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A Guide to LGBTQ+ Inclusion on Campus, Post-PULSE

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Edited By Virginia Stead

The research in A Guide to LGBTQ+ Inclusion on Campus, Post-PULSE is premised on the notion that, because we cannot choose our sexual, racial, ethnic, cultural, political, geographic, economic, and chronological origins, with greater advantage comes greater responsibility to redistribute life’s resources in favor of those whose human rights are compromised and who lack the fundamental necessities of life. Among these basic rights are access to higher education and to positive campus experiences. Queer folk and LGBTQ+ allies have collaborated on this new text in response to the June 16, 2016 targeted murder of 49 innocent victims at the PULSE nightclub, Orlando, Florida. Seasoned and novice members of the academy will find professional empowerment from these authors as they explicitly discuss multiple level theory, policy, and strategies to support LGBTQ+ campus inclusion. Their work illuminates how good, bad, and indeterminate public legislation impacts LGBTQ+ communities everywhere, and it animates multiple layers of campus life, ranging from lessons within a three-year-old day care center to policy-making among senior administration. May the power of well-chosen words continue to deepen our understanding, clarify our communication, and empower us all as pro-LGBTQ+ campus activists.

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Chapter Twenty-One: “How Do You Ally?” Redefining the Language We Use in Ally Education (Laura D. Gentner / Kristen Altenau Keen)

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CHAPTER TWENTY-ONE

“How Do You Ally?”

Redefining the Language We Use in Ally Education

LAURA D. GENTNER AND KRISTEN ALTENAU KEEN



INTRODUCTION

In the days following the mass shooting at Orlando’s Pulse nightclub on June 12, 2016 that resulted in 49 people’s deaths and 53 people’s injuries, social media feeds were filled with articles on how to be an ally for the LGBTQ+ community in the wake of such a tragedy. While vigils were held across the country in solidarity with the LGBTQ+ community (and the Latinx community to a lesser degree), the country engaged in conversations about prejudice, xenophobia, causes of and responses to violence, hate crimes versus terrorism, privileged, oppressed, and intersecting identities, access to firearms, and mental health. These conversations took place in the context of a larger national discourse including police shootings of black people, transphobic restrictions on public restroom use, and racially, socio-economically, and ideologically charged political primaries.

Calls for social justice are more fervent. The national discourse continues to react to increases in visible violence connected to systems of oppression. Identities are being understood in more intricate, nuanced, and overlapping ways.

As the pendulum swings toward awareness of social justice issues, there is an equal and opposite reaction when those with long-held privileges resist losing them. The traditional lines between oppressed people and their allies are blurred. A new concept of allyship is critical to...

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