The Centurion

Open Door Club: No More Oppression Here at Bucks!

Liam Brown

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Those wishing to join the fight for LGBTQ+ rights may find themselves drawn to the Open Door Club here at Bucks County Community College, who meet Thursdays from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. and are advised by Sociology Professor Max Probst.

The clubs aim is to discuss global, national, and local issues pertaining to sexual orientation and gender identity and is open to anyone, hence the name.

When asked why he chose to advise the club, Probst stated that he “wanted to support students and help them build leadership skills around programming for the LGBTQ community.”

As a professor that is out on campus, he feels the need to “to build a community of support and understanding for students who may need it.”

The club may be advised by Probst, but he describes the members as “the heart of the club and they provide each other with support and friendship.”

It is these close ties of friendship and support that provide an environment to members so that they can feel “safe and welcomed and respected.  Because this doesn’t always happen in their everyday environment” said Probst, who also stated that on a day to day basis he sees behavior that is both harmful and offensive to people of the LGBTQ + community.

“There are many examples going on globally and nationally that I can use to showcase the need for the Open Door Club, but I will focus on what is going on right here at our school. I walk around this campus and I occasionally hear students openly call each other ‘fag’ as an insult or joke. I have had conversations with trans identified students who are fearful of using the bathroom on campus or who get ‘outed’ by their professors.”

Not only in school but also in the home, LGBTQ+ students find themselves under attack. “I meet with students who tell me that they will be kicked out of their house if they come out because their parents are homophobic.”

Usually centers of education are places where young minds are cultivated to form an open minded and intellectual society that seeks to better both its members and the world, but that is not the case when oppression and hate are present.

The Open Door Club will serve as a safe place for students suffering from oppression to freely discuss the issues that affect them. The organization is open to any that wish to join and is accepting of all.

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Open Door Club: No More Oppression Here at Bucks!