Leading a conversation on reproductive justice isn’t always easy, and that’s especially the case at Georgetown University. That’s why I’m expressing my appreciation as an alum for the spectacular work led by the students in H*yas for Choice. Participation in this group is in itself an act of leadership in the struggle for human rights and dignity for all people, especially women, LGBTQ people, and people of color.
Whether tabling and providing condoms to students, attending a meeting and educating one another about sexuality and systems of oppression, or joining in coalition with advocates in equality movements on campus and beyond, your efforts make a substantial difference toward creating a world where sexuality is not used as a weapon to disenfranchise people.
In doing this work, H*yas for Choice by necessity challenges Georgetown to live up to its status as a first-rate institution of higher learning. In advocating for reproductive rights and justice, H*yas for Choice provides an alternative view to the official teachings on women and sexuality provided by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. One of the important things that means is that H*yas for Choice is tasked with coaxing the university toward greater freedom of expression and inquiry on campus.
In so doing, H*yas for Choice is not just advocating for a better world, but also a better university community. The freedom to speak alternative points of view strengthens the quality of education and inquiry at Georgetown, and with that, the benefits of belonging to the Georgetown community more broadly – no matter what an individual’s conscience may tell her or him.
These are just a few of the reasons why this alum feels that the students in H*yas for Choice make her even more proud to be a Hoya. Please know that your efforts are noticed and appreciated by many alumni, and we stand eager to support you in your work.
Erin Matson (COL 2002) serves as an interviewer for the Alumni Admissions Program, and a mentor for the WAGE Fellowship through the Georgetown University Women’s Center. Recently she served as a judge for the Philodemic Society’s 2014 Richard T. Merrick Debate.