally bad, it's just a slight minor birth defect. The brain has been feminized (or masculinized) so that the organism expresses sexual behavior more like the opposite sex. Scientists do this routinely with animals - alter a few hormones prenatally, suddenly male rams want to get it on with male rams and ignore females.

Nothing more, nothing less, god and the devil and spirits need not apply. Just a brain that didn't develop correctly, sorta like mental retardation or schizophrenia - an organic, biological brain abnormality.

We should of course accept embrace and support homosexuals, give them all the same rights we give heterosexuals... but we also should study what causes it and work to prevent it in future generations.

It's a shame we default between "it's morally bad and should be punished/suppressed by force" or alternatively "it's just as good as heterosexuality and no attempt should be made to prevent it by resolving the defects involved, if possible".

Somewhere between these two emotional extremes is the truth. HOmosexuality is morally neutral, homosexuals should not be stimatized, but we should also utilize science to prevent birth defects as much as possible.

FOr example, if we know condition A makes the development of mental retardation more likely, only a fool would argue that we should not take the appropriate prevention to reduce rates of mental retardation. Being mentally retarded is a difficult life - you can't be a lawyer or a doctor, you have to limit yourself, you will be socially unsuccessful, you can't achieve as much as people who are not mentally retarded, etc. It's not your fault, and the mentally retarded are not bad peoploe, but they have a brain problem and their life is difficult because of it. If we could reduce mental retardation by altering conditions which cause this abnormal development prenatally, that would be good for future generations.

Similarly with homosexuality, if we know (for example) some conditions make homosexual orientation more likely, it would be beneficial for people to know what those conditions were so it could be prevented. Homosexuality is also a difficult life - one feels no sexual attraction to the opposite sex, meaning one can never have children with their beloved partner. Any children they do have must be by unrelated strangers or somewhat related family members of their partner. One can never have "natural" sex and enjoy it the way a heterosexual can. One has difficulty if not total inability to conform to normal gender roles and relate to others properly, since gender identity is often affected as well. Homosexual men are often feminine in multiple ways and lesbian women are often masculine in multiple ways, making social assimilation problematic. If the gender identity is profoundly disturbed one may become a transsexual and the drawbacks/difficulties involved in that life are even more obvious. I don't even think it needs to be stated the problem of hating your body, getting surgery and taking hormones just to feel okay with yourself.

There really aren't any benefits to being homosexual and multiple drawbacks... sorta like a cleft lip. "Hard to talk, hard to eat some things, makes me stand out and look weird" etc.

No one would argue that we shouldn't prevent cleft lip, most every reasonable person agrees it would be good to prevent such deformities by avoiding the causative conditions ... if possible.

Why do we have to all pretend like homosexuality is normal and natural and shouldn't be prevented? Why can't we take a reasoned acceptance of homosexuality and homosexuals, while maintaining a reasoned focus on preventing it and resolving it? Why do we have to choose between two ridiculous irrational extremes?

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"Why do we have to all pret... (Below threshold)

October 20, 2010 9:41 AM | Posted by AnAnon: | Reply

"Why do we have to all pretend like homosexuality is normal and natural and shouldn't be prevented?"

Because it is natural and people who understand science and biology aren't pretending - maybe you're pretending not to be a homophobe?

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One can never have "natu... (Below threshold)

October 20, 2010 11:11 AM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

One can never have "natural" sex and enjoy it the way a heterosexual can. One has difficulty if not total inability to conform to normal gender roles and relate to others properly, since gender identity is often affected as well. Homosexual men are often feminine in multiple ways and lesbian women are often masculine in multiple ways, making social assimilation problematic.

This was where I stopped reading because I was finally too goddamn angry.

I'd tell you what's wrong with everything you said, but I'm not going to change your opinion since it's clear you have already thought very long and hard about how to justify your homophobia, so I'll just start by asking if you also think heterosexual couples who don't want children should have had their 'defect' prevented in utero, and hope you start realising how stupid a person you are.

P.S. Homosexuality is natural, as is gay sex. Please look up these things.

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No, it's not normal and onl... (Below threshold)

October 20, 2010 11:11 AM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

No, it's not normal and only homosexuals pretending that they understand science and biology try to make everyone believe that it's normal.
You can call me a homophobe, but I just want to keep away from those who do not want to become a part of society but rather fight with society demanding it to change and accept them. Fight your battles away from me, please.

