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Leelah Alcorn’s Heartbreaking Last Words

Thursday, January 1st, 2015

We have to find better ways to reach kids like this.

Leelah AlcornIf you are reading this, it means that I have committed suicide and obviously failed to delete this post from my queue.

Please don’t be sad, it’s for the better. The life I would’ve lived isn’t worth living in… because tumblr_nh42atfkcv1tddhzxo2_500I’m transgender. I could go into detail explaining why I feel that way, but this note is probably going to be lengthy enough as it is. To put it simply, I feel like a girl trapped in a boy’s body, and I’ve felt that way ever since I was 4. I never knew there was a word for that feeling, nor was it possible for a boy to become a girl, so I never told anyone and I just continued to do traditionally “boyish” things to try to fit in.

When I was 14, I learned what transgender meant and cried of happiness. After 10 years of confusion I finally understood who I was. I immediately told my mom, and she reacted extremely negatively, telling me that it was a phase, that I would never truly be a girl, that God doesn’t make mistakes, that I am wrong. If you are reading this, parents, please don’t tell this to your kids. Even if you are Christian or are against transgender people don’t ever say that to someone, especially your kid. That won’t do anything but make them hate them self. That’s exactly what it did to me.

My mom started taking me to a therapist, but would only take me to christian therapists, (who were all very biased) so I never actually got the therapy I needed to cure me of my depression. I only got more christians telling me that I was selfish and wrong and that I should look to God for help.

When I was 16 I realized that my parents would never come around, and that I would have to wait until I was 18 to start any sort of transitioning treatment, which absolutely broke my heart. The longer you wait, the harder it is to transition. I felt hopeless, that I was just going to look like a man in drag for the rest of my life. On my 16th birthday, when I didn’t receive consent from my parents to start transitioning, I cried myself to sleep.

I formed a sort of a “fuck you” attitude towards my parents and came out as gay at school, thinking that maybe if I eased into coming out as trans it would be less of a shock. Although the reaction from my friends was positive, my parents were pissed. They felt like I was attacking their image, and that I was an embarrassment to them. They wanted me to be their perfect little straight christian boy, and that’s obviously not what I wanted.

So they took me out of public school, took away my laptop and phone, and forbid me of getting on any sort of social media, completely isolating me from my friends. This was probably the part of my life when I was the most depressed, and I’m surprised I didn’t kill myself. I was completely alone for 5 months. No friends, no support, no love. Just my parent’s disappointment and the cruelty of loneliness.

At the end of the school year, my parents finally came around and gave me my phone and let me back on social media. I was excited, I finally had my friends back. They were extremely excited to see me and talk to me, but only at first. Eventually they realized they didn’t actually give a shit about me, and I felt even lonelier than I did before. The only friends I thought I had only liked me because they saw me five times a week.

After a summer of having almost no friends plus the weight of having to think about college, save money for moving out, keep my grades up, go to church each week and feel like shit because everyone there is against everything I live for, I have decided I’ve had enough. I’m never going to transition successfully, even when I move out. I’m never going to be happy with the way I look or sound. I’m never going to have enough friends to satisfy me. I’m never going to have enough love to satisfy me. I’m never going to find a man who loves me. I’m never going to be happy. Either I live the rest of my life as a lonely man who wishes he were a woman or I live my life as a lonelier woman who hates herself. There’s no winning. There’s no way out. I’m sad enough already, I don’t need my life to get any worse. People say “it gets better” but that isn’t true in my case. It gets worse. Each day I get worse.

That’s the gist of it, that’s why I feel like killing myself. Sorry if that’s not a good enough reason for you, it’s good enough for me. As for my will, I want 100% of the things that I legally own to be sold and the money (plus my money in the bank) to be given to trans civil rights movements and support groups, I don’t give a shit which one. The only way I will rest in peace is if one day transgender people aren’t treated the way I was, they’re treated like humans, with valid feelings and human rights. Gender needs to be taught about in schools, the earlier the better. My death needs to mean something. My death needs to be counted in the number of transgender people who commit suicide this year. I want someone to look at that number and say “that’s fucked up” and fix it. Fix society. Please.


