Published: Mon, April 16, 2018

Prominent LGBT rights lawyer dies after setting himself on fire

Prominent LGBT rights lawyer dies after setting himself on fire

Pictured, David Buckel activist and LGBT rights lawyer.

After his lengthy legal career, Mr Buckel became deeply involved in environmental causes.

In that case, Brandon v. Richardson County, a court found the county sheriff liable for failure to protect Teena, who was killed in 1993. He left a suicide note in a shopping cart near his body, writing that he hoped his act would bring attention to the need to protect the environment. "Most humans on the planet now breathe air made unhealthy by fossil fuels, and many die early deaths as a result - my early death by fossil fuel reflects what we are doing to ourselves". He wrote that he used "fossil fuel" to set himself aflame, as a symbol of what humankind is doing the Earth.

"Pollution ravages our planet, oozing inhabitability via air, soil, water, and weather". Hilary Swank won an academy award for his role as Mr. Teena.

Mr Buckel wanted his death to lead to increased action, according to the suicide note.

Told Irena Ryjova, 44 who came past the 'mass" just after 7 am, an hour after Buckel burned himself, "It was just lying there, on its back, knees slightly bent like someone would lie on the sand at the beach'.


It's a tragic shame that Buckel's life ended in such a way, knowing all the good he could have done for the world if he were still alive.

A jogger who stumbled across the remains and shared photographs of them on Twitter before they were covered up by police said they were "freaked out" by the discovery.

Buckel was well known as a defender of gay rights and had worked as marriage project director and senior counsel at Lambda Legal, an organisation that fights for LGBT rights.

New York Daily News notes that Buckel also argued against Boy Scouts of America's ban on gay leaders and for the establishment of a Utah high school's gay student club.

He said that privilege comes with the suffering of others. "He will be remembered for his kindness, devotion, and vision for justice", Camilla Taylor, director of constitutional litigation and acting legal director, said. "He knew his craft and his trade and was strategic in how to build the blocks toward a sweeping victory". "This is a tremendous loss for our Lambda Legal family, but also for the entire movement for social justice", the firm wrote in a statement published online.

"His thoughtful and engaging advocacy broke through many stubborn misconceptions and showed it was possible and necessary for our movement to speak up for bullied, ostracised LGBT young people", she said in a statement to the Huffington Post.

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