Catholic school students in Washington State protested after two teachers were allegedly fired for being gay. According to NBC’s K5News, two teachers from Kennedy Catholic High School in Burien, Washington, named Paul Danforth and Michelle Beattie, “voluntarily resigned” last week. The school’s faculty, staff, students, and families were then alerted of this through a statement from school officials. But according to Sean Nyberg, Danforth’s fiancé, Danforth “is no longer employed specifically because he and I got engaged.”
In response to this incident, students staged a sit-in, walkout, and rally on Tuesday. The rally began with a prayer before students used a microphone to voice their support of the teachers and displeasure with leadership and the Archdiocese of Seattle. Many protestors also held signs with pictures of the teachers or messages like “God is Love” or “Preach Love.”
Nyberg showed up to the protest to show his support and solidarity. He briefly spoke to the students and said, “Ms. Beattie and Mr. Danforth love you and they miss you and they see you.”
“I’m also part of the LGBT community and I felt like it’s unfair for teachers to lose their jobs over something so simple as loving someone,” said student Meagan Cook to K5 News.
“It’s honestly, religion or not, it’s not fair to treat people unjustly and make them lose their jobs,” she continued.
But this wasn’t the only protest to happen in response to the thinly-veiled faculty firing. State citizens also protested outside the Archdiocese of Seattle to support the teachers and students. Though, there were also counter-protesters who showed up in support of religious freedom as well.