A Thoroughly Modern Suicide

Blame the messenger if you like, but if this isn’t a sign of the times, I don’t know what is. Story everywhere, this version from the New York Post:

It was a fatal blow struck from cyberspace.

A shy Rutgers freshman was so humiliated when two cruel classmates secretly streamed live video of his gay encounter that he leaped to his death from the George Washington Bridge, authorities said yesterday.

“Jumping off the gw bridge sorry,” Tyler Clementi, 18, posted on his Facebook page just eight minutes before his plunge at around 8:50 p.m. on Sept. 22.

Clementi’s suicide led to a swift criminal probe and the arrest of his roommate, Dharun Ravi, and a fellow freshman, Molly Wei, for their alleged vile voyeurism.

NYPD Harbor Unit cops yesterday pulled the body of a young man from the waters off Manhattan’s northern tip — and cops suspect it was that of Clementi, a quiet, highly talented violinist from Ridgewood, NJ.

Authorities hoped that a watch found on his wrist would help identify him. Last night, NYPD detectives visited the teen’s parents, who were apparently unaware that their son was gay.

Robert Righthand, who had been friends with Clementi since grade school, said his pal had been holding that in.

“I can tell you that whatever state he was in, he had it in reserve for a very long time,” Righthand said while choking back tears.

“You never thought he was depressed. You just thought he was quiet. He wasn’t the person to open up to a lot of people.”

The tragedy was set in motion on Sept. 19 in Davidson Hall on Rutgers’ idyllic Piscataway campus, where Clementi and his alleged tormentors, Ravi and Wei, started school a month ago…

[continues in the New York Post]

, , , , ,

  • samthor

    To all the “decent, normal” people out there; this is the harvest of what you have sown.
    You declare Gay people to be second-class rejects.
    They’re not allowed to marry, to serve their country, to give blood, or in some places to adopt children.
    They’re diseased, and everyone, even our president, agrees.
    That’s why “good christians” like those in the Family Research Council, oppose anti-bullying laws that would curtail the ability of their sons and daughters to abuse people perceived as different.
    That’s why the senate opposed the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” And that’s why our president works so hard on behalf of true citizens by defending anti-gay laws in court and by ensuring that everyone knows of his opposition to same-sex marriage….
    because you believe we are less than human, a disease needing to be cured.
    This is what you get…. 4 suicides in a week.

  • Anonymous

    To all the “decent, normal” people out there; this is the harvest of what you have sown.
    You declare Gay people to be second-class rejects.
    They’re not allowed to marry, to serve their country, to give blood, or in some places to adopt children.
    They’re diseased, and everyone, even our president, agrees.
    That’s why “good christians” like those in the Family Research Council, oppose anti-bullying laws that would curtail the ability of their sons and daughters to abuse people perceived as different.
    That’s why the senate opposed the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” And that’s why our president works so hard on behalf of true citizens by defending anti-gay laws in court and by ensuring that everyone knows of his opposition to same-sex marriage….
    because you believe we are less than human, a disease needing to be cured.
    This is what you get…. 4 suicides in a week.

  • Wake_Up

    I’ve been seeing a lot of this “cyber bully” shit lately. I’m sorry, but I have a few gay friends that wouldn’t kill themselves because of a video or ANYTHING said to them by ANYONE… Modern garbageculture makes people think that they MUST behave in a certain manner to “fit in”. Who cares what someone says or does, why would you kill yourself? This is what humanity has come to…. Scared coward kids killing themselves instead of saying “Fuck what you think, I’ll live however the fuck I want”. And bet me that they won’t use this as another reason for “cybersecurity”. Gahhhhhh!!!!! Everyone needs to quit buying into this SHIT.

  • Wake_Up

    I’ve been seeing a lot of this “cyber bully” shit lately. I’m sorry, but I have a few gay friends that wouldn’t kill themselves because of a video or ANYTHING said to them by ANYONE… Modern garbageculture makes people think that they MUST behave in a certain manner to “fit in”. Who cares what someone says or does, why would you kill yourself? This is what humanity has come to…. Scared coward kids killing themselves instead of saying “Fuck what you think, I’ll live however the fuck I want”. And bet me that they won’t use this as another reason for “cybersecurity”. Gahhhhhh!!!!! Everyone needs to quit buying into this SHIT.

  • mole_face

    I feel for this kid. Thank fuck that camera phones weren’t omnipresent yet when I was in my late teens and early twenties – I’ve had some humiliating shit pulled on me by groups of bullies over the years, and probably would have reacted similarly if any of it had been recorded and posted online. Today’s young nerds/outsiders should always keep in mind that the vast majority of their peers are imhuman filth. Stay on your toes.

  • fuzzgun

    I feel for this kid. Thank fuck that camera phones weren’t omnipresent yet when I was in my late teens and early twenties – I’ve had some humiliating shit pulled on me by groups of bullies over the years, and probably would have reacted similarly if any of it had been recorded and posted online. Today’s young nerds/outsiders should always keep in mind that the vast majority of their peers are imhuman filth. Stay on your toes.

  • par1ah

    I don’t get why people want “mob justice” this is more a commentary on America’s fucked up social taboo’s regarding sex and sexuality. The fact that because the young man was gay, was reason enough to kill himself out of humiliation seems ridiculous. That is not to say his feelings were misplaced, but rather that society has created conditions where that kind of event is not a harmless prank, but rather a scarring, traumatic life event, that one could feel there is no reconciliation from.

    I also, from reading the NYT comments wonder would this even be news if he was not gay, if it was a straight male having sex with a girl or masturbating.. and then killed himself … I think then the blame would be on the victim, that he was disturbed, or clinically depressed etc… It would shift from the roomates. A large double standard.

    If anything, the social conditions of moral america should be questioned here, as this type of thing happens all the time in this day and age. Do you really believe you have total privacy in the age of facebook, shared dorm rooms and college. I highly doubt it.

  • par1ah

    I don’t get why people want “mob justice” this is more a commentary on America’s fucked up social taboo’s regarding sex and sexuality. The fact that because the young man was gay, was reason enough to kill himself out of humiliation seems ridiculous. That is not to say his feelings were misplaced, but rather that society has created conditions where that kind of event is not a harmless prank, but rather a scarring, traumatic life event, that one could feel there is no reconciliation from.

    I also, from reading the NYT comments wonder would this even be news if he was not gay, if it was a straight male having sex with a girl or masturbating.. and then killed himself … I think then the blame would be on the victim, that he was disturbed, or clinically depressed etc… It would shift from the roomates. A large double standard.

    If anything, the social conditions of moral america should be questioned here, as this type of thing happens all the time in this day and age. Do you really believe you have total privacy in the age of facebook, shared dorm rooms and college. I highly doubt it.