(Leelah) Josh Alcorn

75% of Young Catholics in the US Support Marriage Equality

Sunday, October 19th, 2014

titleIn the wake of a conservative Bishop revolt over even saying one nice thing about gays and lesbians, there’s a new poll out.

Pink News reports:

A poll has found that young Catholics in the US overwhelmingly approve of homosexuality and same-sex marriage, despite the Church’s teachings. The Pew Research Centre research, conducted earlier this year, found that 85 percent of Catholics aged 18-29 approve of homosexuality, while 75 percent support equal marriage. A majority of every single age group accepted homosexuality, with the lowest support among over-65s – 57 percent of whom still approve of it.

How long until some of these youth get into Church leadership and start changing minds?

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USA: 70% of Americans Under 30 Support Marriage Equality

Sunday, September 29th, 2013

titleA new Bloomberg poll shows strong support once again for marriage equality from America’s youth.

The Advocate reports:

Bloomberg’s poll, which surveyed 1,000 American voters between September 20 and 23, found that 70% of Americans under 30 support the freedom to marry. That’s consistent with several other recent polls finding overwhelming support among Milennials for same-sex marriage. Overall, 55% of Americans support marriage equality, while 52% of Republicans oppose it.

Fighting marriage equality is increasingly looking like a dead-end for the Republican Party.

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USA: One Third of College Students Still Oppose LGBT Rights

Friday, September 20th, 2013

titleA new study shows a large minority of college students are still opposed to LGBT rights in the US.

Dot429 reports:

Although popular culture may cultivate the perception that all young people everywhere are in support of gay rights, a recent University of Michigan study shows that one-third still do not. While I’d like to focus on the uplifting seventy-five percent that support LGBT civil rights, one-third is still far too large a fraction–especially among our population’s future leaders. The findings of the study, which appear in the current issue of the Journal of Community Practice, came from a sample of 2,568 heterosexual-identified sophomores, juniors, and graduate students. Participants were asked to provide their views on contemporary LGBT civil rights issues including marriage laws and employment protection rights.

The study shows there’s still work to do, even among the younger generations.

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Australia: Prime Minister’s Pro Marriage Equality Stance Boosts Party With Voters

Sunday, July 14th, 2013

titleAlso in Australia, a new poll says that 30% of voters are more likely to support the Labor Party now that Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has come out for marriage equality. Gay Star News reports:

The survey, conducted by Galaxy Research and funded by Australian Marriage Equality, highlighted 30% of voters would be more likely to support the Labor in the federal contest. The interviewees said their support is due to Rudd’s stance on gay marriage. The 19% of the 1000 people interviewed said they would be less likely to vote for Labor. Young people are more likely to vote for Labor. More than 50% said they will support the left-wing party.

Once again, it’s the youth who are moving the world solidly toward marriage equality. But I wonder how youth turn-out is in Australian elections?

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Australia.

USA, Arkansas: Top Official Backs Marriage Equality; Poll Shows Gains

Tuesday, July 9th, 2013

Grant Tennille, ArkansasA couple marriage equality stories coming out of Arkansas this morning.

First off, the state’s top economic official Grant Tennille said he thinks marriage equality is a great idea for the state. SFGate reports:

“I believe that increasingly, particularly in the area of high tech, high skilled, knowledge-based jobs, that companies look for locations where all of their employees can be welcomed, all of their employees can be part of a community and all of their employees will be treated equally,” Tennille said at the news conference. “I think the first state in the South that moves in that direction will have a leg up.”

Meanwhile, a new poll from HRC showed strong support for marriage equality and employment protections from those under 30 in the state. THV11 reports:

Human Rights Campaign President and Arkansas native Chad Griffin returned to his home state today to unveil new polling looking at Arkansans’ changing views on LGBT equality, and to discuss what’s next in the fight for equality after the historic Supreme Court rulings. The bipartisan poll found that 61 percent of Arkansans under age 30 support marriage equality, and 63 support legislation that would ensure no one could be fired because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.

