by Jarrah Hodge
Back in December I interviewed Dr. Kristopher Wells of the University of Alberta’s nohomophobes.com project, which uses a website tracking homophobic language on Twitter to act as a “social mirror” drawing attention to everyday homophobia.
This week the campaign started a new phase by launching a PSA that asks why homophobic language is still widely used and often accepted. The language could be considered NSFW, so fair warning:
Global TV donated the PSA production and the clip was created by No Homophobes partner Calder Bateman. Jeff McLean of Calder Bateman told Global News: “We thought the PSA or the TV spot would be a visual representation of the tweets that are coming in on the website…Hearing it from these people is quite shocking.”
In a statement Wells said, “We no longer tolerate racist language, weʼre getting better at dealing with sexist language, but sadly we still see and hear homophobic and transphobic language in our society. While this language might not always be meant to be hurtful, we must not forget that words like “faggot” contribute greatly to the continued alienation and isolation of sexual and gender (LGBTQ) people, especially our youth.”
The PSA has already started getting international attention and will hopefully contribute to raising awareness and increasing constructive dialogue about homophobic language use in Canada and around the world.