Friday, March 5, 2010

A Note for Representative Campfield

I'm writing this in response to the post that my local representative, Stacey Campfield, made on his blog a few weeks ago. I've been thinking about it since I read it, and I've moved past my initial knee-jerk response, which was to point out that Campfield can't spell simple words like "behind" and hasn't mastered the possessive use of the apostrophe in words like "people's", and really gave some serious thought to his complaint.

Representative Campfield is annoyed that state money is being spent on this:

Resource Center Sign

No, not the Honors Program. Despite his struggles with the English language, he doesn't seem to resent smarter people. Representative Campfield is offended that state money is being spent on the LGBT Resource Center that just opened on our campus. That's well within his rights, just as it's well within my rights to be offended by Representative Campfield and pretty much every line of his post.

Before we get into that, though, I want to get a few things out of the way up front. I live in Representative Campfield's district, and I vote there. Granted, I did not vote for him, and his positions guarantee that I never will, but as an elected official he must still be answerable to his constituents whether we voted for him or not. On top of that, I am also a donor to the university. I'm a small donor, not one of the "big donors" he worries about in his post, but surely, "as many departments of government are being forced to cut their funding, staff, cut back on space and other niceties of life", even the small donors count for something.

We'll come back to the donor issue. First, though, I want to look at his other points.

The Rep (as he calls himself when he posts in his own heavily moderated comments section) wonders if Christian outreach would get an office and funding. He should probably ask at the Christian Student Center, located on campus in a permanent facility on Melrose Avenue, the same street as the LGBT Resource Center. He wonders if conservative outreach or Republican outreach might be on the list to get funding. There's no need to wonder, The Rep, since you can just ask at the biweekly meeting of the College Republicans, which is held on campus in one of the many meeting rooms at the University Center at no cost to the group itself. I guess the answer to that question, then, would be yes, Christian outreach, conservative outreach, and Republican outreach all receive space and funding on campus.

The Rep wonders, though, about who is next on the list to get an office, funding, and a room. (I, on the other hand, wonder when an office stopped being a room.) The heterosexual "players" outreach, the Chubby Chasers, the swingers outreach, BDS&M outreach, and the furries are not next on that list, because there aren't any recognized student groups on campus for any of those categories. Maybe someday, when each of those groups has an organizational charter, has petitioned for and been granted recognition, and has a stable membership willing to campaign for funding and space, they might be on the list, but for now those groups pose no threat to The Rep's wallet.

The Rep still wonders, though, why some people feel entitled to other people's money based on their sexual orientation or fetish. I'm not sure about the fetish part, since I know of no group of fetishists demanding funds to support their penchant for whatever odd thing it is that they are attracted to. As for the people who feel entitled to other people's money based on their sexual orientation, well, I'd make the argument that they're asking for their own money. Last time I checked, there were still LGBT people paying taxes in Tennessee, and there were LGBT students paying tuition and activity fees to attend the university. It's their money, too.

And really, how much money is the Resource Center actually costing the university, anyway? Not a lot, when you break it down.

First, look at the location. The OUTreach LGBT Resource Center is located in Melrose Hall, one of the oldest buildings left on campus. Melrose is so old, in fact, that it has no mortgage and carries no bonds from construction. The building and the land it sits on are completely paid for. Used for decades as a dormitory, Melrose has sat vacant for three years since the housing department stopped using it. No one else was asking for the space, the same way that no one is asking for the space in Strong Hall, which is busy rotting at the other end of campus since it was vacated at the same time. Giving space in Melrose to the center doesn't take space away from anyone, but instead provides a purpose for a historic campus building that would otherwise rot like an eyesore in the middle of the pedestrian walkway.

Then there's the matter of the resources, but there's no cost there, either. Everything in the center, from the furniture to the books to the posters on the walls to the office supplies, is donated. I know, because a half dozen or so of the books came from my bookshelves, and I also arranged the donation and delivery of several pieces of the furniture. I am not anywhere close to being the only person to do so, either.

The resource center has no telephone. No phoneline, no voicemail, no physical telephone hardware, which means no telephone-related expenses.

There is the matter of staff. The center is currently staffed part time by two graduate assistants. One of those assistants does get a stipend from the Commission for LGBT people. The other assistant, though, is a volunteer, which means he is paying to go to the university. The math may not be exact, but I'd say that the person being paid to staff the place and the person who is paying to be able to staff the place pretty much cancel each other out, the same way a Diet Coke cancels out eating a candy bar.

