I remember a nation finally waking up, bewildered, after Tyler Clementi, the 18 year-old Rutgers student, jumped off the George Washington Bridge because his roommate secretly recorded him fooling around with another guy.
But it didn’t end. That very next week, Asher Brown, 13, shot himself in the head in Texas; and Harrison Chase Brown (15), Raymond Chase (19), Felix Sacco (17) and Caleb Nolt (14) had all taken their lives.
I’m sad that I cannot remember Cody J. Barker, 17, who hanged himself earlier in the month in Wisconsin, my home state.
This rash of suicides by so many kids struck our nation at its core. Finally, we were hearing stories. Finally, we could not longer pretend to ignore the fact that every last one of them was gay. Finally, we were forced to ask: Why? Why is this happening? Are gay kids weaker, more fragile than the rest of us? Can they not take a joke? Why would so many of them choose to end their lives – as if there were an epidemic? What could ever be so bad? More to the point, whose fault is it?
School bullies were to blame. Bullies relentlessly harass and intimidate their piers who are—or are perceived to be—queer. They have our kids’ blood on their hands.
But where do these kids who bully learn to bully? Who tells them it’s okay? Do we really believe ourselves when we say that they are the main problem?
We know better. We know that the way certain people misuse religion is the primary source of all the harm that is done to people simply because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. (In fact, Bishop Gene Robinson says that people of faith are “95% the source of all the oppression we LGBT people have experienced in our lives.”)
This week The New York Times reports that the American Family Association, an extremist religious group, is taking aim at a project called Mix It Up Day, where children are asked to sit with someone at lunch who they wouldn't normally sit with.  The American Family Association is calling the project “a nationwide push to promote the homosexual lifestyle in public schools” and – even worse – is telling parents to keep their children home from school on Mix It Up Day, October 30th.
Already 200 schools have canceled the event. We have to speak up.
We also know that bullying is a behavior, not an identity. Kids can bully, but they are not, inherently, bullies. When we come together in solidarity, when we voice our values of the inherent dignity of all people, we can curb bullying.
Today is Spirit Day, the annual day in October when millions of Americans wear purple to speak out against bullying and to show their support for LGBT youth.
As people of faith and moral commitment, we wear purple because we know the harm that some of our brothers and sisters have done “in God’s name” to LGBT youth. We wear purple in solidarity, in friendship, in moral commitment to take a stand against bullying no matter where we find it – so that all people can live free of fear, intimidation and shame for simply being who they were born to be.
Today, we’re all purple.
Jake Goodman is the Director of the Groundswell of Courage campaign for LGBT dignity.
 As far as I know, no lesbian, bisexual or transgender youth killed themselves in September 2010. Beyond this relatively narrow frame of time, of course, LBT kids took and continue to take their lives. The media just hasn’t reported on it as much.
Today, I have exciting news to share: On Monday, Misael was granted a 6-month stay of removal. This protects him from deportation for six months and allows him to resume his life and work.
Very late last night, because of a problem with the lethal injection drug, Kelly's execution was postponed. And now, all planned executions in Georgia have been temporarily postponed.  This is incredibly important. Brian Terrell was scheduled to be executed in Georgia one week from today. Wow. You helped make this happen!
As people of faith, we believe in the power of forgiveness, mercy, and transformation. Yet despite the testimony of numerous clergy, theology professors, and her two children pleading for their mothers’ life, the Board of Pardons and Paroles condemned Kelly to death.
Today, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted to reclassify the Internet as a public utility, as essential as water and electricity, and adopted strong protections to keep the Internet open and free for this and future generations.
Right now the Internet is under attack, and I'm in the fight to save it. There's a big vote this Thursday and if people like us speak up now, we can make the moral case for why we need a free and open Internet.
After living in Sanctuary for 58 days in Philadelphia, Angela was granted a stay of deportation by our local ICE director.1 Now, she’s using her freedom to make sure no one in Sanctuary is left behind.