December 26, 2011

Anonymous Posts (12.20.11-12.25.11)

Every week, we collect anonymous entries sent in using the link on our sidebar and post them all on Monday. We post anything as long as it doesn't contain personal attacks, hate speech, or express or insinuate that one is at risk for hurting themselves or someone else. Please read this for an explanation of this policy and seek help if your or a friend find yourself in that position. With those exceptions aside, please feel free to submit your thoughts and questions. :)

Ho ho ho!! By now, Hanukkah is almost through and Christmas has passed. Kawnzaa starts today, and I wish any of our readers who celebrate it a happy holiday!

I went to this charity drinks night last night to benefit the Phoenix Mercury Charities and One-N-Ten (Phoenix), an organization that serves LGBTQ youth. Serious props to the Mercury for joining forces with an LGBTQ organization. You don't see that enough in sports!

Since our last installation of Anonymous Posts, we've had five great posts! Coincidentally, most of them touched on the coming out process. Ye'tha'thne wrote about going home and her decision to come out to her mom, Jessye wonders about the parallels between 21st century homophobia and 20th century racism and antisemitism, Jacob shares the long journey his dad took to embrace him after coming out, Jonathan dreads the superficial conversations being in the closet requires, and Risa compares a summertime experience to the hardship of going back in the closet after each semester. All in all, another busy week here on The Blog!

I hope that everybody has a wonderful winter break, but here at the Blue Devils United Blog we know that that isn't always the case. There can be a lot of anxieties about going home, which may mean going back in the closet or coming out to family and friends or any number of things. Please reach out to the resources at the bottom if you find yourself in a position where you need support. We're a community and we're here to support each other, so keep checking the blog for new content and be sure to keep up with each other, as well.

Now, notes from OC!

At the risk of sounding inflammatory, I'm sort of tired of all of this he said/she said sexism in the LGBT Community (at Duke) stuff. And before you dismiss me for having male privilege and simply not seeing it—which is your favorite retort—I am a woman. I'm tired of the bickering. I'm tired of cismen being hated on simply for being born cismen. Yes, going out to LGBTQ clubs can suck because there are usually not tons of women. And yes, a lot of LGBTQ organizations nationally are run almost exclusively by gay men (you might point to BDU and say the same thing, but for anyone who was at last year’s elections, only two women ran! A 50% election rate ain’t bad...and okay, maybe we need to figure out why only two women ran, but…I digress). And yes, queer women’s culture gets overlooked for gay male culture (Tegan and Sara: 0; Lady Gaga: 231723012). But um, I like Lady Gaga! And liking her doesn’t make me a bad queer woman. And at Duke? I can’t say I’ve ever felt discriminated against in the LGBTQ community for being a woman. Most of my close LGBTQ friends are guys, and I definitely get that there can be a bit of an old boys network--they hang out a lot without me. But I have my best friends (non center folks) who I hang out with and it doesn't bother me that I don't get invited to dinner or whatever with them. I don't count the number of men and women when I walk into the center, because the gender of the person sitting next to me isn't important (to me). People don't talk to me all the time, but it's usually because they're doing homework. Would they take a break from their homework and talk to me if I was a cisguy? I don't know, and I'm not going to hypothesize about it, arbitrarily decide they would, and call sexism on it. At the risk of being even more inflammatory, I don't think Women Loving Women is helping to change the social dynamics. It's creating a insular, secretive community of queer women. Queer women have this outlet, and so they don't come to other things (I know, because I go to the other events and am frequently one of less than a handful of women), which just creates an even greater schism. Maybe it's a chicken and the egg problem--if things weren't already sexist, then queer women wouldn't feel the need to have this separate community; but having a separate community is further creating a schism, manufacturing more of a need for a separate community. Truthfully, I feel there is no place for me in the queer women's community at Duke if I'm not into cisman bashing. And I'm not. And I feel bad for my cisguy friends who get attacked any time they say something.

A potent article to say the least. Dan urges all Christians to extend Christian love towards everyone, no matter how "sinful" they may be.

