The Bastards Couldn’t Keep Him Down 

Shame, Florida. Shame.

As Zander Moricz was preparing a speech for his high school graduation, he was instructed on things he couldn’t say. Moricz is currently the youngest plaintiff in a suit against Florida’s new law restricting what teachers can say about sexual orientation and gender, commonly known as the “Don’t Say Gay” law. He’s also openly gay himself. His principal warned him not to mention any of that, stating that his microphone would be cut off if he did.

That’s a sad reflection of life in the Sunshine State, and it’s utterly shameful. Fortunately, the 18-year-old rose above it beautifully:

“I used to hate my curls,” he said, after removing his graduation cap and running his hands through his hair.

“I spent morning and night embarrassed of them trying to straighten this part of who I am, but the daily damage of trying to fix myself became too much to endure,” he said. “So while having curly hair in Florida is difficulty due to the humidity, I decided to be proud of who I was and started coming to school as my authentic self.”

It never should’ve been necessary, but thanks to this simple and brilliant metaphor, Moricz’s speech has spread far more than it otherwise would have. Bravo, Zander. Don’t let up.