November 18, 2010 Volume CXXVIII Issue 10

Keep it clean, GC

By JONATHAN BALMER
Staff Writer

“Mystery hallway thugs: Anderson Hall is not a game of Super Mario Brothers; stop punching ceiling tiles! Man-up and confess. There are two ways to improve our campus: collaboration or fear. Are you incapable of caring for your fellow man? May fear of punishment persuade you—let penalties rain down like lightning for your disregard of your neighbor! I will be a shameless narc on anyone costing me money; beware if I see you causing damage. I will find you!” I thought this upon reading the notice that the damage of several ceiling tiles on Halloween night will be split among Anderson Hall residents. Yes, here it is: another housing article—with a twist.

Let me digress, I spoke to an Area Coordinator informally about my suggestion last week of rotating bathroom-cleaning responsibilities on weekends to ensure our living conditions are more pleasant. The coordinator said he previously thought of something similar but offered instead the possibility of installing hand-dryers in the bathrooms. Brilliant! With handdryers, we would reduce our environmental impact and eliminate the need for bathroom trash cans. This would provide no option but for students to throw personal trash into the dumpster, creating less mess. Aside from alternative ideas, I heard outright opposition to my previous proposal.

Doubt that students would ever humble themselves, collaborate and use a few minutes of their weekend to take out the trash for their classmates and neighbors is understandable. This concern is reinforced through the aforementioned property damage in Anderson Hall. I wonder if other residences have better respect for their living conditions. Maybe sorority and fraternity houses care for their sisters or brothers enough to refrain from punching ceiling tiles. This speculation aside, my reaction was solely the first paragraph rage. I soon realized, however, this rage was fruitless.

On Saturday I tweeted, “It’s incredible! There’s a custodial worker taking out trash ON THE WEEKEND! I have _never_ seen this happen at Anderson Hall.” My friends quickly restored my cynicism, pointing out Admissions was hosting a “V.I.P Day”— the cleaning was to entice prospective students. I groaned in distrust of humans once again. Later, Terry, my former youth pastor and friend, responded, tweeting, “The servant leader would help them.”

Terry is right. Our disgusting weekend habits are an insult to our custodial staff. They are given two days without work but return to clean much more than two days worth of mess. As a benevolent experiment to assist students and staff, for three weeks (Nov. 20, 21; Dec. 4, 5; Dec. 11, 12, taking Thanksgiving weekend off) I will take out the trash and ensure that the toilets are relatively clean and the floors are free of trash in every bathroom on my floor. I will do this at 9:30 a.m. on Saturdays and 6:30 p.m. on Sundays. Truly, I act babyish around bad stenches; I dread this. I am doing this not to bolster myself but, firstly, to test the difficultly of my proposed plan. Secondly, I will clean, if only for a while, because it is the right thing to do and the first step to improving the environment around me. Like many, we might complain (rage); like some, we can fantasize that egocentric acts of defiance (i.e. a huge party in the quad) will improve Georgetown; like a few, we can invest in a million unglamorous acts of service: picking up the sponge instead of the beer bottle—acting instead of whining.

If you would like to donate cleaning supplies (I have a few items), assist me or begin similar initiatives, please write me: jbalmer0@georgetowncollege.edu. Also, if anyone believes hand-dryers are a good investment contact SGA: gtownsga@gmail.com.

 


 

Letter addresses homosexual life in Christian context

Dear Editor:

The recent suicides of gay teens moved me to think of students currently on Christian campuses who are gay, because that was me many years ago. My four years at my college I lived with that secret, and a fear I was going to hell, pleading with God to change me, afraid to tell anyone.

We are assuring our gay youth that “it gets better.” And it does. I also want you to know you have choices. You didn’t choose to be gay (just as no one “chooses” to be heterosexual), but you can choose how to live with your sexuality.

You can believe homosexuality is a sin and try to change, on your own, by praying or by entering into an “ex-gay” ministry. I tried all three and, speaking from my personal experience, I don’t think one can become “ex-gay” any more than one can become an “ex-heterosexual.”

You can believe that it is not a sin to be gay, except when acted upon. I know gay Christians who accept their orientation and choose celibacy.

You can marry someone of the opposite sex; concealing your same sex attractions, determined they are under control. I know gay men and women who have done that. In each case, after years of suppression, they ended up acting upon their impulses. Inevitably, the lies and secrecy caught up with them, revealed by their own confession or an inappropriate situation they put themselves in. Each of these marriages ended in divorce, the unsuspecting spouse’s life shattered, as well as the children’s.

You can be honest with your future spouse, trusting he or she will be willing to partner in your decision to live heterosexually. I know couples who are doing just that. Publicly, they present themselves as a typical heterosexual couple. I don’t know how they conduct themselves in private.

