In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content:

  • Boom
  • Sammy Dominguez and Zack Taylor

Shotguns sound from the throats of classmates,"freak""dyke"

Slurs,slung like hammersdemolishing any self-prideI had mustered upjust to showmy faceat school today.

"Fucking faggot."

I duck into a bathroom stallwaiting for the halls to clearfinally reach my deskas I mendmy woundsfrom their words.

my state of mindis anythingbut healed.

I'm thinking... today cold steel could ease my pain.

The jokes were never ending.I stopped feeling safe.Today.they keyed "lesbian" into my car.

Today.they spat in my facetold me towipe off my mascara.

Today.I found death threatsin my notebook.

Today. [End Page 96]

I found outI can fit in a locker.

What do you do with a box of bullets when you only need one?

Raped.They think they can fix me.

Beaten downevery timeI walk home.

I can't even really go home.The door is never open for me.My mother always wanted a princess,All she sees in me,is a dragon.

I was never the popular jockmy father wanted.When he looks at mehe thinks "faggot."

So why leave a note, when nobody ever cared?

It's not like I had any true friends.Harassment helps 28% of LGBT teens give up on educationNobody cares about who I am.Teachers ignore homophobic insults 97% of the time.Maybe I deserved every dirty slur.LGBTQ youth are 4-5 times more likely to experience severe depression.

The weight in my hand is nothing compared to the weight in my chest.

There is no place for me, this world doesn't want me.1 in 4 homeless youth identify as LGBTQ. who come out of the closet get tossedonto the streetMaybe I should just leave.LGBTQ teens are 2-3 times more likely to commit suicide than their straight peers.I hate everything I am.3 LGBTQ teens commit suicide every day.

Billy Lucas, age 15Asher Brown, age 13Cody Barker, age 17Chloe Lacey, age 19 [End Page 97] Tyler Clementi, age 18Samantha Johnson, age 13Aiyisha Hassan, age 19Harrison Brown, age 15Seth Welsh, age 13Raymond Chase, age 19Brandon Elizares, age 16Phillip Parker, age 14Zach Harrington, age 19Jamey Rodemeyer, age 14Jack Reese, age 17

Nothing is more inviting now than shiny steel shaking as it sets against my temple.

I don't understand why I was born a fuck-upWhy it had to be me that no one would loveWhy the only thing that shined in my life,Was a hand gun.

So.Boom.That's it. [End Page 98]



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pp. 96-98
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