(Shut up. It totally does.)

As near as I can tell, the only things that still need to be accounted for to put The Rep's mind at rest are utilities and the signs out front.

The signs already existed, since the Honors Program was already there, but there was a cost to add the wording about the resource center to them. Save that thought for the wrap up, when we get back to donors.

As for utilities, the center has no plumbing. No toilet, no sink, no water faucets or fountains. If the staff have to use the restroom, they have to lock the center and go to another building. This means, of course, that there's not a water bill. It's the dead of winter, though, and the heat is on. Melrose Hall has centralized, steam powered heat. You can't really regulate it, and if you turn it off in parts of the building then the pipes will freeze, so the heat is either on or off. Since the Honors Program was already located in Melrose long before the LGBT center was, the heat was already on. Melrose isn't air-conditioned, due to the age of the building, so that won't be an issue, either.

That just leaves electricity. The center doesn't have a computer, television, or any other technology installed. Instead, there are three ceiling lights and a lamp. One of the ceiling lights is always on, because it's one of the building's emergency lights. It would be on whether the center was there or not. The other two lights are only turned on if someone is using one of those two rooms, the same as the floor lamp in the main room. Since the center is only open for twenty hours a week, those lights are only on a maximum of twenty hours a week.

All of this analysis leaves us with three lights' worth of electricity usage a month and the one-time cost of adding words to a few signs that were already in place. That's where the donors come in, and like I said way back at the beginning, I'm one of them. A payroll deduction comes out of my check every month and goes into the account for the Commission for LGBT people, and I know several other people who do the same. Between all of us, I'm sure we have those three lamps and those signs covered. As for the university's big donors, which The Rep is so concerned about, their donations are almost always earmarked for specific purposes. None of them are paying for the resource center unless they want to.

After all of that, where does this leave us? Well, the opening of the resource center was attended by a few hundred people. Those people live in Tennessee, and pay taxes in Tennessee. They also have family members who pay taxes in Tennessee and friends who pay taxes in Tennessee. State money comes from everyone in the state, not just from the straight people who live here. And yes, there are some straight people who probably don't want their money going for an LGBT center, but you know what?

There are also racist people in Tennessee, and they probably don't want their money going to the university's Black Cultural Center or the Office of Minority Student Affairs. There are xenophobic people in Tennessee, and they probably don't want their money going to the university's International House. There are childless people in Tennessee who may not want their money to support the university's Early Learning Center, and there are probably people somewhere in Tennessee who don't want to support the university's Office of Disability Services. There are atheists in Tennessee who may not want any state dollars going to the Campus Ministries. For every center, group, or office on campus, there is at least one person in the state of Tennessee who doesn't think their money should pay for it. That's the way the world is.

As for Representative Campfield... it's his job to work on behalf of his constituents, whether those constituents are straight, gay, black, white, young, old, players, chubby chasers, Republicans, Christians, atheists, conservatives, liberals, swingers, or even furries. If those people are paying taxes, then those people are paying him. If he doesn't feel like he can focus on things that are actually important, and instead feels like imposing his moral structure on others should be a higher priority, then I'm happy to vote for his opponent in the next election instead.

I don't want my state money going to people I disapprove of, and right now that's you, Rep.

36 comments:

Skald said...

Well said Joel.

UTalum said...

As a UT alum:
About time UT got an LGBT outreach center....maybe that will take us off of the list of being a homophobic campus. While I don't personally agree with the moral aspects of LGBT students, I also don't believe it is my place to judge them. If that is the way they choose to live their life, then my job is to be a loving an supporting Christian to them and welcome them with open arms. Christians often don't realize they are also committing a sin by judging those with a different sexual orientation....and I wish they would.

Now, the only issue I had with your wonderful post has to do with the Christian Student Center, or the CSC as we called it. the CSC receives NO funding from the university whatsoever. It is completely self supported by donations from TN churches of Christ. The building was purchased years and years ago by early CSC members. Granted, we haven't been asked to move (like the buildings on Andy Holt), so we do have a blessing there. But please note that most campus ministries are not funded by the state. I am sure there are some, but not all are.

But overall, I am so glad to hear that UT is addressing the needs of today's college student, and for a school so deeply rooted in tradition, there are sure to be a few speed bumps along the way.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for this post! It's so wonderful to occasionally read logical, well-written things on the internet, especially with blogs like Rep. Campfield's out there.

Elizabeth said...

