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Outfest still fighting for equality, visibility in 2014

Millennials pick up the LGBT equality banner and march into the future.

Three young women take to the streets of the Gayborhood to celebrate Outfest 2014. Credit: Sam Newhouse Three young women take to the streets of the Gayborhood to celebrate Outfest 2014. Credit: Sam Newhouse

Women at the end of the 19th century and into the 20th pushed for women's rights. African-Americans pushed for equal rights in the middle of the 20th century.

And in the second decade of the 21st century, Morgan Gottel wants the world to know that she likes girls.

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"We're still humans," Gottel said. "Why does it matter if you get married and I don't?"

The 22-year-old West Chester University student, in town for Outfest 2014, said she wants her generation to remedy what she sees as the problem.

"I think the problem is we're still stuck in the 1950s lifestyle where the man is the breadwinner and the woman is the homemaker," she said, "and we don't necessary want to accept an alternative lifestyle."

Tens of thousands celebrated their alternative lifestyles at Outfest 2014 on Sunday in Center City. This the first Outfest since the Defense of Marriage Act was struck down in Pennsylvania over the summer.

When asked what took the movement so long, Jessica Ford, 19, said: "It's pretty invisible. You can tell someone is a woman. You can tell when someone is black. But you can't tell when someone is LGBT."

Gottel questioned whether the country's Christian heritage also hampered social progress.

"I'm Lutheran," she said. "And I still have a very tight relationship with God. I may not go to church every Sunday. ... But I talk to him every night."

"And why would he create me if he wanted to destroy me?" she said. "It makes no sense. I'm Christian, I'm gay, I'm happy."

Follow Tommy Rowan on Twitter: @tommyrowan

 
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