Showing posts with label Kids. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Kids. Show all posts

April 25, 2019

3 Yr Old Migrant Boy Found Crying Alone on The US Border

 A three-year-old migrant boy was found in tears as he wandered alone in a Texas cornfield near the US-Mexico border, officials say. 
Migrant boy at border stationUS Border Patrol agents discovered the boy in the Rio Grande Valley near Brownsville, Texas on Tuesday morning.
His name and phone number were written on his shoes, according to officials.
"We believe the boy was with a larger group that ran when they encountered agents," the US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) tweeted.
He was taken to Fort Brown border station, where he was supervised by agents while efforts were made to find his family, officials say. 
Border agents say they were unable to locate his relatives and he "does not speak well enough" to tell them who they are.
He has been taken to a processing facility in Texas, where he remains under the care of child workers.
In a statement, CBP told the BBC the boy was "abandoned by smugglers" who "entered the United States illegally".
Startled by border agents attempting to intercept them, the group fled, leaving the boy on his own in an overgrown field, the agency says. 
Border agent carries boy
A US Border Patrol agent carries the three-year-old boy in his arms
"Agents requested the assistance of a Border Patrol K-9 team in an attempt to search the field and, in the process, they located a child who was alone and crying," the statement says. 
He underwent a medical examination at a local hospital and was found to be in a "good condition" with no injuries. 
Until his family makes contact, the US Department of Health and Human Services will take custody of him, CBP says.
Migrant boy's shoesThe discovery of the boy comes as US Border Patrol agents attempt to grapple with the rising number of families trying to reach the US from Central America.
  The boy's name and a phone number were written on his shoes
On Monday, Mexico detained nearly 400 Central American migrants who were traveling towards the US border, according to officials.
The migrants, said to be part of a 3,000-strong caravan, were arrested during a raid in Chiapas state.
US President Donald Trump said the remainder "must be apprehended" and threatened to close a section of the border if they were not. 
What are the latest migration figures?
In total, 207,475 people have been apprehended on the south-west US border between January and the end of March this year, official US Border Patrol figures show
Of that total, 53,077 of them were families and 8,975 were unaccompanied children in March, the agency says. 
The total number of apprehensions rose sharply between February and March, from 66,884 to 92,607, according to the latest figures. 
In March, CBP said encounters of family units and unaccompanied children along the southwest border rose to numbers not seen since 2014. 
"We are currently experiencing a system-wide emergency in our processing and holding facilities," CBP deputy commissioner, Robert Perez, said in a statement. 
Trump speaking at a rally"The humanitarian crisis created by a massive influx of family groups and unaccompanied children in recent months has forced CBP to reallocate resources away from law enforcement, trade and travel missions to process and provide care for those in our custody."                               Trump threatened to close the US-Mexico border

How is Trump dealing with it?

Mr Trump has taken a hard line on migration across the US-Mexico border since taking office in 2017. 
Building a "big, beautiful" wall to stop the flow of migrants was one of his main 2016 presidential campaign pledges, blaming Mexico for "bringing drugs, bringing crime, their rapists".
His plans reached an impasse last year after Congress refused to give Mr Trump the $5.7bn (£4.5bn) he wanted to build the wall, leading to a government shutdown. 
But in February, Mr Trump managed to circumvent Congress by declaring a national emergency, allowing him to reroute funds from the military to the wall.
As president, Mr Trump has repeatedly threatened to shut down the border if Mexico does not do more to stop undocumented migrants making the crossing.
This Page is from BBC

February 28, 2019

Thousand of Sexual Abuse Allegations Against Unaccompanied Minors in US Custody

                                Related image

Thousands of allegations of sexual abuse against unaccompanied minors (UAC) in the custody of the U.S. government have been reported over the past 4 years, according to Department of Health and Human Services documents given to Axios by Rep. Ted Deutch's office.

Data: Dept. of Health and Human Services; Note: The type of perpetrator is only known for cases ORR reported to DOJ; Chart: Harry Stevens/Axios
Allegations against staff members reported to the DOJ included everything from rumors of relationships with UACs to showing pornographic videos to minors to forcibly touching minors’ genitals.

By the numbers: From October 2014 to July 2018, the HHS' Office of Refugee Resettlement received 4,556 complaints, and the Department of Justice received 1,303 complaints. This includes 178 allegations of sexual abuse by adult staff.

What they're saying: Deutch said these documents were included in HHS' response to a House Judiciary Committee request for information made in January.

