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An ongoing discussion about conservatism in New Jersey.
Forgotten Victims
James D. Agresti  (October 1, 2010, 11:37 am)

I echo Peter Hansen’s wise and insightful sentiments and also express my sincere condolences to the family and friends of Tyler. It is heartbreaking to see this talented young man’s life cut short, and I pray this sad incident serves as a wake-up call to all of us about the importance of kindness and decency.

Yet, something struck me about the wall-to-wall coverage of this tragedy. I remembered recently reading about several analogous incidents that did not receive nearly as much attention, which include:

• 18-year-old Jesse Logan, who committed suicide after a nude picture of her was passed around her school, and students began to taunt her with sexual epithets

Denise Simon, who committed suicide after a team of armed IRS agents raided her home while her 10-year-old daughter was present

• 22-year-old Jesse Kilgore, who committed suicide after his Christian faith was shattered allegedly through a professor and fellow students

While Tyler’s suicide made the front page of the New York Times, I found no mention of these other shocking tragedies in the Times’ search engine. Why does one suicide warrant front page coverage while similar others are neglected? Is Tyler’s death more significant than the deaths of Denise, Jesse, and Jesse? Were the people who catalyzed these events nationally vilified by the media? The sad reality is that because Tyler’s suicide was precipitated by the exposé of a homosexual encounter, the press and activists will use him as a prop to further their agenda. Regrettably, in the eyes of the some, certain victims just don’t register.