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7 years ago

Tell Congress: Stop Cyber Bullying by Creating Federal Laws

Rutgers freshman, Tyler Clementi, committed suicide on September 22 by jumping off the George Washington Bridge. His roommate secretly videotaped him engaging in sexual acts with another man. His roommate, Dharun Ravi, and his friend Molly Wei, then broadcast the videos via the internet. Tyler was so distraught that he took his own life. This is absolutely horrific on so many levels. It is unclear if Tyler was out with his sexual orientation. If he was not and his roommate outed him, this is cruel and inhumane. What makes it even more horrific is invasion of privacy and broadcast of his intimate moments for his roommate and his friends to watch. This is a hate crime and it's cyber bullying. We need to fight for stricter laws against cyber bullying. Sign the petition and tell your leaders to act now!

This post was modified from its original form on 30 Sep, 16:14
7 years ago

Dear Echo,

Communities are reeling from recent suicides.

Students are being pushed to the edge. The bullying must STOP.

This is an epidemic.

Last week, Rutgers University freshman Tyler Clementi killed himself by jumping off a bridge after his roommate secretly recorded him with another male student, then broadcast the video online.

I wish I could tell you this was an isolated incident. But Tyler's death as a victim of anti-gay harassment was just one of a number of recent suicides among teenagers who were ruthlessly "bullied to death."

Our schools and our nation cannot sit back and wait for the next tragedy. So today, we're calling on Secretary of Education Arne Duncan to speak out immediately – and to push every school anti-bullying program in the nation to include sexual orientation and gender identity like HRC's Welcoming Schools program. Please stand with us.

Tyler wasn't the only one.

After months of relentless bullying, 13-year-old Seth Walsh hung himself from a tree outside his California home this week. Billy Lucas of Indiana was 15 years old when he hung himself after being called a "fag" over and over again. Asher Brown's classmates teased him without mercy and acted out mock gay sex acts in class, and last Thursday he shot himself in the head. He was only 13.

And a single district in Minnesota has seen seven suicides in the last year by young victims of intolerance. As a virulently anti-LGBT candidate seeks the governor's chair (a man who could decide the fate of anti-bullying measures), it's clear that the very lives of Minnesota's children are at stake.

This isn't a new problem. It's been happening for decades. And too often, administrators fail to act, even after parents complain about the bullying at school.

That's why HRC developed Welcoming Schools, an innovative program that gives elementary school teachers, parents and students across the country the tools to help stop the name-calling, bullying and gender stereotyping that so many students face every day. It helps kids learn respect and tolerance early on, to prevent violence later in middle and high school.

But it's up to those who run our schools – from Secretary Duncan down to every local school board – to act to end the bullying.

7 years ago

The petition is unfortunately now closed, but this second one is still open. Signed, thanks again.  


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