Letter to the Editor

President Knapp – Dump Target!

Every year, The George Washington University hosts “Target Takeover,” an event during which buses take students to the local Target store to buy supplies for their rooms and classes. In light of recent events, I, as an LGBT student of GW, am calling on President Steven Knapp and the GW administration to cut its ties to Target and call off the event.

GW has always been known as a gay-friendly school. Sure, it’s not perfect, but we are definitely better than associating ourselves with a corporation that donated $150,000 to the vehemently anti-gay Tom Emmer via the Minnesota Forward PAC. Washington University in St. Louis has already dropped Target, and it’s time for GW to do the same. Based on Target’s homophobic campaign contributions – and its lackluster “apology” and unwillingness to make financial amends – I implore the GW administration to renounce its relationship with Target altogether.

Last week, the “Boycott Target Until They Cease Funding Anti-Gay Politics” Facebook page provoked a flash mob of sorts on the Facebook pages of “The George Washington University” and “Target College Events at The George Washington University,” with dozens of people posting comments expressing disappointment with Target’s funding of anti-gay politics. The comments on Target’s page have been deleted, but our message is being heard loud and clear.

But we have not gone far enough yet. And so I have launched a campaign to call on President Steven Knapp directly to dump Target. I called Knapp’s office at 994-6500 and left a voicemail urging him to cancel “Target Takeover.” I will call him every day until the event Thursday to make sure my voice, as an LGBT student of his school, is heard. I ask that my fellow students, LGBT and straight allies, do the same. Even if you are not a member of the GW community, you should still call – Knapp should know that the world is watching.

So please, join the Facebook event, pick up your phone and dial 994-6500 to call Knapp and tell him to drop Target. Let’s make sure The George Washington University stands up for all of its students.

Alexander Laska is a junior majoring in political communication.

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