"This behavior — it's despicable, it's disgusting, and this is just the start of questions that HHS is going to have to answer about how they handle these and what's happening in these facilities," Deutch told Axios.
HHS' response, per spokeswoman Caitlin Oakley:

“The safety of minors is our top concern when administering our unaccompanied alien children program. Each of our grantees running standard shelters is licensed by the respective state for child care services. In addition to other rigorous standards put in place by the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) at HHS' Administration for Children and Families, background checks of all facility employees are mandatory."
“These are vulnerable children in difficult circumstances, and ORR fully understands its responsibility to ensure that each child is treated with the utmost care. When any allegations of abuse, sexual abuse, or neglect are made, they are taken seriously and ORR acts swiftly to investigate and respond."
Details: One of the documents given to Axios, embedded below, gives some detail about the allegations, although it only includes descriptions of the incidences for fiscal years 2015 and 2016. We also don't know what happened to the accused staffers in fiscal years 2017 and 2018.

Based on the information provided in the documents, it's unclear whether there's overlap between allegations reported to ORR and those made to DOJ. Axios assumed that some ORR allegations are referred to DOJ, so the numbers included in our chart are conservative.

All allegations referred to DOJ are also referred to HHS, according to the documents.
In many cases, the staff members were removed from duty and ultimately fired.

January 28, 2018

32 Months for Sexually Abusing 4 yr Old (Mistakenly) For An 18 Yr Old

 The reason I Am including the short story that appeared on BBC (UK) is that I was appalled that a man assaulting a 4-year-old gets 3 years in jail. I imagine what he would get in most states in the US and this is another criminal system but still, the UK is a Western civilized country which I believe would be abhorred for such actions. Whether the guy was drunk or very drunk. He shows a few bruises on his face and I can imagine how he is got them and maybe there will be justice among criminals but that is not the justice a civilized country should depend or allowed. Instead, sexually abusing a four-year-old goes there right under murder one. adamfoxie
Conrad Pritchard
Conrad Pritchard has been jailed for 32 months

BBC Published:
A man who sexually assaulted a four-year-old girl and claimed he thought she was 18 has been jailed.
Conrad Pritchard, 22, attacked the child at a house in Salford after drinking in a pub. 
Pritchard denied sexual assault at Manchester Crown Court but was convicted and sentenced to 32 months.
Det Con Paul Davies, of Greater Manchester Police, said Pritchard, of Isaac Close, Salford, targeted the girl to "satisfy his appalling urges".
Pritchard had been out drinking with three others on 25 June before heading to the home of one of the group members.
He went upstairs and the child's mother heard her daughter crying in distress. She found Pritchard lying beside the girl, naked from the waist down.
Police said he fled and on his arrest, told officers he thought she was the 18-year-old babysitter.
DC Davies said Pritchard's attempt "to justify what happened by claiming that he thought a four-year-old girl was actually 18 is absurd."

November 8, 2017

Kevin Spacey's Career of Closeted Sexual Abuse, It's as Long As Years in Hollywood

He Flew With Bill Clinton on 'Lolita Express' Kevin Spacey Started Group to Groom Child Stars

As sexual harassment and assault allegations against a number of powerful men continue to ricochet around Hollywood (as well as other industries), perhaps the most familiar name on the list of men accused of sexual assault is that of Kevin Spacey, a two-time Oscar winner, decorated Broadway and theater vet, and the (now former) star of Netflix’s House of Cards.

Since October 29, when BuzzFeed published allegations made by actor Anthony Rapp that Spacey made a sexual advance toward Rapp when Rapp was 14, at least eight more men have come forward with their own allegations against Spacey, with accounts ranging from harassment to attempted rape.

The allegations have brought about a flood of damage control from Hollywood companies seeking to distance themselves from the actor. Netflix, Spacey’s agent, his publicist, and the industry at large have all backed away from him.

Here’s what we know so far about the allegations that have surfaced against Spacey, and the fallout that’s ensued.

Anthony Rapp accused Spacey of assaulting him when Rapp was 14. Spacey deflected by coming out as gay.
Rapp is a veteran Broadway actor best known for originating the role of Mark in Rent; he’s currently playing Star Trek’s first openly gay character on the CBS All Access series Star Trek: Discovery. He told BuzzFeed that Spacey befriended him in 1986, when Rapp was 14 years old and performing in the Broadway play Precious Sons. According to Rapp, Spacey made “a sexual advance” toward him while he was attending a party at Spacey’s home.

After his claims went public on October 29, Rapp stated on Twitter that he was coming forward in solidarity with the dozens of women who’ve made allegations against Harvey Weinstein, as well as other assault survivors, “standing on the shoulders of the many courageous women and men who have been speaking out to shine a light and hopefully make a difference.”

