Words hurt people, even if those words were not directed to, or meant as derogatory to another person. Especially in the hallways here at EHHS, what we say as jokes towards our friends can come out hurtful and bring people down around you because of the words origin.
Drew Souza, a senior and GSA president has noticed for a while, the degrading words students use in their vocabulary. Souza mentions that he usually hears this about 3-4 times a week whenever he walks to class, Souza also says,“The one I hear used the most and is the most unnerving one to hear for me would be f**got. I hear it so often and as a person of the LGBT+ community myself, it makes me kind of scared to walk around the school knowing that my classmates think this way. I don’t know if this is just me, but I feel like I can’t really say anything about it, or I’ll be known as the “overly-sensitive” kid, you know? But that’s just my two cents.” .
Souza is not the only one who feels this way, Daniella Portal, senior, national honor society member , and another GSA president says, “The most common slurs I hear are ones directed at the LGBT community. Hearing these words being used creates an uncomfortable and unsafe environment, and it leads to more hate and confusion surrounding the LGBT community.”. The word f**got actually means bundle of sticks, but people use it in a way to bash people of the LGBT+ community the use of this word in our hallways is being used LGBT+ members in our community are scared of coming to this school because of people’s insensitive use of language.
Even if people are not using words like f**got to attack somebody, it doesn’t make it ok to say.” Souza continues, “I have personally, and I know a few people who have themselves. It kinda sucks because people’s words can be really invalidating sometimes.” We all have a right to be here without feeling like we don’t belong, we all need to take others in consideration censor ourselves a bit when it comes to words like this, that degrade a branch of community, we are all equal and should be treating each other with kindness and respect.
Freedom of speech is an amendment, but you can’t use it in a way that can bring harm to others, like the guy who shouted fire in a public movie theater. Although the words our community uses can’t physically harm one another, it puts an emotional toll, like anxiety for instance, people have even gone to extremes and harmed themselves or even commit suicide. All it takes is one cruel comment to turn someone’s world upside down and fall down a dark path. Together we as a community can work on making all of those around us by discontinuing the harsh words we use towards another, no matter what way a derogatory word is used and the initial intention for what the word may be, we can make each other feel comfortable and be accepting of one another, and accept each other's differences. Deep down we all have good hearts and have the power to refrain from hurting one another, and censor our language for the sake of others.