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2 LinQ // NOVEMBER 2016
IN THIS ISSUE
NOV 2016 VOL 38 / NO. 11
THAT’S WHAT I’M TALKIN’ ABOUT PAGES 4 & 5 Helena centers a discussion on watching television today vs. the by-gone era when everyone watched the same shows.
THANK U DONALD TRUMP PAGE 8
Tuesday’s personal journey to her zen place includes Donald Trump, Jerry Falwell Jr., Franklin Graham, and Carol Taylor-Shim.
I’M TIRED OF BEING “WOKE” PAGE 9
Carol Taylor-Shim’s essay on the impact of being “woke” to a heightened sense of social injustices.
POSITIVELY UNBREAKABLE PAGE 12
On World AIDS Day, December 1, playwright Lisa A. Brown debuts Positively Unbreakable, a play which tackles the issues of HIV, homophobia, IV drug use, and religion. The play will run from December 1-3 at the Lyric Theatre.
THE POWER OF THE QUEER VOTE PAGES 16 & 17
2017 Pride Festival Chair Paul Brown urges the LGBTQ+ community to let their voices be heard on November 8th.
NOVEMBER JUNE 2016 // LinQ 3
TALKIN’ ABOUT HUMOR
by Helena Handbasket
am just so overwhelmed. I mean, how does anyone make an informed choice that they can live with and be happy about? It was all so very easy once upon a time but now there is just too much flooding my brain. What am I talking about, you ask? Well, of course, it is what to watch on television. Back in the old days (damn, that makes me sound so old) I can remember when we had 4 channels. We had ABC, CBS, and NBC plus the public television station, PBS. I never watched the latter very much but I loved watching TV. When I was
4 LinQ // JUNE 2016 . HUMOR
really young, I would lie in bed until everyone was asleep and then I would sneak into the living room and turn on the TV. I would lay on my stomach with my elbows out in front of me and my chin in my hands and silently laugh at the humor that the dear Mr. Johnny Carson was delivering, much of which I didn’t even understand at such a young age. When I was in 5th grade I can remember how much I anticipated the next week’s episode of Laverne and Shirley or One Day at a Time. Fast forward to my high school days and imagine how excited I was when
the new season of Knott’s Landing or Dallas came on! Those characters were like friends that came to visit each week and my week wasn’t complete until I watched each episode. And eventually, I was thrilled to see shows like Ellen (the sitcom, not the talk show) and then Will and Grace come on and represent people like me in a positive light. Then came Queer Eye for the Straight Guy and Queer As Folk, both opening new doors of awareness. Oh, how I became addicted to those! Now I turn on the 60 inch to enjoy a little escape from reality by
watching some entertainment on the tube and the search begins. Between the 311 channels and all of the choices between comedy, drama, reality, etc., I don’t know what to watch. Add to that all of the choices that Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime and others offer and I am really done in. Friends make recommendations but back in the day, everyone was watching the same things because there were fewer choices. Part of the fun was discussing who shot J.R. or the fight between Alexis and Crystal with others. Now I go to work and talk about how much I enjoyed the episode of Last Night in Halifax or Wentworth and people look at me like I have a third eye. By the way, I think I have a little crush on Lip (short for Phillip) on Shameless. I used to pride myself on keeping up with what was fresh and trendy on the television but these
days I can’t keep up with all of the shows that come and go. I just recently finished all 5 seasons of Six Feet Under and loved it, although I did cry during the last episode. I didn’t expect it to end like that. Like I said earlier in the article, I get so involved in these shows
Oh the sadness! So, in conclusion, I often offer some sort of advice or words of wisdom at the end of my little writing. This month, however, for my birthday month, I need to take your advice. I can hear you now... “GET A LIFE Helena and stop watching so much damn television. Maybe if your fat ass got off the couch and stopped watching TV and maybe take a dance class or join a Zumba class, you might lose a little of that ‘baby weight’ that you have been carrying for 40 years.” Thanks ya’ll... your advice is so helpful. Going to a corner to sit in a fetal position and cry for a little while. Anyone know what is on TV tonight? I’m gonna need a diversion. Talk to ya’ll next month.
that they become like friends of mine and when a series ends, I go through a little bit of grief and sadness. I mean, unless they make a movie years later, I’ll never see those characters again.
