Rufus Gifford is putting his experiences as a gay man at the forefront of his campaign for state office. He is one of ten Democrats seeking election to the U.S. House of Representatives to represent Massachusetts District 3, a predominantly democratic district.
A little over a week before the party primary on September 4, Gifford has released a heartfelt advertisement discussing the many struggles he's faced as a gay person, while still recognizing his privilege as a white man.
Speaking directly to the camera, Gifford says, "Anyone who can look in the face of a gay kid who grew up in the 80s and tell them that they haven't struggled a day in their life, is fooling themselves."
He continues, "Yeah, I struggled. A lot less than most people on this planet and even in this community, but those struggles are so meaningful to me, and they made me who I am."
But it was this struggle - and the discrimination he received for his sexuality - that motivates his desire to work in public office today.
"As someone who has been called names, has been discriminated against, as someone who wasn't taken seriously for a lot of his life because of this, it made me initially want to fight for the 15-year old version of me."
"I didn't want to be judged for who I was, and I know I wanted to live in a world that was going to treat me equally. That's what I want to fight for, always, every day."
Watch the heartfelt ad below.