Letter To the Editor: 4/16/18

Dear Editor,

Twitter has an odd habit of un­covering people’s’ true colors. Last week, a UW Tacoma stu­dent’s transphobic opinions were brought to light on the platform. The individual has a history of tweeting abhorrent things, but one in particular stood out. “The day a transgender comes to my work is the day I get fired,” they wrote. “Cause I’m calling you what god made you. Idc.”

Someone else caught the tweet, directing it to UW and UW Tacoma’s profiles to ask a crucial question. What are they going to do about it? UW Tacoma’s diver­sity statement reads that the uni­versity “has the responsibility to build and sustain respectful and supportive relationships, through which intolerance, discrimination and social injustice are confront­ed and resolved through non-vio­lent behavior.” It follows then, that this individual’s tweets violate this commitment to a safe, diverse campus and nonviolent action must be taken. However, since the tweet was uncovered, the infa­mous tweeter’s mentions have blown up with a flurry of insults about their looks, race and char­acter. Rather than bring attention to addressing the issue, the com­ment section has developed into a string of clap backs and petty back-and-forth. What started as a call to action has become a com­petition of who can slight each other the best.

I don’t want my school to act as a home for hate. While I respect free speech, I don’t believe it should act as a cover for un­checked, potentially violent senti­ments disguised as opinions. But if we’ve learned anything over the last two years it’s that arguing rarely results in progress. Change results from coordinated confron­tation, not disorganized agitation.

— Danni Derrickson

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