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These Game Developers are Honoring Leelah Alcorn Through the Medium She Loved

Inspired by Leelah Alcorn, #JamForLeelah is exploring trans identity in gaming (and they want your help!)

image via (cc) flickr user jDevaun.Photography

In late December, Leelah Alcorn, a transgender teenager from Ohio, ended her life. Before doing so, she scheduled a heartbreaking letter to be published online later that day. In her suicide note, Alcorn—whose conservative Christian parents had rejected her transgender identity—described the unbearable pain she felt, trapped between who she knew she was, and how she was treated by those around her. “The only way I will rest in peace is if one day transgender people aren't treated the way I was, they're treated like humans, with valid feelings and human rights” wrote Leelah, who later implored: “My death has to mean something.”

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Rutgers Experiments with Gender-Neutral Dorms

The suicide of gay freshman Tyler Clementi spurs Rutgers to pilot gender-neutral dorms.


Can gender-neutral housing programs create a safer, more inclusive college experience for gay, lesbian, and transgender students? That's the hope of officials at New Jersey's largest university, Rutgers. Three dormitories are set to become gender neutral by Fall 2011, meaning that male students can choose a female roommate, and vice versa. What's spurring the decision? Last fall, eighteen-year-old Rutgers freshman Tyler Clementi tragically committed suicide after his roommate secretly livestreamed his sexual encounter with another man onto the internet.

Gender-neutral housing is something gay students have requested—and been denied— for years. The school's Residence Life director, Joan Carbone, says that in the aftermath of Clementi's suicide, conversations with LBGTQ students led the school to take into consideration how tough it is to find an accepting roommate.

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