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Gay Teen Jumps to Suspended Teacher's Defense

In viral video, Graeme Taylor cites suicide attempt at age 9
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 15, 2010 11:12 AM CST
Gay Teen Jumps to Suspended Teacher's Defense
   (Detroit Free Press)

(Newser) – Video of a 14-year-old student’s incredibly eloquent defense of a suspended Michigan teacher is making waves on the web, the Detroit Free Press reports. The clip shows Graeme Taylor speaking at a school board meeting about his experience as a 9-year-old driven to a suicide attempt by bullying. Taylor spoke in defense of Jay McDowell, who was suspended for a day without pay after he asked two students to leave his classroom at Howell High School; one was wearing a Confederate flag belt buckle, the other was making anti-gay comments, notes New York magazine.

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Howell has ties to the Ku Klux Klan, Taylor notes, "And you probably want to get rid of that, so how would you like more headlines of 'Howell Denies Gays'?" He asked that the decision be reversed and McDowell's pay given to him, and continued, "This teacher finally stood up and said something. He did an amazing thing." “If you only watch one video today this should be it,” noted the anti-bullying It Gets Better Project. Click here to watch.
(Read more viral video stories.)

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