Carlsbad community members show LGBTQ+ solidarity at Rally of Love


Cece Turk

LGBTQ+ members and allies emphasized equality at the Rally of Love on May 22.

Cece Turk, Editor in Chief

On May 22, LGBTQ+ members and allies gathered in front of the Carlsbad Unified School District office sporting pride gear and waving handmade signs. The Rally of Love took place days after CHS Assistant Principal Ethan Williams spoke at the Mission Church’s Stand for Truth Meeting, calling for “no sexual identity or gender ideology curriculum, groups, or celebrations on public school campuses.” 

Protesters voiced their frustration with the assistant principal’s statement, holding posters like “If only closed minds came with closed mouths,” “Teach love, not ignorance” and “Terminate Ethan Williams.” Sage Creek senior and Gender Sexuality Alliance (GSA) member Ana Ambrose reflected on Williams’s presentation.

“Seeing that we’re allowing people in power to say stuff like this and go out and spread this harmful message is appalling,” Ambrose said. 

During the May 19 Stand for Truth Meeting, Williams encouraged his audience to scrutinize CUSD’s proposed Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging (DEIB) Strategic Plan at the upcoming Listening and Learning Sessions that will be held at three Carlsbad elementry schools this Tuesday. The DEIB Plan aims to foster accepting environments throughout the district, limit bullying, and increase the diverse representation of staff members.

Students, parents, CUSD faculty and other community members rallied to show LGBTQ+ support to passing cars. (Cece Turk)

Williams attributed increasing amounts of openly queer students to a social contagion and claimed that the vast majority of transgender youth would “grow out of this confusion” before adulthood if left to their own “natural progression.” He went on to question the promotion of such “ideologies,” citing high suicide rates of LGBTQ+ individuals. Senior Charlotte Snow condemned this rhetoric.

“Let people be themselves,” Snow said. “This isn’t hurting anybody. The only thing that’s going to hurt people is if this DEI Plan isn’t passed.” 

With increasing limitations on LGBTQ+ rights, like Florida governor Ron DeSantis’s initiative to ban gender-affirming care for minors and his development of the so-called “Don’t Say Gay” Bill, Snow felt called to show her support for the LGBTQ+ community. 

“I just think it’s really important that we protect our LGBTQ rights now more than ever,” Snow said. “With things going on in the news like [in] Florida, I think we need to keep California, California.”

Sage Creek senior Peyton Goddard emphasized the importance of the rally as a GSA member. 

“We want all students to feel safe and supported in our community,” Goddard said. “Right now, that’s kind of under threat with what’s happening in Carlsbad. So, coming here today is like, ‘We’re loud, we’re here, and we’re not going to let this fly.’”

With Pride Month less than two weeks away, sophomore Logan Fenner expressed their determination to be themself, explaining that schools should be safe spaces for all students.

“We exist and we are going to keep existing, no matter who hates us or who tries to bring us down,” Fenner said.