As most of you know, I work on a college campus. I am also the advisor to the Gay/Straight alliance on campus, so I usually send out emails about the groups’ activities and invite people to the meetings. Every couple of years there is one or two jackasses that would rather assault me with an anti-gay tirade than just delete the damn emails. I mean, I always add a subject line with it, so they don’t even need to open it! I started getting these back in 2006. Here are the actual emails I was sent after I sent one out about the first meeting of the year:
“I respect other people’s right to be gay. I have many gay friends and even a relative, but I am strait. I think that you guys take it too far with pushing homosexuality on the campus. It gets to the point where I am starting to be irritated by people because of it. Respect my right top be strait and I will respect yours to be gay. No more e-mails please. I think it’s great what you are trying to do, but it’s becoming too much for me. Thank you”
I wrote him back and told him to please just delete my emails, and that I couldn’t take him off the email listserv because it went to all students, and he needed to be able to receive important emails from other people that used it too. He responded with:
“I have repeatedly asked to not recieve e-mail notices for the ******* club. I have asked nicely, I have explained my reasons, but my patience is at an end. I know how the e-mail notices work and INO MORE SEXUALLY BASED E-MAILS EVER. I AM STRAIT AND YOU ARE NOT RESPECTING MY RIGHTS TO NOT BE ADVERTISED TO. I WILL CONSIDER FURTHER E-MAILS HARASSMENT AND GO STRAIT TO THE TOP WITH MY COMPLAINT. YOU ARE PROMOTING HOMOSEXUALITY AND I HAVE THE RIGHT TO NOT BE ADVERTISED TO. THIS HAD BETTER BE THE LAST TIME. NO MORE E-MAILS…EVER”
Well that escalated quickly! Simmer down! I promptly forwarded the emails to my bosses and my IT Department. Everyone supported my decision to not try and take him off the list, and that he probably was in most need of seeing those emails due to his ignorant responses. I mean c’mon! He couldn’t even spell straight correctly! I think I again reiterated that he should simply delete my emails. The last email I got from him was this:
“I am not taking this personally and I do not appreciate the way that I have been treated by those respoinsible for the e-mail process. I do not accept this homosexual solicitation through e-mail and will take further action.”
Oooooo I’m scared! Apparently “taking further action” meant that he would complain a little more, and then eventually leave the school (or graduate – I can’t remember). As I said, that was back in 2006 (and yes, I do have emails saved from almost a decade ago – and longer – don’t judge me! 😉 ) I’m sure there were more like this over the years, but this was the most memorable one. The one I got this year (just last week), was way toned down from those emails 8 years ago. It simply said:
“Please UNSUBSCRIBE me from your email list.”
Well alrighty then. Again, I can’t take you off the list, sorry! You should exercise your right to use your index finger to click the delete button with your mouse. You do not have to read it, but you have to understand that there are people out there – the shy kid who doesn’t know anyone else gay, the activist who wants to create a change, the girl who’s still in the closet due to her parent’s religion – those people, they need to hear that we are here for them. I refuse to be silent because you are not comfortable enough with your own sexuality to ignore an email that clearly doesn’t pertain to you.
Both of these students (and all others I have heard from) are males. I have not once gotten an adverse response from one single female. Not in the entire 13 years I have worked here. Huh. What does that say to you? To me it says these men felt threatened that gay people even exist because in some way it threatened their own sexuality. I’m not a guy, so I don’t know for sure. If there are any males out there reading – what do you think of it?