Section: Editorial

Staff Editorial: The College needs to stand in solidarity with Dorian R. Debussy

Last week, Associate Director for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Dorian Rhea Debussy resigned from their position as an NCAA facilitator after the organization changed its policy regarding transgender athletes. We support Debussy’s decision, and thank them for the work they have done for the LGBTQ+ community. 

They have received tens upon thousands of transphobic hate messages for their resignation, and the College has made no official statement of solidarity. In light of this severe backlash, we implore the College to make a public statement of support for Debussy and their resignation, and for the Kenyon community to extend their encouragement to them as they navigate this stressful period of time. 

If the College claims to “[foster] a community in which every person has a sense of full belonging,” as it does in its Diversity, Equity and Inclusion commitment, it must follow through with its promises, and decisively take a stand on these new policies in support of Debussy and all current and future transgender members of its community.

The sports community has for far too long been a place of exclusion and prejudice regarding the LGBTQ+ community. Countless athletes and coaches have been discriminated against due to their sexual orientation, creating fear across the community that the sports world will not accept them for who they are. Debussy has dedicated their career to LGBTQ+ inclusion, and their continued fight is inspiring. Kenyon needs to demonstrate their support and commitment to Debussy’s efforts. 

Debussy has made numerous contributions to the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at Kenyon. As the first openly trans-feminine employee of the College, Debussy has created multiple resources towards LGBTQ+ inclusion: They developed and teach Kenyon’s first permanent queer studies course, have supervised Unity House and the Crozier Center for Women and managed the Student LGBTQ+ Diversity Fund. So it is now the College’s duty to give back to them.

Kenyon claims to be proud of its diversity and supportive of all community members, regardless of personal identity. This is a perfect moment for the school to step up and demonstrate they care about every single member of our community.

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