“Do I Sound Gay?”: My Takeaway

On November 5th, Varsity Theatre showed a screening of the David Thorpe documentary “Do I Sound Gay?” This documentary focuses on the stereotypical “gay voice” that many people use to identify a man as homosexual, something which the director had trouble dealing with himself. While I can’t speak for gay, male community, I can speak on what I learned from the film (which I recommend to everyone).

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What is Social Justice?

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As I contemplated what to write my first Campus Y blog post on, I thought about what I love about the Campus Y in the first place. For me, it is a necessary establishment that I never had before. In high school, I never really know what “social justice” meant. I was a smart kid, so I’m pretty sure I could’ve strung it together if asked. But it wasn’t until coming to Carolina and becoming a part of this wonderful family that I realized what social justice really means, and more importantly, what it means to me.

First-years (potentially older students) might be in the same boat I was in. This whole concept of one organization constantly working towards the goal of social justice was foreign to me, and I really had to immerse myself in it to understand it completely. Most sources define social justice as “promoting a just society by challenging injustice and valuing diversity.” No place on Carolina’s campus does a better job of doing that than the Campus Y. Through each subcommittee, injustice is challenged. Whether it be through Nourish hosting Hunger Lunch in the Pit, and raising awareness for global poverty, or through HYPE turning UNC students into education advocates for kids in Carrboro. And valuing diversity is just a given. No other place on campus can you find such a myriad of different people brought together by a similar passion, really getting along. Take a look at the other largest organizations on campus. Not to point any fingers, but the exec boards are all pretty whitewashed. Even when you look beyond the faces on the website, students involved are typically of the same something, be it race, gender, sexuality, or the like. The Campus Y is just a hodgepodge of literally all types of people. And that’s what makes it such a magical, warm place. When I walk around campus and see my friends from the Y, my outside friends are always confused as to how I met these people who are clearly not in our typical circles. But by opening myself up to such an incredible place, I also opened myself up to incredible people.
Social justice is a tricky concept to pin down. And it’s hard to understand how it applies to your life at Carolina. But it doesn’t take much to see the homelessness problem on Franklin, or the low-income housing in Carrboro, or the self segregation on our own campus. You can just turn on the TV and see the police brutality occurring every day, or the incredible need for immigration reform. And The Campus Y is one building attempting to address these issues and every other one that falls in between. And that is what makes this place truly “the conscience of the university.”