Spacey responded to Rapp’s allegations by issuing a statement on Twitter in which he said he owed Rapp “the sincerest apology for what would have been deeply inappropriate drunken behavior.” Spacey then added, “This story has encouraged me to address other things about my life. I know that there are stories out there about me and that some have been fueled by the fact I have been so protective of my privacy. ... I choose now to live as a gay man. I want to deal with this honestly and openly and that starts with examining my own behavior.”

The statement marked the first time Spacey had ever officially publicly confirmed his sexuality, which is usually something to celebrate. But many people interpreted his statement and his choice to come out in response to Rapp’s allegations as an attempt to distract from the seriousness of the charge that he had preyed on an underage target. Backlash was swift, as Spacey’s move was widely rejected and criticized, with some observers decrying the way it helped fuel a damaging myth that conflates queer male identity with pedophilia.

And in the days that followed, several other accusers came forward to make their own allegations against Spacey, challenging his implication that his behavior was an isolated incident of irresponsible drunkenness.

Several more accusers have come forward against Spacey with allegations that span decades. Here’s a rundown.
Since Rapp came forward, numerous other allegations against Spacey have surfaced. Including Rapp, at least eight men have made specific claims against the actor. Many of Spacey’s accusers describe a pattern of alleged behavior from him that, like Weinstein, involved using the lure of his success and the opportunity of career mentorship to put himself into a position where he could then prey on young men.

Here are the allegations we know so far.

1983–1984: anonymous 14-year-old boy
An anonymous man told New York magazine that in 1983, when he was 14 and Spacey was 24, he began a sexual relationship with Spacey that allegedly culminated in Spacey attempting to rape him.

The anonymous actor stated that his relationship with Spacey lasted about a year, during which time he became aware that “25-year-olds don’t have sex with 14- and 15-year-olds, that that’s wrong, that I was not the guilty party and I could leave.” He told New York that the relationship ended when he was 15, after Spacey allegedly attempted to rape him.

“Mr. Spacey absolutely denies the allegations,” a representative for Spacey told the magazine.

1985: anonymous 17-year-old boy
The BBC reported on November 1 that Spacey allegedly approached an anonymous 17-year-old boy in 1985, befriending the teen and then ultimately inviting him to visit his home, where Spacey progressed from being “charming and brotherly” to sexually inappropriate. After rejecting Spacey’s initial advances, the accuser says he woke up to find “Spacey's head on his stomach and his arms wrapped around him.” The anonymous source described Spacey to the BBC as “either very stupid or predatory or ... both,” and noted that Spacey had not been drunk during their encounter.

"It seems he was grooming me," the anonymous source told the BBC.

1988: Justin Dawes
A man named Justin Dawes told Buzzfeed that he met a 29-year-old Spacey through a Connecticut theater when he was 16 years old and a junior in high school. Spacey allegedly invited Dawes and a friend to hang out at his apartment, where he served them cocktails and played gay porn. According to Buzzfeed, even though nothing else happened, “at the time, the 16-year-old felt like he ‘should've realized’ that Spacey wanted him to come over for reasons related to sex.”

“He knew that I was in high school,” Dawes told Buzzfeed. “It was pretty clear.”

1995: Mark Ebenhoch
Mark Ebenhoch told Buzzfeed that he had been working as a military adviser on the set of Outbreak, in which Spacey played a supporting role, when one of Spacey’s on-set assistants propositioned him on Spacey’s behalf.

“They asked flat out to engage in a sexual act,” Ebenhoch alleged. “It was enough to stun me. It blew me away.” Ebenhoch told Buzzfeed that he rejected the invitation and avoided Spacey for the duration of the production.

2003: director Tony Montana
Director Tony Montana was the second person to publicly come forward with an allegation against Spacey. On October 31, he told gossip website Radar Online that Spacey physically assaulted him in 2003, when Montana was in his 30s. Montana alleges that Spacey approached him in a bar, groped him, and said, “this designates ownership” as he did so. “I had PTSD for six months after” the incident, Montana said.

Dates unspecified: actor Robert Cavazos
Mexican actor Robert Cavazos discussed past encounters with Spacey in a Facebook post (written in Spanish) on November 1. Cavazos says he met Spacey through the Old Vic Theatre in London, where Spacey was the artistic director from 2004 to 2015. Cavazos alleges that Spacey touched him inappropriately numerous times, and said that Spacey would frequently grope men while hanging out at the Old Vic’s bar.

“It appears that all that was needed was a male under the age of 30 for Mr. Spacey to feel free to touch us,” Cavazos wrote. “It was so common that it turned into a local joke (in very bad taste)."

