Jacksonville, Fla. student Seth Owen had a 4.16 GPA and all the promise of the future. He just had no money to make it a reality. That’s when the town chipped in to help fund his college education.
Donors raised over $120,000 to further the teen’s career after discovering his parents were anti-LGBTQ and would not support their gay son.
The 18-year-old had been accepted to Georgetown University as part of its Class of 2022. Unfortunately for Owen, however, his financial aid package was incorrect. He no longer had financial backing.
Owen told NBC News that he had moved out of his parent’s home in February after multiple arguments pertaining to his sexuality. He had endured over a year of attempted “conversion therapy” with their prodding.
He told NBC News, “I started to cry, because I realized there was no way that I could go to college. Georgetown was my only option, because I had already denied my other acceptances.”
He realized he needed $20,000 to get through the first year of school – and then his biology teacher stepped in.
“Seth was just a kid that really stood out to me,” the teacher, Jane Martin, told NBC News. “He was super ambitious and was always trying to go above and beyond to make sure he could be as successful as possible.”
Martin set up a GoFundMe page in support of her persevering pupil.
“I taught Seth biology and mentored him throughout his high school years,” Martin wrote on the page. “He was the ring bearer in my wedding. Last month, I watched him walk across the stage in a Jacksonville arena weighted down by more cords and medals to count. I’m writing this community for help.”
The community delivered.
“Earlier this year (after a year of attempted conversion therapy), Seth’s parents gave him an ultimatum. He would either continue to attend the church that outwardly attacked him and his sexual orientation or he would need to leave home,” she wrote. “For his own well-being and safety, Seth chose the later.”
He lived with friends and worked to carry his financial weight – almost full-time while finishing high school at the top of his class as the co-valedictorian.
“According to the HRC’s Youth Report, 42% of LGBT youth say the community in which they live in is not accepting of LGBT people. In the high school Seth attended, he had a gay-straight alliance, mentors, and friends who accepted him as an out and proud gay male student. This is unfortunately not always the case in schools around our country,” Martin wrote, with the assistance of Owen.
With her goal met, Martin has a new one for supporters: keep giving to your communities.
“While it seems appropriate to shower Seth’s supporters with gratitude (and we are eternally thankful for your support), I instead want to implore you to continue your allyship offline in your own communities,” she wrote. “There are voices and stories who deserve to be amplified, uplifted, and supported just as much as Seth’s story. There are organizations working to provide resources, safe spaces, and support to LGBTQ students who need funding and volunteers. Find those voices and organizations. Invest in them and help make our nation a little brighter and inclusive for all.”
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Chairman Adam Schiff’s Speech Destroying House Republicans Ignites Popular #YouMightThinkItsOK Rallying Cry
Many are cheering House Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff‘s response to Republicans on his Committee calling for his resignation Thursday. Chastising his colleagues, Schiff delivered a powerful four-minute takedown of the GOP’s defense of what he called the President’s and his team’s “immoral,” “unethical,” “unpatriotic,” and “corrupt” behavior.
“My colleagues might think it’s okay that the Russians offered dirt on the Democratic candidate for president as part of what’s described as the Russian government’s effort to help the Trump campaign,” Chairman Schiff began (video below, full transcript here.) “You might think that’s okay. My colleagues might think it’s okay that when that was offered to the son of the president, who had a pivotal role in the campaign, that the president’s son did not call the FBI, he did not adamantly refuse that foreign help — no, instead that son said he would ‘love’ the help with the Russians.”
Adam Schiff is my Congressman, so I have a bit more of a stake in this nonsense. The people who are demanding that he resign are not terribly intelligent. We should want more for America than a president who equates personal disloyalty with actual treason. pic.twitter.com/hUl24pYC1i
— Jamil Smith (@JamilSmith) March 28, 2019
Schiff repeated his “you might think” mantra about 20 times in four minutes, and it’s ignited an explosion of people on social media who agree that regardless of what Attorney General William Barr would like America to believe, Trump and his team have committed “immoral,” “unethical,” “unpatriotic,” and “corrupt” acts.
They’ve turned it into a very popular hashtag on Twitter.
#YouMightThinkItsOK has turned into a blistering attack on everything Trump, including all the bad acts his administration is perpetrating.
It is now a rallying cry.
