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AUGUST 2013

Liberty Press

Volume 19, No. 12 • Editor: Kristi Parker • Contributors: Paul Berge, Dave Brousseau, Nolin Christensen, Greg Fox, Michele Janette, Cassie Lehnherr, Sheryl LeSage, Charlene Lichtenstein, Mama, Audrey McQueen, Dr. Robert N. Minor, Stephanie Mott, Maureen Orth, Jennifer Tidball • Staff Reporters: Helen Barnes, Brian Hansen, Ciara Reid • Contributing Photographers: Alonzo Gault, Charles Gonzales, Stephanie Greene, Brian Hansen, Katy Tompkins • Cover Design: Troy Dilport • Graphic Designer: Troy Dilport • Webmaster: Ren Autrey • Publisher: The Liberty Press, LLC National Advertising Representatives: Rivendell Media (212) 242-96863 Subscriptions are $18/year

The “Liberty Press” and its contents may not be reproduced in any manner, either in whole or in part, without the express written consent of the publisher. All rights reserved. Unsolicited material may not necessarily be acknowledged or returned, is assumed intended for publication unless otherwise stated, and becomes the sole property of the Liberty Press. Letters to the editor and bylined columns reflect the views and opinions of the authors only and are not necessarily those of the Liberty Press, LLC or its staff. The Liberty Press reserves the right to refuse or restrict advertisements at the editor’s discretion. Advertisers and agencies assume liability for claims arising from the content of their ads. Publication of the name, photograph or likeness of any persons, organization or business in articles or advertisements in the Liberty Press in no way indicates or reflects their sexual orientation. First copy free, additional copies may be obtained for a nominal fee from the publisher.

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On the Cover:

Love Wins! Victory at the Supreme Court Page 23

CONTENTS PFLAG SCHOLARSHIP KEEPS Jason Dockins’ legacy alive......................... 8 SPRING AWAKENING - a musical about difficult wisdom - opens at the Crown..........................................................................................9 VISITING ASSISTANT PROFESSOR at K-State earns grant..........................10 KANSAS CITY ACADEMY’S SLOGAN ‘Do Something Different’ rings true.............................................................................................................13 INAUGURAL STATEWIDE TRANSGENDER CONFERENCE breaks new ground in Kansas......................................................................................14 K-STATE WOMEN’S STUDIES FACULTY MEMBER awarded Big 12 Fellowship..................................................................................................17 NEW PET STORE STRIVES to better the lives of pets, owners...................18 KSU NATIONALLY RECOGNIZED for supporting sexuality and gender minorities....................................................................................................25

Regulars OP/ED Editorial cartoon, guest editorial: DOMA Denied!, Comments from the Web................................................................................. 6-7 BOOKENDS Maxie Mainwaring, Lesbian Dilettante and My Brother’s Name...............................................................................................15 TRANS-FORMATIVE SCOTUS, DOMA and Prop 8: Where Do We Go From Here?.....................................................................................16 MINOR DETAILS Now, What Will the Celebration Over ENDA Look Like?................................................................................................20 AUDREY ASKS Dynasty..................................................................................22 LEATHER LIFE Leather Runs..................................................................26 PICTURE PAGE The Store’s Sweet Revue..................................................30

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IN EVERY ISSUE DISTRIBUTION LIST..................... 4 POINTS OF INTEREST................ 12 MAMA KNOWS BEST.................. 21 POLL QUESTION........................ 23 COMICS....................................... 27 AROUND KANSAS...................... 28 CLASSIFIEDS.............................. 29 OUT IN THE STARS.................... 29

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OP/ED

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A Monthly Collection of Opinions and Editorials.

The opinions represented here do not necessarily represent the opinions of the Liberty Press. We reserve the right to edit and cut submissions for space and grammatical content. We want to hear from you! Visit www.libertypress.net to answer our Readers Poll or the question of the month. Send your letters and feedback to editor@libertypress.net.

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AUGUST 2013

DOMA Denied!

S

o something happened a couple of months ago. It might not have changed your life—yet—but it sure as heck did happen. The Supreme Court of the United States, the body we hire to decide what is and is not the law of the land and to rule on what is or is not Constitutional, ruled that the Defense of Marriage Act . . . wasn’t. Those of us who remember gnashing our teeth in frustration when the Clinton administration promoted this stupid piece of *#&$, also remember the clang of the falling dominoes as state after state enshrined similar laws in their own constitutions, Kansas included. It seemed so incongruous in a time when gay and lesbian rights were being acknowledged in more and more situations, but that was the problem. As long as we were committing our unspeakable acts, so to speak, in the smoky back rooms of bars in bad neighborhoods, we were not a threat to anyone’s family values. Social conservatives could point to us and then to their children, and remind little Tommy and Suzie that this was not a life they could possibly want, so they had better straighten up. But when we began living more openly throughout the 80’s and 90’s, we stopped being such an easy target. You can’t claim gay people are all sad, lonely, alcoholic perverts when they wave to you while mowing their lawns, stop and chat while walking their dogs, and generally, somehow, fail to be very much different than any other neighbor. We came out at work, at our fantasy football leagues, and even at church. Most powerful of all, we came out in our families. How can we be vilified as the Terrifying/Disgusting Other when we insist on being there at Thanksgiving dinner, and not being any different than anyone else at the table? And that is the greatest fear, clutched with their dried up claws to their tiny little burntcarbon hearts, that the social conservatives (and many gay activists, truth be told) like to take out and stroke when

By Sheryl LeSage nobody is looking—the fear that we really are no different. We aren’t less happy, we aren’t more druggy, we aren’t any better at serial monogamy than they are. Our kids are not miserable, nor are they any more likely to grow up gay. We’re just . . . people. And given that startling revelation, it was only a matter of time before those dominoes began falling in the other direction. Twenty years ago, it certainly did not seem inevitable. But in hindsight, how could it be otherwise? This has always been a nation that says it values truth and fairness. So how could it allow a law to stand that had unfairness as its stated intent? It could be ignored by the Supreme Court for awhile, and I promise you, they really did not want to touch it (any reasoning adult can see that it was always unconstitutional, but until the tide of popular opinion had turned far enough, ruling that way was going to cause an outcry). But once the individual states began legalizing same-sex marriage, DOMA was doomed. As soon as one state decided to legalize our unions, the “full faith and credit” clause came into play. If something is recognized by the laws of one state, other states have to respect that—they don’t have to change their laws, but they have to acknowledge the legality of the act, whatever it is. But DOMA prevented this from happening. It prevented any state from recognizing marriages performed in other states, but only if they were same-sex. That was never going to stand for very long, and even


FMCC Liberty Ad 8.13:Layout 1 LIBERTY PRESS - IT’S BACK TO SCHOOL TIME!.

AUGUST 2013

usually-conservative judges could see it. So here we are. When that decision was announced, I was working on my computer, pretending I didn’t care. My relationship is real, and it has lasted 17 years without the Supreme Court Seal of Approval. I can’t inherit my partner’s property, of course, and her family could deny me the right to visit her in the hospital if they wished (I would like to think that would not happen, but these people, who say they love their daughter and sister, keep voting for Republicans who make anti-gay rhetoric a central plank in their platforms). We can’t save thousands of dollars per year by filing our taxes jointly (“marriage penalty” my lily white heinie; I’ve been married, and I’ve been single. Filing jointly is a HUGE bennie). There are more than 1,000 rights we are denied because both of us are women. But I don’t spend a lot of time stewing about all that. I just live my life, pay my bills, go to my job, feed my pets, and try to be the best not-wife I can. So I wasn’t glued to the TV. Even so, when the decision was

announced, I have to confess that I may have shouted to Miz Thang in the other room, and I may or may not have shed a tear or two. Only the Kleenex box knows for sure. The official validation doesn’t matter in some ways, but still, to have that evil Act struck down so publicly felt pretty damn good. Has it changed our lives? Not yet. Kansas still has its odious Act on the books, so we won’t be running down to the courthouse any day soon. But the thing about social sea changes is that no petty little state legislature can hold them back. The People have decided, and they did so long before this Court made its announcement. Most Americans simply don’t care, and don’t understand why we can’t get married. And that sentiment is proving stronger than any obstructionist state law. Just this week, a county clerk in Pennsylvania started handing out marriage licenses to same-sex couples who asked. Our marriages are not legal in Pennsylvania, but the clerk said he “wanted to be on the right side of history.” And if that doesn’t bring a tear to your eye, I don’t know what will. l

Comments from the Web

7/22/13

3:53 PM

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IN

JUNK-FOR-JESUS

RUMMAGE SALE AUGUST 2ND • 7 AM-6 PM

Our Fantasy Complex Parking Lot • 3201 S. Hillside If you have items you would like to donate please contact the church office at: 316.267.1852 • Proceeds to benefit FMCC

o mm n e S u r g S Broadway & Pop Music Concert with the FMCC Choir

AUGUST 4TH • 4 PM • FMCC SANCTUARY Love Offering to Benefit FMCC Choir

FREE FAMILY PEACE BBQ & POOL PARTY So much fun last summer... We’re doing it Again!

