’Gay Disease’

In response to last issue’s commentary on HIV/AIDS, gay men and people of color, readers say:
BULLS**T!! The racism in the white and gay community has been going on FAR longer than the supposed ‘homophobia’ in the black community so who the f#*k are you kidding?! Until I hear the RACISM address nobody and I mean nobody has a damn thing to say about black people ‘hating’ gays!!
— Lauren, web, Nov. 29

We are each responsible for the oppressions we support. “There is no hierarchy of oppression” – Audre Lorde
— Chris, web, Nov. 29

I love how Lauren refers to the “white and gay community” like they’re the same thing. Sure, Lauren, all black people are straight. Your amazingly articulate argument has moved me.
— Blue, web, Nov. 30

College application

In response to Brett Webb-Mitchell’s Nov. 27 column, a reader responds:
What a breath of fresh air. As if gay students didnt have enough of a tough time growing up in a heterosexual world where their sexual identity is often unintentionally thrown in their faces on a daily basis. It does get better!

I have been a college admission counselor for 24 years. To reinforce Professor Brett Webb-Mitchell’s comments on the essay, it is extremely important not to tell what happened growing up as in …”this happened then this happened..” And, to talk about the struggle, how hard it was, how you had a hard time dealing with the prejudice, speak in postive terms. Describe how you actually handled a specific situation which shows the reader how you have grown from the experience as opposed to just talking about what happened. It is more interesting to read and increases your chances to get in. They are trying to predict your college survivability and your level of maturity when you get to college. Seeing this at the high school level raises this predictability factor. Making the essays tone come across that you are dealing with the prejudice you may feel in constructive ways. The student who starts a Gay and Lesbian club on their campus, the one who calls their peers on their homophobia which they might not even be aware of, the one who spoke metaphorically about when it finally clicked on them that being gay is being normal; one does not have to cow tow to the heterosexual norm.

The essay on your application should be fun and only describe one instance, one time in your life. You should NOT try to pack in as much as you can. Boring. The app is read quickly. Make it an easy read.
And when you finish all that writing and filling out your name, address etc for the 100th time, you will say to yourself, “it will get better!”
— cmarkiemark, web, Nov. 29