I’ve spent part of my morning reading Jason Cherkis’ “Queer and Loathing: Does the Foster Care System Bully Gay Kids?“, in Mother Jones. It’s a difficult, damning examination of one child’s story and it sits at the intersection of so many issues we must resolve, as a society. This twisted my stomach in to knots:
As a gay foster child in Washington, DC, Kenneth spent most of his weekends alone. By the summer of 2009, the isolation had gotten so bad that he’d started calling his cell-phone carrier’s help line with imaginary complaints, just so he could vent to somebody about something. He would even text himself encouraging messages, like “Good job,” or “Damn you so strong.”
You’d think placing Kenneth would be relatively easy. He had decent grades and no criminal record. He spent his weekend nights doing chores, and loved to show off his spotless stove or the 17th redesign of his tiny bedroom. Although he struggled with a mood disorder, he’d learned to keep it in check. But what people saw first were his lipstick, his painted nails—his sexual orientation. “I’m just really worried about where we place you,” the judge said at one hearing. “I don’t know that there’s a perfect place.”
The rest is here.