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As barriers begin to break down, some students decide to take action.

Steven, an openly gay student, appeals to his classmates for tolerance and acceptance. "There are people in this room [who] have called me a faggot or a queer. There are a couple people that have bumped into me," he says. "I don't think you guys know how bad it hurts."

From across the room, Michael, Steven's classmate, is moved. "I remember last year seeing you in the hall and screaming out one of those names you said that hurt you every night," he says to Steven. "I had no right judging you in that way, and I just wanted to apologize. You're as equal as any of us."

Steven accepts Michael's apology, and the two young men embrace in front of their fellow students.

"I just want to say that's how we change the world—one person at a time," Oprah says. "It begins by apologizing for beliefs that have had negative influences on other people."
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FROM: Oprah's High School Challenge
Published on November 09, 2006

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