“Reading the July issue, it was noted there were no articles or comments from you [Kristi Parker]. You are missed without such items, hope all is well and look forward to your next issue.” --Harper, KS

AUGUST 24Th 11 am-3 pm

Win tickets to Melissa Etheridge at www.libertypress.net!

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Rev. Jackie Carter, M.Div.

156 S. Kansas • Wichita, KS 67211 • (316) 267-1852 www.MCCWichita.com • www.GodLovesYouPeriod.com Office Hours: M, W-F 9-12 And by Appointment

Sunday Worship: 10:15 am Fellowship: Following Worship Service


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AUGUST 2013

PFLAG scholarship keeps Jason Dockins’ legacy alive

By Ciara Reid, staff reporter TOPEKA - Katy Tompkins first met Jason Dockins at Best Buy in Manhattan, where she worked as a manager. Dockins applied for a job and was interviewed by Tompkins. She vividly recalls how dynamic he was during their first meeting. “He was one of those dream people,” she says. “His attitude was so positive. Wherever he went, people followed. He didn’t even know the power he had.” O v e r t i m e , To m p k i n s and Dockins became good friends. One characteristic she remembers about him was his sense of activism. “He was such an activist,” she says, explaining how he spoke on behalf of LGBT individuals at a Manhattan Human Rights & Services Board meeting in support of anti-discrimination legislation. He was also a very involved member of the Flint Hills PFLAG chapter. Dockins’ shimmering positivity and zeal for life made

his suicide in August 2008 all the more shocking to friends, family and others who knew him. He was 23. To m p k i n s h a d a l w a y s thought of doing something to honor the good that Dockins had done in his short life, but wasn’t sure how it would manifest. While in law school at Washburn University, Tompkins met Nicole Revenaugh. She shared Dockins’ story with Revenaugh, who suggested they start fundraising. “We bought donuts and sold them to professors, who then distributed them to their classes,” Tompkins says. “The initial goal was to raise a few hundred dollars.” The response far exceeded their expectations - they ended up with $1,500. Tompkins was overwhelmed. “The outpouring of support was incredible,” she says. They presented the money to Sonja Feist, President of PFLAG of Lawrence and Topeka, who suggested that the money be used to start a scholarship in

Dockins’ name. “We were contacted by the Washburn group and told they were raising funds in honor of Jason Dockins,” says Feist. She says when they asked what they would do with the money, she initially thought they would use it to purchase educational material. “When we found out that they were donating almost $1,500, we decided to set up a scholarship in Jason’s name,” she says. Additional funds were donated by PFLAG members. Feist says they used the national PFLAG application form as a template for the Jason Dockins Scholarship forms. PFLAG of Lawrence and Topeka then contacted area high schools to advertise for applicants. “The scholarship was for a person who self-identified as LGBT or as a straight ally,” Feist explains. The applicant had to be a graduating senior in good academic standing, and a resident of Kansas, and had to have been accepted at a college. Their selection criteria included reviewing volunteer activities, school involvement, examples of leadership qualities and what the applicants had done to enhance the lives of LGBT persons in their school or community. Scholarships for $1,000 have been awarded to two

An annual scholarship was made possible by a donation from the Washburn University School of Law, Gay Straight Legal Alliance in memory of Jason Dockins (1985-2008). Photo courtesy of Katy Tompkins

recipients so far: Zack Bomberger of Dwight, Kansas, in 2012; and Timothy Williams of Overland Park, Kansas, in 2013. Bomberger has completed his first year at Kansas State University and is majoring in International Agribusiness. Williams will be attending the University of Missouri-Kansas City in August and is majoring in Biological Sciences. Tompkins hopes to help continue the scholarships for years to come. “It’s a way for Jason to continue to contribute after the tragedy,” Tompkins says. l


AUGUST 2013

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Spring Awakening - a musical about difficult wisdom - opens at the Crown

By Helen Barnes WICHITA - The difficulties of being a teenager in the 1890’s weren’t any different than those experienced by young people today. At least that’s the message of Spring Awakening, the next performance featured at the Crown Uptown Dinner Theatre. This eight-time Tony Award winning musical opens on Aug. 2 and runs through Aug. 31. Spring Awakening is an R-rated “coming of age” story about boarding school kids in Germany. It is an edgy rock-musical with music by Duncan Sheik based on a play written by Frank Wedekind, which he selfpublished in 1891. In 1906, the play opened in Germany, but the New York opening in 1917 was shut down by the censors for its stories about homosexuality, sex, abortion, and other “restricted” subjects. Wedekind got an injunction from the Supreme Court that would allow the play to be performed, but it still closed after one show. Matthew Rumsey, the Crown’s Producing Artistic Director, is amazed that the author brought up such taboo topics during that era: “It blows me away that he had the guts to do that back in the 1800’s.” But, as stated earlier, the play deals with the universal, era-hopping angst that accompanies the difficult transition from teenager into adulthood. This is the time when young people learn about society’s boundaries and then they begin to hunt for the survey stakes. The choices they make can affect the rest of their lives as they a) accept what has been plotted, b) move beyond the restrictions, c) fall in love, or d) even choose to stop living, as one character in the play does. The play explores this rocky terrain with each character. Spring Awakening is controversial. Not just for the stories it reveals, but for the way it is written as well. It is loosely connected through the relationships of the characters, the common ground on which they exist (the boarding school), and their dialogue. The lack of a cohesive structure and occasionally indistinguishable characters is often waved over this play as an aspersion, but I choose to think it is more reflective of what the overarching story is about: the dissembling of youth. Spring Awakening is also courageous, because even though it has been given a sprightly name, it does not provide fairy-tale answers. Ultimately, there really is no way to protect children from the difficult task of getting older. Rumsey added that the cast for this show is the “strongest cast ever.” In fact, he feels that the actors have the perfect parts, as if

they were made to play those roles. He says one performer to watch out for in particular is Brian Muller, who happens to be a NY Equity Actor. This is the first time that the Crown Uptown has hired an Equity actor. Muller will be playing Melchiore. This production will feature choreography by Gigi Gans and costumes by Dora Arbuckle. James Dobinson is the music director for Spring Awakening. Dobinson’s work has been seen on stage, television, and film in New York and his homeland, Australia. Executive chef Kevin

Gillenwater and his culinary team will provide entertainment of a gastronomic kind to accompany the musical. The stage set also looks like it might be stunning, judging by the images on the web. For more information on Spring Awakening, tickets and/or the rest of the Crown Uptown Dinner Theatre 2013 season, see: www.crownuptown.com/. (Because of the mature subjects depicted in Spring Awakening, it is not recommended for audience members 13 years old or younger. Parental guidance is suggested. l

2013-2014

Calendar School of Performing Arts Fall 2013 Sept. 25-29 • “Hunting a Doe”

Welsbacher Theatre

Oct. 10-13 • “The Learned Ladies” Wilner Auditorium

Oct. 17-20 • “Susannah”

Co-directed by Samuel Ramey Miller Concert Hall Sept. 16- Oct. 20 • Samuel Ramey Artist in Residence

Nov. 7-10 • “Guys and Dolls” Wilner Auditorium

Nov. 22-23 • Kansas Dance Festival Wilner Auditorium

Spring 2014 Feb. 2 • Children’s Dance Festival

Wilner Auditorium

Feb. 19-23 • “Everyman” Welsbacher Theatre March 6-9 • “Violet” Wilner Auditorium

March 28-29 • Wichita Contemporary Dance Theatre Miller Concert Hall

April 10-13 • “Die Fledermaus” Miller Concert Hall

May 1-4 • “Chemical Imbalance: A Jekyll & Hyde Play” Wilner Auditorium

Julius Thomas III, WSU & MTW Alum Broadway Performer

(All shows subject to change)

COLLEGE OF FINE ARTS BOX OFFICE

316.978.3233 • www.wichita.edu/fineartsboxoffice Single event tickets on sale three weeks prior to opening.


