Students at Midd-West High School cried out against bullying Friday as they mourned the loss of a classmate who in the early morning hours walked about 13 miles from his home to Routes 11-15, where he ran in front of a southbound tractor-trailer after leaving a suicide note at his home.
Freshman Brandon Bitner, 14, of Mount Pleasant Mills, ran in front of the truck at 3 a.m. near Liverpool, according to state police at Newport.....
There seems to be little doubt in the students’ minds why Bitner did what he did.
“It was because of bullying,” friend Takara Jo Folk wrote in a letter to The Daily Item.
“It was not about race, or gender, but they bullied him for his sexual preferences and the way he dressed. Which,” she said, “they wrongly accused him of.”
Bullying a gay kid for being gay attacks their very being. And the Conservative groups that protest anti-bullying legislation want the ability to continue to attack. Gabriel Arana writes at The American Prospect ,
One Minnesota city changed its policy to require that teachers be "neutral" when it comes to discussing sexual orientation (so a teacher can tell kids not to call the gay kid "gay," but she can't tell the class that there's nothing wrong with being gay).He also distinguishes "bullying" from "harassment". He follows up on Americablog,
Conservative Christians like to pretend that there's a big difference between picking on a gay kid -- i.e., "bullying" -- and disapproving of homosexuality, but in reality one stems from the other. In practice, it's tough to indoctrinate someone into thinking being gay is wrong, immoral, disgusting, and then ask him or her to treat a gay person with respect; it's a natural human instinct to recoil from things that you perceive to be bad or harmful, and no matter how many times you pledge to "love the sinner but not the sin," when it comes down to it, even adults can't carry that out, much less children.Meanwhile another child is dead.