Michele Bachmann says gay bullying at Anoka-Hennepin is "not a federal issue"

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Michele Bachmann has been conspicuously silent on the string of teenage suicides in her district.
Tammy Aaberg, the mother of 15-year-old suicide victim Justin Aaberg, recently delivered a petition to Michele Bachmann's office, asking her to publicly address the contentious issue of gay bullying in Anoka-Hennepin schools. Aaberg and a handful of local students met with Bachmann staffers at the St. Cloud campaign office.

"I think the meeting went really well," she said just after leaving. "I'm very hopeful that the congresswoman will say something positive regarding the suicides in her district and LGBT bullying in general."

Well, it appears Aaberg has her answer and it's not the one she was looking for.

Justin Aaberg was only 15 when his mother Tammy discovered him dead in his bedroom. After her son's suicide, Aaberg learned from his friends that Justin had suffered from harassment from his classmates over his sexuality. His was one of nine suicides in the district in two years.

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Justin Aaberg committed suicides in 2010.
As Bachmann's presidential campaign heated up, national and international media were quick to point out that the Anoka-Hennepin school district -- which is currently being sued by the Southern Povery Law Center over discrimination against gay students -- largely falls within Bachmann's congressional district. But despite the scrutiny, Bachmann has stayed silent on the issue.

Last week, Aaberg delivered the hefty, 2,500 page petition to Bachmann staffers. It asks the congresswoman to acknowledge the problem publicly and denounce bullying:

No student should feel threatened or unsafe at school, including lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students. Rep. Michele Bachmann has an obligation to the constituents she represents to speak out, and do everything she can to stop this dangerous trend of teen suicides in her district.

The online petition garnered over 140,000 signatures.

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Gabe Aderhold, Graham Luterbach, Tammy Aaberg and Justin Anderson deliver their petition to Bachmann offices in St. Cloud.
Although Bachmann was campaigning out of state, Aaberg says she was invited in for an hour-long meeting with two staffers. She says they apologized to her for what she's been through and to former Blaine High School student Justin Anderson, who spoke about his own struggles with bullying and suicidal thoughts. She adds that they promised to get the petition "to who it needs to get to."

"Justin here was joking, 'I hope that doesn't mean the garbage,'" she said.

Regardless where the physical document ended up, Aaberg's plea has apparently fallen on deaf ears. At a campaign rally in California, an attendee repeatedly called out to Bachmann, asking her to address the suicides.

"That's not a federal issue," she reportedly said, before moving on to the next question.

Aaberg says the guy who asked the question, Alex Limon, contacted her through Facebook to tell her the answer he'd received.

"I was not happy about that," says Aaberg. "This is still her district. It doesn't matter if it's federal or not."

On the other end of the spectrum, Senator Al Franken definitely believes this is a federal issue. He's backing the Student Nondiscrimination Act, which would extend civil rights protections for gay and lesbian students.

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Jackie Wu
Jackie Wu

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MommyLisa
MommyLisa

And again I wonder just how on earth we got here.  Isn't it 2011?  I mean, what?  Even my 97 year old GRANDMOTHER who is on her death bed is pissed at people who say mean things about Chaz Bono.  

bkmn
bkmn

Bullying is not an issue if you are a christian.  If you are  gay...you should be bullied.  That is Michele and Marcus' view and practice.

guest
guest

Funny how it's not a federal issue to Ms. Bachmann if gay people are bullied but it is if they get married. Her obvious homophobic attitude is disgusting. 

Yo banana boy
Yo banana boy

The suicide situation in that area is a horrible problem and should be addressed. However, more laws always equal less autonomy.

Zeroisanumber
Zeroisanumber

They're not talking about making new law, they're talking about changing policies in the Anoka-Hennepin school district.

Kirk the Conservative Jerk
Kirk the Conservative Jerk

Like giving people "special" protections under current law  that others would be deprived of.

Bullying is not allowed per current Anoka-Hennepin policy...

Kirk the Conservative Jerk
Kirk the Conservative Jerk

This Phony lawsuit is going down in a blaze of shame.

Don't doubt me!

Zeroisanumber
Zeroisanumber

I don't doubt that there will be a substantial change in district policy. Whether it will come from a court-order or from a settlement between the district and the SPLC is another matter.