Send comments or suggestions to HelenahandbasketKY@gmail.com
HUMOR . OCTOBER 2016 // LinQ 5
6 LinQ // NOVEMBER 2016 . ADVOCACY
IMPERIAL COURT OF KENTUCKY NEWS by H.M.I.M. Emperor XXXV of the Imperial Court of Kentucky, Russell Drake
the attendees from Reign 35! Additionally, we were happy to celebrate with the Sovereign Imperial Court of Indiana at their Investitures ceremony in Clarksville. As Emperor, I was amazed at
the fantastic turnout for the Emperor’s Turnabout Show at Crossings Lexington. Nine court members who don’t typically perform in drag donned wigs, heels, and dresses and entertained a packed house on a Saturday night. It was a hilarious and impressive evening, and I couldn’t be more grateful for the support of the community! Our second State Function of Reign 35, The Julie Vaughn Memorial Closet Ball, attracted great participation from four beautiful contestants, and Aurora and I would like to send a special thanks to the professionals who volunteered to make our first time performers look gorgeous! Congratulations to our winner, Seven! Look for her to continue entertaining at a number of Lexington venues. We were also privileged to partner with the Transylvania University T-Unity organization to produce a show for students and the general public in the Haggin Auditorium on campus. Proceeds benefitted the T-Unity group in their efforts to provide a social outlet for LGBT students and allies. We also worked with Homeplace High Adventure
for Drag Bingo at West Sixth Brewing Company. The evening was a fun time that raised money for the STAY Project, which works to empower LGBT youth living in Appalachia. And finally, we produced the Diva of Darkness pageant at Soundbar, benefitting the Pride Community Services Organization. There was a hard-fought battle between Pandora St. James and Serena Van Daren, with Pandora taking the crown! As a member of the International Court System, the Imperial Court of Kentucky is proud to advocate for LGBT Vote 2016. Don’t forget to exercise your constitutional right to vote on November 8th! To call attention to our choice this year, the Imperial Court of Kentucky will be hosting a Get Out the Vote Show on Wednesday, November 2nd at Crossings Lexington. We invite everyone to join us as we celebrate our freedoms! Be on the lookout for our other upcoming events as we near the Holiday Season! Our AVOL Kids Christmas Show will be returning this year to raise funds in order to purchase presents for Central Kentucky kids in need. Our Miss Mary Christmas Pageant and Very Fairy Christmas Show return as well! Thank you so much to our great community, and for your continuing support of Reign 35!
ADVOCACY . NOVEMBER 2016 // LinQ 7
he Imperial Court of Kentucky has had a fantastic month, and we’re looking forward to more exciting events coming up in the next few weeks! Empress Aurora Cummings and I were thrilled to accompany a large contingent of our membership to Coronation festivities in Cincinnati, Ohio to celebrate with Their Majesties, Emperor Owen Cash and Empress Alana Reign in the culmination of a great year of fundraising in the Buckeye State. A big thank you goes out to all of
TransKY ADVOCATE by Tuesday G Meadows
Thank U Donald Trump F
“The moment I let go of it was the moment I got more than I could handle/The moment I jumped off of it/Was the moment I touched down...” Thank U, Alanis Morissette
or me personally (and for most of the country, it seems), this election cycle has been jarring, but also clarifying. My mind was on politics, in fact, as I was listening to Alanis Morissette sing Thank U, where she thanks all of the things—both good and bad—that helped bring her to her moment of zen. In the video, she stands naked before the world, at peace. Today, I also stand naked in a different way. A few years ago, I identified as Republican, Christian, and a social liberal. I no longer consider myself any of those. In 2008, I supported John McCain. I thought he was a decent human being and had always seemed like a “voice of reason;” someone who didn’t subscribe to hate politics. When he lost to the Democrat in the election, I really didn’t think much about it. In fact, I didn’t really even know much at that time about the guy who won (that’s President Obama, for those of you keeping score at home). Then, I had a conversation with my conservative cousin. He said that McCain was “too weak” to be president. He said that McCain had ruined the Republican party with his “compromising” style. He said that the Republicans needed someone a lot tougher on “those” liberals. I thought Obama had been a decent president, so I voted for him in 2012. Historically, I switched parties often, back and forth from one side of the aisle to the other, for the previous
