Oct 22 2010

Jackson-corey-facebook Yesterday over lunch and dinner in The Glass House Tavern, I watched from my window perch to see how many people in the streets were wearing purple to express outrage at the epidemic of suicides by young people who are members or perceived to be LGBT citizens. Facebook was purple. The people in the streets surprisingly took up the message in large numbers. Many shows on television yesterday were purple. As a statement, the day was a huge success.

Unfortunately, the day was capped with the announcement of yet one more of our young killing himself. Corey Jackson, (just 19) of Oakland College in Michigan went into the woods and hung himself from a tree. He was not bullied however the young gay Oakland College student could not muster up the will to live in such a hostile world. Every day he had to hear the hate coming from candidates about being gay, our allies compromising our freedom and in the process separating us from the rest of society and of vicious hate crimes that left LGBT citizens bloodied or dead.

There isn't one of us who hasn't experienced his depression and there isn't one of us who doesn't wish that we could have somehow reached him. Slogans, special days, videos and other efforts certainly have saved lives but in the end more is needed. The end of oppression of LGBT people is what is needed. The end of our allies going to courts to slow down our freedom is what is needed. The end to hateful rhetoric that leads to endless violence against LGBT people is what is needed.

Every time a person uses angry language, allows students to chant 'faggot', ducks on the LGBT fight for civil rights or asks us to be patient, they increase the odds of another young person committing suicide. Maggie Gallagher of NOM can wash her hands at the sink all she wants but the blood of these young people have permanently stained them. There is no cleansing agent around that get those hands clean.

Our 'friends' who consul patience, chose process over freedom and empower our enemies by their inaction or silence need to understand the ramifications of their actions.

We can only honor Corey Jackson by fighting for full equality, freedom and justice. Anything less means he will have died in vain. The least we can do is honor him with this tribute and be uncompromising in our fight for freedom and full equality.