Mainstreaming Violence events highlights the struggles of LGBTQ+ students

Ingrid Schmidt

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AU Eagles for Pride is co-sponsoring, Mainstreaming Violence: Affect, Activism, and Queer Media Politics on November 15 starting at 7 p.m. in the Ridenour Room.

Speaker Dr. Helis Sikk will highlight some of the violence faced by LGBTQ+ people and how the media affects the perception of that violence.

Eagles for Pride President, Julia Swanson Hines said that the event is will be a great way for everyone in attendance to better understand the struggles of the LGBTQ+ community.

“Since most students at AU are straight, I hope that those who attend the event are able to learn how our society perpetuates homophobic and transphobic ideas even to today, and even in situations where stories, ideas, or actions seem to be inclusive or progressive,” Swanson Hines said.

Swanson Hines believes that speaker Dr. Helis Sikk will bring a great deal of expertise and insight to the topic.

“Dr. Sikk is an incredible academic and activist who has credentials that would make any gender theory nerd excited,” she said. “From what I’ve read, Dr. Sikk has a great breadth of knowledge surrounding the relationship between violence and the queer community, including the role the media has played and continues to play to this day.”

The event will give students a new perspective on the struggles of the LGBTQ+ community according to Swanson Hines.

“On a personal level, I think it’s important for AU students to better understand what a sizable portion of their peers goes through daily and what they’re faced with,” said Swanson Hines.

The event will also give comfort to the LGBTQ+ students attending the event, she said.

“ It would give our LGBTQ+ students solace knowing that they have straight allies in an area that tends to scream at them that they shouldn’t exist,” Swanson Hines said.

Overall Swanson Hines hopes that students will learn to be supportive towards LGBTQ+ students.

“Mostly, I hope that students learn what it’s like to be an LGBTQ+ person living in America because I feel like that’s one of the most effective ways for people to become sympathetic towards any group’s plights–becoming educated in what it means to be oppressed in small, but encompassing ways,” Swanson Hines said.

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