11 presidential elections that I had voted in; so as we geared up for this election, I was open to both parties. Of course, there were some things that I didn’t like about Republicans. I have certainly seen some smallminded local politicians like Matt Bevin and Mitch McConnell who consistently use LGBTQ rights as a wedge issue, but I assured myself that they were just playing the backward Kentucky politics game where we will vote for whoever buys the most ads on TV to tell us that coal is coming back. From day one of the primaries, I didn’t love any of the Republicans. As Trump has gradually taken over the narrative of this election, it seems like the Republican party is revealing its true self. Thank U Donald Trump, you made me not being a Republican anymore so much easier! I cannot imagine a worse human being running for president, much less actually being president. I will not now or ever again identify as a Republican. It truly has become the party of hate. Next, I’ve always considered myself a Christian. Some of you know that my own church of 40 years told me that they would not support me when I revealed that I was transgender. I figured it was their loss. After that, I just considered myself unchurched. But with the help of people like Jerry Falwell Jr., from Liberty University, and Franklin
8 LinQ // NOVEMBER 2016 . ADVOCACY
Graham, I now no longer consider myself a Christian. Yes, there are a handful of churches that are accepting but to me it feels like just a few churches going against the grain. Considering the horrible things that the Pope has said about transgender people, it seems like the Christian faith has declared war on me. (I only specifically call out Christianity because I used to consider myself one. No longer.) Finally, I used to say that I was a social liberal, even as a Republican. With the help of people such as Carol Taylor-Shim, a Social Justice Educator at the Violence Intervention and Prevention Center at UK, I now realize that being a “social liberal” is not enough. Calling oneself a liberal is easy; going out and confronting injustice is a lot harder. I now consider myself a revolutionary for social change. Since when is voting for a woman for president not revolutionary? I will vote in my 12th presidential election on November 8th. Not voting is such a lame excuse to not really look hard at yourself and determine who you really are. It is also counterproductive to fixing problems. Sometimes you just have to walk naked in front of the world. You may write me at email@example.com or follow me on Twitter @trishgigi. Now Tuesday’s gone with the wind.
I’M TIRED OF BEING “WOKE” by Carol Taylor-Shim, MSW
remember those days when I was aware of systemic and institutional racism, misogyny, homophobia, and transphobia but not fully connected to the impact of it on every single aspect of my life. There was a time in my life when I was able to navigate the world with my cisgender, middle class, and heterosexual passing privileges; never giving a second thought to how they intersected in my life;
never considering the impact of rape culture on our society; not thinking of how subtle and sometimes overt the messages are that create the culture of hate to which we are all now openly exposed. Thanks DJT!! Those were simpler, easier times in a way. But let me tell you something, being “woke” is exhausting. For those of you not in the know, being “woke” is about having a heightened sense
of social injustices, their sources, and their connections. You see it everywhere, around every corner, in every space. I can look at a commercial and in about 5 seconds break down all of the social injustices present. “Wow, why is the White family all represented, but the Black mom is presented like she’s single?” “Why does Hardee’s need women in bikinis to sell burgers to men?” “Where are the Asian/ Pacific Islanders?” “Why is there so much misogyny and patriarchy in this insurance commercial?” I used to be able to look at people who are different from me and not imme diately start assessing how “woke” THEY are. It was easy to just go and kick it with my White friends or my heterosexual friends without questioning how much they understand about me and who I am. I never worried about people’s political leanings. It never crossed my mind whether or not my White friends would engage in blatant acts of racism, bigotry, and bias. Never once did I suspect that any of them would be anything less than supportive when and if I brought a hurt to them that was
based in racism. I thought they would just get it. Now I realize how naïve that was of me. I was still asleep. I was covered in the sweet slumber of assuming the best out of people. When you’re “woke”, that slumber is replaced with tossing and turning at the notion that people you once held so close to you were also contributing to the racism, homophobia, and bias you experience. I pay attention to what my friends post on social media and for some of them I’ve had to put some distance between us, just so I can protect myself from the disappointment of knowing in my heart that the people I thought were down for me, really aren’t. They choose not to learn and understand me at all. As long as I’m performing my “Blackness” in a way that doesn’t threaten, intimidate, or make them the tiniest bit uncomfortable, we’re cool. As long as I’m kicking and spinning to techno and not bouncing to trap musik we’re good. So here I am, “woke” as hell. Now I see how hard it is for my White friends and for my heterosexual friends to see all that I carry as a queer woman of color. I recognize how unfair it is of me to expect so much out of people who are still in that safe slumber that I once inhabited. They aren’t about this life. But I also know that in order for me to survive I have to look to others for support in my identities. People that I know get it, get me, and are “woke” as hell too.
