Cheers to UMC's GLBTA Group and Awareness Training and Jeers to the lack of a mute button in life UMC's GLBTA Group and Awareness Training   

    Cheers to UMC's Lorna Hollowell and the GLBTA – gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgendered and allies – group for bringing awareness to their cause through peaceful and fun methods. GLBTA rights are one of the most highly-debated and controversial political topics in the country and, progressively, the world. Whether you're for or against it, it's good and vital to have a place for people of any sexuality to feel safe, comfortable and free to express their opinions, trials and struggles without the fear of being bullied, judged and/ or ostracized.   

    UMC's GLBTA group recently held a program called, "That's So Gay... Really?!" At this event, speaker and GLBTA activist/trainer T. Todd Masman spoke about society of both the gay and straight communities, word association and how it imposes either a negative or positive light, what individuals can do both short and long term to help aid the cause for awareness and, in time, acceptance and livened up the discussion with some GLBTA Jeopardy. The event was open to the campus as well as the public; Crookston High School's GSA Group attended as special guests.    

    Hats off to UMC's GLBTA Group and, really, any GLBTA rights activist group. It is through groups like these that ideas are spread, myths and misconceptions are brought to an end and a sense of acceptance is spread. While groups and events like these are great tokens and "diamonds in the rough," it is clear there is still a lot of work to go before rights will fully be granted. However, these are vital steps in the right direction, and should be commended and celebrated.
                                                – Torrie Greer, student staff writer the lack of a mute button in life   

    Sometimes people say things to others that are mean and hurtful. It happens in homes, schools, work, and public places. Friends, family, classmates, co-workers...they all can say things that make us want to turn the other way.    

    "Why can't you just stop being lazy and do something with your life?" "Why are you dressed like that?" "I bet that person doesn't have any friends." "That person is weird." It’s constant.            

    Whether it is directed toward you or someone else, wouldn't it be nice to push a mute button so you didn't have to hear that kind of negativity? We all have busy lives these days, it seems, and to add on top of that the endless negative opinions of others or "not so nice" comments is not how we want to start or end the day.    

    What happened to, "If you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all?" Before you say something mean, think twice about how it will affect the people around you. It might make or break someone's day. Or worse.
                                                                              – Jess Bengtson