Indigo Girls: Emily Saliers
Heartland News Iowa Deputy Clerk Files Illegal
Interview by Arthur Breur Emily Saliers of the Indigo Girls discusses her connection to Iowa, how she and Amy Ray collaborate, being out in the music industry, their Grammy nominations, and three decades of performing. Decades into their career, the Indigo Girls still amaze with their ability to grow and Emily Saliers. Courtesy of Indigo Girls. thrive no matter what the state of the music industry is at any given point.
TTINDIGO GIRLS continued page 21
Donna Red Wing is starting conversations
Interview by Arthur Breur In October, I had the opportunity to sit down and chat with One Iowa’s new executive director, Donna Red Wing. Just a couple of months into her new role, she reached out to The ACCESSline to discuss how One Iowa could work with us and with other community organizations around the state. “Starting conversations” seems to be a big part of the way that this remarkable woman both gets things started and gets things done. How has it been so far as One Iowa’s new executive director? It’s been great. We have fallen in love with Des Moines, with Iowa. The organization is tremendous and the staff is absolutely stellar. What was your experience before One Iowa? For the past twenty-five or so years I have worked in the LGBTQ movement. I was chief of staff at Walter Cronkite’s organization, Interfaith Alliance in Washington DC. I was
TTRED WING continued on page 16
Brigitte Van Nice, Deputy Clerk of Court in Grundy County, Iowa is accused of filing an illegal Iowa marriage certificate for two men from Florida. With an ordination certificate received from an online program, Van Nice apparently set up online advertisements about getting married in Iowa, and told Joab Penney and Joseph Parker that they did not need to come to Iowa to be legally married in the state. The couple paid her $150. For a couple to be legally married in Iowa, both parties must be physically present with a witness acquainted with the couple as a witness. The couple must then wait three business days for the license to be valid. The license must be followed by a wedding ceremony within six months, and the couple, the officiant and two witnesses must sign the marriage certificate, which must then be filed within 15 days. Van Nice claims she met the couple at a truck stop in February 2012 and performed the ceremony at the same location. She is now accused of forgery and felony perjury. Van Nice was arrested on October 19th but posted bond and is currently on administrative leave.
TTHEARTLAND NEWS on page 3
“Evil Dead: The Musical”
Review by Angela Geno-Stumme Get ready to laugh until you’re covered in blood—fake blood!—because that’s how much gore is in “Evil Dead: The Musical!” People are dropping like Deadites and blood is shooting Ash & Linda. Courtesy of Stagewest. from the floor while guts are flying across the room! Don’t wear white unless you’re wanting to risk a color change. “Evil Dead: The Musical” is a combination of three classic Sam Raimi films: The Evil Dead, Evil Dead 2, and Army of Darkness. The story focuses on a group of five friends spending the weekend in a cabin in the woods, where the powers of the Necronomicon are unknow-
TTEVIL DEAD continued on page 15
TTInterview page 32
Section 1: News & Politics
Letter to the Editor 3 Advertising rates 3 24th Miss Gay Iowa USofA Pageant Des Moines, Iowa 4 26th Ann. AIDS Benefit featuring A Veteran’s Day Salute 4 Transgender in the Heartland by Ryan K. Sallans 4 Iowa’s Importance by Donna Red Wing, 5 Iowa Governor’s Bullying Prevention Summit 11/27 5 Minor Details: by Robert Minor 6 Religion of Anger by Tony E. Hansen 7 Shrink Rap by Loren A. Olson MD 7 Remarkables by Jonathan Wilson 8 Latino activists join with marriage activists. by Rev. Monroe 8 Digging Deeper interview by Amber Dunham 9 Bullying Prevention Programs by Warren J. Blumenfeld 10 Creep of the Week by D’Anne Witkowski 10
Section 2: Fun Guide
Entertainment Picks for the Month 11 The Perks of Being Ezra Miller Interview by C. Azzopardi 11 The Mirage with The Kings & Queens of the Night 12/1 12 The New Kings on the Block Change it Up 13 Transgender Day of Remembrance 13 Inside Out:The God’s Truth by Ellen Krug 14 Janeane From Des Moines: Movie Review by J.Wilson 14 Wired This Way: by Rachel Eliason 15 Just Sayin’ by Beau Fodor 16 The Bookworm Sez by Terri Schlichenmeyer 22 Comics and Crossword Puzzle 22-23 Consider these Bisschopswijn Thanksgiving traditions 23 Earning Respect: A Drag Queen’s Career Interview by Angela Geno-Stumme 24
Section 3: Community
FFBC: Several Words to the Wise by Bruce Carr 25 Prime Timers of Central Iowa 25 Greater Omaha GLBT Network Calendar 25 Giving Thanks & Remembrance This Nov. by Royal Bush, 26 CRPrideFest’s Halloween a Frightfully Good Time 27 PITCH Calendar 2012 & Nov. Conference Call 27 From the Pastor’s Pen, by Rev. Jonathan Page 27 Business Directory 28-29 Ask Lambda Legal: Blood Donations by Scott Schoettes 31 Living a Leather Life Interview by Angela Geno-Stumme 32 Midwest Leather Weekend Shakes Up Saint Louis, MO 33 International Puppy 11/9 33
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Section 1: News & Politics
Letter to the Editor Honoring LGBT Victims of Hate Crimes
The crusade for equal marriage rights is in the forefront of gay political action. Bullying against LGBT school age children is another up and coming issue. While bullying is an issue gaining traction in generating solutions, physical assaults are yet a real fear among LGBT’s of all ages. How has larger society found strength in dealing with political violence against its own? There is Memorial Day, Veterans’ Day, Oklahoma City’s 1995 bombing memorial, and the Twin Tower memorial. Among Gay Germans we also find a model. Plaques
SScontinued from page 1
HEARTLAND NEWS The invalid marriage license came to light when Penney sought legal advice about getting a divorce. No charges will be filed against Penney and Parker as investigators believe they did not know that the marriage license would not be valid. Penney expressed his frustration in an interview with the AP. “I was pretty upset. What she did was wrong. It really illustrates a very, very big thing about gay marriage. Isn’t the United States supposed to be free? Why can’t same-sex people be married and be who they want to be? Why can’t all the states have it? It’s ridiculous.”
Speech of Missouri Reverend Goes Viral
Reverend Phil Snyder from Springfield Missouri spoke in front of a city council that was discussing adding homosexuality to the
placed in Germany commemorating the tens-of- thousands of gays killed during the Holocaust. Here-in lies a need for the GLBT community of Iowa: a need, as in, needing to perform a duty; a need, as in, a visible symbol to honor the victims—that we will not forget you; and a need, as in, shouting out the strength of Iowa’s GLBTs facing up to the onslaughts of physical attacks. How? There must be discussion about how. For instance, in 1978 an attack in Iowa City near Linn and Washington St. left a resident severely beaten. Three male college students threw fists and kicks on an openly Gay man. A memorial plague placed at the site would send a powerful message. local ordinance on protected minorities. In video taken of the speech that was later posted to YouTube, what starts out sounding like a religious rant against rights for gays and lesbians turns out to be a lesson in history. “Any accurate reading of the Bible should make it clear that gay rights goes against the plain truth of the word of God… It’s not that we don’t care about homosexuals, but it’s that our rights will be taken away, and un-Christian views will be forced on us and our children, and we’ll be forced to go against our personal morals.” Part way through the video, the reverend appears to stumble, saying the words “the right of segregation” instead of “gay rights”— at which time the point of his entire speech becomes obvious: “I’m sorry, I’ve brought the wrong notes with me this
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As hundreds of such attacks have occurred in Iowa; GLBT Iowans could erect several plaques as beacons of light. We would honor the physically assaulted victims as heroes. Is there a particular attack the Waterloo GLBT’s want to focus on to represent the greater all? Is there one particular attack for the Ames’ GLBT community to recognize? As a GLBT group we need to say to victims; that it happens, you are not alone, and that you are a hero for enduring and getting through that terrorist attack. We need to say to ourselves, we are good and worthy of the utmost respect. And we need to say to the greater community, “We the People”—that means all of us. John Clayton, Grinnell, Iowa evening. I’ve borrowed my argument from the wrong century. It turns out what I’ve been reading to you this whole time are direct quotes from white preachers from the 1950s and the 1960s all in support of racial segregation.” The reverend has received national attention since the video went viral—it has had more than three million viewers as of the writing of this article. It can be viewed in its entirety at: youtu.be/A8JsRx2lois
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Section 1: News & Politics
24th Miss Gay Iowa USofA 26th Anniversary AIDS Pageant Des Moines, Iowa Benefit featuring A Veteran’s Day Salute 11/11 The 24th year of the Miss Gay Iowa USofA Pageant is November 30-December 2nd in Des Moines, Iowa. Preliminary Nights will be held at The Garden Nightclub again this year. Final Night this year will be held at a live music venue in the East Village called Wooly’s. Final Night is going to be an event like never before, featuring the reigning Miss Gay Iowa USofA, Lady Adawnis. Four National Title Holders will be part of the entertainment lineup, including the reigning Miss Gay USofA, Lawanda Jackson from Houston, Texas. Also there will be Miss Gay USofA 2004 and Miss Gay USofA Classic 2012, Layla LaRue from Dallas, Texas, Mr Gay USofA 2008, Simba Hall from Las Vegas, Nevada, and the whole weekend is hosted by Miss Gay USofA @ Large 2008…Tajma Hall from Chicago, Illinois. In addition to the four National Title Holders, we will have many former Miss Gay Iowa’s, the reigning Mr Gay Iowa USofA, Keaton Cavalier and Miss Gay Iowa USofA @ Large, Crystal Belle.
With thirteen preliminary pageants, we have qualified 23 contestants to compete in Miss Gay Iowa USofA 2013. Contestants will check in on Friday, November 30th at noon and will be informed about the weekend’s events and compete in the Interview Competition. Half of the contestants will compete in Evening Gown on Friday, the other half will compete in Talent. On Saturday, competition continues but on Sunday Night all contestants will come out in presentation of contestants, and we will announce the Top 10 that will battle it out for the crown of Miss Gay Iowa USofA 2013! The All Star Show is Thursday, November 29th at The Garden at 11pm. Preliminary Nights 1 & 2 are at The Garden on Friday, November 30th and Saturday, December 1st at 9pm. Final Night is at Wooly’s on Sunday, December 2nd at 8pm. For more information visit our website: MissGayIowa.com or find us on Facebook “Iowa USofA Pageantry”.
With the end of each trip that I take, as I leave the revolving doors of Omaha’s Eppley Airfield, my body is instantly submerged either in the damp heat of the Heartland’s summer or the intense breeze of our unforgiving winters. I can’t say that I particularly care for the average weather that we endure, but it is something that reminds me I am home.
fighting, that kept shouting from deep within my soul. It was a part that I didn’t fully understand or embrace until the age of 24 when I happened across a book about transgender men while on vacation with my girlfriend. The pages were filled with men posing amongst items from their day-to-day lives. One was putting on his wet suit and going out for an evening surf, and another was straining his neck muscles as he lifted a barbell stacked with weights. With each page I turned I saw another man with another story. When I came to the end of the book it dawned on me that these men weren’t rich and they weren’t famous. They were just everyday people who had transitioned from one sex to the other. I knew then that I could transition too. I knew that I was transgender. With this realization, the part of my soul that had been hidden within my skin came rushing out. There was no turning back for me, there wasn’t time for “what if’s” and long drawn out plans. I was on a mission where five months later I began my transition to manhood. It started for me with chest surgery (removal of the breasts) and then the bi-weekly injections of testosterone deep into my thigh (something that I’ll continue for the rest of my life). The first year of my transition I saw myself going through the puberty I had always wanted as a child. I took innumerable voice clips to check on the pitch and drop in my voice. I snapped endless photos of my face to measure how many new pieces of hair had poked through on my chin and neck. And I began measuring my biceps to see if they were changing in size. The next year I was able to undergo a complete hysterectomy, and then in 2008 I flew over to Belgrade, Serbia to complete my lower surgery. Many people fear that transitioning in the Heartland is impossible because of the conservative politics and people. Nebraska is known for the historic and tragic case of Brandon Teena (born Teena Brandon) who
This year The Benefit celebrates its 26th Anniversary with a variety of select performances by dancers, vocalists, impersonators, and crooners –all saluting Veteran’s Day and the USO Shows. In addition, several silent and live auction items will be offered which include framed Broadway Show posters signed by original cast members, an original art piece created by HIV+ Ugandans associated with the Caring Hands Foundation, hotel and spa packages, Iowa Barnstormer, and Brenton Skating Plaza tickets—plus many more “must-haves”. The Sunday, Nov. 11th event will take place in the Embassy Suites Grand Ballroom, Des Moines, Iowa which will be transformed into a Hollywood cantina style USO show setting by Stuart Alexander of One Source Events and Beau Fodor of Panache. This year, the auction is an integral part of The Benefit. Both the live and silent auction items will be presented from 5-6:00 pm. The
auction will then segue into the evening’s entertainment. Early attendance is encouraged to help assure not missing out on fantastic buys. A Rainbow Veterans Color Guard will open the show along with the Star Spangled Banner performed by the Des Moines Gay Men’s Chorus. Guests who dress in military uniform will receive a discount from the regular ticket price. Additionally, guests will have the opportunity to be photographed with military models and other show cast members. $25 general admission tickets are available at the door or by phone at 515-2840245. A limited number of 10- seat VIP tables are still available for $1,000, $500 and $350 and can be reserved by calling the phone number above. APCI clients are eligible for complimentary tickets from their Case Managers. For more information go to AIDsProjectCI.org.
was murdered in Humboldt, NE on December 31st, 1993. Although one’s safety can always be at risk, I have found that the majority of people in this region are caring, understanding and simply curious. My biggest fears spun around what would happen to my relationship with my lesbian partner, how much yelling I would experience from my parents, and whether healthcare providers would listen to me or push me out the door. What the past eight years have taught me is that the only way I could truly be happy was to honor my identity and to stay strong and proud of what I believed in, even when it felt like I was losing everything else around me. For any reader who is on their own personal quest for happiness or clarity, I encourage you to pick up my newly released memoir, Second Son: Transitioning Toward My Destiny, Love and Life. It’s a story that shows the pain and sadness along with the joys that come when you honor your truths. To learn more about Ryan’s memoir and his transition please visit his website: RyanSallans.com. Ryan will be doing a book reading
Ryan Sallans, author of Second Son. Courtesy of Ryan Sallans. November 10th from 4-6 PM at Ritual Café, 1301 Locust Street, Des Moines, Iowa.
Transgender in the Heartland by Ryan K. Sallans
Ryan in his youth. Courtesy of Ryan Sallans. As a kid growing up in Aurora, Nebraska I never envisioned that my life would be one of traveling to different states and speaking about the intimate details of my life to a room full of strangers, but then again, I also never believed that I would truly be able to transition from female to male. My memoires as a child are filled with anxiety surrounding my body, the clothes I had to wear, the comments made by the other kids and the fear that I would never be lovable. My anxiety and fears led me to the point where I didn’t even love myself. While in college I tried to destroy my life through the actions of an eating disorder and suicide attempts. I believed at that time that the world would be a better place if I wasn’t taking up space. The only reason I am alive today is because during my darkest hours there was always a small part of me that kept
Section 1: News & Politics
ACCESSline Page 5
Iowa’s Importance by Donna Red Wing, Executive Director One Iowa Just last month I met, albeit by phone, Arthur G. Breur, the editor-in-chief here at The ACCESSline. I learned a great deal about the publication and about Arthur. I admit how pleased I was to learn about his work and the great tradition that ACCESSline upholds. Today there are so many ways to get our information, our news and our stories. With just a click we can find out what is happening in our community— where the lesbians are meeting for that dance and potluck, or where the Court will hold its next spectacular event, or when the gay rodeo fellas are planning the next calf ropes and bull rides. We can find almost anything from The ACCESSline either on paper or online. I’m especially pleased that it is still on paper. Let me introduce myself. I am the new Executive Director at One Iowa. I come from a long history of LGBTQ advocacy work on both local and national levels; the Human Rights Campaign, the Gill Foundation, the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, the Lesbian Community Project, and the Howard Dean and Barack Obama presidential campaigns. I came to Iowa because I believe that what we do here has great implications for the rest of the nation. Iowa celebrates marriage equality, a precious and fragile commitment to full equality under the state constitution. I believe we are a beacon of hope to the rest of the Heartland, to the South, and to the Pacific Northwest. I believe that
as Iowa goes, so goes the nation. I also came to Iowa because after 26 years, I would like to marry my partner Sumitra. Together we have stood against the radical right; from religious extremists to white supremacists; from national politicians who made a career out of their intolerance, to local officials on the same career trajectory. Together we fought against horrific ballot measures and amendments, against campaigns waged to diminish us, and against those who called out a culture war—a holy war against LGBTQ Americans. We have also been a part of this great movement that is so much more than a struggle. It is about our friends and our families and our children. We danced to our music, enjoyed our festivals and yes, our potlucks and drag events and rodeos. We have laughed so much, and celebrated who we were and who we got to be.’ And so here we are in Iowa. It feels like home. We have experienced ‘Iowa’ Nice. And we have also experienced genuine friendship. Coming from the mountains of Colorado, where we lived for the last 13 years, we are thrilled with the deciduous trees that turn such lovely colors in the fall. We have never seen so much corn in our lives. We have discovered the Ritual Café and the Drake Diner, the East Village and the Farmer’s Market. We exchanged the Rocky Mountains for Iowa Bluffs, and substituted snow in September with glori-
I believe we are a beacon of hope to the rest of the Heartland, to the South, and to the Pacific Northwest. I believe that as Iowa goes, so goes the nation.
ous crisp autumn days. Most importantly, we moved from a state that we loved but didn’t love us. In May 2012 in Colorado, a civil union bill was killed before it could even reach the floor of the House of Representatives. So we packed up our belongings and our dogs in, yes, a U-Haul truck and drove straight across the Eastern Plains of Colorado and the Great Plains of Nebraska and finally to Iowa—where our relationship will be recognized and our upcoming marriage legal. So, I thank The ACCESSline for agreeing to give me a little space to fill each month. I hope to be informative and provocative. I will speak from the perspective of a lesbian activist and advocate, because that is my perspective. I will also speak from my position as Executive Director of One Iowa, and that perspective is about equality for all LGBTQ Iowans and the extraordinary work that we are doing together to reach those goals. Please feel free to email me at donna@ oneiowa.org to share your ideas and thoughts about One Iowa and our movement for equality. I look forward to hearing from you. A Reminder: One Iowa is hosting the Fifth Annual Sweet Equality and we want you to join us! This popular event brings together professional chefs, bakers, and proequality supporters to celebrate lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) equality. Guests are invited to vote for their favorite treats from some of the best chefs in Central Iowa. What: Fifth Annual Sweet Equality in Des Moines When: Wednesday, November
Donna Red Wing is the Executive Director of One Iowa. She served as Executive Director of Grassroots Leadership, as Chief of Staff at Interfaith Alliance, she was a member of the Obama’s kitchen cabinet on LGBT concerns, and was Howard Dean’s outreach liaison to the LGBT communities. Red Wing has also held leadership positions at the Gill Foundation, Human Rights Campaign and the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation. Red Wing was the first recipient of the Walter Cronkite Award for Faith & Freedom. Red Wing serves on the national board of the Velvet Foundation, which is building the national LGBT museum in Washington, DC. Contact Donna at OneIowa.org or email@example.com. 14--6:00 pm to 9:00 pm Where: Americana Restaurant, 1312 Locus Street, Des Moines, Iowa 50309 Tickets are $50 each and include 2 VIP drink tickets. Bakers include: The Arthouse Cafe, Creme Cupcake, Catering by Cyd, Luna Bistro, and more. For more information go to OneIowa.org.
Iowa Governor’s Bullying Prevention Summit 11/27 The Iowa Governor’s Bullying Prevention Summit is intended to raise awareness about the pervasive problem of bullying, and to send the strongest possible message that our schools alone cannot stop it, that communities must become more engaged in taking the steps needed to address this issue. Although awareness is growing, many Iowans may be surprised at the extent of bullying that takes place at school, from teasing to major incidents that make the news. This is unacceptable. Creating a caring environment at school is important for
every student’s well-being. It affects how successfully youngsters can focus on learning as well as the other skills they need to develop to make the most of their potential and to be good citizens. Iowa schools and communities have been working hard on anti-bullying efforts. The summit is an opportunity to learn from some of them, as well as other state and national experts, about how to make schools a more civil, welcoming place for everyone. Gov. Terry Branstad and Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds are hosting the summit, which is open to the public. Registration will be required and the summit will be held Tuesday, November 27th at Hy-Vee Hall in Des Moines. It will be paid for with funding from the Iowa Department of Education, registration fees and generous support from the private sector. For more information and to register for the Iowa Governor’s Bullying Prevention Summit, go to PreventBullying.Iowa.Gov
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Section 1: News & Politics
Minor Details by Robert Minor Could Fundamentalists Exist Without Being Motivated by Hate?
That’s the gist of an all too common question. And when looking at the daily news, there’s clear reason for asking it. Recently we saw again what can happen when anti-Muslim Christians—this time using a film—chose to rile up anti-Christian Muslims. It’s as if both sides in such feuds thrive on the hatred of the other. And the psychological reality is, they do. Extreme right-wing religions play on the fears and insecurities of people growing up in a world that installs these in its children through what the late child psychologist Alice Miller calls “poisonous pedagogy.” In fact, their theologies enshrine and sanctify such childrearing practices. “There are countless theological explanations for the motives behind God’s inscrutable counsels,” Miller writes in The Truth Will Set You Free (2001), “but in all too many of them I see a terrorized child trying hard to interpret the mysterious actions of the [punishing] parent as good and loving, even though the child cannot fathom them—indeed has no chance of fathoming them.” Right-wing religion attempts to convince its followers that they can’t trust their own thinking, their own intuitions, and their own voices. They’re too vile, self-deceiving, lowly,
fallen, finite, or just too “human.” It strives to install the self-evaluation behind all addictions—a low self-concept. And that self-loathing is no mere misunderstanding correctable through counseling; it’s an accurate measure of who one really is. This means people must learn to become “obedient” to something other than their own inner voice. That something might be called scripture, god, the faith, the Truth, revelation, the Church, or tradition, but the obedience demanded is really to institutions and authoritative leaders who’ll define what scripture, god, etc. are and what they teach for people who’ve been told that they aren’t capable of defining those things for themselves. A low self-concept—one in this case enforced by right-wing religious teachings— develops personalities who need to rely on something better than themselves in order to feel good about themselves. And the religious leaders just happen to have that “something” ready and waiting. We shouldn’t be surprised, then, that right-wing religion idealizes “childlike faith,” or “childlike obedience” and talks about its followers as “children” of the Divine. We shouldn’t be surprised that it pushes teenage or adult-style questioning to the outside as heterodoxy, infidelity, and heresy. And the “children” they are to be are like those they raise with “poisonous pedagogy.”
There must be either friends or enemies of the faith. There’s nothing in between.