ADVOCACY . NOVEMBER 2016 // LinQ 9
AROUND THE LIBRARY
reviewed by Emily Elkind
In the City of Shy Hunters written by Tom Spanbauer CULTURE
he book I reviewed this month is called In the City of Shy Hunters. This book focuses on Will and his family, who live in Idaho on an Indian reservation. The story goes back and forth between Willâ€™s life in Idaho as a child with his friend Charlie 2 Moons and his adult life in New York City. Will moves to New York at the urging of a friend, and his experiences there turn into a search for his long lost friend Charlie 2 Moons. Along the way, he becomes immersed in the gay community and begins working at a local restaurant. Not only are the characters eccentric but they are part of what makes the story so interesting. Thereâ€™s the lady with lots of cats that lives above Will in his apartment building, Ruby, a friend who has feelings for him, and his coworkers at the restaurant. Each set of characters has their own distinct set of challenges. Overall, this book is very interesting, but also very dense. It is not the optimal book to read after the end of a long day. If I had to describe the book, I would say that it is full of imagery and is a character-driven book, rather than a plot driven one. If you prefer such writing, and like the setting of New York City and the gay community, I encourage you to give this book a chance. In The City of Shy Hunters can be found in the Adult Fiction Section of the PCSO Library under FIC S.
CULTURE . NOVEMBER 2016 // LinQ 11
Positively Unbreakable by Lisa A. Brown
n the heart of Wildcat Country— where we bleed blue—my fellow Kentuckians are at risk of an HIV outbreak. “According to the CDC, the Commonwealth of Kentucky is vulnerable based on an increased number of intravenous drug users who share needles. Kentucky health officials say there is one newly reported HIV diagnosis per day on average within the state.”* While those statistics are quite alarming, we are not powerless in reversing this trend. During the NCAA basketball season, 23,500 members of the “Big Blue Nation” filed into the storied Rupp Arena to loudly cheer our beloved Wildcats. I also want to raise my voice, but in an attempt to educate my neighbors, colleagues, family, church members, and those who volunteer in the community that Kentucky is facing an HIV epidemic. Eight NCAA championship banners hang from the rafters at Rupp Arena; let’s champion the cause of Kentuckians knowing their status by being tested for HIV. I am an educator at the University of Kentucky and an avid playwright. I have been provided an awesome opportunity and responsibility to debut my play, Positively Unbreakable, at the historic Lyric Theatre, which is located in downtown Lexington—one mile from Rupp Arena. Positively Unbreakable will premiere on
December 1, 2016, World AIDS Day, and run until December 3rd. It is the riveting story of a married couple who are expecting their first child. Fearing that they are experiencing complications from the pregnancy, they discover the wife is HIV positive. Nieta Wigginton, Lexington native, performs the role of Dr. Keisha Davidson, an educated and upwardly mobile professional woman who has contracted HIV. Wigginton’s prior stage credits include Blues for an Alabama Sky, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Oak & Ivy, and U.S. vs. Fear. She has also been cast in public health productions including Nevertheless: A Story of Resolve and BET’s No Smoking PSA campaign. Whit Whitaker, musician and actor, joins Wigginton on stage as Charles Davidson, Keisha’s husband. Whitaker has also performed in To Kill a Mockingbird, Crumbs from the Table of Joy, Don Quixote, and The King and I. Whitaker says that those productions also have messages of social consciousness or triumph of the human spirit. Positively Unbreakable will take the audience on a journey as Dr. Davidson and her husband, Charles, tackle heavy subject matters including homophobia, intravenous drug use, and how members of the faith based community have often neglected to show love and compassion toward the LGBTQ community. Despite the sensitivity of the subject matter,
12 LinQ // NOVEMBER 2016 . CULTURE
members of the audience will identify with and embrace the Davidsons as they grapple with Keisha’s HIV status. In an unexpected twist, you will not be able to predict the ending. My purpose for writing and producing this play is quite simple: I want to impact and save lives. I am excited to be partnering with AVOL (AIDS Volunteers, Inc.) and the Lexington Fayette County Health Department. Both of these organizations will provide free confidential onsite HIV screenings and will recommend services/ resources for those who may be infected. The Health Department will also provide information about their Clean Needle Exchange Program. Also partnering with me is the Chrysalis House, a residential substance abuse treatment program for women. At the end of Positively Unbreakable, individuals who have previously been diagnosed with HIV or AIDS will share their stories and entertain questions from the audience. Join us December 1-3 at the Lyric Theatre when art meets advocacy and activism.
