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April 28-May 11 . 2012



April 28-May 11 . 2012


a&e / life&style

April 28-May 11, 2012 Vol 26 No 26

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news & features   6 13 17

News Notes:   Regional Briefs MeckPAC releases endorsements Mile in someone else’s shoes

opinions & views   4   4   5 10

Editor’s Note General Gayety QPoll Transilluminations

  5   8 11 12 14 21 22 22 24 25 26 26 27

contributors this issue

O’Neale Atkinson, Paige Braddock, Rosendo Brown, Eva Hayward, Jon Hoppel, Charlene Lichtenstein, Lainey Millen, Helene Nathanson, Leslie Robinson, David Stout, Trinity, Aly Windsor

front page Graphic Design: Lainey Millen Photo Credit: Justin Cook a local news partner of The Charlotte Observer


20 Questions ‘Da Baddest Chick’ Embrace Release Adoption’s an option Modern families On the Map Playing the field 411 on the DNC Tell Trinity Out in the Stars Fabulance Jane’s World Q events calendar


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April 28-May 11 . 2012


by o’neale atkinson

Another year older

This is it! Our last issue of qnotes’ 25th anniversary and what a year it has been. It has been a pleasure to come into the paper at the end of this feat and I look forward to moving into the paper’s 26th year of publication. It has been my goal to bring you content relevant to the community that is both entertaining and informative, as is the legacy of the paper. My hope is that my addition to the staff has been well received and I encourage you to share your thoughts and feedback with me to ensure that qnotes is a true reflection of our community. In our last publication I mentioned that if you were not registered to vote by April 13 you would not be able to voice your opinion and cast your vote in the May 8 election. Thanks to feedback from readers, I have been informed that there still is an opportunity for those who have not yet registered to vote against Amendment One. You can still register and do early voting at One-Stop locations across the state between now and May 5. According to the North Carolina State Board of Elections website, in order to participate in early voting, one must go to a OneStop voting site in their county of residence during the absentee voting period, fill out a voter registration application and provide proof of residency by showing the elections official an appropriate form of identification with the citizen’s current name and current address. The following items are deemed acceptable forms of identification for this process: a North Carolina driver’s license with your current address, a utility bill with your name and current address, a document with your name and address from a local, state or U.S. government agency, a paycheck or a W-2 form from an employer or a bank statement or bank-issued credit card statement. I would like to thank those of you who brought this oversight to my attention. Being a master procrastinator myself, I am grateful to hear that there is still an opportunity for those who have not yet registered to participate. If you know someone who has not registered yet, I hope you will encourage them to utilize this information and empower themselves by taking action against Amendment One.

In February of this year, I wrote about my experiences as a citizen of South Carolina during their vote on a similar amendment. At that time I was truly pessimistic about the likelihood that North Carolina would vote down this amendment based on my experience in 2006. I can honestly say that my outlook on this issue is much different now than it was just a few months ago. The outcry I have seen from North Carolinians against this amendment has been overwhelming. To see political leaders, businesses and religious institutions actively speak out against this issue makes me feel confident that we are not alone in this fight. I have received countless emails and phone calls, both here at qnotes and in my role at The LGBT Community Center of Charlotte, asking how people can get involved and help to defeat this amendment. Even more incredible to me is that so many of these inquiries are coming from straight citizens and families who see the bigotry that legislation like this would affix to North Carolina and they want no part in it! This isn’t the first time an amendment to our state’s constitution was added to marginalize a population and limit their ability to marry. An image of article 14, section 8 of the Constitution of North Carolina has been spreading around the internet quite a bit lately. During the Constitutional Convention of 1875, the state adopted an amendment which deemed “all marriages between a white person and a negro, or between a white person and a person of negro descent to the third generation inclusive, are hereby forever prohibited.” This remained in the North Carolina constitution until 1971. If this were to be proposed today it would be an absolute outrage, so why is Amendment One deemed a legitimate practice today in the minds of some? If it passes will we have to wait almost 100 years before the majority realizes the idiocy of this action? With all that said, I look forward to the possibility that my first editor’s note of our 26th year will be one of celebration and not of defeat. To find a One-Stop voting site in your county, visit OS_sites/. : :



editor’s note

general gayety by leslie robinson qnotes contributor

Catholics and gay marriage: Schisms-r-us

I’m not Catholic. Which makes my fascination with the American arm of the Catholic Church a little strange, but it also means I can watch its contortions without fretting over its future. That’s good, because I think the church in this country, while not in its death throes, is suffering from a rupture and a nervous condition. The church’s hold on its members has ruptured and that’s going to make any denomination nervous. A couple of months ago came reports that 98 percent of Catholic women have used contraceptives. Although the statistic has been criticized, American women by any measure are as likely to stick with Catholic-mandated natural family planning as the Pope is to become a Zumba instructor. Then there’s the homosexuality issue generally and the gay marriage issue specifically. When Gov. Martin O’Malley of Maryland signed marriage equality into law on March 1, he became the fifth Catholic governor to do so, in clear opposition to the will of Catholic bishops in those states. As far as I know, none of these governors has been denied communion or excommunicated. But, their trips to the confession booth must be deafening. After grappling with her Catholic faith, Gov. Chris Gregoire of Washington happily signed a marriage-equality bill in February. Opponents are now gathering signatures for a referendum to axe the law. reported that the Archdiocese of Seattle sent a letter to the faithful, saying it plans to have parishes collect signatures. I guess we can add a new Catholic sacrament to the current seven. Right up there with the Anointing of the Sick will be the Employing of the Bic. noted that the push to kill the gay-marriage law might make lay Catholics twitchy. For starters, the Archdiocese of Seattle has long championed civil rights. This time the Catholic hierarchy is batting for the other side. Plus there’s the fact that the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) is backing

the campaign. NOM internal memos, recently revealed in litigation in Maine, advocated a strategy of pitting African-Americans and Hispanics against gay-rights groups. Jesus would be nauseous. And, a number of Washington Catholics don’t feel so well, either. A recent event in a Minnesota high school practically shrieked the disconnect between Catholic clergy and laity. At DeLaSalle, a Catholic high school in Minneapolis, the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis held a required assembly, for seniors only, about marriage. The kids suspected what was coming. Catholic education doesn’t make dummies. A priest and a volunteer couple spoke, and student Matt Bliss told the Star Tribune that all went swimmingly for the first three-quarters of the marriage presentation. Then the speakers implied that adopted children and children with one parent are lesser. Since at least four of the students present were adopted, this was not just baffling, but dippy. “When they finally got to gay marriage, [students] were really upset,” said Bliss. “You could look around the room and feel the anger. My friend who is a lesbian started crying.” The couple compared gay love to bestiality. Several students argued with the speakers and one girl held up a sign that said, “I love my moms.” I’m betting the priest wished for a posse of nuns armed with two rulers apiece. Student Lydia Hannah said the kids were suspicious when only seniors were required to attend. “We put two and two together,” she said, referring to Minnesota’s constitutional amendment limiting marriage to opposite-sex couples. “All of us will be able to vote next fall.” Some clearly won’t vote the way the U.S. Catholic Church wants them to. Even the students at a Catholic school aren’t buying what the church is selling. The clergy better pray to the patron saint of ruptured relationships — if not lost causes. : : info: .


Don’t forget to vote against Amendment One on May 8!

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April 28-May 11 . 2012


20 Questions Gil Croy, Charlotte by David Stout ::

Gil Croy is a renaissance man. He’s the owner of Gil Croy Designs, is an accomplished painter and fine artist and is the driving force behind The Human Canvas body art project, which was highlighted in a March 17 qnotes cover story. In short, he’s the type we love to learn more about here at 20 Questions. You’ll know him a little better, too, after reading the column this time. So, don’t delay — get right on it. (That’s what he said!)

Have you ever completed a work of paint-bynumbers art? Hell, yeah, I love paint by numbers! It takes me back to being a kid again. I always used colors that were so non-conventional. My skin tones were always green, so Little Boy Blue looked like a little alien boy. Do you currently own suspenders? Yes, I have three pairs: one checkerboard, one neon green and one like the firemen wear. Which fast food chain has the best tasting food? Jack In The Box. Those cheap little tacos they sell are the best. Yum! What personal habit do you perform without even thinking about it (e.g., hair twirling, knuckle cracking, etc.)? Looking in the mirror. Man, that sounds vain. I’m just sayin’! Do you know what the plastic tip on a shoestring is called? No, and that has to be the oddest question I have ever been asked. My guess would be “string cap.” [Ed. Note: It’s called an aglet.] How do these films rank based on the number of times you’ve seen them: “Ghost,” “Ghost Rider,” “Ghostbusters,” “Poltergeist”? “Poltergeist” is definitely # 1 (“go into the light Carol Anne”), “Ghostbusters” #2 (just because of Sigourney Weaver), “Ghost” #3 (because I love playin’ in the mud), “Ghost

Rider” #4 (poor Nic). Can you crochet? Only in rope. Have you ever worn a lamb skin condom? Yes. My question is what part of the lamb does that come from? What’s your favorite type of theme park ride? Definitely the roller coaster. Have you ever had a pet reptile? Can’t say that I have. Who, in their prime, was the sexiest teen heartthrob ever? Hands down, the ultimate for me was Jon-Erik Hexum, the model-turned-actor from the ’80s. He was the sexiest man ever! Do you have a water gun in your home? Yes, three actually. With five dogs, they come in handy. Plus, it’s fun to answer the front door and squirt someone — those kids in the white shirts love to get sprayed! If you had to give up one of your senses for a day, which would you let go? It definitely would not be sight, touch, taste or smell, so it would have to be hearing. Mother Nature is taking care of this one on her own it seems. Have you ever shaved off your pubic hair? No, and God knows that with as much hair as I have it would take something Husqvarna makes. Which of these is the better Monday song: “Manic Monday” by The Bangles, “Monday Monday” by The Mamas and the Papas, “New Moon On Monday” by Duran Duran, “Blue Monday” by New Order? Definitely, definitely, definitely New Order’s “Blue Monday.” Hell, yeah! Jell-O, pudding or yogurt? Man, that is difficult. Jell-O’s good, but I’m not a fan of things floating in it. Gotta be yogurt; love to eat the fruit at the bottom. Do you keep coins in your car “just in case”? Nope, any of my emergencies take more   than quarters! Which sitcom mom and dad pair is your alltime favorite? No question, Carol and Mike Brady — if for no other reason than the way they dressed. Have you ever read a Harlequin romance novel? No, but all my friends joke with me that I look like an older version of the long-haired men that are normally on the covers. Well, hopefully it’s for the hair and not that I’m just that cheesy. What style of swimsuit do you wear and is it the same style you like to see on other men? I love the surf board swim trunks. They always dip down low enough to see a hip and oblique muscle. My favorite to see on another man is a square cut, ala Daniel Craig in “Casino Royale.” I can watch that come out of the water all day long! : :

qpoll What TV Family do you relate with the best? See the options and vote: April 28-May 11 . 2012



news notes: from the carolinas, nation and world compiled by Lainey Millen :: | David Stout :: | O’Neale Atkinson ::

Charlotte TOY to host evening event

CHARLOTTE — Time Out Youth will hold its “Platinum: Welcome Home Gala” on June 8, 7-10 p.m., at Extravaganza Depot, 1610 N. Tryon St. Jennifer Roberts will serve as a guest speaker. Roberts is on the Mecklenburg County Board of Commissioners. This evening event will be graced with good, cocktails and music. Two complimentary beverages will be proved to each guest. Additional spirits will be available for cash purchase. For those under 21-years-of-age, non-alcoholic options will be made available. Corporate sponsorships are currently being sought. A packet is available online for download. Tickets are limited with a $100 contribution. For more information, call 704-344-8335, email or visit — L.M.

Royals are England bound

CHARLOTTE — The Charlotte Royals RFC, a gay-inclusive rugby team, is headed to the Bingham Cup in England over the Summer, WBTV reported.


April 28-May 11 . 2012

This is a first for the eight-year-old club. The event is hosted by the International Gay Rugby Association and Board. The biennial tourney’s cup is named for Mark Bingham who was aboard United Airlines Flight 93 on Sept. 11 when it was hijacked by al-Qaeda terrorists. He and the rest of the passengers died when the plane crashed in a field in Shanksville, Penn. He was one of those who attempted to commandeer the aircraft from the terrorists. More than 30 teams worldwide compete for the championship. For more information, visit — L.M.

Triangle Festival marks success

RALEIGH — Crape Myrtle Festival (CMF) held its annual host party on April 7 at the Ballentrae Hume home. This event enabled the organization to raise $24,000 with only $1,280 in expenses. Just shy of 95 percent of the monies raised will go toward supplying the necessary funding to assist those in the Triangle area living with HIV/AIDS. Contributions are still be accepted and the Festival’s board hopes to top the

$36,000 raised last year for local AIDSrelated organizations and LGBT causes. The Alliance of AIDS Services-Carolina received the top funding in 2011 with $15,000 in allocations. Others which obtained monies were AIDS Community Residence Association ($6,500); LGBT Center of Raleigh ($5,000); Equality NC Foundation ($4,000); Duke AIDS Legal Project ($3,000); and El Centro Hispano ($2,500). CMF is a volunteer organization with two income revenue sources. First are regular, fun-filled events held through the year. Drag brunches, tea dances, family days, drag shows and more grace the calendar landscape. Second are donations obtained through becoming a CMF friend, host, sponsor or benefactor. A recurring payment plan for as little as $12.50 a month is available to those who wish to space out their contributions. Online one-click pledges are also accepted. And, sponsorships are an important part of securing ongoing funds as well. Chairs for the CMF Queens XXXII Gala held later in the year are Kurt Hurelbrink and Dan Woodard. The court is comprised of Kevin Barker, Ryan Blackwell, Burton Buffaloe, Brad Deaton, Jill Donovan, Michael Evans, Andrew Farr, Paul Finger,

Joshua Grice, T. L. Hall, Arthur Jordan, Steven Norris, Pink Persons, Gary Roundtree, Beren South, Coleman Temple, Melissa Williams, William “Rabbit” Wood and LiChun Young. For more information, visit — L.M.

Western Award recipients announced

HICKORY — ALFA held its annual volunteer awards reception on April 24 at St. Andrews Lutheran Church, 629 8th St. This was part of ALFA’s observance of National Volunteer Week. Those who were honored were: Hickory Jaycee’s, Distinguished Business Philanthropist; Sylvia Yang, Angel Award; D.W. Bentley, Consumer Advocate Volunteer; Michelle Mathis, Candlelight Award; William “Bill” Morgan, Distinguished Board Member; and Leslie Cothren, Steve Yount Memorial Award. Honorable Mention certificates were to Renaye Chapman, Hobie McMillan, Jason Winkler, Eric Underwood, Beth Mahaffey and Kent Kersey. For more information, visit — L.M.

Aiken, others champion battle against Amendment One Photo Credit: The Charlotte Observer

RALEIGH — Clay Aiken, season two runner up on “American Idol” and a contestant on “Celebrity Apprentice” shared his disdain about the Amendment One measure that will appear on the ballot on May 8. In an interview with The Charlotte Observer, Aiken, who professes to be a born-again Christian, had a “backlash from many who share his evangelical roots after he cam out.” Since then he has received support from Faye Parker, his mother, and his U.S. Marine brother. He also said that with education about Amendment One, many change their minds about voting for the measure. “For me and for most people, the fight is not a selfish one. I’d be remiss if I tried to make it about just me or just my situation. It’s much bigger than me,” he added. Aiken’s tenure on “Celebrity Apprentice” so far appears to be a successful venture. He indicates that he has a great deal of respect for Donald Trump, but has not approached this multimillionaire about his impression of Amendment One. Aiken shared that Trump was a “prime example of the type of people we need to reach in order to make sure the amendment doesn’t pass.” Getting voters to the polls to vote against the measure is the top priority from now until the primary, Aiken added. To read the entire story, visit Across the state in Hickory, MItchell Gold, founder and CEO of Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams, spoke out at a commission meeting where they were voting on a resolution to support the amendment. The Hickory Daily Record reported that there was a split decision on the resolution. People on opposing sides came to share their views on the matter, either for or against. Gold said, “Make no mistake what tonight is about. It is the preservation of bigotry.” Heading over to the mountains, The Citizen-Times announced that television viewers there and across the state would soon begin to see ads from both factions.

National/Global Scouts force mom out

BRIDGEPORT, Ohio — Lesbian mom Jennifer Tyrrell learned April 10 that she would no longer be able to serve as a den leader of her son’s Cub Scout troop because of her sexual orientation. In response, parents and scouts from the troop held a peaceful protest outside of the local BSA chapter the following week to show their support for Tyrrell. At press time, the district council is refusing to back away from the Scout’s official policy of discriminating against LGBT members and leaders. On her petition calling on the BSA to repeal their anti-gay policy, Tyrrell noted, “Shortly after registering my son for Cub Scouts, I was asked to assume the role of den leader and was persuaded by a platform of tolerance, acceptance and support. Throughout the year, my cubs performed volunteer service at a local soup kitchen, collected canned goods for area churches to distribute in food baskets, participated in bell-ringing for the Salvation Army, and, at the time of my removal, were working on a conservation project for a state park.” Dana Rudolph, founder and publisher of popular LGBT parenting blog Mombian, said, “Lesbian and gay parents have proven themselves time and time again to be dedicated, caring and trustworthy Scout leaders and volunteers, as evidenced by Jennifer and

The news source said that pro-amendment Vote for Marriage NC had “paid for 17 spots on WLOS beginning on April 30,” forking over $21,000. shared that Todd Stiefel, a Tar Heel philanthropist and straight ally was pledging to match every dollar up to $100,000 contributed to the Coalition. Monies will help fund television spots. The ads began on April 23 from anti-amendment Coalition to Protect All NC Families. They are also soliciting funds from other resources to carry their message on television. Web commentary is already online from former Charlotte Mayors Harvey Gantt (D) and Richard Vinroot (R). Visit to hear their comments, along with Gov. Beverly Perdue and a parody from the Coalition. Additional support has been garnered from the corporate world in the face of Duke Energy CEO Jim Rogers. Although not officially from his employer, he has said that a state that is not inclusive is bad business. The New Bern Board of Alderman recently showed their support of the ballot measure by passing a resolution 5-2, the New Bern Sun Journal reported. On April 20, Jay Bakker, son of televangelists Jim and the late Tammy Faye Bakker, was in the Tar Heel State speaking out against Amendment One. He visited Charlotte and Durham to attend early voting rallies. Bakker is the first person to receive the Straight For Equality in Faith Communities Award from the national PFLAG organization. An AP report said, “Bakker said though his parents didn’t always bring favorable attention to North Carolina, they taught him that Jesus’s message was to love others.” Gay men with AIDS were embraced by his mother. The Winston-Salem Journal reported that the Rev. William Barber, the North Carolina president of the NAACP, spoke against the amendment in Winston-Salem at Winston-Salem State University’s chapter of the NAACP. He said, “You should disagree with anybody who is writing hatred and discrimination into the constitution.” He also shared that the amendment violated the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution which “guarantees equal legal protections for all people.” For ways to support the charge against theanti-gay   amendment, visit — L.M.

many others who have served in welcoming local Scout groups.” — D.S.

her driver’s license match her “lived gender expression of identity.” — D.S.

Trans woman trumps DMV

Video challenge announced

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — In early 2011, the Alaska Division of Motor Vehicles stopped changing the sex on transgender citizens’ licenses without proof of surgical transition, risky and expensive surgery that is unnecessary for, and unwanted by, many trans people. On March 12, a Superior Court ruling held that this practice is unconstitutional. Since 2009, plaintiff K.L., who was designated male at birth, has lived and presented full-time as a woman. She makes her living as a pilot and her employer and co-workers have supported her transition and accept her as a woman. As part of her transition, she changed the sex on her airman certificate, work identification and passport. She also asked the DMV to change the sex designation on her license. After a new one was issued, she received a letter telling her to return it or prove that she had undergone certain surgeries. Her subsequent legal appeal led to the decision. The court concluded that the DMV’s policy violated K.L.’s privacy by forcing her to reveal private information every time she shows her license. According to the ACLU, this is the only time a U.S. court has recognized a trans person’s constitutionally protected privacy interests in having the sex designation on

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Pride Month “Champions of Change” Video Challenge has been announced by President Barak Obama’s administration. The series “spotlights everyday heroes who are demonstrating commitment to improving their own communities, their country, or the lives of their fellow citizens,” the White House website stated. Submissions are due online by May 4. They will be reviewed by a panel where semifinalists will be chosen. In early June, the public will be able to vote on their favorite. Categories include: storytelling; culture and identity; unsung heroes; the arts; social entrepreneurship and innovation; community solutions; and friends and allies. Videos will be accepted in any form (i.e., music video, PSA, short film, video blog, interview) and must be no longer than three minutes. Essays should be no longer than 750 words if video production is not possible. For more information or to submit, visit  champions-change-video-challenge. — L.M.

Marriage a low voter concern

WASHINGTON, D.C. — New data from the

Pew Research Center shows marriage equality ranks last among the top concerns of voters ahead of the 2012 elections. “Americans care about job creation and providing for their families. This latest data reinforces the fact that supporting LGBT equality is not a divisive wedge issue, but rather just common sense,” said Human Rights Campaign President Joe Solmonese. The Pew poll identified the economy, jobs and the budget deficit as weighing most heavily on voters’ minds. Other issues of importance include healthcare, education, energy, taxes, terrorism, and the environment. The poll is just the latest piece of evidence pointing to Americans’ increasing support for LGBT equality. A 2011 Gallup poll found 53 percent of Americans support same-sex marriage rights; in addition, a Greenberg Quinlan Rosner poll recently found that an astounding 85 percent of people of faith say their religious beliefs lead them to the conclusion that LGBT people should be treated equally under the law. — D.S.

Second service member reinstated

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Staff Sergeant Anthony Loverde, discharged in 2008 under “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” will be reinstated in the U.S. Air Force and return to active duty next month. He will take the oath in Sacramento in May and be assigned to the 19th Operations Squadron at Little Rock AFB in Arkansas. The reinstatement will make Loverde the second service member reinstated following the repeal of DADT in September 2011. “I am honored and humbled to return to the service of my country and the job I love. I am grateful to my legal team and all of those in the armed forces who helped to facilitate this reinstatement. I am eager to take the oath and get to work,” said Loverde. Loverde’s reinstatement is the result of a resolution on his behalf in the historic case, Almy v. U.S., filed in 2010, which challenges the constitutionality of three plaintiffs’ discharges under DADT. A resolution was reached in December 2011 on behalf of Petty Officer 2nd Class Jase Daniels, who was reinstated in the U.S. Navy as a linguist. A resolution on behalf of the third plaintiff in the case, former Air Force Major Mike Almy, is expected soon. — D.S.

Queer history conference set

AMSTERDAM, The Netherlands — The International Archives, Libraries, Museums and Special Collections Conference on the Future of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Histories (LGBTI ALMS 2012) will be held here Aug. 1-3. The conference, hosted by IHLIA, the International Gay and Lesbian Archive and Information Center, aims to bring together institutions from around the globe to make the history of LGBTI people visible and accessible to all. A press release for the conference states, “We envision that by 2020 the heritage of LGBTI individuals and the LGBTI community is collected and recognized in Europe and globally as part of the cultural wealth of society.” Organizers say they hope the conference will help: consolidate our knowledge of archiving as a tool in building democratic and free societies; strengthen the global network of LGBTI organizations that collect our histories and make them available to the public; and, advance the practice of collecting oral histories, an invaluable way of recording the life stories of LGBTI people. — D.S.

April 28-May 11 . 2012



‘Da Baddest Chick’ is coming to town Trina to headline Pride Charlotte 2012 by O’Neale Atkinson ::


ride Charlotte 2011 was the biggest Pride event the Queen City has ever seen and it looks like 2012 will be even bigger. The sixth annual Pride Charlotte festival was held on August 27, 2011, on Tryon St. An estimated 27,000-plus people attended the one-day festival, doubling the number of participants from the previous year. Despite some concerns that the more public venue would increase opposition to the festival, the day went extremely smoothy with minimal disruptions from protestors. Beautiful weather, great entertainment, a variety of supportive vendors and sponsors helped to bring the celebration to a whole new level. This year the celebration is expanding to a two-day festival for the first time in its history and will once again be held in the heart of Uptown. Even though we are still four months away from the event, Pride Charlotte


April 28-May 11 . 2012

has already announced their headliner for the festival and this one is sure to turn heads. Known by many as Miami’s own “Diamond Princess,” or for older fans as “Da Baddest Chick,” Katrina “Trina” Taylor is set to perform in Charlotte. “We couldn’t be more excited for Trina’s headlining performance at the Queen City’s annual Pride Charlotte Festival,” said Jonathan Hill, Pride Charlotte entertainment chair. “As headliner, Trina’s lyrical artistry and her star power will be the highlight of two full days of local, regional and national entertainment and community empowerment, celebrating the strength and diversity of Charlotte’s LGBT community.” This will be the first time a chart topping artist of this size and recognition has taken part in Pride Charlotte, a marker of growth and suc-

see Trina on 26

April 28-May 11 . 2012



transilluminations by eva hayward qnotes contributor

Toxic sex

Issuing a sex panic over the last several years, National Geographic published a spate of articles with titles such as “Female Fish Develop ‘Testes’ in Gulf Dead Zone,” “Sex-Changing Chemicals Found in Potomac River,” “Mercury Poisoning Makes Birds Act Homosexual,” “Animals’ Sexual Changes Linked to Waste, Chemicals,” that connect pollution to the undermining of sexual differences. The issues in these write-ups are serious, but the titles sound like science fiction accounts of gonadal “deformities” and sex mutations that are more sensational than sincere. It’s true that organisms are responding to changes in their environments. Polar bears, alligators, frogs, mollusks, fish and birds: hormone-altering pollutants have affected more than 200 animal species around the world. The Scientific Committee on Problems in the Environment (SCOPE) and the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) based in North Carolina, have been diligently investigating the impact of endocrine active substances, which are known to alter reproduction in organisms. The new SCOPEIUPAC report says endocrine disruption can be expected in all animals in which hormones initiate physical change, including humans. Other instances of “unnatural” sexes have appeared in low-oxygen zones in the Gulf of Mexico, where female Atlantic croaker

fish are developing testes instead of ovaries. The masculine females are not known to fertilize other female eggs. However, in the Potomac River, chemicals from industrial and residential sources have caused male bass to produce eggs that can be fertilized by their former gender mates. At worst, changes in the reproductive cycle of fish can decimate populations, but as these bass teach us, perhaps other futures are possible. I wonder how we can continue to develop proactive politics about toxic substances and their effects on vulnerable people and animals without appealing to society’s basest fears about sexual disruption. Can we engender environmental responsibility without invoking anxiety that our most intimate reproductive environments have been infiltrated by an industrial world? Fear of impending gender perversions is simply queer-fear and fails to address the broader consequences of pollution. The headline “Kermit to Kermette” is lurid, but while the herbicide Atrazine causes hermaphroditism in frogs, exposure to carcinogens, neurotoxins, asthmagens and mutagens affects all of us; it is the reality of our everyday lives. The possibility of cancer, diabetes, immune system breakdown and heart disease are a few of the bodily crises that we all face. These more common diseases, many of which are environmentally induced, are killing people and other animals in alarmingly high numbers. This ought to be our rallying call rather than a cri de coeur — a cry from the heart — about degenerate sexes. Is there a way to re-evaluate ecological resilience — such as the sex-changing response — and meet the future organisms that we are all becoming? This is not an easy question and probably has no single answer, but it is a crucial place to begin. Watching the planet slide into catastrophe is traumatic. Deniers of climate change and environmental destruction are merely reacting — however, negligently — to the effects of crisis. How do any of us cope with shock? Denial is no more or less dangerous than proclaiming Armageddon. I am not suggesting that we encourage denial, but we have to understand the force of this fear. It isn’t so much that disaster awaits us, but rather that we are already living in ruination. Eden is dirty. Industrialism has released its progeny through the garden gates. Things can get worse, and probably will, but life for earthlings is already dire. We may think of nature as self-evident, but it is not. The wilderness and the natural are historically constructed notions. Since the Victorians, these wild places have been imagined as locations of health and moral uplift against the perversions of urban environments. For example: John Muir, founder of the Sierra Club, advocated that the industrialized cities of the East were “polluted” by non-European immigrants, making necessary “clean” spaces for white Americans. It is also no surprise that by the late 19th century women were entering the industrial labor force in urban centers — gender was also becoming

see Transilluminations on 19



April 28-May 11 . 2012


Embrace Release Amendment One and my family by Aly Windsor :: guest contributor

On May 8th, my neighbors, my mom and sister and brother and aunts and grandma, my postal worker, my landlord, my local firefighters, the checkout people and the manager and the baker from the grocery store, the old drunk but friendly guy who walks up and down our street all day long, other parents at the playground, drivers beside and around me at any given stoplight, and many thousands of people I will never see or meet will have the opportunity to vote on the validity of my marriage. Some will stay home because they don’t feel passionately one way or another, or they’ll be too busy with their valid marriages and recognized families to weigh in. I’m not going to write about all of the possible consequences of the amendment passing, including those for straight people and unmarried couples and their children, because to me it should be enough that it’s wrong for voters to literally deem thousands of same-sex couples’ relationships invalid. Instead, I’m going to tell you about us. My partner and I have been together for seven years. We have two kids, and moved to Winston-Salem from Georgia last year after my partner was offered a professor position at a local college. Even though we left good friends and a comfortable-for-our-family social climate behind in Atlanta, we were so thrilled to leave the big city for beautiful North Carolina where the majority of my extended

Meeting Date: Program: Time: Cost:


family lives. We’re now an hour and a half away by car from my mom and aunt whom our boys adore. We love being able to take a Sunday drive to see them, and do it often. You can imagine our dismay then, when only a month after we moved here, the North Carolina legislature voted to put Amendment One on the spring 2012 primary ballot. On a typical day in our lives, the baby wakes up at seven. I blearily roll out of bed to change his diaper. On my way, I turn off the hall light that was on all night in case our older son made his way from his bedroom to ours. Then I let the dogs outside, start the coffee, and fire up my computer while the baby chases the cat faster on his hands and knees than I can move on two legs before coffee. Minutes later, our older son bounds out of our room and wants to “WATCH VIDEOS!” or “GO TO THE MUSEUM!” or “EAT 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 9 WAFFLES!” I cajole him into using the potty and putting on big kid underpants. My partner washes dishes from the night before while I make breakfast. After we eat, I check Facebook and email and focus for a little while on my part-time, work-from-home gig. When I finish, my partner and I trade off the kids so we can each get ready for the day. One of us feeds the dogs. My partner leaves for work. The kids and I meet our playgroup at a local park. After a couple of hours of my older son charging around recklessly, incur-

ring and inflicting countless boo-boos, while the baby stuffs mulch and other inedibles in his mouth and I hang him upside down and do finger sweeps trying not to panic, we go home for lunch and naps. After naps, there might be painting or coloring or playing out back. My partner arrives home around 5:30, except for the very long days when I’m on my own until 9:30. On the short days, I cook while the boys jump on our bed with my partner. On the very, very long ones, I cook alone while my older son watches “Sesame Street,” the baby raids the cabinets, and I drink a well-deserved glass of wine. Bedtime is complicated. Our older son has never been an easy sleeper. After coerced teeth-brushing and pajama wrangling, my partner or I read aloud to him in his big kid bed, and then hold his hand while reading in the dark with a tiny book light until he falls asleep, at which point we creep out of his room, praying he’ll stay asleep. The baby has been an easier sleeper from the start but with new teeth coming in, he’s taking a lot longer to settle. When they’re finally both asleep, my partner and I collapse on the couch to talk. Some nights we’re too tired to do anything but lose ourselves together in DVR-ed “Survivor” or “American Idol.” On the weekends, our mornings are the

see Embrace on 16

Tuesday, May 15, 2012 Special Event, Matt Martin Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, Charlotte Division 530 East Trade St. 5:30-8 p.m. $20. Includes apptizer, dinner, dessert, tea. Parking across Trade St. in Preferred Parking lot, fee applied Advance reservations required. email or reserve/pay in advance online on RSVP must be received one week in advance. Attendees must present photo ID.

