Questions are being asked whether Isabel Laxamana, a 13 year old Tacoma, Washington, teen’s suicide death was the result of her father public shaming her by uploading a video on youtube documenting the man punishing her for perceived transgressions.
According to a report via Tacoma’s News Tribune, the Giaudrone Middle School teen, who at the time the outlet had declined to specifically identify, jumped off Interstate 5, a highway overpass bridge on Friday, May 29th shortly after a video of her having her hair cut off by her father.
Despite being taken to a Seattle hospital, the teen would die of her injuries on Saturday.
With the girl’s death and the looming existence of the video, since removed, friends of the girl began asking whether Isabel Laxamana’s suicide came as a result of the extreme humiliation and denigration the girl presumably felt at the hands of her father?
Whilst the father may have taken down the video (and can we wonder why?), friends of the girl, according to a report via jezebel managed to tape the original on a mobile phone and re post it back on youtube (see below).
Demands the father’s voice in the video: ‘The consequences of getting messed up, man, you lost all that beautiful hair,’
Before the girl can respond, the video pans to the ground where the girl’s long black hair lies scattered.
Asks the voice again: ‘Was it worth it?’
‘No’ responds the girl barely audible.
Asks the voice again: ‘How many times did I warn you?’
‘A lot’ replies the 13 year old, her voice again barely audible.
Of course nothing shames any (young) woman more than to have her long hair cut against her will, especially by her very own father. A course of action probably not lost on the girl’s father.
Soon after Isabel’s death, a blog called Tacoma Stories asserted that the public shaming of the teen led to her suicide and constituted abuse.
Extols the post: Public shaming is a form of abuse. There are those who will say that it teaches a lesson. So does punching someone in the face. That doesn’t make it okay to do to your children. My thoughts are with this young girl. I hope that she gets the help she needs. I also hope her father gets the help he so clearly needs and that her family can heal from these traumatic events brought on by public shaming.
Since John Cameron’s blog post went live, the author told he had been forced to close comments after the girl’s family reached out.
Never mind, by then a Facebook page called Justice for Izabel came to be inundated with calls for her father to be criminally prosecuted or else publicly shamed himself.
Yes the double edged beauty of social media.
Hazing or shaming?
Whilst jezebel rightly wonders that there may have been a myriad of events going on in the girl’s life leading up to her suicide, which makes pointing fingers at the girl’s father not necessarily the wisest choice, the outlet draws on Isabel’s Google Plus account to shed some further light.
In what appears to be instances of bullying the girl incurred at school, a post the girl wrote reflects:
I feel hated most of the time im in school i feel looked down on and i get judged alot…. But what keeps me going is people like kian who have gone through the same thing as me… In a school with so many people its weird to say “i feel alone” but the truth is that you really do feel alone. So thanks for everything kian….
Which of course raises the question, was the one man in a 13 year old teen girl’s life, the one man who she felt she could always look up to and protect her, now also in her eyes a bully, as she looked out a bridge overpass and forever jumped into the abyss?
Below video, is the school tribute to the fallen teen.