When National Coming Out Day and Admissions Open House combine . . .

. . . wide-eyed prospective students get a slightly different view of Wes than Admissions may have planned:

Seriously—it was awesome seeing prefrosh families gawking (or smiling) at the chalking all day. (Though I haven’t heard any reports of mass queer make-out sessions in the middle of Information Sessions . . . ) Happy belated National Coming Out Day.

  • 23232

    the gay community’s trolling all over this shit!

  • 23232

    the gay community’s trolling all over this shit!

  • Jenn

    Citizen- if everybody at Wes thought the same, then it wouldn’t be a safe haven foe expression. This isn’t a heated debate, nor a threatening one- it’s merely a discussion started by a few complaints, as far as I can tell. The only thing I don’t like about this “debate” is the continued assumption that outspoken queer expression is immediately an activism and awareness effort. The objectors are assuming there’s seriousness and true queer-student-body representation behind the harmless, and occasionally immature, statements made. They should lighten up by realizing “that community” is also able to lighten up.

    I saw the things around campus as a way to show visitors the open and non-oppression obsessed side of parts of our queer community that can comfortably make a self-parody. If you *really* want to see significance, fine: it was a joking “rebellion” against having a hard to notice queer presence on campus. The chalking and kiss-in weren’t trying to be representative of the queers, but a fun “we’re here we’re queer” event that invited people to see a light-hearted, ridiculous, probably giggly scene. The scene was sexual because, well, queerness is about sexuality. There were serious aspects of it- it was National Coming Out Day, and Wednesday is the open talk about Open House- but it was mostly a happy declaration of queer presence using humor and recognizably Wesleyan-themed expression [aka chalking and ____-in’s, although those really died in the 70s].

  • Jenn

    Citizen- if everybody at Wes thought the same, then it wouldn’t be a safe haven foe expression. This isn’t a heated debate, nor a threatening one- it’s merely a discussion started by a few complaints, as far as I can tell. The only thing I don’t like about this “debate” is the continued assumption that outspoken queer expression is immediately an activism and awareness effort. The objectors are assuming there’s seriousness and true queer-student-body representation behind the harmless, and occasionally immature, statements made. They should lighten up by realizing “that community” is also able to lighten up.

    I saw the things around campus as a way to show visitors the open and non-oppression obsessed side of parts of our queer community that can comfortably make a self-parody. If you *really* want to see significance, fine: it was a joking “rebellion” against having a hard to notice queer presence on campus. The chalking and kiss-in weren’t trying to be representative of the queers, but a fun “we’re here we’re queer” event that invited people to see a light-hearted, ridiculous, probably giggly scene. The scene was sexual because, well, queerness is about sexuality. There were serious aspects of it- it was National Coming Out Day, and Wednesday is the open talk about Open House- but it was mostly a happy declaration of queer presence using humor and recognizably Wesleyan-themed expression [aka chalking and ____-in’s, although those really died in the 70s].

  • citizen

    it’s terrifying that at wesleyan, supposedly one of the few safe havens for expression of all forms that we need to have this debate.

  • citizen

    it’s terrifying that at wesleyan, supposedly one of the few safe havens for expression of all forms that we need to have this debate.

  • Student

    I like how people are assuming that the people who did the chalkings are one cohesive group…

  • Student

    I like how people are assuming that the people who did the chalkings are one cohesive group…

  • anon ymous

    Okay, seriously, stop whining. It’s chalk on the ground. It’s harmless. If you found it offensive, you either wanted to be offended or you’re a wuss.
    If you seriously think that chalking is immature and shouldn’t be done simply because it’s banned by the administration… well, if you’ve never had a drink under the age of 21, I guess you have a leg to stand on. Hell, that’s actually illegal. But chalking is a pretty common means of spreading a message at many schools.
    And if you’re actually shocked by a make-out session, you seriously need to rethink your life.
    In short, get the sticks out of your asses and suck it up.

