LGBT Republicans are the Minority of a Minority

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It is no secret that politics have been a hot button issue in the past few months. Tensions have continuously been growing the closer that we get to the election, and while it is exciting to see younger people getting involved in politics it can also be stressful for those who do not agree with mainstream groups.

Blaize Hart, a freshman studying film, will have the opportunity to vote for the next President of the United States in the 2016 election. Like all voters, Blaize had to take time to figure out which candidate’s views align with his views.

Blaize has chosen to support the Republican nominee, Donald J. Trump, and that’s getting him into a lot of hot water both online and around campus.

“I’ve had people friend me on Facebook and immediately, within 5 minutes, comment on everything and start using exclamation points and screaming at me. Like, all-caps, ‘ARE YOU CRAZY? What are you thinking?? You have no empathy.’ And I’m just like… you don’t know who I am,” Hart said. “Just because I have this one opinion, it’s an opinion, first of all I’m not stating it as fact. I’m stating it as an opinion.”

In one week alone, Blaize said he received three messages on Twitter that were from complete strangers who were attacking him for his beliefs. Hart said he is willing to have intelligent discussions over the election but finds that people are not willing to do the same.

Blaize is not the only voter who is feels that people are more vocal on social media rather than in person. A Pew Research Center poll published in October 2016 found that 40% of people surveyed think “social media are places where people say things while discussing politics that they would never say in person.”

All the drama has caused Blaize to cut down on the amount of political views that he shares on his social media platforms to help eliminate the backlash– some of which he receives from fellow members of the LGBT community.

“They often call me not a real member of the LGBT community. They kind of discredit me as a person, which I think is ridiculous. If you have a different opinion, I completely respect it,” Hart said, admitting that the lack of acceptance from the LGBT community does bother him at times.

“I think there are different groups within this community. I am gay. I’m don’t identify as queer, I’m not transgender, and so I think just because I am a part of one aspect of this community, I don’t necessarily have the viewpoint of everyone else in the community because we’re very diverse,” Hart said.

The lack of support for Mr. Trump all across the LGBT community is not all that uncommon. A recent study by the Pew Research Center found that majority of LGBT voters support Clinton to Trump, and even among conservative LGBT voters there has been a lack of support.

The Log Cabin Republicans, the nation’s largest conservative LGBT organization, has chosen not to endorse Mr. Trump and released a statement:

“As Mr. Trump spoke positively about the LGBT community in the United States, he concurrently surrounded himself with senior advisors with a record of opposing LGBT equality, and committed himself to supporting legislation such as the so-called “First Amendment Defense Act” that Log Cabin Republicans opposes.”

This is the first time since 1992 that the organization has chosen not to endorse the Republican nominee.

Hart feels that the most important issue this election season is National security, particularly with regards to the Middle East. He does not agree with all of Trump’s views on the topic, but he finds that they are the nearest to his own perspective.

“Islam does have peaceful aspects to it, but it does have violent aspects to it, and the majority of Muslims don’t adhere to the violent aspects of it,” Hart said. “But we do have the minority in that group who, you know, push homosexuals off the top of roofs to their deaths and stone women to death just because they show their ankles or something ridiculous. So I do have concerns in that aspect, being a part of that community.”

This fear was brought to life over the summer in Orlando, FL, when Omar Mateen, who had pledged allegiance to Isis, killed 49 individuals during his rampage at Pulse, a traditionally gay night club.

The United Nations brought up the issue of LGBT percussion by Isis earlier this year when the assembly listened to the stories of gay men who fled their country out of fear that they would be murdered for breaking sodomy laws.

The Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission reported that at least 30 LGBT people have been killed by Isis because of their sexuality.

Despite the backlash he has faced for standing out, Blaize chooses to stick his own beliefs, no matter what any of the candidates say.

“Obviously I don’t agree with 100% of the things he says just because I’m voting for him doesn’t mean I am him, that doesn’t make any sense.” Hart said.