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Candlelight Vigil Against Hate

Students, staff and faculty gathered on Cannan Green the evening of Oct. 28 for 8 Minutes to Stop the Hate, a candlelight vigil to honor the memories of Tyler Clementi, Seth Walsh, Asher Brown, Billy Lucas and Justin Aaberg. The suicides of these youths, who took their own lives reportedly because of bullying and harassment over their sexual orientation, have made national headlines. Attendees heard brief remarks by Josh Bareno ’13, president of the event’s sponsor, the W&L GLBT Equality Initiative (G.E.I), before lighting candles and observing eight minutes of silence.

Formerly known as the Gay-Straight Alliance, G.E.I promotes equal rights, justice and opportunity for all members of the W&L community, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity. This fall, G.E.I. has co-sponsored (along with the W&L Office of Diversity and Inclusion) a talk on campus by Brian Sims, an attorney and the only openly gay football captain in NCAA history. It also promoted National Coming Out Week from Oct. 10–17.