Over 100 University of Michigan Law School Grads Walk Out In Protest On Anti-Gay Ohio State Senator Rob Portman

This past Saturday over 100 University of Michigan Law School graduates walked out of thier graduation  commencement when Ohio State GOP Senator Rob Portman took to the podium to give the classes commencement speech.

Via Pride Source:

Outside the Hill Auditorium guests attending Senior Day were handed a pamphlet explaining the coming protest. About 60 percent of the graduates wore rainbow buttons or flair on their gowns. Family and friends of the graduates wore the rainbow ribbon to show solidarity with grads who would be affected by Portman’s votes.

The pamphlet contained a letter from more than 200 Michigan Law alumni to Dean Caminker.

“Senator Portman, in public life, has actively worked to deny some members of the graduating class their civil rights … Our objection is not a political one … rather we are concerned about the message Michigan Law is sending by giving an anti-gay rights speaker the honor of marking what should be a joyful occasion,” the letter read.

Congratulations and well done to the grads who walked out in protest on Portman.

THIS is exactly what needs to happen more often.  Protest and statements made against those who oppose LGBT equality in the political. public and private sector.

We must not allow the excuses and complacency that give harmful and hateful anti-gay individuals like Portman a pass because his homophobia is explained away as “his opinion”.

Would Portman have been given a pass and would he have been invited to give the University of Michigan’s commencement speech if he were an anti-semite?  A racist?  A misogynist? 

NO.

We need to start visibly showing our opinion and distaste of these hateful individuals and make personal stands and let it be known that we will no longer listen to such bullshit or to any individual who stands for hate in any way shape or form.

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Will Kohler

Will Kohler is a noted LGBT historian, journalist and owner of Back2Stonewall.com. A longtime gay activist, Will fought on the front lines of the AIDS epidemic with ACT-UP and continues fighting today for LGBT acceptance and full equality. Will’s work has been referenced in notable media venues as MSNBC and BBC News, The Washington Post, The Daily Beast, Hollywood Reporter, and Raw Story,

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