LBGT Students Are Not Safe at School
My name is Charles Johnson and I’m from New Orleans, Louisiana. And I was a freshman in senior high school and I was happy, because I used to be lucky enough to be seated with a couple of top classmen young ladies. And there were three of us there – me, a friend of mine named Olivia and a friend of mine called Molly.
And a pal of theirs transferred by us and his name was James. And James was the out gay man from our high school. James was very flamboyant to put it mildly. James was the kind of guy to wear Daisy Dukes to college and ultra limited shirts. He’s one particular guy we used to state, “He’s in the crystal wardrobe.” You didn’t have to ask – you could just see right in. And that was James.
And James had come across to speak to Olivia and Molly and then still left. So that as he remaining, I came up, or I might have already been there. But I said, “Oh my god! He’s just so disgusting!” And my pal Olivia viewed me and she said, “What do you say?” And I said, “He’s so disgusting. The way he acts. Just how he just prances. It’s just uncalled for.” And she viewed me and she said, “Wow, Charles. I thought you were better than that.”
And to have a person who I respected and who I’d only known for a brief time period but had turn into a good friend of mine too – the look of hurt and disappointment in her face – really showed me that this informal homophobia which i have been cultivating, it’s not cool, it doesn’t need to be done, and also you don’t need to have friends or to maintain friends. And that’s really powerful. And you notice that, having gone through that, it makes you realize that quite often the people who are the most virulently homophobic will be the ones that want to hide something about themselves.
Even though I used to be a freshman in high school, I knew I was gay at that time. I’d known for quite a little of time which i was homosexual. It was all part of a – I don’t know, I assume I knew earlier on once i is at middle school and kind of starting to figure out what would be my story – that it was always much simpler to make fun of gay kids and homosexual adults. It could always get a good laugh And I assume subconsciously that people wouldn’t think that maybe I used to be one particular people, too.
Later on, when i reflected on what Olivia thought to me, I figured out which i don’t should do that. I promised myself from that point on that I wouldn’t make fun of anybody for being gay as a way of trying to hide who I am and aiming to cover who I really is.
If you’re dealing with those feelings, you just have to accept them and deal with them. And making other folks unpleasant because you feel that you may become more unpleasant if people understood is actually cowardly. You end up growing hurt in ways that individuals don’t deserve which you have no right to impose. I would hope that individuals would use me as a cautionary tale because I believe eventually that no matter who you are, you’ll get it. And you’ll be ashamed. So the previous you can kind of change that, the better.
Which isn’t simply for homosexual people or for trans people or whomever. It’s simply a positive thing for all of us to do as humans.
Gay Bullying Statistics:
According to recent gay bullying statistics, gay and lesbian teens are two to three times as more likely to commit teen suicide than other youths. About 30 percent of all completed suicides have been related to sexual identity crisis. Students who also fall into the gay, bisexual, lesbian or transgendered identity groups report being five times as more likely to miss school because they feel unsafe after being bullied due to their sexual orientation. About 28 percent out of those groups feel forced to drop out of school altogether. Although more and more schools are working to crack down on problems with bullying, teens are still continuing to bully each other due to sexual orientation and other factors.
In a 2005 survey about gay bullying statistics, teens reported that the number two reason they are bullied is because of their actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender expression. The number one reason reported was because of appearance. Teens are at a pivotal point in their young adult lives when they are trying to find out who they are and who they are about to become as adults. This is why being teased, bullied and harassed is something that could negatively affect a person’s self-esteem and view of themselves for the rest of their life.
In fact, about 9 out of 10 LGBT teens have reported being bullied at school within the past year because of their sexual orientation, according to the most recent gay bullying statistics. Out of those numbers, almost half have reported being physically harassed followed by another quarter who reported actually being physically assaulted. Unfortunately most teens who experience bullying of any kind are reluctant to share their experience or report the incident to a teacher or trusted adult. Even more unfortunate are the gay statistics that report a lack of response among those teachers and school administration. According to a recent statistic, out of the students that did report a harassment or bullying situation because of their sexuality, about one third of the school staff didn’t do anything to resolve the issue.
Types of Bullying and Bully Prevention:
There are several ways that bullying can take place including verbal, physical, cyberbullying and indirect bullying. Physically being bullied usually entails some sort of physical assault or attack, or can also include having one’s personal property destroyed or stolen. Verbal bullying arises from name calling that may be done because of a person’s gender, sexual orientation, minority status, race, religious, etc. Indirect bullying is one of the most common types of bullying is the type of bullying that many people may do without even realizing it. Indirect bullying includes spreading stories and rumors about a person behind his or her back as well as exclusion from social groups. Cyber bullying can also fall into the category of indirect bullying, but includes bullying that is done over any type of electronic medium like text messaging, email, pictures sent via text or email, websites, blogs, message boards, chat-rooms and instant messaging.
When it comes to bully prevention, it is important to remember that these gay bullying statistics will never go down if action isn’t taken. This is why it is important for teens to report incidents they are victims of, or even if they witness a bullying event take place. Even if it seems that the adults will be unresponsive to take action, there are always other members of the school board or administration that can be addressed. It is important not to give up or the bullying cycle will continue.
LBGT Students are disproportionately harassed, and few teachers are trained to help. Society has changed in many positive ways, and we assumed schools would follow suit. Catch the latest in LGBTQ news by subscribing to the Queer Life newsletter.