Q *Posted online January 15, 2016 by WDRB’s Danielle Lama at http://www.wdrb.com/ story/30980679/cdc-researchers-say-muchof-kentucky-at-risk-for-hiv-outbreak
FEATURE . NOVEMBER 2016 // LinQ 13
EXCERPTS FROM BITTEN BY THE FOO-FOO 2000 French Bread Awards – First Prize Published in Pacific Coast Journal, Winter 2002, v.7, no.2, pp.30-38 3rd Excerpt by Reinette F. Jones
nd on this particular morning, Crazy Betty felt compelled to grace the crowd, yet again, with another rendition. Liz and her friends told Betty to “PLEASE shut up!” Because no one was in the mood for her Hetate lies. The insult made Crazy Betty even more determined, she talked louder and faster and she began to cry. Liz and her friends thought that was funny. What had been a serene moment was fast becoming a disastrous morning. Pinks usually intervened when things got out of hand, but this time it was Foo-Foo who stepped in. With Crazy Betty translating her words, Foo-Foo explained the possibility of interzonal relationships. At that point, enough had been said about relationships and far off places. But to further illustrate her point, Foo-Foo drew a simple map on a napkin to show the transonic snok in Central Kentucky that bonds into a black hole, allowing for picosecond galaxy travel. Hot damn! That did it! FooFoo had said the wrong thing. Liz marched up to the bar. “Pico my butt! Do you think we are all a bunch of uneducated dimwits? You come in here with your trashy outfit and talking that hocus-pocus crap, and everybody is supposed to swoon and follow you to the moon and back. Let me show you what I think of the hole in your stars.”
Liz snatched the drawing out of Foo-Foo’s hands, tore it into shreds, and ate it. Two of her buddies came forward to challenge the alien and the lunatic who thought they knew everything. Local customs or not, Foo-Foo had heard and seen enough, she eased off the barstool and sized up the three women. It seemed that there was going to be a fight. Bystanders were taking bets and the odds were in Foo-Foo’s favor; she had crouched down into some kind of a Kung Fu claw stance. Liz and her friends still had their arms down and their fists balled. They didn’t know what to make of the strange woman who didn’t have sense to put her dukes up. Foo-Foo was dancing a circle around the three women while hissing and spitting on the floor and flexing her fingers like she was playing the full range of keys on an invisible piano. Every so many steps she would stop and stomp one foot, then while still crouched down, she circled around the women in the opposite direction. Crazy Betty started screaming. “Sweet Jesus, she is going to kill somebody! HELP! HELP!” Pinks came from behind the bar with the split stick. She pushed Crazy Betty down behind the counter
14 LinQ // NOVEMBER 2016 . COMMUNITY CULTURE
Photo Credit: Kopana Terry
then shoved her way into the middle of Foo-Foo, and Liz and her friends. “All of you know the rules! Take it outside or sit down and shut up! And
that goes for the rest of you in here!” The odds had suddenly shifted. Pinks was not one to take on in a fight. Nothing was known about the newcomer, but it was a folklore fact that Pinks had once wiped the floor with three opponents. She looked Liz and her friends in the eyes and then asked, “Are you staying or leaving?” Liz started to explain, but Pinks cut her off with a wave of her hand, and turned to Foo-Foo, who had stopped moving and stood at her full height. She was quite a few inches taller than Pinks, but she got the same question, “Are you staying or leaving?”