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you are a very childish per... (Below threshold)

October 20, 2010 11:20 AM | Posted, in reply to AnAnon's comment, by Steve: | Reply

you are a very childish person

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I think you may have misund... (Below threshold)

October 20, 2010 11:21 AM | Posted, in reply to Anonymous's comment, by R. Kevin Hill: | Reply

I think you may have misunderstood my suggestion; it may be false, but it is not ridiculous. If the roommate was angry about having to give up the shared room repeated so his roommate could have sex (something I recall in college was a source of lots of friction between straight roommates) then he might've been motivated by a desire to embarrass him. Last I checked, most people find having their sexual activity unexpectedly broadcasted embarrassing. So no, you do not have enough facts to know if this particular act was motivated by homophobia, unless of course you consider the fact that a black man robs a white man proof that the black man is a racist. Do you?

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Yes, homosexuality is natur... (Below threshold)

October 21, 2010 12:30 AM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply

Yes, homosexuality is natural in the sense that it occurs in nature.

However, this is usually only true when animals are actually heterosexual (that is, they prefer reproductive sex) but will often engage in homosexual behavior for other reasons (lack of access to the opposite sex, or stress relief/social connections whatever). It can be said many animals are "bisexual" so to speak ;). There are some instances of homosexuality, exclusive homosexuality among animals but that is very rare.

Also, regarding the definition of "natural", I apologize for using this word incorrectly. Natural means occurring in nature, whereas I was trying to describe a condition where something occurs in nature and is biologically adaptive/productive. Many things are natural which are not biologically productive. Cats with stillborn litters are entirely natural; runts are natural. Animals born without legs are natural. All of this occurs in nature and is natural, however no one would argue these things are biologically adaptive, beneficial, and equally valid when compared to normal development.

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anon 11:11 - you are not be... (Below threshold)

October 21, 2010 12:40 AM | Posted, in reply to Anonymous's comment, by Anonymous: | Reply

anon 11:11 - you are not being rational.

There is quite a difference between a heterosexual person making a choice not to reproduce, and a homosexual person who is basically infertile in the sense that they can never have children with their preferred life partner. They can have children,b ut they can never have natural children with a spouse, which is quite a tremendous limitation to have on yourself. Imagine what it must be like to know that your children will not be biologically your husband/wife's child as well?

Regarding heterosexual people who are infertile because of biological defect, then yes, that should be prevented or cured if it can be. Infertility treatment is expensive and often dangerous, resulting in multiples (dangerous to baby and mother) or other biological health problems (e.g. ovarian hyperstimulation for exmaple).


It's about limitations, and homosexuality limits a person. Sorry if this harsh reality ruins your PC world view. There are worse things than being homosexual, but certainly it is better to be heterosexual if one could choose.

Regarding whether or not homosexuality is "natural" I already addressed this above.

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The responses to my ... (Below threshold)

October 21, 2010 12:41 AM | Posted by Anonymous: | Reply


The responses to my post clearly demonstrating these emotional polar extremes... group 1 which says "homosexuality is a perfectly valid form of variation entirely equal to heterosexulaity and if you disagree you are a homophobe!!111"... then you have group 2 which says "homosexuals are abnormal and do not assimilate and we should prevent homosexuals from joining society and being accepted". Both are extreme emotional positions.

I am the only one who sees this for what it is - homosexuality is a biologically valid phenomenon, but it is also a form of birth defect/abnormal neurological development. It is not morally bad and homosexuals should be treated as equal people and given all rights enjoyed by homosexuals, but science and medicine should also try to understand homosexuality and prevent it, due to the limiting nature of this condition (as described above, one cannot achieve as much and enjoy the same options as people with normal neurological development). It's certainly worse to be mentally handicapped, schizophrenic, or autistic... but homosexuality is still limiting and if it is possible to prevent it, I see no benefit to allowing it to develop.

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<a href="http://www.coachus... (Below threshold)

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great post keep it like thi... (Below threshold)

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This is a tragedy and since... (Below threshold)

January 13, 2012 9:12 PM | Posted by David: | Reply

This is a tragedy and since so much of the author's comments are speculation built upon slight evidence this may be, in fact may also morally be, an instance when the saying at the top of his blog should have been heeded.
Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, daruber muss man schweigen

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