At last night’s Spirit Day candlelight vigil in Goodale Park, a couple hundred community members came out to show their support for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) youth who have taken their lives or been severely impacted by bullying. It was hosted by Stonewall Columbus in honor of Bullying Prevention Month. Passionate speakers including Karla Rothan, Paul Richmond, Linda Regula, Tayo Clyburn, and Kaleidoscope Youth Center inspired us with tales of resilience and visions of a violence-free world. The You Will Rise Project, created by Richmond and Regula, will present an exhibition of artwork by high school students who have been affected by bullying on November 18 at the Columbus Museum of Art.
Today is Spirit Day. It has been reported that up to 77% of students have been victimized by some form of bullying. If you know any young people who have been teased, scorned, or belittled, consider reaching out to them. Offer a reminder that it gets better. Bullying is real and it’s ugly, but love is stronger than hate, and together we can overcome it.
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