(To be continued in the next issue of LinQ.)
THE POWER OF by Paul Brown 2017 Lexington Pride Festival Chair
he 2017 Lexington Pride Festival will take place Saturday, June 24th. 25,000+ people will come together, stand tall, and proudly state that they either belong to the queer community or are an ally. It’s an amazing day! But it is not the only day for these people to use their voice to show they are proud members of the United States and not just queer culture. We are all a piece of the mainstream and not just a member of the fringe outliers. When should we use that voice to express those sentiments? Every day! How can we do that? One example we just had was National Coming Out Day. Personally, I enjoyed the many comments I saw from my friends on Facebook as they told the world that they were LGBTQ+. There are few things we can do to change minds as powerful as coming out and living out. When we refuse to hide, we tell everyone that we are part of them and we are not ashamed. We also set a model for those youngsters who come behind us. Our willingness to rip down closet doors helps to smooth the trail for those who come behind us. Perhaps they will be able to leave their baggage in the closet and live in a world where no one cares about sexual orientation or gender identity. “That’s just another day,” you say. Well, we stand on the precipice of another opportunity. On November 8th, we have the chance to vote for our next president. Often members of the queer community opt out of voting because they do not believe legislators care. Too many times they have seen legislators pass laws that disenfranchise and alienate them. Too frequently they have felt political pressure to go back in the closet and play quiet as a mouse. They get exhausted from the
FEATURE 16 LinQ // NOVEMBER 2016 . COMMUNITY
fight to feel like they can belong and can be equal when the system often seems rigged to the opposite effect. The fight is hard. Yet, it’s precisely at those downtrodden moments that we members of the LGBTQ+ community must borrow some stilettos from our drag queen sisters and dig in our heels. We must not be pushed to the side. We must research which candidates will do better for our community. No, no candidate will be perfect, but we must make a decision. And we must vote. Voting gives us our voice. Voting allows us to say that I am queer, I am here, and I care about the future in which I live. It’s true that we live in a state that many times has sought to trample the queer community down. It’s easy to believe that using your voice at the polls is just as loud as silence itself because the pro-queer community candidate often loses. So, we walk barefoot along a long road of sharp rocks. That doesn’t mean that we sit idly by entertaining the company of complicity. When we as out individuals vote and wear our “I Voted” stickers, we are visible. We send a message that we will not be second class citizens. We send a message that we will vote and that we will vote to make positive, progressive change—a change that values the inclusion of all people as equals at the table. Even if the candidate for whom we vote loses, we send a message that we will pull a chair up to the table and sit down to break bread like any other person. That message is powerful—far more powerful than what most of us can put on Facebook and Twitter. Most of us are not a Bette Midler, who can reach thousands via a 140 character tweet, but all of us can wear our stickers to the bank, and the doctor’s office, and the grocery store, and the gym, and the post
THE office, and our employment, and everywhere we go people will see that we used our voice. Going to the polls on November 8th is not just a patriotic duty. It is your chance to demonstrate to the world that you are proud not only on June 24th but today, tomorrow, and every day. You are going to the polls to select who will pass laws that will affect the LGBTQ+ community for years to come. You cannot stay at home that day. Refusing to participate sends a different message—one of apathy and powerlessness. When you don’t wear that “I Voted” sticker, no one
sees your power and no one hears your voice. That complicity, that silence is a message we can’t afford to send if we ever want to reside in a world where we are every bit as equal as our heteronormative counterparts. I wish I could make your decision and your vote easy for you, but I can’t tell you for whom to vote. You must do the research and determine for yourself who is the best candidate. Then, you must vote. Vote with pride. Wear your sticker with pride. Be visible. Be proud. November 8th. June 24th. Today. Tomorrow. And every day.
