Mailbox: Long’s Letter Is Wrong

I am stunned by the letter in “Mailbox” from Scott Long ’92 (“Wedding Blues,” 2008/1) regarding the “Pairings” section of the magazine. That our alumni group contains someone so far right and homophobic as to object to such a minor change [in the section’s title] is not surprising. You must get such periodic fringe letters.

I am more concerned that you would publish the letter, since it is offensive and hurtful toward others. (You seem to have ignored your own advice to letter writers to “Please be courteous.”) You could have published the objection with just the first and last paragraphs and allowed readers to infer the writer’s homophobia. Instead, you published a letter that is insulting and abusive. Long characterizes gay and lesbian relationships of 7 to 15 years as “irrelevant.”

Obviously, the editor finds these cheap shots at gay relationships acceptable. I believe an apology from the editor is in order.

Carol Przybycien ’73, Las Vegas, Nevada

Editor’s response: The editor — that would be me, Maura Stephens, the only person responsible for printing it — found the letter in question ignorant and poorly written. There are still many in the United States — even Ithaca College alumni, unfortunately — who insist that inequality is acceptable in U.S. law and society. I was glad that Ms. Przybycien wrote to take exception to the letter, but chagrined that she chose to blame “the editor” for printing it. By printing it in its entirety (although I did clean up some of the language), I had hoped to spark a discussion in these pages. We invite our readers to answer correspondence with your own thoughtful submissions; in fact, please read the other letters in this issue tagged with the same graphic of two white rings on a yellow background, which offer just such instructional and inclusionary responses. For the record, “Pairings” was for four years prior called “Couplings,” and before that, “Weddings.”