"I've Thrown Away the Key to the Closet"

The Support Group Alliance, 1989-1991

The Gay Discussion Group advertises for the last time in the Concordiensis during 1983, and appears for the last time in the Freshman Record as an extracurricular campus activity for the Class of 1988 (published in 1984). In the Freshman Record for the Class of 1989 (published in 1985), it has disappeared from the list. It is certainly not unheard of for campus clubs and organizations to come and go within a four-year period, as they may be spearheaded by a particular student or a group of students with deep passion for the club’s goals, and once that student or group graduates, the club either gradually or immediately dissipates, no longer invigorated by the fervor its former leaders held. The most educated guess that can be ventured about what happened to the Gay Discussion Group was that its founders, organizers, and/or most active attendees graduated from Union in the period from 1983 to 1985.


LGBTQ+ centric organization would soon arise again at Union. Whereas the Gay Discussion Group seemed to have formed without attracting much broader campus attention, the originally anonymously led Gay Support Group that was formed in 1989, which was soon renamed the Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual Alliance (GLBA) and was revealed to be led by Edgar Letriz ‘91, became the subject of a very public controversy in the Concordiensis. This set of writings from the Concordiensis spans almost a year to-the-day from October 5, 1989 to October 4, 1990, and each of these pieces paint a vivid story about the diversity of opinion on Union’s campus - the coexistence of fervent homophobia, genuine displays of allyship, and out and proud queer individuals. 

October 5, 1989 - an advertisement for the Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual Support Group.

October 12, 1989 - A response to the advertisement for the Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual Support Group from the prior week.

October 19, 1989 - Several responses to the letter "'Coming Out' Anonymously" from the previous week.

October 26, 1989 - Edgar Letriz '91's response to the support that he and the now-renamed Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual Alliance received the previous week. 

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