I am having mixed feelings about gay housing. No, No it is not because I am a Conservative hence I must be an evil NEOCON and against the GLBT community. Gay friendly housing has been offered several universities including the University of Vermont and now it is being offered at Texas Christian University:
Courtesy of Advocate.com
Christian University to Offer Gay Housing
By Rhiza Dizon
Texas Christian University will begin offering housing specifically for LGBT students in the fall, becoming one of the few religious colleges in the nation to offer such an option.
“It’s a chance for students to be part of a unique experience,” David Cooper, TCU associate director for residential life, told the Star-Telegram. Cooper also said it’s important to universities because students who feel a connection to their school are more likely to stay.
The DiversCity Q housing component will be open to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender students as well as their allies.
Shelly Newkirk, who helped lead the effort for the DiversCity Q housing area, says her vision is for a community where gay and straight students can interact. The TCU sophomore said the new resident halls will have programs for the general campus community.
Such programs offer gay students a way to offer mutual support and create a community, said Nancy Tubbs, director of the LGBT Resource Center at the University of California, Riverside, which offers gender-neutral housing and a living-learning community similar to TCU’s. Because straight students can join the living-learning community, it’s not self-segregating, Tubbs said. “I think it’s wonderful that TCU is offering this.”
At first when I read the news about TCU offering gay housing, I thought cool!!! But then something that Coretta Scott King said once echoed in my mind:
“Segregation was wrong when it was forced by white people, and I believe it is still wrong when it is requested by black people.”
When I went to college in Texas, there was a dorm that most of the blacks were “assigned to”. I was assigned to this dorm and noticed after about 2 months that this is where all of the Black kids lived. I wanted to move and I asked the dorm director who was a Latina why did all of the Black people live in dorm “X”.
“All of the Black students live in dorm X because they usually want to live there. They feel comfortable with each other. They like it that way”.
At this particular university whenever we filled out dorm applications there was box that we checked which indicated our race. So I assumed that is how I was assigned to “the Black folks dorm”. I spoke to some of my fellow residents and they said they knew that Dorm X was where the Blacks lived but they liked it. For sake of full disclosure, occasionally a Caucasian was assigned to Dorm x but they were usually known as “wiggers” and requested to live there.
Later I became a RA (resident adviser) and noticed that when the dorm applications came in there were actually people that requested to NOT HAVE A BLACK ROOMMATE .
This is why the decision of TCU to have gay housing bothers me. I see it as self segregation which is not a good thing in my opinion I think we need more interaction among diverse groups. Gays, Straight, Black, White, Republicans, Democrats.
It is like the high school lunch table where all of the black people sit together. I never sat at those tables and in college I was cornered by a group of African American students and called a “sell out Clarence Thomas”….”Why do you sit with the white girls???”
I understand the desire for gay students to have mutual support however, I am troubled by the message it may send to others. Shouldn’t we challenge our comfort zones and break down walls rather than going to the nearest IKEA and building them? I am in favor of Black student groups, GLBT groups, Baptist and other religious student groups. Housing on the other hand, is a different issue all together. Remember all of the Equal Housing Laws we have fought so hard for in this country?
Sorry but this seems like a step in the wrong direction to me.
Autographed Letter Signed,