IRVINE, California (Christian Examiner) – When it comes to "extra-curricular" activities, the University of California Irvine wants to make sure students are aware of the best options. So the school is letting students know where to find the best gay clubs and bars in Southern California.
The College Fix reports the school's LGBT Resource Center website links to 18 of the sites across Orange County, Long Beach, Los Angeles and San Diego, as well encourages students to visit Palm Springs for a gay retreat. One listing in San Diego notes, "The adventurous go 'au naturale' at Black's Beach near UCSD."
Other venues, with names like the Velvet Lounge and TigerHeat, promote specials such as "Sunday Drag Brunches," "Transgirl Tuesdays," and "Planet Queer." Christian Examiner cannot reprint some of the event titles because they are vulgar in nature.
The listing of nightclubs that provide welcoming spaces for the LGBT community is just one page of a website that also includes links to academic, health, counseling, spiritual, recreational and programming resources as well as opportunities for student life and leadership involvement on campus. Hosting one page on a website costs the taxpayers virtually nothing.
Asked why the university had promoted the off-campus bars and clubs for homosexuals, the university issued a statement claiming "the extra-curricular life of its students" is an important part of the college experience.
"The listing of nightclubs that provide welcoming spaces for the LGBT community is just one page of a website that also includes links to academic, health, counseling, spiritual, recreational and programming resources as well as opportunities for student life and leadership involvement on campus. Hosting one page on a website costs the taxpayers virtually nothing," the statement said.
There are those who oppose the use of college resources to promote the LGBT lifestyle, but not for the reasons most would think. According to the College news website, one student said it was time that "UC Irvine stops trying to put us into categories and stops creating division."
"If the school is going to have this taxpayer-funded resource, it should be for every student, not just a select few," student Koosha Azartash told The College Fix.
The school's LGBT Resource Center not only supports those practicing the homosexual or transgender lifestyle. It also promotes it through campus events such as "TransAction Week" and "Queer History Week."
The university has also offered "LGBT housing" to gay students since 2010.
"For first-years, the 'Open House' dorm will be located in Isengard in Middle Earth. The Open House will be a non-judgmental space where the diversity of identities and gender expressions are celebrated. It will provide opportunities for personal development to flourish in a gender-free and transgender-friendly living environment. This gender-neutral hall allows for both same and opposite gender roommate pairings," a statement from the school said six years ago.
The school also offers gay housing for returning students. The 'Spectrum House' offers a welcoming space for students to have cultural experiences for "lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, queer, questioning students and their allies."