Unfinished Lives

Remembering LGBT Hate Crime Victims

Another Tennessee Gay Teen Bullied to Death

Phillip Parker, 14: Bullied for being gay, he felt life was not worth living.

Gordonsville, Tennessee – The body of a 14-year-old gay boy was found by his parents and grandparents Friday, along with a suicide note begging his mother to help him. Phillip Parker committed suicide after being relentlessly bullied for his sexual orientation at Gordonsville High School. WSMV reports that Parker’s parents learned the magnitude of the bullying problem in the school only after he took his life.

This latest gay teen suicide takes place in a state riven with anti-gay controversy.  Recent “Don’t Say Gay,” “License to Bully,” and anti-transgender “Bathroom” bills are making their way through the Tennessee State Legislature, all attempting to stigmatize and debase LGBTQ people. Correlations have been made between high profile anti-gay news stories and a heightened number of violent incidents involving LGBTQ people around the nation.

Young Phillip was the person most likely to tell friends they were beautiful.  His mom said he was energetic, loving, fun, and happy.  But his grandmother reported to WSMV that he confided to her that he was burdened by the bullying, “like he had a big rock on his chest.”  The family said they had complained about the bullying to school officials, but the problem only got worse.

News 5 reports that over a hundred contacts with the Parker family after Phillip’s death added details to the bullying situation at the school. The family said some of these stories showed just how obvious the anti-gay bullying had become there.  His grandfather, Paul Harris, said to News 5: “Because he was gay, he got mistreated physically, mentally by several people out there at the school, and I am very resentful as a result of it. A sweet kind person like Phillip took it out on himself, he killed himself to get out of the pain.” 

No cause of death has yet been officially released by law enforcement authorities.  School officials have not returned calls for comment to the press.

January 23, 2012 Posted by | Anglo Americans, Anti-LGBT hate crime, anti-LGBT hate crime murder, Bullycide, Bullying in schools, gay teens, GLBTQ, Hate Crimes, Heterosexism and homophobia, LGBTQ, LGBTQ suicide, Tennessee, transphobia | , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Anti-gay bullying is a theological issue

Here at the Unfinished Lives Project we would like to a moment to say thank you to  Cody J. Sanders for the best treatment of the bullying crisis from a theological perspective we have seen!

The article is entitled: “Why Anti-Gay Bullying is a Theological Issue” and it was published on religious dispatches. This article is a must read for all people of faith.

Thanks again Cody for this compelling argument.

Cody J. Sanders is a Baptist minister and Ph.D. student in Pastoral Theology and Counseling at Brite Divinity School in Fort Worth, TX. Cody was a Fellow in the inaugural class of the Human Rights Campaign Summer Institute for Religious and Theological Study and is a participant in the Beyond Apologetics symposium on sexual identity, pastoral theology, and pastoral practice.

October 3, 2010 Posted by | Anglo Americans, Anti-LGBT hate crime, anti-LGBT hate crime murder, bi-phobia, Bisexual persons, Bullying in schools, Campus Pride, death threats, gay men, gay teens, gun violence, Hanging, harassment, Hate Crimes, hate crimes prevention, hate speech, Heterosexism and homophobia, Human Rights Campaign, LGBT teen suicide prevention, LGBTQ suicide, Media Issues, Politics, Popular Culture, Public Theology, religious hate speech, religious intolerance, Remembrances, Social Justice Advocacy, South Carolina, Special Comments, stabbings, stalking, Stomping and Kicking Violence, suicide, Texas, transgender persons | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Anti-gay bullying is a theological issue

   

%d bloggers like this: