SERVING THE COMMUNITY SINCE 1979
MARYLAND’S LGBT COMMUNITY NEWSPAPER JULY 22 - AUGUST 4, 2011 VOLUME XXXIII, NUMBER 14 WWW.BALTIMOREGAYLIFE.COM
BISEXUAL MAJORITY PLUS: n New MD Marriage Coalition n Surviving Deployment under DADT n Alexis Mateo Parties at the Hippo
Baltimore's 1st Out Gay Rapper
PAGE 2 • JULY 22 - AUGUST 8, 2011
BALTIMORE’S GAY LIFE NEWSPAPER
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VOLUME 33, NUMBER 14 PAGE 3
am part of the problem. In my seven months as editor of Gay Life, our community center’s newspaper, I have ignored the bisexual community. We consciously balance gay and lesbian topics of interest, and represent the transgender community in every issue, but I’ve fallen into the evidently prevalent practice of lumping bisexuals in with everyone else.
As diverse as we are, we have a tendency to compartmentalize ourselves, placing each subdivision of the LGBTQA community into a separate box. But bisexuals, by definition, straddle at least two, sometimes three, of these subdivisions. Does their ability to transcend labels threaten our own sexuality, in addition to our assumptions about the sexuality of others? Could our tendency to ignore bisexuals reveal something about our own insecurities? There are no easy or set answers, but examining areas that make us uncomfortable can help us learn and grow. Gay Life strives to represent every facet of our community, and I invite you—the community—to let us know whenever you see an opportunity for us to improve. In the meantime, please enjoy our feature stories on bisexuality. And let us know what you think by commenting online, or writing me directly at email@example.com.
Maggie Beetz, Editor
Out Front PAGE 5 COMMUNITY: Marylanders for Marriage Equality Launches 2012 Campaign Pride 2011: The numbers are in! By Gary Wolnitzek PAGE 6 MUSIC: Meet DDm, Baltimore’s first openly gay rapper. By Michael Quander PAGE 8 DINING OUT: Chazz: A Bronx Original. Last issue’s interview with actor Chazz Palminteri is followed by a meal in his new Baltimore Restaurant. By John Cullen and Marty Shayt PAGE 9 BOOKS: “The Last Deployment: How a Gay, Hammer-Swinging Twentysomething Survived a Year in Iraq” by Bronson Lemer. Review By Terri Solomon
Headline News PAGE 10 NATIONAL : By Rex Wockner with Bill Kelley PAGE 11 INTERNATIONAL NEWS: By Rex Wockner with Bill Kelley
Out Going PAGE 17 SPOTLIGHT: Youth Poetry Night. By Rachel Roth DATEBOOK: Calendar of Events. By Rachel Roth
After Hours PAGE 18 HUNTER ON THE PROWL!: Lady Lisa’s Drag Stage, July 4th Fun, and More. By Mark Hunter BSCENE: Alexis Mateo of RuPaul’s Drag Race at Club Hippo. By Samatra Johnson
FEATURE PAGE 12: BISEXUALITY
The Bisexual Resource Center talks to Gay Life A personal viewpoint from Elizabeth Kenderdine What does the research say?
ON THE COVER
PAGE 14 OP ED: How Moveable Feast helps Marylanders. By Emily Sze
PAGE 4 • JULY 22 - AUGUST 8, 2011
PAGE 14 SPEAKING OUT: Bi-phobia and the flip-flopping of basketball player Sheryl Swoops. By Rev. Irene Monroe
DDM. Photo by Max Milli Photography
VISIT US ONLINE AT BALTIMOREGAYLIFE.COM
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Gay Life is a publication of the Gay and Lesbian Community Center of Baltimore. Gay Life is published every other Friday in Baltimore, Maryland, with distribution throughout the Mid-Atlantic region. Copyright 2011. All Rights Reserved. Gay Life is copyrighted and may not be reproduced without the expressed written consent of the publisher. Opinions expressed are those of the writers and do not necessarily reflect those of Gay Life or its publisher.
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Contributors John Cullen, Mark Hunter, Bill Kelley, Elizabeth Kenderdine, Rev. Irene Monroe, Michael Quander, Rachel Roth, Marty Shayt, Terri Solomon, Emily Sze, Rex Wockner, Gary Wolnitzek Photographers: Samatra Johnson, Jay W Photos Newspaper Committee: Trevor Ankeny, Bud Beecher, Kelly D. McClain, Terri Solomon
BALTIMORE’S GAY LIFE NEWSPAPER
Marylanders for Marriage Equality Launches 2012 Campaign Baltimore City Hall was the stage for a press conference on July 12, where Marylanders for Marriage Equality announced the launch of a broad coalition effort to pass a civil marriage equality bill in the 2012 legislative session. Marylanders for Marriage Equality is a statewide coalition of groups, including Progressive Maryland, Equality Maryland, Service Employees International Union, Communications Workers of America, the American Civil Liberties Union, the Human Rights Campaign, Freedom to Marry, Catholics for Equality, the Maryland Black Family Alliance and Pride in Faith.
“The basic thread of any family is love, and Maryland should honor that love and the commitment of the thousands of gay and lesbian families who are seeking what we seek: to protect our families,” said Rion Dennis, executive director of Progressive Maryland, a nonprofit organization focused on “improving the lives of working families in our state.” The unified campaign of Marylanders for Equality will work to secure the votes necessary for the passage of a civil marriage equality bill in Maryland. If Maryland legalizes same-sex marriage, it will be the seventh state to grant marriage rights to gay and lesbian couples. n
Pride 2011:The Numbers Are In!
Jeffery A. Klug, LCPC
So what does it take to pull off a successful Baltimore Pride Celebration? Here’s just a taste of what makes Baltimore Pride so very, very great:
2 Village Square, Suite 211, Baltimore, MD 21210
BY GARY WOLNITZEK
Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor 410 241 4215 JeffKlugCounseling.com
• 23 generous and supportive sponsors • 27 committed volunteers tirelessly devoting over 800 hours of their time • 34 amazing, engaging, and entertaining performers and bands • 57 parade entries proudly marching • 151 vendors informing, selling, feeding, and tending bar • 232 tipsy and twirling Twilight on the Terrace attendees • 12,500 proud and jubilant Pride Celebrants celebrating the LGBT community Data compiled by The Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Community Center of Baltimore and Central Maryland.
Check out photos from Baltimore Pride 2011 at BaltimoreGayLife.com WWW.BALTIMOREGAYLIFE.COM
Laura June, Ph.D. Licensed Psychologist Psychotherapy for Individuals and Couples Imago Relationship Therapy Stone Mansion 4901 Spring Garden Dr. Baltimore, MD 21209 Ph 410-235-7899 firstname.lastname@example.org www.drlaurajune.com VOLUME 33, NUMBER 14 PAGE 5
outfront MUSIC Photos By Max Milli Photography
DDm BALTIMORE’S FIRST OPENLY GAY RAPPER BY MICHAEL QUANDER
Baltimore is widely known as the city of firsts. And a new first has begun to emerge in the form of a lyrical artist named DDm. He is known as the first openly gay rapper in Baltimore to receive consistent on-air radio play.
Over the years DDm has practiced and perfected his craft into one that is unique, offering a wide range of variety and raw passion. He developed the name DDm or Dappa Dan Midas because of his dapper appearance and drive to succeed.
“Let’s get this straight, I’m not the only gay rapper in Baltimore,” he laughed. “But I am the only openly gay rapper in Baltimore.”
DDm currently resides in the Arthaus in the Gwynns Falls area of Baltimore. The Arthaus houses a group of visual and lyrical artists that have come together and are working toward achievement in their respective fields of interest. This multimedia sanctuary also houses DMVjams.com, a forerunner in digital media that promotes area talent.
Emmanuel “DDm” Moss, 23, grew up in the Park Heights area of Baltimore, Md. Although he was not afforded a privileged childhood, his mother made sure he was exposed to education, arts, and culture. DDm first started rapping at the age of 13 on the blacktop of Mergenthaler Vocational - Technical Senior High School. He did this as an outlet from growing up in an underprivileged community on the westside of Baltimore. He first began by competing in cyphers and rap battles, the underground style of raping that combines boasting and insulting your component, which he acclaims to his showmanship and stage presence. “Battling is like a skill builder because it shapes your personality as an artist,” DDm said. “It’s almost like the prerequisite of getting into the rap game.” PAGE 6 • JULY 22 - AUGUST 8, 2011
Many supporters describe DDm’s music as fun, colorful, and textured with a vintage feel that ensures it is timeless and classic. “I want people to think when they hear my songs, but I don’t want them to feel like they’re sitting in a classroom,” he said. “I think the best learning is from living. I want people to live my music.” His influences range from Biggie Smalls to Pink Floyd, and Earth Wind and Fire to Freddy Mercury, though his principal influence is Kimberley “Lil Kim” Jones for her originality and presence as an artist. DDm BALTIMORE’S GAY LIFE NEWSPAPER
TAKING PRIDE IN OUR MENU SINCE 1996 also derives inspiration on music and fashion from the traditions and regional artistic differences of Baltimore’s art district, New York City, Great Britain, Africa, and Japan. With an expanded palate for music and fashion, DDm brings range and a distinctive perception of variant cultures to everything he produces.
400 east pratt street baltimore md 21202 bohemecafe.com weekdays 7 - 3
As DDm continues to emerge as an artist in Baltimore, being the first openly gay rapper has presented its own challenges. Although DDm has gained recognition and support from local media with his current single, “Legendary,” he finds it hard to receive support from his heterosexual male counterparts.
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“I get support from the female artists in Baltimore, but the guys won’t come to a DDm show or work with me at all,” he said. DDm believes it will be challenging to make people understand that his sexual orientation in not a crutch and his music can stand side-byside with the best. As he gains momentum, he is anticipating the backlash and criticism from the black church and others from the African-American community. “There is no other option for me, I have to succeed. I know that I can’t be weak or slack off,” said DDm. Despite the challenges, DDm also sees being a member of the LGBTQ community as a positive because “we are some of the most creative and inspiring people on earth.” He believes that the edict and terminology of the community will always be present in his music. As reports of bullying and subsequent suicides—along with health disparities— rise among LGBTQ youth, DDm hopes to increase awareness in Baltimore and let youth know that “you come from a lineage of people that have always survived and always made a way, you are not the only person that’s going through that… and ultimately you have to get a little bit tougher and go where the love is.” He puts emphasis on finding your own outlet and persevering though the struggle because eventually “it gets better.” Knowing how hard it is to “come out” of the closet as a gay black man, DDm gave recognition to the current social media campaign in Baltimore, “HIV Stops With Me,” for the bravery of their spokes models to proudly show their faces and stand up for this cause. He said, “If you had asked me two years ago, if I’d be out rapping, I would have said no...So the fact that these kids are showing their faces and saying ‘Look at me, I’m gay, and I have HIV’ says a lot.” Similar to another inspiration, Elton John, DDm hopes to continue writing in a way that captures feeling and emotion. He hopes that his music eventually takes him overseas. In the meantime, fans can see him perform for free at Moby’s in Fells Point or find him on social media by searching GoDDm. n DETAILS: DDm at Moby’s. Wednesday, July 27, 11pm. 721 S. Broadway. FREE. 410.732.7940. WWW.BALTIMOREGAYLIFE.COM
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Find Out! While you Wait
Free confidential or anonymous HIV testing. Call– 410-638-3060 Harford County Health Department 1 North Main St. Bel Air, Md 21014 VOLUME 33, NUMBER 14 PAGE 7
outfront DINING OUT Photos courtesy Chazz–A Bronx Original
Chazz – A Bronx Original BY JOHN CULLEN AND MARTY SHAYT
Following our interview with actor Chazz Palminteri, of “A Bronx Tale,” “The Usual Suspects,” “Bullets Over Broadway, “ and an episode of “Modern Family,” we were invited to return as his guests to sample the food at Chazz – A Bronx Original (which opened June 2011, and is co-owned/managed by the owners of nearby Aldo’s). The restaurant is large and open with four separate dining areas plus seating in front of a coal-fired pizza oven. Huge floor-to-ceiling murals of the Bronx dominate the rear of the space while a wall of windows faces warehouses across Aliceanna Street. Stainless steel top tables add a contemporary look (but table spacing can be tight). The Italian themed menu features six “Bronx-style” appetizers ($8-15), eight intriguing veggie small dishes ($5-6), three side salads ($7-12), bruschette ($9), pizza ($10-17 for a generous 13-inch pie), four pastas ($17-22), six entrees ($2025), and six desserts ($6-9). Wines by the glass start at $9 (with “half” glasses available for tasting) while beers start at $5. PAGE 8 • JULY 22 - AUGUST 8, 2011
BALTIMORE’S GAY LIFE NEWSPAPER
The Last Deployment: By Bronson Lemer BY TERRI SOLOMON
Our waitress was friendly and knowledgeable about the menu. We decided to try the featured caprese salad ($14) and eggplant parmigiana tower ($9). From a selection of some standard and quite unusual pizzas, we decided to sample “potato” pizza ($11) and then opted for shrimp fra diavolo ($22) and veal spezzantino (Italian for stew, $25) for entrees. The caprese salad presented a three-inch circle of soft Italian burrata cheese (imported by Chazz’s) next to a mound of roasted red, yellow, and orange grape tomatoes laying in olive oil with a thin drizzle of balsamic; while visually attractive, the flavors were so subtle that we felt something was lacking. By contrast, the eggplant with slices of fried eggplant stacked vertically with a light filling of marinara and cheese made for a winning combination of taste and texture that earned a thumbsup from both of us. The potato pizza had a layer of very thin Yukon Gold potato slices misted with olive oil and salt on top of a thin crust with large chewy rim with a very light layer of cheese. Though simply constructed, we found that it was a very unusual yet interesting pizza that we liked a lot. Marty is a big “diavolo” fan; although he was quite pleased with the pasta with a light blend of sauce, he was pretty disappointed in the six shrimp, which looked medium sized and lost on the mound of pasta; John would have preferred more sauce on the pasta and wished it was more “devilish.” The veal spezzatino was a simple presentation with small pieces of veal with mushrooms, peppers, and potatoes topped by a small slice of grilled polenta. While the veal was tender, John felt that the preparation was just too plain (some onion, WWW.BALTIMOREGAYLIFE.COM
garlic, or spices could make a huge improvement!) while the portion seemed small for the price. For dessert, we sampled chocolate espresso torte ($8 and a Chazz favorite!) and affogato (Italian for “drowned,” $7). The small torte was incredibly rich, smooth and chocolaty and came with a scoop of raspberry/ lime granita, an unsweetened blend of fresh raspberry and ice that was incredibly good. The affogato arrived looking suspiciously uninteresting with a single scoop of vanilla gelato and a pale cookie; then the server poured a demitasse of espresso with a touch of sambuca over it and the taste of the resulting combination proved way more interesting than we ever would have guessed at first. Both desserts get a thumbs-up from us. Chazz’s kitchen produces simple combinations of quality ingredients without noticeable spices or enhancement (the down side of this is, at least for us, the results can sometimes prove disappointingly blah). While some menu choices are comparative bargains (e.g., delicious 13-inch pizzas at $10-11), other items raised our eyebrows in disbelief (e.g., chicken parmigiana with an optional half order of pasta runs more than $30!) Service was uneven at times (but this should improve with time). Chazz offers some really good, “original” dishes which we haven’t found at other Baltimore Italian restaurants and our enjoyment of these will have us coming back to try more. n DETAILS: Chazz–A Bronx Original, 1415 Aliceanna St. 410.522.5511. Open for lunch and dinner 7 days, 11am-11pm. Full bar, vegetarian options, $9 valet. ChazzBronxOriginal.com.
Photos courtesy University of Wisconsin Press
Bronson Lemer needed something to get him out of North Dakota. When an Army National Guard recruiter extols the financial benefits of becoming a reservist, the then high school senior thinks it sounds like a good gig—he’ll receive money for college and earn the respect of his family. Five and a half years later, Lemer has survived a seven month deployment to Kosovo, and the return to civilian college life. He’s ready for his six year commitment to be up—the contrast between the closeted gay man he’s forced to be on weekends and the openly gay student is wearing on him. “They call us fags because they think they are so radically different from us. They don’t think about the men sitting next to them,” Lemer writes. “They assume everyone wearing the army green is just like them.” And then he’s deployed to Iraq. “The Last Deployment” is Lemer’s first-person remembrance of what it was like to be an American soldier in the desert. His memoir is rife with descriptions of sand dunes, airport terminals, boots kicking clouds of sand into the air, tanks, women in black abayas in the heat, the watchful eyes of Kuwaiti and Iraqi men and children, and The Golden Shower, “an actual shower head with a valve instead of a water bottle.” What Lemer adds to the collection of American war writings is a timely, if somewhat overanalyzed, reflection on his experience as a gay serviceman before the recent repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” Lemer can form close relationships with the men he lives, works, and plays with, but he can never trust them enough to tell them who he really is. His narrative follows the same model—readers are given a barrage of information about modern army life, but little about the loves and losses of Lemer himself. The details Lemer discloses are closely scrutinized for larger meaning: What does it mean to be a soldier in this complicated war?
What is the nature of friendship? How do we memorialize our comrades? While the old writer’s adage of “Show, Don’t Tell” could have benefitted this text, as a personal story of one young man trying to make sense of his sexual and military identity, “The Last Deployment” is an interesting read. n DETAILS: “The Last Deployment: How a Gay, Hammer-Swinging Twentysomething Survived a Year in Iraq,” by Bronson Lemer, University of Wisconsin Press, July 2011, Paperback, 978-0299-28214-1, $24.95, 236 p.
VOLUME 33, NUMBER 14 PAGE 9
Photos by Rex Wockner
C Active duty troops
A Marc Solomon
Rhode Island Civil-Union Law Takes Effect
Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee signed a civil-union bill July 2 and it took effect immediately. Although it extends the rights of marriage to civil-union same-sex couples, gay activist groups opposed the law because of concessions made to religious forces. “Not only does the bill propose a separate-andunequal status instead of ending the denial of marriage itself, it grants an unprecedented license to discriminate against same-sex couples and their families,” said Marc Solom Freedom to Marry’s Marc Solomon.
Active-Duty Military March in San Diego Pride Parade Some 300 active-duty troops (the majority of the contingent) and veterans marched in San Diego’s LGBT Pride parade July 16. As far as can be determined, it was a U.S. first. It was a symbolic goodbye to Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, which, while not quite dead-dead, is apparently dead enough. The military gay ban has been struck down by a federal court and the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has refused to reinstate it—at least as far as active-duty troops are concerned—while the federal government plods through implementing Congress’ repeal of the policy. Raucous cheering greeted the military contingent for the length of the parade route through the gay Hillcrest neighborhood. Following a July 14 front-page story in the San Diego Union-Tribune, the crowd of 155,000 seemed aware that it was seeing history in the making. The troops and veterans marched in groups broken down by military branch. The Navy and Marines groupings were much larger than the others, given that San Diego is home to Navy and Marine bases.
Justice Dept. Files Groundbreaking Pro-Gay Brief The Obama administration broke new ground July 1 in a legal brief filed in the case of a San Francisco federal-court employee, Karen Golinski, who has been trying to put her wife on her work health-care plan. The expansive brief from the Justice Department says the federal Defense of Marriage Act, which prohibits the government from recognizing same-sex marriages, is unconstitutional because governmental classifications based on sexual orientation should be viewed through the legal lens of heightened scrutiny. That approach should be used, the government said, because “gay and lesbian individuals have suffered a long and significant history of purposeful discrimination,” because “sexual orientation is an immutable characteristic,” and because “gays and lesbians are a minority group that has historically lacked political power.”
The brief says Congress passed DOMA in 1996 in substantial part because of “animus toward gay and lesbian individuals.” The document goes on to detail a litany of anti-gay sins of federal, state, and local governments over the decades. “The federal government has played a significant and regrettable role in the history of discrimination against gay and lesbian individuals,” the brief says.
PAGE 10 • JULY 22 - AUGUST 8, 2011
Gov. Jerry Brown Signs California LGBT Teaching Bill
In a U.S. first, Gov. Jerry Brown on July 14 signed into law a bill that requires California public schools to teach about LGBT people’s contributions to the economic, political and social development of California and the U.S. “History should be honest. This bill ... ensures that the important contributions of Americans from all backgrounds and walks of life are included in our history books,” Brown said. The new law also prohibits classroom instruction and schoolsponsored activities that promote a discriminatory bias on the basis of sexual orientation, and requires that newly acquired social-sciences textbooks and other social-sciences instructional material used in California adhere to the bill’s requirements. Sponsored by Sen. Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, the measure cleared the Assembly July 5 in a 49-25 vote. It passed the Senate 23-14 on April 14.
New Marriage Campaign Launched in Maryland Marylanders launched a new campaign July 12 to pass a same-sex-marriage law next year. A bill to legalize same-sex marriage passed the Senate this year but crashed and burned in the House of Delegates at the last minute. The new campaign, kicked off at Baltimore City Hall, will be run by a coalition called Marylanders for Marriage Equality. House of Delegates member Heather Mizeur said the group is composed of advocacy organizations, congregations, businesses, unions, Democrats, Republicans, and independents. Same-sex marriage is legal in Connecticut, Iowa, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Vermont, and Washington, D.C.
BALTIMORE’S GAY LIFE NEWSPAPER
LGBTs Picket Russian Embassy in London LGBT people picketed the Russian Embassy in London on July 1, urging that Russia’s voting rights at the Council of Europe be suspended. Despite a European Court of Human Rights ruling this year that Moscow’s yearly bans of gay pride violate the European Convention on Human Rights, authorities there prohibited the march again in May. When a small group of people attempted to defy the ban, 18 of them were aggressively arrested, much the same as in previous years, when the activists also were beaten by anti-gay hooligans and assaulted by religious counterprotesters.
“Prohibiting Moscow Gay Pride and arresting the participants is illegal under Russia’s constitution, which guarantees the right to peaceful assembly,” said noted British activist Peter Tatchell, who joined the London demonstration. “It defies a ruling by the European Court of Human Rights that the event should be allowed to proceed. Some of us are now pressing the Council of Europe to suspend Russia’s right to vote in the Council’s parliamentary assembly. Russia must not be permitted to defy the European Court with impunity.”
Gays Arrested at Russian Embassy in Paris
Indian Health Minister: Gay Sex is ‘Totally Unnatural’
Five gay people were arrested outside Russia’s embassy in Paris on July 8. They were attempting to present a petition from AllOut. org, signed by some 14,000 people, opposing Moscow’s years-long ban on gay pride and Russia’s flouting of a European Court of Human Rights ruling that the bans violate European law. Arrested were ACT UP/Paris’ Audrey Grelombe and Eric Marty, International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHO) President LouisGeorges Tin, Moscow Pride founder Nikolai Alekseev, and American photographer Charles Meacham. They reportedly were detained for not having permission to gather. Early reports suggested Alekseev might face an additional charge for some kind of alleged altercation with a police officer. Later in the evening, some 45 people protested at the embassy against the earlier incident. Reports said 150 anti-riot police and 25 police vans showed up for the second demonstration.
Gay sex is “totally unnatural,” Indian Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said July 4. Speaking in the Hindi language at a national HIV/AIDS conference, Azad said: “Unfortunately, in the world and in our country also, this disease has come where men have sex with each other, which is totally unnatural and which should not happen, yet it does. In our country, the numbers of men having sex with men are substantial.” Azad later said he had been quoted out of context. Calcutta’s Telegraph newspaper harshly criticized Azad in an editorial.
“Although, as a citizen of a liberal democracy, Mr. Azad is entitled to his personal views, backward and ignorant as they may be, he has no right to air them on a public platform as the health minister of the nation,” the paper said. “Mr. Azad has not only seriously undermined the fight against HIV/AIDS in India but has also tainted the image of an aspiring superpower on the international stage.”
Spanish Same-Sex Marriage Statistics Reported
Same-Sex Marriage Campaign Launches in Uruguay
More than 18,000 same-sex couples got married in Spain between 2005, when it became possible, and the end of 2010, according to newly released government statistics. The figures show 18,634 same-sex marriages have been registered. However, the State Federation of Lesbians, Gays, Transsexuals and Bisexuals (FELGBT) believes that not all the marriages have been recorded, and that the actual number is 23,000. In 2010, 2.1 percent of marriages were between people of the same sex, according to the official statistics. There were 2,216 male marriages and 1,367 between women.
Uruguay’s Colectivo Ovejas Negras (Black Sheep Collective) has launched a TV-ad campaign featuring 34 Uruguayan celebrities saying they support legalization of same-sex marriage. A marriage-equality bill was introduced in Parliament three months ago. “The bill—written by Uruguay’s first transgendered lawyer—will soon be discussed by Parliament, and we’re optimistic,” said the collective’s Álvaro Queiruga. The ads are online at youtube.com/ ovejasweb.
National & International News Provided By Rex Wockner with Bill Kelley Find complete news stories at BaltimoreGayLife.com/news. VOLUME 33, NUMBER 14 PAGE 11
THE SILENT B
Bisexual Resource Center President Ellyn Ruthstrom
A CONVERSATION ABOUT BISEXUALITY
Ellyn Ruthstrom, president of the Bisexual Resource Center recently spoke to Gay Life about bisexuals, the LGBT community’s often excluded majority. Gay Life: What are the most common misconceptions about bisexuals?
GL: Do bisexual men and bisexual women face different challenges/issues?
ELLYN RUTHSTROM: Bisexuals are promiscuous and will have sex with anyone. Bisexuals have to have sex with women and men at the same time and/or bisexuals are equally attracted to women and men. Bisexuals can’t be monogamous or live in committed partnerships. And, of course, bisexuals don’t exist; they are just gay people afraid to come out of the closet.
ER: Bi women and bi men experience a lot of the same challenges in terms of fighting the misconceptions and stereotypes mentioned above. However, bi men are even more often accused of being gay and closeted than bi women and there are even fewer examples of famous out bi men who can be used as role models.
Promiscuity is a behavior that can be found in all sexual orientations; it isn’t innate to bisexuality. Bisexuals recognize their potential to be attracted to more than one sex: some bisexuals feel equal attraction to men and women; many have a stronger attraction to one sex; some feel their attractions fluctuate over time; and some may recognize their attractions to more than one sex but only have physical relationships with one sex. Many bisexuals commit to being monogamous partners and feel satisfied within their relationships. Some bisexuals choose to have relationships with more than one person, just as people of other orientations do. All I can say to the last one is I’m bisexual, therefore bisexuals exist, and I am out of the closet, thank you.
GL: How does the gay community typically react to the bisexual community or bisexual individuals? ER: Fortunately, there are some gay and lesbian people who are supportive and understanding of bisexuals. Often these are our lovers or close friends who take the time to truly find out what is different about being bisexual and respecting that difference. However, there are still far too many people in the gay and lesbian community who don’t bother to learn more about bisexuality and who believe and continue to perpetuate the stereotypes I mentioned. Your readers may be familiar with the case of the bisexual athletes who were ruled by the Gay Softball World Series to be considered heterosexual and their
team’s second place award was taken away from them. The National Center for Lesbian Rights represented the men in their suit against the league—and I commend NCLR for taking this case—but they recently lost the case. It’s just an example of how some gays and lesbians do not want to view bisexuals as part of the community. We get plenty of fundraising requests from LGBT organizations, so our money is good enough, but we aren’t considered gay enough for certain things. There are many ways that gay and lesbian organizations and individuals can be more supportive of the bi community and individuals. The BRC produces a brochure about how to be an ally to a bi person and we hope that more people will take heed of its suggestions.
GL: Do bisexuals have a community in the way that gays and lesbians define it? ER: Yes, there is an active bi community that has built up support groups, social groups, and activist organizations for over 25 years. Some cities have more developed communities than others; Boston is very lucky to have a very vibrant and diverse community that offers people many different ways to meet other bis. Other major cities that have organized bi communities are Minneapolis, San Francisco, Seattle, New York, Dallas and Chicago. On the international front, the UK, the Netherlands, Australia, Spain, and Canada are among the other countries where there are organized bi communities. I also want to say, though, that many bi people consider ourselves a part of the gay and lesbian community as well. We volunteer and financially support
BISEXUAL INVISIBILITY: IMPACTS AND RECOMMENDATIONS This January 2011 report by the San Francisco HRC compiles multiple studies, explains the problems that result from a lack of bisexual-specific research, and offer recommendations. Find the full report online at BaltimoreGayLife.com. Here are some highlights: n Bisexuals experience high rates of being ignored, discriminated against, demonized, or rendered invisible by both the heterosexual and the lesbian and gay communities. (p.1) n Self-identified bisexuals make up the largest single population within the LGBT community. In one study, approx. 1/2 of LGB people selfidentified as bisexual, including about 1/3 of the men and 2/3 of the women. (p.2)
History n The celebration that turned into New York’s annual Pride Parade was started by Brenda Howard, a bisexual who also organized the first anniversary rally in honor of the Stonewall uprising. (p.5)
PAGE 12 • JUNE 8 - JULY 21, 2011
n In the 1980s and 1990s, bisexuals were blamed for the spread of HIV, even though it is spread through unprotected sex, not a bisexual identity. A similar misconception persists today regarding men on the “down low” infecting unsuspecting female partners, particularly in the African American community. (p.11) n The transgender and bisexual communities have long worked together as allies, especially when lobbying gay and lesbian groups for more inclusion of their issues. (p.8)
Health n Bisexuals report higher rates of hypertension, poor or fair physical health, smoking, and risky drinking than heterosexuals or lesbians/ gays. (p.11)
n Most HIV and STI prevention programs don’t adequately address the health needs of bisexuals. (p.11) n Bisexual women in monogamous relationships have an increased rate of domestic violence compared to other women. (p.11) n In one study, bisexual women had significantly lower levels of education, were more likely to be living with income below 200% of the poverty level, and had more children living in the household, compared to lesbians. (p.12) n Bisexuals are far more likely to feel suicidal than their heterosexual, gay, and lesbian counterparts. (p.12) n Older bisexuals are at risk for feeling isolated from their community, which may lead to depression and social isolation. (p.24) BALTIMORE’S GAY LIFE NEWSPAPER
Elizabeth Kenderdine (right) and her partner Rebecca Trexler
Boston Pride contingent in 2010, 25-year-anniversary of the BRC
organizations (even ones that refuse to add bisexual to their names), we participate in community events, we celebrate pride, and we have long-tem relationships and friendships with gays and lesbians. Our histories are intertwined and so are our communities.
GL: What are some of the biggest frustrations for bisexual individuals/activists? ER: One of the worst frustrations is often feeling that no matter how many people come out as bisexual—to name a few celebrities: Anna Paquin, Alan Cumming, Lady Gaga — people still say we don’t exist. This just doesn’t make sense to me. The recent Williams Institute report concluded that there are actually more Americans that identify as bisexual than identify as gay or lesbian. We are not an insignificant subgroup. And, sad to say, many bis pass as gay or lesbian within the community just to make their lives easier, especially ones who have long-term same-sex relationships. It’s also frustrating when someone tries to convince us that we aren’t bi because of how they judge our behavior or feelings. If would be like me telling a lesbian who has been single for a long time that she’s not a lesbian anymore because she hasn’t dated a woman in suchasucha timeframe. My sexuality is about me not about who I’m dating or committed to—and certainly not how someone else judges me.
