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Teen gay suicides shock the US

We think we're living in the 21st century but it takes events like these to show that we're far from living in a world of equality. The recent reports that five young American teenagers have committed suicide over taunts, bullying and in one case, an enfringement of privacy over their sexuality, have stunned American and British audiences alike.

The latest suicide in September was Raymond Chase, a 19-year-old studying at Johnson and Wales University, Rhode Island, the Pinknews tells us. Like 13-year-old Asher Brown, from Houston, Texas, fifteen-year-old Billy Lucas, of Indiana, and 13-year-old, Seth Walsh from Minnesota, he had been on the receiving end of bullying and taunts for simply being gay. One student from New Jersey, Tyler Clementi, apparently tried to ask for help after discovering two fellow students had rigged his room with a camera and filmed him having sex with a man.

'The deaths have shocked America and lesbian chatshow host Ellen DeGeneres implored the country to take action and prevent further deaths. Speaking on her daytime show yesterday, the presenter said: 'Something must be done. This needs to be a wake up call to everyone that teenage bullying and teasing is an epidemic in this country, and the death rate is climbing. We have an obligation to change this.'

At at time when US rappers like Fifty Cent are advocating that gay men should kill themselves if they choose not to sleep with women, it seems, once again, that young gay men are finding themselves very much without support of any kind.

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