  • anon ymous

    Okay, seriously, stop whining. It’s chalk on the ground. It’s harmless. If you found it offensive, you either wanted to be offended or you’re a wuss.
    If you seriously think that chalking is immature and shouldn’t be done simply because it’s banned by the administration… well, if you’ve never had a drink under the age of 21, I guess you have a leg to stand on. Hell, that’s actually illegal. But chalking is a pretty common means of spreading a message at many schools.
    And if you’re actually shocked by a make-out session, you seriously need to rethink your life.
    In short, get the sticks out of your asses and suck it up.

  • anon

    #17, you’re right to say that it’s pretty unlikely that anyone would construe “tremble heterosexual swine” as a threat, especially in this context. However, their intent to subvert a homophobic slur comes off as a bit hackneyed to me, especially given the reasons National Coming Out Day exist, both generally (raising awareness and etc) and specifically (Matthew Shepard’s murder).

  • anon

    #17, you’re right to say that it’s pretty unlikely that anyone would construe “tremble heterosexual swine” as a threat, especially in this context. However, their intent to subvert a homophobic slur comes off as a bit hackneyed to me, especially given the reasons National Coming Out Day exist, both generally (raising awareness and etc) and specifically (Matthew Shepard’s murder).

  • anonymous

    as a straight student, I really didn’t find the chalkings outrageous at all. if the world treats queers outrageously 24/7 then I think we can allow the queers on this campus one day to chalk some crazy around this campus and blow off some steam. just smile at it and understand the (fun) spirit in which it’s done.
    people who were “offended” by the “tremble heterosexual swine” chalkings seriously need to lighten up – it’s not a legitimate threat! are you now afraid that a gay person will put a knife to your head, call you a swine, and force you to tremble? really?
    I agree that the make-out session was for shock value only, but there’s nothing wrong with that, IMO. it’s a one-time thing.
    I love the queers at this school.

  • anonymous

    as a straight student, I really didn’t find the chalkings outrageous at all. if the world treats queers outrageously 24/7 then I think we can allow the queers on this campus one day to chalk some crazy around this campus and blow off some steam. just smile at it and understand the (fun) spirit in which it’s done.
    people who were “offended” by the “tremble heterosexual swine” chalkings seriously need to lighten up – it’s not a legitimate threat! are you now afraid that a gay person will put a knife to your head, call you a swine, and force you to tremble? really?
    I agree that the make-out session was for shock value only, but there’s nothing wrong with that, IMO. it’s a one-time thing.
    I love the queers at this school.

  • Student

    11: IT’S NOT ABOUT WESLEYAN. queers are tortured and killed every single day in every part of the world. why dont YOU grow up and expand your myopic attention outside of the campus bubble?

  • Student

    11: IT’S NOT ABOUT WESLEYAN. queers are tortured and killed every single day in every part of the world. why dont YOU grow up and expand your myopic attention outside of the campus bubble?

  • a different student

    yeah that was completely unfair…its about time we had a heterosexual makeout party in the library!!

  • a different student

    yeah that was completely unfair…its about time we had a heterosexual makeout party in the library!!

  • Braille

    warm heart cockles. challllllkkkkkk!!!!!!

  • student

    furthermore, like the make-out party in the library, it seems like their intent was simply shock-value. what good is this doing for the cause? it seems like it would be better to educate and make people aware of the situation rather than these silly public shows. what if the hetrosexual community decided to write these thing – how would that be taken?

  • student

    furthermore, like the make-out party in the library, it seems like their intent was simply shock-value. what good is this doing for the cause? it seems like it would be better to educate and make people aware of the situation rather than these silly public shows. what if the hetrosexual community decided to write these thing – how would that be taken?

  • student

    some of the chalkings were over the line and an offensive attack against hetrosexuals. should this really be the publicity they’re looking for? if they’re going to chalk, they should keep it positive and constructive, otherwise there’s no point.

  • student

    some of the chalkings were over the line and an offensive attack against hetrosexuals. should this really be the publicity they’re looking for? if they’re going to chalk, they should keep it positive and constructive, otherwise there’s no point.

