Ten Year Old Activist Launches Webpage

Earlier this year, a ten-year-old girl from a lesbian family named Sol Kelley-Jones gave testimony at a legislative hearing on a bill prohibiting same sex marriages in Wisconsin. At the time, she had no idea what a difference telling her story would make.

The next morning, Sol's story was the lead in articles on the front page of papers across the state, which also told how hundreds of people from across Wisconsin had come to tell their own stories. In speaking out about their lives, she and her moms brought a human face to the issue of how the proposed legislation (and the hatred that was behind it) would hurt her and other children in lesbian and gay families.

Sol's activism took another form a month later when she conducted a survey of attitudes toward gay men and lesbians at her elementary school. Her survey's results were eventually considered by both the Madison school board and the State Superintendent of Schools.

In July, she was named Madison's "Ally of the Year" this summer at the annual dinner of our LGBT service agency, The United. Sol and her moms, Sunshine Jones and Joann Kelley, also proudly marched at the front of Madison's LGBT Rights and Pride Parade.

Sol's activism, at such an early age, is symbolic of the difference we can make as individuals and families in speaking out about our lives. In recognition of her contributions, we've prepared a special website "scrapbook" for her. It documents her testimony, and the reaction in the news media. It also contains a copy of her school survey, and other information about her and her family. Eventually, we hope to establish links to other resources on the Internet relating to children in gay and lesbian families, gay and lesbian youth, and education issues.

Sol's website can be found at http://www.geocities.com/WestHollywood/Heights/6502 .

You can also find Sol's site using the Yahoo or Alta Vista search engines, by typing in her full name, "Sol Kelley-Jones" (not forgetting the hyphen or the second "e" in Kelley). Please use the e-mail response links to let us know what you think.

In the several weeks since her site has been online, Sol has heard from people from all across the country who've been inspired by her activism. If you subscribe to a relevant mail list, or know of relevant websites or personal homepages where we should establish a link, please let us know by sending e-mail to mymomsandme@geocities.com.

©1997 Oasis Magazine. All Rights Reserved.