We must stop pandering to the pornographers and the perverts, who seek to target our children and destroy their lives [...] And don't misquote me as wanting to hurt homosexual people in any way; that would be a dastardly lie. My approach is live and let live. I just think my children, and your children, will be much better off, and much more successful getting married and raising a family. And I don't want them to be brainwashed into thinking that homosexuality is an equally valid or successful option. It isn't. (APPLAUSE)TPJ: This Paladino bigot accuses homosexuals as being perverts and targeting children but then turns around as says he's not hurting homosexuals by saying such things; and that he believes in the principle of "Live and Let Live?!!" This guy isn't just dangerously homophobic--he's also an unconscionable liar who contradicts his own words. His kind of talk is dangerous because is gives the impression that it's o.k. to hate homosexuals and thus treat them as less than human. It tacitly gives fuel to those who would seek to bully gays; or worse, physically hurt or kill them.
It also tells vulnerable, homosexual, young people that it's not o.k. to be who you are, which reinforces the pattern of bullying and susceptibility to suicidal thinking in these kids. If they honestly believe that they are perverts because of people like him then it doesn't take much for these kids to feel like they aren't worthy of life. Especially since they already probably feel confused with low self-esteem from the message they are getting from their peers.
Then he goes on to talk about protecting our kids from others destroying their lives?!! What does he think he's doing? Doing them a favor? He's accusing them of being brainwashed perverts!! It is shameful for an adult (let alone a would-be "leader" running to rule one of the biggest and most powerful states in America--New York) to reinforce such hateful talk when he knows very well that impressionable kids are listening; and will see his accusations to mean it's o.k. to bully, hate and terrorize gay teens and adults. It all starts in the home and it's the adults the young people look to for what is appropriate behavior and what isn't. Paladino is a sick and twisted man who shouldn't be elected to any position of trust and power--let alone governor of New York state.
The governor is responsible for ALL citizens and one of the most important duties in that office is to protect the well-being and lives of ALL citizens. That includes being the governor of gay and bisexual people too. It should never, ever be o.k. to treat homosexuals in such a manner regardless of how you personally feel about homosexuality. They are fellow, human beings who deserve to be protected as much any anyone else. Whether you disapprove of homosexuality or not; It is NOT o.k. to bully, intimidate or violate a gay persons' rights in any way. We also need to remind our kids that it's not o.k. to treat gay people in such a way. You can disagree with their lifestyle but it's not o.k. to treat them in an inhumane way. We can't stay s...ilent on this issue. Bullying of ALL kids must stop NOW. Period.
On a personal note: To all the young people out there who are gay or who think they might be gay, bisexual, lesbian or trans-sexual--you are not alone. You are not perverts. You are not a bad person and you certainly are not evil. There are many adults and fellow teens who are ready to welcome you into society and into our lives. You are NOT less than human and you do NOT deserve to be treated like you are less than human. It does get easier but high school is always hard but please know that you are not alone and that if you are thinking about taking your life--please talk to someone. Send me an email because I know a think or two about suicidal thinking and being misunderstood as I have a mental illness. Don't hurt yourself--you are beautiful just the way you are. People love you deeply and care about your happiness so much. We want the best for you and to grow up happy, healthy and strong. We are working hard to make the world safer for you--don't give up!!
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