Stacey Campfield is an idiot. This is one of the worst things I've seen, but he opens his idiot mouth about a number of things. I don't understand why he keeps getting re-elected. You should submit this to the newspapers and media outlets. He makes me furious.

Anonymous said...

As was noted by others, the campus ministries are not state/university funded or owned. College Republicans are also self funded. They get no university money. They have no permanent office yet have had a longer history and more active members then the GLBT club.

If we are going to dole out money by number of members then I am sure FCA and others would get tons of state/university money. They do not.

Yes, you pay tuition(?) and taxes so you should be treated as an equal to all other groups on campus. That is not what you are asking for or getting. You are getting special treatment and special funding and rights.

Calling favorites based on the popular fad or minority of the moment is not equal justice or treatment for all.

If one group gets funds, staff and a permanent office then all groups should get funds staff and a permanent office or none should get funds, staff and a permanent office.

As I have said in the past. I don't care what you do on your own time with your money. Just treat me and others as equals or leave my money alone.

As for comments on my blog, if they follow my rules for comment they go up. They don't all have to agree. See the comments on there now.

The Rep.

Joel said...

The Rep, and UT Alum, Campus Ministries and College Republicans are still receiving campus support and funding, since they are allowed to use campus programming and meeting space in the University Center, to advertise events on the online campus events calendar free of charge, etc. I do appreciate the correction that CM paid for their own facility, though, so thank you, UT Alum.

As for College Republicans not having a permanent space... have they asked for one?

Comparing College Republicans and LGBT students is a flawed analogy, anyway. You choose to be a Republican or a Christian, but you are born gay. The LGBT Resource Center falls under the same category as the Black Cultural Center. Both offer a place of comfort and support to students, faculty, and staff, and both make UT a more attractive place to prospective students and staff.

As for the center using The Rep's money, I see that he handily ignored my points about the spending in order to stubbornly repeat his point. As I pointed out, the Center is a rather small expenditure, financially, and LGBT people in Tennessee pay the same taxes that you do. Nashville's Pride Festival, for example, has been attended by as many as 18,000 people, and the one here in Knoxville had attendance in the hundreds, if not the thousands, when I was there. If it helps you sleep at night, The Rep, assume that any state funds going to the center are coming from those taxpayers, and that your dollars are safely going somewhere else.

Now, since your point is that you should be treated equally or your money should be left alone, can I make the same one? Since Tennessee doesn't treat LGBT people equally under the law, can we stop paying taxes, and have our money left alone?

Dee said...

Very well researched and stated. One thing I think The Rep missed was the word "Ally" on the sign. That's a good reminder that the center is also a resource for straight, non-transsexual/transgender people who are interested in equality and supporting their friends, family, and fellow community members who are LGBT.

Anonymous said...

You have the exact same rights as everyone else. Nowhere in the law does it say "We fund X for all people except GLBT people" Nowhere.

Now, I can say the opposite for GLBT clubs.

CRs and others would love funding but they realize to be fair they should only get what others get.

As for your "It's not that much money" defense, I don't care if it is one dollar. Make funding, staff and permanent office space open to all or none.

As for being "born gay" I don't think they have found the "Gay gene" so until they do you are in the same category as those who feel they were born to love chubby people, skinny people, Bald people or people who wear funny, furry suits. You are attracted to what you are attracted to. You shouldn't get special treatment because of that.

The Rep.

Anonymous said...

Dear "Mr. Rep"

I am a straight woman who has been happily married for over 15 years, with two beautiful children born naturally from my body. God has blessed me with this family.

I didn't choose to be attracted to men. I was born knowing that I was straight and wanted to form a family with a man some day.

Do you choose to be straight? Or is it something you have always been?

Assuming that you, like I, were born straight, how can you not understand that some people are born gay?

You are being foolish and combative, and I hope God will open your heart to see the truth.

Blessings in Christ,
Laura

Liz said...

Well stated Joel. People like you are the future of Tennessee. People like Campfield are it's past. They know that hate is losing and that's what makes them so noisy. Sadly, it's bigots like him that make outsiders point and laugh at a beautiful state that's run by such ugly and narrow people.

You shall overcome.

Jeannie said...

Who knew little Joel had such a long reach? I love you. Speaking as a conservative Republican and LGBT ally who works with many students on our campus, I for one am thrilled this center opened and know it will offer assistance to many students in need in years to come.

Joel said...

With all due respect, Mr. Campfield, the laws of Tennessee do treat gay people differently, and there are laws that explicitly say "This is for everyone but gay people". The Tennessee Marriage Protection Amendment, passed in 2006, is a glaringly obvious example.

