The Chronicle’s View: Celebrate diversity at U Pride Week

By and

Yesterday started this year’s U Pride Week sponsored by the Office of Diversity and the campus LGBT Resource Center.

Every year the same criticisms are made; namely, if there’s a week highlighting diverse sexual orientations, then there should be a “straight” week. Sometimes during International Week there are complaints about the lack of a white American week.

These comments are made by people reacting to situations on this campus. The insanity of these suggestions is only understandable if one applies the same logic to other campuses or places.

Imagine a Southern Pride Week at U Miss. A Surfing Week at UC Long Beach. Hindu Day in India. Muslim Day in Iran. Ocean Appreciation Week in Fiji. Black Pride Week at Florida A&M University. Suburban Day in Sandy. Mormon Pride Week at BYU.

Who in their right mind would advocate adding White Straight Week at the U to this fictitious and facetious list?

This ridiculous complaint aside, what really irks people about Pride Week is the recognition of something so…so…problematic.

It’s “controversial” to have a week honoring something that many on campus consider a sin. The debate over whether diverse sexual and gender orientations are chosen is scientifically inconclusive, forcing the question to be addressed in ways plagued by relativism.

The fact of the matter is, diversity is important.

Whether or not a student believes the issues addressed during Pride Week are something to be proud about, it is indisputable that those issues are part of celebrating diversity.

Diversity means different. Our community’s gender and sexual minorities have perspectives, experiences and beliefs that are different. That means they are inherently valuable to the U community.

Let’s put aside the unanswerable and highly explosive questions surrounding whether or not to be proud during Pride Week and simply recognize that different is good. Different is something to be proud of.