New York School Censors student gay

At 17, Tyler Johnson was selected by his school newspaper in Syracuse, New York Insight Knight to be highlighted in its Spotlight on Seniors series, he was not shy about his experiences.

In a TikTok, he said he wrote, “The biggest challenge I faced was growing up gay and coming out. I had to learn to feel good about myself and stay strong through bullying and all the negative experiences I had trying to navigate through life.

@_tylerrayjohnson_

so my school is homophobic 😛 #gay #gayteen #highschool #foryoupage #fypシ #discrimination

♬ original sound – Tyler 🏳️‍🌈

“You Can’t Say You’re Gay”

He said the lawyer he didn’t expect Mike O’Brien, the principal of Tully High School, to call him into his office and tell him to “rewrite his story: in particular, the part about the challenges he faces , the part where he is gay”. Johnson said O’Brien told him, “You can’t say you’re gay or that overcoming bullying is your accomplishment.”

When Johnson asked the question, O’Brien responded by saying it was nothing personal and only due to school policy. Johnson told the principal that he would rather the school newspaper not print the article at all, than make changes.

The principal refused to back down when Johnson’s mother demanded an explanation, repeating that he could not go against official district policy.

Johnson frustrated by the incident

Despite the immediate, overwhelming and supportive response from the Tully community, the homophobic encounter resulted in serious anxiety, Johnson said. the lawyer.

Johnson said he was frustrated with the whole incident: “You think we’re making progress, you know, then something like this happens and you realize we’re not as far as we think.”

According to the latest 2021 survey from The Trevor Project, indicates that 42% of young LGBTQI people, aged 12 to 17, have seriously considered suicide.

According to LGBTIQ+ Health Australia, in 2021, 59.1% of young LGBTIQ people aged 16-17 said they had had suicidal thoughts in the past 12 months, compared to 11.2% in the general population

In Australia, Attorney General Michaelia Cash’s department not only upheld the right of religious schools to fire teachers for their views on sexuality under the federal government’s revised Religious Discrimination Bill, but also let the door out. open to changes to the separate Sex Discrimination Act aimed at protecting LGBTQI students.

If you feel distressed while reading the story, you can contact support services.

For 24-hour crisis support and suicide prevention, call Lifeline on 13 11 14

For Australia-wide LGBTQI peer support call QLife on 1800 184 527 or live chat.

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