A Mother And Son Stand Up to Bullying
BY Michelle Garcia
November 30 2011 2:49 PM ET
Zach Huston loves to run. Still, the track coaches at Unioto High School in
Chillicothe, Ohio probably don't know that because he's too worried what his
peers might do if he were to join the track team.
Huston, a freshman at the school, was the subject of a beating, caught
on video that went viral online. He says that without the October 17 attack
being filmed, faculty and administrators would have taken little action against
his assailant. In fact, Huston says his classmates have taunted him since the
third grade, with little done to stop or prevent it.
"In third grade, they didn't know what gay was yet, so they didn't call me
that, but they mimicked my voice and called me other names," Huston told
The Advocate. "That was up until fifth
grade. That's when everyone started to know what gay was, so they called me gay
slurs. Then freshman year, the physical stuff started."
The 14-year-old Huston said this year in high school, other students started
daring each other to touch him, or shove him. For years his mother, Rebecca
Collins, had urged teachers to stand up for her son. Now that many have witnessed
the brutal beating and called for action, Collins said she isn't backing down
from people who say she's only drumming up publicity for money or personal
"If you're not going to protect your kid, no one else is going to do
it," she said. "If you still don't get the satisfaction that you're
looking for, then take the next step. Go to town halls, get legal counsel, and
just work to get the awareness out. We have to stop this from happening."
Collins was interviewed after the tape turned up online, and she narrated
what she saw of the vicious beating, with the attacker loitering as he waited
for Huston, then punching him as Huston tries to escape, until he finally
stands over Huston on the ground and delivers at least seven punches in quick succession,
the smacks audible on the tape.