GL: In what ways is the bisexual community unrepresented? ER: I was active in the nineties with the movement to add the name bisexual to many community groups and events such as pride marches. It is now very accepted to use the term LGBT, but too often an organization only includes the letter in its name but is not inclusive in other ways such as consciously inviting bisexuals to participate in their organization or in high-
lighting bi community. Something as simple as when honoring famous LGBT celebrities or heroes or writers, etc. there often are either no bisexuals included or their bisexuality is not mentioned. Again, I encourage gays and lesbians to find ways of being allies to bi individuals and to educate themselves about bisexuality. Reach out to bi groups and get them involved with your activities.
GL: How are transgender individuals represented within the bisexual community? ER: There are many trans-identified people within the bi community. There have been strong ties between our communities for many years and the bi community was ahead of many gay and lesbian organizations in being trans-inclusive.
GL: Does the bisexual community face unique racial issues compared to heterosexuals and/ or gays/lesbians? ER: I don’t think we have unique racial issues, but it is important for us to be racially and culturally sensitive in understanding other people’s perspectives. Race and culture intersect with our sexual orientation so we do not all have the same experience of how that plays out in our lives.
GL: Were you surprised by any of the findings in the San Francisco HRC’s report “Bisexual Invisibility: Impacts and Recommendations”? ER: I was very impressed with the San Francisco report but not surprised by its findings. It’s important to recognize how invisibility and erasure by others adversely affects bi individuals and that is illustrated by the high rates of Continued on page 16
Self-Identifying through Sexuality: Reflections On Being… Bisexual? BY ELIZABETH KENDERDINE I don’t spend very much time thinking about how I self-identify based on my sexuality. Perhaps it’s because I’m a lawyer, but when asked, I view sexual orientation based on the facts that are readily available. In other words, I understand that how a person presents is generally how they are perceived, regardless of how that person identifies. I am a 32-year-old woman. I live with another woman. We are not roommates. We are girlfriends or partners. If we decide to get married—a prospect that is far from out of the question—we will be wives, I suppose. We have been together for four years. In other words, we are lesbians. Right? Those who knew me growing up, knew me as straight, then bi-curious, then bisexual, but in relationships with men “HOW A PERSON PRESENTS IS only, and then as bisexual in a relationship with a GENERALLY HOW THEY ARE woman. Perhaps many of these people now believe PERCEIVED, REGARDLESS OF I fall into the bisexuals-phase-leading-toHOW THAT PERSON IDENTIFIES.” ahomosexual and that I am a lesbian. When I’m asked, “So, are you just gay now?” I’ll often respond that, much in the same way Barack Obama is touted as our “first black president,” I am a lesbian. That is to say, without actually comparing race to sexual orientation, that although Obama is both black and white, people almost always categorize him by his father’s race, not his mother’s. He is defined by the part of him that is a minority; and that’s how people tend to define me. It doesn’t really matter if I’m bisexual or lesbian because I’m in a long term relationship with a woman (though it seems completely antithetical to me to identify myself based on the person I’m in a relationship with). Practically speaking, it really only matters what I project to the outside world. I know my own heart and mind. And that heart and mind is in love with a woman. That heart and mind does Continued on page 16 VOLUME 33, NUMBER 14 PAGE 13
firstperson OP ED
Photo by Two Gypsy Hearts Via Creative Commons
How Moveable Feast Helps Marylanders
SPEAKING OUT Moveable Feast delivered 739,123 meals in 2011
BY EMILY SZE
n 1989, a few friends gathered in a Baltimore church basement to cook and package healthy meals to go. The purpose? Provide lifesaving nutrition to people dying from AIDS, who often suffered in rejection and isolation. Working on an initial grant of just $8,000, Moveable Feast was born, subsisting on a mere three employees and serving just ten clients two days per week. Fast forward 22 years: Today, Moveable Feast, now hailing from a new state-of-the-art facility in East Baltimore, serves homebound, lowincome Marylanders living with HIV/AIDS, breast cancer, and other life-threatening conditions. Meals are meticulously designed by a team of three registered dietitians, and prepared in-house by thousands of volunteers, supervised by an experienced kitchen staff. Remarkably, Moveable Feast is the only such meal delivery program in the eastern part of the state of Maryland that provides medically nutritious meals to clients completely free-ofcharge. Living in poverty and often utterly alone, the clients of Moveable Feast often have no one else to depend upon. They are frequently unable to feed themselves—both physically and financially—much less fulfill the nutritional demands of their diseases and maintain quality of life. Last year, Moveable Feast delivered over 534,000 nutritious meals, five days a week, straight to the doorstep of 948 clients living as near as Baltimore City to as far as the Eastern Shore of Maryland. In addition, through partnerships with Baltimore community agencies, Moveable Feast served an additional 204,000 meals to over a thousand Marylanders who are chronically homeless. Over the course of the year, their drivers traversed 75,826 miles—or more than three times the circumference of the planet—in delivering a grand total of 739,123 meals. Yet Moveable Feast does far more than deliver hundreds of thousands of meals each year. In 1997, the People PAGE 14 • JULY 22 - AUGUST 8, 2011
on the Move program was founded to provide transportation to clients— often homeless—to and from medical appointments and social service agencies. In 2003, Moveable Feast added its innovative Culinary Arts and Life Training Skills program, which equipped graduates to enter the work force at a higher than entry-level position. And in 2010, Moveable Feast partnered with There Goes My Hero Foundation to begin providing meals to patients with leukemia. Moveable Feast services span a distance of hundreds of thousands of square miles, achievable through fundraisers, grants, and generous donations. The need for Moveable Feast services continues to grow. Across the nation, Maryland ranks 21st for population size, but 4th among US states for new HIV infections per capita. Fifty-nine percent of HIV-positive Marylanders live in the Baltimore-Towson Metropolitan area. And breast cancer is the most prevalent cancer in the state of Maryland, which ranks eighth in the nation for breast cancer mortality. Over the past two decades, Moveable Feast has become the largest free home delivery meal service in the entire state, propelled by a mission to feed people, fight disease, and foster hope. Yet the organization celebrates not their success, but the success of those they serve. Said Executive Director Thomas Bonderenko, “We celebrate our clients: the thousands of men, women and children who have fought bravely to maintain their quality of life in the face of their suffering, discrimination and needless shame.” n
Sheryl Swoopes, 2008
Our Bi-Phobia Placed on Sheryl Swoopes BY REV. IRENE MONROE
o some in the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer communities (LGBTQ), three-time Olympic gold medalist and three-time MVP of the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) Sheryl Swoopes is a “lie-sexual,” another sister-girl on the “down low” with the incredulous news that she’s now engaged to marry a man. Incurable homophobes—especially of the fundamentalist Christian variety, who peddle their “nurture vs. nature” rhetoric claiming that homosexuality is curable with reparative theories—see Swoopes as the prodigal daughter who has finally found her way home to Jesus. And to many of my heterosexual African American brothers, Chris Unclesho, the man Swoopes is engaged to marry, is the MAN! a bona fide “dyke whisperer” who has turned Swoopes out to the sexual joys of what it is to be with a man.