They are like little ones who believe that their parents are perfect and can only love perfect parents. There’s no grown-up love that admits the flaws in others and loves them anyway. When these religions are used in the cause of a country’s nationalism, their nationalism hates when someone criticizes their own country. It labels that unpatriotic because even their love of country resembles “love” that is immature. And we know that just as children often think of things in binaries such as black and white, so does addictive thinking. There can be no nuance or shades of gray in right-wing religion. There must be either friends or enemies of the faith. There’s nothing in between. Those who are the agents of darkness are necessary as “others.” “They” make us feel righteous. “They” exist to prove we are not wrong. “They” provide the face of the enemy. “They” are easier to fight than our own demons within. So, our righteousness ramps up and is justified in “hating the sin” that those sinners represent. “They” provide the face of fear. “They” remind us of why we need to cling to our religion and guns. “They” keep the battle going, a battle that requires time and money. “They” keep the finances coming in to religious leaders who keep reminding us of the threat “they” pose. And the existence of “they” brings, beyond the cash it raises, a most important psychological need for the nobody preachers like the funeral picketer from Topeka, or the Koran burner from Gainesville. It brings them the attention they failed to get from daddy and mommy. It validates that they’re actually okay in the midst of their unbelief in the power of their god. It brings them the national spotlight that says they haven’t given their lives to something about which few people care. To keep the sickness going, the enemy must get ever stronger, more evil, and more threatening. It must be further constructed as someone, some group, or some thing that is so awful that the only appropriate response is hate. And no matter how much they might say they hate the sin but love the sinner, the “sinner” will experience the hate as personal. To be the object of such hate is to feel
Robert N. Minor, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus of Religious Studies at the University of Kansas, is author of When Religion Is an Addiction; Scared Straight: Why It’s So Hard to Accept Gay People and Why It’s So Hard to Be Human and Gay & Healthy in a Sick Society. Contact him at www.FairnessProject.org. that it’s not just about what one does but also about the “sinner” one is. Ask those who suffered the inquisitions, the witch burnings, the pogroms, the Crusades, or the Holocaust. Ask LGBT people. They’ve never bought into the “love the sinner, hate the sin” distinction—a phrase never found in the Christian Bible—unless they’ve already been taught a low self-concept by the people who justify their beliefs with the distinction. They’ve felt how much it’s the self-serving lip-service of those who want them straight. Whatever happened to the old bumper stickers that said “Hate is not a family value?” Did the right-wing bully the rest of us into removing what was a clear statement of the issue? Did they intimidate us by saying “You’re not accusing us of hate, are you?” And did we back down because we didn’t want to call their bigotry, prejudice, and crusades hate? Are we afraid to talk about “hate speech?” Are we afraid to call the demonizing of the other “hate?” Are we afraid to do what might be seen as an intervention in religious addiction? Much sickness lies behind right-wing hatred of those they see as their enemies. So we mustn’t be surprised that for right-wing religion anyone who even defends the “other” will become “other.”
Section 1: News & Politics
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Religion of Anger by Tony E. Hansen It is frequently claimed that there is at least one item that you should shy away from discussing when in civil company: religion. Assuredly, someone will offend someone else’s different religious belief or opinion. Yet, the reason that people make this claim is that religion tends to be deeply personal. The lightest comment by one person can be an instant insult to another. The world seems ever more leaning toward finding the insult than light conversation. Considering how easy it is to offend someone in America on the topic of religion, no one should be surprised that a video insulting Islam would be met with violence. When recent riots in the Mideast were provoked by extremist Christian elements, I could only think of how angry religion has become. There is always someone who wants to push the boundaries of what is acceptable and make others look bad. The extreme religious factions in America have made business more difficult and tourism more dangerous for all Americans. Foreigners have to be wondering how America will insult someone today instead of being that “beacon of light” and hope. Yet, there is something similar of both the crazies in Florida who promoted the crap that provoked the radical violence in the Islamic world as well as the crazies who sought violence as the primary reaction to it. Both follow an almost “demonic” kind of reasoning that insults all modern religions. Both disregard any sense of security and justice for others. Despite teachings of compassion and
love as the basis for modern world religions, or even their foundations in the Golden Rule, we see instantly angry reactions from religious folks of all stripes. Religion has turned first to anger, “firing first and then asking questions later.” These people are rejecting their own fundamental teachings and, instead, worshipping their anger and hatreds. The promotion of this hateful spirit is a sacrilege and a rejection of the teachings of Jesus Christ, the Prophet Mohammed, the Buddha, and the many other reverences around the world. The merits of organized religion are lost when people (extreme or mainstream) disregard the basic tenets of their religious doctrines. Instead of promoting the compassion and tolerance of those peaceful doctrines, these people focus efforts to incite riots, destruction, and violence at everyone’s expense, regardless of reason. Such people disregard facts and any notion of tolerance. They become fodder for spewing hate and more anger within the extreme elements that promote the worst of humanity (those anti-Christ-like ways.) Unfortunately, these people will also wallow in the misery of their hatred and anger. They will not find peace regardless of how many are killed or how many lives are ruined. They are exhibiting actual “gluttony” and “greed” to have all people believe in their perspective of God and religion. They can be guaranteed to turn blind eyes to genocide and even actively participate in the holocausts.
These elements of Christianity, Islam, Judaism, and others welcome shallow showmanship with a disregard of others using the loudest inconsiderate boasts. The Buddha teaches, “The shallow is easy to embrace, but the profound is difficult; that to discard the shallow and seek the profound is the way of courage.” I am not saying that all showmanship, like Tim Tebow, is destructive, because seeing those who believe in their convictions clearly lets people know what they believe. Yet, showmanship, especially the extreme kind, is clearly at odds with Matthew 6:5, the Buddha and the Qur’an because real faith is within the self that can help guide one’s actions. Further, consider James 1, “You must understand this, my beloved: let everyone be quick to listen, slow to speak, slow to anger; for your anger does not produce God’s righteousness.” The Qu’ran (3:134) suggests that those, “… who restrain anger and who pardon the people - and Allah loves the doers of good…” The quick, knee-jerk anger is denounced both in the Bible and the Qur’an, but you would never know that from Robertson’s CBN, Fox, or Al-Jazeera reports. It is almost as if these guys are helping to incite the violence in order to have something to report. “One tin soldier” cannot compete with the constant baiting these shallow “news” outlets and the extreme religious people project. As Dave Mustaine sings, “Ask the sheep for their beliefs, ‘do you kill on God’s command?’” The majority of all people do not hold these extreme views or the anger that has been on display. What we need is to reject the religion of anger and be each other’s keeper. To respect each other means not to force others to believe one way, but to allow people to believe. That is the essence of “freedom of religion.” To have faith is
Dr. Olson, With so much more in the media about gay men and women, isn’t it much easier to come out now than it was in the past? The simple answer is “No,” but it’s more complicated than that. From the perspective of society as a whole, it may be easier, but on an individual basis it is not. While it is true that we magnify potential losses and minimize potential gains, the reality is that some people feel they risk losing too much by coming out. One young man believes it may be harder for young people today than it was in the past. The instantaneous distribution of information has converted a “process” to an “event.” If a teen tells her friend she thinks she may be gay, her entire school and community may be aware of it by the next morning. Once labeled, it cannot be undone. Confessing ambivalence or confusion about sexual orientation transforms a feeling into a fact. A study at the University of California, San Francisco, found that self-identified gay men have considered suicide at three times
the rate of heterosexual men. Another study published in Pediatrics found that the rate of suicide in gay teens was much higher in communities where there is less acceptance of homosexuality. In China, 35% of gay men have seriously considered suicide and 70% of them eventually marry because of strong social pressure. A 55 year old friend in San Francisco, a gay Mecca, struggles a decision about coming out. A young African American from Birmingham told me that although he knows he’s gay, he is certain that if he came out he would be killed. I recently heard something similar from an older gay man in Iowa. Much of my own research has been with mature men who are caught in a purgatory of indecision. Too gay to be straight but too straight to be gay, they feel their lives are coming apart. This hidden group of men–I have not studied women–are overlooked in research because they resist being labeled gay. A lack of exposure to the diverse community of gay men reinforces their internal stereotypes of what it means to be gay, perpetuating their shame and
self-hatred. Rarely are characters on TV and in the movies portrayed as real people. Their roles are often built on exaggerated, stereotypical characteristics. When I was young, our celebrity role models were Liberace and Paul Lynd; today it is “Cam” on “Modern Family” and “Curt” on “Glee.” While both of the latter shows have produced very enlightened stories of the lives of gay relationships, it is easy for someone who is uncertain of their sexual orientation to say, “I can’t be gay! I’m not like them.” Coming out does not have to be all or nothing; it is possible to come out in limited ways and only to a few trusted friends. Being a part of a gay community even in very limited ways erases many of the internalized stereotypes we all have struggled with whether gay, bi or straight. But whenever a person says to another, “I think I might be gay,” he or she has lost control of the message. Some losses are real, even though frequently less than anticipated; however, the peace that comes with finally being one with oneself is unimaginable. Questions for Loren A Olson can be sent courtesy of ACCESSline, PO Box 396 Des Moines, IA 50302-0396.
Religion has turned first to anger, “firing first and then asking questions later.” These people are rejecting their own fundamental teachings and, instead, worshipping their anger and hatreds.
Shrink Rap by Loren A Olson MD
Coming out does not have to be all or nothing; it is possible to come out in limited ways and only to a few trusted friends.
Tony E Hansen is a web developer, organizer, researcher, writer, martial artist, and vocalist from Des Moines. For more information go to tigersndragons.com. to let go of perceptions of truth, to not be idolatrous to that perception, and to let the truth reveal itself. If we base our faith and beliefs in anger, then our religion is anger, hatred, and negativity. The religion becomes nothing of what the good people have taught us. If we are more concerned about others’ beliefs, we are foregoing growth in our own. Be willing to speak about your religion and how it enables you, but also be mindful that religion is deeply personal and can be easily insulted. Steer discussion away from heated anger and into how we share common interests, both in the spiritual and the physical realms. Maybe then we can live in each other’s neighborhoods, and maybe then we can walk in other countries without fear some jerk at home is going to create more religion-based anger. Peace be unto you.
Loren A. Olson MD, DLFAPA is a board certified psychiatrist who has been engaged in the clinical practice of psychiatry for over 35 years. Dr. Olson has conducted independent research on mature gay men, and presented the initial results of this research at the World Congress in Psychiatry in Prague in September 2008 and throughout the United States. He writes for his own blog, MagneticFire.com, which has a strong following among mature gay men. He is the author of Finally Out: Letting Go of Living Straight, for more information go to FinallyOutBook.com or Facebook.com.
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Section 1: News & Politics
Remarkables by Jonathan Wilson Varnum Revisited We were recently reminded by a remarkably candid Christopher Rants that, from the outset, opponents of same-sex marriage knew Iowa’s discriminatory law would probably not pass constitutional muster. The political controversy could be easily anticipated, and the members of the Iowa Supreme Court knew their vulnerability to being thrown out of office thanks to an orchestrated mob mentality among the electorate. The fact that the Supreme Court—unanimously—struck down the law speaks volumes about the indispensable role of the Supreme Court in upholding the constitution, and the courage and integrity of those entrusted with that high office. With the non-retention of three justices and targeting of a fourth, however, we cannot be confident for the foreseeable future that the cancer of politics has not successfully infected the judiciary. Time and unfolding future events alone will tell. The Varnum case didn’t happen by accident, and it offers the opportunity for additional civics lessons and a better understanding of judicial decision-making. Typically, a trial court, when asked to decide a constitutional issue, will choose the first and easiest constitutional issue that will dispose of the case on the most limited basis. It so rules, and that’s the end of the trial court’s job. If an appeal is
taken by a disappointed party, the appeal will be limited to the single issue decided by the trial court. In Varnum, however, Judge Hanson (bless his heart) didn’t stop there; he went on to address each and every constitutional issue challenging the discriminatory law. He basically said, if I’m wrong on any one, the case should have the same outcome on one or more of the others. That essentially (strategically?) forced the Iowa Supreme Court to consider every issue the trial court decided and that, in turn, maximized the likelihood that the case would survive appeal on at least one of them. As it turned out, he was upheld unanimously on every constitutional issue he decided, and that unanimity cannot be over-emphasized. Members of the Iowa Supreme Court are supposed to be among the best, brightest, and wisest in the legal profession, and the decision was without a single dissent. A somewhat similar process unfolded when the US Supreme Court decided Lawrence vs. Texas , the case that declared all remaining anti-sodomy laws unconstitutional. Typically, appellate courts will decide and dispose of cases on the
narrowest ground feasible, particularly when applying Constitutional principles. On several different grounds/bases the US Supreme Court could have struck down the Texas version of the law, or limited its decision to the manner in which the law was being applied in Texas (discriminatorily against samegender folks and not against heterosexuals who were undeniably engaging in the same behavior). Instead, the Court—motivated, I think, by the desire never to subject themselves or their successors to debating anal intercourse with a straight face in the hallowed halls of the Supreme Court— opted to decide the case on the broadest possible grounds and strike down all remaining anti-sodomy laws. That has huge implications for the eventual (and inevitable) legalization of gay marriage throughout the United States. In Varnum, the Iowa Supreme Court could theoretically have declared the marriage limitation void. Had it done so we would have been thrown into utter confusion while it took the Iowa Legislature however long to come up with something that might arguably pass constitutional
The kerfuffle concerning undocumented immigrants and legalizing samesex marriage are usually competing and unresolved hot-button issues for voters heading toward the ballot box. Immigration advocates and LGBTQ rights groups have long tried to get its constituencies working together. H i s to r i c a l ly, the efforts have been abysmal. But organizations like Casa de Maryland, a community organization advocating for undocumented immigrants has formed an alliance with Equality Maryland and the Latino GLBT History Project. This might be the first such alliance in the country. Voter outcome of this alliance will determine its success. The alliance, albeit not an uncontentious union, will allow proponents for in-state tuition for undocumented immigrants and/or same-sex marriage to pull support from each other’s base at the ballot box. Theoretically the move is brilliant. It’s a strength-through-unity approach. Citing an April report from the Pew Hispanic Center, it revealed that 59 percent of Latinos accept lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) Americans. And a report released by the National Council of La Raza and Social Science Research Solutions in April found that 54 percent of Hispanics support samesex marriage, a higher percentage than the general population. And certainly a far greater percentage than in my community. In 2008, according to the Pew Research Center, approximately 95 percent of the African American populace cast their
ballot for Obama, and only 26 percent were in favor of same-sex marriage. Before Obama publicly announced his support for marriage equality in May, according to Pew results in April, 49 percent of African Americans were not in favor of same-sex marriage while only 39 percent were. And since Obama’s announcement endorsing marriage equality some African American ministers have come out more vociferously against Obama. Similarly, conservative Latino religious leaders are strong opponents against marriage equality and have come out forcefully against the alliance. “Why does man want to redefine what God already established?” Paredes yelled as the congregation nodded and clapped. “Man is not the inventor of marriage! God is!” The Rev. Heber D. Paredes of Iglesia Roca de la Eternidad, a Hispanic Pentecostal church in Landover Hills, espouses a typical and uninformed statement about marriage. Like most religious homophobes he’s a prominent cleric in conservative circles and his influence is far-reaching. His community clout with parishioners is as strong and powerful as that of African American ministers. These Latino religious leaders see the alliance of immigration and same-sex marriage as a ballot box initiative not
only as exploitative, but also as a deal with the devil—they feel deeply betrayed. Do they have to compromise their theological beliefs to gain legal documentation. Religiously conservative families feel Casa has veered from its mission in order to promulgate a gay agenda under the guise of helping Latino immigrants or as the only way it will help Latino immigrants. “It surprises me,” said Maria Delgado, 30, of Hyattsville, who was attending services with her six children. “Because really they help people to work, they help people with families.” Casa has provided immigrant services to Latino families through the years. Founded in 1985, Casa “was created in response to the human needs of the thousands of Central Americans arriving to the D.C. area after fleeing wars and civil strife in their countries of origin.” Overlooked and too often not reported on are the thousands of Central Americans coming to the U.S. fleeing anti-gay persecution. These Central Americans are not only here because of the civil wars going on in their countries but they are also here because of their sexual orientation, or Trans identity or HIV status. Central American countries like Panama, Nicaragua, Belize, Honduras, to name just a few, do not allow its LGBTQ citizens to serve openly in the
With the non-retention of three justices and targeting of a fourth, however, we cannot be confident for the foreseeable future that the cancer of politics has not successfully infected the judiciary.
Jonathan Wilson is an attorney at the Davis Brown Law Firm in Des Moines, and chairs the First Friday Breakfast Club (ffbciowa.org), an educational, non-profit corporation for gay men in Iowa who gather on the first Friday of every month to provide mutual support, to be educated on community affairs, and to further educate community opinion leaders with more positive images of gay men. It is the largest breakfast club in the state of Iowa. He can be contacted at JonathanWilson@DavisBrownLaw.com.
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Latino activists join with marriage activists. Will it work? by Rev. Irene Monroe
Overlooked and too often not reported on are the thousands of Central Americans coming to the U.S. fleeing antigay persecution
Rev. Irene Monroe is a graduate from Wellesley College and Union Theological Seminary at Columbia University, and she has served as a pastor at an AfricanAmerican church before coming to Harvard Divinity School for her doctorate as Ford Fellow. She is a syndicated queer religion columnist who tries to inform the public of the role religion plays in discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people. Her website is irenemonroe.com. military, or recognize same-sex unions, marriages and adoptions. And none of these countries have a hate crime bill. But attitudes and times are changing for a younger generation. Younger generations of LGBTQ Central Americans here in the states are not only coming out to their families but they are helping others in their communities to come out. Because they see the intersectionality of oppressions that makes it easier for them to form alliances.
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Section 1: News & Politics
ACCESSline Page 9
Digging Deeper interview by Amber Dunham
In 2010, high school student Amber Dunham participated in a class assignment to ask someone 20 questions for an LGBT essay. The person Amber chose to ask was Alexis, a transgendered woman from the Iowa City area. This is the second portion of The Interview and will include questions from several individuals. Most of these people have already read
the first interview, and I have asked them to think about more questions they might want answers to. Some are again from Amber. Some of the other questions have simply unintentionally come up in ordinary conversations with people and were completely unplanned or unsolicited, but I consider them worthy of additional comment. Others simply seek more in-depth information on one of the previous 20 questions. Any questions or comments for Alexis can be sent care of this publication to Editor@ACCESSlineIOWA.com. 9) I have read where there have been some males who have sought the SRS because they felt they were gay, and were looking to legitimize their feelings and relationships. Is this how you felt before the transition and surgeries? There is a fairly common misconception about those of us who consider ourselves either transgender or transsexual. The assumption is that MtF and FtM transsexuals belong to the GLBT community, but this is certainly not always the case. The sexual orientation of both male and female transsexuals can vary a great deal, just as it can with everyone else. While a MtF transsexual can indeed feel attracted to men, and FtM transsexuals can certainly feel drawn towards women, we can also be bisexual or even asexual. In fact, I believe that the first MtF transsexual that I ever personally met would fit that description quite appropriately, though others I met later certainly did not. The decision as to whether someone would be a good candidate for the SRS surgery does not simply hinge on their sexual feelings and orientation. As was mentioned earlier, there are standards that most psychiatrists and psychologists who are trained in SRS counseling techniques typically follow. It is up to
them, over a period of time in which they consult with the prospective candidate, to decide if an individual would be happy, and able to function satisfactorily in their new role, or not. It is up to these counselors to make it clear to the candidate what the negative aspects of any transition can bring, for there can be many—possible loss of job, friends, family, a possible need to relocate, likely a reduced income and other factors. Many are underemployed and living in the streets. The main determination is based on how much difficulty a potential SRS candidate is having coping with the conflicts between the mental and emotional, as well as physical, aspects of their current life. The end result is to come to a decision of how any individual would best be able to live contently. In my case, I would say unequivocally that I did not feel like I was gay before the surgery. Your question seems a little stereotypical in many ways, possibly because gay and lesbian people are so common in our society. A transsexual is not necessarily gay. And gay men and trans-
sexual women are certainly not one in the same. If you look at the reality of the situation, a male gender identity is what a gay man has. A gay man or a lesbian woman is simply attracted to others of the same sex or gender for their sexual encounters. A gay man or a lesbian woman would likely not want to have SRS surgery because they like their respective masculinity or femininity and seek the same in their partners. A MtF woman, on the other hand, may have the SRS surgery because they feel as if they already have a female gender identity, and simply wish to change their physical body to match their mental identity. As I mentioned earlier, I have been
asexual for a long time, and did not seek the surgery for sexual reasons. In actuality, before I transitioned and underwent the surgery, having a relationship with a man was not what I wanted to do, although the opportunity did present itself several times. These days, I think about this quite often, actually, and I am still not positive of how I feel. I can see possibilities with certain people of both genders. If I do emerge as a lesbian, I will be just that—a lesbian. I will not seek to have a lesbian relationship, or a heterosexual partner, because I am trying to legitimize any feelings. I am not unwilling to try new and different things, and may well find that I am a girl with varied interests in various things. Perhaps it might be some man I am comfortable with. It could be both, or I could simply continue as I have been for many years.
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label for accessing rights/privileges granted by the state, and (b) limit the use of that term to opposite-gender couples— constitutionally. The case at the trial court level was compelling; the trial court decision was written brilliantly on all constitutional issues raised; and, in the final analysis, the Supreme Court did what it is supposed to do. Every citizen should feel comforted that we have a constitution that means something; a constitution that hamstrings the lynch mob, a constitution that actually protects us against laws that are known or suspected to be unconstitutional from the get-go. Every citizen got a glimpse of what an independent judiciary is supposed to look like. The constitution is not supposed to be simply advisory or a set of policy suggestions; it’s supposed to mean something, in real time, and during the life times of those who claim its protections. To those critics who would have preferred that the Court fashion a decision saying the marriage law is void and, effectively, send it back to the Legislature, I’d ask, “What could the Legislature possibly have come up with that would satisfy the equal protection principles enunciated in Varnum?” That burden should be put squarely on the shoulders of those critics. In the final analysis, the Court courageously found the obvious: equal means equal. Duh!
A transsexual is not necessarily gay. And gay men and transsexual women are certainly not one in the same.
REMARKABLES muster, plus the time, money, and effort it would take for a proper case to be filed testing that to get back to the Supreme Court. It is a cliché, but also true, that “justice delayed is justice denied.” Besides that, I think the Court was confident that there was no alternative that the Legislature could come up with that would be constitutional unless the Legislature were to get the state out of the business of “marriage” entirely (which the Legislature could still do to this day). The Legislature could decide that the state would issue (non-discriminatorily) civil union licenses to all citizens wanting that; and use that license as the new shorthand for accessing rights/privileges traditionally given to married folks by the state. Couples wanting to get “married” would have to find a church to do it. An unintended but inevitable consequence would be that no Iowa citizen would be legally considered married for purposes of accessing federal rights/privileges because those are available to couples deemed “married,” with “marriage” defined by each state. No Iowans would be deemed legally married under Iowa law. In short, the Iowa Supreme Court concluded that there was virtually nothing that the Legislature could possibly do to (a) preserve the use of the “marriage”
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REV MONROE For example, “as a gay, undocumented immigrant from Guatemala, Edwin Guil, 22, says he is used to being discriminated against. But when a gay friend recently said he was not going to vote for President Obama because of his program to stop deporting some undocumented immigrant youths, Guil, a college student, decided it was time
for some cross-cultural education.” The future for disenfranchised groups to thrive is to form alliances, ones that not only strengthens their causes, but ones that genuinely unites us across our difference. The Latino community in Maryland is operating, as least theoretically, within a paradigm we social justice activists espouse. Come November, the voter outcome will determine the success of the alliance forged with Casa de Maryland, Equality Maryland and Latino GLBT History Project. The proof is in the pudding.