Date unspecified: anonymous journalist
An anonymous journalist gave a detailed account to Buzzfeed of an incident that occurred in London during the early 2000s, when the journalist was in his early 20s. The journalist was assigned to interview Spacey at his office at the Old Vic; after the interview, Spacey allegedly invited the journalist to hang out with him and some friends at a club, where he allegedly groped the journalist “aggressively” despite repeated attempts to get him to stop. When the journalist told Spacey he was in a committed relationship with a woman, it seemed to make no difference; when he tried to leave, Spacey implored him to stay. "He had somehow convinced himself that this was a sexual liaison that we both wanted,” the journalist told Buzzfeed.

Finally, the journalist alleged, Spacey tried to prevent him from leaving.

"[Spacey] was screaming in my face outside of the main bar area, red-faced, spit flying out of his mouth, screaming at me with fury because I didn't want to fuck him. He was actually saying that I did want to and I was a coward. That was his tactic. It was unbelievable."
The journalist said he reported the incident to his editor, who confirmed as much to Buzzfeed, and the story ultimately ran without a byline. The journalist told Buzzfeed that a major concern that prevented him from going public with the incident was his fear of outing Spacey as gay. “Being closeted has for him enabled him to use this privacy claim as a shield against anybody looking closely at his actual behavior,” he said.

2008: actor Harry Dreyfuss
In a piece he wrote for Buzzfeed, actor Harry Dreyfuss alleged that Spacey groped him when he was 18 years old, recalling an incident that took place while he was helping his father, the actor Richard Dreyfuss, rehearse for a play at Spacey’s London apartment.

In a very detailed account, Dreyfuss describes how Spacey touched him inappropriately throughout the rehearsal, and describes his own failed attempts to stop Spacey from fondling him without disrupting the rehearsal or alerting his father. Thinking back to what was going through his head at the time, Dreyfuss writes:

Looking into his eyes, I gave the most meager shake of my head that I could manage. I was trying to warn him without alerting my dad, who still had his eyes glued to the page. I thought I was protecting everyone. I was protecting my dad’s career. I was protecting Kevin, who my dad surely would have tried to punch. I was protecting myself, because I thought one day I’d want to work with this man. Kevin had no reaction and kept his hand there. My eyes went back to the script and I kept reading.
“In retrospect, what disgusts me about Kevin was how safe he did feel,” Dreyfuss concluded. “He knew he could fondle me in a room with my father and that I wouldn’t say a word.”

2008: anonymous 23-year-old man
According to Variety, Scotland Yard is investigating a claim that a man who is believed to be Spacey assaulted a 23-year-old bartender in London in 2008. “On 1 November, City of London police referred an allegation of sexual assault to the Metropolitan police service,” a Scotland Yard spokesperson said in a press statement released November 3. “It is alleged a man assaulted another man in 2008 in Lambeth. Officers from the child abuse and sexual offences command are investigating.”

Though Scotland Yard has not named Spacey as the alleged perpetrator, Variety notes that the incident being investigated took place in the South London neighborhood of Lambeth, where Spacey maintains a home. The details, which were first reported by the British tabloid the Sun, allegedly involve the victim approaching Spacey to ask for help with his career, passing out after smoking weed at Spacey’s apartment, and waking up to find Spacey performing oral sex on him. The man, who is now 32, is said to have reported the incident to police this week, after other allegations against Spacey became public.

2010: Daniel Beal
A British bartender named Daniel Beal told the Sun that Spacey flashed his genitals at him in 2010, while Beal was working at a bar in West Sussex. Beal, then 19, photographed himself at the time wearing an expensive watch, which was allegedly given to him by Spacey shortly after the incident, apparently to buy his silence.

2013: anonymous actor at the Old Vic
Buzzfeed reports that an anonymous actor recently contacted the Old Vic to report that Spacey “repeatedly sexually assaulted him in a public place in 2013.” No further detail has been reported, but the actor told Buzzfeed that Spacey treated the theater “like a playground.”

2012 to 2017: multiple anonymous cast and crew members on the set of Netflix’s House of Cards
On November 2, CNN reported that multiple cast and crew members working on the House of Cards set allege that Spacey engaged in harassment and created a toxic environment during the production. A total of eight sources told CNN that Spacey’s behavior was “predatory,” or that he harassed or initiated nonconsensual physical contact with production crew or had targeted young men. One anonymous crew member said Spacey routinely touched him inappropriately throughout the six seasons he worked on set, and that he did not "feel comfortable" asking Spacey to stop.

