Ethan: What’s your name?
Alex: Alex Hakes
E: What does LGBTQ mean to you?
A: LGBT means an expression of people. Individuals that have found their own identity. Who live their lives in a certain way, that might not be morally acceptable for others. But these individuals are comfortable with it; they were born like that, there’s no way “to fix it.” LGBTQ pretty much means individuals living their life, being open, and free susceptible to judgement but they don’t really care.
E: Is it hard to find a date?
A: No, kind of, yes. Here in Wayne county the gay community is not really prevalent, especially here at IU East. Being a college student, and not venturing out much is kind of hard to find someone, it’s kind of hard.
E: Does your family know, if so what do they think?
A: They know; my mom is very accepting of it. Coming from a Spanish, or Latino household. Being gay and being Latino weren’t too common. Growing up in Puerto Rico a majority of the population is Catholic, and in Catholicism you can’t be gay and live your life. When I told my mom, I thought she was gonna be pissed, she was going to be mad at me, disappointed. But no, she was completely okay with it. She was just reassuring me that she loved me no matter what I did.
E: Are you religious and how does religion relate to homosexuality to you?
A: Yes, I am very religious, I believe that god is the center of my universe, and everything I do is for him. Primarily with religion and homosexuality, a lot of people see a barrier I guess between the two subjects. But personally, I don’t see anything standing in my way of loving the creator who created me and the entire universe and believing in him.
E: What do people first think of you?
A: People first think of me that, they don’t see me as a gay person. They see me as, they don’t think that I’m gay. They think that I’m, I don’t know. They just don’t think that I’m gay and once I finally tell them they’re like sister-shook. They’re like, “woah, what the fuck”. Once I tell people they’re perfectly okay with it.
E: Is there any advice you’d give for starting LGBTQ teams or really just people…
A: Right, Right, Right. Yeah, just love yourself. I grew up, it was hard for me to find myself and actually love myself and once I did I became a totally different person. I became a lot happier, I became a lot more open with myself and other people, I became someone who everyone could be around, and I would make them laugh just because I’m so much happier because I found my true identity and my true self. For those kids that’s just growing up just know that there’s someone out there that does love you and does accept you and you should do whatever it takes to find them.
E: Do you consider yourself a part of the gay community?
E: Why is that?
A: I don’t have a strong tie with the gay community. In general I would say, not just talking primarily about Wayne County, Richmond, but within Indiana itself. I don’t really, a lot of gay people attend like the pride parades. I don’t really find that interesting to me. I don’t really find that enthralling. I tend to just keep me and my sexuality to myself and within other like if I were to have a partner I would with them obviously. I just keep it under wraps, you know?
E: Who would you consider to be your homosexual role model?
A: My gay role model, okay. Gay role model… Ru Paul, just because he’s so open and loves himself and does everything for the community that’s most possible. [Pauses] Dylan Geick. He is a wrestler from Columbia, very social media present. He is a social media influencer. He is an athlete and being gay. He was completely okay with it. His was very loving for it and I really relate to him because I was an athlete. I played baseball for four years and everyone loved me for it. Once I became gay they really accepted me and I just really relate with him.
E: Anything else you feel you want to add to this?
E: Alright, thank you.
A: Nada mucho.