FEATURE .. .NOVEMBER FEATURE OCTOBER COMMUNITY SEPTEMBER OUT & ABOUT . MAY 2016 OUT & ABOUT . MARCH 2016 // // LinQ LinQ 17 17
REFLECTING ON RURAL PRIDE by Matthew Frederick, Pride Education Project
uring the past year, my husband and I have led the development of an LGBTQ services and advocacy nonprofit based in Berea, KY. While we have both faced the issues of living our lives as members of the LGBTQ community in the rural South since birth, creating and operating a community organization in the same environment has continued to widen and deepen our perspective on living in these spaces. The Pride Education Project began by surveying the climate in Berea. We made a short survey that we brought with us to local events and festivals. From our rainbow, brochure-laden table, we sought out how our community felt about itself and what people thought were its most significant needs. One of the most glaring insights we found was that many LGBTQ people do not feel safe. In public spaces, we fear aggression aimed at our very identities. In private, we fear outright invasion. This is in stark contrast to the vision presented to us by many non-LGBTQ individuals, even those identifying as allies. To those outside of the LGBTQ community, our lives’ comfort is taken for granted, but it seems to many within the community that our lives are taken for granted. Especially in rural spaces, we lack the security and safety that many consider second nature to possess. We are not protected from discrimination in housing, employment, and public accommodation. We do not expect civility from our peers. We expect to be harassed, harried, and bullied, and the worst examples demonstrate that our physical bodies are vulnerable to the whims of bigots and the cruelties
of the hateful. This should not suggest that we are not proud of where we came from, because we love ourselves, our peers, our community, and the shared history we possess. However, it would be foolhardy to ignore the many prevailing obstacles facing LGBTQ life in the Commonwealth’s rural spaces. To that end, we wanted to hold a crowning event to mark the first year of our operations, and so we organized a Pride Prom. We wanted to create a safe, open, and inclusive space for anyone to use. We wanted to provide what is a shared experience for many in our culture, and thanks to a generous grant from JustFundKY and our community volunteers, we were able to do so. The Prom w a s successf ul in gaining the attention a n d at tenda nce of many high school students but our event’s 140 attendees ranged from babies to senior citizens. As LGBTQ people, we are denied many experiences that others take for granted, and attending Prom dressed as we wish with the person we love is something that is or has been denied to so many.
NOVEMBER 2016. FEATURE . COMMUNITY 18 LinQ // OCTOBER 2016
Photo Credit: Meg Wilson Photography
By holding this event, we hoped to increase the presence and visibility of the LGBTQ community while promoting its most basic aims. Our intentions and goals lead us to want to make our spaces, especially our rural spaces, places where we can all thrive. It is our intention to live fulfilling lives of joy, and it is our hope that everyone in our community can truly pursue happiness. To reach the Pride Education Project, connect with the organization through its Facebook page or email at PrideEducationProject@gmail.com.
2nd Annual Adult Pride Community Prom Organizing Committee and PCSO Board Members
Attendees at the 2nd Annual Adult Pride Community Prom
Attendees at the 2nd Annual Adult Pride Community Prom
Nathan Spalding & Pablo Del Rey at the 2nd Annual Adult Pride Community Prom
Attendees at the First Georgetown Pride Community Cookout on October 8th
LeTonia Jones speaks at Donna Ison’s ‘Futher Out’
Performers, Speakers, and Attendees at Donna Ison’s ‘Futher Out’ on October 13th
K. Nicole Wilson speaks at Donna Ison’s ‘Futher Out’