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Visiting assistant professor at K-State earns grant By Maureen Orth

Fine

AUGUST 2013

MANHATTAN - Leigh Fine, visiting assistant professor at the School of Leadership Studies, has been selected for funding in the 2013 Williams Institute Small Research Grants program. The Williams Institute, an LGBT policy think tank based at the University of California, Los Angeles’ School of Law,

has awarded Fine a $1,395 grant. Fine will use the grant to obtain data and software to analyze the relationship between sexual identity and educational outcomes. Fine’s project was selected from a large pool of applicants from diverse academic backgrounds, including psychology, sociology, social work, public health, law, political science, education,

medicine and American studies. The Williams Institute is dedicated to conducting rigorous, independent research on sexual orientation and gender identity law and public policy. The Williams Institute produces high-quality research with real-world relevance and disseminates it to judges, legislators, policymakers, media and the public. l


AUGUST 2013

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Sunday Worship, 10 AM Vacation Bible School! “Operation Overboard: Diving Deep with God” August 6, 7 & 8 6-8pm each evening

FREE Community Meal Saturday, August 10, 5-6pm

“Holy Conversations” - Faith Dialogue for Adults August 4 - “Trans-formation & Transgender Experiences ” August 11 - “Baptism” August 25 - “Global Justice” Metropolitan Community Church of Topeka 4425 SW 19th Street, Topeka, KS 66604 Phone: 785.272.1442 office@mcctopeka.org www.mcctopeka.org


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New single, Locomotion, by Grenadina now available on Itunes LAWRENCE – On July 2, Grenadina released their first single, Locomotion, off their sophomore EP Get Shallow. The band trekked to Vibe Studios in Cleveland, Ohio in May to begin recording their five-song EP following their highly praised debut, Pretend for Me. After a rapidly successful kick-starter campaign in an effort to fund the album, Grenadina worked at the hands of producer/engineer Johnny Burke to produce their most coagulated material to date. The band also filmed their debut music video for Locomotion with Express Media which will be out Midwest Leather Weekend takes place Oct. 4-6, in late-summer. Get Shallow St. Louis. Photo by Alonzo Gault, Jaymz Sapphire is set to be released in Photography August 2013. locomotion-single/id669193238 w w w. y o u t u b e . c o m / w a t c h www.facebook.com/grenadina ?v=B0ZODIXR36o music youtube.com/GrenadinaTV Now Available on iTunes! itunes.apple.com/us/album/

AUGUST 2013

Psychiatrist/author to speak in Wichita

Midwest Leather Weekend; hot men, fetishes ST. LOUIS - The first weekend in October, will see a huge celebration of leather, kink, fetish and more at the Midwest Leather We e k e n d i n S t . Louis. Centered on two big contests, the weekend will include events, seminars by leading kink specialists and parties for Leatherfolk from around the country. This year the two contests, Midwest Puppy and Mr. Midwest Leather, will be on Saturday night at Bad Dog Bar & Grill. For the first time the two contests will take place before the same panel of judges. The Midwest Puppy Contest is one of the first regional Leather & Rubber Puppy contests and is accredited by International Puppy in Tampa, Fla. Both contests are open to members of the Leather community in 13 Midwestern states; Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Minnesota, Missouri, Michigan, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Ohio and Wisconsin. Vi s i t w w w. M i d w e s t LeatherWeekend.com for more information.

WICHITA - Dr. Loren Olson, psychiatrist and author from Des Moines, will present his book, Finally Out, Letting Go of Living Straight, a Psychiatrist’s Own Story, on Saturday, Aug. 17 at 8pm at First Metropolitan Community Church, 156 S. Kansas. A reception hosted by the Wichita Prime Timers will follow. Not only did Dr. Olson complete medical school, serve four years as a flight surgeon in the U.S. Navy, and embark upon a successful career as a psychiatrist, he also had a

compatible 18-year marriage and raised two daughters with his attorney wife, Lynn, before facing up to a difficult truth about himself: he is gay. With professional insight Olson examines his personal transformation from a “straight” man living in a heterosexual world to a gay man beginning his education anew. He punctuates his story with revealing statistics from his interviews with gay men around the world and established studies on homosexuality, and with surprising historical facts that provide perspective on global cultural norms. To learn more go to: www. FinallyOutBook.com. l


AUGUST 2013

LIBERTY PRESS - IT’S BACK TO SCHOOL TIME!.

Kansas City Academy’s slogan ‘Do Something Different!’ rings true

By Ciara Reid, staff reporter KANSAS CITY - Kansas City Academy (KCA), an independent, private school for grades 6-12 at 79th Street and Main in Kansas City, Missouri, is a school that has always marched to a different beat since its inception in 1984. The school’s philosophy encourages a safe and caring community of co-learners, a creative, flexible, and intellectually stimulating learning environment, and focuses on heightening students’ critical thinking skills and a passion for social justice. Notably, interreligious dialogue and understanding are encouraged – what’s not to like about that? Unique programs and initiatives at KCA include United Nations Commission on the Status of Women in New York City, I love Mountains Rally in Kentucky, and the School of the Americas Watch. On-site initiatives include the school garden and healthy lunch and culinary program, solar power installations, bicycle program, and classes on yoga and stress management. Students are heavily involved in the programs, and even have influential roles as board members, faculty hiring committees, and policy editors. The success of these programs and initiatives can largely be credited to KCA’s focus on encouraging students’ individuality and creativity. “Individuality and creativity are built-in components of the Expeditionary Learning curriculum and of our school philosophy statement,” says Kathy Baldwin-Heitman, principal of the school. “We hosted a KC Equal benefit in our theater last school year that KCA students were invited to attend,” she says. “Each class also plans two allschool activities during the year that celebrate collaboration, uniqueness and diversity.” Some of those student organized events, says Baldwin-Heitman, have included a talent show, an international home-made food

tasting, karaoke, fashion shows with student-created garments, and guest speakers such as Rajiv Chilaka, CEO of Green Gold Animation. Baldwin-Heitman says KCA also encourages students to express themselves in the way they dress, as long as it is respectful and appropriate. The school does not currently have a gay-straight alliance or LGBT club; Baldwin-Heitman says the school encourages celebration of all differences. However, if the students chose to launch such a group, they would fully support the program. Stephanie Greene, a counselor at KCA, says that this past May during graduation, senior JJ Sears spoke regarding her experience at KCA. “JJ is biologically male and presents as female,” Greene says. “Incidentally, JJ was chosen by the student body as Prom Queen during her junior year.” Greene says that in her graduation speech JJ stated, “We all have the right to be who we are and do what we want. It’s our life. You can’t let other people’s opinions change how you feel and who you are. I do me all day, every day. I’ve never let anyone or anything change who I am. I’ve remained myself through all the hardships, all the obstacles I’ve had to climb. I’ve never conformed to please anyone because that’s not who I am. I want to thank Kansas City Academy for letting me grow, flourish, and embracing me as I am. Without KCA I don’t know if I would have made it.” Baldwin-Heitman says KCA’s school culture is one of acceptance and respect, an experiential learning environment, and a place where students are encouraged to think critically and engage in active, open communication. “Progressive? Maybe,” she says. “A place to develop strong roots and take risks? Absolutely!” l For more information: Kansas City Academy 7933 Main, Kansas City, MO. 64114 816.444.5225 www.KCacademy.org

Right: JJ Sears, who is biologically male and presents as female, celebrates being chosen Prom Queen. Photo courtesy of Stephanie Greene

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AUGUST 2013

Inaugural statewide transgender conference breaks new ground in Kansas

By Ciara Reid, staff reporter LAWRENCE - Other states have had annual transgender conferences for years, and this fall, Kansas will join this list, as it will host TransKans - the first ever transgender conference in Kansas to be held in Lawrence, Sept. 6-8 at the Bert Nash Community Mental Health Center, 200 Maine. Stephanie Mott, executive director of the Kansas Statewide Transgender

Education Project (K-STEP), has been researching and planning for the conference for more than two years. While details are still being finalized, Mott says there will be three to four tracks running simultaneously on Saturday, Sept. 7, with two morning sessions and two afternoon sessions on each track. “We will be holding about 18 different workshops throughout the day on Saturday,” she says.