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Section 1: News & Politics
Missing Components from Bullying Prevention Programs by Warren J. Blumenfeld Social Contexts and Engagement
While studying a number of bullying prevention programs, I find many that, while providing good overall theoretical and conceptual foundations and strategies for prevention and reduction of incidents, I perceive crucial components missing from these programs, namely the social and cultural contexts wherein bullying attitudes and behaviors often stem and ways to comprehend and engage in correcting these larger social and cultural contexts. I contend that we must not view bullying and harassment as simply youth problems and behaviors, but rather, investigate the contexts in which bullying “trickles down” from the larger society and is reproduced within the schools. Young people, through the process of social learning, often acquire bullying and harassing attitudes and behaviors, and also often learn the socially sanctioned targets for their aggressive behaviors. The developmental and educational psychologist, Albert Bandura, proposed that young people learn primarily through observation, and that one’s culture transmits social mores and what Bandura called “complex competencies” through social modeling. As he noted, the root meaning of the word “teach” is “to show.” Society presents many role models, from very positive and affirming to very negative, biased, aggressive, and destructive. Modeling, he asserted, is composed of more than concrete actions, which he referred to as “response mimicry,” but also involves abstract concepts, “abstract modeling,” such as following rules, taking on values and beliefs, making moral and ethical judgments. As young people observe negative role modeling in the society, at home, in the media, at school, and other social
sites, this can result in them taking on prejudicial judgments and aggressive or violent behaviors. Youth can learn behaviors, like verbal and physical aggression, by observing and imitating others even in the absence of behavioral reinforcements. Bandura found that young people can be highly influenced by observing adult behavior, and perceive that such behavior is acceptable, while freeing their own aggressive inhibitions. They are then more likely to behave aggressively in future situations. Those who bully, therefore, often fulfill the social “function” of establishing and reinforcing the norms stemming from their environment. They often justify their behaviors by blaming the targets of their attacks, and emphasizing that they somehow deserve the aggression because they in some ways deviate from established societal standards. In a 2010 National Civility Survey by KRC Research & Weber Sandwick, 65% of respondents reported that incivility is a “major problem” in the U.S., and 71% asserted that it has “worsened recently.” So, what messages (or double messages) are we modeling for youth that seep into the schools, messages they assimilate and manifest as bullying and harassing behaviors? In answering this question, I could provide an inexhaustible list, but I would like, instead, to discuss just a few in two primary realms—the electoralpolitical and business, that might tend to go unnoticed because they have become so thoroughly incorporated into the social and cultural fabric and, thereby, tend to avoid scrutiny while seeming rather
“normal,” or at least neutral. What kinds of messages are we sending young people as we as a society promote and validate restaurant chains like Hooters (as well as Girlie Pancake House whose motto is “They’re Better Stacked”) where potential servers whose bodies fall outside the proverbial hourglass shape with manifestly large breasts need not apply, and TV commercials that codify rigid socially constructed gender roles where girls and women clean and cook and boys and men engage in dangerous activities, work outside the home, and “protect” the womenfolk? And what are the messages as state after state and politician after politician attempt to pass legislation restricting women’s rights to control their bodies, including needless and invasive interuterine ultrasound procedures, while also attempting to defund family planning and medical clinics like Planned Parenthood, which serve the health needs of women from all walks of life? What kinds of messages are we sending young people as state after state and politician after politician attempt to pass or have actually passed Constitutional amendments limiting marriage to a union between one man and one woman, which has been codified in the GOP 2012 Platform stating in part: “…we believe that marriage, the union of one man and one woman must be upheld as the national standard,” and where for many years the so-called “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, Don’t Pursue” military policy forced lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender potential recruits and active personnel to lie about
ever. Worse than killing babies, even. Seriously. “The movement that you are fighting,” says Santorum, “is the most important cultural movement.” He then interrupts himself midsentence to make very clear that he means the most important, saying, “I’m a prolife warrior, I’ll match up my credentials with anybody,” and then continuing, “It is the most important movement to win because if we do not win this issue of marriage not only will the family disintegrate. It is disintegrating.” Santorum then cites some statistics about 19 year olds not getting married as often as they did in 1972 or some sh*t “because we are destroying the institution.” But let’s look again at his declaration. Santorum and “prolife warriors” like him believe very strongly that abortion is akin
to murder. And now Santorum is saying that keeping two ladies from saying “I do” is more important than protecting the life of the unborn. This shows how very desperate the fight against marriage equality has become and how low Santorum, an anti-gay poster boy, has sunk. Granted, not everybody thinks of abortion as baby murder, but for folks who do—ahem, Santorum—it’s hard to imagine anything trumping that issue. Until now. “We want to be on the side of truth,” Santorum says. And, let’s face it, babies don’t understand abstract concepts like truth. Or freedom. Or equality. They can’t make protest signs. They can’t vote. They can’t run for office. Gays and lesbians, on the other hand, are actually formidable opponents. And they know good and damn well what truth, freedom, and equality mean. Santorum, however, has a very different definition. Regarding marriage equality he says, “Are all things equal? Is everything equal to everything else? Or are there differ-
Young people, through the process of social learning, often acquire bullying and harassing attitudes and behaviors, and also often learn the socially sanctioned targets for their aggressive behaviors.
Creep of the Week by D’Anne Witkowski Rick Santorum
Look, loyal readers of my column. I know what you’re going to say: “Rick Santorum again? Haven’t you written enough about this douche bag filled with methane gas? He’s not even running for or even in office. At this point paying him any mind, even to call him a creep, is just encouraging him.” And to that I say, you are correct. But what can I say? He’s just so, well, creepy. And so obsessed with gays. So if making Rick Santorum Creep of the Week for the millionth time is wrong I don’t want to be right. On Oct. 11, National Coming Out Day no less, Santorum spoke before the Family Policy Institute of Washington. As you know, Washington is one of three states that could legalize marriage equality in November. Naturally Santorum waxed pathetic about how two dudes marrying is the worst thing
Naturally Santorum waxed pathetic about how two dudes marrying is the worst thing ever. Worse than killing babies, even.
Warren J. Blumenfeld is associate professor in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at Iowa State University in Ames, Iowa. He is editor of Homophobia: How We All Pay the Price (Beacon Press), and co-editor of Readings for Diversity and Social Justice (Routledge) and Investigating Christian Privilege and Religious Oppression in the United States (Sense). www.warrenblumenfeld.com who they love and where some politicians are advocating going back to those oppressive days; and where many school boards remain intransigent by refusing to enumerate “sexual identity” and “gender identity and expression” among protected categories in bullying prevention legislation; and where the Boy Scouts of America forbids membership to gay, bisexual, and transgender scouts and scout leaders? What kinds of messages are we sending young people as politicians represent our President as “illegitimate” for allegedly not having been born in the United States, by characterizing the Affordable Health Care Act (which they refer to “Obamacare”) as left-wing European-style socialism that will result in government dependency, and where political posters depict Mr. Obama as a stereotyped African medicine man wearing virtually only a loin cloth and bones and feathers on his head, all serving as coded racist language and visuals to call into question the patriotism and “Americanism” of our biracial leader? What kinds of messages are we
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ences? Are some things better than other things? Are some things more worthy of support than other things? Equality is a great term just like freedom is a great term but in excess it undermines the virtue that each is. The greatest threat to freedom is unbridled freedom. Everybody going out and doing whatever they wanna do. Red light, green light, I don’t care I’m free! The greatest threat to equality is equality that shows no discernment, has no basis for value.” Hear that homos? Stop f*cking up equality with your valueless lives. The Constitution, Santorum says, “is the operator’s manual of America.” He then holds up a facsimile of his vision for what an amendment to ban gay marriage would look like: An Ikea-like diagram of a penis going into a vagina, resulting in heterosexual American flag baby. “America at its soul,” he says, “is a moral enterprise.” Yes. Just ask the Native Americans. Santorum then rambles on about building a just society. But don’t get any funny ideas, gays. It doesn’t include you.
ACCESSline’s fun guide Perks of Being Ezra Our Picks for November The Miller Interview by Chris Azzopardi 10/26-11/11, Stoner Theater, Des Moines, Iowa, Evil Dead: The Musical, StagewestIowa.com 11/1-11, Theatre Cedar Rapids, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Underground New Play Festival, TheatreCR.org 11/2, The Garden Nightclub, Des Moines, Iowa, Mr/ Miss Vogue Iowa USofA, MissGayIowa.com 11/2, Club CO2, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, New Kings on the Block : Gone till November, Club-CO2.com 11/4, FLIXX Lounge & Cabaret, Omaha, Nebraska, The Gong Show, ImperialCourtOfNebraska.org 11/4, Clarion Hotel, Springfield Missouri, Miss
Gay Missouri Springfield American Pageant, MGMPageantry.com
11/9-12/2, Des Moines Community Playhouse, Des Moines, Iowa, Little House Christmas At Plum Creek, Ad p.18 11/10, Ritual Café, Des Moines, Iowa, Second Son Reading by Ryan Sallans, RyanSallans.com 11/10, Sioux City Community Theatre, Sioux City, Iowa, Mr/Miss Midwest Icon Iowa USofA, MissGayIowa.com 11/10, McElroy Auditorium, Waterloo, Iowa, SMASH
Military Appreciation Roller Derby Bout, CVDerbyDivas.com
11/11, Des Moines Iowa, Pride & Prejudice, Center, The Benefit a Veteran’s Day Salute, AIDSProjectCI.org 11/11, The Max, Omaha, Nebraska, Food for Thought, ImperialCourtofNebraska.org 11/14, Stephens Auditorium, Ames, Iowa, Vienna Boys Choir, Center.IAState.edu 11/17, Five Sullivan Brothers Convention Center, Waterloo, Iowa, CAAP Benefit 2012, Ad p. 36 11/20-25, Des Moines Civic Center, Des Moines, Iowa, Beauty and the Beast, CivicCenter.org 11/23, Theatre Cedar Rapids, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Meet Me In Saint Louis, TheatreCR.org 11/29, Stephens Auditorium, Ames, Iowa, Kathy Griffin, Ad p.12
12/1, Magnolia Hotel, Omaha, Nebraska, Night of A Thousand Stars, NAP.org 12/2, Wooly’s, Des Moines, Iowa, Miss Gay Iowa 2013, MissGayIowa.com 12/7-30, Des Moines Community Playhouse, Des Moines, Iowa, The Wizard of Oz, DMPlayhouse.com
Photo courtesy of Summit Entertainment.
Breakthrough actor talks gay teen role, why he’s queer and doing drag as a kid
Twenty is a young age to have already played two characters that couldn’t be any more different. But Ezra Miller’s done it with parts as Tilda Swinton’s evil son in We Need to Talk About Kevin and as Patrick, the lovable outsider with swagger and fearlessness in the film adaptation of the coming-of-age novel The Perks of Being a Wallflower—the boy every gay person wishes he could be. Even Miller. The young actor talked about not being that kid in high school, breaking label barriers and coming from a “whole queer-ass family”—who dressed him in drag. What was your high school experience? Were you out then? Yeah, definitely. But I wasn’t shouting it out. I was unabashedly me. I was always having to leave high school, though, because I started working, so that was pulling me out of school. When I’d come back, there was a certain resentment: “You are no longer one of us. You have betrayed our pack.” And I dropped out of high school when I was 16 years old because, first of all, the form and function of the schooling system never made any sense to me in the context of education, but also there was some ostracizing at play. At that point in my youth experience, I knew that feeling all too well. I immediately realized that I had just turned 16 and that it was best, and technically legal, for me to flee. How was it playing a character
that you wished you could’ve been in school? I came out of the movie feeling like I had a bunch to learn from the character I just played, and then I came to the unfortunate conclusion that he was a fictional character and he didn’t exist. I mean, to be able to hold your dignity and your pride, and to be able to empower yourself and love yourself in high school, is a feat. That scene where you stand up for yourself in the lunchroom was probably something that hit close to home. Yeah. You picture that moment where you effectively fight back, but then of course Patrick does, in that situation, end up getting held and pummeled and sort of relentlessly beaten on—that’s a reality, too. You can cultivate all of the courage and pride and power to stand up for yourself and still get beat to a pulp. I had that experience a few times. That scene was so important to everyone—to (director) Stephen (Chbosky) but really to (co-star) Johnny (Simmons) and myself. Having experienced things like that in our lives, we were really determined to get some bruises to make that fight brutal, the way that sort of peer-inflicted violence is—just horribly brutal. Bullying is brutal, and it’s obviously become an epidemic in the last few years. What do you think young people who are victims of bullying might find empowering about Patrick? I’m hoping that there could be a theoretical audience member who could watch Patrick in this fearless state of self-preservation and rebellion and come to the thought that anyone who dares
You can cultivate all of the courage and pride and power to stand up for yourself and still get beat to a pulp.
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The Fun Guide
The Mirage with The Kings & Queens of the Night 12/1
Hugh Jindapants. Courtesy of Paranoid Peachezz.
Tatianna Cass. Courtesy of Gleam Imaging. The University of Iowa will host The Mirage featuring The Kings and Queens of the Night on Saturday, December 1st, 2012 from 10pm – 2am in the 2nd Floor Ballroom of the Iowa Memorial Union, Iowa City, Iowa.
If you are interested in performing as an amateur, please email Steph Beecher at firstname.lastname@example.org. Prizes will be awarded. The event will also have a condom casino, free rapid HIV testing courtesy of Johnson County Public Health, and free food.
Connie Shewa. Courtesy of Gleam Imaging. Franky D Lover. Courtesy of Paranoid Peachezz. The event will feature amateur drag performers, and professional performances from drag queens, drag kings, and burlesque dancers. Headlining drag queens include Gina Belle, Tatianna Cass, and Connie Shewa. Headlining kings include members of the I.C. Kings: Franky D. Lover, Hugh Jindapants, and Julius Fever. Les Dames du Burlesque will also perform. Miss Kitty will emcee.
Julius Fever. Courtesy of Julius Fever.
The event is sponsored by Health Iowa/Student Health Service and the LGBT Resource Center. The purpose of The Mirage is to promote diversity on campus, endorse the ‘Stretch’ component of the Iowa Challenge, and raise awareness for World AIDS Day. The event is open to both students and community members.
Gina Belle. Courtesy of Gleam Imaging.
The Fun Guide
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The New Kings on the Block Change it Up
Eva Nicole and Jayden Knight, The New Kings on the Block. Photo courtesy of Jill of All Trades Productions. The New Kings on the Block performed October 12th at Club CO2 located at 616 2nd Ave SE Cedar Rapids, Iowa to raise awareness and money for breast cancer in celebration of Breast Cancer Awareness
Month. Former show director Butterfly raised more than $400 from donations and raffle tickets sold at the show. During intermission over 12 inches of Butterfly’s hair was cut off and donated to Pantene Beautiful Lengths to be made into a wig for cancer patients. Over 15 businesses contributed gift certificates, clothing, and other prizes to raffle off. Butterfly left the group after the October show to pursue other opportunities in stand-up comedy. Taking over the microphone are Jazmine Fritz and Chelsea Joy Lob, two outgoing and energetic best friends with a passion for entertaining the crowd. Chelsea recently moved back to Iowa from the Minneapolis/St. Paul area and brings
with her a fresh new take on styles. Marketing and Creative Director for the New Kings on the Block, Alana Hyatt, will have several pieces of artwork exhibited at the Chait Galleries Downtown in Iowa City, Iowa November 9th through January 4th, 2013 for the Small Works Show. Jayden Knight will hold a benefit drag show at Club CO2 on Thursday, November 15th to help send her to the state male impersonator pageant in Burlington, Iowa on December 8th. Several members from New Kings on the Block will perform at this special show. Starting in December, New Kings on the Block will perform the second Friday of the month at Club CO2. The December 14th
show will feature a sexual health awareness theme of “Wrap your Package” with several surprise guests and gifts. A merchandise booth at the show will feature artwork, jewelry, and clothing crafted by local artists for sale. A big thank you to Granite City, Ramseys in Marion, Carlos O’ Kellys, Ulta Beauty Products, Reds Pub-Downtown Cedar Rapids, Down Town Wrigley, Thirdbase Brew, Cocktails and Company, Arbys, Second Avenue Corner Pocket, Fleck Sales CR IC, Beef O’ Bradys Cedar Rapids, Union Station, American Cancer Society. For more information on The New Kings on the Block look for them on Facebook and Club-CO2.com.
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The Fun Guide
Inside Out: The God’s Truth by Ellen Krug You guessed it: I visited Bob Vander Plaats’ The FAMiLY Leader website and viewed a video on why Iowa Supreme Court Justice David Wiggins should be fired a few days from now. It was an excursion into complete fantasy. The video begins by categorizing April 3, 2009 (the day the Iowa Supreme Court ruled for gay marriage in Varnum v. Brien) as a “Day of Infamy.” For those who don’t know, Franklin Roosevelt vocalized “Day of Infamy” to rally the nation after Pearl Harbor. Apparently, the Iowa Supreme Court allowed gay marriage to sneak up on Iowa just like the Japanese snuck up on Pearl Harbor. If I was a WW II vet, I’d be pissed that Vander Plaats would equate an act of war with an act of love. Something tells me that Vander Plaats has never seen combat. The video charges that the “arrogant Left” has an agenda to not only end marriage for straight people, but to rid good right wing Christians of AR-15s and Glocks with super-capacity magazines. Once that’s accomplished, the Left will go after everyone’s private property. All of this anarchy will derive from two men or two women simply saying “I do.” Three minutes into the video, we hear that law comes from God and not from men. That’s despite the Iowa Constitution’s admonition that the Legislature shall pass “no law respecting the establishment of religion.” The pinnacle is a three second shot of Justice Wiggins on what appears to be a panel of attorneys in a seminar room; my guess is that was a continuing legal education event. The video catches Justice Wiggins saying, “So, tell me in your best way how we can get around the Iowa Constitution.” Talk about taking something out of context. Obviously, Justice Wiggins was responding to a question about the propriety of the Varnum decision. “So tell me…” was rhetorical, since there’s no way to
avoid the Iowa Constitution mandate that everyone—Gs and Ls included—be treated equally. “Equal” means equal: straights are no better than Gs and Ls. As a result, everyone can marry. Vander Plaats and The Family Leader don’t recognize the power of Iowa’s Constitution. They’d rather let their God decide everything. They’d also rather take things out of context to make something out of nothing. God is their convenient excuse to unseat every Justice who decided the Varnum case. My guess is that most of the people who want Wiggins gone haven’t even read the Varnum decision. Otherwise, they’d know that Iowa has often been at the forefront of protecting individual rights. In 1839—more than twenty years before the Civil War, Iowa refused to enforce a slave contract, and declared that human beings weren’t property that could be bought or sold. Later, Iowa was the first state in the then-United States to admit a woman to practice law. It was the first state west of the Mississippi to admit an African American lawyer. The progressiveness didn’t stop there. In 1948, almost two decades before federal courts in the South took action against Jim Crow, an Iowa court ruled that downtown Des Moines needed to desegregate its lunch counters. Be proud of this history. Protecting G’s and L’s is simply another step in Iowa’s long journey of being good to humans. Midway through the Varnum decision, the Iowa Supreme Court observed, “(a) statute inconsistent with the Iowa Constitu-
tion must be declared void, even though it may be supported by strong and deep-seated traditional beliefs and popular opinion.” In other words, personal rights like liberty and freedom trump any religious or other popularity contest. It has to be this way. Can you imagine the vote if there had been a national referendum in 1955 on whether white and black kids should attend the same schools? How about 1967 and whether two racial groups could marry? It’s not that Vander Plaats and his followers are too stupid to understand this. They just ignore the Constitution they supposedly seek to redeem. They don’t care about human dignity or rights. For them, “homosexuality” (their word, not mine) is a choice, and the “homosexual lifestyle” a “public health risk.” It’s true because their God said it’s so. Two years ago, I implored readers to take action to stop Vander Plaats from unseating three of Wiggins’ Supreme Court colleagues. This time the effort to fire a Supreme Court Justice has much greater significance, since getting rid of Wiggins would tell all Iowa judges that the politics or religious affiliation of someone appearing before a court must be taken into account. You can forget about “blind” justice. It’s pure human nature to be afraid for one’s job and whether you’ll be able to provide for yourself and loved ones. If Wiggins goes because of Vander Plaats, every Iowa judge will second guess his or her decision-making. Suddenly, you’re in a new judicial arena, one shaped by crazy people who have the power to threaten judges. No one will be safe. Iowa would again be making history,
only this time in a really bad way. What should our community do to end this nonsense? For one, get off the couch. This is our fight. Wiggins is exposed because he did the right thing—he applied good law to our Tribe. He and those other six Supreme Court Justices put their careers on the line for you and me. The least we can do is vote for Wiggins’ retention (well, actually I can’t vote in Iowa anymore, but you get the point). You can also tell everyone you know to do the same thing. People need to take this damn seriously. Iowa’s future as a place of tolerance and inclusion is at stake. Once we lose the rule of law, we literally lose everything. Think Wild West. Finally, you need to pray and hope that your God—or whatever you believe in—is more powerful and open minded than Vander Plaats’ God. I’ve got to think our God is the truth.
So, on a bit of a whim, I went to a late showing of Janeane From Des Moines at the Fleur Cinema. I’d only heard about it obliquely; knew that it was politically oriented; and starred the author, Jane E. Wilson (coincidently, the name of one of my sisters). I also knew that it was filmed at various locations around Iowa and took place during the lead-up to the Republican presidential caucuses. Janeane Wilson, playing herself, is a rather frumpy 48 year old married woman with a decidedly conservative bent, hooked on her fundamentalist church, and facing an array of mounting problems in her personal life that she didn’t deserve if God had anything to do with it. She successively becomes enamored with one Republican candidate after another, goes to their events, wheedles her way to the front of the pack of reporters that surrounds them, and poses questions to each of them in her effort to decide which one she will support. The questions are increasingly
anguished as her problems multiply. Her employment hours are being cut, partly because she doesn’t relate well to people. Her husband loses his trucking job, and with that the family loses its health insurance and can’t make house payments. The tortured woman then discovers a lump in her breast, and her longtime doctor declines to see her without proof of insurance or financial means to pay. She seeks guidance from her prayer group, without success, and tries to get her husband to counseling with their pastor, but hubby refuses. Then she discovers that her husband is hanging out at the Garden (a gay nightclub), where she goes to confront him, and mortifies herself in the process. In one exchange with Mitt Romney
she is in tears wanting to know what he would do to help families like hers that are struggling financially and lack health insurance. He, like all the other candidates, utters platitudes that are useless to her, and he hugs her in an apparently genuine attempt to comfort her. In another exchange, Janeane and Michelle Bachmann share a cup of coffee to discuss for probably ten minutes Janeane’s concerns, especially over health care. Other than the coffee, Janeane merely got more useless platitudes from the exchange. Finally, in desperation, Janeane goes to Planned Parenthood, a “murder factory” as she describes it. To her surprise (and consistent with Planned Parenthood’s operating policies), she is given tests and diagnosis free of charge. The diagnosis
confirms the cancer, in both breasts, and the recommended treatment is double mastectomies, chemo, and radiation. Again she is assured that this can be accomplished without cost to her. She cautiously agrees, adding, “So long as it isn’t Obama Care.” I was torn trying to figure out whether the portrayals were real or fake. Clearly the interactions with candidates were real, the campaign events were authentic, and her other interactions seemed believable. By the same token, I couldn’t figure out how a woman in her circumstances would have had the foreknowledge and wherewithal to arrange in advance for a professional film crew to follow her every move. The latter, while compelling in making the case that it was all staged with the candidates being unwitting supporting actors, was largely trumped by how convincingly the performances were presented. As soon as I got home, I went on line and determined that, in fact, the film is a “mockumentary.” A damn good one at that, and one I highly recommend.