Take a look:
Dear #GOP, #YouMightThinkItsOK to use your attacks on @RepAdamSchiff as a smokescreen to distract from the fact that an overwhelming number of Americans demand to see the #MuellerReport UNREDACTED and UNEDITED but it’s not working and this isn’t going to go away. https://t.co/3jKWz8TBkJ
— PurpleGimp (@PurpleGimp) March 29, 2019
#YouMightThinkItsOK to take a 4-page document by a partisan official that summarizes over 300 pages of legal analysis as gospel truth.
Me, not so much. pic.twitter.com/KJiuifU6qY
— Eric Wolfson (@EricWolfson) March 29, 2019
#YouMightThinkItsOK for Trump appointee Seema Verma to use government money meant for Medicare, Medicaid and the ACA to pay off millions of dollars to her Republican buddies while she demands work requirements for poor people on Medicaid, but I don’t.https://t.co/5x0jp8MsPI
— Keith Boykin (@keithboykin) March 29, 2019
#YouMightThinkItsOK to take billions of dollars from the military to build your unwanted border wall
This veteran don’t think so and I’m sure, I’m not alone… pic.twitter.com/SQXS5axwwJ
— Dr. Arnita Fowler (@ArnitaFowler) March 29, 2019
#YouMightThinkItsOK that children at the border die while waiting to get into our country to get away from horrendous conditions, but I don’t…
— Marie H1 (@marieh01) March 29, 2019
— Annette (@dolfin513) March 29, 2019
#YouMightThinkItsOK to spike the football & declare full exoneration after the #BarrLetter (that literally proclaimed that you were NOT exonerated) but true Americans, to the tune of 84%, want to see the actual #MuellerReport themselves to make their own determination on facts.
— Shaolin Fantastic #YouMightThinkItsOk (@ShaolinPhan) March 29, 2019
#YouMightThinkItsOk I don’t think it’s okay! We stand with @RepAdamSchiff. I’ve watched this numerous times and I am in awe of his composure and the plain facts he so eloquently described. #ReleaseTheFullMuellerReport
— Chris HC (@chcjtbaseball) March 29, 2019
to rip babies from their parents at the border, to rip healthcare away from millions of Americans, to rip the budget away from the Special Olympics, to rip off taxpayers to fund a useless wall, countless golf excursions and obscene “rallies”, but I do not. 🇺🇸
— Lisa Guerrero 💃🏽 (@4lisaguerrero) March 29, 2019
#YouMightThinkItsOK @GOP to lie about this #TaxScam being good for the middle class but had my taxes done. No refund this uear. We owe $1000’s more than Amazon & Google. Now it’s ok to lie about healthcare again? Take from us to give to the rich & corporations. I call BS
— OhioFerfer (@FerferOhio) March 29, 2019
— B.J. Mrozek (@BJMrozek1) March 29, 2019
— Jess (@jessiwhiteside) March 29, 2019
#YouMightThinkItsOK for a 9yr old girl to be detained at the border for 30 Hours despite being a U.S. citizen just because of the color of her skin I sure as hell don’t!https://t.co/Q8X9H7VhAJ#IStandWithSchiff #IStandWithAdamSchiff #ReleaseTheFullMuellerReport #TheResistance
— #ObamaBestEver (@lordxmen2k) March 29, 2019
#YouMightThinkItsOK to insult, degrade, attack, judge, dismiss, and make fun of minorities, women, people with disabilities, migrants, and democracy, but I sure as hell don’t.
— Susan Finn (@SFinn14) March 29, 2019
..to propose a budget including a 26% reduction to state grants for special education & millions of dollars in cuts to programs for students who are blind.https://t.co/nJPUPfXEK6
— Some Knucklehead (@TheBoltUpright) March 28, 2019
— Middle Sister Images (@StacyBogan1) March 29, 2019
— Pat Fuller Ω #ForThePeople (@bannerite) March 29, 2019
— Liza Perkins (@eliza_cap) March 29, 2019
GOP , you may think it’s okay to destroy our standing in the world, take away our healthcare, refuse to save our planet, allow our children to be shot in schools daily, take away funding for programs we need, caging children, etc, etc, etc, but I don’t! #YouMightThinkItsOK
— Angela MAHONEY (@Angieakm) March 29, 2019
— Tom Hail 🇺🇸 (@fly44d) March 28, 2019
#YouMightThinkItsOK to control a woman’s reproductive rights, but I don’t
— Pat Fuller Ω #ForThePeople (@bannerite) March 29, 2019
#YouMightThinkItsOK to say journalist are the enemy of the people but I dont! 🇺🇸
— Austin 🇺🇸 (@debi_austin) March 29, 2019
— sam2120 (@shawn4145) March 29, 2019
— Ima🌎WorldWatcher🌎2 (@ImaWorldWatcher) March 29, 2019
— Grammar_Mom (@Grammar_Mom) March 29, 2019
#YouMightThinkItsOK to attack our free press and call them fake news, but I call that fascism !