Keynote speaker Nathan Phelps, son of infamous Pastor Fred Phelps of the Westboro Baptist Church, will address attendees at a banquet at the Holiday Inn Regency Ballroom Sept. 7. “He is a very powerful LBGT advocate,” Mott says. After leaving his home at midnight on his 18th birthday, Phelps moved to California and started a new life. He has recently begun to speak about

his experiences, including vocalizing the dangers of religion and child abuse. He is writing a book about his life, which will also be the topic of a soon-to-bereleased documentary. The topics of the conference tracks are incredibly diverse and educational – throughout the three-day conference, attendees can learn about the political, religious, sociological, legal, and continued on page 26

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AUGUST 2013

By Cassie Lehnherr

A

couple of Bookends ago, I spoke of my relief upon discovering fresh, new women authors in non-fiction. My sentiments are the same this issue, except I chose two works of fiction by two outstanding, young female writers. There isn’t much more I love than a good story to beat the heat. Well, and air conditioning. Acclaimed author Monica Nolan’s Maxie Mainwaring, Lesbian Dilettante (Kensington, $15) is the same campy, pulp tale the author has received critical admiration for. “Madcap” Maxie Mainwaring is a spoiled socialite living a gay life in Bay City, with contributions from her wealthy parents’ very generous allowance. She is perfectly content with her trust fund, internship at a gossip rag and living with her longtime girlfriend, Pam. (Though Maxie is hardly faithful.) However, Maxie’s life takes an abrupt turn when she is found in a rather compromising position

LIBERTY PRESS - IT’S BACK TO SCHOOL TIME!.

with another female blueblood at the Daughters of the American Pioneers Luncheon. Her mother gives her an ultimatum - move back home or be cut off financially. Maxie chooses the latter, and what follows is a hilarious and over-the-top story that is never dry nor predictable. With the help of a group of eclectic and eccentric friends, Maxie proves she is more than just a charismatic dilettante. Working everywhere from a school cafeteria to helping her local watering hole fight off undesirables, Maxie learns to fend for herself, and even finds love. While nothing goes smoothly and she gets in plenty of trouble along the way, the reader cannot help but root for Maxie Mainwaring. M y B r o t h e r ’s N a m e (Scarletta Press, $14.95) by Laura Krughoff was a very dark read. The novel follows Jane and her older brother John, who move out on their own together after one of John’s many stays at a psychiatric hospital to treat his many mental illnesses; schizophrenia being the biggest hindrance to his functionality. Jane has always idolized John and the only way she knows how to help him - is to be him. Jane assumes John’s identity and takes on jobs, friendships and romances as her brother. The siblings have a very twisted

sense of logic; Jane hopes to save John from an even deeper downward spiral by living as him and returning to him at night to tell him all about it. They

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both hope John will remember who he once was and beat his illnesses. However, Jane soon begins to identify more with the faux version of herself than the woman she had always been. Chaos arises when John demands Jane let go of certain aspects of her faux life and they discover their personal boundaries and limits and discover their needs to control one another. Through nuanced language, intense dialog and references to 1990s metal and industrial music (this stuck out to me-I’m a sucker for the angst of 90s music), this novel flows so well that the reader can actually feel Jane’s metamorphosis. Laura Krughoff has written a gritty, bold and honest portrayal of mental illness and gender identity. While she has been published in many prestigious American and Canadian publications, this is her debut novel. There are more great things to come from this brilliant, new talent. l

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SCOTUS, DOMA and Prop 8: Where Do We Go From Here?

I

t took about an hour after SCOTUS announced the rulings before I started getting phone calls from the local media. They wanted to know what I thought about the Supreme Court of the United States ruling that section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act the part of DOMA that denied equality with respect to federal benefits to legally married LGBT couples - was unconstitutional. They wanted to know what it means to me that Prop 8 was struck down. They wanted to know what that means for

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people in states where marriage equality is still being denied. In states, like mine, where there are constitutional amendments banning marriage equality. They wanted to know, “Where do we go from here?” In the next 24 I must have said the words marriage equality more than 100 times - in half a dozen interviews, and at the rally we held that evening at the statehouse. The total number of times my words were quoted were many. One journalist quoted my words as marriage equality. Every other time, every other journalist, wrote same-sex marriage. This unfortunate truth speaks

AUGUST 2013

volumes to me about where we are post-DOMA (section 3) and sans Prop 8. It tells me everything I need to know when it comes to my reaction. It tells me everything I need to know about where we go from here. I have watched the debate of marriage equality from afar. It has not been a debate to which transgender people have often been invited. That notwithstanding, I have been planning my wedding, dreaming about my wedding dress, and wondering about the (everchanging) guest list since I was a little girl who happened to live as a little boy. I am an openly transsexual woman who lives 2.6 miles from Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka, Kansas. I felt great pride on the day that Fred Phelps sent his followers on a 75mile trip to the north, just so they could picket the library in Seneca where I was making a presentation on transgender and faith. I chose that particular library for a presentation in response to an hour-long sermon by New Hope Baptist Church Pastor, Curtis Knapp, where he called for the government to execute gays. My purpose in going to Seneca was not to confront the pastor or to condemn his message. My purpose was to do my part to present a different message. A message of love. This is the world in which so many of us live. It is the world where a journalist can hear someone say marriage equality and have it equate in their mind to same-sex marriage. It is a world where I can say social justice and equality for all, and too many people still hear gay rights and special rights. However, there is nothing in that truth that diminishes the other truth. Prop 8 is gone.

Section three of DOMA is gone. What does that mean to me? It means hope. It means that there is reason to believe that in my lifetime, all people will be able to marry the person they love, even in Kansas. It means that the Supreme Court of the United States of America said something very important, very clearly - LGBT relationships are valid. These are words that can never be unspoken. Americans will never again live in a place where that truth can be untold. What does it mean to me? It means that we have rounded third and we are heading for home. It means that there is no force on earth capable of stopping the inevitable. It means that denial and delusion are being melted away like pieces of ice in a toxic sea of hate. Where do we go from here? We go to work. There is much to be done and too many people still suffer. Until the day comes when no one suffers just for being lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender; we go to work. Just like we went to work yesterday. And the day before that. And the day before that. They wanted to know what I thought about the Supreme Court of the United States ruling that section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act was unconstitutional. They wanted to know what it means to me that Prop 8 was struck down. It means that there will be a time in the not-so-distant future when a person can say marriage equality, and it will be for everyone. l Stephanie Mott is a transgender woman from Topeka. She is the executive director of the Kansas Statewide Transgender Education Project and state chair of the Kansas Equality Coalition. Reach her at stephanieequality@yahoo.com.

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AUGUST 2013

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K-State Women’s Studies faculty member awarded Big 12 Fellowship By Michele Janette MANHATTAN - Assistant professor Tushabe Wa Tushabe has been awarded a Big 12 Fellowship to visit the University of Texas, Austin to share her research on historical and current constructions of homosexuality, and to develop an international conference and corresponding co-edited anthology on African sexualities. Tushabe will present a portion of her research in a public forum open to the University of Texas campus community. Tushabe’s work explores the assumption that sexuality is a characteristic of all human beings and, indeed, has become a “fundamental aspect of individual identity” to the extent that it now defines a person’s essence. The presentation is part of Tushabe’s book, Decolonizing Homosexuality in Uganda.

Tushabe and colleagues at the University of Texas also will plan an upcoming conference and resulting anthology, provisionally titled, “Local Voices and International Movements for Sexual Freedoms in Africa.” The conference and anthology will examine the ongoing legislative proposals that recriminalize homosexuality in African postcolonial states. For instance, Uganda’s parliament introduced Bill No. 18 in 2009, which criminalizes a person who knows about and does not report to the state police anyone who identifies as gay, lesbian or transgender. The bill seeks to institutionalize a death penalty for gays, lesbians and transgender people. Nigeria, Senegal, Cameron, Rwanda, Zimbabwe and Malawi have similar draconian laws. l

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AUGUST 2013

New pet store strives to better the lives of pets, owners

By Brian Hansen WICHITA - Earthwise Pet Supply in Wichita strives to better the lives of pets and their owners through proper education, exceptional customer service, all natural products and green business practices. The first Midwest location of the nationwide franchise opened on

327 N. Hillside in Wichita at the end of May. The pet supply store offers nutritional pet food as well as grooming and much more. Earthwise was opened by Kim Bonnesen and Lisa Obregon, who have been together for over six years. For many years, the couple has wanted to start a business together and decided


