Randy P. Orso has always been guided by his faith. As a Religious Studies major at Saint Michael’s College, Randy was Eucharistic minister of the chapel and leader in Campus Ministry as well as the Saint Michael’s College Republicans, where he became the first elected openly gay college Republican chaplain. He learned early in his professional life that not everyone accepted him for being gay, but he also understood that he had the potential to be a real influence in his community.
To Randy, fighting for LGBTQ nondiscrimination protections falls squarely in line with his conservative values. “I’m a William Weld conservative – a fiscal conservative,” he said. “Small government is best. Government shouldn’t be encroaching on our freedoms, and that is a conservative value. It’s a conservative value because fairness and access to the American Dream is something that everyone should have, regardless of orientation. People should have the freedom to pursue happiness. That’s a founding value of our country.”
Randy ties his support for LGBTQ-inclusive nondiscrimination protections back to basic constitutional freedoms and his belief that everyone should have access to the American Dream. Treating all people with dignity and respect, he said, “is promised by the constitution and is the cornerstone of our American freedoms.” He draws parallels to similar campaigns against discrimination throughout American history, recalling a time when he personally knew Jewish people who were denied access to public spaces at resorts in the Poconos, where he currently lives in Pennsylvania. “I wouldn’t want to return to those days when people discriminate against each other based on anything like that. It’s unfair. It’s un-American.”