Clinton to gay youth: “hang in there”
Hillary Clinton has joined a growing list of celebrities and politicians reaching out to gay, lesbian and transgender youth following a rash of suicides prompted by bullying.
“I have a message for all the young people out there who are being bullied, or who feel alone and find it hard to imagine a better future: First of all, hang in there and ask for help,” Clinton said in a video message available on YouTube.
“So take heart, and have hope, and please remember that your life is valuable, and that you are not alone. Many people are standing with you and sending you their thoughts, their prayers and their strength. Count me among them.”
Clinton’s message is part of a growing “It Gets Better” project which has seen thousands of people post their own video testimonials aimed at gay youth, hoping to persuade them that it is possible to live full, healthy, happy lives.
As a presidential candidate, Clinton opposed same-sex marriage but did support civil partnerships for gay and lesbian Americans.
Since becoming secretary of state, however, she has taken a stronger role as a gay rights advocate. In a speech to State Department gay and lesbian employees in June she noted that during her husband’s administration she had been the first U.S. first lady ever to march in a gay pride parade, and in 2009 she oversaw the extension of equal benefits to same sex partners of State Department employees.
PHOTO CREDIT REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque (Clinton smiles during appearance in Washington on Aug 16, 2010)