I took a trip to Crazyland the other
The “arrogant Left” has an agenda to not only end marriage for straight people, but to rid good right wing Christians of AR-15s and Glocks with super-capacity magazines. Once that’s accomplished, the Left will go after everyone’s private property.
Ellen Krug, writer, lawyer, human, is presently completing her memoir, “Getting to Ellen: Crossing the Great Gender Divide,” which will be published in 2012. She lives in Minneapolis and works as the executive director of a nonprofit serving the underrepresented. She welcomes your comments at email@example.com.
Janeane From Des Moines: Movie Review by Jonathan Wilson Then she discovers that her husband is hanging out at the Garden (a gay nightclub), where she goes to confront him, and mortifies herself in the process.
The Fun Guide
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Wired This Way by Rachel Eliason
You’ve Been Hacked! Cyber-security, web defacement and you
How an article about TDoR became an article about internet security: November 20th is the Transgender Day of Remembrance. On this day the trans community memorializes all of those killed by hate crimes and hatred of Transgender, Transsexual, and other gender variant individuals. I have been involved in planning public vigils for TDoR for the last four years or so and I even took heat from good ole Bob VanderPlaats. My angry response to Mr. VanderPlaats “You can’t have my pain” was the first article I published in the Accessline. So the day has special meaning for me. It’s a day worth fighting about and for. I try to return to the subject about this time every year with something related to TDoR or at least Trans people. I intend this year to do an article about the “official” TDoR website where a small group of activist research and record the hate crimes and deaths around the world. It’s got to be a tough job and they are the unsung heroes of the trans activist community. Late one Saturday night in September I decided to do some preliminary research for my article. I googled Transgender Day of Remembrance and clicked the first link. This is is what I saw:
I was stunned. After a few minutes I started looking at things more closely. I checked the web address. I was at transgenderor.org. Was that the correct address or had I been redirected to a similar sounding page? Checking over my history I discovered that no, I was on the correct page. Looking at the web page itself I noticed for the first time the writing underneath the gun toting figure. “You’ve been hacked”. Having seen the movies like Enemy of
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EVIL DEAD ingly unleashed. The production is filled with Bruce Cambell’s famous one-liners: “Gimme some sugar baby”, “Groovy”, and the night couldn’t be complete without… “This is my BOOMSTICK”. “Evil Dead: The Musical” is a powerhouse, packed full of everything you loved from the original films, but with more! Comedy is paramount, and the actors shine their brightest in this tongue-and-cheek production. Ben Ward does Bruce Campbell proud in his rendition of Ash—he even has the chin for it! Ash gets all the good looks in: love, lust, curiosity, confusion, fear, and blood frenzied rage—all of his wide-eyed acting is classic. Yet, the best scene has to be that with Linda, or Linda’s head, getting sawn in half—blood flying everywhere and Ash singing through it all.
the State, The Matrix and the classic nineties film Hackers, I have come to expect hackers to be able to do almost magical things. Consequently I suffered a moment of panic. Had they already captured my IP address and figured who I was and where? Would they be waiting on my doorstep when I got home? Had they already emptied my bank accounts and ruined my credit? (I hardly need a hacker to ruin my credit score, student loan and credit card debts have done that already.) I took a deep breath and reminded myself that those were only movies and in the case of Hackers, not a very good one. I started to look over the website and then I did a little digging. It was a website defacement. A website defacement is where a hacker finds a security hole in a public web page and exploits it to gain control of the site. They can then download or delete the page and replace it with their own images, music, and code. In the world of cybersecurity web site defacement is small potatoes. The primary reason is simple enough, very few companies or people put a lot of personal information on a public page. By the same token, for many companies security on a public site is a secondary concern. The CIA public website itself has been hacked not once, but repeatedly. The first time was in the mid nineties and the site was defaced. It created a huge buzz in the press, naturally, but I remember thinking at the time, “Surely they don’t store all the national secrets on the public site?” I was right, the CIA has confirmed repeatedly that anything of value to national security is kept on separate servers that have nothing to do with the public site at all. So is the case with TDoR. I managed to get a hold of the current site administer, Ethan St. Pierre, and inform him of the hacking. He confirmed that there was no personal information of any sort on visitors to the site. They don’t have a member’s login area, they don’t ask for or keep emails. Nothing was taken. The page is hosted on Wordpress. Wordpress is a blog site and web
hosting company. Wordpress itself wasn’t hacked so even the passwords and email addresses of site contributors are safe. Ethan’s view of the incident is that it was an act of petty vandalism by some kids. It’s quite likely that he is right. However I am a geek and every geek wants to think they are a hacker at some level, so I kept digging. The hackers claimed to be with the Turkishajan Hacker Group. It turns out that this group is real, and they have been doing a lot of hacking and defacement’s lately. They also have a lot of hacking tools available for download free on their site, which thanks to google translate is mostly legible to English speakers. As the name implies the Turkishajan is based in Turkey. They are pro-Turkey and Pro-Islam. They often attack and deface sites they consider immoral or offensive to Islam. This included, though I am not sure the connection, the hacking of a Dominoes Pizza chain in India and the stealing of hundreds of customer ID’s and credit card numbers. Did the Turkishajan actually attack the TDoR website? It would appear not. Zone-H, an information site tracking web defacements has found no evidence of that and I have seen nothing on the Turkishajan site taking any personal responsibility for the attack. It does not appear to have been a deliberate attack on my community at any rate. Hacking, according to one of the most famous hackers alive, Kevin Mitner, is an opportunists game. The Turkishajan, like many groups, use “sniffers”—sniffers are programs that systematically probe web addresses for known weaknesses and then exploit them. They have defaced numerous pornographic websites, particularly ones that use words like Transsexual in their keywords. It is possible that TDoR was simply caught in the crossfire, that some combination of keywords and weaknesses triggered a sniffer program and the hacker had no idea what he was actually hitting. So there are three possibilities. The Turkishajan may have done the hack on purpose. They might have done it on accident. Or someone else could have easily downloaded their software and done the hack. In the end we’ll probably never know for sure. I would like to think that even a very conservative individual or group would be able to recognize and respect the difference between TDoR and some porn site that objectifies Trans-women. (There are
Us, living in peace, does not equal you living in danger. If anything the day transpeople live in peace the world will be safer for everyone who is a little different.
Linda (Lauren Shun) is better Deadite than alive, she is the sickeningly sweet lover to Ash but when dead she becomes highly animated by evil. And she doesn’t even need her head! It sits on the counter and mocks Ash from afar, while her body takes a twist and runs after him. Scott (Zander Morales) cannot be forgotten, his potty mouth and insanely high libido see to that! When he isn’t trying to get into the pants of his slutty one-nighter Shelly, he’s dying—all over the place. Scott’s almost, not quite, maybe dead words of wisdom to Ash are flying across the room as much as his guts do. Ash’s sister Cheryl (Bridget Roepke) has a raunchy humor that starts with the eye-popping tree rape scene and continues throughout the night, as she slings insults from the trapdoor. Every time her Deadite head pops out of the floor, you know you
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Rachel Eliason is a forty two year old Transsexual woman. She was given her first computer, a Commodore Vic-20 when she was twelve and she has been fascinated by technology ever since. In the thirty years since that first computer she has watched in awe as the Internet has transformed the LGBT community. In addition to her column, Rachel has published a collection of short stories, Tales the Wind Told Me and is currently working on her debut novel, Run, Clarissa, Run. Rachel can be found all over the web, including on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Goodreads. many trans-women who are offended by pornographic objectification as well.) But sadly I know this isn’t true. Many are just as offended, or even more, by the idea that we would memorialize these people or call out the hatred that led to their deaths. I would remind all of those people of Gandhi’s words; first they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, and then you win. When it comes to trans acceptance, we will win. For much of history we have been ignored. Until very recently movie and TV portrayals of transwomen were stereotypical, shallow, and frequently the butt of a joke. Now you are fighting us. We’re almost there. In the end we will win for two simple reasons. One, we have to. This is our lives we are talking about. There is nothing different or unique about the people on the TDoR list. These hate crimes don’t just occur in distant places like Brazil, Turkey or India. They happen all over. It could easily be me, or someone I know, on that list next year. Making you understand that I am just another human being, wanting to live in peace, is a life or death issue. I have to win. But it’s a fight you won’t lose either. Contrary to what you might think, or have been told, the existence of a strong vibrant trans community does not threaten conservative religious faith, be it Christian or Muslim. Our movement does not call for reprisals. Us, living in peace, does not equal you living in danger. If anything the day trans-people live in peace the world will be safer for everyone who is a little different.
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Just Sayin’ by Beau Fodor Be Kind This Holiday Season
Recently, I was asked to write a column about Holiday entertaining. Instantly, I started to stress the way I do on Black Friday— only worse! I’ve done my research and my experiences with family and special-event planning give me a great perspective, however; it really depends on your perception of the Holiday Season. I have cherished memories of holidays’ past; from shopping with my Grandmother at Macy’s on 34Th Street in N.Y.C. as a child, Vegetarian Thanksgivings in Santa Cruz, California, to hard-candy Christmas’ on my farm in Clare, Iowa, and now “Festival of Trees” for Blank Children’s’ Hospital at Wells Fargo Arena in the States’ Capitol. My most important tip for the Holidays—just be kind. Be kind to yourself, your partner, your families, and friends. They love you, and are going through this same Holiday ordeal, and honestly would prefer something hand or homemade...even if it’s just a hand-written, heart-felt note. Here are a few tips I’ve found personally useful... 1. Think quality not quantity. It is so easy to overdo everything during the holidays. Buy more, cook more, and absolutely party more! But when the flurry of activity and spending is over, we’re often left with a sense of “is that all there is?” What we miss in the process of doing and attaining more, more, more is the small moments
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RED WING national field director for the Human Rights Campaign and for Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation. I was Howard Dean’s liaison to the LGBTQ community, and I was on Obama’s “Kitchen Cabinet” when he was first running for the presidency—he had a “Kitchen Cabinet” of three people who advised him on LGBTQ issues. And way back when, in the early 90s, I was executive director at the Lesbian Community Project in Portland Oregon. That’s quite a résumé! As I’m telling you this I’m just kind of smiling remembering all of the incredible things you get to do and people you get to meet when you work in this great movement of ours. What have been a couple of highlights? Oh, gosh, there are the profound highlights, like winning against the radical religious right in Oregon in 1992 after years of what felt like being at war and actually winning against their amendments. And then the kind of silly things that you just love, like the time I got to spend a couple of hours with George Clooney and just to get to know him as a person. And everything in between. [Laughs.] What made you decide on moving to One Iowa? I was living in a beautiful home on top of a mountain in Colorado. (So it doesn’t get any better than that, right?) And I was running an organization called Grassroots Leadership, which worked around the country on immigrant rights and most specifically around
The Fun Guide
that make the holidays memorable. Don’t take on more than you can comfortably, happily handle. 2. Shop locally and seasonally. Besides avoiding buying unnecessary items, we can take the “conscientious holiday shopping” a step further and shop locally for those items we decide to purchase. Get as much food for your feast as you can from local growers and food producers, and shop for gifts made by local artisans. Two great resources for this are Local Harvest, which can help you locate everything from local heritage turkeys to organically grown heirloom broccoli, and Etsy, which has a fabulous “shop local” section. 3. Don’t buy special “holiday” items. Before Halloween has even passed, most retailers start stocking their aisles full of turkey-themed napkins and red-and-green… well, just about everything. Americans buy this stuff up in the hopes of making our homes look more festive and welcoming. But there is nothing more welcoming than a home that is naturally comfortable and livedin. Why buy a set of fall-themed dinnerware when you have a perfect set of white dishes that you use every day? Simply add some cloth napkins in fall colors, a few candles,
and a simple centerpiece of pumpkins and pinecones. Now you have something that evokes the harvest much better than any store-bought place setting could have. The same goes for Christmas, Kwanzaa, and Hanukah. Personalize what you already have, and leave those themed holiday items at the store. 4. Spend time, not money. Don’t spend your evenings at the mall. Spend them with friends and family instead. This is one of those things everyone says they’re going to do differently, and then the insanity of the season grabs on and won’t let go. Let’s think of it this way: what would you rather look back on—a night spent with a bunch of stressed-out holiday shoppers in an overcrowded mall? Or a night spent around the table with your best friends or closest family? Kind of a no-brainer, right? If you’re hosting, remember; it’s about the time together and not going completely overboard with the food and drink and so on. 5. DIY holidays. Spend time this year making festive up-cycled decorations, baking cookies to snack on, and making dinners that you’ll really enjoy. This doesn’t mean you need to be Martha Stewart. It means choosing a few activities that have meaning for you, and
Before Halloween has even passed, most retailers start stocking their aisles full of turkey-themed napkins and red-and-green…well, just about everything. Americans buy this stuff up in the hopes of making our homes look more festive and welcoming.
closing down for-profit immigrant detention centers and for-profit prisons. And it was really hard work and really good work, but I missed working in the LGBTQ community. I also missed being local. I’ve done national work for so long, wherever we’ve lived the neighbors all know my partner, but nobody knows me because I’m never home. And I really wanted community, I wanted to live in a place where if I walked downtown, somebody would know who I was, that I would know my neighbors’ names, and that I would feel like I was part of a community. And so when One Iowa approached me, I had to say yes, for so many reasons. What this work has given me is the ability to live in a place where most of the time I go home at night, most of the time I connect with people that I can connect with tomorrow and the next day and the next day. And that’s really important to me. Working on a state-wide level, you see, incrementally, the steps you take and the successes that you have, and it’s much more tangible than when you’re working on the national level. And One Iowa, we are the largest LGBT group in Iowa, it’s done some amazing work and I think even more exciting than that are the possibilities now. We have marriage, how do we save that, how do we protect it? We look at what’s been called the “anomaly” that is Iowa, even with protection of marriage, how does that play out when a child is born, when we look at family issues, are the protections and the rights of marriage played out fully. And we find that that’s not the case, so we get to work on that. And then I think whether we’re looking at working with our friends who work with young people, and looking at what happens
to a gay man, a lesbian, a bi or a transgender person when they get old in Iowa? What’s that like? And how can we make sure that all of the things that everyone expects as they get older—all the good things—that they happen for our LGBTQ people also. So for me it’s this great challenge, and it’s also this really comfortable place. A lot of people know One Iowa as having focused on the marriage issue, but its statement of purpose goes beyond that. It’s always been about working toward equality for all LGBTQ Iowans. But I think when the issue of marriage has been at the forefront, One Iowa has been laser-beam focused on that. And we continue to be focused on marriage simply because it is so precious and so fragile. I think when we talk about marriage, we talk about this movement of ours, we’re not only talking about politics— we’re talking about real people and real lives. We’re talking about who we are and who we get to be in Iowa. We’re talking about what it feels like to wake up every morning as an LGBTQ person in Iowa, and what our day is going to be like and what our week is going to be like. And so I think that if we say we are working toward the rights of all LGBTQ Iowans—that our focus has to be much wider and much deeper. And clearly there are other groups who do extraordinary work. For example, Iowa Safe schools and Iowa Pride Network who work with young people: how can we support the work that they do? I don’t think that One Iowa is about replicating what anyone does who has the resources or time or willingness to do that, but I think we can support that work.
Beau Fodor is the owner of PANACHE, an Iowa wedding planner who focuses specifically on weddings for the LGBT community. He can be reached at iowasgayweddingplanner.com or his blog PANACHE Points at blogspot.com. Photo courtesy of Billy Porter. really going all out. This is how memories are made, and that’s what the season is all about. 6. Cut the waste. Whether it’s an office holiday party or a small get together with friends, it’s almost a guarantee that food will be served on disposable plates or napkins, drinks will be served in paper or disposable plastic cups, and wrapping paper is just about everywhere. Help eliminate the waste this holiday season by using real dishes and glasses at your parties. If washing dishes seems like
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What are some initiatives with One Iowa? Well, right now, of course, we’re looking at the elections. With our (C)(4) and our PAC—we really have to put that hat on when we talk about it—we’re really looking at maintaining a majority in the Iowa senate so that we will continue to be safe from any initiative to put marriage on the ballot. That was a hard fought struggle last time around and it will probably be again in January. And then of course, Justice Wiggins, the retention of the justices, especially the justice who ruled on Varnum, that’s certainly a focus for us. But we’ve also been traveling around the state talking to Iowans—Iowans who are in our community and Iowans who are conflicted about LGBT rights. For example this summer in August and again in September, we travelled with Zach Wahls. We did eight communities in eight days. In some communities we did five or six or seven events. It was an incredible tour. Zach is wonderful. People came out to see him who may not have come out to see us. Zach is kind of a star, and you know, a lot of moms and dads and grandmas and grandpas came out to see this wonderful young man. And so in many places we were in crowded living rooms, crowded libraries, and people got to hear his story. And his story is really, simply, about a family and the love that a family has for each other, and so that was incredible. So a big piece of our work—with Zach and without him—is to work around the state meeting with people having the conversations, meeting with human rights boards, with civil rights commissions, with churches, and
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INDIGO GIRLS Saliers and Ray began performing together in high school, transferred their honest, urgent performing style onto the stages of countless small clubs, then saw their public profile take off with the 1989 release of their self-titled breakthrough (an album that included the first hit, “Closer To Fine,” and went on to win Best Contemporary Folk Recording at the 1990 Grammys). The duo’s constant touring, as well as staunch dedication to a number of social and environmental causes, has earned them a fervidly devoted following over the years. So many artists who launched their careers in the late 1980s have slipped from our collective memory. In contrast, the Indigo Girls stand tall, having earned the lasting respect and devotion of a multigenerational audience which continues to experience their creative evolution in the studio and on stage. How much have you performed in Iowa? Not enough! We love playing in Iowa. We’ve played most of the major cities in Iowa, but of course, I love Iowa: my brother in law is from Iowa and I know lots of people from Iowa. I think it’s a fascinating state politically, and of course with gay marriage rights—I’m a huge Iowa fan for that, if not for every other reason. Family, friends, politics, great schools, just a really cool and interesting state, a beautiful state. So really, really looking forward to coming back there. You each write your songs individually, then work out the arrangements together, but all your songs seem very universal… Amy and I always wanted to write our own songs, we were just never able to write together. Some people can co-write really easily with some and not as easily with others. It’s just really, very important for us to fall into that natural place over the years of just writing our own songs. Fortunately when we get together we are able to arrange each others’ songs together. So that’s where the real creative collaboration comes in. I think there are some songs that if you know our music you would say, “That’s definitely an Amy song, she wrote that,” or “That’s definitely an Emily Song.” And the one who wrote it sings the song, since typically the melody is written in our own range. So it felt the most comfortable and natural to allow that to happen, independent of creative input, and then to arrange songs together. There’s also a lot of crossover in themes—where there’s political, or social, or even inter-personal, or in terms of nature—a lot of the themes have common ground in both Amy and my songs. And that’s just the nature of what we write about, when we sit down to write, because we’re not trying to meld the songs to have certain content and present ourselves that way. Amy sits down to write what’s on her mind and I sit down and write what’s on mine, and that’s what you get. And a lot of times her sensibilities are different than mine, and if it’s a very different song than one I might write it makes it kind of interesting—definitely for us, and I think for our fans—but there’s enough of a variety within the musical body to keep things interesting for everybody who wants
Indigo Girls . Courtesy of Jeremy Cowart. to be involved in our music. keep practicing and working at it until we And you know, I love the stuff that finally settle on something. she writes, and she loves what I write, so For your entire recording career, there’re never any ego clashes. It’s just you both have been out. Did you have worked out really well. a negative reaction to it then—like Your vocal arrangements are so country singer Chely Wright whose rich and so mesmerizing to listen to. career has been so affected by coming How long does it take you, once you’ve out? written the song, to then arrange the Oh, I would say we experienced harmonies together and what’s the homophobia, and our record company process? didn’t exactly know how to image us. There Some songs take longer than others, were, of course, jokes along the way and some arrange pretty quickly. The process parodies—and there still are, but we don’t is that we send each other recordings of care. We’ve had a wonderful career and it’s the raw demos—Amy records her songs at so much more important for us to be out. her house and I record mine at mine—or I really admire Chely for her courage we play them for each other at a set up to come out, because her fan base and the practice time. Again, I’ll go to her house or fan base of so many country artists is a she comes to mine and we split up practice completely different demographic than time that way. And then we just start brain- ours. That’s not to say that there’s not storming. If it’s her song, she may have a some crossover, but a lot of country music melody and say, “Let’s try banjo on this, eh, speaks to a much more politically and nope, that doesn’t work, let’s try acoustic socially conservative audience than ours. [guitar],” or it may end up being electric. It’s the same thing that happened to the Then we go through the songs and look at Dixie Chicks when they spoke out about the structure and go, “You know, I don’t President Bush and war, and people had think we need any harmony on this first a witch hunt and burned their CDs. That verse, it sounds like it should just be a single stuff just doesn’t happen in our world of voice”—sometimes harmony strengthens music. things and sometimes it just detracts. So One interesting fact about your it’s just an all out brainstorming session career: you were nominated for Best to try to construct what really resonates New Artist in 1990. How does it feel with both of us. And when we get there, knowing that you didn’t win that honor, we know. A lot of times we’ll sit with an but that Milli Vanilli did? arrangement and we know it’s not quite [Laughs.] Well, it’s kind of the story right, either a harmony line, or something that never goes away which is fun. That needs to be taken away or added. We just was such a big deal back then. I mean,
ACCESSline Page 21 everybody lip syncs now. It’s hard to imagine now that it was even a big deal then. So there was the little bit of fun in the mystery of going, “Well, if they hadn’t won and then gotten their Grammy taken away, who would have won?” It was, to be honest, quite an honor and very exciting to be up for Best New Artist and we did win a Grammy for best contemporary folk recording. That’s the only Grammy we’ve ever actually won, and we’ve been nominated for a handful. The Grammy we won was the same year as the Milli Vanilli scandal, so it’s kind of fun to just look back at an interesting part of our history. You started performing together three decades ago. In that time, what would you consider the highlight, whether a performance or an experience, you’ve had through being able to do this? Oh, man, there are really so many. We played the Queer Rights March on Washington many, many years ago, and I can remember that very clearly: walking up the stage scaffolding and my legs were shaking because we were so nervous. That was incredible, but we’ve also had moments with other artists, like opening for The Grateful Dead, and playing shows with Paddy Schmidt. We work with a group we started called Honor the Earth, which does a lot of environmental justice work with indigenous communities, and I can remember so many shows we did to raise money and awareness for that group that were sort of life-altering shows for us. It’s really countless, all kinds of things, you know? Lilith Fair was up there at the top, it gave us a chance to sing and perform with all those other artists and to hear all those other artists, and to celebrate the power of women in music. It had a profound impact on me personally, and on our career as well. You know that Iowa has a women’s music festival every September? I did not know that! Yes, in fact, this year Cris Williamson and Ferron headlined at the Englert— oh, and last year it was Janis Ian. Oh, we’ve met Janis before, she’s awesome. She sang with us on a holiday record and she’s good friends with our producer. She’s wonderful. Do you have any time to do any exploring while you’re there? No, the only time we do is if we have a day off. We have shows in Illinois on the day before [Aurora] and the day after [Chicago]. So no time to explore. Oh, and this show in Iowa City we’re playing with a band called Shadowboxers. They’re a bunch of young guys, great singer/songwriters, sort of a mix of pop, retro-punk band. They open the show, and then they’ve learned a bunch of Indigo songs, so they’re our house band, and they add different musical things and some harmonies, and it’s really, really fun having them with us on the road. We’ve done some touring with them, but not for that long, so that’s a very, very fun and interesting and unique part of our trip to Iowa City, is playing with the Shadowboxers. The Indigo Girls will be performing at the Englert in Iowa City, Iowa November 4th and in Chicago, Illinois November 5th. For more information on the Indigo Girls go to IndigoGirls.com.
