What usually goes through the mind of a 9-year-old? Their favorite cartoon or video game? When their homework assignment is due?
Those are probably some things that the typical 9-year-olds would be thinking about. However, death or dying from suicide should never be one of the things a child should ever have to think about. Unfortunately, we lost the life of 9-year-old, Jamel Myles, last week from death by suicide after being told to kill himself by his classmates four days after he started 4th grade.
Jamel was found in his home dead by his mother last Thursday. This story made it on twitter headlines on Tuesday and started a conversation surrounding LGBTQ youth, bullying, suicide, and sympathies for the family.
I can't say much about #JamelMyles because it makes me literally sick. As much as we want to make this about "bad" kids bullying him to death, it's about a society that others and harms LGBTQ people. Children are constantly learning from the world around them, mainly from adults.
— Dana (@DanaVivianWhite) August 28, 2018
1989. 4th grade. 9 yrs old. First time a fellow male classmate shamed me by saying “stop being so gay.” I didn’t know who I was then. Jamel did. He was gay. And he was proud, until he wasn’t. My heart aches. #JamelMyles https://t.co/Lp1i8n5KJb
— Steven Canals (@StevenCanals) August 28, 2018
Same folks talking bout kids can’t possibly know that they’re queer are asking their 6,7,8,9 year old nephews how many girlfriends they have or who they like in school. Please.
— Reagan Gomez (@ReaganGomez) August 28, 2018
So who’s the blame for the death of Jamel Myles? The kids who bullied him or the heteronormative rules set up in society. I lean more on the latter because children often get their behavior from adults.
In an academic journal a study conducted by the 2015 National Youth Risk Behavior Survey, the results found that 40% of adolescent youth who identify as gay, lesbian, or questioning contemplated suicide. Unfortunately, transgender identifying teens weren’t included in this survey but the numbers would be even higher than the ones that were reported originally.
Below are excerpts from an article on the ACLU website in regards to Harassment of LGBTQ Youth.
” A study of Massachusetts high school students published in the journal Pediatrics reports that nearly one-third of gay teens had been threatened in the past month with a weapon at school, compared to 7% of heterosexual students surveyed.”
“The Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) conducted a survey of 496 lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) students from 32 states. This survey found that over 90% of LGBT youth reported that they sometimes or frequently heard homophobic comments in their schools.”
Entire studies are done to show how LGBTQ youth are affected by bullying and harassment yet people on social media including parents are still feeding into homophobia which their own kids learn from them.
ALRIGHT WRAP IT UP EVERYONE DOJACAT HYPE OVER pic.twitter.com/OHHb4HU5o8
— zacharie @ p5 (@divisionallstar) August 29, 2018
Today, news spread of a 9 year-old gay boy who was bullied to the point of suicide. In response, heterosexuals lamented that homosexuality is forced onto children who are too young to know their orientation.
— Yvangelista (@AdamantxYves) August 28, 2018
Gurl I….Get your problematic faves and their associates with this trash rhetoric off of social media.
I always hated seeing those what would do if your son/daughter were queer tweets because the people only use them as a way to bash the queer community with a hypothetical. Just admit that you’re homophobic or transphobic so we can drag you properly and move on.
Those who identify with the LGBTQ community have to go through two forms of adolescence one where they walk in the world as “heterosexual” and the one where we have to hide our true identities because society says we’re not morally right. Most times we suffer in silence in order to not be singled out by our peers or family members.
Jamel Myles was confident enough to tell his mom and sister about how he identified; however, the harassment pushed him over the edge and another queer youth was lost too soon from suicide and bullying.
Conversations are still being had over the ways we can improve society so more children and adolescents would feel safe and comfortable in their identity both in the world and in their families. Overall we have a long way to go.
‘Ru Paul’s Drag Race’ Star Chi Chi DeVayne Passes Away at 34-Years-Old
Zavion Davenport, better known as RuPaul’s Drag Race’s Chi Chi DeVayne has died at the young age of 34, fellow alum Trinity K. Bonet confirmed on Instagram today.
The Drag Race contestant had been diagnosed with scleroderma, also called crest syndrome, back in 2018.
Fans and other contestants of the show had been sharing the DeVayne’s payment information to assist with the overwhelming cost of hospital bills. Shea Coulee and Priyanka had been especially involved in raising funds for their fellow alum.
‘Real Housewives of Potomac’ star Candiace Dillard Makes Fatphobic Comment Towards Blogger and Suggest That He “Drop Dead”
*deep negro spiritual sigh* There are very few things that truly anger me. Somehow, Candiace, a woman whose mouth seems to get her beat up often, has found one of those few buttons with her latest statement.
So, here I am, minding my fat ass business when I see this:
Rumor has it that she was talking about Kyle from The Black Socialites. It really doesn’t matter who she was talking about, but I guess we’ll never know because she didn’t have the courage to say a name. She did have the courage, however, to talk about her involvement with “plots” against other cast members. She was able to talk for two hours, under the glow of her pale husband’s flickering TV screen, about absolutely nothing of substance.
There are uprisings happening, a pandemic happening, but she’s worried about “plotting” in the DMV. We just passed the 6th anniversary of Michael Brown’s death. That’s in her backyard. That’s a pain that she should be deconstructing. Instead she chooses to attack a fat Black man who is working hard to bring her show press.
I’ll end with the victim’s words, and we can all go back to not knowing Candiace exists:
Trump Administration Cuts Protections for Transgender Americans
On Friday, the Trump administration announced it would be rolling back an Obama-era rule protecting transgender Americans from discrimination in health care.
Under the Obama administration, Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act expanded the definition of sex discrimination to include discrimination based on one’s gender identity. Under a revised version of the rule, the Department of Health and Human Services will enforce Section 1557 “by returning to the government’s interpretation of sex discrimination according to the plain meaning of the word ‘sex’ as male or female and as determined by biology” beginning in mid-August. In other words, doctors and insurance companies receiving funding from the Fed can legally refuse any patient needing transition-related medical care.
Of course, as quickly as the rule was finalized, many LGBTQ+ organizations including the ACLU,announced intentions to sue the Trump administration over this new language. “The Trump admin has issued a rule that will embolden health care discrimination against transgender people.. All while a global pandemic is occurring.” said the ACLU in a tweet.
Forget a global pandemic, ACLU. Friday’s announcement came on the fourth anniversary of the Pulse nightclub tragedy, a mass shooting at a popular Florida gay nightclub that left 49 people and the shooter dead.
President Trump has made it clear how he feels about the nearly 1.4 million transgender people in this country, his fellow Americans – he doesn’t feel anything.