Gay College student commits suicide after roommate broadcasts him having sex online
This story is all over the news, and incredibly impactful and painful to me. The story comes out of Rutgers University, where on September 19th, Tyler Clementi asked his roomate to give him the room for the night- heres the story from Gawker.com:
Students said Clementi asked his roommate Ravi to leave the room so that he could have time alone with a guest on the evening of Sept. 19.
A strange, older male later arrived at the room, they said. Ravi went to (molly) Wei’s room, where he used a computer to access footage of the room from his webcam, they said.
As this was going on, Ravi tweeted and updated his facebook status, inviting others to watch the encounter as
The next day, Tyler Clementi jumped to his death off the George Washington Bridge, where his body has finally been recovered. No one is sure whether his apparent suicide was caused by the invasion of privacy and “outing ” of him by his roommate, but it seems pretty likely. Ravi and the other person involved in the web-camming, Molly Wei, are being charged with invasion of privacy, and both are out of jail, Molly on her own recognizance, and Ravi on $25,000 bail.
Now, Im not sure, but it looks to me like Ravi was trying to exploit his roommates personal information for malicious fun, and at the same time it took a personal part of Tyler and made it public. This, to me, is in-excusable. However, to me the worst part of this is not what Ravi did, but the fact that this kind of shame and negative connotations are still being put on people of alternate sexualities.
Shame, and the hate and pre-disposed judgement that comes with that, are ruining the lives of people who are “different” or “against the norm”. As a Christian, I look at this with disgust and deep, intense sadness- that there is so little hope in this situation for this young man that he would, or even could, be driven to do something like this.
I researched this story a bit further and found out that Tyler had posted on a gay message board, justusboys.com (Use this link with discretion, as it contains explicit adult material) where tyler was asking advice as to how to deal with this situation, then the awkward cessation of his posts and the realization of those in conversation with him that the boy in the news who commited suicide was, in fact, the same person they had been talking to.
There is so much pain, frustration, anger, remorse, sadness, and disgust that comes to me when I read this- I hope and pray we, as people, can get over our issues with others and stereotypes that cause this kind of incredible damage and begin to bring healing and hope to our communities. If we can stop being so concerned about how we are perceived, stop building up walls and make more bridges, really enter into life, together, as a group, not simply a collection of individuals- maybe then we can start becoming more of who we were made to be.