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The Bookworm Sez by Terri Schlichenmeyer “The Paternity Test” by Michael Lowenthal, c.2012, University of Wisconsin Press $26.95 U.S. and Canada, 288 pages A lot of the things you’ve done in your life, you’ve done just for kicks. You’ve taken dares to alleviate boredom. Taken risks on what-the-heck whims. You’ve done things legal and illegal for no other reason than that they were there, and it seemed like a good idea at the time. You did them just for kicks. But when it comes to having a family, the only kicks you want are the ones from your unborn child. In the new book “The Paternity Test” by Michael Lowenthal, getting to that
Across 1 Elton John wears them 6 Bringing up the rear 10 Suck (in) 14 Deck opening 15 Northern capital 16 Cocksure Aesop character 17 Colette’s The One 18 Minimal tide 19 Club for Sheehan 20 Start of a riddle 23 Big initials in fashion 24 Caesar’s way 25 Frank acknowledgment 29 Dry, as wine 30 A volatile guy has a short one 32 Not in the pink 33 End of the riddle 38 Drag queen’s leg scraper 39 Hip-hopís Dr. 40 Bridge triumph 41 Start of the answer 46 John of Barrie’s land 47 TV trophy 48 Stooge with a bowl cut 49 Bewitched mother 51 Canning container 52 Barnyard male 55 End of the answer 59 It may come before 69 62 Early AIDS play 63 Tend with tenderness 64 Minor in astronomy 65 Russian singing duo 66 Home run, or home fries source
point, for two prospective fathers, almost gives their relationship the boot. Patrick Faunce met Stuart Nadler at a charity event. Stu, an airline pilot, once had boyfriends near every major airport. It was something that Pat learned not to question so he just stayed at home, working and worrying, never knowing if he was good enough, always overthinking. Pat had been in love with both boys and girls before, but he was afraid of losing Stu. So when the Faunce family vacation house on Cape Cod fell into Pat’s ownership, he convinced Stu to move. It was a perfect place for a start-over, which made things better but
still bumpy. This time, though, it wasn’t all Stu’s fault: Patrick realized that he wanted a baby. His childhood had been marked by a largely-absent father and hints of infidelity from his mother, and Pat wanted a family like the one he never had. He knew about surrogacy and he researched more, which is how he and Stu ended up meeting Debora and Danny Neuman. Debora was sassy and beautiful, a Brazilian Jew with a charming grasp on the English language. Danny was reticent but friendly, if not a little nervous. They had an adorable 4-year-old daughter, they said their family was complete, and they only wanted to be able to
Q-PUZZLE: Tops and Bottoms Down Under
67 Muff diving area 68 Barely gets, with “out” 69 Gives a pink slip to Down 1 Like a peacock 2 Wooded ways 3 Kind of alcohol
4 Reproduced without sex, for short 5 Respond to the cold 6 Ars _, vita brevis 7 In midvoyage, maybe 8 More than tickle 9 Active seaman’s pole?
help someone else have a family. Agreements were made. Papers were signed. But when month after month passed with no pregnancy, Patrick and Stu began to unravel. Debora and Danny’s relationship began to fray, too, so Debora started to rely on Pat’s friendship. Could a baby—maybe?—put everything back the way it was before? You have to love a story that makes you a little scared to move on to the next chapter because you’ve come to care about the characters so much. Fortunately, that’s what will happen when you read “The Paternity Test.” Told from the perspective of one almostparent, this novel is rich with angst and eagerness, laced with past-inflicted pain, and yet… still hopeful. Author Michael Lowenthal perfectly depicts the emotions of trying to start a family. Beginning slow in his storytelling, he just as slowly builds to an almost-see-itcoming, tense-but-can’t-look-away ending that will leave readers feeling strangely, breathlessly pensive. You can expect a lot from this story of expectations met and dashed, and I don’t think you’ll be disappointed because it’s one of those novels that will stick in your mind. If you miss “The Paternity Test,” in fact, you’ll kick yourself.
10 Sometime label of Dusty Springfield 11 Galley slave’s tool 12 Solidly behind 13 Shakespeare’s dusk 21 Rolled cubes 22 “If _ I Would Leave You” 26 Author Cather 27 Box to Vidal 28 Andean pack animal 29 Order to Rex 30 Like a bear 31 Like hand-me-downs 33 French composer Erik 34 Hawke of Hamlet 35 Current fashion 36 Second fruit eater 37 R.E.M.’s “It’s the End of the World _ Know It” 42 Gay cable network 43 Come out 44 Colorful computer 45 City of Xtra 50 Winfrey of The Color Purple 51 Superstar title character 52 Wrongful acts, in law 53 First appearance 54 Austin Powers portrayer Mike 56 Writer Dinesen 57 “Marriage ___” (civil union, derogatorily) 58 Party after a Hawaiian wedding, perhaps 59 Long sandwich, for short 60 Broadway bio 61 Sex, crudely
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Under Construction : ACCESSline’s Heartland Recurring Events List
ACCESSline’s Recurring Events List is and has been provided by ACCESSline readers. With the added communities of ACCESSline’s Heartland Newspaper, the list is need of a large overhaul. We need readers to continue to help and update the list. Please submit recurring ManagingEditor@ACCESSlineIowa.com.
Consider these Bisschopswijn Thanksgiving traditions
Thanksgiving is about tradition. We keep the same family recipes going from year to year—and mainly for the reason that they’re delicious! But Thanksgiving traditions have to start somewhere, and mixing it up a little each year can sometimes lead to repeat requests the next year. Tada! A new tradition has started! Following are some recipes from Bisschopswijn (bisschopswijn.com) that we think might have a chance at doing just that.
(OK, if the new tradition doesn’t stick for Thanksgiving, there’s always Christmas!) • ½ gallon orchard fresh apple cider • 1 tablespoon Bisschopswijn - Mulled Wine & Cider Spices • 1 teaspoon salt Fresh apple cider is a must for this recipe. Place the Bisschopswijn spices in muslin steeping bag or large tea ball. In a sauce pan heat the apple cider, spices and salt until a low boil. Remove the spice bag after boiling a few minutes. Continue to boil to reduce the cider until reduced by three quarters. Baste ham or ham balls with the glaze.
Cranberry Punch (A family friendly punch, made with the non-alcoholic Bisschopswijn “Market” recipe.) • One Bisschopswijn Market Recipe, chilled • Sierra Mist Cranberry Splash soda Mix the Bisschopswijn Market Recipe with an equal amount of the soda over ice.
Bisschopswijn Market Recipe • 64oz cranberry juice • 64oz apple cider • 1/3 cup brown sugar • 1 oz. (generous 1/4 cup) Bisschopswijn – Mulled Wine and Cider Spices Combine the cranberry juice and apple cider in a large crock pot or large sauce pan. Add the brown sugar and stir until it is dissolved. Place Bisschopswijn spices in the muslin bag provided. Close the bag by pulling the strings and tying them into a bow. Place the bag of spices into the juice mixture. Cover the crock pot or sauce pan and heat the mixture until hot over a medium setting on your crock pot or medium heat on your stove top. Do not boil. Reduce the temperature to low and simmer for 15-30 minutes. Stir occasionally to make sure the brown sugar has dissolved completely. Taste the Bisschopswijn occasionally. Remove the spice bag when the desired amount of “spice” is reached. Ladle the hot Bisschopswijn into mugs and serve with a Cinnamon Stir Stick.
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Earning Respect: A Drag Queen’s Career Interview by Angela Geno-Stumme but you still can’t beat “Old School Drag”! Aretha Franklin, Tina Turner, Whitney Houston, Celine Dion…I love it all. What does a Vanessa Taylor performance involve? What types of music, costumes, etc? Depending on where I’m performing, it varies, but one thing you will always get from a Vanessa Taylor performance is a “Look” from head to toe. I will always have Lashes on, nails on, shoes that match my costume. I’m put together. I hope that doesn’t sound divaish! You hold the title of Miss Gay Iowa USofA 2005, how did that affect you? It affected me in many different ways, but the biggest way it affected me was it made me a better entertainer and pushed me to be professional at all times. When you are Miss Iowa people are always watching every move you make, so it’s very important to always be on your game. Not only while you’re on stage, but off stage as well. The way you carry yourself and how you treat others, people notice that, so as Miss Iowa I was always aware of how I was perceived by others, which is something every Miss Iowa should be aware of as well. What causes are important to you and how do you give back to the community? I am proud to say that I have volunteered my services to various Aids charities over the years and will continue to do so. I have done shows and helped raise money for the following Charities: Aids Project of Central Iowa, MICA (Mid Iowa Community Action) in Ames, Toys for Tots, and Capital City Pride. You are the Owner/Promoter of Iowa USofA Pageantry, how have you changed/improved the Pageant since your ownership? There are many improvements. One big one is making sure that everyone involved feels appreciated…Contestants, Formers, Prelim Promoters, and the audience. If people feel appreciated, they will continue to be a part of the event. I have also made sure that there are more National level entertainers that have come
to Iowa to be a part of the big weekend. This year (December 2nd) we have not only the reigning Miss Gay USofA, we have the reigning Miss Gay USofA Classic, who happens to be a former Miss Gay USofA as well. We have a former Mr Gay USofA, and a former Miss Gay USofA @ Large. We will have four National title holders that weekend and I’m so thrilled that I get the opportunity to bring that level of entertainment to Iowa. When is your next BIG performance? What hints can you give us about what we can expect to see? My next big performance is coming up in November. I am finally competing for a pageant after taking a few years off. Without giving too much away…this is the most prepared I have ever been and have the best package I have ever had, so I’m really excited for this! Who has helped you in your life and who would you like to thank? Oh gosh, there are so many people to thank. I am going to narrow it down to three. The first is Tony, the love of my life. Without his support over the last 12 years, there is no way that I could have accomplished the things I have. When my electric bill money went to buy rhinestones, or I didn’t pay the cable bill so I could buy new wigs, he was there to take care of it and has been my biggest fan cheering me on at every pageant and show. Second… Clarissa Cavalier, who taught me how to be, not only an entertainer, but a human being as well. She taught me how to sew… and I can’t express how important that skill has been to me in my drag career! Clarissa is one of the kindest souls that I have had the privilege of knowing. I miss her dearly. Third…Dena Cass, if there is one thing she has taught me it is to not allow anyone to walk all over me and treat me with anything but respect. It’s so important in this business to stand up for what you believe to be right and always speak with honesty. It may not always win the Most Popular award, but I WILL earn respect. Vanessa Taylor can be found on Facebook and more information on Miss Gay Iowa USofA can be found at MissGayIowa.com.
Let’s be honest, drag queens can be a little intimidating, especially to a young boy from a small farm town.
Vanessa Taylor. Courtesy of Vanessa Taylor. Vanessa Taylor discusses her career from seeing her first Drag Queen Show at The Garden, to competing for Miss Gay Iowa USofA 2005, and discussing the improvements she has made as owner/ promoter of Iowa USofA Pageantry. How did you get your start in performing? When I was 21 I went to The Garden and saw a show. At first I was scared…I had never seen anything like it and let’s be honest, drag queens can be a little intimidating, especially to a young boy from a small farm town. Even though I was scared, I was so mesmerized by the entertainers. The makeup, the hair, the nails…It was all so intriguing, so after seeing a few shows, I decided I wanted to take a shot at it. My boyfriend at the time was a hair dresser, so I asked him to do my makeup and hair and after that day, it was on! What has been your inspiration? Who has been your mentor or mentors? My inspiration has been and still is—wanting to be the best I can be on stage and off. Not only is it important to me to be liked for what I do on stage, but for the things I do offstage as well. Being a person in the spotlight, I think it is your
duty to give back to the community and treat people the same way that you expect them to treat you. I’m lucky, that I figured that out…others are still struggling with that. Where have you performed? And what performances were special for you? I have been so lucky to be able to perform all over the Midwest; Iowa, Illinois, Missouri, and Nebraska. I have also performed in Dallas, TX when I competed for Miss Gay USofA. I have been blessed to be able to work with the best of the best national title holders from all across the country. I have had some great experiences, one being when I won Miss Iowa, but the most special is when I competed for Miss Gay Iowa USofA @ Large a few years ago, and got a standing ovation from not only the crowd, but the judges as well, during talent competition. I performed Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds by Natalie Cole and brought some of the crowd to tears. That was my most special moment in my drag career. What is/are your favorite song(s)/ numbers to perform? Drag has changed a lot over the years,
My inspiration has been and still is—wanting to be the best I can be on stage and off.
Vanessa Taylor. Courtesy of Vanessa Taylor.
Section 3: Community
FFBC: Several Words to the Wise by Bruce Carr Our guest speaker on Friday morning, October 5, was Carol Greta, a lawyer who is recently retired from twelve years of service as legal counsel to the Iowa Department of Education, and a long-time friend of our community. Taking as her text Karl Menninger’s pointed observation that “what is done to children, they will do to society,” Greta spoke to us on “Why Student Free Speech Matters.” Greta’s remarks showed both her intense passion for the Constitutional guarantee of freedom of speech and her thorough knowledge of the legal ramifications of maintaining that guarantee. “It all comes down to the facts and the circumstances,” she said, noting that many local school administrations and several appellate courts have displayed extraordinary ineptitude, not to say stupidity, in dealing with those facts and circumstances. And throughout (it seemed to this reporter) she displayed a practical, good-humored, and common-sense —ok, Iowan!—attitude to the court cases she described. Beginning with the black armbands of the 1969 Tinker v. Des Moines Independent Community School District case (the very first US Supreme Court case to consider student free speech), Greta went on to
detail such free-speech issues as gangrelated tattoos, offensive T-shirts (these can be real head-scratchers, she said), and cyber-space/social media. Adjudication of these cases, she argued, must always focus upon whether or not there is a “reasonable expectation of substantial disruption” of the educational environment. Cyberbullying is, of course, an issue undreamed-of in 1969; in 2009, Carol Greta wrote a very important and characteristically apt paper on Ways to Combat Cyberbullying, which is available online at <opi.mt.gov/pdf/SafeSchools/CombatCyberbullying.pdf>. A native Iowan, Carol Greta graduated from the University of Iowa and earned her J.D. from the University of Iowa College of Law. Before joining the Iowa Department of Education, she practiced law privately in Eldora and Newton. From 1995 to 2000, she served as an alternative district associate court judge in District 5A; in 2006-07 she was president of the National Council of State Education Attorneys. A member of Plymouth Church in Des Moines, she also frequently officiates at football, volleyball, swimming, and track & field tourneys.
Greater Omaha GLBT Network Calendar
The mission of GOglbt is to advance growth and equality for its members, businesses and allies by providing educational, networking and community-building opportunities. We typically meet the first Thursday every month at a traveling location to see the community and be seen. For more information or to be included on the e-newsletter list, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. GoGLBT Meeting Council Bluffs Community Alliance Wednesday, October 3, 2012, 5:30pm (CBCA) Weekly Meeting-Iowa - 7:00pm Every Friday, 5:30 pm – 8:00 pm Council Bluffs Community Alliance CBCA also meets at Barleys, 114 W. (CBCA) Biweekly Meeting-Iowa Broadway in Council Bluffs every other Friday, October 5 & 19, 2012, 5:30pm Friday at 5:30 PM - 8:00. - 8:00pm The Wimmins Show Council Bluffs Community Alliance Every Sunday, 11:30am - 1:00pm (CBCA) promotes the city of Council The Wimmins Show online at kzum. Bluffs as a developing gay, lesbian, org, or if you live in Lincoln, on 89.1. The bisexual and transgender family commu- Wimmins Show focuses on music by, for, nity, and to assure the equality of all and about women, featuring lesbian and Council Bluffs’ residents. Please email feminist artists. Hosted by Deb Anderson email@example.com and other guest programmers. or visit their Facebook page.
Living with HIV A case management program serving those living with HIV/AIDS in north-central Iowa. LIVING WITH HIV PROUDLY SUPPORTS NATIONAL GAY MEN’S HIV/AIDS AWARENESS DAY!
Let us help you locate medical specialists, prescription coverage, and community resources. A monthly support group is also available.
226 SE 16th Street Ames, Iowa 50010 515-956-3312
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Prime Timers of Central Iowa Contrary to the stereotype—even within the LGBT community— life isn’t over when you reach the dreaded thirty year mark—or even forty or fifty, but opportunities for mature gay/bi/questioning men to socialize in Central Iowa are limited. How often have you heard an older gay man say, “I wish there were somewhere we could go to talk and hear each other?” About forty men gathered in Des Moines on September 23rd to organize a new, central Iowa chapter of Prime Timers World Wide PrimeTimersWW. org. Prime Timers World Wide (PTWW) is emerging as a leading international force in gay and bisexual communities with chapters throughout North America, Europe, and Australia. The September event featured Rob Howard, president of Prime Timers World Wide, who stated Prime Timers was established 25 years ago to offer diverse opportunities for older gay men to socialize with and support each other. Prime Timers of Central Iowa (PTCI) becomes the 79th chapter. PTWW is not a sex club, but an organization that serves to introduce men who share similar interests. Each chapter functions as an independent organization, choosing activities that reflect the interests of the membership. Strong social relationships and engag-
ing activities are essential elements of healthy aging. Although gay men may have loved to dance the night away in clubs when they were in their twenties, that happens less frequently as we grow older. Mature men focus more on friendships and relationships. PTCI will offer mature gay men opportunities to avoid living lonely and isolated lives. PTCI intends to be inclusive. Membership dues have been set at twenty dollars per year, and men who wish to “test drive” the group can attend two of their events with no obligation to join. A number of activities have been planned for the next several months. Interest has been expressed from mature gay men in Eastern Iowa (Iowa City, Cedar Rapids, Waterloo and Davenport) about starting a new chapter in their area. The members of Prime Timers would welcome another chapter and be pleased to assist in getting it started. PTCI invites members from the Eastern half of Iowa to attend some of our events to see what Prime Timers has to offer for mature gay men. Interested men can find out more about PTCI on Facebook at Prime Timers of Central Iowa or can send an inquiry to PrimeTimersIowa@gmail.com. We also receive old fashioned letters at 3032 Settlers Trail, St. Charles, IA 50240.
Strong social relationships and engaging activities are essential elements of healthy aging.
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Section 3: Community
Giving Thanks and Remembrance This November by Royal Bush, Multifaith Chaplain Transgender Day of Remembrance
November is a month filled with many special days; Election Day, Veteran’s Day, Thanksgiving, and Hanukkah begins. There is one day that I would like for all of us to stop and give thought to. In so many organizations we use the “alphabet soup” to describe short cuts of what we do. The Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender community is no different. Are we the GLBT community or the GLBTQQA… community? The list really could go on. I am speaking about the GLBT community (this is the version that was used as I grew up in the 80’s.) I think many of us take the Gay/Lesbian components for granted, being the corner stone for the equality movement. Let us now consider the Transgender component of our community. Sylvia Rae Rivera is probably one of the first transgendered Americans to be ‘the face’ (if you will) associated openly with the GLBT community. Sylvia was right in the middle of the Stonewall Riots. Brandon Teena, Alexis Arquette, Chaz
Bono, and Norm Coleman are just a few names that may be familiar, while the list of accountants, doctors, economists, writers, programmers, authors, scientist, singers, photographers, golfer, sailor, and others continue… November 20th marks the annual Transgender day of Remembrance (TDoR), a day that memorializes those who have been killed as a result of transphobia, (hatred or fear of transgender and gender non-conforming people) to bring attention to the continued violence endured by the transgender community. The TDoR was founded in 1998 by Gwendolyn Ann Smith, a transgender graphic designer, columnist and activist, to memorialize the murder of Rita Hester in Allston, Massachusetts. Rita Hester’s murder, like most anti-transgender murder cases, has yet to be solved. I ask “us” living in the United States to be mindful of the many freedoms we take for granted. In some countries, people
are being killed every minute for their gender identity, perceived gender, and sexual orientation. Even with some local, state and federal laws, transgender people living in the United States still experience violence, death threats and other acts of bullying. FBI Data indicates that since 2008, transgender, gay and lesbian people have been the target of thousands of acts of violence, including death. In the United States, only ten states and the District of Columbia have hate crime laws protecting people victimized on the basis of their gender identity. They are: Hawaii, California, Connecticut, New Mexico, Mississippi, Missouri, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, Vermont, and Washington State. In addition, the Matthew Shepard Act expanded the federal hate crime laws to include gender, gender identity, and sexual orientation. I ask that on November 20th, as we prepare to gather with our families (given and chosen) on Thanksgiving, that we stop and give thought to the many brave people in our community who are still struggling with life and for the same liberties that “we” have and take for granted. GLBT… what a beautiful “soup” we make with all of our letters, numbers, flavors, colors, shapes,
I ask “us” living in the United States to be mindful of the many freedoms we take for granted.
