PUNA, Hawaii — A dad on Hawaii’s Big Island has taken to YouTube to share the stories of assault he says his young sons suffer on a regular basis at the hands of classmates all because that dad says he is an openly gay man.
In the video Alameda Franklin can be seen talking with his own to sons. In their own words the boys describe being called names, punched, hit and thrown to the ground. One son tells Franklin the abuse happens several times per month, while the older son says it is a daily occurrence.
“I was bullied because people would ask me about my father if he was gay and I would say, ‘Yeah, there’s nothing wrong with that,'” says one of Franklin’s sons who then describes one such encounter. “I tried to walk away from this kid. He jumped on me and he slammed my face to a pole and gave me a black eye.”
Franklin himself says on the video that he has witnessed some of the abuse and he has asked officials at his children's schools in Hilo to do something to protect them.
The father spoke with Hawaii's KITV over the weekend after the video blew up online, garnering more than 60-thousand views on Facebook and more than 32-thousand on YouTube.
"The school is telling the perpetrators that are doing this to my children that they need to tolerate us, and they're using the word tolerance or tolerate in a way where it's very exclusive," Alameda Franklin said in an interview with KITV4. "So, basically what's being stated is that they're not willing to tell the kids that are doing this to my children, 'Hey, you know what, there's nothing wrong with being gay.'"
KITV reports that Franklin is now considering home schooling both boys to ensure their safety. He has also launched a GoFundMe page to 'become an advocate for equality in all public schools and create a safe learning environment for any and all children.'
Despite the abuse the family has allegedly suffered, Franklin says their motto has not changed.
"Life is an opportunity to be good to others."