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I will not let hate go unanswered — especially from members of Congress

by Rick Larsen

This month, I participated in a hearing on combatting and addressing sexual assault within the U.S. Coast Guard Academy. I wrote about this issue back in September, sharing that I was cosponsoring a new piece of bipartisan legislation that would help protect our cadets when reporting instances of sexual misconduct.

As you can imagine, I was eager to discuss this and other issues within the U.S. Coast Guard and determine what my colleagues in Congress and I could do to better support this branch of government through legislation and awareness efforts. However, one of my colleagues dedicated his time in the meeting to spewing hateful disinformation about members of the LGBTQIA+ community within our military.  

Let me make one thing clear: hate has no place anywhere, but especially not within the halls of Congress or aimed at our dedicated servicepeople. I could not sit there and let another member of Congress read bigotry into the record unchallenged. I spoke up and, in no uncertain terms, made clear that my colleague’s remarks were ignorant, unacceptable, and dangerous. He and so many other members of the chaos caucus are determined to spread hate, misinformation, and fearmonger to inflame their base – all the while ignoring the real human beings whose lives they threaten. 

That is not okay with me. That is why I spoke up. 

When it comes to matters like this one, I will always stand up against hate, and I hope you will, too. 

Hopefully, I will have an update for you in a few weeks on the original objective of that hearing: ensuring the safety of our Coast Guard cadets. I will not allow this issue to get co-opted by the chaos caucus for political culture wars, it is too important.

More soon,


Posted on March 22, 2024.