Historical Documents – 1971 ‘Students Consider Organizing Gay Lib’

By Linda Ecksmith
Mar. 19 1971, Oberlin Review

[JPG of original article – 146K]

A common feeling that the College gay community meets with an oppressive type of tolerance and general ignorance of homosexuality prompted the gathering of approximately 40 students in Wilder YM lounge Wednesday to discuss the formation of a Gay Liberation Organization. Occurring in an informal unstructured atmosphere, the discussion revealed several needs for such an organization. Members of the group generally felt those needs to be of a more personal nature than a political one.

Stressing personal, individual, and the general society’s liberation from misconceptions and antiquated notions about homosexuality, many members suggested a counselling [sic] service and information center as ways to meet these needs. Problems such as finding qualified people to serve as counselors and obtaining literature for distribution were discussed. Several discussion participants volunteered to look into these matters as well as take care of such organizational duties as submitting a charter to Student Senate, applying for an office in Wilder, and figuring out an operational budget.

Open to suggestion

Their organizational plans are still tentative, their aims rather general, and the group remains open to suggestion and participation from anyone, regardless of sexual preferences. The next meetings are scheduled for next Monday and Tuesday evenings at 9 p.m. in Wilder. These group meetings will be general discussions [sic] meetings with hopes of raising participants’ consciousness as well as making the general community become more aware and more honest about the situation in Oberlin.