Teen Suicide, The LGBT Community, And The Church

Recently, I wrote a paper about adolescent suicide as an assignment for a counseling class. While researching this topic, I came across some startling statistics that I feel like I need to share. First, did you know that suicide is the tenth leading cause of death in the United States?[1] In adolescents (15-24), suicide is the third leading cause of death[2]! That means that, after accidents and murder, suicide kills more of our young people than any other factor.[2] This blows my mind! Still crazier, this rate skyrockets for adolescents in the LGBT community, with suicide being the number one cause of death.[3] In fact, LGBT youths are “two or three times more likely to commit suicide” than there straight peers, typically as a result of “the debilitating effects of growing up in a homophobic society”.[3]  Some research suggests that upwards of 50% of LGBT adolescents attempt suicide.[4] I think it obviously points to a larger societal issue when nearly half of any one demographic attempts suicide.  Continue reading

The World in Black and White?

If you’ve been following the news at all recently, you’re probably aware of the George Zimmerman trial that is taking place in Florida right now. Understand that I’m not writing to assert what I believe happened that night in February, 2012. I honestly don’t know what happened. And, I can’t pretend that I do. But, following the trial and tracking the public’s reaction has really got me thinking about the state of our society as it relates to race and racial identity. Continue reading