Sunday, February 26, 2006

We support higher learning... just not THAT

DePaul University in Chicago has recently announced that it is going to offer a minor in "Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer" studies. Not surprisingly, many Catholics don't like this, and are calling for its abolishment. The program director disagrees, and notes that many of the classes in the program already were being taught at the school. He's also considering adding a class that would address the Church's stance on homosexuality.

De Paul is a Catholic school, however, it's not a mouthpiece for the Catholic Church. Teaching classes on gay studies is not an acceptance of homosexuality by the Church. I personally think, that as an institution for expanding knowledge, a subject such as this would be a good idea, which is essentially what the program's director, Professor Cestaro asserts.

I really can't think of any strong arguments against the curriculum. I can't imagine people would believe that teaching about gay studies would make people gay - that can't be a serious concern anymore. I mean, I majored in Korean studies in undergrad, and when I finished, I didn't decide I wanted to be Korean.

I think it's a good idea.


Weary Hag said...

Crude as this may sound, my take on this is as follows: Nobody wants to go into battle unarmed - right? Well, if you're going to hate someone for their beliefs or their habits or their sexual preference, I say you'd better arm yourself with as much knowledge on the topic as possible before you pass your final judgement. Who knows, you may actually come away with a more reasonable outlook on it.

Go for it De Paul!

Gramma said...

I tend to agree with Weary Hag. Tolerance is all about learning - and thereby becoming more comfortable with - that which we don't understand. I don't have to become a Mormon, for example, to learn about the Mormon Church and Doctrine, thus becoming more comfortable with Mormons. I use this example, because when I first visited the church I now call "home" there were many people and pamphlets warning me against "those people."
The fact is, we fear/hate what we don't understand. Once we understand, it no longer has power over us.
We don't have to hate people of other cultures, colors, religions, or lifestyles as long as we have the ability to learn about them. Knowledge diminishes fear. You GO, DePaul!

Cassie said...

I took Spanish in high school and when I was done with that class I was still white, therefore it's pretty safe to say if a straight person took a class or earned a degree in homosexuality they wouldn't necessarily turn into a lesbian or gay person.