By all accounts Dharun Ravi, a former Rutgers University freshman should have had a promising future, but he won’t because he is responsible for the suicide of Tyler Clementi.
Ravi was indicted yesterday on a hate-crime charge for allegedly using a Web cam to spy on a same-sex encounter involving his roommate Tyler Clementi, who committed suicide after seeing tweets and videos of himself kissing a man.
Tyler Clementi was so devastated after seeing the videos of himself and another male kissing, and the taunts of many tweets about the incident, that he could not bare the humiliation and jumped off the George Washington bridge.
Tyler would be here today if it were not for Ravi and another Rutgers student Molly Wei who invaded his privacy.
They thought that virally spreading the kiss was a joke. It wasn’t. They should have known better. If Tyler Clementi had been kissing a girl this tragic hate crime and suicide would never have taken place.
At the end of the day, a bright and shining star is gone, and two Rutgers students have ruined their own futures.
A 15-count indictment was handed up yesterday by a Middlesex County grand jury against Dharun Ravi, of Plainsboro, NJ who had already faced invasion-of-privacy charges along with another student, Molly Wei, in a case that has brought national attention to the issue of bullying.
Ravi was indicted with charges of bias intimidation, invasion of privacy, witness-and evidence-tampering and other charges stemming from Tyler’s suicide last September. According to news sources, charges against Wei would not be presented to the grand jury “at this time.”
Ravi’s attorneys are coming up with excuses that the Web-cam stream was viewed on only a single computer and did not show the men having sex.
The indictment says Ravi targeted Clementi and invaded his privacy knowing that he would be intimidated because of his sexual orientation. The indictment further adds that Ravi deleted a Twitter post letting others know how they could view a second encounter involving Clementi and replaced it with a false tweet; deleted text messages sent and received by witnesses; and gave false information to police — all actions that were intended to mislead investigators.
If Ravi is convicted of the most serious bias charge, he could face five to 10 years in prison – all because of his hatred and online irresponsibility.
Parents should pay attention to this case. It’s tragic and could have been avoided if Ravi and Wei were tolerant of homosexuality, and if from a young age their parents had taught them online morals, ethics and responsibility.
This is a wake up call to all parents to teach tolerance, respect and responsibility. Cyberbullying is a crime. Hatred for another person or their sexual preferences should never exist! Teach your children kindness, respect and online morals.
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