Hi, I'm Oliver.
I came out publicly as a transgender male when I was 15. Since then, I’ve been living my life as the person I really am – Oliver – a normal teenage boy in South Dakota. I work at the library, I’m involved with theater, and I like to hang out with my friends. Recently, I also graduated from Yankton High School.
But this year, I did something I never thought I would. I testified in front of the state legislature about House Bill 1108, legislation that would have codified discrimination against transgender youth. Thankfully, this bill – and the three other discriminatory transgender bills proposed by lawmakers this year – didn’t pass.
Like many of you, I’ll be celebrating these legislative victories at Pride festivals across the state. I really can’t wait to be part of the fun!
But celebrating LGBTQ culture and diversity in South Dakota reminds me that there is still work to do – especially with some lawmakers promising additional discriminatory LGBTQ bills ahead.
The ACLU of South Dakota has made your act to keep ahead of the legislative session really easy. Just use this handy form and make your message personal. If I can travel to Pierre to testify during the session (during a snowstorm in February, no less), surely you can click on a link and send an email! Be sure to share the link with your friends, too.
As an ACLU of South Dakota supporter, I’m sure you’ve heard about the importance of contacting your elected officials. That’s important year-round – even when our legislators aren’t in Pierre.
It’s important that we tell them that we don’t want to see any discriminatory LGBTQ bills in 2020.
Happy Pride everyone!