Wednesday, November 2 1:00 p.m.-“Living with Aging” 60+ Senior Discussion Group (Bell House Senior Citizen Center) 7:00 p.m.-“Heart To Heart” LGBT Discussion Group (PCSO Center) Thursday, November 3 6:30 p.m.-PCSO Board Meeting (PCSO Center) Friday, November 4 OutReels Cincinnati (Warsaw Federal Incline Theater) Saturday, November 5 OutReels Cincinnati (Warsaw Federal Incline Theater) PCSO UK Football Concessions (Commonwealth Stadium) 10:00 a.m.-Grief Support Group (Ahava Center for Spiritual Living) 7:00 p.m.-Speakeasy FUNdraiser by SisterSound (Unitarian Universalist Church) 7:30 p.m.-TransKentucky Meeting Sunday, November 6 OutReels Cincinnati (Warsaw Federal Incline Theater) 6:30 p.m.-Team Lex Volleyball (Bluegrass Volleyball Center) Tuesday, November 8 Election Day 6:30 p.m.-PFLAG Meeting (St. Michael’s Episcopal Church) 9:00 p.m.-LGBT Sci-Fi/Horror Group (PCSO Center) Wednesday, November 9 1:00 p.m.-“Living with Aging” 60+ Senior Discussion Group (Bell House Senior Citizen Center) 5:00 p.m.-Richmond’s Alphabet Soup Support Group (UU Fellowship Hall) 7:00 p.m.-“Heart To Heart” LGBT Discussion Group (PCSO Center) Saturday, November 12 9:00 p.m.-Kentucky Bourbon Bears Board Meeting (Crossings Lexington) Sunday, November 13 6:00 p.m.-Imperial Court Meeting (PCSO Center) 6:30 p.m.-Team Lex Volleyball (Bluegrass Volleyball Center)
Tuesday, November 15 Editorial & Ad Deadline for LinQ Magazine Wednesday, November 16 1:00 p.m.-“Living with Aging” 60+ Senior Discussion Group (Bell House Senior Citizen Center) 7:00 p.m.-“Heart To Heart” LGBT Discussion Group (PCSO Center) Thursday, November 17 6:30 p.m.-LexPrideFest Planning Meeting (PCSO Center) Friday, November 18 7:00 p.m.-Senior’s Bistro/Potluck (PCSO Center) Saturday, November 19 PCSO UK Football Concessions (Commonwealth Stadium) 1:00 p.m.-Librarian’s Work Day (PCSO Center) 6:00 p.m. Bluegrass Black Pride Honors Banquet (Four Points Sheraton) Sunday, November 20 Transgender Day of Remembrance 6:30 p.m.- Team Lex Volleyball (Bluegrass Volleyball Center) Wednesday, November 23 1:00 p.m.-“Living with Aging” 60+ Senior Discussion Group (Bell House Senior Citizen Center) 7:00 p.m.-“Heart To Heart” LGBT Discussion Group (PCSO Center) Sunday, November 27 3:00 p.m.-LGBT Sci-Fi/Horror Group (PCSO Center) 6:00 p.m.-ICK’s Board of Directors/Membership Meeting (PCSO Center) 6:30 p.m. - Team Lex Volleyball (Bluegrass Volleyball Center) Wednesday, November 30 1:00 p.m.-“Living with Aging” 60+ Senior Discussion Group (Bell House Senior Citizen Center) 7:00 p.m.-“Heart To Heart” LGBT Discussion Group (PCSO Center) Thursday, December 1 6:30 p.m.-PCSO Board Meeting (PCSO Center)
For more details on events, view the full calendar at pcsoky.org at the bottom of the webpage
COMMUNITY & SOCIAL GROUPS 24-Hour Crisis Line
24-Hour Teen Crisis Line
Arbor Youth Services
Council for Peace and Justice
Fairness of Louisville
Gay-Straight Alliance, Teens
“Heart to Heart” Discussion Group
Imperial Court of Kentucky
KY Survivors Area of Narcotics Anonymous
Lexington Fair Housing Council
Lexington Human Rights
Lexington Pride Festival
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
PCSO Pride Center
PFLAG Central Kentucky, Inc.
Rainbow Bowling League
Social Services, Lexington
Transgender Youth Family Allies
Trevor Lifeline 24/7
COLLEGE STUDENT GROUPS Berea College ACE
BCTC Gay-Straight Alliance
Centre College BGLA
EKU Alphabet Center
EKU Pride Alliance
Morehead State University
UK LGBTQ* Resource Center
RELIGIOUS GROUPS Ahava Center for Spiritual Living
Bluegrass United Church of Christ
Faith Lutheran Church
First Presbyterian Church
Hunter Presbyterian Church
Lex Friends, Quakers
Maxwell Street Presbyterian Church
St. Martha’s Episcopal Church
St. Michael's Episcopal Church
Unitarian Universalist Church
Woodland Christian Church
HIV/STD TESTING, SERVICES, & INFO AIDS Volunteers of Lexington (AVOL)
Health Department, Fayette County
Health Department, Woodford County
HIV/AIDS Legal Project
Northern KY Region
UK Adolescent Medicine
CALENDAR & DIRECTORY . NOVEMBER 2016 // LinQ 23
LinQ is the only monthly magazine that focuses on the Kentucky LGBTQ... community. LinQ is published monthly by and for the Pride Community...