Respect My Pronouns

By Patrick Naylis

Toby loves waffles. His nickname is Waffle. “I ate 336 waffles over three days while my dad was in the hospital,” said Toby, explaining how he acquired the nickname. “Chocolate chip are my favorite,” he said with a bright smile. He loves waffles so much, his mom is bringing back a waffle iron from a trip to California.

Toby attends Aurora Central as a freshman. He and his family recently located from Manitou Springs. “I actually like getting up and going to school. I look forward to it. And on occasion I’m early so I can hang out with my friends,” said Toby of his new school.

Toby didn’t always enjoy school. In fact, he found school in Manitou Springs to be a de-valuing experience. “We had to transfer out of the old school because of LGBT bullying,” said Toby.

LGBT stands for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender, and for this group of people, bullying in and out of schools is a big problem. “It’s a problem for all students,” said Erin Yourtz, Colorado One safe schools coordinator. However, according to a study by the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) bullying is the norm for LGBT students in their day-to-day experiences at school.

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