To the editor:
Bellevue Community College believes in inclusion and respect for differences. These values are expressed in the Affirmation of Inclusion and Pluralism Compact that are posted in most rooms of the College.
After reading the “Jibberish” section of the Jibsheet in the September 30 edition, I believe it provided something more than the humor that was intended. It provided a moment to reflect on how our words and behavior may have inadvertent and potentially hurtful consequences.
The “Happy Gay Silly Horoscope” and the “Gay Cinema Wordsearch” were meant only to be funny, I know, yet for some they had an unintended effect. They perpetuated the isolation of our LGBTQ [Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Questioning] community, chipped away at the inclusiveness of our campus environment and hurt a number of our friends, both students and employees, in a very personal way.
Stereotypes are harmful and hurtful. Humor that takes its punch from belittling others, although rampant in today’s society, takes away some of our humanity.
Martin Luther King, Jr., said, “Everything that we see is a shadow cast by that which we do not see.” In order for us to become a truly inclusive, pluralistic college will require conscious efforts by all of us to be more aware of the shadows thrown by our own words and deeds, efforts we must pursue as a responsible and caring community.