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Stop Doubting The Importance of ‘Love, Simon’ to LGBTQ+ Youth

Love, Simon starring Nick Robinson is anything but “just another gay movie.”

In theaters everywhere March 16th, the blockbuster follows closeted gay high schooler Simon Spier who has fallen in love with an anonymous classmate online. The movie tackles many experiences of the average queer teen, from coming out to parents, dealing with isolation, and wondering why heterosexual has always been society’s default. But instead of painting a gloomy picture of a gay teen’s life, Simon’s journey is filled with romance, humor, and heart. A lot of heart.

Love, Simon is a fresh, cheery addition to the fairly short list of LGBTQ+ blockbusters. A positive rom-com centered around a gay high schooler, starring well-known faces like Jennifer Garner and Josh Duhamel, is not something you see in theaters every day. Or ever. Yet the pessimism and doubt are still present (often from adults who don’t have a single clue what it’s like to be a gay teen).

Of course, we do. And the rest of Twitter agrees:

The argument that LGBTQ+ kids do not need Love, Simon has been harmoniously and aggressively refuted by the entire community. Frankly, it is absurd to claim this is an unnecessary production just because “times have changed” (the nation’s views on queer rights haven’t changed as much as we all think).

The film’s motto “Everyone deserves a great love story” speaks to all LGBTQ+ youth who are closeted — from small towns to big cities — who may not have the opportunity to see themselves represented often. Especially not as a protagonist in a highly publicized movie like this.

We need Love, Simon. We need the authentic story of a gay boy who isn’t going to play into every stereotype on the big screen.

We need familiar faces to play the characters of a journey millions of teens go through every day. We need a romantic comedy for us, just like the ones straight teens get twice a month. We need light-heartedness in our media, not always just tragic and gloomy films.

And even if we didn’t need our representation to take center stage for once, we deserve to have a great love story just like everyone else.

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Written by Catherine Horkay

Cat is a 5'0 senior in high school with dreams that reside much higher than her height. Her passions include academia, berry smoothies, and LGBTQ+ rights. (IG/TWIT: @catnipscarlet)