“While the president does not weigh in on every single ballot measure in every state, the president believes in treating everyone fairly and equally, with dignity and respect. Washington’s same-sex marriage law would treat all Washington couples equally, and that is why the president supports a vote to approve Referendum 74.” —Paul Bell, press secretary for President Barack Obama campaign in Washington state
Multifaith Chaplain Royal D. Bush serves Inclusive Life, Omaha, NE. He holds a Bachelor Degree in business administration. He studied at Andersonville Theological Seminary. He holds a current certificate of spiritual counseling with the International Institute of Faith Based Counseling. He can be reached by phone at (402) 575-7006, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org, and at inclusivelife.org. and sizes. Happy Thanksgiving. Travel safe. Have fun. Leave room for dessert. May Peace Love and Compassion be with you and from you. Source FBI hate crimes: http://www. fbi.gov/about-us/investigate/civilrights/ hate_crimes/overview. Source Matthew Shepard Act: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ Matthew_Shepard_and_James_Byrd,_Jr._ Hate_Crimes_Prevention_Act
Section 3: Community
CRPrideFest’s Halloween a Frightfully Good Time On Saturday, October 20th from 7pm to Midnight, CRPrideFest (or formerly known as “CRU”) hosted a Halloween Bash Dance and Costume Party. This night of fun was open to all! Kids and adults anticipated in the games, and contests. The costumes were outstanding! The venue was located at Gatherings (www.crgatherings.com), located at 905 Third Street SE, Cedar Rapids, IA for this event. A silent auction was held selling pies donated by Kathy’s Pies and ACCESSline, and gift certificates to various area restaurants and businesses as a fundraiser for CRPrideFest. There was no charge for this event, but a free-will donation at the door was another popular way to support CRPrideFest and its endeavors. We couldn’t have done it without the help of our local sponsors and donors like: Balloons Etc. & Costume Emporium, BBQ This!, General Mills, Quaker Oats EQUAL, Jamie’s Delights, Arby’s, Noodles & Company , PFLAG, and ACCESSline. For more information go to CRPrideFest.com
PITCH Calendar 2012
Positive Iowans Taking Charge (PITCH) is a volunteer-run non-profit organization, founded in 2007, their goal is to provide social networking and support to Iowans living with, or affected by, HIV/AIDS. Their mission is to create an atmosphere where HIV+ people can unite, advocate, and assist other HIV+ people for better health and wellness. Waterloo PITCH Support Groups meet at 4th floor in the KWWL Building, 500 E. 4th Street Ste. #414, Waterloo. More information can be found at pitchiowa.org
8 Waterloo Support Group for Iowans infected
1 World AIDS Day 6 Waterloo Support Group for Iowans infected 20 Waterloo Support Group open to those infected and affected
PITCH Conference Call Support Group Meeting
“Scariest Costume of the night” Photo courtesy of Kelly S. Gassman.
Positive Iowans Taking Charge will be having a Conference Call Support Group meeting, November 28th at 7 PM. This Support Group Meeting is open to those outside of Iowa. The meeting is to provide emotional, social, and educational opportunities for Iowans across the state. The Agenda is as follows: welcome and introduction from
7-7:30 PM, topic discussion from 7:30-8 PM, non-topic time for everyone to share how they are doing from 8-8:30 PM. Times are adjusted depending on the needs of the people on the call. The number to call is 949-812-4500 and the Pin number is 684713 that everyone will use the same code. For more information go to pitchiowa.org or find them on facebook.
average worker. They seek equality for women, racial minorities, and gays, and favor a sensible immigration policy. They believe that access to affordable healthcare should be a basic right for all Americans. Critics of the Democratic Party usually question whether we can afford to help people as much as they want, or whether government assistance will actually accomplish its stated goals. While those are potentially valid criticisms, the basic moral motivation for the Democrats is compassion. On the other hand, Republicans have increasingly become the party of selfishness, violence, inequality, and greed. While there was a time when the Republicans proposed alternative solutions to help the disadvantaged, those days have passed. In Iowa, the state Republicans voted last year to cut drastically emergency shelters for youth who try to escape difficult domestic situations. Iowa had the money. It was not about money, but principle, and the principle was that society had no responsibility for abused or endangered youth. Republican healthcare proposals would leave millions without coverage. Proposed Medicaid cuts would wreck programs for the elderly and the disabled. The renewal of the Farm Bill is being blocked by House Republicans who want to cut food assistance, which is primarily directed towards families and children. They seek the elimination of basic environmental protections and want to end the progressive income tax structure that has been in place ever since we established the income tax in the early 20th century. As always, the burden will fall on the poor. Even the conservative columnist David Brooks has complained about the increasing selfishness within his own party. This election is about morality as much as anything else. If the Republicans get elected, and if they successfully enact their domestic agenda, the poor, the elderly, and
FFBC member Jonathan Page is senior pastor of the Ames United Church of Christ, 217 6th Street, Ames, Iowa. Sunday service at 10:45. He can be reached at jon@Amesucc.org. youth in our communities will be devastated. Churches and non-profits will not be able to pick up the slack. That is reality. Women’s rights will be curtailed. The hard-fought victories of the gay community and our allies will be put in jeopardy as the Supreme Court becomes even more conservative. If the Democrats get elected, we will continue to face big problems. At least as those problems are addressed, the needs of everyone in our communities will be factors in the discussion. The sad part for me personally is that on November 6 most of my family will vote Republican. Pleas to support my right to marry, adopt children, have protection against discrimination, and to enjoy other rights denied to gays fall on deaf ears. I can only hope that my Republican friends and family speak out for compassion with their party comrades so that someday the GOP might rediscover its moral compass. Lord knows, we as a country need it.
From the Pastor’s Pen by Rev. Jonathan Page The Election as a Moral Compass
In 2004 I was still struggling with what it meant to be gay. As with many gays I suffered bouts of severe depression and self-loathing. My father disapproved of my sexual orientation, and I felt paralyzing anxiety when I ventured into a gay bar. In the midst of this, I had to watch the Republican Party use homophobia to get an unpopular president reelected. State after state passed constitutional amendments to ban gay marriage, often with huge popular margins. Evangelical Christians mobilized in droves to get out the vote to oppose the gay menace. It was all part of an intentional strategy devised by Karl Rove and his talented assistant Ken Mehlman, a strategy that echoed Nixon’s “Southern Strategy” in 1968. Hatred sells. The strategy worked. In 2010 when Ken Mehlman came out of the closet, he joined a long list of homophobes who zealously persecuted their own. Upon
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hearing that Mehlman was gay, I seethed with anger. He could hang out with all the gays in Washington and be embraced by the gay community there. I never heard any apology for the damage he caused. I remember remarking to a friend, “I will forgive Ken Mehlman after he goes door to door and begs forgiveness from all of the families of the kids who committed suicide due to his campaign of fear and hatred.” Perhaps that is not very Christian of me. For the record, Mehlman finally apologized earlier this year for his role in the 2004 campaign. I was raised in a thoroughly Republican household and hesitantly voted for Al Gore in 2000. Yet, in 2004 I became a Democrat. In addition to the obvious personal reasons for being a Democrat, there were larger moral issues at stake. The worst the Democrats can be accused of is wanting to help people too much. They support programs for the poor, disabled, elderly, and children. They back teachers and unions that work to improve wages and conditions for the
ACCESSline Page 28 DIRECTORY NOTICE
The ACCESSline community directory is updated each issue. LISTINGS ARE FREE but are limited by space. Free online listings are available at www.ACCESSlineAMERICA.com. Information about new listings must contain a phone number for publication and a contact (e-mail address, land address, or website) for our records. For more information or to provide corrections, please contact Editor@ACCESSlineAMERICA.com or call (712) 560-1807.
The ACCESSline is expanding our resource directory to include heartland resources outside of Iowa. Please bear with us as we continue improving our resource directory. NATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS
Breur Media Corporation : Website Consultation, Design, Programming, and Hosting. HIV and STD Testing Sites near You, including places where you can get tested for free: hivtest.org/ Crisis or Suicide National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: suicidepreventionlifeline.org Information on Mental Health National Alliance on Mental Illness: nami.org Counseling, Information and Resources about Sexual Orientation GLBT National Help Center: glnh.org or 1-888-843-4564 Information on Mental Health for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender nami.org Information on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Health, cdc.gov Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund 1133 15th Street NW, Suite 350, Washington, DC 20005, victoryfund.org 202-VICTORY [842-8679] Human Rights Campaign, National political organization, lobbies congress for lesbian & gay issues, political training state and local, hrc.org, 1-800-777HRCF Lambda Legal Defense & Education Fund I I E. Adams, Suite 1008, Chicago, IL 60603 lambdalegal.org, 312-663-4413 National Gay & Lesbian Task Force (NGLTF) ngltf.org - taskforce.org 1325 Massachusetts Ave NW, Ste 600, Washington, DC, 20005 National Organization for Women (NOW) 733 15th ST NW, 2nd Floor Washington, DC 20005, now.org 202-628-8669 PFLAG National Offices 1133 15th Street NW, Suite 350, Washington, DC 20005, email@example.com - pflag.org, 202467-8180 The Trevor Lifeline |Crisis and suicide prevention lifeline for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning youth. (866) 4-U-TREVOR - (866) 488-7386 Open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. All calls are toll-free and confidential - thetrevorproject.org/
Equality Iowa P.O. Box 18, Indianola, IA 50125, equalityiowa.org - 515-537-3126 Faithful Voices Interfaith Alliance of Iowa’s marriage equality project. faithfulvoices.org Imperial Court of Iowa Non-profit fundraising & social, statewide organization with members from across the State of Iowa. PO Box 1491, Des Moines, IA 50306-1491 imperialcourtofiowa.org Iowa Chapter of the National Organization for Women (NOW) Janis Bowden, President, IA NOW firstname.lastname@example.org PO Box 41114, Des Moines, IA 503111 Iowa Gay Rodeo Association (IAGRA) 921 Diagonal Rd, Malcom, IA 50157 email@example.com 641-990-1411
Section 3: Community Iowa PFLAG (Parents, Families & Friends of Lesbians and Gay) State Council, PO Box 18, Indianola, IA 50125 http://community.pflag.org/Page. aspx?pid=194&srcid=-2 515-537-3126 or 641-583-2024 Iowa Pride Network 777 Third Street, Suite 312, Des Moines, Iowa 50309 - Iowapridenetwork.org, Executive Director: 515-471-8062, Outreach Coordinator: 515-471-8063 LGBT Youth in Iowa Schools Task Force PO Box 1997, Des Moines, 50306 515-243-1221 One Iowa 500 East Locust St, Ste 300, Des Moines, IA 50309 - 515-288-4019 - OneIowa.org The Quire Eastern Iowa’s GLBT chorus, thequire.org
NEBRASKA ORGANIZATIONS (LIST in progress)
Citizens For Equal Protection-402-398-3027 1105 Howard St, Suite #2, Omaha, NE 68102. cfep-ne.org - firstname.lastname@example.org The Imperial Court of Nebraska Meets the third Monday of Every month at the Rainbow Outreach Resource Center at 17th and Leavenworth in Omaha, NE. Meetings start at 6pm and are open to the public. PO Box 3772, Omaha, NE 68103 Nebraska AIDS Project Omaha Office (Home Office) 250 South 77th Street Suite A Omaha, NE 68114 (402) 552-9260 - Email us: email@example.com (also serving Southwest Iowa)
First United Methodist Church 516 Kellogg Ave, Ames, IA 50010, Contemporary worship Sat 5:30; Sun 8:30 & 11am acswebnetworks.com/firstunitedmcames/ 515-232-2750 ISU LGBTA Alliance GLBT Support, Activism, Social Events, Newsletter - 515-344-4478 L East Student Office Space,2229 Lincoln Way, Ames, IA 50014-7163, alliance@iastate. edu - alliance.stuorg.iastate.edu Living with HIV Program 226 SE 16th Street, Ames, IA 50010, Ask for Janelle (Coordinator), 515-956-3312 ext 106 or 800-890-8230 Lord of Life Lutheran - 515-233-2350 2126 Gable Lane, Ames 50014, Services Sundays at 9:00a.m.; Wed. 7:00pm. PFLAG Ames Youth and Shelter Services Offices, 2328 Bristol Drive, Ames, IA 5001, 2nd Tuesday, 7pm - pflagames.org 515-291-3607 Romantics Pleasure Palace 117 Kellogg Street, Ames, IA 50010-3315 romantixonline.com 515-232-7717 United Church of Christ-Congregational 6th & Kellogg, Ames, 50010, Sunday Continental Breakfast, 9:00am; Sunday School, 9:30am; Worship 10:45am. uccames@ midiowa.net 515-232-9323 Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Ames 1015 Hyland Ave. Services: 9:30 am and 11:30 am, Sunday, uufames.org uufa@aol. com 515-292-5960 Unity Church of Ames - unityofames.com 226 9th St, Ames, IA 50010-6210, Sunday service and Sunday school 10:30am. Wednesday mediation 6:30pm Daily dial-a-blessing 515-233-1613
Arnolds Park, Okoboji, Spencer, Spirit Lake, Iowa
The Royal Wedding Chapel 504 Church Street, Royal, IA 51357 712-933-2223 TheRoyalWeddingChapel.com Wilson Resource Center An Iowa Great Lakes area gay-owned, nonprofit community based organization. PO Box 486, 597 W. Okoboji Rd., Arnolds Park IA 51331-0486 - 712-332-5043 F.JosephWilson@aol.com. wilsonresource.org
Arrowhead Motel - arrowheadia.com 2520 Mount Pleasant St, Burlington, IA 52601-2118 - 319-752-6353 Faith Lutheran Church E L C A 3109 Sunnyside Ave, Burlington, IA 52601 HIV/AIDS Screening @ Des Moines County Health Department in Burlington, 522 N 3rd By appointment between 8:00am to 4:30 319-753-8217 Confidential RISQUES IV (adult store) 421 Dry Creek Ave, West Burlington, IA 52601 (319) 753-5455, Sun - Wed 8am-Midnight Thurs - Sat Open 24 Hours, LoversPlayground.com
Steve’s Place 852 Washington St, Burlington, 319-7545868 Unitarian Universalist Fellowship Services start at 10:30 am, 625 N 6th St, Burlington, IA 52601-5032, (319) 753-1895 uuburlington.org
Cedar Falls - Waterloo, Iowa
Adult Cinema 315 E 4th St, Waterloo, IA 50703-4703, (319) 234-7459 Black Hawk Co. Health Department Free HIV testing (donations accepted); MW, 1:00pm to 3:00pm; Thurs, 1:00pm to 4:45pm 1407 Independence Ave. (5th fl), Waterloo 50703 319-291 -2413 Cedar AIDS Support System (CASS) Service, support groups & trained volunteers for persons with HIV/AIDS in Waterloo/CF call Elizabeth or Karla, 319-272-AIDS(2437). firstname.lastname@example.org Cedar Valley Counseling Services Promoting personal growth and development in a strengths-based environment, Joan E. Farstad, MA, Director. 319-240-4615, cvcounseling.com email@example.com. Cedar Valley Episcopal Campus Ministry. In Lutheran Center, 2616 College St, Cedar Falls, IA - 319-415-5747, mcdinoiwa@aol. com, episcopalcampus.org Community AIDS Assistance Project (CAAP) - PO Box 36, Waterloo, IA 50704 LGBTA Support Group at Hawkeye Community College, Call Carol at 319-296-4014 or firstname.lastname@example.org Iowa Legal Aid Free civil legal service available to low income persons who qualify under income/asset guidelines. 607 Sycamore, #206, Waterloo, IA 50703 1-800-772-0039 or 319-235-7008 Kings & Queens 304 W. 4th St, Waterloo, IA, 319-232-3001 Romantix Waterloo (Adult Emporium) 1507 La Porte Rd, Waterloo, IA 50702 319-234-9340, romantixonline.com Stellas Guesthouse 324 Summit Ave, Waterloo, IA Private B&B, Overnight accommodations for adults only. 319-232-2122 St. Lukes Episcopal Church - 319-277-8520 2410 Melrose Dr, Cedar Falls, IA 50613 Services: Sunday 8:00 & 10:15, Thurs 11:30 st-lukes-episcopal.org St. Timothys United Methodist Church 3220 Terrace Drive, Cedar Falls, 50613 sttims-umc.org, 319-266-0464, info@sttimsumc-org, “Welcome of all persons, including those of all sexual orientations and gender identities.” Together For Youth 233 Vold Dr, Waterloo, IA 50703, TogetherForYouth.net 319-274-6768 UNI-LGBTA Alliance-Student Organization, 244A Bartlet Hall, University of Northern Iowa, Cedar Falls 50613 - email@example.com 319-222-0003 United Church of Christ Cedar Falls 9204 University Avenue, Cedar Falls 319-366-9686 Unitarian Universalist Society of Black Hawk County - 319-266-5640 3912 Cedar Heights Dr, Cedar Falls, IA
Cedar Rapids/marion, Iowa
Adult Shop 630 66th Ave SW, 319-362-4939 Adult Shop North 5539 Crane Lane, 319-294-5360 CRPrideFest (formerly Cedar Rapids Unity) Social activities, non-profit Pride festival organization. PO Box 1643 Cedar Rapids 52406-1643 - CRPrideFest.com Christ Episcopal Church “We have a place for you.” 220 40th Street NE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52404, 319-363-2029 ChristEpiscopal.org Belle’s Basix - 319-363-3194 Open 5pm to 2am M-F, Sat & Sun 3pm-2am 3916 1st Ave NE, Cedar Rapids Club CO2, A GLBTQA Nightclub, 616 2nd Ave SE, 319-365-0225, Open 7 days a week 4PM2AM, Happy hour from 4-8 pm, club-co2.com Coe Alliance GLBTQ and straight students, staff and people from the community. Coe College, 1220 First Ave NE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52402. firstname.lastname@example.org or Erica Geers, faculty advisor at 319-8616025
Community Health Free Clinic 947 14th Avenue SE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52401 - 319-363-0416 - communityhfc.org Free Medical Services provided for the uninsured and underserved patients of Cedar Rapids, Marion and the surrounding areas in Eastern Iowa. CSPS Legion Arts Contemporary Arts Center - 319-364-1580 1103 3rd St. SE, email@example.com Diversity Focus, 222 2nd Street SE, Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401, 319-363-3707, DiversityFocus.org, Lead in the promotion of diversity, cultural awareness, and inclusion in the Corridor community. Eden United Church of Christ 351 8th Ave SW, Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52404 (319) 362-7805 Sunday School 9am - Worship 10:15am Foundation 2 Crisis Counseling 24-hour telephone crisis counseling. firstname.lastname@example.org or www.f2online.org 1540 2nd Ave. SE Cedar Rapids, IA 319-362-2174 or 800-332-4224 Linn County Public Health 501 13th NW, Free confidential HIV testing, 319-892-6000 Linn County Stonewall Democrats For more info, contact linnstonewall@ gmail. com People’s Church Unitarian Universalist A welcoming congregation. 4980 Gordon Ave NW, Cedar Rapids, IA, 11am Sunday. 319362-9827 - peoplesuu.org PFLAG CR, Linn Co and Beyond Support Group meets on the 4th Thursday at 7pm except for Nov Dec - call for details. 319-431-0673, email@example.com The Linn County Stonewall Democrats Meet 2nd Wednesdays, Blue Strawberry, 118 2nd St SE in Cedar Rapids, IA. Contact Harvey S. Ross, HRoss007@aol.com. Tri-ess, Iota Kappa Phi Chapter P.O. Box 8605, Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52408 We are a transgendered organization supporting crossdressers, their families, and friends. - ri-ess.org, 319-390-6376, georgia523@ yahoo.com - firstname.lastname@example.org Unity Center of Cedar Rapids “A center of positive, practical Christianity.” 4980 Gordon NE, Cedar Rapids unitycr.org - (319) 393-5422
18 and Beyond (aka ABC Books), 135 5th Ave South, 563-242-7687 Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Clinton 309 30th Avenue North, Clinton, IA 52732 (563) 242-4972 - uuclinton.org, Sunday services at 10:30 (year-round), Where YOUR spiritual and ethical journey is welcome! Rev. Ruby Nancy, minister
Council Bluffs, Iowa
Council Bluffs Community Alliance “…will promote the city of Council Bluffs as a developing gay, lesbian, bisexual & transgender family community, & to assure the equality of all Council Bluffs’ residents.” CouncilBluffsCommunityAlliance.org Council Bluffs NOW PO Box 3325, Omaha, NE 68103-0325 Romantix Council Bluffs (North) (Adult Emporium) 3216 1st Ave, Council Bluffs, IA 51501-3353-romantixonline.com515-955-9756 Romantix Council Bluffs (South) (Romantix After Dark) 50662 189th St, Council Bluffs, IA 51503 romantixonline.com, 712-366-1764
Decorah Human Rights Commission Contact: City Clerk, 400 Clairborne Dr, Decorah, 563-382-3651, Meetings: First Tuesdays, 5:30pm Luther College Student Congregation Contact Office for College Ministry 700 College Dr, Decorah, IA 52101, 563-3871040. Luther College PRIDE-Diversity Center, 700 College Dr, Decorah, IA 52101 Contact Charles 563-210-6570 PFLAG Northeast IA (Waukon/Decorah) Beginning May 23rd: meeting at Northeast Iowa Peace and Justice Center, 119 Winnebago Street, Decorah, IA (lower level), corner of Winnebago and Main Street, Meetings: 4th Mondays, 7pm-9pm Call Jean @ 563-535-7680 Unitarian Universalist Fellowship Meets alternating Sundays at 10:30am, Decorah Senior Center, 806 River St, Call Bill at 563-382-3458.
