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Trevor Thomas hits back at the homophobia of the Michigan GOPers

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Last week, I wrote a post about the legislative gay-bashing from Michigan State Representative Dave Agema. The guy is so homophobic that he's willing to punish colleges and drive talent out of economically plagued Michigan. It's despicable and destructive.

A short time after I wrote the post, I got a call from my friend, Trevor Thomas, who was outraged. Agema represents his district back in Michigan -- and Trevor is a proud grad of the Michigan university system. (Trevor works at Equality Matters now. Last year, he was the communications director for SLDN. Besides being an amazing strategist, he is one of the most decent, upstanding people I've ever met.)

Today, Trevor has an op-ed on the subject in his hometown paper, the Grand Rapids Press:

I was 19 years old when I came out. It was 2004. I had driven from my campus apartment at Grand Valley State to my parents’ house in Marne in the same Chevy Camaro I had once contemplated running into a tree. The altar-boy at St. Mary’s Catholic Church (third grade through sophomore year) knew that homosexuality was a sin, but suicide was, too.

Mom sat on the couch and Dad on the love seat. I debated if I should use the word "gay" -- which I despised for its stigma -- or "homosexual."

I went with gay. Mom pulled my college funding.

Fast forward seven years later, it's not all that much different today with Dave Agema, my hometown representative, trying to pull funding from public universities across the state. Agema's recent amendment to an education budget bill will penalize our state schools and universities five percent if they offer any kind of financial assistance to lesbian and gay couples.

This is homophobia in action and it is hurting our kids and our state. Michigan's unemployment rate continues to rank worst in the nation. Thousands have lost their jobs and their pensions cut (including members of my own family), and anyone with a job is in fear of being the next on the chopping block. And we've been steadily losing population since 2006, according to the 2010 census report.
Read Trevor's op-ed. He's a beautiful writer -- and is a much better voice for Michigan than the hater Dave Agema.

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