Thursday, September 30, 2010

A 13 Year Old Understands

Today, I was copied on a message on Facebook from our niece Kelly regarding her 13 year old son, Andrew.  I feel compelled to share part of the message: 

"He is deeply perplexed and saddened by the recent suicides of young gay men/boys and has actually witnessed such bullying in his own school. He wants you to know that he has promised to do whatever he can to stop the tormenting, or at least help ease the suffering of the victims by being a friend, and voice for them.

He has written a letter to our senator, and to President Obama asking for stronger penalties for both bullying, and hate crimes all over the world, but especially in schools and in online forums."

As I read this message, my heart filled with overwhelming pride.  Proud that Andrew stands with those that are oppressed.  Proud that Andrew rises above social conformity to be his own person (at age 13 no less), and proud that Andrew has two wonderful and loving parents who have taught him that there is no room for hate. 
13 years old.  He's at a period in his  life when social pressures are at an extreme, and this young man stands up and says, "enough."  His willingness to be a voice for victims of hate, his willingness to wrap his arms around those that are oppressed and let them know that they are loved, is so moving to me.  I'm so incredibly proud of him and I'm so moved by his kindness and the size of his heart. 
If a teenager can figure this out and understand that hate should not be tolerated, why can't adults?


Elaine said...

What a sad and at the same time heartwarming story. Bravo to Andrew!

mike said...

I agree - such a tragedy. Unfortunately it won't change things as much as we would like, but hopefully a few minds will alter their views on gay/hate crime issues (which is a welcoming thought)!

spacie_stacie said...

Go Andrew Go! It is so great to see kids in this day and age not looking at any boundaries, no matter what is facing him! I wish more kids were as smart as him, I really do!