April 28-May 11 . 2012




Adoption’s an option for same-sex couples A look into the adoption process for LGBT families by Helene Nathanson :: special to qnotes

When I was looking for a job 15 years ago, with my newly-minted graduate degree, I was willing to take any counseling position that allowed me to be home after school for my children. One of the jobs I pursued was that of a contract social worker for an adoption homestudy agency in Raleigh. This was quite an attractive job in that it offered flexible hours, a positive client population and a decent salary. There were many applicants applying for this position. Out of all of those applicants, some with extensive adoption experience, I was selected. Why? My selection was because I answered one question correctly. The question; you guessed it,”Will you work with same-sex couples?” Seems this agency did not have any Charlotte area social workers who were willing to work with same-sex couples. Fast forward 15 years later to 2012. Is this level of prejudice and homophobia present in today’s adoption community? The answer is, not at that level, but in some circumstances you may find discrimination. Despite some instances of discrimination, I am delighted to report that it is very possible to successfully adopt as a same-sex couple today. The most important factors in achieving this goal are in selecting excellent gay friendly agencies. Very simply, there are three possible adoption venues: 1. Private adoption – either through a   child-placing agency, an attorney, or an independent source. 2. DSS (Department of Social Services) adoption, utilizing a social services program either within or outside of your county. 3. International Adoption – adopting a child from outside the United States. In this article I will focus on the private adoption which is most commonly utilized by many same-sex couples. In order to pursue any adoption, you will need a homestudy from a homestudy agency licensed in your state. Typically couples interested in adoption will then utilize a separate child-placing agency which can be located out of state. You may also choose to hire an adoption facilitator or consultant who can help you find appropriate adoption opportunities. As a gay couple, you will want to screen any potential agency carefully to determine if they will be a good fit for you. Always be honest. Ask potential agencies the following questions: • Do you work with same-sex couples? • If yes, has it presented you with any   particular problems?

• How many have you worked with in the   past year? • How many have successfully adopted? • Can you give me a reference of another same-sex couple with whom you’ve worked? Check out the Human Rights Campaign’s website for a list of gay-friendly agencies. Ask friends for the names of agencies they have used. I caution my clients that often agencies that are faith-based are not gay-friendly, but this is not true in all cases. The best way to find out is to ask questions! You will find some agencies that are not a good fit for your family. However, there are plenty of excellent, gay-friendly facilitators and child-placing agencies throughout the country. In North Carolina, there are a few gay-friendly homestudy agencies, such as ours, Nathanson Adoption Services. When we work with a same-sex couple we can recommend specific gay-friendly child placing agencies and facilitators. After placement of their child, we ask for feedback on these entities and utilize that information for future clients. New clients of mine, Jason and Sheldon, are just getting started with their adoption homestudy. I’ve referred them to a highly professional gay-friendly facilitator and a few gay-friendly child placing agencies. I have also warned them about some gay-friendly agencies that are not ethical. Once you ascertain that an agency is gay-friendly, you will still want to check them out to ensure that they will do a good job for you. Recently, Jason said, “What a surprise! Everyone I spoke to was so nice and encouraging about our adoption plans.” I’m confident this couple will become parents within the next 9-12 months. : : info: Helene M. Nathanson, MHDL, is the Executive Director and founder of Nathanson Adoption Services. Prior to forming these agencies, Helene provided adoption counseling, home study and postplacement services as a social worker for several North Carolina adoption agencies. She has taught seminars on adoptive parent preparation and education on behalf of various adoption agencies and adoptive parent support groups. She is a frequent presenter throughout North Carolina on adoption topics concerning both international and domestic adoption, and has appeared many times on television and radio programs.

Vote Against! Vote Against! Vote Against!

Amendment One • May 8 It’s bad for families, it’s bad for business, it’s bad for the LGBT community, it’s bad for seniors, it’s bad for couples, it harms children, it’s discriminatory, Visit to learn more!



April 28-May 11 . 2012


MeckPAC releases primary endorsements 11 candidates endorsed in at-large, district county commission races compiled by qnotes staff

The Mecklenburg LGBT Political Action Committee (MeckPAC) has published its slate of endorsements and other voter information for the May 8, 2012, primary election of at-large and district Mecklenburg Board of County Commissioner races. Eleven candidates received endorsements and several across party lines were noted as “receptive” on LGBT issues. Several candidates also opted not to return MeckPAC’s questionnaire, which ranks candidates positions on several LGBT issues at the county level. Endorsed candidates include at-large Democratic competitors Paul Brown, Pat Cothan, Jyoti Friedland, Marc Gustufson and Gregory Hunt. Jason Bateman, an atlarge Libertarian candidate, was also endorsed. In district races, MeckPAC endorsed Democrats Vilma Leake (District 2), George Dunlap (District 3), Dumont Clarke (District 4), Paula Harvey (District 5) and Connie Green-Johnson (District 6). Two candidates received warnings from the local political action group. MeckPAC strongly encouraged voters not to vote for incumbent Republican Commissioners Karen Bentley (District 1) and Bill James (District 6). Bentley and James both have a lengthy and outspoken anti-gay record. Bentley is running unopposed in her District 1 GOP primary. For the first time in a decade, James faces competition from inside his own party; challenger Ed Driggs did not return a MeckPAC questionnaire. MeckPAC is a nonprofit and nonpartisan organization. MeckPAC evaluates candidates in city and county elections and evaluates them on their responses to questionnaires, in-person interviews, and other criteria including past performance when applicable. The group’s ratings do not take into account where candidates might stand on issues other than those directly related to LGBT equality. MeckPAC is registered with the Mecklenburg County Board of Elections and therefore involves itself only in political advocacy with city and county government in Charlotte and Mecklenburg County. Specifically the organization focuses on Charlotte City Council and Mayor, Mecklenburg County Commission and Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education. In the May 8 Primary Election, Mecklenburg County Commission is the only one of these local governing bodies on the ballot. To find out which County Commission district you live in, go to Learn more about MeckPAC and download its 2012 primary election voter guide at : :

√ ENDORSE = MeckPAC strongly encourages you to vote for this candidate. Receptive = This candidate expresses some level of support for LGBT equality. WARNING = MeckPAC strongly discourages support for this candidate. No Response = Candidate did not respond to MeckPAC’s questionnaire. No Contact Info – No email contact information for the candidate was found on the Board of Elections site.

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compiled by O’Neale Atkinson ::


he introduction of Amendment One to North Carolina in September of 2011 has sparked a dialogue across the state both for and against the proposed legislation. In a state where same-sex marriage is already unrecognized, the amendment would ban legal recognition for all unmarried couples, regardless of sexual orientation, and strip protections already in place for thousands of North Carolinians and their children. What on the surface appears to be a piece of legislation that serves to further marginalize same-sex couples will have far-reaching effects on issues of child custody, domestic violence protection laws and legal issues such as power of attorney rights. Proponents of the amendment defend their stance by saying it is to protect the definition of a family and a marriage as a union between one man and one woman. The reality is that this definition is dated and does not accurately represent what a family is today. Gone are the days when the nuclear family (think classic TV families such as The Cleaver’s from “Leave it to Beaver”) represents the norm in terms of a modern family structure. Today families come in all shapes and sizes; married couples, unmarried couples, long-term friends living together, same-sex couples, mixed families and adopted families are only a few of the ways in which people cohabitate. Television has always served to emulate reality through their programming and ABC’s “Modern Family” offers a more realistic perspective of what America looks like today; sure we don’t all live in fabulous homes in the Los Angeles suburbs, but you get the idea. We are a mixture of different make-ups of families. The unifying theme that defines a family, regardless of its makeup, is love. In September 2011 Justin Cook began a documentary project photographing long-term committed same sex couples and interviewing them to learn their stories. He hoped to show the public that these families are normal people with real love and real lives, so better decisions could be made on May 8. Cook was not alone in his passion to tell the stories of the many families who will be impacted by Amendment One and he soon partnered with “LOVE FOR ALL,” a similar proj-

ect by Lisa Gotwals and her group of photographers known as CLACK. They have since joined forces and created COMMITMENT | NC, a project which brings these families’ stories to life through images and word. 25 years and still going strong

In 2007 qnotes featured a story about Wesley Thompson and Trey Owens and their struggle as Owens was diagnosed with a rare form of Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia. The couple has recently been featured in the COMMITMENT | NC project and their love is still as strong as it was from the beginning. The couple initially had to set up powers of attorney, both living will and healthcare proxy, as well as last will and testaments in an effort to establish one another in each other’s lives. “We had to spend thousands to be granted what a married couple automatically is granted through the act of marriage” says Thompson. Following Owen’s battle with Leukemia, the two


