Ian Pratt, junior and member of the LGBTQ+ community at Truman spoke out at the Dump Trump rally put on by Students for a Democratic Society today at 12 p.m on the quad. People in the crowd were encouraged to stand in front of the group and voice their concerns. Shortly after the open mic session the protesters participated in a march where they walked through Truman’s campus, including Violet Hall and Ophelia Parish Hall. Pratt became choked up with emotions while giving his speech on LGBTQ+ rights and the fear that Donald Trump might infringe upon those rights as president.
“Once I got up there it was a lot of feelings,” Pratt says. “I think it was mostly anger that was about to turn into tears, but also a lot of happiness because I was not expecting all these people to be here. I couldn’t believe this morning when I found out [Trump won the election.]”
Pratt says he fears for the way Trump will treat women and members of the LGBTQ+ community.
“I’m trans,” Pratt says. “I’ve had people dislike me from my old town. They are disgusted by me. And then my sister, she’s this amazing human being who supports me completely, but she’s super cute and people do sexually harass her and every time it happens she doesn’t go to anybody about it. These men think they can get away with it and it’s awful. When I found out Donald Trump was getting elected I was like ‘oh my god, there’s no one there to help women.’ There’s no more voice.”
Pratt says while he is disappointed in the election results, he has found hope in today’s rally with people coming together to express their concerns about Trump winning the presidency.
“I think this little rally is a good start,” Pratt says. ” All my friends are speaking and crying and it’s intense. The fact that we can come together on a lawn at a college is just really great.”