Additionally, a former House of Cards production assistant who reported Spacey’s behavior to a supervisor told CNN that a supervisor resolved the problem by attempting to make sure Spacey and the assistant were segregated while on set. Months after the implementation of this practice, Spacey allegedly sexually assaulted the production assistant while they were driving in a car together. The crew member did not report the assault.

Netflix and the Old Vic Theatre have responded to the allegations against Spacey by distancing themselves from the actor
Many current and former employers and associates of Spacey’s have been quick to denounce the allegations made against actor, and to attempt to distance themselves from reports of his alleged behavior.

One day after BuzzFeed published Rapp’s allegations against Spacey, the Hollywood Reporter confirmed that House of Cards will end with its sixth season, noting that “official word on its conclusion, which has been in the works since the summer, comes at a problematic time for Spacey.”

Netflix, along with House of Cards production studio Media Rights Capital, later suspended production on the show entirely. “MRC and Netflix have decided to suspend production on House of Cards season six until further notice,” read a joint press statement, “to give us time to review the current situation and to address any concerns of our cast and crew.”

MRC has claimed to have no knowledge of outstanding or unresolved complaints made against Spacey. In a statement to CNN, the company claimed to have handled any incidents brought to its attention:

[D]uring our first year of production in 2012, someone on the crew shared a complaint about a specific remark and gesture made by Kevin Spacey. Immediate action was taken following our review of the situation and we are confident the issue was resolved promptly to the satisfaction of all involved. Mr. Spacey willingly participated in a training process and since that time MRC has not been made aware of any other complaints involving Mr. Spacey.
Netflix told CNN that “Netflix was just made aware of one incident, five years ago, that we were informed was resolved swiftly,” but that it was “not aware of any other incidents involving Kevin Spacey on-set.” Netflix stated it was committed to “maintain[ing] a safe and respectful working environment,” while MRC announced that it had established “an anonymous complaint hotline, crisis counselors, and sexual harassment legal advisors for the crew.”

However, since the CNN report, multiple anonymous House of Cards crew members have alleged to Buzzfeed that Spacey’s behavior was widely known on set, with many people, including series creator Beau Willimon, knowingly turning a blind eye to a pattern of harassment. One source told Buzzfeed that the production team treated Spacey’s “flirtatious behavior toward crew and cast ... like a joke,” adding, “He touches and feels anyone he wants to.” Willimon has denied all knowledge of Spacey’s behavior, including the on-set incident reported by CNN. The source Buzzfeed spoke with called Willimon’s claim “100% bullshit.”

Meanwhile, since the news concerning Spacey has surfaced, the Old Vic has battled accusations that staff members of the theater knew about the actor’s alleged longstanding pattern of harassment and predatory behavior, but did nothing to stop it.

According to the Guardian, multiple Old Vic employees witnessed Spacey behaving inappropriately at the theater company during his tenure as artistic director, quoting one anonymous former staffer who said, “We were all involved in keeping it quiet. I witnessed him groping men many times in all sorts of different situations.”

In a statement to the press, the theater said, “The Old Vic is not currently in a position to comment on specifics of what may have taken place in the past,” and encouraged anyone with information or concerns about Spacey to email the theater at However, one actor who recently submitted a complaint to the theater has alleged that it was handled inappropriately.

The consequences Spacey is facing so far have been wide-ranging and immediate
Since Rapp’s allegations against Spacey became public, Spacey has suffered the following career setbacks:

Netflix suspended production of House of Cards, and Variety reported on November 3 that House of Cards producers were considering killing off Spacey’s character, Frank Underwood, for the show’s final season. Netflix later released a statement declaring, “Netflix will not be involved with any further production of House of Cards that includes Kevin Spacey. We will continue to work with MRC during this hiatus time to evaluate our path forward as it relates to the show.” Netflix has additionally scrapped the release of Gore, a planned 2018 Netflix movie with Spacey in the lead.
The International Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, which produces the annual International Emmy Awards (a global edition of the Emmys), rescinded its previously announced plans to honor Spacey with an International Emmy Founders Award, an honor given to “an individual who crosses cultural boundaries to touch humanity.”

Ridley Scott’s All the Money in the World, in which Spacey plays J. Paul Getty, is still scheduled for a 2017 holiday release, but production studio Tri-Star has scrapped what was to have been an aggressive marketing and awards season campaign built around Spacey’s performance.
The online learning program MasterClass removed from its catalog a five-hour online acting course created by Spacey.

Spacey’s representation at Hollywood’s prestigious Creative Artists Agency, as well as his publicist, Staci Wolfe, have reportedly dropped him from their client lists. This news came a week after CAA dropped Game Change author and political journalist Mark Halperin from its client list following sexual assault allegations against him.