You can choose to reexamine the scriptures that are used against homosexuals and decide if they are speaking out against same sex attraction as we know it today. You can choose to believe God honors a same sex monogamous committed relationship. You can choose to believe you can be both gay and a Christian.

I lived through years of struggle and anguish after college, trying everything I could to change. The end result was clinical depression and thoughts of suicide.

As the years have passed, I’ve come to trust God does love and accept me as an openly gay man. I do look at those scriptures in a different light. I believe God sanctions any relationship that is committed and monogamous.

I belong to a church, welcomed warmly by the pastor and the congregation. My presence there has generated a dialogue within the church about homosexuality. People have told me that their views on homosexuality have changed because of knowing me, some acknowledging I’m the first gay person that they’ve known.

Our church now has an outreach ministry to let the gay community know our doors are open. That we welcome them and affirm them, their committed relationships and the families they are creating. Know that there are churches, and Christians, who will accept you as you are.

If we are to be judged, it will be by God. Maybe at that time it won’t be a matter of who was right and who was wrong. Maybe God will look at each of us and ask if we lived our lives being true to who we were.

It gets better. You have choices. The decisions you come to are between you and God.

Know that there is a place for you at the table.

Artie Van Why

avanwhy@aol.com

 


 

Editor provides tips for winter survival

By WHITLEY ARENS
Editor-in-Chief

Before I get too far into this article— or into it at all—I just want to make sure that you all saw CAMEL TOE in the paper last week. If you missed it, there it is again. (Don’t feel bad, Tori! Now my name is tied to it too!)

In case you’ve been skimming The Georgetonian this semester, instead of reading every word of every article as you should have been doing, let me quickly catch you up to speed. For the past two weeks, there has been a raging battle on the Opinion page as to whether leggings are, in fact, pants or not. Don’t worry. I’m not planning to revisit this argument.

Also, earlier in the semester, there was a lovely Fall Fashion preview by a Mr. Jacob Pankey in which he used the wardrobe of Dr. Todd Coke as a prime fashion example for readers to strive toward. [Disclaimer: At this point, I would like to add that no part of this article has been read or approved by Mr. Pankey. In fact, he forcefully does not approve or endorse this article.]

Now that I’ve embarrassed myself, caught all of my lovely readers up to speed and cleared Pankey’s name, I guess I can get on with my article. Clearly, fashion and issues of fashion are of the utmost importance to The Georgetonian’s readers. If the readers want it, then I am willing to fill the demand: here’s another fashion article!

With the changing of the seasons upon us, you all knew this was inevitable. Though the last week was absolutely fabulous—and a little annoyingly so—in terms of November weather, this week has brought the cold lower temperatures and icky rain to which those of us living in this portion of the Bible Belt are accustomed this time of year.

And let’s be honest: this downward turn in weather is just the start of a falling spiral which will lead us into snowstorms and ice by finals (most likely).

For this reason, I tend to take a fairly practical approach to winter fashion. My motivations in getting through this last month of the semester aren’t to look cute everyday or to impress the masses with my amazing ability to mix argyle and plaid tastefully. No. My motivations are to survive.

To get through the winter in Kentucky, and the campus-wide walks between classes in said winter, I have two pieces of advice: (1) oodles of outerwear and (2) learn to layer!

When I say “oodles of outerwear,” I mean lots and lots of clothing items which can be used and worn for outer insulation. Examples of outerwear: jackets, sweatshirts, gloves, ski masks, scarves, hats, sunglasses, coats, boots and industrial-strength coveralls. Non-examples of outwear: leggings, bikini tops, leggings, underwear, leggings, flip-flops and leggings. [Author’s note: Jeggings would count as outerwear, but please spare yourself the embarrassment. They are “so Fall!”]

Okay, now that you know what outerwear is, you should acquire at least two of every item on my outerwear list. Except for the industrialstrength coveralls: you’ll need three of those. You should also box up your leggings for the winter. Or burn them. Depending on which Georgetonian article won you over.

Now you’re ready for step two: layering. Basically the key is to wear as many of these outerwear items at one time while still maintaining optimum motor skill functionality. In doing this, make sure that you can still sit in chairs and fit through doorways. There is such a thing as too much layering. Also, layer so that you can peel layers off indoors so that you won’t be at risk for suffering from heat stroke.

I know it’s a simple plan, but that’s really all you need to survive. Don’t overestimate yourself. Getting through the winter Whitley-style will take skill. I hope you’re up for it.

For instance, I typed this whole article while wearing gloves (a creative utilization of my outerwear indoors). How many of you could do that?

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