Parsippany, New Jersey high schooler Jacob Rudolph accepted his senior class award for “Best Actor” this week when he came out to an audience of over 300 of his fellow students.
They gave him a standing ovation.
Are you weeping yet? Rudolph’s father, Jon, was so proud that he videotaped the speech and posted it on YouTube and Facebook, saying his son’s actions took “more guts” than anything he had done in his whole life.
It’s okay, people, let it out. It’s the good kind of cry this time.
RUDOLPH: Sure I’ve been in a few plays and musicals, but more importantly, I’ve been acting every single day of my life. You see, I’ve been acting as someone I’m not. Most of you see me every day. You see me acting the part of ‘straight’ Jacob, when I am in fact an LGBT teen. [...]
Unlike millions of other LGBT teens who have had to act every day to avoid verbal harassment and physical violence, I’m not going to do it anymore. It’s time to end the hate in our society and accept the people for who they are regardless of their sex, race, orientation, or whatever else may be holding back love and friendship.So take me, leave me, or move me out of the way. Because I am what I am, and that’s how I’m going to act from now on.
(Rudolph later explained that he came out as “LGBT” because he’s still figuring out his sexuality.)