About a month ago I was listening to my favourite podcast, The Savage Lovecast, and the presenter was having a rant. This was not unusual, Dan Savage has a rant at the start of every podcast and I love him for it. He is a gay man who has made a career out of giving sex and relationship advice in his column which is syndicated across North America, but there is a lot more to him. He has strong political opinions and often speaks out on the hyprocrisy that thrives within anti-gay groups in the US. This rant was different though, and I don’t know if rant is even the right word to use. He was sad. He was sad because yet ANOTHER gay teenager had taken his life because he found living life too difficult.
Dan said that he had read comments about the story and that the one that stood out to him was one that reflect his own thoughts. The commenter said that he wished he could have spoken to the teenager to tell him that things get better. It was a feeling Dan said he had had every time he heard of a suicide like this, and this time he was going to do something about it. He posted a video on YouTube with his partner, expressing how things had gotten better for him since his High School days, and invited listeners to do the same.
Since then, thousands of people have posted videos. Gay, straight, famous, not famous, old, not old…it is an amazing campaign. I love what Dan Savage has started, and hope it reaches the young people it needs to reach.
Here are some of my favourite videos (starting with the original)…
You can find out more about the campaign at http://www.itgetsbetterproject.com, and get the Savage Lovecast here (it’s awesome and mostly is just people ringing up and asking sex questions you never normally get to hear).