An open letter to Michigan State Senators

by Beth Rakestraw

I truly hope that you didn,'t laugh.
I truly hope that you were NOT among the state senators who voted down an anti-bullying measure Thursday morning and laughed when you did it.
Because if you did, not only are you a poor excuse for a legislator, you are a poor excuse for a human being.
Children and young people are dying in this state because you will not vote for anti-bullying legislation. And some of you have the incredible and unbelievable lack of compassion and caring to laugh when you vote.
You will not vote for anti-bullying legislation that protects the most vulnerable kids in our society, the ones who are perceived to be gay or lesbian – regardless of the truth about who they really are – or the ones who don't conform to your rigid definition of appropriate gender expression.
You will not vote for anti-bullying legislation that protects all of the children and young people who are perceived to be different, for whatever reason.
The blood of children and young people you refuse to protect is upon your heads.
If you are among those who laughed as you cast your vote Thursday morning against legislation that could save or improve the lives of countless children and young people in this state, regardless of why they are being bullied, you do not care for children and young people in the state of Michigan.
You do NOT deserve to hold the office you do, representing ALL citizens in this state, including the members of the LGBT community who pay taxes that support your salary and are among your constituents, whether you like that or not.
And, if you did NOT laugh when you cast your vote, why did you tolerate such uncaring, inhumane and unprofessional behavior from your colleagues? Because if you did not speak up against this uncaring attitude from your colleagues, you are, at best, thoughtless, and at worst, a coward.
So, when the next child or young person in Michigan commits suicide, will you attend the funeral or memorial service? What will you say to the family and friends who grieve the loss of that child or young person?
Especially if you laughed when you voted NO against the legislation that could have saved their lives.

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