Yesterday, Washington Blade reporter Chris Johnson became the news when standing up to a bully administration. While handling his monthly duties in the White House Press Pool, he was asked to swap seats with CNN reporter Kaitlan Collins. This would move him up and Collins back in the briefing room. Johnson refused to move as the seating assignments are determined not by the White House, but by the Correspondents’ Association. He was then threatened with the Secret Service. As Jim Acosta noted on CNN last night, Chris Johnson did the right thing.
“Chris Johnson, thank goodness for him, refused to get up out of his seat. So, it took almost an act of civil disobedience to foil their plans.”
His professionalism and ethics are exactly what we need more of these days. As the Blade Foundation continues its mission to support the next generation on LGBTQ reporters, Johnson is the role model we aspire to keep supporting. Blade Scholarship recipient Phillip Van Slooten, said last year that visibility matters and we could not agree more. If people didn’t know who Chris Johnson was before and who he represents, they will now. And, they’ll know that the LGBTQ perspective and voice matters and that it not only represents the community but supports its allies.
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