Maybe Gen Z isn’t as woke as we think. While the age group is certainly associated with liberal ideology, some are taking a stand in a very bold way.
Lauren Chen is encouraged by the recent happenings in a Massachusetts middle school, where students pre-planned a protest during a Pride celebration.
Students who took part in the protest dressed in red, white, and blue while they chanted, “My pronouns are U.S.A.!” They also tore down the Pride decorations in the hallway in response to feeling forced to participate in activism that is “by nature exclusionary,” according to Chen.
She affirms the students’ decision to “focus on their American identity, which includes all Americans, including LGBT ones.”
“That’s kind of brilliant,” she says, and totally “within the vein of civil disobedience.”
In response to the protest, the superintendent wrote, “Burlington Public Schools believe in the individual dignity and humanity of each and every person in our community. We embrace everyone for who they are and for what they bring to our schools and larger community.”
“Nice words,” Chen says, “but the thing is that the superintendent didn’t seem to care so much about being kind and embracing everybody when he essentially, or his school essentially, told straight students that they don’t exist and are certainly less worthy of being celebrated than their LGBT counterparts.”
What Chen is referring to is a Tennessee Williams quote that was displayed in the school that read: “What is straight? A line can be straight, or a street, but the human heart, oh, no, it’s curved like a road through mountains.”
“Kind of seems like they’re saying no one is straight, which is outright not true,” Chen says.
It’s not just American students who are speaking out. Across the pond, tension tied to the LGBTQ+ movement is just as common. Chen plays a recording of a conversation between a student and teacher in a U.K. school. You won’t believe what this educator says. Watch the full video here.
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