Living@Guelph - Choose Your Own Adventure Living
Homophobia Affects Everyone's Life
By Dan McCartney

Homophobia Does Exist in Our Community
Guelph generally provides a positive environment for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered individuals with such available resources as Guelph Queer Equality, which has been operating at the University of Guelph since 1972. However, homophobia still exists in many forms, from derogatory jokes and remarks to graffiti and harassment. Hate crimes do occur on our campus and are most often seen in the form of homophobic graffiti. Incidences of offensive graffiti have been written on the walls in various buildings and even spray-painted on the cannon. One shocking incident occurred after a hate crimes vigil in 2000, where the message "AIDS cures fags" was spray-painted on Winegard Walk in front of Johnston Hall. Such incidents demonstrate the need to confront homophobia in our community with the goal of creating a safe and positive environment for all LGBTQ individuals.

10 Ways Homophobia affects Straight People:

  • Homophobia forces us to act "macho" if we are a man or "feminine" if we are a woman. This limits our individuality and self-expression.
  • Homophobia puts pressure on straight people to act aggressively and angrily towards LBGTQ people.
  • Homophobia makes it hard to be close friends with someone of the same sex.
  • Homophobia often strains family and community relationships.
  • Homophobia causes youth to become sexually active before they are ready in order to prove they are "normal".
  • Homophobia prevents vital information on sex and sexuality to be taught in schools.
  • Homophobia can be used to hurt a straight person if they "appear to be gay".
  • Homophobia makes it hard for straight people and LGBTQ people to be friends.
  • Homophobia along with racism, sexism, classism, etc. makes it hard to put an end to AIDS.
  • Homophobia makes it hard to appreciate true diversity and the unique traits that are not mainstream or "normal".