things that matter

LGBTQ+ Community And Allies Stage Kiss-A-Thon For Equal Rights At High-End Mall In Colombia

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A young gay couple was holding hands and acting like most couples when they were at the Centro Comercial Andino in Bogotá, Colombia. However, a heterosexual couple with a young child verbally assaulted the loving couple calling them pedophiles. The heterosexual couple claimed that their love would corrupt their child and make him gay. The couple was cited for indecent exposure for their loving affection so the LGBTQ+ community came out in full support with a kiss-a-thon.

Colombians staged a large-scale kiss-a-thon in response to a homophobic verbal assault.

A gay couple in Centro Comercial Andino was harassed by a heterosexual couple for showing affection in public. Rather than hide in fear, the LGBTQ+ community in Bogotá came out with strength staging a kiss-a-thon to show that expressions of love are normal. After all, why is it okay for a heterosexual couple to kiss and snuggle in public but LGBTQ+ people are made to feel unsafe for doing the same thing?

“We want people to stop satanising and discriminating against the LGBT community,” Esteban Miranda, one of the men harassed, told Euro News. “We are not sick, we are not an aberration, we are citizens who are here to build a better country.”

Miranda and Nicolas Tellez were at the shopping mall when they were confronted by parents claiming they were being inappropriate.

Credit: _ian_miranda / Instagram

The couple denied that they were doing anything inappropriate. They claim that the heterosexual couples were uncomfortable with the two men holding hands and hugging like all other couples in the mall.

The couple called the police hoping to receive protection from the irate couple. Instead, when police arrived, the couple was fined for indecent exposure. However, bystanders recorded the couple hurling hateful, homophobic language at the couple and the videos have gone viral internationally.

The LGBTQ+ community and their allies showed Andino shoppers just what love looks like with their kiss-a-thon.

Credit: yosoycamiladiaz / Instagram

Colombia has long been regarded as a Latin American country that is quite liberal when it comes to the LGBTQ+ community. While they do not allow for same-sex marriage, a same-sex couple can join in civil unions (not marriage) and adopt children. However, a recent report shows that Colombia has made no progress in stemming the number of LGBTQ+ murders in the country.

Protesters want Colombian society to embrace the LGBTQ+ community and stop demonizing normal expressions of love.

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“Kissing someone is no crime,” protester Paola Gutierrez told The Washington Post. “All we want is for there to be less divisions in this society, and no discrimination against people over their sexual preferences.”

Some experts claim that the Colombian population is still hostile towards the LGBTQ+ community.

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According to The Washington Post, homosexuality is still viewed rather negatively by the Colombian population. This negative sentiment to the LGBTQ+ community has led to several instances of hate and discrimination targeting the community. In the case of the mall harassment, the police immediately sided with the heterosexual couple issuing the gay couple a citation for indecent exposure.

It is 2019 and LGBTQ+ communities across the globe are pushing back on these instances of intolerance.

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“Mr. Pedro Costa: Love is not a bad example for our children. Your ignorance and your discrimination against human rights is. #YesToLove #FuriousGays”

The LGBTQ+ community in Bogotá sent a clear message to the bullies in the City of Gold. The message is one of love, strength, and a determination to stand up against all forms of discrimination against the LGBTQ+ community.

READ: Here’s How Brazil’s New President Went After LGBTQ People And Minorities His First Week In Office

A Latina Valedictorian Is Being Told She Will Have To Share The Stage

Things That Matter

A Latina Valedictorian Is Being Told She Will Have To Share The Stage

In what sounds like a horrible teen movie nightmare, Natalie Ramos is fighting to rightfully enjoy her moment as valedictorian. Instead of giving her speech to the class, officials at Jesse Bethel High School in Vallejo, California was the first-ever Latina valedictorian to share the stage so the top 10 graduates can speak, according to a Facebook post by her mom.

Ivette Ramos is calling attention to her daughter’s fight to enjoy her moment as her school’s rightful valedictorian.

“My daughter Natalie is ranked #1 in her class with a 4.27 GPA. She was told by her counselor that she would be the Latina Valedictorian at Jesse Bethel High school and it seems like the Principal has a problem with that,” wrote Ivette. “Principal Cusi wants her to share the spot with 9 other students. This has never been don before at Jesse Bethel, why now? The moment a Latina becomes Valedictorian is seems to be a problem.”

Natalie’s sister then took to Twitter to help it go even further on social media.

Credit: @aliyaamarii / Twitter

Natalie is going to be attending UC Berkeley in the fall, according to her sister’s tweet. And her call to action mobilized Twitter, as most good tweets do, and people started to call the principal.

People are clogging the phone lines to let the principal know that they are not here for this kind of demotion.

According to the sister and mother, Natalie’s achievements are being grossly under represented by the school and principal. The title of valedictorian is not something that is easy to achieve so it is extra for those who worked so hard to make that happen. That why the Ramos family is letting everyone know what is happening to their loved one and the work she poured into her time at Jesse Bethel High School.

Unfortunately, it appears that after the news of Natalie’s school blocking her from being the sole valedictorian went viral, Natalie’s grades are being lowered.

Credit: @_gzellee / Twitter

Allegedly, the timing of the story going viral and Natalie being demoted in her GPA and ranking is causing more anger. Not only does she now have a lower GPA, the text, allegedly from Ivette, states that Natalie’s ranking is being downgraded so she is no longer number one.

People are not about to let this go, either.

Credit: @Jessicad488 / Twitter

It seems like Natalie’s family is making sure that everything is properly documented so they have a strong case. Tbh, everyone is cheering for Natalie to get the treatment she deserves and to be the only one on the stage delivering her graduation speech.

People are standing behind Natalie no matter what.

Credit: @AavynB / Twitter

Honestly, the outpouring of support from strangers to make a sure a graduating senior gets the love and respect she deserves is incredible. This is what humanity is all about. Social media is a powerful tool when used for good and this is using it for good.

We are all anxious to see how the story ends.

Credit: @r_aapril / Twitter

Keep posted to mitú and we will let you know how this ends.

READ: A Mexican Teenager Just Became The First Minor In 100 Years To Be Accepted Into A Post-Graduate Program At Harvard

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