AUGUST 2013

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on opening a franchise, but was unsure of the company. “[A pet store] seemed like a natural fit because we both have a love for animals,” said Bonnesen. After deciding on the brand, Bonnesen and Obregon worked hard for over a year to get the business up and running. The couple researched pet food products and the importance of nutrition in household animals to provide the best products for their customers. Upon walking in, customers are surrounded by a variety of pet products including toys, leashes, collars, and top level pet beds. But what the business specializes in is high-quality pet food. Therefore, the store carries all natural, humangrade pet food brands; including natural dog food, treats, and raw diets. Both Bonnesen and Obregon are very knowledgeable in pet nutrition and well educated in the quality food the store carries, enabling them to help pet owners determine what diets would be best for their pets. “The store caters equally to dogs and cats,” said the owners, and they plan to begin carrying products for birds and other small animals. Although Earthwise Pet Supply is a franchise, each store is independently owned and operated. What this means for Bonnesen and Obregon is the products they carry in their store are decided upon by their customers. They strive to cater to what their customers want while also helping the pet owners become educated in better pet nutrition. Another area in which the store takes pride is the manufacturing companies they decide to work with. Bonnesen and Obregon choose to work with American-based small businesses, many located in the state of Kansas. The store also chooses to work with environmentally-friendly companies. The store has an on-staff groomer ready to pamper clients’ pets as well as self-grooming stations for those needing to bathe their dogs or cats. The store also hosts monthly pet rescue events with local rescue groups. Visit its Facebook page to stay up-to-date on future events and in-store happenings. (www.facebook.com/ EarthwisePetWichita) Ultimately, Bonnesen and Obregon care about a quality life for the pets that come through their store. “We want to help owners extend the lives of their pets,” say the owners. l Pictured: Bonnesen, left, and Obregon. Photo by Brian Hansen

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Minor

Details By Bob Minor

Now, What Will the Celebration Over ENDA Look Like?

W

hat a relief it was to hear that the U.S. Supreme Court had overturned Section 3 of the “Defense of Marriage Act” that was signed into law by centrist Democrat Bill Clinton in 1996. No longer can the federal government define marriage as exclusively heterosexual. Now it’s back to the states, for this Court is for nothing if it isn’t states’ rights. The President can decide if federal marriage benefits are defined by the definition of marriage in the state one lives or the state one is married in, but the battle for full marriage equality depends upon politics at those state levels and some long, drawnout court cases that must begin soon with same-sex couples suing for recognition in their non-accepting home states. One legal hurdle is gone, and the celebrations all around the nation were exuberant, maybe overly. There should be relief that on the way to full human rights the law has taken this turn even as the right-wing flails in reaction and there’s so much more to do. The push for marriage all began with the hope embedded in Hawaii’s surprising legalization of marriage equality in 1993. Since then, the majority of

the resources of the LGBT community and its allies have been focused upon marriage equality. In addition to this lengthy court case, 13 states have since changed their laws with one or two more following soon. The concentration of resources on marriage equality isn’t surprising because for those in LGBT communities who are privileged not to have to worry about their jobs and wealth - those who control the most resources - this is the cause that touches most immediately upon their self-interest. But in the 29 states where someone can be fired for being gay and the 34 for being transgender, those not so privileged experience more life or death issues. The more basic issues of jobs, careers, and income loom large. As Harvard professor and author of A Queer History of the United States, Michael Bronski told Salon.com: “All of these probably white, probably uppermiddle-class people who’ve been fighting for marriage because it’s a good fight, will they be as willing to give $500 a year to Lambda [Legal] to fight trans youth harassed by police? We’re dealing with how people’s politics come out of

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their experiences. “A white middle-class couple living in the suburbs of Illinois may not have much desire to think about transgender youth, possibly of color, living in New York City or San Francisco. Isn’t that the job of the national organizations to convince people that this is as important as the issue of same-sex marriage?” Journalist-filmmaker David France, known for his documentary chronicling activism during the AIDS crisis, How to Survive a Plague, was even more concerned: “This is a deeply conservative victory and, yes, a too expensive one, given what our leaders have let slide in recent years. Marriage won’t stop the runaway HIV epidemic among our young. It won’t stop religious hatred, sexual assaults, reparative therapy crimes, bullying, Mormons, Boy Scouts or popes. “Although I am myself gaymarried, and while I do enjoy being endorsed by a SCOTUS majority, even a slim one, I’ve been utterly dumbstruck watching every resource at the community’s disposal channeled into this one optional and limited middle-class goal. “We used to be revolutionaries. We once were outlaws. And now: betrothed? If we settle for this, we let the whole world down.” For those not privileged, news that the federal Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) had obtained its fiftieth U.S. Senate sponsor and was approved by the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee by a 15-7 bipartisan vote on July 10, could have raised the hope of some economic security. But even FOX and CNN gave no coverage to the furthest ENDA had advanced in the 17 years since it was first introduced to Congress. And one wonders how many in the LGBT community even know ENDA is a cause. Even in the former slave state of Missouri, the state’s senate ended its session by, for the first time, passing the Missouri Nondiscrimination Act. The fight for this first step by Missouri’s LGBT political advocacy group, PROMO, has been long and grueling, but it hasn’t received anything like the

AUGUST 2013

amount of attention and financial support that has left Missouri to promote the marriage cause. It’s not unusual for those in any demographic who have risen in a class system above overt discrimination to forget what it’s still like for the majority. It’s not unusual for them even to deny the discrimination others experience, refuse to believe that much discrimination still exists, or blame those who experience it as bringing it on themselves. Just think Clarence Thomas. But times like these are also tests as to whether any community of people actually exists. Is the category being used to lump people together a fiction? Or is economic class what really and primarily divides Americans from one another when it comes down to it? The pursuit of marriage equality without the same effort invested toward ending workplace and accommodation discrimination confirms the claims of many activists that there really is nothing we can call the LGBT community. There are the elite and the rest, different generations, L’s, G’s, B’s, T’s and others, as well as many other divisions whose identities are based upon their personal interests. Even the earliest versions of ENDA did not include provisions to protect transgender people. It was added in 2007, but Barney Frank then believed transgender people should be sacrificed to make its passage more successful, thereby riling many activists. Socio-economic class is the major divider in Capitalist America. So we’ll see how it plays out in the so-called LGBT community. But for those who really want permanent equality for all, it can’t be a barrier. “People shouldn’t consider themselves progressive just because they support their own rights,” said veteran LGBT activist Allen Roskoff. “I’m tired of people saying they’re progressive because they just support their own rights more than equity for all.” l 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 and Gay & Healthy in a Sick Society. Contact him at www.FairnessProject. org.


AUGUST 2013

D

ear Mama, I am feeling so frustrated with things in my life. I hate the city I live in, not happy with my job, and not happy with most people I hang around. What should I do? Not signed Well it sounds like you’re just not happy. I suggest making some changes to your life. Get a new job, friends, and move to a different city. Good God, really you had to ask me advice on this?! It is as plain as the nose on your face. Let me call U-Haul for you! Someone take me for a beer. Mama, I am really having a hard time finding anyone to go out on a date. The ones I do talk to want sex or just play games and never want to even go out. What do you suggest I do? Lonely Hearts Club I suggest take up sewing or a hobby. How the hell should I know? I am a widow for over 20 years now and have never been on a date since my husband passed. I believe all the decent partners are taken or priests or they are lying to the rest of us! Get a blow-up doll. Vinton, bring the truck around we’re

LIBERTY PRESS - IT’S BACK TO SCHOOL TIME!.

going to the Bigger Jigger! Ms. Mama, Why would a 50-year-old woman want to marry a man in his 90’s? Puzzled Metro Girl Money!! It sure the heck ain’t sex! It has to be money or for the company. I cannot even imagine it. That would be like me wanting to marry that old fart Beulah! Can you image us two naked? Not a big enough iron to get all those wrinkles out! Hey Mama, How would you solve our current health insurance crisis? You’re in good hands I would make all the politicians, insurance reps, doctors and the drug company bigwigs get very ill really fast and make them wait for a long time before seeing a physician or getting any meds, then I would bill the hell out of them, just to scare the holy crap out of each of them. Maybe then they would come up with a good solution! I call it MamaCare! Thank you for the questions Kansas! Hope you all had a great summer! l Have a question for Mama? E-mail MamaTHarper@aol.com or friend Thelma Harper on Facebook.

