There is no doubt that this campus is, in many ways, homophobic. If you wear a rainbow flag pin, you are bound to get looks and the occasional negative remark. This semester has been no exception. Many of you might recall that not so long ago, homophobic slurs were painted on the walls of the tunnels.

Of course, we were left with no one to blame because the people responsible were too cowardly to admit guilt. I am left to make my own assumptions, without pointing a finger at anyone, and others are left to come to their own conclusions.

However, that incident was only one instance of prejudice.

The Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Friends Association has encountered many problems promoting events. The posters placed around the campus get torn down on a regular basis or disappear as soon as they are put up.

Furthermore, University Vice President and Dean of Students Paul Burgett expressed that the tunnel incident would be a great opportunity to have a dialogue to work on these problems, but he did not take the measures needed to accomplish one.

It seems that this university does everything in its power to stop racial bigotry, but pussyfoots around issues that concern the safety of the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender students.

On the bright side, change is being made even without the administration?s support. Realizing the homophobia on this campus and acknowledging the administration?s indifference to gay issues, students pitched in to make some changes.

The Sigma Delta Tau sorority showed great support by being the first organization to step up and offer to co-sponsor the spring Drag Show, which is a highlight of the Gaypril events. Furthermore, the Drama House is helping the UR gay community by co-hosting the Big Gay Party this Friday.

In daily matters, the Common Ground Caf fosteres an environment where the UR gay community can feel safe and have a place to hang out. The rainbow flag is being displayed there for the month of Gaypril, also known as Gay Pride Month.

Moreover, the show of hands display on April 4 embraced diversity on campus.

This should be a lesson to homophobic students and administrators who pay more attention to UR fluff like Meliora weekend, while ignoring the well-being of students on our campus.

I hope people at UR realize that gay people and their supporters are everywhere. A little consideration from above would go a long way towards providing a safer environment for everyone at UR.



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