A Florida student turned state's controversial new law into a viral lesson on the Stonewall riots

Stonewall Inn, West Village.

One thing that screams amazing is Gen Z kids and the empowerment they exude. Whether it’s organizing protests or demanding to be taken seriously as their true selves, they can be truly awe-inspiring. Teens in the '90s perfected the eye roll and developed a “Clueless” croak, but teens and young adults of today seem to be activists from birth. Bucking the system that attempts to put them in a box or quiet their voices, today’s youth are in a league of their own, and it’s something to take in.

Will Larkins is one of those precocious Gen Zers that is breaking the mold on what society deems appropriate for teens to do. He's a junior at Winter Park High School in Winter Park, Florida, and has been making his presence known through his LGBTQ+ activism. He is the president and co-founder of his school’s Queer Student Union. On March 7, he led a walkout of more than 500 students in protest of Florida's proposed "Don't Say Gay" bill. Larkins, who uses they/him pronouns, posted a video to his Twitter account showing him teaching a history lesson on the Stonewall riots, which occurred in 1969. His history class was covering history spanning the 1960s and '70s, and he asked permission to include this bit of LGBTQ+ history that many people don’t learn about in school.


After his history teacher gave him the go-ahead, Larkins got to work. The teen created a PowerPoint presentation that centered around educating his fellow students about the history of LGBTQ+ and the fight for civil rights. When he arrived to class that day, he donned a red tea-length fitted dress, a fur cropped jacket and a beautiful double strand of pearls. The students in class appear to be engaged in his presentation on the historic events.

The Stonewall riots were a series of uprisings in New York City following a raid on a local gay bar that resulted in a lesbian being knocked unconscious as she was being put into a police car. The onlookers were horrified and began to throw things at the officer who had injured the woman as he was putting her into the police car. When Larkins asked his teacher if the class would be covering Stonewall during their lesson, his teacher had not heard of the event, which prompted the presentation.

After Larkins posted a short clip of him presenting on the riots, some commenters were confused at why he decided to wear a dress, but the answer was simple. Because he wanted to. Larkins often dresses in clothes that would be deemed feminine by societal standards, but he doesn’t let that stop him. The presentation went viral, and has been viewed more than 457, 000 times.

While Larkins may still be in high school, his activism and courage to stand up for what he believes in will take him far. He's already looking toward the future by helping eligible Gen Zers register to vote in time for the primaries. This kid is going places, and he’ll look fabulous doing it.

Moricz was banned from speaking up about LGBTQ topics. He found a brilliant workaround.

Senior class president Zander Moricz was given a fair warning: If he used his graduation speech to criticize the “Don’t Say Gay” law, then his microphone would be shut off immediately.

Moricz had been receiving a lot of attention for his LGBTQ activism prior to the ceremony. Moricz, an openly gay student at Pine View School for the Gifted in Florida, also organized student walkouts in protest and is the youngest public plaintiff in the state suing over the law formally known as the Parental Rights in Education law, which prohibits the discussion of sexual orientation or gender identity in grades K-3.

Though well beyond third grade, Moricz nevertheless was also banned from speaking up about the law, gender or sexuality. The 18-year-old tweeted, “I am the first openly-gay Class President in my school’s history–this censorship seems to show that they want me to be the last.”

However, during his speech, Moricz still delivered a powerful message about identity. Even if he did have to use a clever metaphor to do it.

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Matthew McConaughey in 2019.

Oscar-winning actor Matthew McConaughey made a heartfelt plea for Americans to “do better” on Tuesday after a gunman murdered 19 children and 2 adults at Robb Elementary School in his hometown of Uvalde, Texas.

Uvalde is a small town of about 16,000 residents approximately 85 miles west of San Antonio. The actor grew up in Uvalde until he was 11 years old when his family moved to Longview, 430 miles away.

The suspected murderer, 18-year-old Salvador Ramos, was killed by law enforcement at the scene of the crime. Before the rampage, Ramos allegedly shot his grandmother after a disagreement.

“As you all are aware there was another mass shooting today, this time in my home town of Uvalde, Texas,” McConaughey wrote in a statement shared on Twitter. “Once again, we have tragically proven that we are failing to be responsible for the rights our freedoms grant us.”

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Meet Eva, the hero dog who risked her life saving her owner from a mountain lion

Wilson had been walking down a path with Eva when a mountain lion suddenly appeared.

Photo by Didssph on Unsplash

A sweet face and fierce loyalty: Belgian Malinois defends owner.

The Belgian Malinois is a special breed of dog. It's highly intelligent, extremely athletic and needs a ton of interaction. While these attributes make the Belgian Malinois the perfect dog for police and military work, they can be a bit of a handful as a typical pet.

As Belgian Malinois owner Erin Wilson jokingly told NPR, they’re basically "a German shepherd on steroids or crack or cocaine.”

It was her Malinois Eva’s natural drive, however, that ended up saving Wilson’s life.

According to a news release from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, Wilson had been walking down a path with Eva slightly ahead of her when a mountain lion suddenly appeared and swiped Wilson across the left shoulder. She quickly yelled Eva’s name and the dog’s instincts kicked in immediately. Eva rushed in to defend her owner.

It wasn’t long, though, before the mountain lion won the upper hand, much to Wilson’s horror.

She told TODAY, “They fought for a couple seconds, and then I heard her start crying. That’s when the cat latched on to her skull.”

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