LGBTQ+ history month needs more support

Zach Blair

LGBTQ+ History Month is a critical time. The observance, running from the beginning to the end of the month of October, provides an appropriate window for celebration for those who fall into the ever-expanding history of pride month.  

Not only is this time crucial for great proportions of people across the globe, but it is also an important period on Augustana’s campus. With an array of events throughout the month, Augustana is definitely not lacking in its representation of the LGBTQ+ community. 

Simply walking from my classes to the Gerber Center, I have witnessed Augustana’s push for inclusivity with its promotion of the events taking place during this month. The lobby area of the Thomas Tredway Library, for example, is a wonderful sight of this push.

During my walks through there, placed on the overflowing bulletins, I’ve seen colorful posters that detail what is going on this month and where it’s going down. The calendar that incessantly strikes my eye is the one with a glittery rainbow background, the events for the month detailed in neat little boxes across the page. 

Along with those beautifully designed posters, on my daily walks through the Brew, I’ve seen tables that promote this vital month. They scream “Augie Ally” as I saunter past. Little, miniature pride flags are settled in a row atop the sizable LGBT rainbow flag that adorns the entire surface of the table. 

All of this boosting and publication has provided me ─ a person who is usually unaware of the significance of this month ─ with a sudden inspiration to get involved and spread the emphasis of this occasion. Because once we can collectively do that, our community at Augustana will surely be strengthened. 

Therefore, I believe that this effort is important to those who already understand the criticality of this time and those who do not. Sometimes, because of prior commitments of time or energy, we students lose the will to really drive ourselves to get involved and acclimated during these times of significance. 

It’s a shame, because as I looked back through old Observer articles and other Augustana archives to see if the push to commemorate and honor the importance of this month was celebrated in the past, and I was faced with a whole lot of nothing, which, to me, is also known as a degree of misrepresentation. So, I say to the students of Augustana, “Wake up! Get involved!” 

Daisy Moran, assistant director in the office of student inclusion and diversity, has been one of the main organizers of this innovative initiative for LGBTQ+ History Month on Augustana’s campus. Through her, she’s developed many of the events partaking within this designated time. One of those activities was inviting Chase Norris, founder and executive director of Clock, Inc. LGBT Community Center, which is established in the Quad Cities. Their services include counseling, community groups, transgender clothing swap, chest binders and so much more. For students, it’s another great way to get involved. 

And as for those other events, there’s no shortage! Students should keep their eyes peeled on the same walks that I take, looking out for everything that’s scheduled on campus for this special month. 

Lots of student organizations, including Dat Poetry Lounge and the Multicultural Programming Board, are throwing events to spread awareness, highlight importance and show care during this meaningful time.

Finally, my hope is that Augustana students can realize this window of time so that they can show and spread their interest of all that’s being represented. And maybe by showing up and getting involved, the effort will be remembered and appreciation throughout campus will be seen by faculty and future students alike. 

And, sure, for some, all of this may not be enough — but it surely is a step in the right direction.