In September 2010, syndicated columnist and author Dan Savage created a YouTube video with his partner Terry Miller to inspire hope for young people facing harassment. In response to a number of students taking their own lives after being bullied in school, they wanted to create a personal way for supporters everywhere to tell LGBT youth that, yes, it does indeed get better.
The It Gets Better Project has become a worldwide movement, inspiring more than 50,000 user-created videos viewed more than 50 million times. To date, the project has received submissions from celebrities, organizations, activists, politicians and media personalities, including President Barack Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Rep. Nancy Pelosi, Adam Lambert, Anne Hathaway, Colin Farrell, Matthew Morrison of “Glee”, Joe Jonas, Joel Madden, Ke$ha, Sarah Silverman, Tim Gunn, Ellen DeGeneres, Suze Orman, the staffs of The Gap, Google, Facebook, Pixar, the Broadway community, and many more. For us, every video changes a life. It doesn’t matter who makes it.
Here are two gutsy videos from Portland and San Francisco police in response to a national problem: an epidemic of suicide and self-hate going on among LGBT youth.
The message is strong and simple for these youth: “IT GETS BETTER!”
These law enforcement professionals come out of the closet and talk about their lives and their sexual orientation. It is a fitting tribute to the contibution GLBT men and women have made to policing. For my experience in Madison, I can attest to that.
This is a strong contribution and two of the qualities police need to practice: modelling and leading.
See my book for more insight and direction on these and other important police improvement issues.