Ricky Martin stood up against cyberbullying by changing his Twitter profile photo to that of a teenage boy who committed suicide after being picked on for being bisexual. The Puerto Rican singer himself came out of the closet in 2010, stating on his website that he was “a fortunate homosexual man” and blessed to be who he is.
“THIS NEEDS TO STOP NOW,” the 42-year-old star wrote on his Twitter, “HOW MANY LIVES LOST BEFORE SOMEONE LISTENS #MakeALawForJamey.” The post was accompanied by a link to an article from The Advocate about 14-year-old Jamey Rodemeyer from Buffalo, New York who died recently from an apparent suicide.
The teenage boy shared his torment over being bullied through his accounts on various social networks, including YouTube and Tumblr. In a both heartbreaking and uplifting video he uploaded onto YouTube back in May, Jamey spoke positively about the support he had received from friends after coming out as a bisexual. “You were born this way and all you have to do is hold your head up and you’ll go far,” the teen said into his webcam, “… just love yourself and you’re set.”
Like Jamey, Martin has also been a victim of cyberbullying. Earlier this year, Puerto Rican pastor Wanda Rolon attacked the singer because of his sexual orientation. She took to Facebook to express her disapproval. “There is another one who wants to take people to hell! RM [Ricky Martin] is its ambassador,” she said. Rolon even arranged a protest outside a concert Martin had at El Coliseo in Puerto Rico. Martin’s foundation has since organized a cyberbullying and Internet safety summit, which will be held this Friday in Isla Verde and is open to health professionals, teachers, and parents.
Watch Jamey speak about his struggle below: