“I was standing in the cashier line at the grocery store. I wore my Portland Trail Blazers Pride sweatshirt today to work. It’s one of my favorite articles of clothing.
An older gentleman, standing right behind me, decided to say, ‘Why are you wearing that rainbow shirt? Are you some sort of fa***t?’
I said, ‘Well sir, I am a gay man, yes. And I wear this to show people that I am not only proud of myself and my community, but also the organization I work for, who supports Diversity, Equality and Inclusion.’
He then proceeded to say, ‘Have fun in hell, homo. Hope you’re proud of the choice you decided to make.’
This man then goes on to mumble homophobic slurs to me, the whole time I’m waiting in line. I ignore him, pay for my food, and start to walk away. I then notice his card gets declined. He keeps trying and trying and he isn’t able to pay for his food. I walk up to the cash register and pay for his 3 items.
He looks at me and goes, ‘Why would you do that?’
I said, ‘Well sir, unlike my sexuality, which is not a choice… I’m choosing to be a nice person. I hope you find it in your heart to understand your words can be hurtful, but I’m choosing to see you for the person you are, and I wanted to help you.’
He said nothing, and I walked away. Take the high road people. Be the better person and show people that hate is never the answer. Be brave, stand up, and kill them with kindness.”