— Pat Fuller Ω #ForThePeople (@bannerite) March 29, 2019
It’s also worth pointing out that all of the evidence outlined in this monumental speech by @RepAdamSchiff is confined to what we know from the public record. I imagine there is more in the real report. #YouMightThinkItsOK #ReleaseTheFullMuellerReport https://t.co/AKtct1lGPX
— Amy Shaw (@AYS1960) March 29, 2019
Ellen Page Blames Mike Pence for Anti-LGBTQ Hate: ‘You Spend Your Career Trying to Cause Suffering’ (Video)
‘Connect the Dots’
Ellen Page did not mince words and did not hold back in a powerful and strong attack on Vice President Mike Pence Thursday night. The 31-year old actress who married dancer Emma Portner last year appeared on “The Late Show” and blamed Pence for anti-LGBTQ hate and violence.
“Connect the dots,” she urged the audience, linking the Vice President’s staunch anti-LGBT agenda, including from when he was the governor of Indiana and a U.S. Congressman, to hate and violence.
“If you are in a position of power and you hate people, and you want to cause suffering to them, you go through the trouble, you spend your career trying to cause suffering,” Page charged.
“What do you think is going to happen? Kids are going to be abused, and they’re going to kill themselves. And people are going to be beaten on the street. I have traveled the world and I have met the most marginalized people you can meet. I am lucky to have this time and this privilege to say this. This needs to fucking stop.”
Page was referring to her VICELAND show “Gaycation,” during which she traveled to several countries around the world and interviewed anti-LGBTQ extremists.
“Sorry, I’m really fired up tonight, but it feels impossible to not feel this way right now with the President and Vice President Mike Pence, who wishes I couldn’t be married, let’s just be clear. The Vice President of America wishes I didn’t have the love with my wife. He wanted to ban that in Indiana. He believes in conversion therapy,” Page told Colbert.
Page said Pence “has hurt LGBTQ people so badly as the governor of Indiana, and I think the thing we need to know, and I hope my show ‘Gaycation’ did this in terms of connecting the dots, in terms of what happened the other day to Jussie [Smollett], I don’t know him personally, I send all of my love, connect the dots.”
— The Late Show (@colbertlateshow) February 1, 2019
Ocasio-Cortez speaks on justice at Women’s March
Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez addressed the New York edition of the Women’s March yesterday, presenting a message of inclusion and intersectionality.
Evoking the civil rights movement on the weekend before Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Ocasio-Cortez spoke of the Women’s March being a continuation of that movement’s fight for justice.
“Justice is not a concept we read about in a book,” said Ocasio-Cortez . “Justice is about the water that we drink. Justice is about the air that we breathe. Justice is about how easy it is to vote. Justice is about how much ladies get paid. Justice is about if we can stay with our children after have them for a just amount of time: mothers, fathers, and all parents. Justice is about making sure that being polite is not the same thing as being quiet.”
“In fact, sometimes the most righteous thing you can do is shake the table,” she added.
As she spoke, Ocasio-Cortez was wearing a pin on her jacket that featured both a traditional LGBTQ rainbow flag alongside a transgender flag.
“Let us remember that a fight means no person left behind,” said Ocasio-Cortez . “So, when people want to stop talking about the issues black women face, when people want to stop talking about the issues that trans women or immigrant women face, we’ve got to ask them, Why does that make you so uncomfortable?
“This is not just about identity, this is about justice and this is about the America we are going to bring into this world,” Ocasio-Cortez added.
The March was not without its own controversies, as some in the leadership of Women’s March Inc., located primarily in Washington, DC, have had associations with Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan, a man known for anti-Semitic views as well as anti-LGBTQ and even anti-woman stances.
This led to many events remaining independent from Women’s March Inc. leadership, even as that leadership seeks to repudiate messages of hate.
Ocasio-Cortez spoke at both the “Unity” event affiliated with the Women’s March Inc., as well as the independent NYC Women’s March. This speech was presented at the affiliated event, even though she spoke at both, and received the aforementioned lapel pin at the NYC Women’s March event.
View the whole speech below:
Image via screen capture from video source.
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