Thursday, January 13, 2005

A Sticker or a Label?

A friend of mine at Harvard Business School (HBS) sent me this note as an example of the craftiness of those seeking, not to just legitimize an immoral lifestyle, but to ostracize any who would dare object to it.

Think back to your first days here at HBS. You were probably nervous about what impression you would make, the types of people you would meet, and if you would fit. Now imagine that you had to deal with the additional discomfort of some people being shocked by or disapproving of your life. Remember the first three questions that you had to answer almost 900 times during foundations: where are you from? where did you work? are you in a relationship? That relationship question can present a major dilemma for many gay, lesbian, and bisexual students. Responding honestly can seem very risky.

If statistics prove true, there should be at least 4 or more gay, lesbian, or bisexual people in your section. Why don't you know who they are? Chances are that those people have not felt safe or comfortable to "come out" and risk a negative reaction from their classmates. So tomorrow, members of the Open For Business Club invite all members of the HBS community to take a risk. Come out and show that you support a welcoming and inclusive community by the simple act of wearing a sticker which will be given out in your classrooms. You will risk some people thinking that you are gay, and you will risk some people disagreeing with your willingness to advocate equality for all students at HBS. However, this is a small, one-time risk that will make a big difference.

Stickers featuring a large equal sign will be distributed in each RC classroom and available from many EC students as well. The equal sign represents the equality that all people hope to enjoy in our community. This is also the symbol for the Human Rights Campaign.

The trap is set: you must choose between a sticker or a label. Wear the sticker to show support, or refuse their sticker and be labeled as a hate-filled religious bigot. Which will it be for you?

Neither! But given your choices, how do you avoid their "stereotype-trap" without advocating their cause?


Valerie (Kyriosity) said...

"And the serpent was more crafty than any of the beasts of the field...."

Refuse to wear the sticker, but wear a gold star.

And who the heck asks people, "Are you in a relationship?"? I've never been asked that in my life.

Valerie (Kyriosity) said...

What did your friend end up doing?

Valerie (Kyriosity) said...

What did your friend end up doing?

Tim said...

I haven't asked him. I'll check...