Hiding “in the shadows” is what Washington, D.C. area high school principal Pete Cahall said he’s been doing for the last half-centruy. Today, the leader of Woodrow Wilson High School hid no more as he made the announcement that he is gay during today’s Pride Day lunch assembly.
WWHS has hosted the now second-annual day to offer support to homosexual students and communities members. Largely, the event is held to the bring more awareness and appreciation to students’ LGBTQ peers and fellow city men.
Cahall, alongside D.C. mayor Vincent Gray, was treated to thunderous applause by a large crowd of students and community leaders who attended the festival last year after his announcement, which was expected by nobody. He mentioned during the first Pride Day, he felt a pressure to say something but never did. Wednesday’s event meant the timing was right. Cahall said standing in silence would equate him as a “hypocrite.”
Despite the joyous occasion in D.C.’s NW quadrant today, next Monday may be one of sheer protest. Westboro Baptist Church — the midwest led brigade infamous for it’s anti-gay flair at military funerals and other high-profile events — is planning a protest at the school among other D.C.-area locations friendly to homosexuals (including the Supreme Court). Some 1,000 students will meet them on school grounds in a peaceful protest supporting gay rights.
Gray said of the Westboro protestors, “In my best Biblical reference, they can go straight to hell.”