Please remember that there are a number of resources available on campus and in the local community. These resources are available over breaks and throughout the school year. If you or a friend are experiencing thoughts or urges to harm yourself or somebody else, please reach out to the following resources: In an emergency, please don't hesitate to call CAPS at any time, including "after hours" at (919) 966-3820. Ask to speak to the advice nurse and tell them you are a Duke student. You may also call the Trevor Project, a national hotline specifically for lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer and questioning youth (college students included). Their number is 866-4-U-TREVOR (866-488-7386).


  1. #1, it's all well and good that you feel that way (because women don't all feel/think the exact same way about everything, nor should we)...but I find it very sad that you feel the need to dismiss other women's feelings just because you don't agree with them. As you acknowledge, there are a lot of women (and men, I might add) in the LGBTQ community who have expressed their discomfort with the status quo of male privilege. I don't take any issue with the fact that you don't side with them. The vast majority of human beings on this planet do not side with feminism; you aren't exactly blowing anyone's mind by saying you aren't a feminist. What I find probematic is your dismissal of feminist women's feelings as being simply "bashing." You're arguing that these women are purposefully misinterpreting other people's actions as malicious, when in fact people mean them no harm. By doing so, you're telling women who happen to see the status quo differently from you that they are making things up, that they're overreacting, and that they're bad people who bash men because it somehow gratifies them to bring men down or something. Has it struck you that that is a pretty misogynistic view of other women? Instead of saying "Well, I don't agree with you, but that doesn't mean you're stupid," you find it easier to label women who disagree with you as deliberately bashing, attacking, segregating, schism-creating, mean-spirited harpies. That's so sexist, I can't even really put it into words!

  2. You are write that you are “tired of all of this he said/she said sexism in the LGBT Community (at Duke) stuff.”

    You know, I am tired of all of this too. I am so, so tired.

    I am so, so tired of people assuming any woman who calls out sexism must hate men.
    I am tired of being asked to PROVE that sexism exists,
    like I will be asked to do now
    and give an example now:
    I am tired of listening to “jokes” in spaces with cismen that casually drop the word
    [and it is in CAPITALS because you say it in lowercase but I hear it in uppercase]
    And I am so, SO tired of being told by these same cismen to “calm down” or “I’m worried about how worked up you’re getting”, when I tell them, “that’s not funny!” because anyone who has been touched by rape would understand why rape is not a joke.
    I am sick and tired of explaining that hating the way SOME cismen TREAT us is not the same thing as hating ALL cismen or hating them for “being born” as cismen.
    And I am sick and tired of explaining the difference.

    I am so, so tired of watching women walk into LGBTQ spaces (at Duke or beyond) and be visibly uncomfortable.
    I am tired of watching them be ignored and be visibly hurt after no one interacted with them.
    I am sick and tired of wondering if this experience made them feel further alone.
    And I am so, SO tired, [and the only thought that raises to the surface of my thoughts is “how dare you”] when you invalidate all of these experiences-especially because they include my own- by saying that this is not the case. [as if I would EVER trust a person with privilege to tell an oppressed person when they are and are not experiencing oppression.]

    I am SO, so tired of defending women’s community.
    I am tired of defending the one connection that so many women have to the LGBT Center at Duke at ALL.
    I am tired of defending the one reason that kept me in this community.
    I am tired of explaining that rather than being a “siphon”, WLW is acting as an entry point for new women in the community.

    I am tired of entertaining the idea of why we need COMMUNITY, because as if anyone in the LGBTQ community should pretend that they don’t understand why a minority group (yes even a minority within a minority) wouldn’t need a community with people like them.
    I am tired of explaining that insular and secrete are NOT the same things as safe and confidential.

    I am tired of explaining what privilege means.
    I am tired of explaining that it is a privilege to not understand why you might feel the need or desire to attend a separate group.)

    I am tired of arguing that not all minorities think alike and that just as my opinion does not invalidate yours, so yours does not invalidate mine.