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Patton’s Blog: The new Civil Rights movement

High school is primarily a source of education, but when put in a building full of clashing personalities, “cliques” and stereotypes things can begin to hit a boiling point.

With so many young people struggling to be themselves, the simple conflicts of high school make not conforming that much more difficult.

One group of students that endure maybe the most struggles with daily life are those teenagers who are gay.

It never fails to surprise me when I see or hear the reactions of my fellow students when the words “gay”, “lesbian” or “homosexual,” make their way into a conversation. Whether it’s bringing up a famous person or gossiping about classmates, the unneeded, negative comment that is somewhat along the lines of “OMG, that person is gay?!” always seems to find its way into the conversation.

My question is simple. Why?

The world is full of judgment, persecution and prejudices. Society often struggles with diversity and situations where different cultures collide, and this one belongs to my generation.

The things we’re witnessing that effect the LGBT community today, remind me of when the people of our country took a stand against segregation, and stoop up for their neighbors and truly cared for the well being of fellow citizens.

I’d like to take it back to around the 1960’s. The Civil Rights movement was getting heavy, and people like Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. took a stand against segregation and for African-Americans to be treated as equals.

People were beat, murdered and disgraced in every way possible just because they were “different.” I do not see how different it is with the LGBTs (besides the fact that this is sexuality and that was race). Also, I would like to clarify that “different,” doesn’t exist in the way that some people think it does.

We breathe the same air, we live on the same planet and we share the same emotions, I believe we all deserve the same rights.

I also believe love is not something that you force. It just happens, and from my understanding gay people just happen to have those kinds of feelings for people of the same sex. Does that make them horrible? Does that make them any less of a person? I know a lot of people tend to think so, but no. They’re still living, breathing, human beings and are the same as you and I.

I understand that the fact that in high school, we don’t always behave as we should. A lot of times though, words people say, whether they mean them or not, hurt others.

I know that coming out and admitting to people that you are gay is one of the most difficult things LGBT people go through. This is coming from a person that has been very close to a gay person, and that was actually one of the only true best friends I’ve had throughout my entire life. It’s not easy.

All I’m trying to say here is that if you are one of those people who have a habit of not thinking before speaking, you probably should start. Words hurt, and other people will always take to heart what you have to say, whether you mean it or not. Also, if you are one of those people that have strong beliefs whether it is from your religion or whatever, it doesn’t hurt to tone it down, and always be conscious of the ones around you.

High school is a place to learn, change and become the amazing people we all should be. Letting the fact that someone “loves” someone else shouldn’t be the base someone uses to put up walls with humanity. We all are our own person, and it’s something we all must deal with, even if you don’t like it.

Blog by Sam Patton

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