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March 27, 2012 at 5:24 PM

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Cashmere teen's suicide

A familiar tale

Editor, The Times:

The story of Rafael Morelos [“Soul-searching in small town over gay teenager’s suicide,” page one, March 26] was a sadly familiar one.

These narratives seem to always follow the same well-worn path: bullying, intolerance and a highly emotional atmosphere for all involved.

I never see anyone address this kind of tragedy by questioning the sense and validity (or lack thereof) in encouraging our young people to see themselves as objects in need of labeling, rather than as unique beings.

Did Morelos derive any benefit from the mentality that insisted he define himself solely by his libidinous urges? Was any positive result obtained by the evident belief of nearly everyone concerned, including his mother, that stuffing him in the box marked “gay teenager” was a wise and sensible move?

None that I can see. We should encourage all our children to embrace the fact that they are unlike anyone else who has ever existed, that they are a one of a kind creation with talents, abilities and gifts that, taken together, make up the essence of their personal identity.

— Abelard Montague, Seattle

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