S/he said: Bullying, Facebook and It Gets Better

Compiled by Howard Israel

"There's a connection between Prop. 8, 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' and now this string of teen suicides. It's almost sanctioned to bully gay people and treat them as second class citizens. There are a lot of right-wing conservative people that absolutely sanction this behavior. All you anti-gay public figures, and you know who you are, you have the blood of these dead teens on your hands."

- Kathy Griffin, on CNN's Larry King Live, talking about gay bullying and suicide, http://www.ontopmag.com, Oct. 7.

"Nowadays, the Christian refrain isn't, 'Stop being gay.' Now it is, 'Stop acting gay.' They've given up trying to argue that the homosexual can change his or her sexual orientation: the complete failure of Christian Fix-a-Gay and Homo No' Mo! programs - not to mention a universe of anecdotal and empirical evidence - have left them little choice. So they've changed their approach. Now the argument is: A homosexual struggling against the temptation to act homosexual is no different from anyone else struggling to resist a sinful temptation."

- John Shore, in his column titled " 'Just Resist The Temptation': The Anti-Love Approach To Homosexuality," http://www.huffingtonpost.com, Oct. 2.

"In the videos in Dan Savage's "It Gets Better" Project, the way it gets better for most people in the videos is that they're able to move away from their small towns and choose their own friends. Homophobia doesn't decrease; rather, we find ways to shield ourselves from it. ... The homophobes still exist, they're just far away, doing their own thing, having queer kids and anti-queer kids and indifferent kids and the odd gay-supportive kid, going back to school only to hear 'it gets better,' but first it'll be terrible."

- Alex Blaze, in her column titled "LGBT People Need to Take the Fight Back to School," http://www.huffingtonpost.com, Oct. 8.

"The first thing that went through my mind was, 'Oh, no, not again.' And because there's an epidemic of suicide among LGBT young people, my next reaction is anger. I'm convinced that the root of a lot of this is religion-based discrimination and defamation. Frankly, I think there's a lot of spiritual malpractice going on."

- Rev. Jack McKinney, a Baptist minister and private pastoral counselor in Raleigh, N.C., in an article titled "Gay Harassment and the Struggle for Inclusion," http://www.nytimes.com, Oct. 8.

"We need take responsibility for protecting ourselves from HIV - it is nobody else's job to protect us but us. We need to move from blame and shame to responsibility and accountability. We need to create a culture that embraces all of us regardless of gender or sexual orientation. We need our wives, mothers, sisters, and daughters to know they are beautiful and complete whether they are partnered or not. And we need black men to step up to the plate, be honest about who we are, regardless of sexual orientation, and provide the leadership this issue demands from black men."

- Phill Wilson, chief executive officer of the Black AIDS Institute, in his column titled "When You Know Better, You Do Better," http://www.blackaids.org, Oct. 8.

"Facebook has taken an important first step in making social media a place where anti-gay violence is not allowed. Our community needs to continue to be vigilant and report instances of hateful comments and images across the site to Facebook moderators as well as post messages of support for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth."

- Jarrett Barrios, president of the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, in a joint press release with Facebook titled "GLAAD and Facebook Work Together to Remove Anti-Gay Comments," http://www.glaad.org, Oct. 13.

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