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17-Year Old Gay Teen Commits Suicide — Father Blames Anti-Gay Bullying

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An openly-gay 17-year old boy committed suicide in Rochester, Minnesota on Sunday, and his father is blaming anti-gay bullying as “a big part” of the cause of his son’s death. Jay ‘Corey’ Jones, also known as Corey Jay Jonestrader on his Facebook page, was a student at Century High School, and was bullied for years his father, JayBocka Strader, says.

“He said all of his life they always picked on him. He’d still try to keep his head up at school, but then he’d come home and be really sad about it,” Strader says, in a report at the Post Bulletin:

Jones, a member of Century’s gay-straight alliance, had an image on his Facebook page that said, “Gay & Proud.” He was open about his sexuality and occasionally wore tight, colorful tank tops and short-shorts to school, Strader said.

“He just got really depressed about it because the guys weren’t accepting him,” Strader said.

Jones jumped from a pedestrian bridge near Century High School on Sunday, according to police.

In response to an inquiry from the Post-Bulletin, schools Superintendent Michael Muñoz issued a statement acknowledging there are issues related to bullying in the district. He did not directly address Jones’ situation.

The district is in the planning stages of providing training and support for students, staff and families, Muñoz said, and will continue anti-bullying collaborations with Gov. Mark Dayton’s recently formed anti-bullying task force, Rochester police and others in the community.

“I want everyone to have on pink shirts and remember the Corey that tried to get the rights,” Strader said. Pink was one of Jones’ favorite colors, his dad said.

“When I saw him in pink, I really liked him in pink, and he was really happy,” Strader said. “I just told him that pink looked good on him.”

A report on Minnesota Public Radio yesterday added:

Last year, Jones told his dad, Jay Strader, he was gay. Strader immediately noticed a change.

“I just saw a difference in him I saw a smile, I saw a little more energy than actually being down and out and depressed-looking,” Strader said. “To me he felt a sign of relief, like, ‘Yeah I got over the hard part, right,’ you know.”

But coming out exposed Jones to other pressures, Strader said, primarily from bullies at school. Jones moved to Minnesota from Chicago two years ago. He lived in Minneapolis for a year before moving down to Rochester.

Strader said his son was comfortable with his sexual orientation. But the teasing Jones encountered at school turned into a constant struggle for him and he was diagnosed with depression.

“I wanted him to let me know what was going on with him. I didn’t get a chance to get that,” Strader. “I didn’t get a chance to find out what was going on inside his head.”

Strader said his son’s death Sunday has not sunk in yet. It’s been an emotional week for his family and him, as well as for many high school students in southeastern Minnesota.

Minnesota is currently the stage for a contentious battle for an anti-gay marriage constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage.

The funeral for Jay ‘Corey’ Jones will be held in Chicago on Saturday.

Our thoughts are with his family and friends.

Image: Facebook

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'FILTHY GARBAGE'

Experts Destroy ‘Historically Loathsome’ Lindsey Graham for Urging Schumer ‘Dismiss’ Impeachment So Nation Can ‘Heal’

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Legal and political experts are responding to U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham’s Sunday letter to incoming Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer with disgust and anger. Graham, an unwavering and unyielding devotee of President Donald Trump, slammed Democrats and those who support convicting Trump in a Senate trial after the House’s historic second impeachment of the outgoing president.

In his letter Graham argues against convicting Trump for incitement of insurrection in part because Vice President Mike Pence “stood in the breach of unconstitutional calls for him to overturn the 2020 election.” Those unconstitutional calls came from President Trump. His insurrectionist supporters then went to the Capitol hunting for the vice president, chanting, “Hang Mike Pence!”

He also says convicting Trump would delay “the healing of this great nation.” Experts call that argument false, and say that holding Trump to account is the only way for the nation to heal.

The response to Graham’s letter was immediate, and on social media few held back their punches.

“We are witnessing the largest under-reaction to a violent insurrection led by a sitting president in the history of humankind, folks,” said Condé Nast Legal Affairs Editor and Research Director Luke Zaleski. “It’s cause the Republican Party/trump are experts at one thing: Denying the premise of reality and convincing people anti-government is government.”

“No incitement is the new ‘no collusion,'” Zaleski continued. “A goalpost being moved. Trump fomented a riot that served as a coup attempt. It was likely planned and it was definitely encouraged. It was for him. It was to stop his loss. It was organized and spontaneous and stochastic. It was violent.”

Popehat, the popular law blog run by Ken White, tweeted a more succinct response.

The Washington Post’s Greg Sargent suggests Graham is engaging in extortion:

Former Obama HUD Deputy Assistant Secretary boils that thought down even further:

Historian Michael Beschloss:

Historian Kevin M. Kruse:

Democratic strategist and professor Tom Watson:

Economist and Dartmouth professor Danny Blanchflower:

Yale professor Howard Forman:

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'DESPERATE TO PROTECT TRUMP'

Rand Paul Slammed for ‘Breathtaking Political Cowardice’ Over Fear of Impeaching President

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In his column for the conservative Bulwark, former Republican National Committee spokesperson Tim Miller slammed Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) over comments he made in an interview where he expressed worries that the Republican Party would lose a substantial number of voters if they voted to impeach the president for sedition.

In the interview, Paul stated, “I didn’t agree with the fight that happened last week. I voted against over-turning the election. But at the same time, the impeachment is a wrongheaded, partisan notion. If Republicans go along with it, it will destroy the party. A third of the Republicans will leave the party.”

According to Miller, Paul’s admission was a stunning display of cowardice.

“The preponderance of failures by Republican elected officials over the last two months, and especially over the last two weeks, are due to purely political calculations. They can’t engage in a War on Terror against people they believe are their own voters,” Miller wrote. “The political cowardice here is breathtaking. Imagine thinking that one-third of your constituents were terrorist sympathizers and not attempting to do something about it. But while this Republican cowardice shouldn’t be excused, at least you can understand it.”

According to Miller, Republicans have been the do-nothing party for the past year, failing to hold any confirmation hearings and leaving the country leaderless.

“Why are we in this position? Because before January 6 they were terrified of hurting Donald Trump’s feelings by taking any actions which suggested that Joe Biden was going to be the next president. And now they are keeping out of session so that they don’t have to confront the article of impeachment that the House has passed,” he wrote. “In other words: Because they were desperate to protect Trump, both then and now.”

You can read more here.

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'SOUNDS ABOUT WHITE'

GOP Lawmaker Says Black People Are Glad Their Ancestors Were Brought Over as Slaves

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Terry Jones

Terry Jones, a Republican lawmaker in North Dakota, has submitted a bill that would require state forms to list “American” as a racial choice option because he’s “disgusted” with how race is used by bad actors to divide the country, he says.

In trying to explain how his bill would unite Americans by focusing “on commonalities rather than differences,” he told the press that “citizens of all backgrounds are proud to be American,” adding that Black Americans are “glad their ancestors were brought here as slaves.”

InForum reports: “Jones said he believes in this sentiment because he read a Reader’s Digest article from the 1980s in which a Black doctor visited an African country during a period of civil conflict and made remarks about being grateful that his ancestors had been taken to America. Forum News Service’s attempts to find the article were unsuccessful.

Jones’ ignorant comment are just part of a long history of racist lawmakers saying that people of color should be grateful for their ill-treatment in this country just because it’s better than living in poorer nations — hardly an endorsement of great living under the American system.

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