GLU’s clothing day defeats the purpose

Quote of the week:”I don’t discriminate on the basis of race or sex, I discriminate against stupid people.” (overheard at the Holmes Student Center)

Gay/Lesbian Awareness Week:This week has traditionally been one which brings out the worst in NIU students. All of the homophobes, ignoramuses and all-around ill-informed types get to spout off about how “they hate dem damn queeries” for a whole week. Stereotypes run rampant. Any guy wearing pink is not spared from speculation. The letters-to-the-editor page is full of letters until the end of the semester from those crazed-yet-naive Bible thumpers who proselytize about how “God” doesn’t allow homosexuals. Of course, the Old Testament, otherwise known as “Jewish mythology,” certainly isn’t the end-it-all rule of the universe, despite how much some overzealous Bible thumpers would like it to be.

Before I go off on too big of a “religion is for people who can’t deal with this life Christian-bashing” tangent, there actually is a problem with Gay/Lesbian Awareness Week this year. During my first two years at this alleged institution of higher learning, there was an event called “Jeans Day.” The event was GLU-sponsored and the concept was simple—if you supported human rights, you were to wear jeans. I figured since NIU students were so apathetic and ill-informed, that everyone would unknowingly wear jeans. Well, I was completely shocked when almost everyone I encountered around campus was wearing sweats. Gee, and I thought students didn’t read the Star. The fact that so many students went out of their way actually raised awareness of the gay community’s cause.

Anyway, this year, the concept has been modified. “Clothing Day” will take place Wednesday. Apparently, if a student supports human rights, they should wear clothes—a novel concept. However, this certainly doesn’t allow someone who doesn’t support the homosexual community a lot of latitude. What’s the alternative, walking to class buck naked?

This type of self-serving grandstanding certainly does not add to the very worthwhile gay rights cause. It merely makes a mockery of an entire event which once had meaning.

Axing of the Women’s Field Hockey Program:Athletic Director Gerald(o) O’Dell could have at least had the courtesy to tell these women in enough time to allow them to transfer and grab a scholarship offer. But, let’s be honest, what did you expect?

Although this situation is certainly different from the dropping of the men’s gymnastics program, here’s an interesting and little-known fact that bears reporting. When the athletic board was forced to decide between gymnastics and men’s baseball due to a budget squeeze, both programs could have been preserved. NIU was offered an annual six-figure kickback if it only would give either Pepsi or Coke a monopoly on soft-drink vending machines. The athletic board turned the offer down.

Now, I think a lot of people would rather have an athletic program which provided success and scholarships to hard-working students than the choice between two soft drinks.

The world is certainly a strange place.