A Western Connecticut State University LGBTQ+ roundtable discussion was held Monday. October is LGBTQ+ History Month. 5th District Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty joined students and faculty members to discuss the climate on campus. She says faculty advisers do take these matters seriously and credited the Gay Straight Alliance with creating an inclusive atmosphere.
She shared a story about when her brother first came out, and her mother asked him not to tell their father. Esty noted that in the 1970s, AIDS was prevalent and families would disavow their kids. She says this country should be about freedom and dignity, with people proving their worth based on what they do, not how they identify.
One of the big issues that the students discusses was the amount of hate on social media. Esty says people should have to identify themselves by name because words have meaning. She believes everyone should be willing to stand behind their words.
One student shared a story of her brother being in the Marines, and received support from his comrades . Esty was encouraged by how many people in the administration urged the President to reconsider the ban on transgender people in the military.