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H

ello once again Kansas! I missed you all last month, but I am back with another interview for August! Since summer is nearing an end I have a HOT interview for you all. This month we have the stunning, sexy and amazing Dynasty to get to know. So enough with my lame catchphrases let’s meet Dynasty! Audrey McQueen: Hey Dynasty, how are you today? Thanks for doing this column with me! Dynasty: You’re welcome Audi, I’m excited! First off, I wanna say, “Hafa Adai” to all my Pacific Islanders. AM: My first question for you is where did you get your drag name? D: Dynasty may sound like an erotic name but it was really hard trying to come up with one. So my best straight friend from high school threw me a few “dynamic, die nasty, explosion,” and then he shouted, “How ‘bout Dynasty?” And that’s how my alter ego Miss Dynasty aka Twinkies was born. AM: I miss Twinkes! Who were and are your biggest inspirations for drag? D: My biggest inspirations are first and foremost my drag mother Adina Ronee, Ladiesman, Erotica, Thug

AUGUST 2013

from your “real self?” D: What makes me different from my real self is I come from not having much to making it happen with what I got. I’m the type of person who would give it if others don’t have it. I’m confident not cocky. I’m just me inside and out.

Dynasty Passion, Ivory James, Mr. Pleasure, Rosalyn, Capt’n, Lexus Millian, Tyreese, Brown Sugar, MacKenzie, Mia Adams, Tatiannia, Rachael Moore, and Neela Downes. These are the people who I watch and inspire me and have helped me become the entertainer I am today! AM: Wow, those are some of the same inspirations I have! What former titles and awards do you have? D: I’m a former Miss Xcalibur and Miss Kansas International Plus both in 2009! AM: Dang look at you! What made you want to do drag? D: I started doing drag because I was actually a fan of Ladiesman. She really encouraged me to come out and try it. So the next week I did the Thursday night Brown Sugar talent show and let me tell you! I was that drag queen with no makeup just eye liner, no titties, no heels, I had high-top tennis shoes, booty shorts with my duct tape showing, and a

black t-shirt doing a guy song. I was spotted by three amazing girls - Rosalyn, Ivory James and Erotica - and they said, “What’s your name, girl? We gonna get you together!” So I want to thank these amazing people. AM: Amazing! What was your best memory in drag or life? D: The most memorable time from doing drag would have to be working with some great entertainers and the people I have met through the years and till this day they have watched me grow into something way bigger than what I was expecting. I never knew I would come this far and I’m still growing and learning. AM: What is your favorite quote or motto? D: My motto would have to be - don’t give up on a dream, go with the flow and cherish all the good things that come your way. AM: Cool!! You’re awesome! What makes Dynasty different

AM: You are one of the most sincere people I have met!!! Do you have any advice for anyone who would like to do what we do? D: My advice to the people who wanna do drag . . . do it for you and nobody else. Practice makes perfect. Love it or hate it drag is an art!! You never know how far it will take you. Embrace the people around you because you could learn a thing or two!! AM: Where can we see you perform? D: You can see me every Monday night with Ladiesman and Apollo at the South 40! AM: Is there anything you would like to say before we end this? D: As this comes to a close, I wanna give a big shout out to my fans. Thank you for following my dream and always being there. I’m still standing. Thank you Audrey from the bottom of my heart!! Thank you so much Dynasty for doing this interview. You are such a big inspiration to me and many other queens around the state! Make sure you go see Dynasty on Monday at the South Forty at 11pm and go like my Facebook page www.facebook. com/audreyasks. This has been what Audrey Asked - see you at pride next month!! l


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In historic rulings, court rejects discrimination against same-sex couples

By Kristi Parker

I

n two profoundly important rulings on Wednesday, June 26, the U.S. Supreme Court declared Section 3 of the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) to be unconstitutional, and also found that the proponents of California’s discriminatory Proposition 8 lacked legal standing to appeal a lower court ruling striking down the amendment. As the news spread the day before that the rulings would be coming down the next day, the Kansas Equality Coalition began planning rallies in cities across the state. With sites chosen in Hutchinson, Kansas City, Lawrence, Salina, Manhattan, Dodge City, Topeka and Wichita, communities all gathered at 5:30pm in what turned out to be rallies of celebration. About 75 people turned out in Wichita carrying signs and flags and wearing jubilant expressions. Thomas Witt, executive director of the Kansas Equality Coalition, spoke as well as activist Jason Dilts and Pastor Jackie Carter of First Metropolitan Community Church. Witt told the audience that there were many aspects of the rulings’ impact that need to be ironed out over the coming months. Lambda Legal issued the following statement from Legal Director Jon Davidson: “Two ugly chapters in the history of our nation and of California are finally over. DOMA’s core has been struck down, and the California Constitution will no longer compel unequal treatment of same-sex couples and their families. “This is a huge victory for married same-sex couples and their families because it will affect almost every facet of life from health care to retirement to taxes. “Key details remain to be worked out over the coming months, including the implications for legally married same-sex couples living in states

that deny their true marital status. Lambda Legal and our sister organizations will work with Obama Administration officials and will continue to pursue legal and administrative actions that may help to clarify these matters and to implement both of today’s judgments against discrimination.” Kansas, of course, is one of the states with a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. Lambda Legal has Legal Help Desk staff available to help answer questions married samesex couples have about how these rulings affect them. Visit: lambdalegal.org/help or call 866-542-8336. l

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Jason Dilts, left, speaks to Pat Munz, treasurer of Wichita Pride, during the rally in Old Town Square in Wichita. Dilts later spoke to the crowd. Photo by Kristi Parker

“I applaud the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act. This was discrimination enshrined in law. It treated loving, committed gay and lesbian couples as a separate and lesser class of people. The Supreme Court has righted that wrong, and our country is better off for it. We are a people who declared that we are all created equal – and the love we commit to one another must be equal as well.” --President Barack Obama “The Department of Defense welcomes the Supreme Court’s decision today on the Defense of Marriage Act. The department will immediately begin the process of implementing the Supreme Court’s decision in consultation with the Department of Justice and other executive branch agencies. The Department of Defense intends to make the same benefits available to all military spouses -- regardless of sexual orientation -- as soon as possible. That is now the law and it is the right thing to do.” -- Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel “I applaud today’s Supreme Court decision in United States v. Windsor holding that the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is unconstitutional. This discriminatory law denied thousands of legally married same-sex couples many important federal benefits, including immigration benefits. I am pleased the Court agreed with the Administration’s position that DOMA’s restrictions violate the Constitution. Working with our federal partners, including the Department of Justice, we will implement today’s decision so that all married couples will be treated equally and fairly in the administration of our immigration laws.” --Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano


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AUGUST 2013


AUGUST 2013

LIBERTY PRESS - IT’S BACK TO SCHOOL TIME!.

KSU nationally recognized for supporting sexuality and gender minorities

By Jennifer Tidball MANHATTAN - Kansas State University can continue taking pride in its efforts to reach lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender individuals on campus. The university has received 4.5 stars out of 5 stars in the Campus Pride Index rating for 2013-2014. The rating is a result of collaboration among multiple campus organizations,

including the university’s LGBT Resource Center, housing and dining services, the Union Program Council and the Student Governing Association, said Brandon Haddock, student services coordinator at the LGBT Resource Center. “It has been a major goal to make this a collaborative campus effort to educate our students and to make our campus a safe and affirming place for those who are of different sexualities or gender identities,” said Haddock, who is also a doctoral student in geography. The Campus Pride Index is a tool that helps campuses learn ways to improve LGBT campus life and become more inclusive, welcoming and respectful of LGBT people. Campus Pride is an organization for student leaders and campus groups working to create a safer college environment. Since opening in fall 2010, KSU’s LGBT Resource Center

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“We have come such a long way, from 1.5 stars in 2009 to 4.5 stars this year,” said Haddock. “This improvement says that as a campus we are working together to meet the needs of all of our students. The work is not finished and we must make sure that we continue to set our goals for equality even higher for our campus.” l


PAGE 26 Trans Conference continued from page 14

medical world of a transgender person. Speakers at the TransKans conference will be Thomas Witt, executive director of the Kansas Equality Coalition; Sue Gerth, president of the Flint Hills chapter of PFLAG; Barbara Greathouse, owner of Barbara’s Electrology Clinic; and Tami Albin, undergraduate instruction and outreach librarian, Anschutz Library, at the University of Kansas. “The line-up is starting to look very nice,” Mott says. Additional speakers include

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Leather Life By Nolin Christensen aka Master C

Nate Phelps, son of Fred Phelps, will give the keynote address at the Conference’s Saturday night banquet.