As for the exclusivity of LGBT club memberships, I can't speak for the clubs at the school you went to, but the Lambda Student Union at UT is open to all students, gay or straight. As Jeannie pointed out in this comment section, the LGBT Resource Center explicitly states right there on the sign that it is for LGBT people and allies. It's not an exclusive club, but is open to everyone who isn't holding hatred in their hearts.

Anonymous said...

To overcome, one must be oppressed. When someone is getting special treatment/money they are not oppressed. They are being treated as superiors. They are oppressing others by taking their money and getting a disproportionate share.

You can keep calling "bigot", "Hater", "narrow" etc. Ad homonym attacks don't bother me. I know those type attacks are used by people who can not argue their point of view with facts or logic and it does not change those facts I have brought up.

The Rep.

Joel said...

I haven't called anyone a bigot or a hater. I was making the point that the center is open and welcoming to anyone who doesn't hold hatred for the LGBT community. Unless you'd like to state otherwise, Representative Campfield, I was assuming that you were included in the non-haters. Am I incorrect in my assumption?

Anonymous said...

Short of convincing genetic evidence to the contrary I have no reason to not believe that heterosexuality is the norm and is genetically natural for reproduction of the species.

Are their abnormalities? Of course.

Are those abnormalities genetic or learned? So far there is no convincing, unbiased, proof for the genetic argument.

While not scientific I can only attest to what people I know who lead the alternative lifestyle have said to me.

9 out of 10 admit to being physically and or sexual abused as a child. Not because of their lifestyle. More just some pervert or sick cruel adult.

Of those who say "they tried it once" or claim to be "bisexual" I hear the same story from most. Drugs or alcohol abuse and a person pushing them to do something they are not sure they want to do. But were drunk, high so they went ahead. Now they feel they have the label so they continue on.

Others say "I always knew I was different since I was a little child" Well name one kid who at some point doesn't think they are different. When many children are young they are not sexually active or really all that interested in the opposite sex. At some point someone says they are gay or whatever. This plants seeds of doubt in the child's mind. An unsure child says to themselves "Well maybe I am" Then someone starts pushing them to "Explore it!" "Explore it!" Something happens and then the child falls into the "Well I have done it, I have the title I might as well go all in."

While I am sure the attacks on me are about to go through the roof I am only being honest as to what I see and hear from those in and around the lifestyle.

I don't hate gay people (unless they were a jerk regardless of their lifestyle). But I do not feel special rights are warranted with state funding for what has not been proven to be a natural handicap.

The Rep.

Anonymous said...

Joel,

DOMA is not a special new right. There is no new special added benefit to anyone. Nor is it a right that automatically gives anyone government money.

It is a protection of the standard that has always been in place. All people (Gay straight or otherwise)are allowed to marry anyone who fits in the definition of the act. It may not be who they want, it may not be with what they want, it may not be with as many people as they want or people of the age they want but it is the same as it has always been. No group is specifically named or excluded and thus is fair for all.

UTalum said...

I didn't consider the Union space or program announcements, etc because, at least with the CSC, we rarely used them. So thanks for that thought. :)

Wish I could be there to see this unfolding.

Love from a Proud Christian, a Moderate, and an ALLY.

Anonymous said...

I'm a Californian, so I'm reasonably familiar with the ins and outs of "Defense of Marriage" legislation--we're STILL fighting over Proposition 8. I take issue with the comment that the DOMA is fair.

If they passed a "Defense of Marriage" law that forbade divorce and punished those who cheat on their spouses, there would be blood in the streets, yet these assaults on traditional marriage are far more harmful and insidious than allowing homosexual couples the same legal rights and protections as heterosexual couples--and the civil unions that are out there don't, few come even close, and the "separate but equal" argument should have been buried alongside Apartheid. Saying "I'm not against gay marriage, I'm just for traditional marriage" only sounds reasonable until you change a few of the words--"I'm not against interracial marriage, I'm just for traditional marriage" for instance, or "I'm not anti-womens' liberation, I'm just for traditional gender roles." See the problem? Innocuous wording cloaks a very direct assault on a group.

As to the notion that homosexuality is a choice, it's certainly possible. Some people may well make the choice. Some don't. Citing studies performed by groups with a political agenda and/or a financial stake in misleading doesn't change either of those facts. Some choose. Some are born that way.

