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Homophobia at the University of North Texas

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University of North Texas students, voting in an online referendum, have rejected the possibility of same-sex couples running for homecoming court in 2010.

The measure was defeated, 58 percent to 42 percent, after a record number of ballots for a student government election were cast in last week’s referendum.

Although most Student Government Association elections have garnered 4 percent or less of the student body vote, 13.5 percent, or 4,895 of the 36,206 students enrolled at UNT, cast ballots in the referendum.

That means that 2,839 students at the University of North Texas voted to uphold heterosexism and maintain homophobia. It also means that 2,056 students at the University of North Texas voted against the homophobic and heterosexist majority.

I hope that this referendum is reversed. However, I do not expect the University of North Texas to be listed in the The Advocate College Guide for LGBT Students: A Comprehensive Guide to Colleges and Universities with the Best Programs, Services, and Student Organizations for LGBT Students.

Written by Eric Stoller

November 28th, 2009 at 10:53 pm

  • A UNT Student

    Just because 2,839 students voted against the bill, that doesn’t mean UNT is a school that discriminates against the LGBT community. UNT is a great place for LGBT people. The votes of about 3,000 people do not represent the majority opinions of the UNT student population. UNT is not homophobic.

  • http://ericstoller.com/blog/ Eric Stoller

    First of all, 2,839 students voted to discriminate against same-sex couples…if the majority of folks at UNT were in support of same-sex couples, they would have gone out and voted in support of the LGBT community. Talk means very little when policy making is what often decides the fate of a group of people. The silence of the many just allowed a large portion of homophobic individuals to dictate policy at UNT.

  • A UNT Student

    I wouldn’t call 2,839 students a large portion when UNT is a school of over 30,000.
    Do you go to UNT? My guess is, probably not. So how can you claim that a school is homophobic when you have not experienced it first hand? You can not.
    I do attend UNT so I can make a valid claim that it is not a homophobic place.

  • http://www.wunderkarten.de Melano Wunder

    Approximately 3000 students aren´t very represantative. This are nearly 10 percent.

  • http://ericstoller.com/blog/ Eric Stoller

    Approximately 3,000 students voted to maintain heterosexist values…about 2,000 voted for same-sex couples. That means that about 31,000 students were either apathetic, uninformed, homophobic, etc. How can anyone say that UNT is not a school that discriminates against the LGBT community when the majority did nothing to stand up against discrimination?

    “Man’s inhumanity to man is not only perpetrated by the vitriolic actions of those who are bad. It is also perpetrated by the vitiating inaction of those who are good.”Martin Luther King, Jr.

  • j.a.m.

    “That means that 2,839 students at the University of North Texas voted to uphold heterosexism and maintain homophobia.”

    No, it means that they voted for common sense and against mindless political correctness.

  • UNT Grad Guy

    I came upon this posting because I googled “University of North Texas” and “homophobia”. My reason for doing so is because I’m a grad student at UNT, who has experienced homophobia and homophobic comments once in the classroom, group work, and on Fry St. (the strip of bars along the campus). I was surprised and saddened to learn that homophobia is alive and well in Denton. I had come to this university from out-of-state and didn’t expect such ignorance on a major college campus. I’m speaking for myself, and these comments weren’t directed to me, but perhaps that is because I am a “passable” gay guy who goes unnoticed except for that time I was harassed by two men for being gay at a park adjacent to my apartments where I was playing with my dog. Go figure. Regardless, it is shocking and indicative of intolerance in a major university that does not bode well for UNT. Also, after learning about this story today, I found this quote in an Oct. 5, 2009, posting from outsports.com: “A junior who represents the College of Music, said he voted against the proposal because of opposition from parents who threatened to remove their children from the school and alumni who said they would withdraw their financial support.” I’m not at all surprised after my experiences here. If I had known what I know now after seven months in this town, I wouldn’t have attended this university. I have attended university both in Oklahoma and California and have felt comfortable on both campuses with a university that is supportive of the GLBT community. I recommend to LGBT students looking for good schools in the area with supportive communities to seriously consider University of Texas – Austin and University of Oklahoma – Norman, both of which are supportive of LGBT students. Dollars speak and schools that let this kind of intolerance slide by quietly shouldn’t benefit from the creative tenacity and commitment that LGBT students offer to the academic environment based on our unique experiences and sociopolitical challenges.

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