Spacey’s representatives said in a brief statement released to the Hollywood Reporter on November 1 that Spacey “is taking the time necessary to seek evaluation and treatment.”

The fallout from the allegations against Spacey is in line with the ongoing ramifications of the scandal surrounding disgraced Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein, which kicked off in October after the New York Times and the New Yorker both published allegations made by several women against the megaproducer. Since then, continued reports of Weinstein’s alleged pattern of serial sexual abuse have sparked an industry-wide callout of sexual harassment and assault, which has in turn spread beyond Hollywood to other industries like the media and academia. To many, the wave of allegations has started to feel like a signal of a major cultural shift in how we think about systemic sexism and patterns of sexual assault, and in how we socially arbitrate the stories of survivors.

On some level, Rapp’s accusation against Spacey served as a litmus test to determine if such a cultural shift could impact the careers of A-list actors. Judging by the ramifications Spacey has experienced thus far, it seems as though many in Hollywood are attempting to send a clear message about how important it is to listen to victims and take claims of assault and harassment seriously. But Spacey isn’t the only alleged sexual predator in Hollywood, or the only one who’s led a successful career despite his behavior apparently being an open secret. Whether Hollywood will be willing to do the work of uprooting the powerful figures who abuse their influence, and make real changes to prevent more predation from occurring, is now the major question on everyone’s minds.

Originally reported at VOX

May 6, 2014

Kids of Gay Parents Tape a Video for You

Kids Of Gay Parents Speak Out In Heartwarming Video

In preparation for their movie ‘FREE’, Team Angelica spent an afternoon at the South Bank Centre filming “kids of gay , straight, bi and undefinable parents.”
And the most important lesson these kids taught us, is that Parents are Parents, Family is Family, and Love is Love!
Watch below:

May 2, 2014

Kids React to Gay marriage

This video is not new but still makes the point loud and clear. Kids as long as they have not been exposed to biased from parents, teachers, etc., can give you the most honest opinion about anything they see. Their opinion will be pure and unadulterated. There is a book in which many have been killed over it in which it says that “unless you could be like a child you could never enter the kingdom of god.”(St.James version 1962, the Bible)

November 4, 2013

Bi-Kid Gets Kicked Out of Home Gets $16K in Donations

When Nick’s parents discovered their teenage son was bisexual, they threw him out of the house, taking his car while he was at work, along with all of the money in his bank account, and threw his remaining belongings out of their home and onto the front lawn warning him to pick it up before it gets stolen.
Steve Bevers, whose mother-in-law works with Nick, not only took the Georgia teenager into their home, but also started a GoFundMe page for him on Oct. 22. In just 11 days, that fund has raised over $16,000 for the penniless 18-year-old Kennesaw State University freshman.
The description on the GoFundMe page states that the money in Nick’s bank accounts totaled a “significant sum,” and explained that Nick’s parents “used the fact that his bank accounts were “custodial accounts” to take all his funds, taking the considerable amount he had saved up over the past 3 years working as a bag boy at Publix.
Bevers explained in a statement on the GoFundMe page, “[Nick] has felt that the people most responsible for loving and protecting him through anything have turned their backs and don’t care where he’s sleeping, or how he’s going to feed himself.” He added, “We’re working to show Nick that he is loved, even by strangers. That the horrible acts of some people will not be enough to stop him, and that with the help of people everywhere, he can get through this.”
He has no home, no car, thus no way to get back and forth to his school, and no money. We have taken him in, and are committed to keeping him on track. But he will need to find a place to live soon (He is welcome on our couch as long as he needs, but everyone deserves a bed to call their own) and a car to help him get around. Had his parents not emptied his accounts, he could have paid a deposit, got into an apartment, and found a new car, but he was left with nothing.
Nick’s GoFundMe page had been flooded with messages of support for the disowned teen. In a video message to his supporters, Nick said, “You guys pretty much saved my life.” He added: “This whole thing started when my stepmom caught wind of me being bisexual,” he said. “I don’t know where she got her information from, but I know it wasn’t from me. She didn’t like that and neither did my dad. I got told some very vulgar and disgusting things… That’s why I didn’t tell them, because I wasn’t ready. And I didn’t tell them for the exact reaction I was scared about, and that’s exactly what happened.”
Watch Nick’s thank you video below:

The messages of support were just as incredible as the overwhelming generosity for the disowned teen.
Warren wrote on the GoFundMe page: “I don’t have enough money for rent, but I am going to figure out a way to donate some money. IT GETS BETTER! I was an “ally” in high school and in turn got almost as much crap as the homosexual kids. Please keep your head up. We all love you!
Timothy writes: “Nick, I was disowned by my father and was told by him that I should commit suicide when it was discovered I was gay. The reason I’m telling you this is to KEEP YOUR CHIN UP and to share my strength and hope that IT GETS BETTER! They do not deserve to be in your life. Your father and STEPMOTHER don’t know the meaning of the word love.
Jennifer writs: “My thoughts are with you. Don’t let the actions of you parents stop you from becoming an amazing person. You have the world (well, most of) supporting you and your dreams.

