I have mixed feelings about the conviction of Dharun Ravi. Obviously the death of Tyler Clementi broke my heart, and Ravi’s actions were pretty vile. But it’s a mistake to presume a direct link between a few incidents of boorish badgering and a suicide.

I don’t think there’s any doubt that Ravi would not be in this circumstance if Clementi were still alive. So here’s the awful message the conviction sends to beleaguered kids: the way to get back at your bully is to throw yourself off a bridge.

Please don’t. Find a safe zone, call the Trevor Project. Find a way to stay with us. The world will learn to love you as you are, I promise. It gets better.

©20022015 Christopher League