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Re: “Harding paper covers HU Queer Press

Norma Bates -
sadly there's some truth to what you say about Harding's educational value. I saw one or 2 things that concerned me when i was there in the 80s, although over all the education was very good back then, except for one glaring hole in the Math department, that particular program was very good, and not easy. It would appear things have declined in the 20+ years since I was there.

Posted by goonybird on 06/11/2011 at 10:34 PM

Re: “Harding paper covers HU Queer Press

Harding Grad...and you others from Harding....
I too graduated from Harding, 1989, BBA....
However, i have a very different perspective. I did not grow up in the deep south, nor did I grow up in a Christian household, let alone the ultra conservative type that the Church of Christ, particularly in the deep south, represents. I grew up just outside pitsburgh, ironically not far from where the movement that became the Churches of Christ and Disciples of Christ originated. I also realize that the vast majority of Harding students DID grow up in a CofC household, many of them in the deep south. The thing is - that perspective made me realize a few things. There IS a lot of intolerance in the deep south, not in the CofC or Harding in particular, so I don't think there's any reason to single them out, but it permeates them as well as it does most churches and religious people in the deep south. Most people who end up at Harding have spent their lives having their parents talk to them about going to a christian school, finding a good christian girl to marry, raising their own set of good christian children,.....etc etc etc. Those few who find themselves with homosexual tendencies too many times are in a position where they don't realize they're NOT the only ones. Their only perspective is a very conservative christian one, that homosexuality is a sin, whether they chose to be that way or not. Nor do their parents or friends realize such things. As a result, they're normally terrified to tell anyone...unless they're lucky enough to find another gay person..which they often dont till they're adults. And honestly, at least with the CofC, there's a strong message of 'sticking to the program' for lack of a better term. Myself, i encountered a surprising amount of hostility when I publically voiced a lack of understanding of the reasons behind one of the common doctrines espoused by the church while I was at Harding. And I also at Harding in..87? 88? gave an anonymous interview with a Little Rock based newspaper about this same basic issue - treatment of gays at Harding. Basically he said, "i;m a christian - i have a strong sense of values and morality, and I'm gay. Sex outside marriage is across the board en expellable offense there, so like straight people do, I avoid it when school's in session" Sadly, the school found out who he, didn't expel him, but told him he wasn't welcome to come back the following semester.

Now considering all that, i want you to think about a young person raised in the dep south in a conservative christian household. Their background doesn't allow them to realize there are any options many times, and their background also makes them realize if they talk openly about their tendencies, it will cause a LOT of strife in their family, and maybe far beyond. And they themselves, nor do the people around them, often stop to think that regardless of whether acting on it is a choice, being gay is NOT a choice. If you doubt that - ask yourself - do you think you could up and decide tomorrow to be attracted to your own gender? or to 4 year olds? horses? or to . i think for 99% of the people reading this, its safe to say the answer is 'no'. I want you to think about this question. When it boils down to it, this is the core of the problem. They don't chose the attraction. Too many people act as if they do.
Ok, so I think its time to put way the soapbox.....

Another Harding grad...

Posted by goonybird on 06/11/2011 at 10:22 PM


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