Gay hiking

Hundreds of students hold a ‘We Say Gay’ rally in New York to protest Florida’s ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bill

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) — More than 600 students from New York and Long Island gathered at Citi Field on Wednesday for a “We Say Gay” rally to protest Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” bill.

The measure prevents discussion of sexual orientation or gender identity in kindergarten through 3rd grade, or in a way that is not what the state considers age-appropriate.

Critics say the clause is vague and opens the door to targeting students of all ages.

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The protest took place during the 26th Annual LGBT Network Youth Gathering and Conference.

“The message we had with the rally, which was the largest in the country, was that we weren’t going to shut up,” LGBT network CEO David Kilmnic said. “We are not going to be put in the closet. We are not going to let our young LGTB suffer from not being able to be in their schools and in their communities.”

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is leaning toward signing the bill, and the potential ramifications are top of mind for many students who gathered for a day of networking and empowerment.

“It’s crazy that they actually made a law that says you can’t say the word ‘gay’ in school, which is insane,” said high school sophomore James Talbot. Sayville.

Those in attendance said they were rallying around LGBTQ youth and said — loud and clear — that “We Say Gay.

Chelsea Franklin/senior, HS Landmark

“It makes me feel like there are still things to change about government and America in general and acceptance in general,” said Chelsea Franklin, a senior at Landmark High School. “It’s really crazy that people can tell you what not to say, especially when it has such an effect on the whole community.”

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