Personal Reflection
by: Maggie Armstrong

The Laramie Project by Moises Kaufman and the Tectonic Theater Project is a play that makes audiences shudder in horror and understand the true evil in the world. This book is filled with quotes from the people of Laramie, Wyoming who believed they were living in a friendly town until the brutal murder of Matthew Shepard. In each of their stories we hear their shock and sadness over the event that tarnished their towns name and reputation. I think that this was an awful tragedy that should be told as a play to make people see how wrong it is to kill anyone based on their sexuality, or at all. This is an eye opening story that shows how unaccepting our society is of homosexuals. It used to be a crime to be gay, but today people are openly gay and in some states they can legally get married. There are many civil rights groups that are still fighting for their rights, because even today there are people against homosexuals and their lifestyles. The two young men in this book are a perfect example of people who don’t tolerate them, and they show how strongly they dislike gays by killing Matthew. I believe that any crime of hate is extremely wrong, and that Matthew Shepard didn’t deserve to die that way. Just because he was of a different sexuality doesn’t make it acceptable to beat him to death, there’s never an excuse to take the life of another innocent human being. The big themes of this play are hatred, sexuality, acceptance, grief, and forgiveness. We see hatred from Shepard’s killers, and the issue of sexuality is debated between the townspeople. His family and friends grieve over his death, and the people learn to accept one another and people’s differences. Forgiveness is shown by Shepard’s family when they don’t give the boys who killed their son the death penalty. This play is a colorful picture of some of the issues we have in society today and how communities need to come together and face them as one to right what’s wrong.

Hannah's Personal Reflection

Molly's Personal Reflection