Recntly there was a news in our regional newspaper about Leelah (
Josh) Alcorn (17), a transgender teen who committed suicide on Dec 28, 2014 in Ohio. 'She' walked 4 miles to Interstate 71 in the middle of the night where she was struck and killed by a tractor-trailer. For two-three days internet talked only(so it seemed) about Leelah..I could see different pictures and news from different sites presenting their views and opinions and there was so much hatred towards the family particularly the parents who failed to understand their child. I was deeply affected by the incident ( like may other incidents... sometimes I just skip those pages or channels as if that would help me! Yet, the truth remains....we just can't escape from such facts!) just by the thought of how a teenager who pondered (must have done that for a long time) and took the drastic step of taking one's own life...put an end to all 'her' sufferings. She had explained in her blog that she felt "like a girl trapped in a boy's body ever since I was 4."
Why am I writing about her? I am not sure, but this is compelling! I had to! For me it is as simple as they are HUMANS too...with the same kind of feelings and emotions and pains! How hard can it be to accept people as they are when it is not even something within their power??? Many, I hear and read, take it as some sort of mental ailment. Isn't that sick and pathetic?
I think in these recent years much has been talked, discussed, presented and publicized through TV and other mediums. Earlier there was so much of...is it ambivalence(?)...when LGBT issues were spoken about. It's not completely extinct yet people are now more considerate, candid and accepting (than in the past when people would never come out speaking 'for' them) - can not generalize the situation though. I am glad that we are evolving though (may be I still like to see the positive side).
I remember Aamir Khan's Satyamev Jayate presented this issue in Season3 - Episode 3 - Accepting Alternative Sexualities. He needs all the applause for having brought up the issue in such a stoic fashion and made the country aware of the impact the society forces on them and how the lives, knowingly or unknowingly - most of the time it is the former, are transformed for the worse. There is so much stigma and taboo attached to the subject that one needs to think many times before venturing into it, I feel!
I loved Ghazal's part where she just had to be released from her disconnected body to what she actually was and most importantly how her parents stood by her even if it was with all their fears and insecurities. She is more graceful than any other 'woman' I have seen! To top it all, she's an upcoming script-writer too!!!
I felt Leelah's story resembled Ghazal's but it ended up tragically because she didn't have the much needed support system as Ghazal. Leelah's case became global, specifically after her 'Suicide Note' went viral and it was followed by 'SORRY' (to friends and family).
Leelah's mission was clear...she didn't want her death to go unnoticed...she wanted to bring about a change. She said "My death needs to mean something"...she wished to "Fix society" and she left all the money she was to inherit and what she had for the cause - to save LGBT community. It shows the 'grave' impact on her 'little' mind.
This alone can be a reason why one should not talk about her? It is this attitude that made me write this post...she takes it to the level of sacrifice by doing so.
I would like to hear what you wish to say...your thoughts on the subject.
Leelah - Watercolor on handmade paper
"Leelah, the light was
put out to darken her thoughts
yet it caught flame, wild."
Linking to Eva and Kristin's Paint Party Friday!