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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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CORRUPTION

Trump Pardons Former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn

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President Donald J. Trump pardoned his former national security adviser Michael Flynn Wednesday. Flynn had previously pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI in December 2017.

Flynn was originally charged with admitting that he had misled investigators about details of his conversations with the Russian ambassador during Trump’s presidential transition.

Trump’s pardon of Flynn marks a full embrace of the retired general he had ousted from the White House after only 22 days on the job — and a final salvo against the Russia investigation that shadowed the first half of his term in office.

This story is developing.

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CORRUPTION

Ivanka Trump and Her Family Will Have a Rude Awakening When They Leave the White House

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President Donald J. Trump is about to leave the White House in less than eight weeks, which means he’s taking his entire brood with him to new post-White House life.  Among those seeking a new residence and career: his daughter, Ivanka Trump.

“When Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner first took jobs in the White House in 2017, they presumably assumed that eight years later, they’d return to New York and be crowned the king and queen not just of an exclusive social set but the city — nay, the entire globe. Vogue would put them on the cover of the September issue. Billionaires would beg them to sit on the boards of their companies to lend an air of credibility,” reporter Bess Levin wrote for Vanity Fair.

“Instead, they’re being unceremoniously booted out of the place after just four years, with significantly worse reputations than when they started,” Levin added. “To be clear, no one was falling all over themselves to get an audience with the couple before Donald Trump was inaugurated. But they weren’t reviled among the people whose opinions they presumably once and probably do still care about, with just a narrow portion of Manhattan reportedly looking forward to their return and an open invitation from Staten Island to take the ferry out and put down roots.”

Levin added that “a former friend of” Ivanka and Kushner told her Vanity Fair colleague, Emily Jane Fox, “Everyone with self-respect, a career, morals, respect for democracy — or who doesn’t want their friends to shame them both in private and public — will steer clear.”

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BAD PRESIDENT

Trump Cancels Trip to Pennsylvania to attend Fake Election Hearing with Rudy Giuliani

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President Donald Trump’s trip to witness a purported “voter fraud” hearing has been abruptly canceled.

Although the president was scheduled to travel with personal attorney Rudy Giuliani on Wednesday to Gettysburg, Pennsylvania to watch a partisan GOP hearing on supposed voting irregularities, CNN’s Jeremy Diamond is reporting that the trip was called off late Wednesday morning.

Although no reason was given for the cancelation, Diamond notes that it came “after Giuliani was exposed to a second person in the last week who tested positive for coronavirus.”

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