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The debate over who’s to blame for Lawrence King’s death continues to rage two months after his murder.

For those of you living under a rock, 15-year old King died in February after a 14-year old classmate, Brandon McInerney, shot him in the head. King had reportedly asked McInerney to be his Valentine, which many say spurred the violent outburst. Thus, many claim that King only invited the explosive retaliation. Journalist Neil Broverman once mulled that theory, while a Mississippi State University student took it one step further: “King… may have gone too far by imposing his sexuality on others.” A pretty distasteful conclusion – and one that will no doubt be getting heavy play during McInerney’s murder trial…

Defense attorney William Quest doesn’t simply blame King’s queer ways -like dabbling in cross-dressing – for the shooting, but school administrators, who should have stepped in to stop King:

McInerney perceived King’s treatment as harassment, Quest said. Quest, however, declined to discuss any specific confrontations or issues between the boys. He also declined to say if McInerney ever sought help from an adult to deal with the issue.

Quest said he believes school administrators supported one student expressing himself and his sexuality – King – and ignored how it affected other kids, despite complaints. Cross-dressing isn’t a normal thing in adult environments, he said, yet 12-, 13- and 14-year-olds were expected to just accept it and go on.

Quest’s right. No, not about King being responsible. About how school administrators should have gotten involved. Surely they must have known other students wouldn’t understand King’s gay displays, so teachers, counselors and other staffers should have coordinated an effort to – gasp! – educate students on sexual difference. That could have made all the difference.

Meanwhile, lest you forget, this Thursday’s the annual Day of Silence, which commemorates victims of anti-gay violence. This year’s honors King.

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