That the center is funded almost entirely by donations that were earmarked for this specific purpose should be lauded. Money isn't being diverted from other places to fund this--the grad student would be paid regardless of where they were working.

Unless it is The Rep's intention to obnoxiously declare himself an anachronistic bigot, this should be a non-issue. That an elected official has time to blog-stalk someone who disagrees with them is shameful--don't you have budgets to balance, laws to pass, and so forth?

Steve said...

I find it very disingenous that the esteemed Representative is making this an issue about governement funding when it seems pretty clear that the real issue is about his personal view on homosexuals.

I very much doubt that if the student group in question was the Campus Crusaders that Mr. Campfield would raise such a stink. Using funding as a pretext to fuel bigotry is a shameful way for an elected official to act.

Anonymous said...

As I have said many, many times. I don't care about the GLBT clubs. They can self fund and do what ever they want until the cows come home for all I care. My issue is with special treatment of one group over another.

It is a fact that no one has contradicted.

As for my commenting on this blog on my own time, The blog host linked to my blog post as a comment and offered rebuttal with a link. The comment section is an open forum (Or at least I thought it was) If the host of this blog does not want me to comment and or share my honest opinion all he has to do is say the word.

Joel said...

If your objection is to some groups receiving "special treatment", which you define in this case as receiving space and funding on campus, then why are you only limiting your objection to LGBT students and their allies?

Do you also object to the space and funding allocated to the Black Cultural Center, the Office of Minority Student Affairs, or the International House?

If so, why? And if not, why not?

Anonymous said...

While segregation and separation movements favor one group over another, I have never seen segregation or separatist movements based on race bring our country together or be beneficial to any group long term.

JMBower said...

Well put Joel. There's nothing I appreciate more than a solid, well thought through critique of what is essentially a knee-jerk reactionary stance. "The Rep" (seriously? You can refer to yourself as that with a straight face?) posted bigotry thinly veiled. You took the arguments one by one and broke them down. This is a fantastic post. It doesn't matter what side of the issue someone is on. Rational argument always trumps bigoted blathering. I have absolutely no dog in this fight, being neither gay, or paying taxes there. As an objective outsider, I'd say your arguments are a great deal more cogent than "The Rep"'s. Now you just have to choose a nickname to call yourself in the third person as he does...
Good for you for having the courage of your convictions. Now change your name to Smith and get yourself to Washington, Mr.

Anonymous said...

Many personal attacks, yet still no contradiction of my facts.

Dane said...

I actually came to this article prepared (in principle) to defend Representative Campfield's position. I generally fall on the conservative end of the spectrum, particularly on fiscal matters. So I figured, it's entirely reasonable not to want government funding going to non-academic use, when we're in the middle of a recession. What's the big deal?

After reading through the comments, though, I find myself in agreement with Joel and others here - all protestations to the contrary aside, Representative Campfield really does not appear to be motivated by anything other than bigotry here. And that is not a word that I use that casually.

So, as a word of advice to "The Rep": quit while you're ahead, you are just digging your hole deeper every time you post.

Dee said...

"The Rep" - You have asked people to contradict your facts. What facts? That the people you have talked to were abused as children? I don't know the people you talked to, so I can't say whether they were abused or not.

I can tell you that the majority of people I know who are gay, lesbian, or bisexual were not sexually abused as a child. Many of them have, however, been hassled, bullied, and treated poorly to the point of abuse due to their sexual identity. People have belittled them, told them they were unnatural, told them they are welcome to get married if it's to someone they don't love and don't want to spend their life with, called them horrid names, been physically threatening. It's a very common occurrence, and why an outreach center is an important resource.

Anonymous said...

Funny, All I see is hatred and close minded attitude coming from others in the comment section here. Hatred for people with different points of view that may not conform to your own.

I have never made comment on how I think any person regardless of their sexuality is less of a person or not worthy of respect based on their point of view.

I have not called names or insulted any one.

I guess I am alone in that.

Elizabeth said...

Joel,

This is Elizabeth's husband posting under her name. You are absolutely correct in every way . As someone who works in politics and government locally, I can tell you without a doubt that the state of Tennessee has wasted 10 times the amount of tax dollars on Rep. Campfield's salary and also dealing with the piles of crap he stirs up in our state government.

