December 13, 2019
Lexie Guzik, though strong and proud in her identity, faces adversity every day after she was the victim of an intemperate hate crime.
Guzik’s “Love Wins” sticker was ripped off her bumper and shoved onto her front window twice, sending a message that they are not accepting of the LGBTQ+ community.
“The first time, I was devastated and it made me feel unsafe to come to school, but the second time I was just mad. Now, whenever I leave school I have to check my sticker, and it makes me anxious to come to school sometimes,” said Guzik.
However, Guzik does not believe members of her community should stand down or feel ashamed because of people who are hateful towards them, they should use that hate as fuel to fight for their equality and raise awareness for people who are not accepted into society.
Being the president of Queer Alliance gives Guzik an opportunity to use her experiences with hate and homophobia to help other students.
“Being able to connect with everyone in Queer Alliance and helping them with their own issues that I may have gone through myself,” said Guzik. “My heart bursts with joy for them to see them learning and being vocal about who they are in a place where they’re safe from having anyone demean them.”
Guzik has not always been as open and proud of her sexuality as she is today. She, much like many other people coming to terms with their sexuality, was once closeted and afraid to express who she was.
“Someone who’s ashamed of who they are is someone who doesn’t have the support they need, which is how I was freshman year. I was alone, I didn’t really have anyone I wanted to talk to or anyone in my corner, but the more people support you, you get that sense of pride and know who you are,” said Guzik.
To feel more accepted by SJHHS, Guzik wishes they would treat members of her community the same way they would anyone else.
“Whether someone is straight or someone is gay, love is love, it’s all the same,” said Guzik.