The latest victim of anti-gay rhetoric

Kenneth Weishuhn, Jr., 14.

I’d like all of you self-righteous anti-gay crusaders to look into the eyes of fourteen year-old Kenneth Weishuhn, Jr.

Do you see any evil there? Do you see any perversion there? Do you see any threat there?

Do you see the eyes of a young man with a life of unlimited potential cut short by the anti-gay bullying your vile rhetoric fuels and encourages? No, you probably don’t see that young man. Hate is blinding, as you continually demonstrate. Perhaps that’s why Bryan Fischer and his American Family Association (AFA), Tony Perkins and his Family Research Council (FRC), and Peter LaBarbera and his Americans for Truth about Homosexuality (AFTAH) are all listed as “hate groups” by the Southern Poverty Law Center because of their repeated use of stereotypes and lies in combination with bogus “research” to demean and degrade gay and lesbian Americans and, along with their brethren, blame them for pretty much anything and everything.

Kenneth is the latest victim of anti-gay bullying encouraged by the religious right’s rhetoric and their efforts to curtail or stop anti-bullying legislation and policies.

Kenneth Weishuhn, Gay Iowa Teen, Commits Suicide After Allegedly Receiving Death Threats

A gay Iowa teen has taken his own life after friends and family say that classmates sent him death threats on his cell phone and made him the subject of a Facebook hate group.

As KTIV is reporting, 14-year-old Kenneth Weishuhn, Jr., began to be teased and bullied by classmates at South O’Brien High School after he came out earlier this year. “People that were originally his friends, they kind of turned on him,” sister Kayla Weishuhn, a sophomore, is quoted as saying. “A lot of people, they either joined in or they were too scared to say anything.”

The anti-gay teasing reportedly also continued online, where classmates created a hate group against gays and added Kenneth’s friends as members, and got even worse when the freshman started receiving death threats from students on his phone.

Weishuhn’s mother Jeannie Chambers said her son told her, “Mom, you don’t know how it feels to be hated.’ . . .”

Groups such as AFA, FRC, and AFTAH claim to be “Christian” organizations whose “opposition” to homosexuality is biblically based. Problem: Jesus said absolutely nothing about what today we call “homosexuality.” Misogynist Paul did in his letter to the Romans (1:26–27). But then again, he never met Jesus and was pretty much making things up as he went in his drive to create a religion in his own image: he thought celibacy was the ideal lifestyle. For Paul, marriage was an option only if one could not control his natural, human urges.

The Old Testament does have specific proscriptions against homosexual activities, but then again it also sanctions slavery, murdering those who work on the Sabbath or who wear clothing made of two different threads and, of course, stoning to death those nasty non-virgin brides.

I’ve been researching and writing about—online and in peer-reviewed journals—the religious right’s campaign of hate and disinformation targeting gay and lesbian American for a decade now. They haven’t changed their tune, but they have lost credibility. Nevertheless, they continue to make fools of themselves and expose the extent of their sadistic pathologies as was so well illustrated recently by Sean Harris, senior pastor at Berean Baptist Church in Fayetteville, North Carolina:

N.C. Preacher Tells Parents to Crack Wrists, Punch Effeminate Children
By Neal Broverman
May 01 2012

The words of a homophobic North Carolina preacher are reverberating around the Internet today, following a sermon in which he advocated physically assaulting toddlers with “limp wrists.” . .  .

“Sean Harris . . . the senior pastor at Berean Baptist Church in Fayetteville, is a strong supporter of North Carolina’s proposed antigay Amendment One. In Sunday’s sermon, Harris screams like a maniac about cracking limp wrists and punching young children who exhibit gender-variant behavior. . . . Listen to the audio, obtained by GoodAsYou.org.

Violence against gays was also the advice of Dominic Dieter, a DJ at Cleveland rock station WMMS:

Ohio DJ Says Man’s Gay Daughter Should Be Raped
By Neal Broverman
April 27 2012

The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation is on the offensive after a Cleveland morning DJ made a horrifying comment that suggested a man allow his gay daughter to be raped.

The comment was made by Dominic Dieter, a DJ at Cleveland rock station WMMS. Speaking during the Rover’s Morning Glory show, Dieter was discussing a man who wrote the radio station about his gay daughter. “You should get one of your friends to screw your daughter straight,” Dieter said, according to viewers. . . .”

In his “apology,” Dieter had the audacity to say, “And I want to make it clear; there was absolutely no intention to promote physical or sexual violence.” How does one advocate rape without promoting physical and sexual violence?

Bryan Fischer, Tony Perkins, Peter LaBarbera, Sean Harris, Dominic Dieter: you can’t be held legally responsible, but your constant demeaning and mocking of gay men and women makes you morally culpable for the bullying-provoked suicide deaths of young gay teens and the homophobic violence perpetrated against every gay and lesbian person. You incite and justify violence. You’re a disgrace to the religion you claim to champion.

PrintFriendly

2 Responses to The latest victim of anti-gay rhetoric

  1. Pray for our country, our president and ll the mentally sick people that think they are God and can judge the world. What did Jesus say?

    • One thing all these comments show is that conmig out is a quite variable experience. It does depend a lot on the person, the situation and the others to whom he comes out.Many have a good experience and receive affirmation and support. Some have a very bad experience. Recent research shows that 50% of Americans aged 18 and over agree that Homosexuality should be accepted by society. Acceptance does vary by age or generation. Among those 18-29, almost one-third (63%) agree with the statement. There is less support among older generations: 30-49, 51%; those 50-64, 48%; those 65+, 35%. I think it’s pretty good that just over one-third of OLD people accept the legitimacy of homosexuality.One of the more surprising findings for some people is that among traditional Christian groups, Catholics are the most accepting of the idea that homosexuality should be accepted by society. Over half (58%) of all Catholics and a whopping 72% of young Catholics accept the idea of the legitimacy of homosexuality. For other Christian groups the respective percentages are: Mainline White Protestants: 56%, 69%. For Black Protestants: 39%, 51%. for Evangelical Christians: 26%, 39%. Besides Catholic acceptance two other noteworthy findings: Young Blacks are much more accepting than their older generations, and, even Evangelical youth are increasingly more tolerant/accepting of homosexuality.These results show that young people have a much better climate in which to come out. Yea!!!But I’m still concerned about those in junior high and high school. So many (not just gays) are confused about a lot of things, not just sexual orientation or behavior. These years can be very difficult. There are all kinds of competitions during junior hi and high school.I have worked diligently for anti-bullying laws: the Matthew Shepherd Law at the Federal level and a new, expanded anti-bulling law here in NC,because of severe bullying og gays or those other kids perceive as being gay. Along with other minorities gays are frequently harassed, bullied, or beaten up just because they are gay. Some are driven to suicide.These young people should stand tall about their orientation. But they, more so than college students and other adult gays, must be circumspect about the decisions they make and the public ramifications of their decisions to come out.They, more than adults, require and deserve greater support and love. I long for the day, and will work tirelessly, that whenever we come out as gay, it will truly be no more exceptional than announcing that we are left-handed.BTW, I AM left-handed and you might be surprised that southpaws are teased, made fun of and must fit into a right-handed world.