1. EchtKultig says

    You do have to wonder if reporting on things of this nature in the local media – particularly anonymous bullying versus physical gay bashings – just encourages other parties to get the attention they seek by carrying out copycat crimes.

  2. EchtKultig says

    Don’t get me wrong. The school and their police officer should fully investigate the first case. Maybe set a trap with a concealed video camera. If they won’t take action, then contact the media. I’m just questioning the benefit of putting the media spotlight on it every time it happens no matter the outcome or severity. Presumably, every time a kid leaves another kid a note along the lines of “you’re fat, I’m going to kill you” the principal can in theory find the perp and give them an appropriate punishment, without it needing news coverage.

  3. Jay says

    This makes me wonder whether it is a single person or a group of bigots acting together. It seems like they’re scanning social media for vulnerable local targets. Cowards who think they can get away with murder by driving gay teens to commit suicide.

  4. Chris says

    If you go that that first students Twitter account you’ll see that pretty much all of his fellow students are victim-blaming him, justifying the letter, downplaying it, or simply dismissing it as a hoax.

    They seem too busy worrying about their obscure little schools non-reputation, to take time out and worry about their fellow student. Too busy attacking the victim and not the person who committed a crime.

  5. SpaceCadet says

    So I guess now the people who were making comments here about the first gay student at the school coming out and automatically suspecting a hoax will eat their own words.

  6. anon says

    It’s very unusual for death threats to persist unless the person doing it is deranged or an ex-lover of some sort. I think we can discount the latter. Perhaps the threats and intimidation will abate over the next few weeks? That’s probably what the police are hoping for.

  7. says

    KUDOS to KMSP again for their excellent coverage and frank talk about religious motivated hate directed at innocent kids.

    This clip goes to show that our raised voices on social media sites is one of the most powerful tools in our equality struggle. A local news clip picked up by advocacy sites and spread nationally raises a lot of voices in support. A variety of voices that demand accountability from those in charge and offer advice & support to those in need.

    Ryan & Noah
    Pay the verbal abusers no heed. They have shallow lives and twisted minds. Always know that you have support when needed from your friends, loved ones and extended Family.

  8. Mack says

    I was thinking about that letter that was sent to Ryan. There are a number of clues in that letter which suggest that it may have been written by a girl.

    It is loquacious. It is above-average in terms of grammar, sentence structure and creative use of language. The author several times notes that other people also hate Ryan; it is important to the author to convey to Ryan that he is socially isolated. I delves into his supposed past and tries to shame him. And the letter urges Ryan to kill himself; the author does not talk about killing him.

    This is more in line with female bullying. For girls, it is more about social isolation and stigmatization imposed by groups of girls, rather than straightforward violence by individuals. A boy likely would have written a note of at most a few short sentences, probably with numerous grammatical errors. The author likely wouldn’t have tried to convince Ryan that others agreed with. And it would have threatened specific violent acts.

    The vandalism directed at the other kid is more classically male, but Ryan’s letter, assuming it is genuine, sure seems like it came from the hand of one of Minnesota’s fine upstanding Christian girls.

  9. Mack says

    Good point by Gigi.

    To me the attacks on gays in Russia were so disturbing not just because of the specific acts, but because of how people in Russia interpreted them.

    In Minnesota, we have 2 bad incidents, but everyone understands that they are criminal acts and that the 2 boys are the victims. Even the institutions that are not terribly helpful, like the school district, at least understand who is the criminal and who is the victim. And the victims go on TV with their families to talk about this.

    In Russia, the victims are terrified to be identified. The perpetrators are delighted with themselves, have no problem videotaping themselves, urge others to distribute the videos widely and are happy to be known by their real names. And many of these attacks happened outdoors in broad daylight. In some cases, passers by encouraged the attackers.
    And I think that up until perhaps the 1990s, Minnesotans would have treated these 2 victims much like the Russians do today.

  10. Bill says

    @Jay: If the bigots are doing that – scanning social-media sites for victims – and it is a small group of bigots, they can be caught. You can generate a short list of “people of interest” or whatever the euphemism du jour is by looking at the logs and intersecting the set pf IP addresses of computers that accessed each teens’ web pages.

    I hope that the police, FBI, or whomever is doing just that.

  11. Bill says

    Oh … didn’t notice that it was the same school. There might be too many people both know to get anywhere by looking for people who accessed both victims’ web pages. That’s perhaps less likely to be an issue if they are in different grades.

    Too bad the writing on the driveway was washed off immediately. If there was at least a photo of it, a handwriting comparison might help in getting a conviction or finding the perpetrator.

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