Romero: Gay rights the ‘civil rights challenge of our generation’

Utah State Senate Minority Leader Ross Romero celebrated Human Rights Day (what Utah calls Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday) by reaching out to Utah’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth with an opinion piece in The Salt Lake Tribune, and by adding his voice to the “It Gets Better Project” by filming a video on YouTube.

“Today, I have a message about hope and equality for today’s students, about the civil rights challenge of our generation, namely, the cause of civil equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Americans,” he wrote in his Op-Ed article.

In his article, he called on Utah Gov. Gary Herbert and other legislative leaders to join him in making an “It Gets Better” video to help prevent teen suicide in the gay and transgender community.

“Teen suicide is not a solution. This community loves you and wants you to be an adult and reach your full potential,” he said in his message. He mentioned serving with three gay and lesbian legislators on Utah’s Capitol Hill. “Remember that we stand on the shoulders of those who came before us. Whether they be Harvey Milk, Cesar Chavez or Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., things are changing and things are getting better.”

“If you need help, reach out to great community organizations like the Utah Pride Center, or Equality Utah, which help us straight allies understand the issues that are facing the gay community,” he continued.

“You deserve love and respect for who you are, and it is not until you reach adulthood that you will know exactly who you will become,” he said. “Remember, you are not alone and it gets better.”

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