Tennessee 14-Year-Old Commits Suicide After Constant Bullying

“He kept telling me he had a rock on his chest—he just wanted to take the rock off where he could breathe.”

Those were the words of Ruby Harris, grandmother of 14-year-old Phillip Parker, who took his own life last week after enduring constant bullying for being gay.

WSMV 4 in Nashville reports Phillip’s family reported the situation to administrators at Gordonsville High School several times,  “but the bullying by a group of students just got worse.”

We’re getting tired of writing these stories, as we’re sure you are of reading them. Whatever systems are in place—”It Gets Better,” the Trevor Project—clearly aren’t working. So what’s the solution?

*Should we focus on anti-bullying legislation? Is it even worth trying to stop something as endemic and ancient as bullying?

*Should we discourage kids this young and living in such unwelcoming environments from coming out?

*Do we teach LGBT tweens and teens how to defend themselves—thus perpetuating the cycle of violence?

Give your thoughts in the comments section.