For more information: www.k-step.org www.transkansas.com natephelps.com Registration begins at 3pm on Friday, Sept. 6 at the Bert Nash Community Mental Health Center, 200 Maine, Lawrence Banquet/Keynote Speaker only - $25 (Student $20) Conference only - $25 (Student $20) Banquet/Keynote Speaker and Conference - $45 (Student $35) (Students must have a valid ID) Carol Jolly, a clinical social worker at Shadow Woods Clinical Associates; Caroline Gibbs of the Transgender Institute; David Brown, managing attorney of the Law Office of David J. Brown; Laura Arrowsmith, practicing physician and board member of the National Center for Transgender Equality; Donna Ross, pastor of Zion United Church of Christ in St. Joseph, Missouri; and Scott Criqui, human resources manager at Trinity In-Home Care, who will speak about transgender issues in the workplace. Melissa Davison, a licensed masters social worker who is currently employed at the Robert J. Dole VA Medical Center in Wichita, will host a session on healthcare for transgendered veterans. l

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This column is dedicated to explaining to others what the Leather lifestyle is about and what we do.

Leather Runs

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couple things have occurred recently that made me realize I really miss the “good ol’ days.” A couple of months ago the boys and I went on a Leather run in St Louis. I had forgotten how much booze is consumed on a run! Then a few weeks ago one of our members shared a video about the Satyrs of Los Angeles.

They are the oldest continuous gay club in America. The video highlighted the Satyrs’ 50 years (they will be 60 next year) and their famous leather runs. Leather runs were formed by the Satyrs and all gay Leather and biker clubs adopted them. It was a way for the members to get together without police harassment and to meet other like-minded folks. They would get on their bikes and head out to a campsite out in the middle of nowhere. They would have food, booze, a good time and sex, sex, sex everywhere. Every group did this for many years until after Stonewall and the coming of acceptance of gays in America. Leather runs are still done today, but instead of going out to some campground, they are now held in hotel banquet halls. Some things from the old runs still exist at some of the runs, many other aspects do not. The booze still flows, but the free-will sex has greatly diminished. The AIDS epidemic brought that part to a screeching halt. Although sex still occurs, it’s nothing like the “good ol’ days.” The


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days where it was nothing to have multiple partners within a several hour time span. On a leather run weekend, over the course of two nights, it would be nothing to have up to a dozen partners. Leather runs over time have also morphed into events. Contests like IML and ILSb, and educational events, like Wichita’s own Leather Camp. These events toned it down, added educational classes and stressed safer sex. The addition of classes was necessary because the old mentorship program was all but wiped out from the AIDS crisis. And nowadays with more and more people in committed relationships, the amount of sex at the runs has diminished as well. (Also it’s not as easy to have raunchy, go from one person to the next person, sex at a hotel like it was when it was in the woods!). However, sex is still a driving force for many who attend these events, and not to forget the booze!  But the one thing that has remained since the beginning of Leather runs

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is the camaraderie that exists with those who attend. It’s like a big family get together, sex included (especially if you’re from Arkansas like me, then it’s no different!!). It’s good to see old friends, renew friendships, make new friends, and pick up where you left off with your “friends with benefits” friends.

So if you get the chance to attend a Leather run or a Leather event, don’t miss out on life by not taking a chance; come and attend. You’ll make some of the best friendships you can ever have. You’ll have the time of your life. Just come with an open mind (and possibly an open relationship). If you’re timid and

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afraid, don’t be, step out and come attend some part of the weekend. At this year’s Leather Camp, the Friday and Saturday events are open to the public. Both are at the Fantasy South 40. Come see what Leather is all about. For more information on Leather Camp visit www. leathercamp.com. l


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LIBERTY PRESS - IT’S BACK TO SCHOOL TIME. celebration held in September.

Student groups Free State High School GSA, Lawrence, (785) 832-6050, phatcher@usd497.org, welcomes all queer, questioning and straight ally youth to talk about issues. Meets Wednesdays.

Community Centers The Center, 1602 E. Waterman, Wichita Kansas State University LGBT Resource Center, 207 A/B Holton Hall, Manhattan, (785) 532-5299, www.kstate-edu/lgbt Open Roads LGBT Community Center, Hays, (785) 259-6526, openroadslgbt@gmail.com, www. openroadslgbt.org

Health Douglas County AIDS Project, 346 Maine, Suite 160, Lawrence, (785) 8430040, www.douglascountyaidsproject. org Hunter Health Clinic, 2318 E. Central, Wichita, (316) 262-3611, FREE HIV confidential or anonymous testing with Spanish and Vietnamese interpreters. KU Internal Medicine-Midtown, KU School of Medicine, 1001 N. Minneapolis, Wichita, (316) 293-1840, (877) 472-8227 toll-free, (316) 293-2652 HIV Program LGBT Health Coalition of Sedgwick County, Wichita, (316) 285-0007, www. sedgwickcountylgbt.org Positive Connections, 1001 SW Garfield Ave, third floor, Topeka, (785) 232-3100, www.pcneks.org Positive Directions, 414 S. Commerce, Wichita, (316) 263-2214, (316) 2635214, www.pdiks.com Regional AIDS Project, Manhattan, (785) 587-1999 or (785) 238-5338 Junction City, rap@flinthills.com Sedgwick County Health Dept., 2716 W. Central, Wichita, (316) 660-7300, www.sedgwickcounty.org The Sweet Emergency Fund, KUSM-W MPA, 1010 N. Kansas, Wichita, (316) 293-3405

Politics/Activism Kansas Equality Coalition, www. kansasequalitycoalition.org, chapters across the state. Kansas Statewide Transgender Education Project, (785) 215-7436, stephanie.mott@k-step.org, www.kstep.org, provides transgender education and resources. Peace and Social Justice Center of South Central Kansas, 1407 N. Topeka, Wichita, (316) 263-5886, director@ wichitapeace.org, www.wichitapeace. org Wichita Pride, info@wichitapride. org, www.wichitapride.org, annual

Haskell Shout OUT, Haskell Indian Nations University, Bobby. crowfeather@haskell.edu, dedicated to actively seeking to bridge the Native LGBTQ community and their straight allies by promoting Openness, Understanding, and Tolerance. Meets Thursdays at 6pm in Stidham Union. KU Queers & Allies, University of Kansas, Lawrence, (785) 864-3091, qanda@ku.edu, www.ku.edu/~qanda Lawrence High School GSA, (785) 330-2391, ArlaKan@usd497.org, welcomes all LGBT, questioning and straight youth to talk about issues. Meets almost every Friday at 3:05pm in the LHS library. Manhattan High School GSA, mhs_ gsa@hotmail.com Pitt State GSA, Pittsburg State University, pittstategaystraightalliance@ gmail.com

of Wichita, 7202 E. 21st St., (316) 6843481, officemanager@firstuu.net, www. firstuu.net, A Welcoming Congregation. Kalpa Bhadra Kadampa Buddhist Center, 721 W. 13th St., Wichita, (316) 263-1533, info@meditateinkansas.org, www.meditateinkansas.org Lutheran Campus Ministry, 1421 W. 19th, Lawrence, lutheran@ku.edu Metropolitan Community Church of Topeka, 4425 SW 19th, (785) 2721442, office@mcctopeka.org, www. MCCTopeka.org, services Sundays at 10am. Pine Valley Christian Church, 5620 E. 21st St., Wichita, (316) 685-2421, churchoffice@pvcconline.org, www. pvcconline.org

Support Central Plains Area Agency on Aging, 2622 W. Central Suite 500, Wichita, (316) 660-5120, www.cpaaa.org, CPAAA is available to assist seniors, caregivers, and adults with disabilities through life’s transitions and with various levels of support. COMCARE Crisis Intervention Services, 934 N. Water, Wichita, (316) 660-7500 free 24/7, www. sedgwickcounty.org

AUGUST 2013 Waterman, every Friday from 7-9pm. Headquarters Counseling Center, Lawrence, (785) 841-2345 free 24/7, www.hqcc.lawrence.ks.us HIV+ Men’s Support Group, Wichita, (316) 293-3405, mmadecky@kumc.edu O n e D a y A t A Ti m e , Wi c h it a , Alcoholics Anonymous meetings held Tuesdays and Thursdays at 8pm at First MCC, 156 S. Kansas. PFLAG Hutchinson, PO Box 2488, Hutchinson, (620) 899-2345, pflaghutch@gmail.com PFLAG Lawrence/Topeka, (785) 235-3831, sffeist@msn.com, www. pflagnekansas.org, meets 1st Sundays, 2-4pm at MCC of Topeka, 4425 SW 19th. Transgender Resource and Awareness Network (TRAN), www.thefaceoftrans. com, provides resources, information, and news regarding transgender issues in Wichita. TransYouth of Kansas, Topeka, Paula@ tyks.org, www.tyks.org, providing support for transgender youth and their families.

Social

Flint Hills PFLAG, Manhattan, (785) 410-3130, fhpflag@sbcglobal.net, www. fhpflag.org, meets 3rd Tuesdays, 7pm, First Congregational Church, 700 Poyntz Ave.