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were engaged to be married in the summer of 2006 while attending his oldest brother’s fifth wedding. “Trey asked me if I would still marry him” Thompson recounts. “I had asked him 10 years earlier and he declined, stating there was no benefit to it. He felt that if his brother could get married in the church with God’s blessing five times, we could at least get married once.” The two held their wedding in Vancouver, BC on their 20th anniversary, down to the hour they met, 7 p.m. on Nov. 18, 2006. When looking at legislation such as Amendment One, Thompson tends to take a religious angle in his discussions about the topic. “Amendment One is a thinly-veiled religious movement based on the supposed teachings of Jesus; however, Jesus never mentioned same-sex marriage nor did He mention homosexuality. He did, however, discuss divorce. Why is divorce not being addressed as an assault on the sanctity of marriage?” You can read qnotes’ original story about Wes and Trey online at Their story was also shared on Elaine, Annika and William In April of 2010 Elaine and Annika decided to adopt. They had first become foster parents and were open to the idea of adopting. Initially, the two attempted to adopt an older child from an orphanage outside of the United States, but they were denied because they are a same-sex couple. The two had heard of couples who were able to adopt from foreign countries by one partner filing for an adoption as a single person, but Elaine and Annika wanted to be honest throughout the entire process. The two researched agencies that were gay-friendly and through the Human Rights Campaign’s website they were able to find agencies that would work with same-sex couples. “We ended up choosing AdoptHelp in California and had a reasonable good experience” Annika reported. “Enough so that we are using them again for a second adoption.” Even while working with same-sex friendly agencies, the two still faced problems in trying to adopt. Ultimately, only Elaine or Annika could adopt their child. Annika was the adoptive parent which left Elaine a legal stranger to their son William. In order for both of them to have legal protections over their child, Elaine had to sue Annika for partial custody of William. This was if something happened to Annika, Elaine would have the legal right to keep William and pursue her own adoption of him. They also had to have a child’s medical power of attorney drawn up so that Elaine could make medical decisions for him. Despite these frustrations, Elaine and Annika have already begun the process for their second adoption and they are prepared for whatever comes ahead. Annika believes that legislation like Amendment One is a means to send a message across the country that the people as a whole do not want gay marriage. “It’s destructive in many respects, but if it passes, it will not have an immediate effect on my family. Same-sex marriage is already not permitted in NC. Same-sex adoption is already not permitted in NC. We already have no rights, so there’s not much they can take away. The harshest impact, for us, is the message of hate that it will send, making us feel more marginalized and hated by the voting majority.” Annika and Elaine have been together for seven years. — To read more stories about other families like these, visit To learn how Amendment One could impact families, visit

A houseful of love [Ed. Note: Adam and John are pseudonyms used at the request of the family.] Adam and John have been together as a loving and committed couple for 10 years and have four children that they adore. Early on in their relationship, the two discussed the idea of adoption. Adam was in a previous long-term relationship of 14 years where his previous male partner had two biological daughters. Adam wanted to be able to share the special bond he witnessed between his previous partner and his biological children with his love, John. Prior to their attempt at adoption, John thought the notion would not be remotely possible, especially in NC where same-sex adoptions and marriages are not recognized. For Adam and John, all four of their adoptions happened under different circumstances. “All of our adoptions were unique” says John. “They actually all seem to have found us. They are all very wonderful gifts that we never in a thousand years expected.” Their first son came through the NC Foster-to-adopt system. “We had excellent support from our local licensing agency, Lutheran Family Services, as well as Mecklenburg County Court and Guardian Ad-Litem” recalls John. Their second son was a designated adoption from a friend of a friend. The birth mother was very young and wanted to place her child for adoption at birth. Adam and John’s third son was an agency adoption. According to John, their experience with the adoption process and working with Adoption Information Services went smoothly and was very encouraging for them. Their fourth son was an unexpected adoption request from the same agency they worked with for their third adoption. The adoption specialist from their third son was working with another girl at the time who was looking for a family to adopt her child. The specialist reached out to Adam and John to see if they were interested. With Amendment One looming overhead, the couple is concerned about its implications for the state and for other families like theirs. “The biggest fear is with insurance coverage. Not so much with our family since we have a unique situation where we are covered under a single plan” says John. “We are, however, totally opposed to the inference that only a married heterosexual couple has worth. In our opinion this legislation should never have seen the light of day! This proposed amendment is divisive, exclusionary and far oversteps any sort of fair, just or equal representation for all people.”


A look into the lives of those who will be impacted by Amendment One

Constitutional amendment to provide that marriage between one man and one woman is the only domestic legal union that shall be valid or recognized in this State. —Progressives and allies say no and urge those who go to the polls to vote against the Amendment One measure.

Modern families

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Embrace Release continued from page 11

same except that I sometimes attempt pancakes. Later we go “exploring for bears,” grocery-shop, my partner mows the lawn, we tend to our growing garden as our older son digs for worms and the baby sneaks grass into his mouth, and my partner and I attempt meaningful conversation over the constant din of a shouting toddler and a screeching baby. Some days and weeks are hard and long, full of tantrums and sickness and bad news. Others are soft and light and seem to dreamily zoom past. We’re thinking about buying a house but as we drive around pondering our options, we worry about the usual stuff: What if we get into a loan we can’t afford? Will the house appreciate? We also worry about not only the education quality of the local schools but whether our boys will feel comfortable in them. Will they be bullied for having same-sex parents? We wonder if prospective neighbors will be dismayed to have a same-sex couple with children move in next door. What if we buy only to find that we’re not wanted in our own cul-de-sac? As we drive around, my heart skips and swells every time a I see a “Vote Against Amendment One” yard sign, but deflates every time I spot a “Vote For.” Here’s what we hope and dream for our future: we want our boys to become kind, smart, and capable people. We want my partner’s professional career to continue to develop. I want a room of my own to pursue a Writer’s life, or at least to find a way to contribute to our family income with my writing. My partner supports this dream. I want chickens too and my partner is fine with that as long as we wait until our current herd of pets passes on. Mostly, we just want to stay healthy, stick together, grow together, and support each other until the end of our days. No matter how hard I squint, I cannot figure out what’s so threatening about this little life of ours. I believe in compassion and accepting people different from me so I have spent a lot of mental energy puzzling over the motivations of people who would vote to invalidate our family. I understand those who object to us mainly do so on the basis of their



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religious beliefs. I affirm that these people are entitled to their religious beliefs but I do not understand why my fellow citizens’ religious beliefs dictate how our government classifies my marriage and family. Why does my neighbor get a say over who is eligible to be my valid life partner? Why do other people get to vote at all on my access to the same legal rights and privileges they’re free to enjoy without a referendum? My family will be glued to the TV screen on May 8th, anxiously watching the voting numbers roll in. At the end of the day, or when the tipping point is reached, we will either be crushed or buoyed by the results. If Amendment One passes, and I fear it will, for us there will be that initial gut punch, then tears, and then a burning rage at all of those people in our community who voted for it. This rage will slowly simmer down to a low boil on the back burner of our busy lives. I know this because a similar amendment passed in Georgia in 2004. Three years later, we stood before family and friends and had a beautiful wedding anyway. No amendment or law could or will stop us from staying committed to each other and our little family. Whether or not the people of my state judge our marriage to be invalid or unworthy of being recognized on May 8th, on May 9th, we will wake up around seven. I’ll probably be tired and grumpy from nursing a teething baby through the night but I’ll make the coffee and get breakfast going anyway. Four days later, my partner and I will celebrate our fifth wedding anniversary. We might get to go on a date if my mom and aunt can drive over to babysit. That same month, our boys will turn three and one. The baby will likely be walking by then, and suddenly having two independently ambulatory kids will bring a host of new, more pressing problems to worry about. To see more about Aly and her family, visit her blog at : :


A mile in someone else’s shoes RAIN celebrates 16th annual AIDS Walk Charlotte by o’neale atkinson ::

On May 5 thousands of individuals will come together in Charlotte to walk roughly two miles through Charlotte’s 4th Ward in honor of those who are impacted by HIV and AIDS. This year’s Walk will mark the 16th anniversary of the event and serves as a way to illustrate the support for those in the community living with HIV and AIDS. All of the money raised during the Walk will go to support Regional AIDS Interfaith Network (RAIN) and their work here in the Charlotte area.

Founded in 1992 by Rev. Deborah Warren with the help of concerned volunteers, RAIN originally served as a means to change the stigma surrounding HIV and AIDS in the early 1990s and to ensure that people dying from AIDS would not die alone. Since then the understanding of HIV and AIDS, as well as its treatment possibilities, have evolved and so has the organization. According to their website, RAIN’s mission is “to transform lives

and promote respect and dignity for all people touched by HIV through compassionate care, education and leadership development.” Since the founding of RAIN in 1992, the organization reports that they have been able to provide over 150,000 hours of service to over 1,100 individuals living with HIV and AIDS. RAIN also serves to educate the community about HIV and AIDS prevention through awareness programs and initiatives. Over 50,000 people have been educated through their programming. RAIN has received numerous awards through the years for their dedication and service to removing the stigma surrounding HIV and AIDS within the community and providing direct client services to individuals living with HIV and AIDS. During the 2012 Human Rights Campaign North Carolina Gala, Warren was honored as the HRC NC Legacy Award Recipient for her years of dedication to this cause. The 2012 AIDS Walk Charlotte will be held at Gateway Atrium Village, 800 W. Trade St. Registration and check-in will begin at 8 a.m. and will be followed by a morning program

A participant in last year’s AIDS Walk checks over his pledge sheet prior to the start of the event.

and awards ceremony at 9:30 a.m. The Walk itself will begin at 10 a.m. and walkers will travel roughly two miles through Charlotte’s historic Fourth Ward. The walk is expected to take less than an hour with a closing ceremony to follow. “AIDS Walk Charlotte is a true celebration of life — it’s our community’s celebration. We gather together to celebrate the life of those who have finished their journey and to celebrate the life of those who are still with us,” says Nathan Smith, director of development and marketing for RAIN. “I read somewhere that an AIDS Walk is a public prayer in action. I would agree, AIDS Walk Charlotte is truly just that.”

see RAIN on 18

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RAIN to host annual AIDS Walk continued from page 17

There is still plenty of time to support RAIN and take part in this year’s Walk. Individuals can sign up through their website ( One can also choose to become a team captain and recruit friends, family and co-workers to join together and walk in support of this cause. Individuals, too, can join existing teams and walk together with other organizations to show support. The AIDS Walk website provides thorough information and an easy-to-use interface on how to promote participation to friends and family through other social media sites (such as Facebook). Utilizing their website and tools makes it easy for groups to organize and raise awareness around the Walk. For those who can’t make the AIDS Walk Charlotte or don’t want to wake up early, join the effort as a Sleep Walker. There is no fee to register as a Sleep Walker, however participants are encour-



aged to raise a minimum of $100. For the ambitious walkers who want to strive to make a large impact, register to become a Social Justice Climber. The group, made up of individuals committed to raising at least $1,250, is transforming the community through their hard work and dedication. Climbers are entitled to a few perks, too, including an official Social Justice Climber hat, early check-in and T-shirt pick before AIDS Walk Charlotte, admission for two to a post-AIDS Walk Charlotte celebration event, listing on the AIDS Walk Charlotte website and more! For more information about RAIN, visit For more information about AIDS Walk Charlotte 2012, visit : :

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An AIDS Walk volunteer gives last-minute instructions to participants.

continued from page 10

polluted. However noble the conservation of wilderness might be, our collective investment in the natural — as a pure place — has also helped to stabilize American values of rugged individualism, masculinity, independence and moral virtue. As I think through toxic natures, I am reminded that many animals change sex on their own accord. Some marine fishes can change their sex when necessary. For example, a school of clownfish — the colorful lead character in “Finding Nemo,� 2003 — is organized around a female; she is the hierarch. When she dies, one of the males changes his sex and takes her place. And, while I was on the coast last week I saw limpets clinging to the rocky shores. Similar to the clownfish, these little snail-like creatures develop as males, but after a couple of years they change sex to become females. Sex change is not so extraordinary.