Michelle Bachmann
Michelle Bachmann

Well since you are both a proven liar and the type of  "person"  that has made fun of the dead children in the past I think everyone will be wary of your claims. 

yo banana boy
yo banana boy

Like the real Michelle Bachman, you have absolutely no idea what's going on most of the time. This is the only post I'll ever educate/make fun of you. Any and all future posts will only be to make fun of you. Defining one's self is like trying to bite your own teeth, but I guess I'd consider myself a minarchist/socialist. I wouldn't expect your puny brain to understand that. I'm strait and always have been. Actually the mental imprint of genitalia (sex) is one of the most determining factors in character. "Yo banana boy" is a funny handle in itself, but it's also clever because it reads the same forward and back. Again, I wouldn't expect you to catch that. Furthermore, anybody who spends as much time on here as you do putting on an act is far more of a "weirdo" than me with my post calling a guy out for ripping apart someone for drinking a different kind of kool-aid. They're both the same idiots, just worshipping a different idol. Stay in your basement and off the internets for a while fake Michelle Bachman. Watch some tv instead.

Antichrist
Antichrist

lol when he gets angry, he forgets to hit the return button, it's a stream of consciousness like diarrhea

Michelle Bachmann
Michelle Bachmann

Hey super genius you replied to the wrong post.   Way to show how smart you are.  Palindromes are very witty when you are 7 so congrats there too.  Keep using "butch dyke" to show the depth of your intelligence.  I remember when I saw Stephen Hawking and he kept throwing around homophobic slurs to show how awesomely smart he was.   It is pretty funny how mad you got when I laid out the case for you being a Larry Craig style closet case.  Keep telling everyone how straight you are, that always makes it true.  Ask Marcus Bachmann. 

David Foureyes
David Foureyes

Dude, you have GOT to figure out how paragraphs work.

Lifeifajourney46
Lifeifajourney46

If this is really MB... we have a President who did not have enough experience to take on the role he has... now you want to become President?? Oh Please!!

Mn Voter
Mn Voter

How many of the 160,000 on line signatues were from the sixth district who vote for her?

I wonder why Senator Franken isn't concerned with the Democrats in the senate not having a budget for over 900 DAYS! That is the one thing the senate is responsible for.

The Southern Poverty Law Center is directing lawsuits in Minnesota? Have they outlived their mission, charter and/or purpose?

MN-Double-Voter
MN-Double-Voter

You're assuming democrats like Harry Reid, care about the rules of the Senate.  I think the democrats do not want their names on any budget bills.  Now we know who they are talking about when they say "do nothing congress".  The “do nothing congress” is the one run by democrats. (Senate)

Zeroisanumber
Zeroisanumber

I love your posts, they burp and slither out onto the internet with all of the hurly-burly, under-informed, over-privileged venom that characterizes the Tea Party as a whole. Reading them, I imagine you as an older person on limited income trying to sound intelligent and informed, but not realizing that you come off as a hornswoggled rube.

"How many of the 160,000 on line signatues were from the sixth district who vote for her?"

Probably some, but it was an online petition so they could've literally been anyone from anywhere.

"I wonder why Senator Franken isn't concerned with the Democrats in the senate not having a budget for over 900 DAYS! That is the one thing the senate is responsible for."

The Senate has many responsibilities, although what they are and are not doing is not important to this discussion.

"The Southern Poverty Law Center is directing lawsuits in Minnesota? Have they outlived their mission, charter and/or purpose?"

The SPLC's mission statement is: "The Southern Poverty Law Center is a nonprofit civil rights organization dedicated to fighting hate and bigotry, and to seeking justice for the most vulnerable members of society."

So long as there is hate and bigotry in the country, the SPLC will have a mission. The goings on in Anoka-Hennepin schools definitely fall within the bounds of "...seeking justice for the most vulnerable members of society".

theblueknight
theblueknight

@zeroisanumber. You're really impressed with yourself aren't you? You just tore that guy apart with your brilliance. Perhaps you missed the point that the U.S. senate and Mr. Franken shouldn't be focused on a local issue involving an isolated state school district. That's the problem with you lefties. You think everything has to have a federal law attached to it. Our forefathers intended for the states and local governments to have the wherewithall and autonomy to make their own decisions on such matters. Since Mr. Franken is not a local representative, school board member, or state senator, he really has no direct relationship to this issue except to try to gain a bit of free media coverage for his "deep heart felt concern."

yo banana boy
yo banana boy

Human de-evolution never ceases to amaze me. I like that "white knight" handle though. I'll call idiots out all day, hopefully you and fake michelle bachman keep feeding me material.

green23
green23

yo banana boy wrote: "Green: you're reality tunnel is remarkable."