Wichita Area Sexual Assault Center, 355 N. Waco, Suite 100, (316) 2630185 office, (316) 263-3002 crisis line 24/7, wasac@wichitasac.com, www. wichitasac.com, free, confidential sexual assault services to all genders and sexual orientations. Medical & legal advocacy, support groups, adult & child crisis counseling, educational programs.

Heart of America Men’s Chorus, Wichita, (316) 708-4837, www.hoamc. org

Get Connected, Wichita, (316) 4913778, LGBTQIA youth group for ages 12-21. Meets at The Center, 1602 E.

Wichita Transgender Coalition, wichitatranscoalition@gmail.com, wichitatrans.webs.com/. l

That Gay Group!, Wichita State U n i v e r s i t y, ( 3 1 6 ) 9 7 8 - 7 0 1 0 , thatgaygroup@gmail.com, www. wichita.edu/tgg

Junction City Teddy Bears, www. jctbears.com/index.htm NetworQ, Lawrence, KansasNetworQ@ yahoo.com, www.KansasNetworQ.org, meets at Maceli’s, 1031 New Hampshire Wichita Bears, presidentwichitabears@ yahoo.com, www.wichitabears.org Wichita Organization of Leather Fetishes, (316) 201-6242, www. woolfks.com Wichita Prime Timers, ICTPrimeTimers@aol.com, www. primetimersww.org/Wichita, social group for mature gay men.

Spiritual A Journey In The Light Ministries, 2231 S. Bluff (St. Christopher ’s Episcopal Chapel), Wichita, Sunday Praise and Worship services at 11am. College Hill United Methodist Church, 2930 E. 1st, Wichita, (316) 683-4643, www.collegehillumc.org, Sunday Celebrations at 8:30, 9:40 and 11:00am. First Congregational United Church of Christ, 700 Poyntz Ave., Manhattan, (785) 537-7006, www.uccmanhattan. org, Sunday services at 10:45am; Taize services Thursday at 7pm, An Open and Affirming Congregation. First Metropolitan Community Church of Kansas, 156 S. Kansas, Wichita, (316) 267-1852, www.mccwichita.com, www.godlovesyouperiod.com, Sunday services at 10:15am. First Unitarian Universalist Church


AUGUST 2013

LIBERTY PRESS - IT’S BACK TO SCHOOL TIME!.

Products & Services

In Search of

Massage Guy! 9am-9pm, open 7 days. No appointment necessary. (316) 204-0111, 1st time special, call for details. Male-to-male massage

ISO Gay Duplicate Bridge Group in Kansas--or players to start one. Contact: outlier7@yahoo.com.

tinyurl.com/herscopes Charlene Lichtenstein’s ground-breaking astrology book HerScopes: A Guide To Astrology For Lesbians is celebrating its 10th anniversary! The secrets that are revealed about each sign continue to amaze. Makes a great gift.

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ISO Friendship 58-year-old transgender 5’4” 140 lbs on medication looking for same or female for friendship and outings. Wichita/SouthCentral Kansas region. No sex. Contact michelletg58@gmail.com

Classifieds are available for $5 for the first 15 words. E-mail editor@libertypress.net for other options, and pricing.

T

he dog days of summer heat up with lots of planetary movement. All personal planets change signs and some oppose retrograde outer planets. Actions can go into overdrive, run amok and lead us into unalterable changes. Will it be a howl at the moon or dance under the stars? It’s your move.

ARIES (MAR. 21 - APRIL 20) Minor home-based decisions have mammoth repercussions in your longterm plans and life mission. Move a couch and create a sinkhole. So my advice for any proud Ram who is hankering for domestic transition is to wait until the fall. Only then can you more easily accomplish what you initially set out to do without any surprising fallout. Meantime, enjoy the quiet.

LEO (JULY 24 - AUG. 23) Ongoing stress has a way of contributing to many of your physical ailments. August is the month to deal with the burden of any secrets or psychological baggage in your life. Proud Lions always want to put on the very best face to the crowds. It is still possible to continue your big performance, but at the very least wrestle with your skeletons backstage.

TAURUS (APRIL 21 - MAY 21) Stray thoughts and minor comments resonate through the cosmos. This is great if you are interested in creating a ruckus, but not so great if you want to quietly work behind the scenes. Queer Bulls should keep their opinions to themselves for now. Think happy thoughts. You can unfurl your manifesto later this year and create a winter revolution.

VIRGO (AUG. 24 - SEPT. 23) Friends can lead you into mischief if you heedlessly follow their lead. Lucky thing! Queer Virgins may unwittingly go overboard in the thrill of the moment. Think before you leap and see if what pals do is something that you really want to do too. If not, go it alone. Even better, connect with new acquaintances or groups that give you something that pals can’t at this time.

GEMINI (MAY 22 - JUNE 21) Pink Twins may blow their carefully crafted budget now as their eyes (and desires) grow too big for their wallets. This can get you into a financial hole if you are not careful. Lovers and other hangers-on may make their demands, but that doesn’t mean that you have to agree to them. In fact, being a little thrifty now may offer more to spend later this year. CANCER (JUNE 22 - JULY 23) What is yours is yours and what is theirs is . . . yours? Now, now gay Crab. You can’t achieve balance in relationships if you are not willing to give a little. But giving up too much is not a good thing either. Your mission now is to achieve balance between the “I” and the “We.” Discover the connections as well as the individual needs. Achieve nirvana later this year.

LIBRA (SEPT. 24 - OCT. 23) Your career commands center stage and seems to require all of your attention. The power brokers like what they see in you and opportunities open up before you. Jump into the shark tank with your harpoon, proud Libra, and go hunting. But too much focus on your professional path can make partners and family feel left out. Can you find time for both? Let’s just see. SCORPIO (OCT. 24 - NOV. 22) You step into the global stage and are ready to create a big splash. But your words might be taken out of context and you may flub a vital point. There is no erase and re-record option here, queer Scorp. So be very careful with what you say and how you say it, especially where it can land you in the deep end. Keep your thoughts fluid but don’t gush.

SAGITTARIUS (NOV. 23 - DEC. 22) Lovers and their demands may become more trouble and much more expensive than they’re worth at this time. Are you prepared to give in to every little whim? If so, be prepared to pay dearly for it. Otherwise be kind but firm. Gay Archers are advised to window shop rather than buy. Enjoy things in small bursts. Ah, isn’t that the way it always is? CAPRICORN (DEC. 23 - JAN. 20) Relationships begin to consume you and you might change your entire outlook and life direction because of them. Try not to fall into someone else’s concept of who you should be. Retain your individuality and own sense of destiny and purpose. And most importantly, know yourself and what works best for you. There is time to be a pair. But a pair of what? AQUARIUS (JAN. 21 - FEB. 19) Potholes in your job can cause unintended tumult when and where you least expect it. Things that you have put off doing and colleagues that you might have mentally written off, come back to bite you. But all is not late nights and weekends working back into any good graces, Aqueerius. Redeem yourself with careful and calculated apple-polishing. Rub-a-dub! PISCES (FEB. 20 - MAR. 20) What seems like carefree fun may lead to serious changes in the dynamics of certain friendships. Maybe you have outgrown some pals? Or maybe your interests are taking a different direction. Whatever it is, be prepared to go out on your own and create new associations that are more in sync with your creative passions. Swim in new pools, Guppie.

(c) 2013 THE STARRY EYE, LLC., All Rights Reserved. For Entertainment Purposes Only. Lichtenstein’s blog www.thestarryeye.typepad.com covers everything new age. Her astrology book HerScopes: A Guide to Astrology For Lesbians is the best in tongue-in-cheek astrology. Order now at tinyurl.com/Herscopes.


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AUGUST 2013

The Store’s Sweet Revue June 15, 2013

Pictured from left: Caliente Amor, one of the organizers of the event, performing. Fritz Capone’s Coat of Many Colors on display at the Revue in memory of the late performer. The Store owners Colene Marshall-Binns and Donna Binns with Caliente. Photos courtesy of Charles Gonzales

WICHITA - Following in the tradition of bar-named revues to benefit the Sweet Emergency Fund for people living with AIDS, The Store organized its first Sweet Revue, Saturday, June 15. It was a resounding success with performers, donated auction items and a packed house. The final total verified by Teresa Romey and staff at Dr. Sweet’s office: $5,770. An unexpectedly large amount for the smallest LGBT bar in Wichita! l


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Liberty Press Aug 2013