NOVEMBER 2012 Des Moines, Iowa
AIDS Project of Central Iowa Free HIV testing, prevention supplies, care services, food pantry, information. 711 E. 2nd, Des Moines, IA 50309, 515-284-0245 Blazing Saddle 416 E 5th St, Des Moines, IA theblazingsaddle.com - 515-246-1299 Buddies Corral 418 E 5th St, Des Moines, IA - 515-244-7140 Church of the Holy Spirit-MCC, Pastor Pat Esperanza - Sunday service 10:30am at the 1st Christian Church 2500 University, Des Moines, chsmccdmia@ aol.com 515-287-9787 Des Moines Diversity Chorus [A gay-friendly mixed chorus] Rehearsals on Mondays at 7 p.m. at Westminster Presbyterian Church, Beaver Ave. at Franklin St., Des Moines. All are welcome, no auditions. PO Box 65312, West Des Moines, IA 50265, Julie Murphy, Artistic Director email@example.com, 515-255-3576, desmoinesdiversitychorus.org Des Moines Gay Men’s Chorus 515-953-1540, 4126 Ingersoll Ave, Des Moines - firstname.lastname@example.org Des Moines Pride Center @ One Iowa (temporary location) 419 SW, 8th St., Des Moines, IA 50309 Family Practice Center - 515-953-7560 Safe, supportive LGBT health care. 200 Army Post Road, Ste 26, ppgi.org First Friday Breakfast Club Educational breakfast club for gay/bisexual men. Meets first Friday of each month. Contact Jonathan Wilson for meeting topic and place. 515-288-2500 email@example.com ffbciowa.org First Unitarian Church 1800 Bell Avenue, Services Sundays at 9:30 & 11am - 515-244-8603, ucdsm.org Franklin Family Practice Dr. Joe Freund, MD 4908 Franklin Ave., Des Moines, IA 50310 515-280-4930, firstname.lastname@example.org, UCSOnline.org/FranklinFamilyPractice The Gallery (adult store) 1000 Cherry St, Des Moines, IA 50309-4227 - (515) 244-2916 Open 24 Hrs, LoversPlayground.com The Garden 112 SE 4th Des Moines, IA, 515-243-3965 Wed-Sun. 8pm-2am grdn.com Gay & Lesbian AA & AI-Anonymous Mon 7pm; Tue-Thu 6pm; Sat. 5:30pm, at Drake Ministries in Ed. Bldg. 28th & University Gay and Lesbian Issues Committee 4211 Grand Avenue, Level-3, Des Moines, IA 50312 - 515-277-1117 Lavender Victory Fund Financial assistance for women in need for medical emergencies. email@example.com Le Boi Bar 508 Indianola Rd, Des Moines, IA Liberty Gifts 333 E. Grand Ave, Loft 105, Des Moines, IA Gay owned specialty clothing, jewelry, home decor. 515-508-0825 MINX Show Palace - 515-266-2744 1510 NE Broadway, Des Moines, IA 50313 North Star Gay Rodeo Association of IGRA, Iowa Division of North Star, NSGRA@ NSGRA.org or 612-82-RODEO Primary Health Care Inc., David Yurdin, 2353 SE 14th St., Des Moines, 503020, Works with GLBT ages 16 to geriatric, 25 years of experience. 515-248-1427 Rainbow Union, Drake University firstname.lastname@example.org PFLAG Des Moines - 515-243-0313 1300 Locust , Des Moines, IA 50312 Plymouth Congregational UCC Church and the Plymouth GLBT Community 4126 Ingersoll Ave. 515-255-3149 Services at 9am & I lam Sunday. PlymouthGLBT.com Polk County Health Department Free STD, HIV, and Hepatitis B & C testing. HIV. Rapid testing also offered. 1907 Carpenter, Des Moines, IA, 515-286-3798. Pride Alliance, AIB College of Business Gay and straight students celebrating diversity. Contact: Mike Smith, Advisor, PrideAlliance@aib.edu - aib.edu/pride Pride Bowling League for GLBT & Supporters - Every Wednesday, 7 PM, Air Lanes Bowling Center 4200 Fleur Drive, Des Moines, IA 50321-2389. Email pridebowlingleague@ gmail.com or 515-447-2977. Raccoon River Resort Accommodations for men, women, or mixed in campgrounds, lodge, Teepees or Treehouses. Reservations: 515-996-2829 or 515-279-7312
TTDIRECTORY cont’d page 29
NOVEMBER 2012 SScontinued from page 28
Ritual Café - ritualcafe.com On 13th between Grand and Locust. Gay owned, great music, awesome food & coffee. 515-288-4872 email@example.com Romantix North Des Moines Iowa (Bachelor’s Library) 2020 E Euclid Ave, Des Moines, IA 50317, romantixonline.com 515266-7992 Spouses of Lesbians & Gays Support group for spouses of gays and lesbians. 515-277-7754 St. John’s Lutheran Church 600 6th Ave “A Church for All People.” Services Sat 5pm, Sun 7:45, 8:45 & 11am. See web page for other services. 515-243-7691 - StJohnsDSM.org TransformationsIOWA Monthly meetings for the female to male, male to female, transgender community, cross dressers, gender queer, questioning, and their significant others. For location and info, email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 515-979-6959 Trinity United Methodist Church 1548 Eighth Street - 515-288-4056 Services Sundays 10am, trinityumcdm.org Urbandale UCC - An open & affirming congregation. 3530 70th St., Urbandale, IA 50322, 515-276-0625, urbucc.org Walnut Hills UMC Join us at 8:30 or 10:45am for Sunday worship. Sunday classes & group studies at 9:30am. 515-270-9226, 12321 Hickman Rd, Urbandale, IA 50323, whumc.org Westminster Presbyterian Church 4114 Allison Ave - WestPres.org Sunday services 8:45 and 11am. Of note is their GAY-LESBIAN-STRAIGHT AFFIRMATION GROUP, GLSA 515-274-1534 Women’s Culture Collective (WCC) A lesbian social group. Des Moines, IA iowawcc.org Word of God Ministries, Sunday service: 3:00pm, at 3120 E 24th Street, Des Moines, Iowa 50317, Gay, lesbian & straight affirmation 515-707-5947. Zanzibar’s Coffee Adventure Open daily. Gay-friendly, 515-244-7694 2723 Ingersoll, Des Moines, IA
Adult Warehouse - 563-588-9184 975 Jackson St, Dubuque, IA Dubuque Friends Worship Group (Quakers) Join us at an unprogrammed worship service on Sunday at 10am. Welcoming and Affirming, 563-582-9388 St. Mark’s Community Center, 1201 White Street, Dubuque, Iowa 52001 PFLAG Dubuque/Tri-State Carnegie Stout Library, 3rd Floor Conference Room, 360 W. 11th St. 3rd Tuesday, 7pm 563-581-4606 Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Dubuque - “The uncommon denomination.” general services at 10am. 1699 Iowa St, Dubuque, IA uuf-dbq.org 563-583-9910
Bethany Church (ELCA) - 563-245-1856 307 3rd St NE, Elkader IA 52043 Pastor Jim Klosterboer. Inclusive. Welcoming. A “Reconciling in Christ” congregation of LC/ NA. alpinecom.net/~bethanychurch email@example.com, Schera’s Restaurant & Bar 107 S Main St, Elkader, IA 52043, Scheras.com, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Fine dining featuring Algerian & American Cuisine. 563-245-1992
Fort Dodge, Iowa
Romantix Fort Dodge (Mini Cinema) Sun-Thu 10am-12am, Fri & Sat 10am-2am 15 N. 5th St, Fort Dodge, IA 50501-3801 RomantixOnline.com - 515-955-9756
Broadviewwildflowerseed.com, Broad View Wildflower Seed, 428 Hamilton Ave., Grinnell, Iowa 50112, Manager/Owner: John C., email@example.com Saints Ephrem & Macrina Sunday services at 10am. (Affiliated with the Orthodox-Catholic Church of America.) Divine Liturgy is served Sundays during the College academic year 1:30 p.m., Herrick Chapel, Grinnell College Campus, 1226 Broad Street, Grinnell, IA, 641-236-0936
Section 3: Community Stonewall Resource Center Open 4:30pm to 11:30pm, Sun through Thurs and by Appointment., Grinnell College, 1210 Park Street PO Box B-1, Grinnell, IA, 50112, srcenter@ grinnell.edu 641-269-3327 United Church of Christ-Congregational, ‘An open and affirming church.’ 902 Broad St, 641-236-3111
Crossroads United Church of Christ (UCC) An Open & affirming congregation. Services: Sunday 10:30am, Summer worship: June, July, Aug, @ 9:30 am, worshiping in the Lounge at Smith Chapel, Simpson College, corner of Buxton and Clinton. Mailing address: P.O. Box 811, Indianola, IA 50125 515-961-9370. crossroadsucc.org
Iowa City, iowa
AA (GLBT) 319-338-9111 Meetings Sundays 5 - 6pm at First Baptist Church, 500 North Clinton Street. For more info, call IC Intergroup Answering Service, Congregational Church UCC An Open and Affirming Congregation, Sunday Worship 10:15 a.m. 30 N Clinton St (across from Ul Pentacrest) 319-337-4301 - uiccic.org Counseling Clinic 319-354-6238 Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender sensitive and supportive counseling for individuals, couples, families and groups. Sliding Fee. 505 E Washington St., Iowa City, IA 52240 Counseling and Health Center Client-centered therapy. Les-Bi-Gay-Trans always welcome. 616 Bloomington St, Iowa City, IA - 319-337-1679 Crisis Center 319-351-0140 1121 Gilbert Ct, Iowa City, 52240 Emma Goldman Clinic 227 N. Dubuque St, Iowa City, IA 52245 319-337-2111or 1-800-848-7684. Faith United Church of Christ An open and affirming congregation. 1609 Deforest Street, Iowa City, 52240 Sunday Worship 9:30 AM 319-338-5238 firstname.lastname@example.org, faithucciowacity.org GLBTAU-U of lA Student support system and resource center, info, activism, events, and other community involvements. 203 IMU, University of IA, Iowa City, IA 522421317 - 319-335-3251 (voice mail) email@example.com Hope United Methodist Church Worship Service at 9:30am. 2929 E. Court St., Iowa City, IA - Contact Rev. Sherry Lohman. 319-338-9865 Human Rights Commission (City of Iowa City Human Rights Commission) 319-356-5022; 391-356-5015; 319-356-5014 Fax 319-887-6213 firstname.lastname@example.org ICARE (Iowa Center for AIDS Resources & Education) Practical & emotional support, youth programs, information, referrals and support groups. 319-338-2135 3211 E 1st Iowa City, IA 52240-4703 Iowa City Free Medical Clinic Free & strictly confidential HIV Testing. 2440 Towncrest Dr Iowa City, Call for appointment 319-337-4459 Iowa City NOW PO Box 2944, Iowa City, IA 52244 Iowa Women’s Music Festival P.O. Box 3411, Iowa City, IA 52244 319-335-1486 Men Supporting Men 319-356-6038, Ext 2 HIV prevention program. Discussion Groups, Educational Series, Safer Sex Workshops, Book Club. Andy Weigel, email: aweigel@ co.johnson.ia.us New Song Episcopal Church 912 20th Ave, Coralville, IA. Sunday services at 10am. Rev. Elizabeth Coulter, Pastor. Rev. John Harper, Associate. 319-351-3577 Pride Committee WRAC, 130 N Madison, Iowa City, IA 52242 Bridget Malone - 319-338-0512 Charles Howes - 319-335-1486 Romantix Iowa City - 319-351-9444 (Pleasure Palace I) 315 Kirkwood Ave, Iowa City, IA 52240-4722 - romantixonline.com Studio 13 13 S. Linn St. (in the Alley) Iowa City, IA Open 7pm ‘til 2am, daily 319-338-7145 U of I Lesbian, Gay & Bisexual Staff & Faculty Association, c/o WRAC, 130 N Madison, Iowa City, IA 52242, 319-335-1486 Unitarian Universalist Society of Iowa City Inclusive & free religious community nurturing intellectual & spiritual growth & fostering ethical & social responsibility. uusic.org 10 S. Gilbert, Iowa City, IA Sunday services: 9:30am & 11:15am. 319-337-3443
United Action for Youth (UAY) A GLBTQA youth group providing support and counseling for teenagers and young adults processing sexual identity issues. Meets Mondays 7-9pm at UAY 410 Iowa Ave. Iowa City, IA. 319-338-7518 or Teen Line, 319-338-0559. The Ursine Group Bear Events in the Midwest. PO Box 1143, Iowa City, IA 52244-1143 - 319-338-5810 Women’s Resource Action Center (WRAC) Leads & collaborates on projects that serve U of l and the greater community, offers social & support services, including LGBT Coming Out Group. University of Iowa, 130 N Madison, Iowa City, IA 52242 - 319-335-1486
Adult Odyssey (Adult Video Store) 907 Iowa Ave E - 641-752-6550 Domestic Violence Alternatives/ Sexual Assault Center, Inc., 132 W Main St. 24 hour Crisis Line: 641-753-3513 or (instate only) 800-779-3512
MASON CITY, iowa
Cerro Gordo County Dept. of Public Health 22 N. Georgia Ave, Ste 300 Mason City, IA 50401. Free confidential AIDS testing. 641421-9321 PFLAG North Iowa Chapter 641-583-2848, email@example.com, Carlos O’Kelly’s Mexican Cafe @ 7 p.m. Wed.
Mount Vernon, Iowa
Alliance Cornell College 810 Commons Cir # 2035 - firstname.lastname@example.org - orgs.cornellcollege.edu/alliance/
Common Ground (Central College) Support group for GLBT students and allies. Contact: Brandyn Woodard, Director of Intercultural Life email@example.com 641-628-5134
Quad Cities, iowa
AIDS Project Quad Cities Info, education & support. Davenport, IA 52804, www.apqc4life.org 319-762-LIFE Black Hawk College Unity Alliance Serving GLBT community at Black Hawk College. 6600 34th Ave, Rock Island, IL 309716-0542. Connections Nightclub 563-322-1121 822 W 2nd St, Davenport, IA 52802 DeLaCerda House 309-786-7386 Provides housing & supportive services, advocacy and referrals for people living with HIV/ AIDS. P.O. Box 4551, Rock Island, Il. 61201 Good Samaritan Free Clinic 309-797-4688 Provides free primary medical care to patients age 16-64 who are working but have no medical insurance. firstname.lastname@example.org 602 35th Ave, Moline, IL GoodSamaritanFreeClinic.org The Hole-In-The-Wall 309-289-2375 A Private Membership Men’s Club, Located 3 miles east of Galesburg, IL. just north of I-74 at Exit 51. HoleInTheWallMensClub.org Holy Spirit Catholic Faith Community Meets one Sunday per month for Mass at 6:30pm at MCC-QC, 3019 N. Harrison St, Davenport, IA Mailing: PO Box 192 East Moline, IL 61244 For more info, call 309-278-3359 Lucky Shamrock 313 20th St, Rock Island, IL - 309-788-7426 An Irish Pub open to all types. Mary’s On 2nd 563-884-8014 832 W. 2nd St. Davenport, IA MCC Quad Cities - Svcs Sun 11am, Bible study Wed 7pm 563-324-8281, 3019 N Harrison, Davenport, IA 52803 Men’s Coming Out/Being Out Group Meets 2nd & 4th Thursdays, 7pm. QCAD.OutForGood@GMail.com 309-7862580 PFLAG Quad Cities 563-285-4173 Eldridge United Methodist Church 604 S.2nd St., Eldridge 1st Monday, 6:30 pm Prism (Augustana College) 309-794-7406 Augustana Gay-Straight Alliance, Augustana Library - 639 38th St, Rock Island, IL, Contact Tom Bengston Quad Citians Affirming Diversity (QCAD) Social & support groups for lesbian, bi, and gay teens, adults, friends & families; newsletter. 309-786-2580 - Community Center located at 1608 2nd Ave, Rock Island. Quad Cities Pride Chorus (Call Don at 563324-0215) At the MCC Church in D’port, 7pm Wed. email@example.com Rainbow Gifts www.rainbowgifts.net - 309-764-0559
T.R. Video Adult books & video, 3727 Hickory Grove Rd, Davenport, IA. 563-386-7914 Unitarian Universalist Congregation of the Quad Cities, Rev Jay Wolin, Sunday Service 11am - 563-359-0816 3707 Eastern Avenue, Davenport, IA 52807 Venus News (Adult) 902 W 3rd St, Davenport, IA. 563-322-7576
Red Oak, Iowa
First Congregational United Church of Christ (open and affirming) - 712-623-2794 608 E Reed St, Red Oak, IA 51566 Rev. Elizabeth Dilley, Pastor uccwebsites.net/firstcongredoakia.html firstname.lastname@example.org
PFLAG Shenandoah 1002 South Elm Street - 712-246-2824
Sioux City, IOWA
Am. Business & Professional Guild. Gay Businessmen. Meets last Sat. of the month; ABPG, P. O. BOX 72, Sioux City, 51102 - email@example.com Grace United Methodist Church 1735 Morningside Avenue - 712-276-3452. Jones Street Station (Bar) 712-258-6922 412 Jones St., Nightly 6:00pm to 2:00am. Mayflower Congregational Church 1407 West 18th St - 712-258-8278. Morningside College Lesbian/Gay/Bisexual Alliance Contact Professor Gail Dooley, Advisor Morningside College GSA. 1501 Morningside Ave, Sioux City, IA 51106-1717 firstname.lastname@example.org - 712-274-5208 PFLAG Siouxland PO Box 1311, Sioux City, IA 51102 siouxlandPFLAG@aol.com Romantix Sioux City 712-277-8566 511 Pearl St, Sioux City, IA 51101-1217 St. Thomas Episcopal Church Service Sun 10:30am 406 12th St, Waverly, IA Rev Mary Christopher - 712-258-0141 Western Iowa Tech. GSA email@example.com for info. Zaner’s Bar - 712-277-9575 -3103 N Hwy 75, Sioux City, IA 51105. Monthly drag shows & events; hometown bar for Imperial Court of Iowa’s Western Chapter firstname.lastname@example.org
Sioux falls, south dakota
Toppers, 1213 N Cliff Ave, Sioux Falls, SD 57103, (605) 339-7686, Su-Tu 7:00pm - Close : We-Sa 3:00pm - 2:00am, sdtoppers.com Center for Equality, 406 S Second Avenue in Sioux Falls, 605-331-1153, centersforequalitysd.org
Cedar Valley Episcopal Campus Ministry. 717 W. Bremer, (St. Andrew’s Episcopal) episcoplcampus.org - 319-415-5747 Gay, Lesbian Bisexual Student Alliance Wartburg College, Waverly, IA 50677. Contact Susan Vallem - 319-352-8250 St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church 717 W. Bremer. We welcome all to worship with us on Sunday at 10:30am. Bible discussion Wed. 6:45pm 319-352-1489 Rev. Maureen Doherty, Pastor
NEBRASKA (CONTENT IN PROGRESS) HASTINGS, NEBRASKA
PFLAG Hastings - email@example.com
Club Q Lincoln 226 South 9th St, Lincoln, NE 68508 402-475-2269 Indigo Bridge Books The Creamery Building, 701 P St, Ste 102, Lincoln, NE 68508 - 402-477 7770 “Indigo Bridge Books strives to provide a solid, relevant Gender Studies section with a focus on LGBT titles. indigobridgebooks.com Nebraska AIDS Project (Lincoln Office) 1921 South 17th Street, Lincoln, NE 68502 (402) 476-7000 - nap.org OUTLinc Bringing Lincoln’s LGBT Community Together outlinc.org Panic 200 S 18th St, Lincoln, NE 68508 402-435-8764
ACCESSline Page 29 PFLAG Cornhusker Chapter PO Box 82034, Lincoln, NE 68501 Meetings 4th Tuesday, Unitarian Church of Lincoln, 6300 A St, 7-9pm pflagcornhusker.org PFLAG Helpline: 402-434-9880 - Confidential Support & Information - We’re Here For You ! Planned Parenthood of the Heartland Sexual and Reproductive Health Care, Transgender Care - (402) 441-3302 2246 O St, Lincoln, NE 68510 The Rainbow Clinic in the UNL Psychological Consultation Center “…a specialty outreach service to the GLBTQ community. Psychological services, including individual, couples & family therapy, are provided within the UNL Psychological Consultation Center by regular PCC staff…open year round; day & evening appointments available. $10 for intake & $25 for therapy sessions. Application can be made for reduced fees based on federal poverty guidelines. 325 Burnett Hall, Lincoln, NE 68588 402-472-2351 unl.edu/psypage/pcc/ Star City Pride starcitypride.org - firstname.lastname@example.org The Unitarian Church of Lincoln 6300 A Street, Lincoln, NE 68510-5097 (402) 483-2213 - unitarianlincoln.org Sunday from 10am to 11am
AIDS Interfaith Network 100 N. 62nd, Omaha, NE Call Br. Wm. Woeger, 402-558-3100 Citizens For Equal Protection-402-398-3027 1105 Howard St, Suite #2, Omaha, NE 68102. cfep-ne.org - email@example.com DC’s Saloon - (western/levi/leather) The Midwest’s hottest GLBT Country & Dance Bar! 610 S 14th St, Omaha, NE, Open everyday 2pm-1am Front Runners/Front Walkers Walking/jogging club. P.O. Box 4583, Omaha, NE 68104, 402-804-8720, frontrunners.org GLBT Rainbow Outreach Omaha Serving GLBT community in eastern Nebraska and western Iowa. Also office for Imperial court of Nebraska. 1719 Leavenworth St, Omaha, NE, rocc.org - 402-341-0330 Greater Omaha GLBT Network - goglbt.org “…to advance growth & equality for its members, businesses & allies by providing educational, networking & community-building opportunities. Meetings 1st Thursday every month locations at a traveling location to see the community and be seen. For more info or to be included on the e-newsletter list, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Heartland Gay Rodeo Association (HGRA) (Midwest Division of the International Gay Rodeo Association) PO Box 3354, Omaha, NE 68103, hgra.net - 402-203-4680, Serves Iowa and Nebraska Heartland Pride ”…to develop a high impact and relevant cultural festival & events annually that promotes equality & unity for the LGBTQ & Allies Communities of Western Iowa and Greater Nebraska. heartlandpride.org Imperial Court of Nebraska P.O. Box 3772, Omaha, NE 68103, 402-5569907 Inclusive Life “Religious and Non religious care, services and ceremonies for all!”, 105 S. 49 Street, Suite E, Omaha, NE 68132, (402) 575-7006, inclusifelife.org The Max 1417 Jackson at 15th, Omaha, NE 68102 6 bars in 1 - 402-346-4110 MCC Omaha 819 South 22nd, Omaha, NE 68103, Sun 9:30AM & 11:15 AM. Wednesday “ReCharge” Worship, Wed 7pm - 402-345-2563 PFLAG Omaha Mead Hall, First United Methodist Church, 7020 Cass St. (Omaha), 2nd Thursday, 7, 6:30 Social, 402-291-6781 River City Gender Alliance Peer support, friendship, and understanding for crossdressers, transgenderists, and transsexuals. PO Box 4083 Omaha, NE 68104, 402-291-6781, email@example.com - rcga.us River City Mixed Chorus Gay/lesbian chorus, PO Box 3267, Omaha, NE 68103, Call Stan Brown, 402-341-7464 Tri-ess Chapter, Kappa Phi Lambda Chapter, Omaha, NE 68107, Transgendered organization supporting crossdressers, their families, and friends. tri-ess.org, 402-960-9696, Judy firstname.lastname@example.org Youth Support Group for GLBT Youth 13-21, meets twice monthly. Omaha, NE - 402-291- 6781
ACCESSline Page 30 SScontinued from page 10
BLUMENFELD sending young people as states and politicians forward and pass so-called “Anti-Sharia” laws to restrict Islamic law from supposedly taking hold over the United States, and our leaders protest the establishment of Islamic centers in places like New York City and Murfreesboro, Tennessee, and politicians attempt to equate President Obama with extremists who want nothing more than to wipe out the United States as we know it? And what about people like Baptist minister
Section 3: Community Robert Jeffress and others who define Mormonism as “a cult,” and conservative commentator Ann Coulter on the CNBC show “The Big Idea,” forthrightly asserting that everyone on earth should be Christian and that Jews need to be “perfected….It is better if we were all Christians,” and the current governor of Alabama, Robert Bentley, in January 2011 announcing during his inauguration that “So anybody here today who has not accepted Jesus Christ as their savior, I’m telling you, you’re not my brother and you’re not my sister, and I want to be your brother”? In the final analysis, all of this promotes
ignorance and fear against anyone who follows the tenets of Islam, Mormonism, and Judaism, while opposing Atheists and Agnostics, or for that matter, anyone who does not adhere to traditional forms of Christianity. And what kinds of messages are we sending young people regarding how to handle conflict when the National Rifle Association (whose motto is “Guns Save Lives”) owns our politicians who allow automatic and semi-automatic gun ownership to remain virtually unrestricted, where the camping and outdoors superstore, Cabela’s, handed out envelopes to the first 800 people over the age of 18 who lined up in front of its stores for a chance to win a Browning A-Bolt Medallion .300 WSM rifle with a Cabela’s 50th anniversary gun case worth $875, where Nation’s Truck Sales in Sanford, Florida last year offered each customer a brand spanking new assault rifle with the purchase of a truck, and where you can be the first on your block to kill long after you have died? For the measly sum of only $1250, the company, Holy Smoke Bullet Urns of Stockton, Alabama, provides the “service” to your loved ones who can have you cremated with a pound of your ashes stuffed inside genuine bullets, resurrecting you as live ammunition? And what about the rising tide of gun clubs that offer its members the option of posing for holiday cards where youth and parents choose between grenade launchers, assault rifles, and AK-47s for display while sitting upon Santa’s lap? And what kinds of messages are we sending young people as state after state
NOVEMBER 2012 and politician after politician attempt to pass punitive, dehumanizing, and, yes, racist anti-immigration measures, and where some states as well as national legislators endeavor to and actually pass, as in my home state of Iowa, laws mandating English as the “official” language, which has the effect of demonizing and marginalizing non-native born and nonEnglish speakers? So I ask again, what kinds of messages are we really sending our youth, and do we truly understand our own complicity in the bullying we see in our schools? Unless and until we grapple with the ways in which our society promotes and gives justification to such bullying, we will never truly solve the problem. For as Richard Rogers and Oscar Hammerstein reminded us in one of the songs in their 1949 Broadway musical, “South Pacific”: “You’ve got to be taught/ To hate and fear/You’ve got to be taught/ From year to year/It’s got to be drummed/ In your dear little ear/You’ve got to be carefully taught….”
