politics Commentary LGBT youth

Electing Out People Is Our Best Defense to the War Against Queer Youth

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little or no LGBTQ representation in government, anti-LGBTQ laws are now spreading like wildfire across the country. According to the ACLU, there are now almost 240 anti-LGBTQ bills introduced this year alone.“Don’t Say Gay” bills, criminalization of gender-affirming health care for trans kids, bathroom bans, sports bans, and other anti-LGBTQ bills are not harmless political tactics in a so-called “culture war.” They have serious consequences and are a matter of life and death for our kids.The sick reality is that these bills will cost lives.The Trevor Project tracks mental health among LGBTQ youth and found that queer and trans children are more than four times as likely to attempt suicide than their peers.

Suicide is the second leading cause of death among young people aged 10 to 24 because of “how they are mistreated and stigmatized in society.” This onslaught of attacks does not just perpetuate this stigma, it empowers and emboldens anti-LGBTQ hate.Enough is enough.

When our kids’ lives are on the line, we have no choice but to punch back.I have been incredibly proud to see LGBTQ lawmakers use every tool in their arsenal to speak up and fight these bills — from impassioned speeches on House and Senate floors, to organizing student protests and walkouts, to meeting with impacted constituents and families.

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