Students stood up for their gay classmate after the Westboro Baptist Church targeted him.
Jake Bain is a star football player at John Burroughs School. He came out at a school assembly in October, stating, “I will continue to fight for my fellow members of the LGBTQ+ community and be a voice for the voiceless. Hopefully we all can make this world just a little bit better of place.”
In February, the anti-LGBTQ+ Westboro Baptist Church announced plans to protest outside the school, but students counter-protested in support of Bain. The principal said more than 200 students came together to discuss how the school would respond, without having to directly confront the hateful group. According to Bain, roughly 500 people came to counter-protest.
His fellow students have been supportive since he first came out, but he did face harassment from others, explaining, “I would definitely get a lot of people who were calling me f*g on the football field.”
Bain will start playing for Indiana State later in the year. But before he committed to the school, he made sure the coach knew about his sexuality. Now, he is ready to be true to himself at the collegiate level, and continue to stands up for LGBTQ+ rights.