Mar 16 2010

Virginia 1  Spring Break may be ending at many Virginia colleges but the campaign against the recent actions by Attorney General Cuccinelli (photograph) is just beginning. Virginia's leading law enforcement officer has demanded that Virginia institutions of higher learning immediately repeal all protections for LGBT students and professors. This effort comes on the heel of Governor McDowell removing protections for LGBT state employees. The governor has now issued a directive but it has no legal standing and refuses to reinstate the original order.

But the university students in that state are not having it.

The protests against these actions are growing rapidly. A campaign begun by University of Mary Washington Student Eric Steigleder has now enrolled over 12,000 others from schools throughout the state. The indefatigable Eric, on his own campus, collected 1,200 signatures of students and professors in just two days. As students return from Spring Break, those numbers are expected to dramatically climb higher.

Facebook pages to oppose this effort are collecting an amazing number of students signing up to protest Cuccinelli. Just look at some of the numbers;

University of Virginia 2,100 students
William and Mary 2,100 students
Virginia Commonwealth University 2,300 students
Virginia Tech 1,600 students
University of Mary Washington 1000 students

Casey Allen Sears is leading the student effort at William and Mary. He has been receiving death threats for his work and with assistance from Get Equal, police have been brought in to investigate them. Casey has not lost his sense of humor and you must watch the video at the end. You can send letters of support to Casey at casey.allen.sears@gmail.com . Let him know how much we love his courage and bravery.

On March 23rd, the attorney general is speaking at George Mason University School of Law in Arlington, Virginia. The student organizers are asking all that are able in the Virginia and Washington DC area come and join them. The key organizer for the event is Cathryn Oakley and she can be reached at cathryn.oakley@gmail.com . David Fleck and Robin McGeeHee of Get Equal are working around the clock to help in any way they can. David is on the case every day; Robin is meeting with a coalition of students this week. Demonstrations are set for March 18th at William and Mary and for April 1st at Longwood University.

The attorney general, by the way, has once again made clear that his original letter stands according to Towleroad.com.

Support the Students of Virginia!