Gina Vaynshteyn
July 03, 2015 3:14 pm

Humans of New York — a photo project known for sharing images of New Yorkers in their rawest, most emotional element — uploaded a photo of a young boy today that’s captured the collective heart of the Internet.

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The incredibly moving, honest and heartbreaking post was uploaded earlier today, and has since been liked about 270,000 times and shared by 21,000 people on Facebook. It even captured the attention of Hillary Clinton. The Guardian reports Clinton took to Facebook today to show her support and encouragement for the subject of the photo. Here’s her comment, which she signed with an “H” (meaning, it was really Hillary who left the comment!):

Others—many others—have left incredibly supportive, positive comments on the photo, as well. It’s amazing to see the tenderness and support this brave boy has elicited by sharing his difficult moment with HoNY.

The post initially ran into some issues with Facebook this morning after it was briefly taken down by the social media platform, according to Jezebel. HoNY’s Brandon Stanton wasn’t sure whether it was a glitch or not, but he was able to post the photo again —and we’re glad he did, because the world is currently in awe of its powerful (albeit heartbreaking) message.

The image speaks volumes and reflects on a still very-much divided nation on homosexuality —while Americans have become much more supportive of the LGBTQ+ community, still, only 57% support same-sex marriage. This means we still have some ways to go until homophobia is banished completely.

One step towards greater acceptance is revealing how damaging and painful the threat of homophobia can be—and the toll it really takes on young people. And that’s exactly why this image is so important. Someday, we hope this boy’s feelings and fear are just a thing of the past. And to echo Hillary Clinton, we believe someday they will be.

(Images via Facebook, Twitter)

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