Life histories about gender-swapping bring to mind an interesting, if also troubling, article by Christine Johnson. A transgender author and administrator of the website, Johnson correlates the presence of DDT in the environment and the increase in transsexual populations. Johnson relies on the research of Dr. Gunter Dorner who advanced Rachel Carson’s original point that DDT continues to alter human reproductive systems. Now, I don’t for one second believe that a single environmental factor could explain transsexuality; the assertion is ridiculous. But, it does open the realization that bodies are lively and practical responses to environments and changing ecosystems. For Johnson, transsexuality is not a willful act or purely biological or psychological, but an adaptive response, an alteration of the “natural order� of things. Instead of toxic sex change as a sinister

force that threatens all life, it might be about reinvention, as well as about political and economic systems that affect everyone, including animals. As Bailey Keir, an environmental scholar, has proposed, the transsexual fish of the Potomac “might just be the ‘fittest’ in the dance of life and death.� Rather than denying environmental disaster or reveling in the coming apocalypse, I feel that we must embrace the wounds of the world, see their beauty, as we work toward environmental safeguards. As someone who is coping with the lifethreatening consequences of cancer and an autoimmune disorder, I prefer to think of myself as living with rather than being a victim of illness. We are all in chimeric borderlands where new forms of life are emerging. We are vulnerable to one another; our bodies are open to the planet. Perhaps, Eden needed to be destroyed in order for us to truly care for the planet. : :


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April 28-May 11 . 2012

on the map nightlife Sunday

Barbeque & Bloody Marys, Bar at 316 free BBQ from 3-6 p.m. Super Sundays with Aiesha Paris, Nickel Bar starts at 8 p.m. House Cast Show, The Scorpio with DJ 4Real. 11:30 p.m. Woodshed Sundays, The Woodshed free dinner buffet served at 6:30 p.m. karaoke, 9 p.m.


Movie Night, Bar at 316 starts at 9 p.m. Monday Madness, Chasers pool tournament at 11:30 p.m. $25 cash prize and $25 bar tab. Boxing & Monday Night Football, Sidelines Free Pool, The Woodshed all day.


Karaoke with Metro Mike, Bar at 316 starts at 9 p.m. Pool Tournament, Central Station Twisted Trivia, Chasers with Tiffany Storm & Brooklyn Dior.   Showtime at 12:30 a.m. Trivia Tuesdays, Marigny hosted by Roxxy C. Moorecox 7 p.m.

Midwood Madness, Petra’s half-price bottles of wine Karaoke, The Woodshed starts at 9 p.m.


Game Night, Bar at 316 Team Trivia and Line Dancing, Hartigan’s starts at 8 p.m. ’90s music night, Nickel Bar Karaoke, Petra’s hosted by Rachel Houdek. 9 p.m. Wicked and Wild Wednesdays, The Scorpio featuring Tiffany Storm with DJ 4Real. 11 p.m. Pool Tournament, The Woodshed starts at 10:30 p.m.


Thursday Night House Party, Bar at 316 Pool Tournament, Central Station Rockin’ Well Thursdays, Chasers with Valerie Rockwell. Show starts at 12:30 a.m. Free HIV Testing, Connections the 2nd Thursday of every month. 8-10 p.m. Karaoke Night, Hartigan’s hosted by Roxxy C. Moorecox. 9 p.m. Team Boystown, Marigny starts at 10 p.m. $10 cover after 11 p.m.   Drink-n-drown. Karaoke Night, The Rainbow In free for members. $5 guests. $6 under 21. Underwear Night, The Woodshed


House DJ and Dancing, Bar at 316 Free HIV Testing, Connections the 4th Friday of every month. 8-10 p.m. A-List Fridays, Marigny hosted by SugaWalls Entertainment. 10 p.m. Live DJ, Nickel Bar Live Performances, Petra’s Roxy’s Rainbow Review, The Rainbow In starts at 11p.m. Life’s a Drag, The Scorpio with Tiffany Storm. 11:30 p.m.

New Life MCC Worship service every Sunday, 7 p.m. Monthly covered dish dinner and   coffeehouse-style worship service on the first Sunday of every month, 6 p.m. Unity Fellowship Church of Charlotte Worship service every Sunday, 10:45 a.m. Bible 101: second and fourth Sunday of every month, 9 a.m. Wednesday night Bible study and discussion, 7 p.m.


House DJ and Dancing, Bar at 316 The Angela Lopez Show, Chasers show starts at 12:30 a.m. Live DJ, Hartigan’s Krewe Saturdays, Marigny Soul Music, Nickel Bar Live Performances, Petra’s Urban Variety Show, The Scorpio with Elaine Davis. Midnight showtime.

Congregations MCC Charlotte Worship service every Sunday, 10:45 a.m. Bible study every Tuesday and Wednesday, 7 p.m.

Community The LGBT Community Center of Charlotte Promoting the diversity, acceptance and visibility of the LGBT community through programming and events. White Rabbit North Carolina’s LGBT everything store. Complete line of Pride merchandise, plus books, magazines, DVDs, T-shirts, underwear and more. info: Don’t see your bar listed here? Submit your regularly scheduled events to

April 28-May 11 . 2012




Playing the field Match-ups from across the Carolinas by Jon Hoppel :: qnotes contributor

Welcome back to your Carolina sports review! Here’s what has been going on the past month and what is coming up in the next month. Enjoy! Softball The 30th Southern Shootout in Birmingham, Ala., took place over the Easter weekend and was competitive as ever. The field consisted of 6 B level teams, 24 C level teams and 22 D level teams — all from states throughout the Southeast. In the B division, the Atlanta Ambush took down the GATF Atlanta Crew, who improved on their third-place finish the year before.Taking the third place were the Knoxville Cyclones (B), having lost to the Crew the game before. After losing to the New Orleans Hurricanes early on the second day, the Knoxville Cyclones (C) were able to get hot and were able to take down the Hurricanes in the semifinals to avenge the loss to the Canes in the C Division. The Orlando Scrappers were able to defeat the streaking Knoxville Cyclones in extra innings with a walk off homerun in the bottom of the 8th to take a 1 run win. The D Division was the most contentious portion of the tournament. Most games were close and some bad blood arose after the team from Charlotte (Carolina Showtime) was protested for using players better than their ranking. In the end, the board and umpire agreed and the protest was deemed unfounded and was not upheld, allowing Showtime to continue in the tournament. However, Carolina was only able to claim 4th place, losing to eventual champions, Chattanooga Boogie, who beat the Tampa Pink Panthers in the finals. Taking home third for D Division was the Atlanta Traveling Ducks. Rugby The Charlotte Royals competed in the Spring Fever Invitational March 30-31, in St. Louis, Mo. The two-day tournament included teams from Madison, Wisc., Chicago, Ill., Nashville, Tenn., and Columbus, Ohio. With many of their players competing in their first tournament ever, the Royals fought hard, beating the St. Louis Crusaders 20-0 and lost a tough match in the third-place game against the Nashville Grizzlies in the playoff portion of

the event. The loss was even more disappointing due to questionable officiating and score keeping. However, the team took a lot of experience from this trek to the Midwest and hopes to take these lessons with them to Manchester and the Bingham Cup. Here are the tournament results: Elimination round  • Nashville Grizzlies 22, Columbus Coyotes 14  • Charlotte Royals 20, St. Louis Crusaders 0  Third-place match  • Nashville Grizzlies 35, Charlotte Royals 22  Championship match  Chicago Dragons 21, Madison Minotaurs 0  Final standings  1. Chicago Dragons (4-0), winners of the Golden Paddle 2. Madison Minotaurs (2-1), winners of the Silver Paddle 3. Nashville Grizzlies (2-1), winners of the Princess Paddle 4. Charlotte Royals (1-3) 5. St. Louis Crusaders (1-3) 6. Columbus Coyotes (0-3) The next games for the Royals are both home games: April 21 versus the Nashville Grizzlies for the annual Prom Dress Match fundraiser and May 5 versus the Columbus Grizzlies for the second of a home and home tilt. That match will be followed that evening with the another annual Royals tradition, the Miss Crown Royal Pageant at Hartigans. Rollgirls The Charlotte Rollergirls have started their season a little rough, losing 4 of their first 5 contests. But the team looks to be on the upswing after demolishing the Rocktown Rollers on the road, 193-68, in their last bout.They look to keep the momentum going with a road test against the Appalachian Rollergirls in Boone, N.C., April 28. That’s followed by a huge home game/double header May 5 at the Grady Cole Center. The CLTRG B Dazzlers face off against the Star City Rollergirls, followed by the CLTRG All Stars taking on the Little City Roller Girls. In conclusion, May 5, go catch the Charlotte Royals play some rugby, then head over to Grady Cole and catch the Rollergirls show you the true meaning of “hell on wheels.” They need your support! : :

xuu the DNC DNC xuu on the The 2012 Democratic National Convention (DNC) will be held during the week of Sept. 3 in Charlotte, N.C. Over 35,000 media outlets, delegates and special guests from across the country are expected to attend the convention. The purpose of the DNC is to nominate and confirm a candidate for president and vice president, as well as to adopt a comprehensive party platform and unify the party as a whole. The week of the DNC will open with a family-friendly Labor Day event at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Monday, Sept. 3. The convention’s opening session and convention proceedings will be held at Time Warner Cable Arena on Sept. 4 and 5. On Thursday, Sept. 6, President Barak Obama will accept the nomination at Bank of America Stadium. During the convention there will be a variety of arts, social and cultural events across the city for people to participate in. For more information about the 2012 DNC, events surrounding the DNC and ways to be involved, visit : :