Overall support for marriage equality, though, is much lower, as reports:

Arkansans are more unfavorably (36 percent) than favorably disposed (31 percent) toward gay and lesbian people in general. Whereas a 55 percent majority of the country supports marriage equality, this number is at 38 percent in Arkansas.

There’s still a lot of work to do, clearly, but the next generation is on our side, even in the South. It’s really just a matter of time.

Find more articles and gay wedding resources in Arkansas.

Henry Rollins to GOP: All Those 16 Year Olds Will Be Able to Vote in 2016

Saturday, July 6th, 2013

Henry RollinsQueerty reports on punk rocker Henry Rollins, who has a warning for the GOP:

“Bad News for the Haters Dept.: You realize that all those obnoxious 16-year-olds you see everywhere, texting their friends who are standing next to them, will be able to vote in the 2016 elections. Do you think you will be able to sell them on your anti-gay/anti-woman/anti-brown/black platform? Do you think they want to end up like you? I bet they don’t. Gov. Bobby Jindal said that you all have to stop being the stupid party. I don’t think you can do it. How did equality become political? Because you can’t handle science, change or the truth. America is on the move, you are not.”

And they’re for marriage equality – youth support for marriage equality was at an astonishing 70% in March.

After Marriage Equality, What Else Needs to be Done?

Sunday, May 12th, 2013

lgbthomelessnessThis past week, there has been a massive media flurry about marriage equality, with both Delaware and Rhode Island both passing marriage equality laws and the Minnesota House voting to legalize same-sex marriage. News networks have been lauding the progress made by the LGBTQ movement, and to be fair, I was pretty excited myself. I mean, three states in one week isn’t too shabby. I was starting to think that, just maybe, LGBTQ equality could become a reality in the United States.

Then I saw this infographic.

According to the infographic jointly put out by the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and the Human Rights Campaign, 1.7 million young Americans experience homelessness every year, and of those, 20-40% are LGBTQ-identified. Which means that at a minimum there are 340,000 LGBTQ youth who experience homeless on an annual basis, and there could be as many as 680,000 LGBTQ youth experiencing homelessness this year alone.

Now I know that infographics can often be based on somewhat-questionable statistics, but still, how are there that many homeless LGBTQ kids?

Authored By Jacob Tobia – See the Full Story at PolicyMic

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USA: Young Marriage Equality Opponents Vow to Soldier On

Thursday, March 21st, 2013

The few young marriage equality opponents out there refuse to believe that theirs is a lost cause. The New York Times reports:

They identify themselves as part of the “pro-marriage movement” and see themselves at the beginning of a long political struggle, much like the battle over abortion. If they can begin shifting the terms of the debate away from gay rights and toward the meaning of marriage, they say, they have a chance to survive short-term defeats. “The primary challenge that our side faces right now is the intense social pressure,” said Joseph Backholm, 34, the executive director of the Family Policy Institute of Washington. “To the extent that the other side is able to frame this as a vote for gay people to be happy, it will be challenging for us.”

Yeah, good luck with that.

Australia: Young Liberals Call for Marriage Equality Conscience Vote

Saturday, February 2nd, 2013

Sydney, Australia Opera HouseThe Liberal Party’s youth wing wants the party to allow members to vote their consciences instead of the party line on marriage equality, Gay Star News reports:

Australian advocates for marriage equality have welcomed support from today’s federal Young Liberals Conference for a conscience vote for all Liberal senators and MPs, saying it increases pressure on opposition leader Tony Abbott to allow all his MPs to vote according to their personal beliefs. At the Young Liberal federal conference in Hobart this afternoon a motion from the Victorian division in favor of a conscience vote gained two-thirds support.

As always, it’s the younger folks leading the way on equality.