Joey, Age 19, Brooklyn, NY

Joan Rivers made an absolutely ridiculous comment that there are no gay men at Occupy Wall Street, because we care too much about how we look, or whatever. She might just be trying to be funny, but it got on my nerves a little bit. When people say things like that, sometimes I want to be like “Oh my god, shut up. I know you’re trying to be funny. But it’s incredibly disrespectful.”

A teacher at Pratt didn’t think there was enough of an openly queer presence at Occupy Wall Street, and we wanted to show that’s not the case. That’s why I was under the rainbow banner at Zuccotti Park last week chanting “We’re here, we’re queer, we’re not going shopping!” The 99% includes everyone, including us.

Occupy Wall Street has been the biggest thing I’ve ever been involved in.I’ve always been ultra-liberal, and wanted to get more involved with activism, but there were never things going on around us. I helped with phone-banking for Obama, and I was involved in queer activism at my high school in Baltimore. My high school had a gay-straight alliance, and the Westboro Baptist Church protested us. No one knows why. They do it kind of arbitrarily. But it brought the school together. The school did a huge counter-protest. But life happened and activism didn’t feel like the priority.