A group for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students at San Diego State University is stirring up controversy with a proposed name change. The university’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Student Union (LGBTSU) plans to change its name to the Queer Student Union at the start of the 2013-14 school year.
“We’re here and next year, we’re queer,” junior and president-elect Thomas Negron said. Union leaders say using the term queer is the easiest way to encompass all of LGBTSU’s members. It’s also a way to engage more of the community.
“We want people to talk about it,” Negron said. “We want people to be educated about the word. We want people to feel comfortable asking questions about it, because we don’t want people to feel that our organization is stigmatized in anyway.”
The group’s current president, Michael Manacop, said the name change is also a way of shortening the union’s name instead of having to add letters from time to time. “We decided instead of just adding letters, however many letters there are, we should just have an umbrella term,” Manacob said.
Some faculty members expressed reservations about the name change when the university’s newspaper first reported the news. The student body sounds split on the issue, Fox News reported.
“It doesn’t seem like something you’d want to be called,” sophomore Jake Neely said. “I was always taught not to use (certain) words and … that was definitely one of them that shouldn’t really be said in my house.”
Graduating senior Ashley Williams doesn’t have an issue with it. “If they’re changing it themselves, then I don’t see a problem in it,” she said.