Travis Shumake became the first gay drag race driver in the National Hot Rod Association, and Virginia's governor wants teachers to notify parents if their child is LGBT.

Travis Shumake Becomes First Gay NHRA Driver

In following his father’s footsteps, Travis Shumake is the first gay drag race driver in the National Hot Rod Association.

For the first time, Visit Kansas and Pride Kansas will be sponsoring a racer, USA Today reported.

"His journey and being the first openly gay sanctioned driver really resonated with us," Sean Dixon, the president of Visit Topeka, said to USA Today. "We had this opportunity to marry a new audience to a historic Topeka tourism event that just hasn't seen or had that exposure."

On his race car there is a buffalo painted like the Pride flag, as well as the front of the car resembles the same. Shumake said that his parachute has also been changed to open up into rainbow colors.

"I grew up idolizing female racecar drivers because there was no one in the sport who reminded me of me," Shumake said. "It’s important that at some point, there’s an LGBTQ driver in America’s second-largest motorsport. There are 40 million fans who self-identify as drag racing fans, and there just should be a gay driver.” 

Governor Under Fire for Asking Teachers to Out LGBT Students to Their Parents

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Photo via Glenn Youngkin, Flickr.

Currently, the Virginia Board of Education has policies in place to protect students' privacy. Gov. Glenn Youngkin, however, feels that teachers should notify parents if the child is LGBT. 

“I’m a teacher. I would never out a kid. Ever. My job is to help them thrive,” Del. Schuyler VanValkenburg, a Henrico County Democrat, wrote on Twitter according to The Roanoke Times.

The Roanoke Times interviewed 14-year-old student Bora, who is a member of the LGBT community, as well as a member of Pride Liberation Project, an LGBTQ advocacy coalition at school.

“School is a safe space for me, I can be myself there,” she said. “I think it’s cruel that the governor would endanger students for political points.” 

In the interview, Youngkin goes on to say that the reason he feels this way is because “parents matter.” 


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