Section 3: Community
SScontinued from page 11
EZRA to cultivate the courage to stand up for themselves has immediately already won the battle. The second you endow yourself to be your own best protector—your own best friend, your own best lover—you’ve already won. People can put you through a lot of horrific psychological, emotional and physical conditions, but if you have that for a support system for yourself, by yourself, there’s only so much anyone can ever do. In the movie, Charlie is a troubled loner, but you open your world up to him and affect his life immensely. Who were your queer role models growing up? My sisters, who were really strong and really empowered and who just were constantly making sure that I felt the love and that I was thinking for myself, but at the same time had my back. They were, for me as a younger person, the only role models I ever needed. My flesh and blood consumed almost my whole frame of perception from when I was a younger child. So your sisters are queer too? Yeah. It’s a whole queer-ass family! (Laughs) You know, it’s pretty much the most ridiculously happy and lucky situation a boy like me could ask for. I really thank all sorts of illusive deities for the family that I have every day. After seeing you as Frank N. Furter during The Rocky Horror Picture Show scene, something tells me this wasn’t your first time doing drag. You were that good. Thanks, darling! I’ve definitely dabbled from a young age. Those older sisters of mine actually started putting me through drag school when I was, like, 3. I remember running a lemonade stand and I was all made-up: My hair got did, I was in a dress and I remember getting it
going so hard even then that people would come up to one of my sisters and say, “I saw you and your sister selling lemonade today.” (Laughs) Yeah, I’ve definitely served some time in the mighty and honorable school of drag. When I was in middle school—it was combined with a high school, and the
theater department was the same and it was the year that high schools were allowed to do Rent—I jumped on Angel really fast, so I even got to dance in drag and rock some pumps. So, I’ve definitely had some informative experiences. You owe your sisters some gratitude for giving you drag training.
Dear Ask Lambda Legal, Q: I’m a gay man and have wanted to donate blood for some time. I heard the policy banning blood donations from men who have sex with men may be changing, is that true? A: Since 1983, gay men have been banned from donating blood—the actual policy says that if you are a man and have had sex with another man since 1977, you are not allowed to give. While intended to minimize transmission of HIV through a blood transfusion, this discriminatory policy is not supported by medical science. Earlier this year, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) asked for comments on a pilot study to assess alternative policies that would allow some gay and bisexual men to donate blood. In the pilot program, men who have sex with men (MSM) would be able to donate blood after a five-year or one-year waiting period
after their last sexual encounter with a man. Lambda Legal and a number of other HIV and LGBT advocacy organizations recently submitted comments to HHS about how to improve the pilot program because it does not adequately differentiate between lower and higher risk sexual behaviors and its proposal of a five-year or one-year deferral period isn’t in line with current medical science. Regardless of sexual orientation, the risk of acquiring a sexually transmitted infection like HIV varies based upon the frequency and type of sexual behavior, as well as an individual’s safe-sex practices. Therefore, screening questions should identify those who are at low risk for HIV and other sexually transmitted infections—including MSM who are in monogamous relationships or those who consistently practice safer sex— and allow them to donate blood. In addition, Lambda Legal strongly
suggests that the waiting period for all donors whose behavior is considered higher risk be consistent with—and not significantly longer than—the “window” period of a blood bank’s testing method. For some HIV tests, the window period for HIV detection can be as short as three weeks, while other HIV tests have a window period of about three months. For all available HIV testing, however, the waiting period would be considerably shorter than the one-year or five-year delays currently proposed. Deferral periods that are four to fifteen times the length of the relevant window period will continue to unnecessarily restrict the available blood supply by turning away donors based on stereotypes instead of science. While no changes have yet been made to the blood donation policy, we are hopeful that HHS will adopt new policies based on current medical knowledge and testing technology, instead of unjustified discriminatory stereotypes about gay and bisexual men. If you have any questions, or feel you have been discriminated against because of your gender, sexual orientation, or HIV status, contact Lambda Legal’s Help Desk at 1-866-542-8336, or see http://lambdalegal.org/help
Photos courtesy of Summit Entertainment.
ACCESSline Page 31 Really, man! I was such a goofily happy kid when we were doing that. It was such, like, a ridiculous dream come true. You sound like the polar opposite of your character in We Need to Talk About Kevin. You were so not Kevin as a child. Yeah, that’s true. But it’s good to stretch in many different directions. I’m still convinced I can go much darker than anywhere I’ve gone so far, and I’m pretty sure there are greater possibilities. I really feel like I’ve only just scratched a really minute surface. You develop a small crush on Charlie in Wallflower. Have you ever fallen for a straight boy before? I mean, I just never believe anyone when they say they’re straight. The media obviously isn’t sure how to interpret your “queer” identity; I’ve seen you called gay by many news outlets. Why do you prefer queer? And what do you think of just abandoning labels all together? I think queer is that doorway into the L, G, B and T. Queer is the doorway to where we should all be at. In a perfect Garden of Eden world, we are all pretty damn—I don’t know if you say genderless or omni-gendered—but we’re all omnisexual, we’re all balanced and none of us are participating in a binary. But until that day comes, these labels and these ways that we can identity ourselves to ourselves are all useful, and it’s really important that people figure out how to be inclusive and supportive of each and every one of them. That’s my feeling on it. I’m queer because I think the way society splits the human being in half is kind of tragic, and I think we should all be as open a book as possible when it comes to loving another human. Chris Azzopardi is the editor of Q Syndicate, the international LGBT wire service. Reach him via his website at www.chris-azzopardi.com.
Ask Lambda Legal: Blood Donations by Scott Schoettes
Regardless of sexual orientation, the risk of acquiring a sexually transmitted infection like HIV varies based upon the frequency and type of sexual behavior, as well as an individual’s safesex practices.
Scott Schoettes Scott Schoettes is the HIV Project Director for Lambda Legal, an organization committed to achieving full recognition of the civil rights of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people and people with HIV. Shortly after being diagnosed as HIVpositive in 1999, Schoettes left a decade-long career in the theater and began his legal studies at Georgetown University Law Center in Washington, D.C. In his position at Lambda Legal, Schoettes focuses on cases and issues involving and affecting individuals with HIV.
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Section 3: Community
Living a Leather Life Interview by Angela Geno-Stumme
Angel Velez and Raphael Ferreira. Photo taken by Mark Scott. Angel Velez and Raphael Ferreira share the story of their relationship within the Leather Community. From how they met, to Angel’s year as Mr. Chicago Leather 2012, the charities they are involved in, and the philosophies they live within the Leather Community. What inspired you to compete for Mr. Chicago Leather 2012? I believe that my desire to connect to the Chicago leather community is what prompted me to compete. I previously entered Mr. Ramrod contest in Fort Lauderdale in 2010 because of my involvement in the community. I relocated to Chicago and I saw it as an opportunity to develop new friendships and foster new relationships. The contest also provided me with a platform to present my story and help others in and outside the leather community. Tell us about the experience of being in the competition and what it was like to win. The experience was amazing and the competition was nerve wracking at times. Knowing that a portion of the competition required me to be in a jockstrap was a little stressful; although I must have liked it since I volunteered to model two jockstraps for charity auctions. Winning the contest felt surreal and the months that led to IML competition were very rewarding. What did you accomplish while holding your title and what did you give back to the community? My title year will end in January 2013. During the past nine months I held fundraising events for CLAW (Cleveland Leather Awareness Weekend) Nation, Chicago House, and the Children of Appalachia Project. I modeled jockstraps for charities, volunteered as a judge for leather and rubber events and became the poster guy for a CLAW nation event and CLAW 2013. I also spoke about Mr. Friendly and “Magnetic relationships” to help reduce the stigma attached to being HIV+. Angel, you have worked with many charities, which one is closest to your heart and why? The charity closest to my heart is the Children of Appalachia Project because this learning center is the vision of my ex-wife and her gay friend. This region has one of the poorest, most disadvantaged children in the United States. The learning center provides
access to educational tools, inspirational books, and physical activities. It also provides them with the opportunity to attain their GED, but most importantly it gives them hope. What do you feel are the most important philosophies within the Leather Community? And how do you try to live by those? Leather community stands for brother/ sisterhood and community. For me, leather embodies the military philosophies of loyalty, duty, respect, honor, integrity, and personal courage; those are the tenants that I live by. Leather is also about kink practices and I also enjoy those. You are Mr. July in the 2013 Behind the Sash Calendar; how does it feel to be a pin up? Angel: It feels great to know that my participation creates opportunities to further the efforts of the community and supports nonprofits. Raphael: It is good to be able to participate in the calendar because it gives to charities. Of course, I am also very happy that my relationship with Angel is so nicely displayed through the amazing talent of the photographer, Richard Yates. That man can bring the best out of anyone and I am humbled to have been able to be one of his subjects. Raphael, you mentioned how happy you were that your story was displayed by the photography of Richard Yates. Tell me what story this picture shows? What qualities of the Leather Community do you and Angel show in this photograph? Our sincere commitment to each other; the love, strength and tenderness of the moment, “where I am strong enough to be weak in Angel’s arms”. How did Raphael support you and contribute to your year as Mr. Chicago Leather 2012? He is my mentor, my best friend, and my source of strength. He is my traveling partner, and his guidance and support has been unparalleled. Raphael, what’s it been like for you as the partner of Mr. Chicago Leather 2012? Have there been any challenges? It has been challenging at times. I am more of a homebody than an out-there kind of guy, contrary to what many people may believe. But it has also been extremely rewarding to see Angel grow as a leatherman. When
I first met Angel he did not even know what a leather bar was. Now he can definitely teach some veterans in the leather community a thing or two. Could you share more of your story and how the Leather Community is a positive influence on your relationship? Angel: Leather is not a separate part of our relationship; it is part of who we are, we shape it and are shaped by it. When Raphael and I first met at the beach in Fort Lauderdale, he invited me on our first date that night to a leather bar (Ramrod Fort Lauderdale). I had no clue what I was in for, and I arrived to the place in jeans and a polo shirt. That was only the beginning of my leather journey, where I learned the bonds of brotherhood that stem from the leather lifestyle. For me, as for several people I know, it is that ah-ha moment when you realize: Oh! So THIS is who I am! This is what I like. Once I had a shot of it, there was no turning back. There is a lot of prohibition and false pretense in the world in general. I feel that in the leather community I can be who I am no matter what. From a single tender kiss on the cheek to… I live life to the fullest, and as Raphael always says: “Life is goooodah!” What have you learned during your
past year as Mr. Chicago Leather? I have learned the true meaning of brother/sisterhood and solidarity. I also learned what the different contest systems do for charity and for the advancement of social change to reduce stigma of HIV and the decriminalization of S&M. What words of wisdom would you give the new Mr. Chicago Leather 2013? To be mentally ready and open to an experience that will change their lives forever. Is there anyone you want to thank? There are many people that have been instrumental on my leather journey. First and foremost I want to thank Raphael for his unwavering support. Touché and David Boyer have been a great source of support. I would also thank Richard Yates for his friendship and his amazing shots, my IML brothers, IML staff and Chicago’s leather community. For more information about CLAW Nation go to www.clawinfo.org, for Chicago House go to www.chicagohouse.org, and for more information on Children of Appalachia Project go to http://childreachministries.org/ how-can-i-help/make-a-donation. You can find Angel Velez on Facebook. Behind the Sash is on sale now! Go to BehindTheSashCalendar.com to purchase it.
Angel Velez. Photo courtesy of Richard Yates Photography.
Section 3: Community
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Midwest Leather Weekend Shakes Up Saint Louis, MO
The Midwest Puppy Competitors - Pup Hercules, Pup Gadget, Pup Buster. Photo Courtesy of Scott Lokitz. This past weekend was the first ever Midwest Leather Weekend in Saint Louis, MO, USA. It was formed by Charlie Schoenherr and Christopher “Tyger” Roth who are the Producers of the Mr. Midwest Leather Contest and the Midwest Puppy Contest. Over a conversation at the Bad Dog Bar & Grill they decided that joining their two contests could provide an amazing weekend to the Midwest (and beyond) Leather Community. For those that attended, I think they can attest that it was really a weekend that was something special and many are already planning for 2013! The following are from the men themselves on the weekend: “The Midwest Puppy Contest had been something I have wanted to do for a while. It’s something my partner and I enjoy and there was just no events close, so I decided to step up to the plate and make things happen. It really was something very special with 3 pups competing in a fierce and very close competition and a huge crowd making it a great success. We had pups competing from as far away as Seattle for the title and our winner this year was
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RED WING at public events, to talk about the extraordinary community that is us, that is the LGBTQ community. We’re also having quiet conversations, meeting with people in not-so-public places, people who are conflicted. Because of my background as chief of staff at Interfaith Alliance in Washington DC, I have been meeting with clergy. Some clergy are really easy to meet with because they’re with us one hundred percent. Others are conflicted, and others, quite frankly, are not so friendly. But I think it’s important that we have conversations with those folks; that we meet them where they are, that we listen to their concerns, and that we ask them to listen to us. So our outreach and our education is both those public events, those forums and meetings you’ll read about in the paper or hear about from your friends, and then some very quiet conversations that just have to happen. As we move forward into next year, we’re very excited that the trans group, Transformations, have been meeting in our space. They’ve been meeting every week. The group is getting larger, and we’re really working with Transformations to help them get to the place that they can really begin to create their mission and their vision and become a real
Pup Hercules from Saint Louis, MO. He will be working with the Midwest Family (Mr. Midwest Leather, Mr. Midwest Rubber and Midwest Puppy) to bring more events for the community to Saint Louis and beyond. He also will compete November, 2013 for the ultimate tile at the International Puppy Contest in Tampa, FL. The weekend was a meshing of so many in the community and it was all about brotherhood and fun. Puppy Mosh Pits Friday and Saturday night were quite the show for the attendees as they watched the pups romp and play. Many are already planning to attend and compete next year for the Midwest Puppy title,” Christopher “Tyger” Roth. “The Mr. Midwest Leather Contest needed to continue and I had the opportunity to make that happen several years ago. We had such a great group of men competing this year and Matt Hengle from Lebanon, OH was the victor and named Mr. Midwest Leather in extremely close scoring of the contestants. I’m very proud of all our contestants and look forward to seeing what comes in the future. Matt now will be working with the community here
resource for the trans community. We have a great space here, and we’re actually working on the space to make it accessible to organizations that want to meet and just don’t have a space to be. For those groups of people who want a safe place to be to have a conversation, to plan things to do things. We’re not a community center, that’s not our mission, but we do have a great space, so we’re making that available to folks. We will have, beginning in January, an exhibition called “Family Matters,” and we’re working with the group Love Makes a Family to launch three different exhibits, one every two months, that really portrays families across the country. They’ll be LGBT families, they’ll be trans families, there’s an exhibit that’s around families with disabilities, another around interracial families, and another around LGBT families who are families of faith. And these are beautiful photographic exhibits with text, and around that we’re going to be wrapping forums and receptions and public events where, you know, not just the usual folks, but anyone can come in and experience the diversity of who we are. So those are the kinds of things that we’re working on. I think One Iowa is really taking stock of itself and figuring out where we can best serve the community. And we’re soliciting from the community their ideas—what
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in the Midwest and beyond and prepare for his run at International Mr. Leather next year. With the combination of the two contests we really have the best of all worlds here,” Charlie Schoenherr. The venue, The Bad Dog Bar and Grill, was definitely welcoming to everyone in for the weekend and went out of their way to make sure the Midwest Leather Weekend was successful. They welcome not only the Leather and Puppy Communities, but all aspects of various communities be it rubber, bondage, etc. In addition to the awarding of the titles over the weekend, several other big announcements were made: Sir Joseph Mastrapasqua, the co-owner of the International Puppy Contest in Tampa, FL honored Tyger Roth Friday night by making him one of the Co-Executive Producers of International Puppy. This was something he felt Tyger deserved for his work not only in the Saint Louis Puppy Community but beyond. He has gone out of his way time and time again helping and offering ideas to other Pup Groups
and helping to promote them. Saturday night during the Mr. Midwest Contest intermission, Pup Vidhra was awarded the 2012 Good Puppy award for the Midwest for outstanding presence in and out of puppy gear in the community, and upholding the standards of International Puppy. Pup Vidhra has been going out of his way to help the community by working on starting a local group, and by welcoming others and helping them feel at home in the Midwest Puppy Mosh Pit. He really exemplifies the traits of a “Good Puppy”. At the end of the Mr. Midwest Leather Contest; Charlie Schoenherr made the announcement that he was also adding a Co-Producer to the Mr. Midwest Leather Contest and named Mike Prater, Mr. Midwest Leather 2011, as the Co-Producer. Mike, Charlie stated, had gone above and beyond during his reign doing what he could in the community and helping wherever and whenever he could. Check out MidwestLeatherWeekend.com for more information.
Tron Carner & Christopher “Tyger” Roth are presented a “Thank You” award for all their hard work and dedication in the Midwest by Mike Prater - Mr Midwest Leather 2011 (far left) and Charlie Schoenherr - Mr Midwest Producer (far right). Photo courtesy of Scott Lokitz.
Jerry Miller is presented the Honorary Mr Midwest Title for his hard work and dedication through the years for the Midwest Leather Community. Photo courtesy of Scott Lokitz.
International Puppy 11/9 International Puppy will be holding its 2013 Contest November 9 – 11, 2012 at the Flamingo Resort in St. Petersburg, FL during Tampa Bay Leather n Fetish Pride Event and in conjunction with Tampa Bay LeatherSIR & Leatherboy contest. I n te r n a t i o n a l P u p py 2013 was created November 2011 to celebrate the puppy community. This Year, ALL Puppies from anywhere in the world (Leather, Rubber, or whatever) are welcomed to compete in our contest without going through a feeder contest. Application Fee is only $10.00 and the Winner gets: Title of International Puppy 2013 Winners Patch in Leather
Medallion Travel Fund to come back the following year for their Step Down and be a Judge $1000.00 Cash Prize And other Prizes REMEMBER: Currently we have opened our contest to ALL pups no matter if you are part of a feeder contest or not! If you’re interested in starting your own puppy contest or adding a puppy category to your existing contest and becoming a feeder for IPC, contact our U.S. Liaison Tyger at email@example.com, or if you’re outside the U.S contact Sir Joseph at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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too much work, get your guests to help! Forget those rolls of wrapping paper. Wrap your gifts in reusable items instead, such as, pretty baskets or fabric bags. 7. Try something new. For many of us, the holidays are all about tradition. Tradition is good, but those holiday habits are not always green ones. For example, if you always get a supermarket turkey, shop locally for a heritage turkey instead. Try volunteering on the holiday instead of watching football or stuffing your face with cookies. Consider buying a live tree, which you can plant in your yard or elsewhere in your community, instead of buying a cut Christmas tree. The small things can really make a big difference, and, who knows? You might like the new ways better! 8. Don’t buy into the hype. And the holidays are one of the most challenging times of year to avoid hype and commercialism. Ignore flashy store displays, commercials, and all of those catalogs and sales papers. Think before you buy. Don’t feel like you have to live up to commercial America’s idea of the “perfect” holiday—just be yourself. I hope these ideas help you have a calmer, more meaningful, and less stressful holiday entertaining season. In the end, each of these suggestions are about living deliberately, deciding what you want for yourself and your family. While living happily and purposefully often results in living a bit more lightly on the Earth, and that’s something we can all agree on.
they like, what they don’t like, where have we done well, where have we not. This is a time of assessment. We’ve gone through quite a transition over the past few years. I expect to be here for a while and I think my job is to help make One Iowa even more resonant to our community, and the only way to do that is to really listen to the community and understand it. Is One Iowa connected to or supporting any HIV initiatives? I think you can’t talk about the LGBT communities without also talking about AIDS/HIV. I think you and I both are of an age where we saw our community decimated by AIDS/HIV, and in so many ways our movement wouldn’t be where it is if it weren’t for the folks who worked around AIDS/HIV from the beginning. From the mainstream to the fringe, HIV activists have really helped build the foundation of our community. So yes, we are not an AIDS/HIV organization—we’re not a medical organization or a social service organization—but we do support AIDS/HIV education, outreach, and work. I’ve been here for three months. I don’t know what we have done in the past, but I do know that AIDS/HIV will be a part of our agenda in the ways that make the most sense to who we are. And I would hope that those activists within the AIDS/HIV community will help us create that agenda. I think it’s so important to figure out the best place for us there and how we can be the best advocates around the work. And again, I don’t want to promise anything we can’t deliver, but I can
promise you that we are listening, we are talking, and we hope to hear from more folks so we can really create our agenda around those issues. I think what’s really important is for people to understand that the epidemic is not over, that there are a lot of people living with AIDS/HIV and there are still people dying with AIDS/HIV. And there’s Iowa’s draconian HIV criminalization… We did an editorial around that, we’ve done blogging around that, we’ve had the conversations, but I think you’ll see a much more strategic response when we go into 2013. We need to look at how we can support the work that’s being done by AIDS Project Central Iowa and other organizations, so that when it makes sense for us to speak out or when it makes sense for us to reach out to our constituency and have the conversations, that we do that. You know, again, I think it takes some real conversations and some real listening on our part. But I’ve been part of this movement for a long, long time, and even though we know that AIDS is not a “gay” disease, the response to AIDS/HIV came from our community. It came from the women and men who had the courage to take to the streets, who had the courage to come out and really change how things worked. And I believe that who we are, as activists and advocates and rabble rousers, is still informed by the folks of the early 90s. For more information on AIDS Project of Central Iowa go to AIDSProjectCI.org. For more information on One Iowa go to OneIowa.org or find it on Facebook.
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EVIL DEAD are going to be laughing. The songs and dance numbers made the night with Deadites dancing to “Do the Necronomicon”. While Ash and Scott clasp each other close, Flamenco style, in “What the F*ck Was That”. Each song is hilarious from title to performance, choosing a different dance style or taking inspiration from other actors. Comedian Jack Black was the muse for Jake’s number “Good Old Reliable Jake” where Jake introduces his honky tonky-self. Jake’s performance is so good we don’t even care that the love of his life, Bobby Joe, was considered redundant and omitted from the musical—Jake has us splitting our sides without her. Even the little things make you laugh; the doors opening in time with the Deadite’s chants, the moose coming alive to harass Ash, and the groundhog running around on the fireplace’s mantel. But what truly brings the show together are the trees, yes the trees. They start by moving in slowly to reveal the evil Necronomicon to the audience, and throughout the night they are popping through windows, grabbing people, and trailing their long tree branch fingers through the scenes. They are a subtle humor that you just can’t be without. Don’t be a Deadite… go see “Evil Dead: The Musical” before it’s too late! “Evil Dead: The Musical” is at the Civic Center’s Stoner Theater in Des Moines, Iowa through November 11th. Go to StagewestIowa.com for more details and tickets.
Section 3: Community
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