I am seriously pissed off. And also very sad.
A 17year old is beaten to within an inch of his life. By his friends. Why? Well, the fact that he is gay obviously bothered his ‘friends’ and so, they beat the shit out of him.
As the mother of a gay son, I am horrified, saddened, angry and yes, pissed off by this news.
Not only because this could happen to my boy (and let's face it, this could happen to anyone else’s son/daughter/ brother/sister/ mother/father);
But also because I really believed that my son was fortunate to be born in a time where tolerance and compassion were part of everyone’s consciousness; and his sexual identify would not define him as a person and he would not be labelled; where he could be and do what he chose since “”Everyone has the right to life and to live in freedom and safety” (Universal declaration of Human Rights).
Is society still stuck in the mind-set of that sea of sameness as it has been since the beginning of time?...That same mind-set where anyone or anything, that is different, even a little bit, is automatically clocked and registered as abnormal and unacceptable.
Granted that on the surface governments, corporations and businesses are seen to be working towards becoming more inclusive in the work place and they do make some effort to educate and inform people.
But really? Do we need government mandates and training to accept gays, women and all diversity groups in the work place and in the community?
WTF? Are we that logically and consciousness deprived?
And what is normal and acceptable to this society? Here's what I think that list probably looks like and most likely, it has not changed much over the centuries:
- A man can only be in a relationship with a woman. End of.
- Its ok to eat animals that have been made to suffer needlessly and then brutally killed as long as you buy the meat at the supermarket.
- Always worship that invisible god; the one who is vengeful, self-righteous and vindictive and who has a major issue with anyone who is NOT a straight, white, Christian male
- If you have lots of money, you are automatically absolved of all wrongs
- Making a bad choice makes you a bad person. Forever.
- I am ok with everything as long as it does not affect me. In any way.
- It’s not ok to judge but it is definitely ok and encouraged to criticise, publicly humiliate and ostracise anyone or anything that is unfamiliar or different.
- Success is measured in the accumulation of the number of possessions you own
- Be politically correct on the surface; as long as you are seen to be PC that’s all that matters.
- Everyone is considered my brother and sister as long as I am kept completely unaware of their existence.
What an incredibly close minded society we live in !
We have not evolved into decent human beings; we just got better at hiding how we really feel.
Social media makes it so easy for us to be universally seen as the intellectual, open minded, spiritual, accepting, non judgemental, free spirits we so obviously are not.
We can visibly support same sex marriages, express outrage at the merciless treatment of battery chickens, sign petitions to stop child labour, domestic violence, child abuse… all the while we are smugly secure in the knowledge that we will never, ever be called upon to publicly defend any of the shit we are seen to be supporting.
Social media lets us tick off that box that says to the world…”yes I am a tolerant person who believes and supports everyone’s basic human right to live, regardless of their religious beliefs, sexual orientation, cultural background, gender or politics”. The sad reality is that there is no substance or conviction or belief behind that ticked box.
By the way, this is not an isolated incident; this senseless, aggressive, bullying is rampant the world over against gays, Jews, Romas, women, children, the list goes on and on.
Here is a quick snapshot of recent UK hate crimes statistics:
Research by London LGBT hate crime charity Galop shows 98 homophobic and transphobic crimes are recorded each week by police across Britain
Figures show hate crimes against Jewish people rose by 36% to 304 in first half of2014, followed by 130 in July alone
How many more people need to be beaten, bullied, shamed and killed because of who they are or what they believe in? At what point do we draw the line in the sand and say enough is enough?
As you read the article about Dylan,many of you will probably shrug your shoulders, as in ‘it’s not my problem’ and move on; others may spare a couple of seconds lamenting the state of the world. But for a significant number, it is a very real reminder that their world is not safe and that they live under the constant threat of violence and abuse.This is not ok; I need the world to be a safe place for my son and for everyone else’s son and daughter. We all do!