An Indiana mother is fighting back against her teen son's possible expulsion after she sent him to school with a stun gun – as a means of protection against bullies who reportedly targeted him because he is gay.
"I do not promote violence – not at all – but what is a parent to do when she has done everything that she felt she was supposed to do ... at the school?" explained Chelisa Grimes in an interview with CNN on Sunday. "I did feel like there was nothing else left for me to do, but protect my child."
"I was at my wit's end. I didn't know what to do and I thought about suicide," Young said. "I hate saying that word because God blessed me with this life. I love life. I love my education. I would never ... but this bullying got so bad that I thought about that," added her son, Darnell 'Dynasty' Young.
Young carried the stun gun to Arsenal Technical High School in Indianapolis after months of alleged bullying and taunting by classmates who found out that he was gay. Stun guns are considered weapons and are not permitted on campus, although a hearing by the school district is yet to decide on whether to expel the teen or not.
"I brought the stun gun 'cause I wasn't safe," expressed 17-year-old Young in the interview.
"I got kicked out of school for me bringing the weapon to school, but I honestly don't think that that was fair," he added. "I didn't use it on nobody. ... All I did was raise it up in the air and went back to my class."
According to the reports, Young pulled the stun gun out of his bag and threatened to use it on a group of six students who surrounded him at school on April 16. He was arrested a short time after and carried away in handcuffs by Indianapolis police officers. No action has been taken against the students who allegedly targeted Young, and they have not been identified as yet.
Some schol staff members said that Young had dressed "flamboyantly" on several occasions, which might have irritated some of the other students.
"If you wear female apparel, then kids are kids and they're going to say whatever it is that they want to say," expressed Larry Yarrell, the Tech principal. "Because you want to be different and because you choose to wear female apparel, it may happen. In the idealistic society, it shouldn't matter. People should be able to wear what they want to wear."
Young's mother, however, insists that her son should be allowed to protect himself if school officials are not doing enough to address these concerns.
"I think that the self-protection device is what's making the news, but the big picture is that my child is not the only one who does not feel safe at our school," she said.