Colin Farrell has thrown his support behind a campaign against gay bullying in his native Ireland called Stand Up! Don’t Stand for Homophobic Bullying. The campaign comes from the BeLonG To Youth Services charity, which advocates for LGBT youth in Ireland.
Farrell’s brother Eamon, who is gay, was bullied as a child. Colin alluded to the impact Eamon’s mistreatment had on him in a statement in support of the Stand Up campaign, which appears below:
If there was one great wish I have for my country — for a land that I love and a people I so revere — it would be that school bullying were a thing of our past.
So much has befallen us in our shared history as a people. The harshest of these times have threatened to take our dignity, or scald our hearts into closing.
Most of our great trials, from soiled land to the institutionalized abuse of trust and power, were inflicted upon us, whether by nature or the power corrupt. Now with bullying, there is a clear choice and the choice is ours.
Each individual, as a member of his and her community, must Stand Up! in the face of this appalling brutality that plagues our schools. In effect, bullying is no less than the systematic doling out of pain upon the innocent. It is literally laughing in the face of somebody as they fall into increasingly grave danger. It’s not my place to draw parallels, but we have had enough of such hardships. The world has.
Whether it be the attacking of gay students, which I witnessed firsthand happening to my own brother, or students who are in the minority as a result of race or religious beliefs or any other such characteristic that separates them from ‘the norm,’ it is all wrong and has no place in a just and compassionate country such as I know Ireland to be. We have always been praised as being the friendliest and most welcoming race in the world. My wish is for us to prove it daily, in the school yards and playgrounds across this Great Land of Ours.
Colin and Eamon Farrell have supported BeLonG To for several years. What do you think of Colin’s statement on behalf of the Stand Up campaign?