Oh, it's a personal critique in lieu of a response to my points! How quaint.

Now let's do you. Your (not "you're") use of cliquish, 'insider' terms (e.g 'reality tunnel'), presented as something that everyone would understand, shows a social isolation and group-think usually found in people who have been heavily indoctrinated and having only limited contact with people outside of their community.

yo banana boy wrote: "When was the last time you left your community"

Two weeks ago. Went to an out-of-town wedding. Is that relevant to Bachmann, gay bullying, psychedelic chemicals, cosmic consciousness, or your defence of two right-wing reptile-brains? 'Cause, those are pretty broad targets, and you managed to miss them ALL in your remarks. I'm thinking that happens a lot when people try to communicate with you.

yo banana boy wrote: "or read something other than Time?"

Today. Obviously, I'm reading your flaky remarks. You do realise that this comment board works on text, right? But I haven't read Time since high school (assigned reading), or any other dead-tree news periodical in the past ten years. Is that relevant to Bachmann, gay bullying, psychedelic chemicals, cosmic consciousness, or your defence of two right-wing reptile-brains?

yo banana boy wrote: "Go take a nap."And you give free advice, too. We are all so privileged by your presence. I always try to seek the input of online psychedelic hermits for a variety of life decisions, but you really went the extra distance to provide that for me - without me even having to ask.

yo banana boy
yo banana boy

Green: you're reality tunnel is remarkable. When was the last time you left your community or read something other than Time? Go take a nap.

green23
green23

ybb wrote:"I prefer Robert Anton Wilson and Terence McKenna,"

For those who are not familiar with these authors, they write about psychedelic consciousness attained by the use of copious amounts of recreational chemicals.

It's funny that Kirk (the elderly, black, evangelical, Tea Party Republican) and Mn Voter (the elderly wingnut hoarding guns for the imminent fight against Sharia law) have a new buddy whose solution to the world's problems is to chew up a pile of peyote buttons.

It really speaks to the credibility of all three, doesn't it?

Zeroisanumber
Zeroisanumber

Livin' la vida Burning Man? You and Kirk will make quite a pair.

yo banana boy
yo banana boy

Ayn Rand is antiquated. RP is easily the best for the job, but he's still a dr. that doesn't believe in science. How the f does that work? I prefer Robert Anton Wilson and Terence Mckenna, amongst others.

Zeroisanumber
Zeroisanumber

Right. Is this where you start pimping Ayn Rand? Or are you a Ron Paul guy?

yo banana boy
yo banana boy

I can tell you've been to school, zero, but it takes more than $2 words to come off as knowledgable. You only see things from your reality, I think. If people come to realize nearly everything they've been taught is wrong, that culture is there enemy, people will grow. My whole point had nothing to do with your politics, it was that snooty ass attack, when in fact you are working to bring your own demise just as your enemy is. They want you divided. Take the third path, the one they don't give you.

Kirk the Conservative Jerk
Kirk the Conservative Jerk

Welcome aboard.Hopefully you stick around.   I see some come and go around here.  I think they must get discouraged by the default defense mechanism of some here.  They will call you names due to their lack of basic debate skills and inability to counter.

I like how Zero tells you to step back and "lurk" longer.  I say that's a great sign to stay out of the shadows and continue posting.

yo banana boy
yo banana boy

Why the vicious attack on that person? If you go back and read that post you'll see how ridiculous that paragraph makes you seem. All for believing in a different folly than you. You're both wrong, but after that attack you're far more wrong than he.

Michelle Bachmann
Michelle Bachmann

You actually think you come off as the mature sensible one using the term "butch dyke"  to slam someone?   Your first post on here and you reveal yourself as an angry homophobe loser.  You have made zero points using logic, facts, or wit.   So far all you've done is post childish insults and talk about how smart you are.   Zeroisanumber made you his bitch with his response.  If you think I'm an idiot I will take you to school.   I've never met a brainwashed Fox News spouting bigot that I couldn't make look stupid. 

Zeroisanumber
Zeroisanumber

Because MNVoter is a raving loon with a history of posting nothing but useless raving lunacy. They speak in a word-salad mish-mash of talk radio talking points, wrong-headed anti-labor idiocy, and myopic stupidity. In short, they've done nothing worthy of respect.

