Fees committee chairman uses power for discrimination

In October, the Daily published an opinion piece by now-Student Services Fees Committee Chairman Lindsay Brown. The opinion, a disheartening example of ignorance, claims the unpardonable sinfulness of homosexuality.

As Brown contends, “to purport the Bible does not explicitly condemn homosexual behavior and damn homosexuals to hell is an outright lie.” He continues, “In the beginning, God created man and woman to complement each other. Since then, God has been clear, through his word, about deviating from his divine instruction. My list does not claim to be complete, but I hope you will be convinced of God’s scorn of sexual immorality.”

Throughout the piece, Brown emits a homophobic paranoia unparalleled in my time here at the University. Vehemently throwing out venomous accusations against the University’s homosexual community, Brown proves that conservative hate-mongering is sadly alive and well on campus. His assertions are frightening, to say the least. Whether condemning gays to a life of torturous hell or lambasting those not affiliated with his extremist Christian ideology, Brown never fails to completely eviscerate all preconceived notions of social equity and understanding.

In one example, Brown uses a vicious death proclamation to degrade the gay community. As he explains, “Further in that book it is written, ‘If a man lies with a male as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death’ (Leviticus 20:13). There is no ambiguity here; one cannot claim ‘That’s just your interpretation!’ “

This same Brown – the conservative epitome of zealous lunacy – now serves as chairman of the University’s Student Services Fees Committee. Though this position does not afford Brown the opportunity to make such direct claims of homophobic rage, it unfortunately provides him the power base to subtly inject campus life with such a discriminative mentality.

This is blatantly apparent in the committee’s pending funding cuts. While Brown and the committee proposed an increase in funding to the Students for Family Values organization, they proposed no funding for the Community Child Care Center and The Wake – two organizations that embrace the kind of social difference that Brown finds deplorable – while also proposing to cut funding for the Queer Student Cultural Center nearly in half.

Such fiscal and social discrimination cannot be allowed to remain at the University. Not only does it alienate those who do not conform to the committee’s moral standards, it perpetuates a stifling sense of uniformity among campus groups. And in an educational atmosphere where social growth and understanding take precedence over thoughtless degradation, it seems that allowing a gay-hating figurehead to dictate what students can actively engage in on campus is horribly misguided.

Brown and his gang of religious warriors should no longer be able to run freely over the University’s message of compassionate understanding and social equality. Students: Get out there next election and remove these people from power. Let their putrid upchucking of social and democratic ignorance remain in the bowels of society, where it belongs, for good. Rise up and let the 2004 Student Services Fees Committee, Brown and the University community know that such highly unrepresentative personal agenda-setting will not stand here.

Frederic Hanson is a College of Liberal Arts sophomore. He welcomes comments at [email protected]