Lawmakers join fight to end bullying against LGBT teens

Lawmakers join fight to end bullying against LGBT teens

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Texas lawmakers join in the fight to end bullying against teens in the LGBT community. Texas legislators deliver a powerful video message for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered teens.

"Our LGBT community ought to be treated with respect and dignity," said Senator Juan Hinojosa, (D) District 20.

The video is the latest addition to the It Gets Better Project. The purpose is to inspire and uplift those who are being bullied just as they are finding themselves.

Watch the full video here: http://www.itgetsbetter.org/video/entry/W10YWjiQByo

State Representative Mary Gonzalez knows what that feels like.

"As the first out LGBT woman in the Texas state legislature, this message is really important to me," she said.

Gonzalez identifies herself as a pansexual.

She came out at age 21, but says her biggest struggle came years later after she won the election for House District 75 in El Paso County.

"People across the state, country and even the world would send me emails, everything from you should be raped to you are disgusting and it was for a whole week. I couldn't leave my house because it was so negative," Gonzalez said.

It got better when she made the choice to focus on the positive feedback she received.

"I want people to see the video and say maybe I can be an elected official. If Mary Gonzalez did it, I can do it," said Gonzalez.

Senator Royce West faced challenges in his younger years.

"As a paperboy back in the 5th, 6th grade, I was bullied. There were people who would stand around and laugh about it, turn a blind eye, and ear to what was going on," said West.

That's why he chose to lend his voice to the project as well.

"If you continue to have problems with bullying, I'm the big guy that has your back, just send me a note about the bully," West said.

"All of us that recognize, we've had friends, or loved ones that have been the victim of being picked on or bullied need to make sure we stand up not turn a blind eye to what is going on."

"We have to be the agents of change to make it better and that's what gives us the empowerment and the positivity of it getting better," Gonzalez said.

"Know that there are people who love you and people who believe in you," said Senator Leticia Van de Putte, (D) Bexar County.

"It gets better," said Senator Kirk Watson, (D) Travis County.

If you or someone you love in the LGBT community is struggling with bullying, call the Trevor crisis intervention hotline at 1-866-488-7386.

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