A group of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) students from the Illinois Safe Schools Alliance have produced an emotional new video in which they speak at length about the issues facing the current community in a unique way: by "addressing" their 40-year-old selves.
"You went to a school that wasn't used to people like you, wasn't used to change...wasn't used to people being different," one student states. Another plaintively notes: "Freshman year, after your stepdad beat the crap out of you, all your mom told you was, 'I know you're a faggot.'"
Still, others are more optimistic, ensuring their future selves that it did, in fact, get better. "I know it's crazy now, but back then, things were different...people just didn't understand. I guess that's when the journey began," one remarks.
The Chicago-based Alliance "envisions a world in which youth develop to their fullest potential, learning in safe and nurturing schools, living in communities that accept and honor differences, where everyone has the freedom to express their sexual orientation and gender identity," according to its website.
Take a look at other viral LGBT-relevant videos below:
Danny Rose set a new precedent for gay grooms-to-be with his amazing proposal video. Titled "What Are We Waiting For," the video features a dance-pop soundtrack and "Glee"-style choreography, along with a number of slick costume changes to boot. "I started writing the song in December and took me a month to complete," said Rose. "Then I prepped the music video for a few weeks and shot it all in one day...After the video I got down on one knee and asked him to make me the happiest person in the world and spend his life with me! He said of course and it was a great moment. But wanted to watch the video again 30 more times. There are a lot of inside jokes and even some wardrobe choices in there designed to experiences in our history."
Although Tebow filmed a Superbowl commercial in 2010 for the anti-gay, anti-abortion organization Focus On The Family (FOTF), he seemed to have no problem sharing a male-on-male lip-lock with Demaryius Thomas in front of thousands (millions?) of onlookers in October.
Penned by "Wicked" Stephen Schwartz, "Testimony" has become an Internet hit, thanks to a video performance by the San Francisco Gay Men's Chorus (SFGMC) which has gone viral. The song has been dubbed the "It Gets Better" anthem.
An eighth grader's hilarious public service announcement on the misuse of the word "gay" made the rounds of the LGBT blogosphere and beyond in November.
Wahls' profound pro-gay parenting, pro-marriage equality speech went viral twice this year. The 19-year-old's moving testimony in front of the Iowa House of Representatives swept Twitter and Facebook in February and in December due to the continuing debates about same-sex marriage and gay parenting in the United States.
It's easy to see why a video of a gay couple being told they're going to be grandparents went viral again over a year after it was originally uploaded to YouTube.
An Australian same-sex marriage advocacy group's sexy, dramatic new campaign had the blogosphere abuzz in late fall. Produced by independent advocacy organization GetUp! Action for Australia, the new ad, simply titled "A Love Story," which depicts two handsome men frolicking on a beach and dealing with family crises before a proposal and the subsequent nuptials.
One gay couple expressed their views on the victory of Spain's Mariano Rajoy and his conservative People's Party by "videobombing" an Al Jazeera reporter, kissing passionately as the hapless correspondent spoke on the election.
A bullied teen's poignant video caught the eye of the blogosphere over three months after it was originally posted. The clip, simply titled "Whats goin on..." [sic] and uploaded to YouTube in August, features eighth grader Jonah Mowry, who addresses the audience with a series of revealing notecards while Sia's "Breathe Me" plays in the background.
In a stinging floor speech, Michigan Senator Gretchen Whitmer expressed her dissatisfaction with "Matt's Safe School Law," which -- at the time -- created a special exception for bullies who have "a sincerely held religious belief or moral conviction," as well as neglecting to protect to bullying against students based on sexual orientation or gender identity.
Hours after the U.S. military repealed "Don't Ask Don't Tell," Randy Phillips, a young American soldier stationed in Germany <a href="http://main.aol.com/2011/09/20/soldier-comes-out-to-father-on-youtube_n_971994.html" target="_hplink">had something to tell his father</a>. "Dad, I'm gay," the soldier uttered into his cellphone. "Always have been and always known forever," he adds.
In early December, Michele Bachmann was left speechless after an awkward encounter with a young activist named Elijah at a South Carolina book signing. The video, however, drew plenty of criticism from some unusual sources.
Produced by staff and students from the University of Liverpool and based on an original idea from the staff's LGBT Network, "Gay is the Word" shows a British fellow attempting to come out to his mates as a gay man, yet failing when his friends don't understand that "gay" also means "homosexual."