Joshua: Hi, I’m Josh.
James: I’m James. They call me Jamie.
Joshua: I guess I love everything about him. He’s not shy. When we met, I was shy, and now I can’t keep my mouth shut. He brought out the best in me that I didn’t know I had. I love that the most about him.
James: His country accent, the way he pronounces his words – I make fun of him all the time. We just kind of molded together, and it just clicked in my mind, I’m like, ‘This is the guy I want to be with.’We went and got married.
Josh: That day, I couldn’t stop smiling. I think my face hurt a little bit afterward, but it changed everything. The whole perspective on the relationship.
James: This year will be four years now, that we’ve been married.
Josh: We had a twelve-month lease, and it was almost up. We didn’t have any issues for ten and a half months. That day, the landlady, she actually just showed up at the townhouse, and she was just like, ‘I want you guys out by the end of the day.”
It was a two-story townhouse, there was no way we could have packed all that stuff in six hours.
James: She said she “should have never rented to the faggots.”
Josh: We didn’t break our lease - she broke it. But we still ended up having to pay for it.
We fought it, and then she finally admitted, “Well, maybe I did call him a faggot.” And the judge still found her not guilty. That was the verdict. Nothing was done about it.
James: People may tell you you’re a nobody and you’re just a little poor kid from Clay County, but you have to fight for yourself. I just don’t like seeing somebody being brought down, because we’re all equal.
Josh: It used to be about me and Jamie, but now there’s four of us. We have the two kids now, so we can’t let one bad experience run us away. Our family is here. This place made me who I am. Clay County is home.
Imagine being told you have six hours to pack up your entire life or face eviction by the police. Imagine the stress and financial burden of having to start all over again. Imagine the humiliation of having to sleep on someone’s couch because you can’t afford to live somewhere else on such short notice.
Should have never rented to fa**ots.
This was the reality for Joshua and his husband, James. They were unceremoniously evicted from their home because of their sexual orientation. One day, their landlady called them and said they had six hours to get out, explaining that she “should have never rented to fa**ots.”
Joshua and James were shocked. The couple had to move their belongings into storage and stay on people’s couches while searching for another place to live. They struggled financially with the sudden need to find another home, pay for their things to be moved and put into storage, as well as put down an unexpected security deposit. And now whenever they turn in a housing application or apply for a job, they fear that they could be discriminated against again.
Today, millions of Americans can be evicted from their homes, like Joshua and James, fired from their jobs, or denied services like medical treatment, just because of who they are. Everyone has the right to marry. Not everyone has basic rights.
Kentucky has passed 4 laws that actively harm LGBT people.Learn more
Can be fired or denied a promotion*
Can be evicted from their homes or denied housing*
Can be denied service at public establishments, denied medical treatment, or even kicked out of restaurants or businesses*
Kentucky’s total population
Total LGBT population
Of LGBT population raising children