The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

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Do unto to others?

By Aaron Zundel

Walking across campus last week, I came across a student (who from here on out I will refer to as “Dummy”) standing in front of a sign for the U’s LGBT Resource Center’s Gay Pride Week. The sign-bright pink and painted with a rainbow-quoted Jesus from the gospel of Matthew in the Bible: “Love one another as I have loved you.”

Not really thinking anything of it, I continued to walk by when I heard Dummy mutter, “Jesus didn’t know any f***,” before he, also, went on his way.

I was disgusted.

While most people who oppose homosexuality probably aren’t quite as close-minded as Dummy (at least I hope not), I do know that a large majority of the state is not very accommodating to people of differing sexualities. And by accommodating, I don’t mean politically-I mean in person. True, Dummy and his comment may be an extreme example, but I fear that attitudes like his, while usually better hidden and stifled, are all too prevalent in this state.

In our culture, we treat the Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender community with almost Nazi-like hostility. Case in point: While one rarely, if ever, sees or hears of someone in Utah being beaten for being Jewish, “gay bashing” is a very real and looming violent crime. It’s kind of funny in a sick, demented sort of way that such a thing could happen in one of the most religious geographical areas in the nation.

I, too, oppose same-sex marriage. I, too, think that the LGBT community is overly whiny and sensitive. But I also think that they are decent people who only want to be happy.

Imagine for a second growing up knowing that you’re different and feeling afraid to express that difference. Imagine for a second getting beaten or thrown out of the house when you decide you can’t live a lie anymore. Imagine living in a culture where you’re looked down upon by just about everyone.

Seriously-imagine it.

People who have experienced this type of harassment are just that: people. Despite disagreements about lifestyle and choice, they have a right to be treated like anyone else. Especially for the religious, who claim to hold themselves to a higher standard, showing anything but genuine kindness (not the fake “I love them, but I just don’t want to talk to them” line of BS kindness) to those who are different is totally unacceptable.

If you’re one of those people who are actually dense enough to voice opinions the way Dummy did, please stop. It doesn’t help anything. By being so callous and hateful, you only serve to bring others down. People like you are a disgrace to religion and humanity in general.

If, however, you’re one of the silent ones who secretly harbors disdain for the LGBT community, but at least has the decency to keep your mouth shut, I’d challenge you attend at least one of the LGBT Resource Center’s events this year. Who knows? By developing a little empathy for others, you might just become a better person.

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