Swoopes’ news sends seismic shock waves to those of us fighting the demedicalization and de-stigmatization of queer sexualities. And this news sadly proves to folks like Republican presidential hopeful Michele Bachmann, that our continuous struggle for LGBTQ civil rights is nothing more than a politicized hedonistic gay agenda to upend traditional family values. “It is amazing to me that after all the HOOPLA surrounding Sheryl Swoopes ‘coming out’ …. her recent marriage to a MAN get’s virtually no attention. Is she now UN-GAY?… Why is the fact that this woman went through a period of ‘trial’ in her life NOT getting any press? It is obvious that the woman just like every other gay or lesbian man or woman in the world had at that time made a CHOICE to entertain the idea of being with someone of the same gender. Sheryl is just more proof that no one is born gay, it is a learned behavior brought on by BALTIMORE’S GAY LIFE NEWSPAPER
experiences and circumstances in one’s life. I am very happy for Sheryl—but the ‘gay agenda’ driven PRESS can bite it,” an ESPN.com blogger wrote. My head spins at the thought of how Christian “de-gaying” counseling services, like Dr. Marcus Bachmann’s, Michelle Bachmann’s spouse, could politicize Swoopes’ seemingly sexual flip-flopping as their poster-child. In 1997, a pregnant Sheryl Swoopes, promoting a heterosexual face for the WNBA, was the cover-girl for the premiere issue of “Sports Illustrated Women.” At the time Swoopes was married to her male high school sweetheart. In 2005, Swoopes came out as a lesbian, becoming the second in the WNBA, and endorsed the lesbian travel company “Olivia.” She was at that time partnered with Alisa Scott, an assistant coach for the Houston Comets that Sheryl played for from 1997 to 2007. And now, in 2011, she’s with a male. And while many suspect Swoopes has indeed found Jesus in a Bible-thumping homophobic church because there been a lot about God posted on her Facebook (which might explain her flip-flopping) Swoopes has neither renounced homosexuality nor retracted her 2005 “coming out” statements about being a lesbian. “There is nothing I’ve been through in my life that I regret, or that I would go back and change. I feel like everything that happened—personally and professionally—I went through for a reason, and I learned from those things,” Swoopes just recently told ESPN. com reporter Mechelle Voepel. What lies at the center of various reactions to Swoopes’ announcement is not her seemingly duplicitous sexual flip-flopping, but rather our ignorance and phobia about bisexuality that complicated people’s—straight and LGTQ—understanding of the scope of heterosexism. Just lollygagging on the phone last evening to a dear friend, who’s lesbian, about Swoopes, she said: “Well, I kinda could see how a sister might be bisexual, but there’s no such thing as a bisexual brother. Girlfriend, he’s really on the ‘down-low.’”
Bisexuals are an underrepresented, if not invisible, group to those—in both heterosexuals and LGBTQ communities—who can only conceive of a gay/ straight binary paradigm. The Kinsey scale, developed out of Alfred Kinsey’s research on human sexuality in the 40’s and 50’s, explains the fluidity of sexuality ranging from 0 to 6, meaning exclusively heterosexual to exclusively homosexual, respectively, and where a bisexual is 3. Bisexual women are between a rock and a hard place within gay and straight circles. Within bi-phobic lesbian circles, the place of bisexual women within the queer women’s community is sadly still marginal, if not non-existing, and their commitment to feminism is always suspect. Many lesbians believe that any woman who has the ability to sexually love another woman also has a political obligation to identify as lesbian. Others believe that the compulsory nature of heterosexuality in
8:30 pm wednesdays
by Roger Dimick with Prizes and Progressive Jackpot. Proceeds Benefit
Club Hippo, 1 W. Eager St.
“SHERYL IS JUST MORE PROOF THAT NO ONE IS BORN GAY, IT IS A LEARNED BEHAVIOR BROUGHT ON BY EXPERIENCES AND CIRCUMSTANCES IN ONE’S LIFE.” – AN ESPN BLOGGER
our culture precludes all possibilities of women freely choosing a heterosexual relationship. And within homophobic straight circles, the place of bisexual women is a push toward them as devout heterosexual Christians. Who Swoops is partnered with is really none of our business. But this fact is for sure: For those in the straight camp cheering Swoopes for “crossing over” and in the queer camp castigating her for “flip-flopping,” it all signals our biphobia placed Swoopes. n
VOLUME 33, NUMBER 14 PAGE 15
RUTHSTROM from page 13
Building Community Since 1977 The GLCCB is proud to offer a wide range of free and low-cost programs, events, and services to the community. . Unless otherwise noted, all events are held at the GLCCB located at 241 W. Chase Street, Baltimore. For more information please visit www.glccb.org or call 410-837-5445.
PEARLS OF WISDOM (POW)
A coming out/peer support group for ALL womyn of the LBTQ community, engaging in open and confidential discussions on relationships, family, self-identity, coming out, peer relationships, and more. Meets 1st and 3rd Saturdays at 11:00am in room 202 For info contact POW.Lesbian@yahoo.com
GENDER IDENTITY GROUP (GIG)
A support group for transgender, gender queer, and anyone who varies from traditional gender expression. Meets 2nd Saturday at 8:00pm in room 201 For info contact GIG@glccb.org
GIG: Baltimore Trans-Masculine Alliance
WOMEN OF COLOR
A collective group committed to providing a safe, confidential, and supportive space for LBTQ women of all colors. Meets 2nd, 4th, and 5th Thursdays at 7:30pm in room 202 For info contact WOC@glccb.org
A support group for FTMs.
Meets 4th Saturday at 6:00pm in room 202 For more info contact BTMA@glccb.org
A support group for MTFs
WOMEN OUT AND ABOUT
A social group for LBTQ women who want to meet new people while enjoying fun activities.
Meets 4th Saturday at 8:00pm in room 201 For info contact Tranquility@glccb.org
Meets off-site, dates and times vary For info contact BWOAEvents@yahoo.com
A support and resource group for significant others, friends, family, and allies of transgender persons.
Meets 4th Saturday at 8:00pm in room 202
MEN LIKE ME
An open support group for adult men who love other men with the objective of empowering participants to take care of themselves and each other. Topics of discussion include coming out, homophobia, relationships, and more provided in a safe and supportive environment.
HEALTH & WELLNESS PROGRAMS BEGINNERS’ YOGA
Gentle beginners’ yoga with instructor Tim Hurley, RYT. Drop-ins WELCOME!
Meets 2nd and 4th Mondays at 6:00pm in room 201 For info contact MenLikeMe2glccb.org
$9.00 per person, per class EVERY Sunday at 3:30pm in room 201
HIV & SYPHILIS TESTING
Meets EVERY Wednesday at 7:00pm in room 202 For info contact POZMen@glccb.org
EVERY Wednesday from 5:00pm to 8:00pm on 3rd Floor
FREE and confidential testing provided by the Baltimore City Health Dept.
A peer support group for men who are HIV+.
YOUTH & YOUNG ADULT PROGRAM SUFFICIENT AS I AM (SAIM)
A supportive group for youth and young adults 24 years of age and under. Youth are welcome to drop-in and try out this successful long running program that features discussion sessions, special events, guest speakers, and trips. Meets EVERY Saturday at 12:00pm in room 201 For info contact SAIM@glccb.org
LGBTQ centered AA recovery groups, welcoming to all regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. Meets EVERY Monday at 8:30pm, Thursday at 8:30pm, and Saturday at 6:30pm in room 201
COMMUNITY PROGRAMS The GLCCB offers a wide range of community events including art shows, musical performances, variety shows, special events, and projects. For more info visit our website at www.glccb.org or look for separate ads in the Gay Life newspaper.
The GLCCB is the publisher of
The GLCCB is the producer of
AA open meeting focused on sobriety and healthy lifestyle for HIV+ individuals. Meets every Sunday at 6:00pm in room 201 More info at BmoreDave@gmail.com
Men’s Rap group for men in recovery. Meets EVERY Sunday at 11:30am in Room 201
To the outside world, I look and seem gay. In my own private life, I look and seem gay. Furthermore, I have found that I fair much better in a relationship with a woman than with a man. So, if I somehow find myself “on the market” again, I would likely spend much more time pursuing another relationship with a woman than with a man. Those who have known me only since I’ve been PAGE 16 • JULY 22 - AUGUST 8, 2011
ER: The BRC is committed to raising awareness about bisexuality within society at large and to providing resources and support to bi and questioning individuals who need us. We distribute resources such as the anthology “Getting Bi: Voices of Bisexuals Around the World” and brochures about bisexuality. We speak in public forums and at conferences and work in coalition with other lesbian, gay and transgender groups on issues important to our community. Besides being a safe space for bi people, bi community is often the first place that many gay and lesbian people choose to come out within. That may give the appearance that their bisexuality is a phase, but really they are just using the comfort of a very accepting bi community in order to become more comfortable with being gay or lesbian. The BRC is the oldest national bi organization in the U.S., but BiNetUSA and the American Institute of Bisexuality are also working on bi issues with a national focus. Other local communities have bi groups that meet regularly and provide support and social opportunities. (BiResource.net/biresources.shtml)
GL: What is your history with the BRC?
