The mood in the LGBTQ lounge of the Oklahoma Memorial Union Nov. 9 was full of anger and disappointment concerning Donald Trump's victory over Hillary Clinton in the presidential election. Many LGBTQ students are worried about how the Trump administration will impact them.
“I am afraid that people who may have hidden will be emboldened to act now. I’m afraid of whatever legislation that this candidate and his vice president can dream up and push towards Congress,” said Mikayla Wormley, a recent anthropology graduate.
The students in the lounge said they do not believe Trump can represent LGBTQ people as president.
“I mean, his running mate openly funds conversion therapy — which, it's kind of obvious that does not work and that it’s not healthy for anyone involved, and I think that pretty much sums it up,” biology freshman Brandon Meeks said.
The students also doubted the sincerity of Trump’s attempts to reach out to the LGBTQ community. Psychology freshman Nathaniel Whistnant said the photo of Trump holding a pride flag with “LGBTs for Trump” written on it was a “weird distress signal to the LGBT community.”
“I’m just genuinely concerned for my safety as a (transgender) guy,” Whistnant said.
Computer engineering freshman Sydney White said Trump's words carry influence, regardless if he means them or not.
“Even if Trump himself is not (homophobic), he is saying things that support it. Just because you don’t mean something doesn’t mean your words don’t matter," White said. "Words are not just something that you can throw around. Especially when you’re in a position of power.”