People Like Kenneth Weishuhn, People Like Us

It’s rare that I would pick on an entire post on another blog and draw it to your attention but, in this case, I have to. It relates to a young Iowa man aged just 14 who committed suicide because his so-called school ‘friends’ made him the subject of a Facebook hate group after he came out to them… some sincere words In Memoriam to Kenneth Weishuhn from ThePink Agendist. I certainly do not usually agree with everything Mr ‘Agendist’ writes – in some posts he is quite brutal in his treatment of others, including his own family members, but this post moved me in a way that is quite rare. Read a UK newspaper article on Kenneth here.

With the anti-gay movement in our Tennessee ‘homeland’ (‘not-really-homeland’??) as strong as ever, I really do despair. For every advance that acceptance of gay lifestyle seems to achieve in one place (such as UK, Europe), the reverse seems to occur somewhere else (usually but not exclusively USA). In fact, I’ve become rather unsure of myself with this poisonous Republican-driven atmosphere despite having been happily partnered to Dave here for 12 years – and I wonder increasingly what people think of us. I was even contemplating talking serious stuff to my son Leo, aged just 10 but well wised up on our (his) situation, and asking him outright what he thinks of me. Dave talked me out of that, probably wisely. But privately I’m convinced that Leo, wise beyond his years, is ‘kewl’. He’s been brilliant in dealing with his mate’s homophobic father whilst spending more time with said mate than ever.

If anyone is actually taking the trouble to read what I’ve written about my gay feelings in these books, what are they going to think – of me? I’ve kind of poured my emotions out in some places – and revealed Dave’s too, as well as some of our mates. Well, its true I suppose, I can’t help what I feel and what I think. And I can’t take it back and hide it now it’s out there. Perhaps the homesickness for the UK life that I referred to a couple of posts back is adding to this muddle in my brain. Looking back through the 80% of the final part which now exists, I realised that I have put far less emotion and much more ‘fact’ into that – a measure of my coming to terms with my chosen lifestyle, maybe, and not feeling that I need any more to justify it in print. Oh, goodness knows. Stop rambling on, Tone.

No, wait. A tiny extract from the opening of Chapter 1 in ‘Loving the Boy’:

God, I love him so much…

I love him more than anything and anyone else in the whole world…

I love because he always offers a shoulder to cry on…

I love him because he is so tender and caring…

I love him so much that it hurts…

I love him so much…

I love him…

I love…


See what I mean? And I’m proud of the geometry of that little bit, too. Not all first books come with added geometry!

Be proud of your love. Never hide from, or be intimidated by, the bigots

A little irony in that picture? Keep it dark? No way. Let it out. Be proud. Have fun together:

RIP Kenneth. I hope your soul can derive some comfort from knowing how the gay community has reacted to your story. And to Kenneth’s mum, what could I say? Be proud of your son for what he was, and what he stood for. Our thoughts are with you, too.

About tonycavanagh

Born Northampton UK; school Oxford UK and Oak Ridge Tennessee, where I met my wonderful partner Dave, also from UK. Oak Ridge is our main training base for acrobatics and circus stuff, but we also established a base in Wales (UK) to serve us when we are working in Europe. Our 'story', of finding gay love, learning the acrobatics trade and then of how we got shot at during our show (and worse was to follow - just to prove that the risks of being an acrobat are not always the most obvious ones!) are now available in my three books 'Loving the Boy', 'The Power of Love' and 'Against All Odds'. Links available on most blog posts. Actually, waiting for the imminent arrival of the first printed copies was far scarier than anything we do in performance. A fourth book - not about us but exploring the sadness of a gay Native American boy denied his true identity - is currently with an agent for evaluation. watch for 'Let The Future Find Me' in due time. And now to book five... another boy, another quest... seems its always boys...
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1 Response to People Like Kenneth Weishuhn, People Like Us

  1. Pingback: In the Beginning… « Tony Cavanagh

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