Gay Rights Lawyer Fatally Sets Self on Fire for Different Cause


High-profile United States gay rights lawyer and environmental advocate David Buckel, 60, has self-immolated in a public park in a grisly protest against humanity's destruction of the planet.

The remains of David Buckel, 60, were found by civilians passing through the NY park, and police say he was pronounced dead at around 6:30 a.m EST.

A suicide note near the lawyer's remains said he had immolated himself using fossil fuel to symbolize the damage humans are doing to the Earth.

'I hope it is an honorable death that might serve others'.

The case attracted quite a lot of publicity and was even adapted into a movie, concentrating on Teena's life named "Boys Don't Cry", which won actress Hillary Swank an Academy Award.

Buckel also served as marriage project director at Lambda Legal, a national organization that fights for LGBTQ rights, where he was the strategist behind same-sex marriage cases in New Jersey and Iowa.

"Pollution ravages our planet, oozing inhabitability via air, soil, water and weather", he wrote.

The envelope containing both notes were inside a garbage bag, placed in a shopping cart near the charred remains of his body, according to the Daily News.

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The New York Times reported the note said: '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'.

Offered Camilla Taylor, Lamba Legal's director of constitutional litigation and acting legal director in a statement, 'This is a tragic loss for our Lambda Legal family and for the social justice movement'.

In the note, Buckel said "I just killed myself by fire as a protest suicide", the News reported.

'A lifetime of service may best be preserved by giving a life... "Honorable goal in life invites honorable objective in death", he wrote, according to his note.

Varous said she often saw Buckel and his partner at the Park Slope Food Co-op and a farmer's market.

He represented Brandon Teena's mother in a lawsuit against the New England sheriff which notified Teena's rapists that he had pressed charges and did nothing to protect him from being killed. The man's death is an apparent suicide, cops said.

He worked in composting groups for local projects and was also a lawyer who campaigned for gay rights.

The New York Times quoted friends of Buckel as saying that he became involved in environmental causes after leaving Lambda Legal. David was a lovely human being who was universally kind to everyone at Lambda Legal, committed to his clients, and devoted to our work'. "We were a little freaked out", the jogger told the Daily News.

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