April 28-May 11 . 2012

Positive Postings Why we walk

by Dale Pierce ~ Practice Manager/Ryan White Program Director

The annual Charlotte AIDSWALK is coming up on May 5, 2012, at the Gateway Village in Uptown Charlotte. I thought this was a great time to reflect on why we should walk. I’ll definitely expand upon that later, but first a little history of the AIDSWALK itself. Visit for all the information on our community’s walk. The 16th annual AIDS WALK Charlotte is the largest HIV awareness and fundraising event in the Carolinas and is a visual representation of our community’s commitment and compassion for those impacted by HIV and AIDS. Over 2,000 caring individuals will walk two miles through Uptown Charlotte’s historic Fourth Ward district in memory of those who have finished their journey, as advocates for those infected, and as a beacon of light for the future when our steps will have helped stop its spread. The AIDSWALK is a benefit for the Regional AIDS Interfaith Network (RAIN). RAIN was founded

in 1992 by Rev. Deborah C. Warren and a group of committed volunteers who sought a way to engage the faith community in addressing the challenges presented by HIV and AIDS. In the early 1990s there was stigma, fear, and misinformation about the disease. The goal of RAIN, at that time, was to begin changing attitudes, while at the same time helping people dying with AIDS to not die alone. Our focus has shifted from caring for people dying with AIDS to providing compassionate care for individuals living with HIV. RAIN continues to educate and advocate for all people with HIV and AIDS and to work for a greater understanding and how it affects everyone regardless of race, gender, or sexual orientation. RAIN is one of the largest HIV nonprofits in Charlotte and is widely recognized for its unique model and expertise in working with persons living with HIV and with volunteers from the community. RAIN has received a number of national and state awards for accomplishments and innovative practices. RAIN integrates the wisdom and voices of those infected with HIV in the planning and delivery of services. As a result of our work, we inspire and empower more people to live, open more minds, and help break stigma of HIV regionally and nationally. To learn more and become more involved, please visit The world’s first AIDS Walk was developed by Craig R. Miller in 1984, during the height of the

AIDS epidemic. Seeing the need for immediate action in response to this public-health emergency, Miller sought to fill the void left by the government’s negligible response to the crisis. Drawing on his experience as a political and community organizer, Miller’s approach combined grassroots activism with fundraising and other campaign strategies to raise both awareness and urgently needed funds for the fight against AIDS. Miller brought his idea to the fledgling AIDS service organization, AIDS Project Los Angeles (APLA), who hired the young activist to produce this new event. Miller and APLA expected to draw a crowd of 1,000 supporters and raise $100,000 for this very first AIDS Walk. On July 28, 1985, in Los Angeles, 4,500 courageous and visionary people assembled at Paramount Studios and raised an astonishing $673,000. Since then hundreds of other AIDSWALKs, including the Charlotte AIDSWALK, have risen up to answer the call of their communities. Rosedale ID has been a partner with RAIN and the Walk since Rosedale’s inception in 2006. Personally, up until this year I had served on the AIDSWALK committee myself for many years, including two years as the co-chair. This walk holds a near and dear place in my heart, because of my status and the dedication I have for the work by organizations like Rosedale and RAIN. I walk because I want to help those that cannot help them-

selves. I walk because I am fortunate enough that I can walk to help others still. I walk because silence is deadly. I walk for all my friends who I have lost in the war on AIDS. I walk so I don’t lose anymore people to this dreadful disease. I walk in memory of all those that walked before me and blazed trails for all of us in the fight. I walk to remember, and I walk to erase stigma. I walk because AIDS is not over! Since the first AIDS case was diagnosed in 1981, over 600,000 Americans have died of AIDS, more than all the U.S. combat deaths since the beginning of World War I. And, while recent advances in medicine and new treatments have made it possible for many people living with HIV/AIDS to live longer lives, public health officials have confirmed that a general perception that HIV is no longer a serious threat has led to increased infection rates in the U.S. In fact, according to the 2006 UN AIDS Report, the number of people infected with HIV in the U.S. has reached its highest level ever, estimated at 1.2 million. Join us at the Rosedale ID information booth at AIDSWALK 2012 so we can meet you and tell you all about our new services and exciting changes for the coming year, or just stop by and say Hello. See you at the Walk! Don’t forget to visit our website at and friend us on Facebook for community and clinical updates. — Sponsored Content —

April 28-May 11 . 2012




tell trinity by trinity qnotes contributor

My ex is back and he wants to… date!

Dear Trinity, My ex just moved back to my area after being away for seven months! Not a call or a letter, nothing! Now, he wants to get back together. Don’t you think seven months is too long to keep someone hanging and expect them to get back together? Ex-Troubles, Provincetown, MA Dear Ex- Troubles, Why that dirty, no good! If it were me, I’d never take him back, never let him love me, never. What? Seriously, pumpkin, don’t be righteous and full of pride. That’s boring and too right-wing for anyone in Provincetown. People make mistakes and need time to figure it out. If he apologizes and explains his mistakes, then don’t waste anymore time. Today is the first day of the rest of your life, so forgive him, rewrite some new rules for both of you and try again! That’s life! Hello Trinity, My girlfriend dumped me with absolutely no explanation, leaving me an angry mess. I demanded an explanation, but she avoids me. Help! Wanting Completion, New Haven, CT Hello Wanting Completion, No answers, no closure, nothing! It’s like a sudden death. Maybe you’re



April 28-May 11 . 2012

too clean, too friendly or too wild. But, whatever the reasons, sometimes people decide they don’t like someone and never get up the nerve to tell them. Welcome to the dating world. It sounds cliché, but you must move on! You must get a healthy attitude. Think positive, act positive and feel positive with everything about you. Sweetie, listen to Kelly Clarkson’s song, “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.” This too shall pass like a bad meal. I promise. (Try to have a healthy attitude. I’ll explain how when you take a look at my cartoon.) Dearest Trinity, I’ve been a happy gay man since I can remember. However, a month ago at my 40th birthday, I surprisingly ended up in bed with a woman. Since that night we’ve started spending time together. I’m not as confused about it as I am disappointed in my friends who now treat me like a Republican. Where do I go from here? Friendless, Minneapolis, MN Dearest Friendless, As far as your friends are concerned, you did turn Republican. The gay rights movement depends on everyone at the front lines and I think they feel like they lost a soldier. But, we both know better. Whether it be a straight man discovering he’s gay or vice versa, you allowed yourself to be more than you thought you where and that’s what makes a soldier a commander-inchief. Now, honey, not only do you get to be bisexual, but you get

to see how loyal your friends are. That’s life and you’re really livin’ it. Hi there again Miss Trinity, Not long ago you graciously answered my letter on “How to find a date.” But, you never mentioned what to do once I’m on that date. I’d love some tips! Barfly No More, San Diego, CA Hi there again Barfly No More, This time cut it out and glue it to the back of your cell phone case. Trinity’s Profound Tips For Dating   1. A little mystery evokes intrigue and flair, but too many secrets evokes trouble in the air.   2. Dating someone exactly like us, promises a date with the most boring one on the bus.   3. Low self-esteem needs therapy, not compulsive dating.   4. People who have good relationships with their parents often have good relationships.   5. When our problems become our conversation, dinner alone becomes our occupation.   6. Too much work and not enough play makes Jacqueline a dull girl!   7. Who we choose to date is directly related to how we see ourselves!   8. When one substance abuser dates another, it’s time for a documentary not a relationship.   9. Communicating communication communicatively is our greatest ally. 10. Looking to find that perfect mate, who’s at their ultimate potential? Then become a necrophiliac! : : — With a Masters of Divinity, Reverend Trinity was host of “Spiritually Speaking,” a weekly radio drama, and now performs globally. info: . Sponsored by: Provincetown Business Guild 800-637-8696 .


out in the stars by charlene lichtenstein qnotes contributor

April 28 - May 11

Let’s go merrily into May as a parade of planets bump, jostle and set their energies off into the stratosphere. Mars opposes Neptune. The Sun conjuncts Jupiter. Mars trines Pluto. Venus retrogrades and trines retrograde Saturn. Whew! There is a lot of energy seeking an outlet. What path will you choose? TAURUS (04.21-05.21) Friends encourage you to spend time with them. But, they can lead you on wasteful tangents and squander your resources and energies. Oh, lucky you! You have been very diligent and serious as of late. It is time that you let loose and give life a spin around the park. Don’t sit in your cave tending your personal fire. Venture out and see who is cooking what next door. GEMINI (05.22-06.21) If you find yourself daydreaming at work this May, chalk it up to too much going on at home and give your brain room to roam. Pink Twins have the urge to purge, paint and push some furniture around. See how inspired your home environment can become with a few creative touches. When all else fails to impress, enlist some savvy pals to help you decorate. CANCER (06.22-07.23) You are bursting with a loud opinion followed by a caustic commentary. And, what good timing, gay Crab! Now your words can be used like weapons to cut to the chase and get things moving in the correct direction. For the greatest impact, be sure that you have carefully crafted your treatise and know what you want to say before you say it. Then say it. LEO (07.24-08.23) Money and its impact on your life will be a consistent theme for the next few weeks. Are you preparing for your comfortable future? Proud Lions who have done their fiscal homework can now feel the benefits while those who need more time to work on their foundation will get the right building materials. It’s only a matter of discipline. Bondage is optional. VIRGO (08.24-09.23) May is a time of romance, connection and possible commitment, but only if you really want it. Queer Virgins currently ensconced in a relationship need to focus on balance — your vs. their needs. If you are searching for your dreamboat, it may be time to pull up anchor and set sail for different waters. You never know where you will wash ashore. Ahoy, sailor! LIBRA (09.24-10.23) There is so much going on in the background that it may spill out into the foreground. Gay Libras are not only more cognizant of scuttlebutt and gossip, they are also part of the behind-the-scenes action. While you are unearthing secrets, clean out your own cache and rid yourself of excess psychological spam. Those who live in glass houses must dress in the basement. SCORPIO (10.24-11.22) You are poised to become a social force and need to rally the troops. How creative can you get? Let’s just see. Romance, art, drama and passion are all possible playmates. Proud Scorpios can enlist a group of like-minded compadres and mix it all up to a frothy lather. Just don’t slip and fall on the messy aftermath. Or, maybe that is part of the dramatic plan? SAGITTARIUS (11.23-12.22) This is not the time to suffer from low ambition and dreams of retirement, gay Archer. Get your head and heart focused on your career. May delivers a plethora of professional projects to your office door. Projects mean money and who knows what the next few months will bring? You need to rake it in while there is something valuable to rake in. CAPRICORN (12.23-01.20) Pink Caps can plan some wonderful escapes this May and expand their horizons. Book yourself a vacation or try your hand at something new and exotic closer to home. The most important thing is to open yourself up to new stimuli and experiences that can

possibly change or modify your long held and set opinions. Will it be evolution or revolution? AQUARIUS (01.21-02.19) Romance and its glorious possibilities move to the frontburner for you this May. Even aloof Aqueerians can’t help but feel loosie, goosie and a bit smoochie. Don’t get hung up in appearances. Let yourself go and take a chance on a certain alluring someone. Of course, love may cost more than you think. Champagne baths don’t flow from the spouts, you know. PISCES (02.20-03.20) Concentrate on improving current relationships — for both business and pleasure. And, find some new important folks to meet and greet. Guppies find that connections and good communication help them overcome any obstacle. You make a fabulous first impression. Don’t let all that personal magnetism dissipate. By June you will want to relax and recharge. Zap! ARIES (03.21-04.20) Much of May could be spent trying to catch up on the nitty-gritty leftovers of the day. While this seems like a waste of time, you will soon notice that hum- drum tasks actually enable you to space out and free think to expand your creative vision. Inspiration strikes in unusual and welcome ways. Sometimes we attain Nirvana while scrubbing the tub, proud Ram. : : © 2012 Madam Lichtenstein, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Entertainment. info: Visit for e-greetings, horoscopes and Pride jewelry. My book “HerScopes: A Guide To Astrology For Lesbians” from Simon & Schuster is available at bookstores and major booksites.

