I was so embarrased I could have just died

by Wes Fager (c) 2003

EXTORTION - The use, or the express or implicit threat of the use, of violence or other criminal means to cause harm to person, reputation, or property as a means to obtain property from someone else with his consent. USC 18

Imagine you are a 13 year old white boy named John (or John's mom or dad) and you are seeing Dr. Thompson, your psychiatrist, for the third time. Your parents had sent you to Dr. Thompson because they thought you were using drugs. He has you on Prozac which is helping you cope much the same way as marijuana had done. Actually you are very depressed and Dr. Thompson is very trusting and seems genuinely concerned about you, so you take the big step to get it off your chest. You tell him that you had been sexually molested by a priest when you were seven, and though it didn't bother you too much then, it does now because everybody is talking about queers and homos.  "Dr. Thompson, am I a queer?" you sob. The good doctor assures you that you are a victim of childhood sexual abuse; that you're not a homosexual; that you're no different from other guys. After that visit though Dr. Thompson  seems keenly interested, almost fixated, in possibly any other sexual traumas you may have experienced, especially any episodes with mom or dad. And he is curious about sex with animals. You have to lay it all out he tells you if you want him to help you get past it. 

One day somebody nominates you for office with the student government. You accept; not realizing you would have to go before the student body in assembly to give a campaign speech. But you do it. And so there you are, standing at the podium in front of 250 well behaved kids. Hands trembling, knees knocking, with your stomach in knots you start off with the joke your dad suggested you tell. Your whispers can hardly be heard but the microphone amplifies hugely. The the room fills with laughter. That's better. And then, all of a sudden, out of the wings Dr. Thompson appears. He grabs the mic from your sweaty hands and speaks.  "Boys and girls," he pauses,  "I just wanted to let you know that John here, your fellow student  once sucked a man's dick." 
Your mind screams with terror!!!  The crowd becomes silent. Suddenly their cheers turn to jeers as they start shouting  in unison,  "Get Honest!  Tell all!  Get Honest!"  A girl calls you a queer but then tells you she loves you.  Another tells you you are disgusting but that she loves you too. Somebody spurts out that drugs have turned you into a homosexual. "How did it make you feel?" a juvenile psychotherapist implores, ending, like the others, with "I love you."  "You'll die if you leave us." Gayfer. Homo. The names pour in.  Trembling, you  make a mad dash to jump out the first floor window to flee--if you were on the eight floor you would jump to die--but  they're all around you like of swarm of  flies blocking your exit.  Your face begins to stink and looks like Vaseline. It is a strange admixture of human spit and your own tears. Your pants smell like urine.  You try to push them out of your face but that only makes them wrestle you to the floor.  They sit on every part of your body. You can't breathe. Their fingernails dig into the pressure points in your arms and groin cutting off circulation so that your arms and legs go numb. You vomit on yourself. 

Everybody sings Zipidee Do Dah.  One kid who seems to be a leader kid asks whether anybody has anything to say to you when all of a sudden everybody, I mean 200 kids, start undulating their bodies in wild contorted gyrations while flapping their arms. There is absolutely no sound in the room except for the flapping of their arms. It sounds like a thousand birds startled in an aviary by a circling hawk. They are all trying at once for a chance to correct you, to guide you. One by one those motivating the wildest are called upon to speak to you. As each one scolds you he tells you that he loves you. They tell you that in order to remain sober you have to write up and sign a statement that details your illegal drug use and your sex life. Sometimes they call the document a "moral inventory", other times it's a "chain of command" or a "dishonesty list." A boy hugs you  and says, "I love you."   

Ladies and gentlemen, you may have read Stanley Kubrick's terrifying futuristic novel about behavior modification-- A Clockwork Orange --but that was just a fantasy, a work of fiction. What I've just described actually happens. In America. If you replace the psychiatrist with a white, 16 year old high school dropout and throw in one hundred million dollars what you have is Straight, Incorporated. 50,000 kids treated. PTSD, shame and guilt, depression, mental illness, body carvings, countless suicide attempts, and suicide.