Josh Mers is the former Chairman of Fairness Lexington, a group that fights for LGBTQ dignity and equality throughout central Kentucky. While he has seen the immense progress made in Lexington to ensure LGBTQ people are treated fairly, in August 2018 he was reminded that there is still a long way to go. A friend of Mers had his car defaced in broad daylight outside of their home. The side of the car was keyed, spelling out “HIV +” and another anti-gay slur. Mers knows how important it is that the work towards equality continues until every LGBTQ person in Kentucky feels safe and protected by their communities.
“Communities within Lexington have experienced this kind of discrimination before, and every time, our community does bounce back,” Mers said. “We stand a little taller than that. To use the old adage when they go low, we go high. We’ve done a really good job of trying to tell the rest of the state and the rest of the world that Lexington is this welcoming, open place that not only celebrates, but honors the diversity that makes us such a great community.”