Meets EVERY Tuesday at 7:00pm in room 202
ER: I’ve been involved with bi organizations for about twenty years, and have been active with the BRC for about twelve years, most recently as president of the board for several years.
not foresee any other future than being with that woman. Though I am not naïve enough to think the future may not hold something else, I find other options unimaginable. That’s what love does to you. Could I potentially find myself with a man someday? It doesn’t really matter, right now.
GL: How does the Bisexual Resource Center help bisexuals?
SEXUAL COMPULSIVES ANONYMOUS
Group for individuals recovering from sexual compulsion.
KENDERDINE from page 13
poor physical and mental health issues in our community. I believe that if more bisexuals could feel validated and accepted for their feelings and experiences then those rates would not be so high. We know that coming out helps a person’s mental health tremendously and I want more bi people to feel comfortable enough to come out to more people in their lives.
in my current relationship would likely be quite surprised to hear me call myself bisexual. People have a plethora of beliefs and feelings about bisexuality. My question is: what does it really matter? There will always be people who self-identify as bisexual. Whether they are finding their way to homosexuality, or whether they experiment for a while before returning to heterosexuality, whether they live their entire adult lives in either a same-sex or opposite-sex relationships, but know in their hearts that they could be with someone of the opposite or same sex. Whether they bounce between relationships or sexual encounters with both men and women until the
day they die…What does it really matter? On this day, they identify as bisexual. At this minute, they identify as bisexual. And as such, their sexuality, and they way they choose to self-identify is considered alternative, at best. These people, by being bisexual, for however long they identify that way, are considered “others” by the mainstream, just like gays, lesbians, and transgender individuals. There is a reason that there is a “B” in LGBT. Because people who identify as bisexual are subject to being treated differently. As such they deserve of all of the protections, validation, and comfort that any LGBT organization and community provide. Elizabeth Kenderdine is a lawyer in Baltimore.
GL: What do you want everyone to know about bisexuals/ the bisexual community? ER: The bi community is not some mysterious subculture. We are people who want to be respected and understood for the relationships we have with others. Many of the issues that are important to the gay and lesbian community—fighting DOMA and increasing marriage equality in our country, finally getting DADT removed, passing a trans-inclusive ENDA bill, decreasing bullying in our school systems—are equally important to our community and we are eager to work in coalition to move our country forward in these areas. n Ellyn Ruthstrom is president of the Bisexual Resource Center in Boston. Learn more at BiResource.net. BALTIMORE’S GAY LIFE NEWSPAPER
A Gershwin Celebration: It’s all-Gershwin at the BSO! Broadway hits Porgy and Bess, the “I Got Ryththm” Variations, and Rhapsody in Blue with Terrance Wilson. A concert-long celebration of America’s favorite composer. $25-45. 7:30pm. Baltimore Symphony Orchestra BSOMusic.org EMAIL YOUR EVENT INFO TO CALENDAR@BALTIMOREGAYLIFE.COM
Saturday July 23 Baltimore Frontrunners: Running/walking club for LGBT individuals and friends. Assemble 8:45am, run 9am. Reassemble for brunch 10am. Panera Bread, 3600 Boston St. BaltimoreFrontrunners.org Mobtown Murder Mystery: The world’s first (and perhaps last) live, film-noir-inspired, daytime synchronized swimming extravaganza! July 23, 24 & July 30, 31. $2-10. Druid Hill Park Pool and Patterson Pool Fluidmovement.org Acatemy Awards: The Humane Society of Harford County (HSHC) is rolling out the red carpet for the first ever spectacular cat and kitten adoption event. Noon-4pm. Thru 7/24. The Humane Society of Harford County, 2208 Connolly Rd. Fallston German Festival - Buergerverein: 11th-annual celebration of German culture. 11:30am. $7. Thru 7/24. Maryland State Fairgrounds, Exhibition Hall MD-Germans.org
Youth Poetry Night! BY RACHEL ROTH
The Den, Baltimore’s LGBT youth center, in collaboration with the Taylor-Wilkes Group, are cosponsoring a night of spoken word poetry July 31 at the Spotlighters Theatre. Enjoy creative expression, performed by youth in the community, and hear the words of the next generation. If you are interested in performing at this event, please contact: email@example.com.
EVENT INFO: Sunday July 31, 5pm. FREE. Spotlighters Theatre, 817 St. Paul’s St. 410.752.1225 Spotlighters.org
DATEBOOK Friday July 22 Hairspray: The ultimate Baltimore musical based on the hit movie by the ultimate Baltimore director John Waters comes to Cockpit at Essex Community College. $18-20. Thru 8/2. Community College of Baltimore County Essex, Mainstage Theater, 7201 Rossville Blvd. ccbcmd.edu/cockpit Living Proof: A documentary based on 12 LGBT Baltimore youth perform original material based on their real-life stories. $510. 6pm. The Patterson, 3134 Eastern Ave. CreativeAlliance.org Brian McKnight; Just Me Tour: Multi-platinum, Grammynominated singer Brian McKnight performs new songs from his upcoming album, “Just Me.” $28-68. 8pm. Music Center at Strathmore, 5301 Tuckerman Ln, North Bethesda Strathmore.org Late Night w/ Mickey Mahoney & Catherine Pancake: Filmmaker Mahoney and Baltimorean Pancake present “Traverse City” and the experimental narrative, “The Undergrad,” a gendertwisting parody of “The Graduate.” $5-10. 9pm. The Patterson, 3134 Eastern Ave. CreativeAlliance.org “Gay: Accept Me If You Love Me”: One of Peruvian theater’s longest running performances. This month, Spotlight produces the English-language version with DC actors. $45. 7:30. Thru 7/31. Jewish Community Center, 1529 16th St. NW, Washington, DC. 800.494.TIXS SpotlightComunicaciones.com WWW.BALTIMOREGAYLIFE.COM
Real Players: Black Men at Play: BDSM Leather community member Sir Nagrom Monceaux presents an ongoing series of Demos and Lectures about the BDSM Lifestyle of Men of Color in the Leather community. $15 donation. 7pm. 1122 W. Mosher St. 202.603.8740 firstname.lastname@example.org Gay Military Weekend: Always a favorite summer weekend getaway spot for the LGBT masses of the mid-Atlantic region, Rehoboth’s welcoming local community is ready to open its bars and its beaches to the gay military community for a weekend of relaxation and fun in the sun. Various locations and events. Rehoboth Beach, DE GayMilitaryWeekend.com
Monday July 25 Vancouver Outgames: The second-annual GLISA North America Outgames. Everybody is welcome! Thru 7/31. Vancouver, B.C. Canada, vancouver2011outgames.com
Tuesday July 26 Emmylou Harris with Todd Snider: Celebrated artist, Emmylou Harris performs for one night. $25-75 6pm gates, 7:30pm performance. Pier Six Pavilion, 731 Eastern Ave. 410.783.4189 Tickets.PierSixPavilion.com Rainbow Youth Alliance of Howard County: A support group for LGBTQ youth and allies. 7:30pm. To confirm location, contact: email@example.com PFLAG Summer Social: Chatting, meeting new people, and food to share. 7-9pm. FREE. Towson Unitarian Universalist Church, 1710 Dulaney Valley Rd, Lutherville PFLAG Summer Social: Night Out at the Mystics: vs. the San Antonio Silver Stars. For new and seasoned fans alike, the Mystics offer a fun night of women’s basketball. Night OUT participants will have access to the Acela Lounge for a special gathering. $15. 7pm. Verizon Center, Washington, DC TeamDC.org
