As a student at Northern Kentucky University I am very familiar with Coming Out Day that was discussed in the article “Gay Issues Prompt Controversy” in The Northerner. I am glad that the article addressed this issue because the event that takes place annually on NKU’s campus does in fact cause many controversies. Although the article addresses the various problems with Coming Out Day, it does not discuss many solutions.
The article does cover one solution, but I fear that this solution may only have a temporary effect or a very weak effect. The president of NKU, James Votruba, sent out a letter in support of Coming Out Day to the entire college community. This letter may have had some impact as one student noted he felt “happy Votruba is addressing the issue and sending something out.” Though I believe a stronger solution could take place.
The solution used was small in comparison to the degree of severity the problem holds. It was merely an e-mail from Votruba sent out to students and staff. Since I am a student at NKU I know many students discard majority of e-mails that are not expected or directly affect us. This e-mail was probably not even read by majority of students and staff who received it, thus having minimal impact on changing how NKU’s community reacts to Coming Out Day.
There are several actions NKU could experiment with to decrease the negative responses to Coming Out Day. One proposal that I believe would have the most beneficial value is to let the students who oppose this day express their feelings through an event compatible to Coming Out Day. NKU could encourage those students, who are eager to voice their opinions through taking actions that are hurtful to homosexuals, to take part in an event that will let them express their opinions in a responsible and respectful way. Thus, the students can support what they believe in without bashing others beliefs and lifestyle.
I feel that this problem is harmful to all students, staff, and the environment that our campus provides. If my proposal were taken into action there would be a drastic positive outcome in the response to Coming Out Day. Hopefully I have persuaded enough people to consider taking action in response to this issue.