Playing the white knight in a forum that you've never read and have no experience in is pretty stupid. If you're that interested, lurk more.

yo banana boy
yo banana boy

I imagine you as a "progressive" type that thinks they're real radical; a rebel, but is actually a mega conformist that has always bought into whatever cultural position/movement is cool at the moment. You conform because as a child you were an outcast and never wish to feel alone again. You probably have a cushy governmental desk job and work in a position that "helps people". While you "help people" you are visibly aroused because you can't stop thinking to yourself just how awesome at life you are, and how much better you are than the non-believers. The cause of your grandiose ego is an irregularity in your genitals. I'm not certain of your sex: either a oldish butch dyke, or a youngish frail man. If you're a butch dyke you've always had a stinky, abnormally large vagina. If you're a frail man, you have a small, only used once, possibly deformed penis.

Michelle Bachmann
Michelle Bachmann

As a Republican you are definitely hung up about sex.   More than likely you were born a homosexual but your strict religious parents have forced you to repress those feelings deep down inside yourself.   The shame your true desires bring you makes you a mean and hate filled person.  You write long comment section posts that are obsessed with the genitals of strangers.    Your hate isn't reserved to just homosexuals as you take every chance you can to bash others.    Sometimes though you desires get to be too much and you find yourself adopting a "wide stance" at the airport bathroom.   Sure you feel happy for 5 minutes but as soon as you are done the feelings of regret and shame return.   Eventually you will be arrested and found out but then there is always Marcus Bachmann's clinic to get you back to being the straight angry right wing weirdo you were born to be.   Your penis obsession is obvious to everyone that's been to college "banana boy."    The only more closeted gay man name you could have chosen would be Marcus Bachmann. 

Zeroisanumber
Zeroisanumber

Actually, I'm a 32-year old EMT who works for a private hospital on an ambulance rig most every day. Physically, I'm 6'8" tall and I jog (no shit!). I'm single, but dating, and my politics are moderate-left. On my off days, I like shooting guns, drinking, and eating good food.

But I am white, so you've got that much right.

Koolai Jones
Koolai Jones

What did Aaberg expect?  A GOP politician in the middle of a presidential primary to take a progressive-leaning position that would do nothing but hurt her with the base she's trying to woo? 

Bachmann is stupid, but she's not THAT stupid.  She's also seething with irrational and misplaced hatred of the LGBT community at large.  I applaud Ms. Aaberg for trying to shine a spotlight on that bigotry, but I hope she didn't get her hopes up too much for actual evidence that this woman has a shred of decency or tolerance for those not white, straight, and christian.

Ziegrobb
Ziegrobb

When I started as a Nurse at Fairview Ridges.I was constantly harrassed by the Gay Nurses as I am a straight heteralsexual Christian.I have never harrassed gays-cause thats between them and God.I have my own problems trying not to commit Adultery or doing anything I feel are wrong.I am not allowed to judge another person-thats Gods job.But neither do i have to codone anyone-thats harrasment in itself!!!.I think everyone should tx each other with humanity,and no harasment of anyone esp Gays Jews or Christians.I find some of the Legalistic Religious people are the worst-they attack good kind people.Jesus was attacked also by the religious people of his day,as he hung with many of us sinners,the unacceptables.I had to transfer to another Hospital to get away from the constant bullying from this one gay person.He would tear up my patients med sheets and show the HUC Secretary and she,d get mad at me for it-she was a religious(but mean)person.Plus many things I cant tell u.Finally 2 female Nurses went in Ananamously and told what he was doing to me-they were afraid to say their names as there were many gays at this hospital.They of course did nothing to him.So I transfered.I feel that some people are just mean and wicked!!!.If I can love my enemy as Jesus says to(and forgive).I can certainly love a gay person(but not sexually!!!).

Greito12
Greito12

No offense, but citation needed.

jww
jww

You're a nurse?  Yikes.

Koolai Jones
Koolai Jones

I also hope Ms. Aaberg didn't expect sympathy from Bachmann given that it was her son who committed suicide as a result of bullying.  Bachmann probably would blame the victim, say that he should have sought "therapy" through prayer, and that he brought it on himself. 

I don't know when Bachmann is going to join this millennium and stop fearing the gay scourge, but whenever she does, it will be far too late.

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