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| Thursday, October 01, 2009

"Many people will ask how anyone who works at Morehouse, with all it's gay students and staff could hold such ignorant views.

Here's how: Ignorance comes from not knowing. I used to work at Morehouse in the President's Office with Sandra Bradley. She was a sweet woman, a grandmother. We talked about everything.. except my sexuality.

Sandra has been surrounded by gay men for years. Sadly, none of us were out to her. When I worked there, I had just moved into a new loft, and had a boyfriend and a ton of bills to take care of.

Just a few years before landing a job in the President's office, I helped lead a media campaign that brought the near-fatal beating of a Morehouse student to the attention of the national media.

Now, as a new staff member in the President's Office I could have set an example for so many students, but instead I was worried about losing my new job.

This is why being out ALL the time is so important. What we keep, money and jobs, is never worth what we lose in the end.

After a few months at Morehouse, I "came out" on campus and helped support the gay students association, Safe Space. I wish I would have done more.

I believe that God made me this way, but back then I didn't trust God enough to make a way for me to live in my truth. But I can testify today that God can do that and more.

It saddened me to hear that, after working for years at Morehouse, this otherwise good womyn was fired for one ignorant act. This is an especially tough time for anyone to lose their job, and scapegoating one individual just sidesteps a much larger issue.

I think of all the opportunities I and the other gay staff at Morehouse missed to have uncomfortable, but educational conversations with Ms. Bradley, and other employees like her, and I begin to feel personally responsible for what has happened.

Today, I pray for a spirit of understanding and courage at my old job.

-Khalid Kamau responds to the recent anti-gay scandal at Morehouse College reported yesterday on loldarian.com. He is an activist, founding member of Second Sunday Atlanta; an organization for black gay men and a former Morehouse College employee