  • Student

    Clearly a bunch of adolescent adults. You are not oppressed at Wesleyan, and if you feel marginalized it is because the best way you can express yourself is through an immature stunt like chalking. Please grow up.

  • Student

    Clearly a bunch of adolescent adults. You are not oppressed at Wesleyan, and if you feel marginalized it is because the best way you can express yourself is through an immature stunt like chalking. Please grow up.

  • student

    What is Wesleyan’s policy on chalking now? Is the moratorium still in place?

  • student

    What is Wesleyan’s policy on chalking now? Is the moratorium still in place?

  • yael

    national coming out day was created to commemorate Matthew Shephard, the victim of a hate crime who died 11 years ago today. Of course some people find this offensive (though I find it beautiful)but if everyone agreed, we wouldn’t need free speech. and the idea that people shouldn’t make their voices heard because their ideas are not “comparatively important”…that’s just un-American

  • yael

    national coming out day was created to commemorate Matthew Shephard, the victim of a hate crime who died 11 years ago today. Of course some people find this offensive (though I find it beautiful)but if everyone agreed, we wouldn’t need free speech. and the idea that people shouldn’t make their voices heard because their ideas are not “comparatively important”…that’s just un-American

  • Student

    The same thing that give you the right to chalk. There is chalk and there is ground and you have something to say. I’m pretty sure they are inviting you to chalk as well, not declaring it as an exclusive privilege.

  • Student

    The same thing that give you the right to chalk. There is chalk and there is ground and you have something to say. I’m pretty sure they are inviting you to chalk as well, not declaring it as an exclusive privilege.

  • student

    “what gives them the right to chalk?”

    The First Amendment?

  • student

    “what gives them the right to chalk?”

    The First Amendment?

  • Man X

    Keep up the good work! I was so happy to see this.

  • Man X

    Keep up the good work! I was so happy to see this.

  • smontgomery ’06

    This is exactly what happened in 2000, when I visited (back when chalking was accepted). My family found it quite amusing and that’s how I ended up at Wes. Aww…

  • smontgomery ’06

    This is exactly what happened in 2000, when I visited (back when chalking was accepted). My family found it quite amusing and that’s how I ended up at Wes. Aww…

  • current student

    what makes their cause more important than all of the other ones on campus? NOTHING.

    I did find some of the chalking offensive and hope it doesn’t continue. what gives them the right to chalk?

  • current student

    what makes their cause more important than all of the other ones on campus? NOTHING.

    I did find some of the chalking offensive and hope it doesn’t continue. what gives them the right to chalk?

  • water

    Everyone finds different issues comparatively important. Queer support groups this semester seem to be doing a great job of raising awareness about an issue that the students involved are clearly passionate about.
    Chalking, despite any school rules, is an easy, harmless way to get attention, which seems to be the goal of whatever groups are involved.
    Perhaps another poster buried in the hundreds posted around campus would have suited their “comparatively less important” cause?

  • water

    Everyone finds different issues comparatively important. Queer support groups this semester seem to be doing a great job of raising awareness about an issue that the students involved are clearly passionate about.
    Chalking, despite any school rules, is an easy, harmless way to get attention, which seems to be the goal of whatever groups are involved.
    Perhaps another poster buried in the hundreds posted around campus would have suited their “comparatively less important” cause?

  • Annoyed Detracter

    On the other hand, I found it fairly obnoxious that they felt their message was comparatively important enough to break explicit school rules and not simply use the other methods methods of getting attention the rest of the school seems well adjusted to doing.

  • Annoyed Detracter

    On the other hand, I found it fairly obnoxious that they felt their message was comparatively important enough to break explicit school rules and not simply use the other methods methods of getting attention the rest of the school seems well adjusted to doing.

  • Alum

    Glad to see that chalking (in precisely the form that Bennet tried to ban years ago) still lives! Wooo :) thanks, current students!

  • Alum

    Glad to see that chalking (in precisely the form that Bennet tried to ban years ago) still lives! Wooo :) thanks, current students!