In an effort to speak out against bullying and promote “Spirit Day”, the NSU Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) held an event outside the Don Taft University on Oct. 18.
Members of GSA, other students, and faculty stood covering their eyes, ears, and mouths as a symbol of silencing bullying.
Adriana Bolivar, senior psychology major, and vice president of GSA, hopes that the group helped raise awareness.
“Bullying is a problem that affects many people and it has to be stopped,”she said.
Spirit Day, which started on Oct. 20 of 2010, is a day when people wear purple to show support for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered (LGBT) youth who are victims of bullying. The initiative was created in October 2010, after the publicized bullying-related suicides of gay students, of all ages, across the nation. Its name comes from the purple stripe on the rainbow pride flag, which represents spirit.
Spirit Day extended far beyond NSU. It was recognized nationwide by celebrities, sports leagues, and businesses. Many people and organization turned their Twitter and Facebook profile pictures purple, and sent out messages in support of the LGBT community.
Jonathan Clerge, senior communication studies major, said that people need to become aware of the extreme dangers of bullying and get involved in helping LGBT youth.
“Taking action against bullying is important and that is done through raising awareness of this cause,” said Clerge.
On their website, the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation — a U.S. non-governmental, media-monitering organization — encouraged people to get involved in Spirit Day by taking the “Spirit Day pledge” to wear purple. It also provided a tool for easily turning online profile pictures purple.
Bolivar said that this is not something that should die down. “We need to do anything we can to get student and teachers educated and involved.”
For more information on Spirit Day and to find out more ways to support the LGBT community, visit www.glaad.org/spiritday. To get involved with NSU’s Gay-Straight Alliance contact Adriana Bolivar, vice president of GSA, at firstname.lastname@example.org.