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Vandals Leave Anti-Gay Graffiti

By Ariel R. Frank

Dunster House residents awoke yesterday to find anti-gay graffiti scrawled on two walls in G-entry, the main entrance into the house.

"FAGGOT!" was written in black marker next to the House Crew notice board. On another wall, the words "FAG," "PUSSY!," and "Mother-fucker" were scribled.

A poster on the bulletin across from the graffiti advertised "Queer Harvard Month."

Jane I. Aceituno '98, co-chair of Bisexual, Gay, Lesbian and Transgendered Students' Association (BGLTSA), said she believes the incident is related to the first-ever "Queer Harvard Month" and to the Queer Politics dinner held in Dunster House on Saturday night.

About 30 people, including national gay rights leaders, attended the dinner, which was part of a conference at the Kennedy School of Government on gay politics. (Please see related story for full coverage of conference.)

Some Dunster residents taped pieces of white paper below the graffiti with a note asking people to write their responses to the incident.

"We're all gay and we're all coming to get you," one of the responses stated. "Wait for me in your next nightmare."

Another not written on the paper said, "When we give these people an audience we only make them happier. IGNORE IT AND PAINT OVER IT AND GET ON WITH REAL LIFE."

Aceituno said she believes that having more public events addressing gay issues may have led to the incident.

"It makes homophobic people angry to see gay people be so visi- ble," said Aceituno, who is a Dunster resident. "I think they would rather see us be in the closet."

Dunster House is known for having a large gay population, but relations between students in the house have been good in the past, according to Aceituno.

Moon Duchin '97, who lives in Dunster G entry, said she has noticed friction in the house this year.

Duchin, the former co-chair of BGLTSA, said Dunster has the largest BGLTSA membership of all the houses by a factor of two, but said this is now changing because of randomization.

"A friend of mine heard some guys in the courtyard making lesbian jokes," she said. "I knew people who were randomized into Dunster and said, 'Isn't that where all the gays live?"'

Kerry Walk, the designated tutor for sexual orientation issues in Dunster House, said the House tutors will need to think about having sensitivity training for residents.

Although Walk said the atmosphere in Dunster House has always been "very accepting," she added that "cliques are worse this year."

Council Condemns Graffiti

In a unanimous vote, the Undergraduate Council passed a resolution condemning the graffiti last night.

Calling the graffiti "a cowardly act of hatred," the resolution stated, "Anonymous hate speech is not an acceptable form of discourse in a college community, and is often a precursor to violent acts.

Dunster House is known for having a large gay population, but relations between students in the house have been good in the past, according to Aceituno.

Moon Duchin '97, who lives in Dunster G entry, said she has noticed friction in the house this year.

Duchin, the former co-chair of BGLTSA, said Dunster has the largest BGLTSA membership of all the houses by a factor of two, but said this is now changing because of randomization.

"A friend of mine heard some guys in the courtyard making lesbian jokes," she said. "I knew people who were randomized into Dunster and said, 'Isn't that where all the gays live?"'

Kerry Walk, the designated tutor for sexual orientation issues in Dunster House, said the House tutors will need to think about having sensitivity training for residents.

Although Walk said the atmosphere in Dunster House has always been "very accepting," she added that "cliques are worse this year."

Council Condemns Graffiti

In a unanimous vote, the Undergraduate Council passed a resolution condemning the graffiti last night.

Calling the graffiti "a cowardly act of hatred," the resolution stated, "Anonymous hate speech is not an acceptable form of discourse in a college community, and is often a precursor to violent acts.

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