If we make it acceptable to be gay, we'll encourage more kids to become gay when they grow up.


This statement is based on the assumption that all kids are naturally straight and can become (or choose to be) gay growing up. That is not the case. Depictions of LGBT people in the media do not encourage kids to become gay, but rather normalize such feelings, if already present.

Whenever people talk about “protecting” children from being exposed to LGBT people, rarely does anyone ask themselves: what about the children who are LGBT?

Why depictions of LGBT people in media are important

Think of your first love. Remember how this person seemed so different, how they used to light up every room they walked in, how much you wanted to be close to them?

Now imagine everyone’s telling you it’s wrong to like that person, that you’re sick for liking them. You believe them, because nowhere around you do you see relationships between people like you and them.

If you don’t hide your attraction, you’re worried your parents will take you to a mental health institute, exorcise or give you away. You resolve to living in silence, not approaching those you’re interested in, not discussing your feelings and worries with your friends and family.

And that is what it’s often like growing up gay.

But it doesn’t have to be.

Picture the same scenario but this time, you don’t exist in isolation. You see people like you, people with the kind of relationships you want, all around you; in books, movies, cartoons, at school, in the news. Even if some people call you a freak, you know you’re not. Instead of getting depressed and anxious, you can enjoy your life and build lasting relationships.

The gay rights movement isn’t about promoting some imaginary “gay agenda”. It’s about giving everyone the opportunity to live a fulfilling life with the ones they love.