The Huffington Post reports that Nick will use the money to register for spring semester and hopes to put the remainder of it towards a new vehicle.

September 23, 2013

Gay People Don’t Shoot Kids?

"The mother of a man accused of being involved in the Wilkes-Barre apartment complex shooting that left two little girls critically wounded told reporters it wasn't possible that her son committed the crime because he's gay, and "gay people don't shoot kids."

"Certain men don't shoot kids," the unidentified mother continued.

Jevaun D. Brown, 24, and Taleek T. Sistrunk, 21, also of Wilkes-Barre, were arrested along with Trevor Whitaker, 26, of Brooklyn, on August 24th while fleeing the scene of the shooting at the Sherman Hills apartment complex."* The Young Turks hosts Cenk Uygur and Ana Kasparian break it down.

A gunman with a military-grade assault rifle opened fire on a pickup basketball game in the Back of the Yards neighborhood late Thursday, injuring 13 people and dragging the city back into the international spotlight for its violent crime problem.
At least 16 bullets were fired into Cornell Square Park around 10:15 p.m. on Thursday, wounding a 3-year-old boy and a dozen other people. All are expected to survive, many with wounds to their arms and legs.
Shell casings found around the blood-soaked basketball courts were 7.62 mm rounds, which are traditionally used in AK-47 assault rifles and rarely found in gang attacks on Chicago’s South Side. Though gun violence has long plagued the city’s impoverished neighborhoods, offenders almost never use military-style weapons.
“It's a miracle there has been no fatality,” Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy said at a news conference this morning. “Illegal guns, illegal guns, illegal guns drive violence....A military-grade weapon on the streets of Chicago is simply unacceptable.”
The park is in a heavily gang-infested area, but it is not in a so-called impact zone flooded by officers to deter crime, McCarthy said. The nearest zones are three blocks to the north and three blocks to the south, leaving the Cornell Square as a no man’s land protected only by occasional patrols and an 11 p.m. curfew.
About 45 minutes before the park’s closing time, at least one gunman walked to the basketball court in the 1800 block of West 51st Street and opened fire, police said. The 13 people hit included both the pick-up game’s players and spectators such as 3-year-old Deonta Howard.
Deonta, who was standing near the court, was shot near the ear and the bullet exited through his cheek, according to police and relatives. His family said the boy is expected to recover but will need plastic surgery.
After visiting Deonta at Mount Sinai Hospital Friday, his grandmother Semehca Nunn called for an end to the violence that has terrorized her historically working-class neighborhood in recent years.
“They need to stop, they need to stop,” Nunn said, before collapsing in tears.
Police believe the shooting stemmed from an ongoing dispute between the Black P. Stones and Gangster Disciples. It was not known if any of the victims were the intended targets, authorities said.
“There were members of gangs on the scene and there were gang members among the victims,” McCarthy said.
Authorities do not have anyone in custody and are currently reviewing police cameras mounted nearby. There could be as many as three offenders, officials said.
The first paramedics on scene found more than a dozen people lying across the rust-colored court. One person lay near a bicycle that was on its side. A pair of white gym shoes were left near an out-of-bounds line.
Ambulances continued to arrive a half hour after the shootings as wounded people – including a 15-year-old boy and a 17-year-old girl – were carried out on stretchers. About 60 police officers converged on the park and crime lab investigators combed the scene. Witnesses say Deonta was the first to be carried away.
The images again captured the world’s attention as international media organizations ran stories about the shooting and foreign reporters attended a Friday morning press conference at police headquarters.
McCarthy repeatedly refused to address the incident’s toll on the city’s reputation or his department’s effort to curb gun violence. “Every time somebody is shot in this city, it’s a setback,” McCarthy said. “But this is not just a Chicago problem.”
The incident appeared problematic enough for Mayor Rahm Emanuel to cancel a meeting with Obama administration cabinet secretaries today on city issues and return to Chicago, his spokeswoman Sarah Hamilton said.
Emanuel flew to D.C. Thursday to raise money for his campaign fund. His East Coast swing also was supposed to include a political fundraiser for Democratic New Jersey U.S. Senate candidate Cory Booker.
Upon his return, Emanuel spent 40 minutes at Mount Sinai Hospital, where he spoke with Deonta’s mother. The boy, who remains in critical condition, was sedated and being prepared for surgery during the visit.
