Not even the mist and cold could stop the College of Democrats from marching to raise awareness about the recent spike in homophobia at Minnesota State last Thursday.
A week after a sit-in was hosted in Mav Ave, the College of Democrats partnered with the LGBT Center to organize a march across campus.
Their path took them from the lobby of Preska, down the campus mall and back into the heart of the Centennial Student Union.
Drag queen Blue Rose addressed students at Mav Ave about upcoming events at MSU and directed students to nearby tables with resources available to students, including information from The Women’s Center and Planned Parenthood, who were there in support.
Blue Rose said she attended the march to show support for the LGBT community. She believes the rise in homophobia on campus is from isolation during the Covid-19 pandemic and people not facing repercussions for their hurtful comments.
“I feel these actions are geared towards that issue and that if people don’t believe in consequences, nothing will happen. They think it’s going to be okay,” Blue Rose said.
Senior Storm Novak explained that the march was hosted to target the campus climate and make MSU feel like a more hospitable place outside of the LGBT Center.
“The sit-in was more on the offense type of event saying ‘hey, we’re standing against homophobia’ whereas this is more of a ‘we want you to feel welcome here and the CSU is your space as well as like everyone else’s,’” Novak said.
Since the sit-in, Novak mentioned how more people have come up to them to voice their concerns about homophobia.
“A lot of people who normally don’t have [homophobia] on their mind have come up to me and said ‘what’s up with that?’ and ‘is there anything we can do to support?” Novak said. “It’s really nice to see.”
Novak said that marches help advocate for big causes by showing a sense of presence for underrepresented groups.
“It draws attention to the fact that these people are here, they’re queer and they’re proud. We want to show and demonstrate to the community that this is our space too and we want to be here,” Novak said.
Sophomore Atlas James agreed with Novak’s statement on bringing visibility to MSU.
“We want to show resources, people they can come to on campus and that MSU is a safe spot,” James said. “There are people on campus that are part of this culture.”
Blue Rose wants students to know that if they feel alone, the LGBT Center is available for them.
“It’s important for people to realize that no matter who you are, you are loved. The LGBT Center offers acceptance and that feeling of warmth,” Blue Rose said. “At the end of the day, it’s all about love.”
The LGBT Center is hosting a drag show Wednesday night from 7-10 p.m. in Ostrander Auditorium.
Header photo: Drag queen Blue Rose led a group of students from Preska to the Centennial Student Union last Thursday in order to raise awareness about the rise of homophobia on campus. (Lilly Anderson/The Reporter)
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