Discussion of Gay Issues on Campus Hasn't Changed

by David Weinberg | 10/29/99 5:00am

To the Editor:

I visited thedartmouth.com to check out local coverage of the presidential candidate town meeting and stumbled on an article on life of gays and lesbians in the Greek system. ("Panel discusses being gay, Greek at Dartmouth"). It is amazing how discussion of the issue hasn't really changed significantly from my Dartmouth experience.

It is somewhat troubling to read an officer of a fraternity claim that events such as the panel that occurred at Sigma Nu " '[are] only the a beginning of discussion,' and that Dartmouth students 'shouldn't give up' on the idea of creating a more receptive campus." This discussion has been going on since at least since my years at Dartmouth, and it would be naive to think it didn't exist before my time.

And it disturbs me (but doesn't surprise me) that not one person at this "discussion" (a term, I assume, was favored over "mandatorily required Greek community programming event") would be critical of the Trustees' student life initiative. After all, if there wasn't a Greek system on the Dartmouth campus, then "discussions" about how hellish the Greek experience is for some groups on campus would not be necessary, would they?

Finally, I was a gay member of a Greek house, and my experience was universally positive, supportive, and friendly. I suppose I should also be disturbed that the coed experience was left out of this "discussion." But that was typical of my experience at Dartmouth, too.

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