The only thing I will tell you is that there is no need for you or anyone else to feel attacked by him or even respond. Stacey Campfield has never put even close to the same amount of time in research and thought as you put into your comments, all of which are correct and facts. All Rep. Campfield does is waste the time and money of the taxpayers and good people of this state. He is a sorry excuse for an elected official. I can tell you though that despite the fact he keeps getting elected (which amazes me and tells me there are more uneducated, crazy, and less caring people than him voting) that no state or local government employee or elected official cares or even listens to what he says. Ask him how many pieces of legislation that he has authored has passed. Everything he does is a waste of time and money. The more he is against something (because he is NEVER for something), the more it is going to be seen by the real leaders as positive. He is as insignificant as it gets in politics and government. The fact he still gets elected shows what a joke our election process has become. If people would actually turn out, he'd never win. Even the people in his own party don't pay attention to him. There is no reason for any of us to either. What you have done to help the LGBT center is noble. Most of us know that. We also understand why those groups exist on campus. He doesn't and never will. Don't give him the time of day; he doesn't deserve it.

Elizabeth said...

And one more thing. Rep. Campfield, you may not have used the actual words but you have implied a million times over since the day you were first elected that you are a bigot and many other things. We get it. Focus on something that is more than .0000000000001% of the state budget. I guarantee the bible bangers on campus get more state resources than this center. Why don't you go hate on them?

Anonymous said...

So you assume.......

Suzanne said...

Way to go, Joel! You are so well spoken in your support for this much needed resource center. I'm glad to see that UT is offering this resource to students and that it has staff members such as yourself to support it so well. I am a Christian and I believe God loves us all and wants us to love each other and treat each other with respect and kindness. Discriminating and hating others is something one should never do as a Christian, especially not in the name of God. Plus, I personally believe it is just plain rude to be so concerned with another person's sexuality. And, I don't remember ever "choosing" to be straight. I don't believe one "chooses" something like sexual orientation.
Keep up the good arguments, Joel! You are great!

Joel said...

Representative Campfield, I'm sorry that so many of the LGBT people that you spoke to were abused, physically or sexually. I hope that they are seeking help in overcoming that abuse, and that they can go on to live happy, fulfilling lives.

No one deserves to be bullied, harassed, or abused, but the fact that many people are indicates that there should be some sort of resources available to help them, doesn't it?

While I am sorry for the people you spoke to, I think you need to survey a wider population of LGBT people before you make sweeping judgments about the community, because you seem to have fallen into a logical fallacy. In the same way that some birds are black, but all birds are not blackbirds, some people may attribute their sexual identity to abuse, but that doesn't mean that everyone with that identity was abused. I know many, many gay people who were not abused, and who are gay because they've always felt that way, as far back as they can remember, and I would be happy to put you in touch with them to give you a fuller picture of this particular group of your constituents.

I'd even be happy to meet with you to discuss it if you wanted. I don't speak for all gay people, but I can at least offer a different viewpoint from the ones you have spoken to.

Rod said...

Joel,

You impress me. The world needs many more people like you, and many fewer bigots like "The Rep."

Words matter, and so do actions. That's why bullying and bigotry, whether at the level of name-calling in the cafeteria or hateful legislation from the Capitol Building, are so damaging and poisonous to society. These things tear our country apart and weaken us at a time when we need to be strong and supportive of each other.

How can I make a donation of money and resources to the OUTreach Center? I'd also like to donate to the Black Cultural Center.

Joel said...

Thanks, Rod, and everyone who has left a kind word here.

I've been kind of overwhelmed by the support I received after posting this, because there were a couple hours on Friday night when I was like, "Oh, crap, I work for a state school and just picked a fight with my state rep. Should I go clean out my desk now, or wait until Monday?" I baked a whole pan of tarts, and ate half of them (there will probably be an entry on that later if anyone's really curious) because I was nervous and freaked out.

At the same time, though, I remember a quote that I've read more than once by Edmund Burke, which is "Good men need only to stay silent for evil men to prosper," and I remember that so much of our LGBT heritage has been a history of silence and marginalization. If you know that something is wrong, you are also committing a wrong by not trying to correct it, and as a person who has helped to open the resource center I didn't feel that I could, in good conscience, let The Rep's post stand unchallenged.

Donation information for the LGBT Resource Center is available on the center's webpage, at:

http://lgbt.utk.edu/center/

Donation information for the Black Cultural Center is available on the Office of Minority Student Affairs webpage, at:

http://omsa.utk.edu/alumni/

puck_nc said...

Adding my support to your efforts, Joel! You've worked very hard to bring this about and I admire how you've refused to let one bigot bully you.

Shannon

Joel said...

Thanks, but a lot of other people did most of the work. I just donated and publicized.