April 28-May 11 . 2012



Trina set to perform at Pride Charlotte continued from page 8

cess for the festival and its organizers.” Trina has truly held her own in the Hip Hop genre for over a decade and continues to collaborate with artists and create a sound that is new while remaining true to herself throughout her career. The Hip Hop princess has worked with other Hip Hop stars including Missy Elliott, Keyshia Cole, Dre, Lil’ Wayne, Kelly Roland, Snoop Dog and more. “My whole career has been a journey filled with obstacles, growth, passion, pain and success,” Trina expresses. “I am happy to continue to evolve and allow the world to see this same evolution as a business woman, an entrepreneur and just as a woman who can make accomplishments or mistakes just as any other human being.” Her fifth album, “Amazin,” launched Summer 2010 and reached #2 on Billboard’s Rap Album chart and #1 on their Independent Album chart. The album featured collaborations with such artists as Diddy, Keri Hilson, Monica, Nicki Minaj, Lyfe Jennings and Lady Saw.



Trina is currently working on her sixth album, which would make her the first female emcee to release six albums. In March of 2011 Trina released a three-single mixtape called “Diamonds are Forever” which included collaborations with popular artists T-Pain, Rick Ross and Mýa. Throughout her career, Trina has been featured in numerous magazines including Rolling Out, Sister 2 Sister, XXL, King, Ozone, Source, Kontrol, Urban Ink, Black Men and more. Trina still remains in the mainstream today making television appearances on VH1, MTV, BET, “The Monique Show,” CNN’s “Nitecap” and other media. Trina is scheduled to take the headlining stage on Saturday, Aug. 25 where she will play to what is expected to be the largest Pride Charlotte crowd in the festival’s history. No more information has been released at press time detailing events that will take place during Pride Charlotte 2012. Local artists and entertainers still have

April 28-May 11 . 2012

time to apply to be a part of this year’s festival. The Pride Charlotte committee is encouraging any interested artists to submit their information through the Pride Charlotte website at The Pride Charlotte committee is also still accepting applications for organizations or individuals interested in being a vendor during the festival. With expanded street presence and an additional day there is space for more vendors than ever before. According to the Pride Charlotte website vendor spaces are

currently priced at $200 non-profit and $400 for profit until May 1. Interested businesses wanting to secure vendor space at Pride Charlotte should visit In order to make a festival of this size a success, Pride Charlotte needs the support of individuals to volunteer prior to and during the festival. Interested in finding out ways you can volunteer to support Pride Charlotte? Then visit Pride Charlotte is a project of The LGBT Community Center of Charlotte. : :

It’s family festival time

May 5 • Raleigh OutRaleigh: All Families Matter OutRaleigh, a free family-friendly event provided by the LGBT Center of Raleigh, celebrates the diversity of families in the Triangle region of North Carolina. With the theme of “All Families Matter,” the annual street festival will be held on May 5 in downtown Raleigh. The event includes guest speakers, live entertainment, a KidsZone and an expo area. The day-long festival will feature a main stage performance area for regional and local musical groups, as well as local dignitaries and speakers. This family-friendly event provides a safe and welcoming environment for all people to have fun and learn about issues affecting neighbors, friends, coworkers and family members who are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender. All of Fayetteville St. from the State Capitol to City Plaza will be closed for the event, allowing businesses and non-profit organizations to set up vendor spaces to interact with the visiting public. Businesses and restaurants in the surrounding downtown area will be encouraged to welcome and support the festival attendees.   This is a free event and will be held rain or shine! 10 a.m.-7 p.m. For a complete list of events, entertainment and more, visit April 28 • Charlotte Backyard BBQ and Amendment One march Janice Covington’s annual backyard BBQ is moving to Petra’s Piano Bar this year to host a larger crowd than ever and to organize a march against Amendment One in conjunction with The Coalition to Protect All NC Families. The cookout serves as an annual social meet and greet for the LGBT community. After the cookout join the Protect All NC Families organization, along with friends and supporters, for a peaceful march from Petra’s to Central and the Plaza in Plaza-Midwood to bring attention to defeating Amendment One. There is no cover for the event and food will be provided for free. 3-6:30 p.m. Petra’s Piano Bar, 1919 Commonwealth Ave. April 28 • Charlotte Whitney Mixter from Showtime’s ‘Real L Word’ Come party at the next FLO (For Lesbians Only) event with Whitney Mixter from Showtime’s “The Real L Word.” The ACLU will be available to answer questions about why you should vote against Amendment One on May 8. Did you know that this vote affects us all: straight, gay, our children and even senior citizens! They will provide registered voters with information on where their closest polls are. Early voting starts April 19-May 5. $20 and $15 Tickets are available online and at White Rabbit. The fun starts at 9:30 p.m. Petra’s Piano Bar, 1919 Commonwealth Ave. April 28 • Charlotte Masquerade: An Alternative Prom Time Out Youth presents Masquerade: An

Alternative Prom for LGBTQ and allied youth age 13-23. TOY approved volunteers are also able to attend. Tickets: advance/$8 for single, $12 for couples; door tickets/$10 for single, $15 for couples. 7:30 p.m. Grand Central, 1000 Central Ave. Call Time Out Youth at 704-3448335 to purchase tickets. May 1 • Raleigh LGBT Job Fair Be part of this special LGBT Center of Raleigh event. Job seekers and employers can have an opportunity to meet face-to-face. Promote inclusive policies, diversity and find LGBT talent. Workshops. Pre-registration encouraged. Sponsorship, booth purchase and ad purchase packet forms due by April 17. Venture Hall / IMAX Building at Marbles Museum, 201 E. Hargaett St.  financial/221-2012-lgbt-job-fair.html. May 3 - 19 • Charlotte QCTC Presents: Stephen Sondheim’s ‘Passion’ “Loving you is not a choice…It’s who I am…” Queen City Theatre Company is back with another grand Broadway classic in the intimate setting of the Duke Energy Theatre: Stephen Sondheim’s “Passion.” Winner of the Tony Award for Best Musical, Best Book of a Musical and Best Original Score. 8 p.m. and 3 p.m. on Sundays. Duke Energy Theatre, 345 N College St. May 4 • Chapel Hill Standing on the Side of Love concert series Emma’s Revolution uses the power of music to promote peace and justice, LGBT, human rights, labor, women and environmental

we want your who/what/where

issues. They are doing a series of concerts across the state in honor and celebration of efforts against Amendment One. The concert will feature the musical performing group, Emma’s Revolution, an exciting duo of Pat Humphries and Sandy O, famous as both performers and song writers par excellence. The concert will culminate months of community efforts against the Amendment One. It will also kick off a weekend of final Get-Out-TheVote activities before election day on May 8. Tickets can be purchased online for $15 or $18 at the door. 7:30 p.m. The Community Church of Chapel Hill, 106 Purefoy Road. May 5 • Chapel Hill Final Push: Get Out The Vote The Coalition to Protect All NC Families is hosting three back-to-back shifts of Get Out The Vote phone banking. They are hoping to have 15-30 people per time slot. Shifts start at 9 a.m, 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. For individuals who have never assisted with phone banking there will be trainings at 9 a.m., 10:45 a.m. and 12:45 p.m. Breakfast and lunch is available and there will be hourly prize drawings for participants. Bring a cellphone or a laptop (with power cable) if possible. 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Community Church of Chapel Hill, Unitarian Universalist / Jones Building, 106 Purefoy Rd.


events qnotes

arts. entertainment. news. views. the Get Out The Vote campaign two days prior to May 8. Concert to include the band Mount Moriah and a rally in the evening with DJ Yammy and DJ Fifi Hifi indoors afterwards to rock out the night. Rally starts at 6 p.m. Free. The Pinkhook parking lot, 117 West Main St. May 6 • Saxapahaw Concert to Defeat Amendment One Performing will be Bob Mould, comedian David Cross (“Arrested Development,” etc.), Stu McLamb from The Love Language, Comedian Tig Notaro (Sarah Silverman’s TV show), local heroes Superchunk and actress/poet Amber Tamblyn. Tickets are $80 for the seated show and include a silkscreen copy of the event’s poster. 8 p.m. Haw River Ballroom, 1711 Saxapahaw Bethlehem Church Rd. May 12 • Winston-Salem OUT at the Movies Screening UNCSA’s ACE Theatre Complex. 1533 S. Main St. 7 p.m. $7 adults/ $6 seniors/students. For movie information, call or visit their website. 336-918-0902.

May 6 • Durham Rock Against Amendment One Join supporters against Amendment One in the parking lot of The Pinhook and be a part of

May 13 • Winston-Salem 2nd/4th Sunday Winston-Salem Tea Dance A portion of the proceeds will benefit AIDS Care Service. No cover. Music by DJ Clash. Encore, 411 W. 4th St. 5 - 9 p.m. 336-918-0902.

Submitting an event for inclusion in our calendar has never been easier: visit

April 28-May 11 . 2012





April 28-May 11 . 2012

QNotes April 28-May 11, 2012  

In this issue, QNotes examines the changing face of the American family. Additionally, we have news on election endorsements, the upcoming A...

QNotes April 28-May 11, 2012  

In this issue, QNotes examines the changing face of the American family. Additionally, we have news on election endorsements, the upcoming A...