A few weeks ago, I joined a protest on the quad against the "Conservative Coming Out Day", which was organized by the Orange and Blue Observer and a conservative student group on campus. The conservative group held a "coming out day" because the members say they feel oppressed on such a liberal campus; they said professors and textbooks all have a liberal bias, and therefore, their views are underrepresented. By using the phrase "coming out" this group trivialized the incredibly personal and painful experience a homosexual faces when saying aloud, "I'm gay". What really upset me was the fact that this group looks down on homosexuals; the members believe that homosexuality is wrong. Thus by co-opting the symbol of the closet, the conservatives made the closet a joke, something to be mocked. Furthermore, this group wanted to auction off derringers, and they encouraged females and homosexuals to enter the raffle because they wanted these supposedly defenseless groups to have equal access to guns. The fliers they handed out said, "anything that carries a purse can win". Anything? Are women and homosexuals no longer human? The rhetoric of the speaker appalled me, not only was he dehumanizing women and homosexuals, but he implied (not so subtly) that women need to realize that they need men to protect them. His entire speech was blatantly sexist and homophobic, and it made me feel angry because I wanted to believe that most people had moved past the traditional image of women and marriage.
[...] However, de Beauvoir goes on to say that women are powerful, and they represent a connection with nature that men cannot share. She says that once women are seen as humans, they are no longer objects, and cannot be conquered (de Beauvor, pp. 172) De Beauvoir asserts that women are not passive, despite the fact that they are regarded as the “second women are active participants in relationships and in life. However, the speaker at this rally seemed to have reverted back to a time when women were still seen as objects to be conquered, instead of people. [...]
[...] This so-called modern man does not want an equal, he wants someone easily controllable but superficially independent-minded. This desire reflects an ancient discourse between men and women that is primarily based on men's desire for power. While the theme of pollution was not overtly discussed in reference to women at the rally, de Beauvoir does discuss the idea that women were seen as dirty or polluted because of their reproductive functions. She asserts that childbirth was seen as dirty, and this dirtiness “reflects upon the mother” (de Beauvoir, pp. [...]
[...] Homosexuals have been accused of being child molesters or turning their children Gay. These beliefs that Gays are sinful and dangerous, which have no scientific foundation, echo the myths surrounding Jews in Medieval Europe. Up until about the fourteenth or fifteenth century Europe found itself in a state of stagnation, or better yet a state of reversion. During this time anti-Semitic feelings began to spread. Up until about 1000 A.D., Jews were looked at as possible converts; so while their religion was seen as deviating from the truth, they were still regarded as human beings, capable of being However, after about 1000 A.D., the idea that Jews could be converted and be saved began to be eclipsed with horrific myths regarding Jews. [...]
[...] Thus, he links color with success or failure. He does not see past phenotype: a Black person receiving affirmative action may not be qualified, but a white person receiving aid must deserve it. This tendency to essentialize people as deserving or undeserving based on race is dangerous; in this system people cannot be an exception because skin color, an immutable characteristic, is the rule. In the 19th and 20th centuries, Jews in Europe faced similar discrimination. Their bodies were judged to be markers of their inferiority, and they were seen as incapable of being citizens because they were physically unfit to serve their country. [...]
[...] Despite the difference in the forms of persecution, homosexuals are being persecuted; and the fact that centers exist today for the purpose of “turning Gay people straight” people suggest that the severity of this homophobia may be as deeply rooted as anti-Semitism once was. At the second rally, Buchignani spoke about the breakdown of Black and Latino families as reasons for their problems in American society. In his interview he cites hip-hop culture as a contributing factor to the social obstacles that minorities face. [...]
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