Wednesday July 27 BINGO!: Hosted by Roger Dimick. Cash prizes and progressive jackpot, Proceeds benefit GLCCB. 8:30pm. Club Hippo, 1W. Eager St. ClubHippo.com
Resigned to Murder: Opening night of Improv Murder Mysteries - where the audience gets involved in the investigation! Can you reveal the clues? Can you find the suspects? Can you figure out Who Dunnit? $15-18. 8pm. Thru 7/30. Spotlighters Theatre, 817 St. Paul St. Spotlights.org Eclipse! at Club Orpheus: Dance to a mesmerizing light show with video projectors, lasers and strobes. 9pm every Friday. 18+. Club Orpheus, 1003 E. Pratt St. ClubOrpheus.com
Saturday July 30 Award winning performer KJ Denhert in concert: Urban folk jazz singer/guitarist/song writer and lesbian opens for Gregory Porter. $23. 8pm. Rams Head OnStage, 33 West St. Annapolis, 410.268.4545 RamsHeadOnStage.com Baltimore Frontrunners: Running/walking club for LGBT individuals and friends. Assemble 8:45am, run 9am. Reassemble for brunch 10am. Panera Bread, 3600 Boston St. BaltimoreFrontrunners.org Jazz in the Sculpure Garden: Hendrik Meurkens Samba Jazz Quintet: Enjoy the beauty of the BMA’s Sculpture Gardens with a glass of wine, good friends, and cool jazz on a hot summer night. $25-35. 5pm. Baltimore Museum of Art, 10 Art Museum Dr. artbma.org Cyro Baptista & Beat The Donkey: Brazilian percussion giant Cyro Baptista brings his full band Beat The Donkey for an amazing set of brilliant, percussion-led afro/world/jazz/jamfest. $15-20. Doors 7pm. Creative Alliance at the Patterson, 3134 Eastern Ave. CreativeAlliance.org
Sunday July 31 Pioneering Voices - Faith Community Conversation Event: An exhibition of the Pioneering Voices exhibit, followed by a conversation on how communities of faith can better serve the needs of transgender, transsexual, and other gender nonconforming people. 5pm. Contact Bill Palmer at w.j.palmer@ gmail.comor MCC Baltimore, 401 W. Monument St.410-669-6222 Youth Poetry Night: In collaboration with The Taylor-Wilks Group, The Den will be cosponsoring a night of spoken word and creative expression performed by youth in the community. FREE. 5pm. If you interested in performing, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org Spotlighters Theater, 817 St Paul St TheDenBaltimore.org
Wednesday August 3 BINGO!: Hosted by Roger Dimick. Cash prizes and progressive jackpot, Proceeds benefit GLCCB. 8:30pm. Club Hippo, 1W. Eager St. ClubHippo.com Edwin Ortiz Y Su Orquesta La Romana: After 20 years experience in the D.C. salsa scene, Edwin Ortiz and his Orquesta La Romana know how to get a crowd dancing to an addictive beat. Part of the Strathmore Free Outdoor Summer Concert Series, the salsa dura offers hard-charging percussive rhythms and vibrant musical energy. FREE. 7pm. Gudelsky Concert Gazebo 5301 Tuckerman Ln, North Bethesda Strathmore.org Living the Full Rainbow Flag: Meets on the first Wednesday of every month, connecting LGBT members and allies in the UU community who face oppression for supporting full equality. FREE. 7:15pm. For registration information 301.493.8300 or jwilson@ cedarlane.org Cedar Lane UU Church 9601 Cedar Ln, Bethesda
Thursday August 4
Oli Brown Band: Part of the Strathmore Free Outdoor Summer Concert Series, 19-year-old guitar phenom Oli Brown, the 2010 British Blues Awards Male Vocalist of the Year and Young Artist of the Year, “brings a freshness and excitement to every performance and is at the forefront of the UK’s New Blues movement.” FREE. 7pm. Gudelsky Concert Gazebo 5301 Tuckerman Ln, North Bethesda Strathmore.org
Unraveled on the Gravel World Premiere: A Baltimore Playwrights Festival Production. Set in a house at the Jersey shore, the play navigates the haunted relationship between a compulsive hitchhiker and his devoted girlfriend. This original acoustic-rock musical explores how hard it can be to outrun the past. $1620. Thru 8/21. Spotlighters Theatre, 817 St. Paul St. Baltimore Spotlighters.org
Thursday July 28
Hairspray: Annapolis Summer Garden Theatre closes its 2011 season with the Baltimore-based, Tony-Award-winning hit. $18. 8:30pm. Thursday-Sunday. Thru 9/4. Annapolis Summer Garden Theatre,104 Cathedral St. Annapolis SummerGarden.com/Hairspray
20th Anniversary Pride Festival of Central PA: The Pride Festival of Central PA promotes awareness of and showcases organizations. Thru 7/30. Harrisburg, Pa, PrideOfCentralPA.org.
Friday July 29 Pittsburg Black Pride: July 29-31, Pittsburg, PA. 412.512.9943. PittsburghBlackPride.com
For additional details and more events, please visit the Gay Life calendar online at BaltimoreGayLife.com/Events Compiled by Rachel Roth VOLUME 33, NUMBER 14 PAGE 17
afterhours HUNTER ON THE PROWL
Alexis Mateo of RuPaul’s Drag Race at Club Hippo PHOTOS BY SAMATRA JOHNSON
Lady Lisa’s Drag Stage, July 4th Fun, and More! BY MARK HUNTER
know Baltimore Pride 2011 is over but I would like to let you all know a few things you may not know. Sunday June 19 was the Festival at Druid Hill Park. The drag stage started at noonish and ended around 5:00 p.m. The MC’s for the day were Tia Chambers and Shawnna Alexander. There were many performers including our special guest, Mystique Summers from RuPaul’s Drag Race Season 2. The day went off without a hitch. About the half way point, Mr. Rik Newton-Treadway took the microphone to make a very special announcement: From this date forward the drag stage will be named “The Lady Lisa Drag Stage.” With that he asked for Lady Lisa’s Mother, Ms. Verna Gentry, to say a few words. She spoke of how proud she was of what we had done in the memory of her daughter. Please keep a lookout for fundraisers for the Lady Lisa Drag Stage for 2012 by Ada Buffet and friends. Where has this year gone? Here we are already in July! I celebrated July 4 with family and friends by watching PAGE 18 • JULY 22 - AUGUST 8, 2011
the Parade in Dundalk along with the Dundalk Heritage Fair. We all had a blast and enjoyed Dundalk’s fireworks. Friday July 8, PW’s Sports Bar and Grill put on another great Half Time Variety Show hosted by the one and only Ms. Regina Jozet Adams with many performers including Marketta M. Buffett, Onyx D. Pearl, Ashlee Jozet Adams, Rocky, Sasha Jozet Adams, and Diamond D. Bottom. It was a great night for all! Recently “The Triple L” has added a new attraction to the venue: The Male Revue held every Tuesday at 8:00 p.m. I have not seen the show but have seen the “BOYS,” very nice indeed. They have drink specials, happy hour till 10:00 p.m. and no cover. Come check it out! On a personal note, I would like to say Happy Anniversary to Belton & Rich (Rosie) which they celebrated on the 17th. I would also like you all to welcome a new addition to my family: my granddaughter was born on June 8. Please welcome Kaitlyn Alisha Dickens into the world and congratulations to my daughter, Samantha (Hunter) and son-in-law Billy Dickens. Please be safe while you are out and about! Until next time boys & girls, see you when Hunter is on the Prowl! n
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VOLUME 33, NUMBER 14 PAGE 19