The mayor did not speak with reporters, but released a statement asking the community to cooperate with the investigation.
“Senseless and brazen acts of violence have no place in Chicago and betray all that we stand for,” Emanuel said in a statement. “The perpetrators of this crime will be brought to justice and prosecuted to the full extent of the law. I encourage everyone in the community to step forward with any information and everyone in Chicago to continue their individual efforts to build stronger communities where violence has no place.”
Two family photos of Deonta' Howard, age 3, shot in an attack that wounded 13 people in a Back of the Yards park Thursday night. (Family photos)
The shootings came just days after the FBI released crime data showing that Chicago had more murders than New York in 2012. McCarthy argued Friday that the statistics were old news and did not represent the progress made in the city, where the murder rate has dropped by 20 percent over the past year.
Ald. Willie Cochran, a retired police sergeant whose redrawn ward will include Cornell Square in 2015, acknowledged the shootings landed a damaging blow against the city’s crime-fighting efforts.
“It’s a setback because we’ve been focusing so much attention on suppressing crime,” he said. “If you look at where we were last year and where we are this year, it shows that. But the perception of crime is greater than the crime itself. While law enforcement has been implementing programs, putting more officers on the street on overtime initiatives, it only takes one incident like this to change the whole perception of the reality.”
For neighborhood residents, the reality Thursday night included a burst of rapid fire and sight of a bleeding 3-year-old boy. Deonta’s older brother, Jamarrie Toney, was at his aunt’s home across the street from Cornell Square when he heard the shots. He ran to the park’s gate and saw his younger brother lying on the ground with a gunshot wound to the face.
Jamarrie, 9, had not seen Deonta – who goes by the nickname Tay Man – since paramedics rushed the little boy to the hospital. “I just miss him,” he said.
Another victim, a 37-year-old man who was shot in the leg, said he had been hanging around the park with friends when the gunfire began.
“I turned around, I heard screaming,’’ he said. “I saw Tay Man."
He paused.
“I just saw his face. Just tore off. . .they almost shot his whole face off,” he said.
The man, who asked that his name not be used, smoked a cigarette as he leaned on a cane after being released from the hospital. Medical tape held down a piece of cotton gauze on his left arm, and he was missing the shoe from the leg where he had also been shot.
He denied feeling anger toward the shooter. “I’m just grateful, grateful to be alive,” the man said.
Mayra Rodriguez, 23, who lives in the area with her 2-year-old daughter, heard rapid gunfire and then saw people on the ground. “Good thing most of them got hit in the legs,’’ she said.
“That kid was playing, he didn’t even know nothing, it was out of nowhere,’’ she said of the 3-year-old.
Relatives said the boy's uncle, Jerome Wood, was fatally shot in the Woodlawn neighborhood over the Labor Day weekend. The Rev. Corey Brooks, who presided over Wood's funeral, urged the shooter or shooters to surrender or face justice on the streets.
“There are people who know exactly who the shooter is,” he said. “And I'm sure he will not be safe shooting 13 people.”
As dawn broke today, broken glass could be seen strewn across the basketball court, along with discarded medical supplies, syringes without needles, plastic packaging, orange gloves and a bloody T-shirt.
Before Thursday night's shooting, eight children under the age of 8 had been shot in Chicago over seven weeks.
Police listed the victims as:
• A 3-year-old boy, shot in the ear, in critical condition at Mount Sinai
• A 17-year-old girl, shot in the foot, condition stabilized at Holy Cross Hospital
• A 15-year-old boy shot in the arm, stabilized at Holy Cross
• A man, 27, shot in the leg and wrist, serious condition at Mount Sinai
• A man, 24, shot twice in the stomach, serious condition at Mount Sinai
• A man, 21, shot in the leg, serious condition at Mount Sinai
• A man, 41, shot in the buttocks, serious condition at John H. Stroger Jr. Hospital
• A woman, 33, shot in the shoulder, condition stabilized at Northwestern Memorial Hospital
• A man, 31, shot in the buttocks, condition stabilized at Northwestern
• A woman, 23, shot in the foot, condition stabilized at St. Anthony Hospital
• A man, 37, shot in the leg, in good condition at Stroger
• A man, 25, shot in the knee, in good condition at Northwestern
• And a man, 33, who drove himself to Little Company of Mary Hospital in Evergreen Park with a gunshot wound to the leg and who was treated and released.

By Peter Nickeas and Jeremy Gorner | Tribune reporters 

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