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How Many Will It Take?
How many will it take? How many lives will be ruined, beaten, destroyed, and most commonly, taken? People have been ostracized by a fact; one simple fact. The facts are different for everyone. Different people have different aspects to themselves. Some have a darker skin tone and some have glasses. Some went to private school while others are home-schooled. Does that give you a reason to shove them away? Some people think so.
I am a sixteen, almost seventeen, male. I have dark brown hair and eyes. White skin covers a big body that is not all muscle. I have interests in the sci-if and the programming aspects of life, and I actually understand it. I am proud of who I am. I have become the kind of person I enjoy being. It was not always like that though.
I have had my share of bullying and teasing. I have been a target for some people for different and various things. During the time it was “un-cool” to be smart; I was the smartest one in the class (heck, as of now I am in the top 10 of my Junior HS class). I have been attacked for my smarts, and I have been attacked for my fatness. I have become better with my health, but during elementary school I was the biggest one in the school.
On top of that, there was the fact that I had to have a speech class. I had to have “special education” for the fact that I was “mute” for the ifrst few years of my life. I spoke one word (which my mother keeps saying was “cat” but I do not know), and then kept my mouth shut for years afterwards. We are unsure why, but we have our speculations.
I have also been accused of being gay. I will admit I have thought about it, and when I am accused again I will just truthfully say, “Yes, I am gay.” Honestly, I am not sure, but I believe it is true. I can be considered bi-sexual, and you know what? I am proud of it. I have a loving and supportive girlfriend, but I have had the occasional thought about males. It doesn’t affect me.
Now, enough talking about me; I have seen in many places people getting criticized for many different things. I have seen truly special education kids getting picked on (which I think is the lowest you can go). I have seen the aftermath of kids being beaten for what they believe in.
Why are they attacked, criticized, and just pushed away by a tiny thing; one small thing that would not hurt anyone. Why are we as humans cruel enough to push the victims to the point of death? Then, on top of that, some will come back later and scream out things such as “He/She disserved to die!”
Why can we not see that they are the same as us? The Declaration of Independence even says (and yes, you have heard this a many of times), “We hold these truths to be self-evident: That all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness…” I will repeat, “Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” “…That all men are created equal…” All men. Not one, not a percentage, but all men. No, they are not talking about being physically equal, but that all men have the same rights.
As Americans, we have the right to live. We have the right to freedom (liberty), and we have the right to the “pursuit of happiness.” Let me give a common example that affects all three rights listed right there.
Someone committing suicide because he/she was teased for being gay.
Let me help explain things a bit. This one simple example affects the listed rights in this way:
Life: Suicide is the act of taking one’s own life. The right to life has been denied to the person. Yes, it was denied in part by the accused his or herself, but it was mostly denied by the accusers.
Liberty: We have the freedom to be gay. It is not something we can control. It is just who we are, and we have the freedom to be ourselves. The teasing and assaults take that freedom away.
The Pursuit of Happiness: We are endowed the right to happiness. Do you think that the accused is happy that he/she was being attacked for something he/she cannot control?
In conclusion, I ask my question again: How many will it take?
How many lives will it take to make people understand?