Oh Landfair. The Avenue of Frats and apartments composed of entire sports teams. It is expected to be loud, rowdy, wild, crazy, drunk, and filled with debauchery, but do people really expect its inhabitants to be ostentatiously sexist and homophobic? From much observed experience, being wild and drunk does not somehow equate to spewing prejudice and hatred. So what accounts for this dangerous and disgusting environment? Alcohol does not create slut shaming or formulate homophobic slurs.
Yet somehow as I am trying to sleep, I hear drunk men screaming “GIVE HIM A BLOWJOB!” to a woman one night, and the next night I hear men yelling at another man saying “YOU’RE GAY AS FUCK DUDE.” As a campus, is this really what we consider normalcy? Does the sometimes subtle, but most of the time obvious, sexism and homophobia that still permeate a large portion of society creep out at night and take over the streets of Westwood?
And as this hatred seeps onto the dimly lit street of Landfair, does it somehow take on the mask of darkness which precedes the “vindication” of aggressive abuse and intolerance? Would these same people comfortably defend the use of these slurs in front of their professors, who most likely see them as qualified and hard working students?
As a feminist sitting alone in her room listening to the virulent noise of life outside, I don’t know what to do. Even in my own bed I am subjected to silence, as darkness and fear mock my inability to fight back, and highlight the discrepancy between the ideal of UCLA and its actual students. Maybe this speaks to the broader culture, and if so, at 20 years old, I truly am afraid of the dark.