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June 25-July 8 . 2011

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qnotes

June 25-July 8 . 2011


inside June 25-July 8, 2011 Vol 26 No 04

10

news & features   6 10 10 12 12

News Notes: Regional Briefs N.C. youth chosen as scholars Webby Awards honor Dan Savage NC Pride loses tax-exempt status S.C. county passes ordinance

opinions & views   4   4   5 19

Editor’s Note General Gayety T-Notes QPoll

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a&e/life&style

  8 Developer wants LGBT-friendly senior housing   8 Raleigh center supports aging LGBTs   9 Wills and other legal docs 13 Tell Trinity 14 Out in the Stars 17 Audiophile 19 Q events calendar

contributors this issue

Robbi Cohn, Matt Comer, Charlene Lichtenstein, Shawn Long, Lainey Millen, Leslie Robinson, David Stout, Trinity,

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June 25-July 8 . 2011

qnotes




VIEWS

editor’s note by matt comer matt@goqnotes.com

Sanctity of marriage or GOTV ploy?

Part of me would love to think that this month’s earlier mishap with an open mic in a closed-door North Carolina House Republican caucus meeting was intentional — a smart political ploy to bring attention to some GOP initiative or send a sneaky message to the governor and other Democratic foes. (See last issue’s “Open mic broadcasts GOP closeddoor talks on anti-gay amendment,” goqnotes. com/11285). Unfortunately, I just don’t think this   state’s Republican legislative leadership is that intelligent. Why, you might be asking, would Matt say such mean things about people with whom he should simply and civilly disagree? Republicans in the state and I have more than just a simple divergence in political philosophy. After all, it is they who are proposing an anti-LGBT constitutional amendment that would enshrine my own second-class citizenship into our state’s most

sacred public document. Because of that mistakenly broadcast strategy session, the public at least knows now the true reasons behind their push to harm Tar Heel LGBTs. Are you surprised to learn that it has absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with the sanctity of marriage? Since their introduction as fodder for political wedging, marriage amendments have had one, clear effect; their placement on ballots drives out conservative voters by the masses and results in Republican electoral gains. These political maneuvers have nothing to do with so-called family values — simply put, marriage amendments are nothing more than feardriven get-out-the-vote efforts. Republicans know exactly what they want and state Rep. Mark Hilton couldn’t have made it any clearer. “It’s important to the conservative groups that we get this passed this year because they need that to be able to get their ground game working to get the maximum effect to get out

general gayety by leslie robinson :: qnotes contributor

Flying the colors

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At the start of June, citizens of Richmond, Va., noticed an addition to the flagpole outside the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond. Underneath the American flag waved a rainbow flag. The two banners, Old Glory and Newish Pride-y, flapped in the breeze. Then gums flapped, too, and within seconds Richmond had its very own flag flap. A flap over the fag flag. Gag. I’ll stop now. The rumpus began when PRISM, a year-old employee LGBT group at the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, asked for the flying of the rainbow flag to mark Pride month. The bank, a private financial institution located downtown, agreed to fly the flag for all of June, reported Richmond.com. Richmond’s Pride actually takes place in September, but that’s not the point, so forget I mentioned it. “We strongly support a diverse and inclusive culture at the Richmond Fed and



have learned that it is important to value and embrace differences, both seen and unseen,” said Sally Green, the bank’s chief operating officer. “We are flying the ‘Pride’ flag as an example of our commitment to the values of acceptance and inclusion,” she added. Aren’t those great sentiments? I’d like to work for Ms. Green, if I didn’t have such a blanket distrust of any entity that might’ve contributed to the world’s economic collapse. Forget I mentioned that, too. So, there was the rainbow flag, dressing up the downtown concrete monolith in Virginia’s capital city. And, there were members of The Family Foundation, enjoying their new headquarters until they looked out their west-facing windows and spotted the flag. It’s a real shame the rainbow flag won’t permanently mar the view of these guardians of family values. They blogged their displeasure, noting

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June 25-July 8 . 2011

the vote,” he said during the caucus. Once you start to see marriage amendments for what they truly are, it’s easier to pin down exactly the type of underhanded agenda that currently drives the Republican Party. Their efforts serve to further just one goal: the destruction of our great republic’s democratic principles, ideals and practices. After their historic 2010 sweep into legislative power in states across the nation, Republicans have been pursuing any and all measures to give them a bump at the polls. North Carolina’s proposed marriage amendment is just one example of many of their efforts to strip power away from the many and concentrate it in the hands of the privileged and wealthy few. The right so often accuses the left of starting “class warfare.” If truth be known, the Republicans started it a long time ago. Their attacks on the poor, the elderly, all people of color, immigrants, LGBTs, women, Muslims, students and others are all forms of class warfare. Just because it’s done in a suit and with a smile on their face doesn’t make the very real and very drastic effects of such actions any less damaging to those on the receiving end. At the very least, Republicans could be honest about their intentions. That’d be

halfway respectable. Instead, they wrap their hateful political goals in the flag and propagate them in the name of God. North Carolinians deserve so much better than what the current crop of GOP leaders and state lawmakers are offering.

bank executive Sally Green’s statement about inclusivity and complaining, “Apparently that inclusivity doesn’t apply to those who do not condone homosexual behavior.” Honestly. How can you condone or not condone a naturally existing group of people? It’s like saying you don’t approve of redheads, or left-handers, or Pygmies. Don’t forget I mentioned that. The Cavalier State’s protectors pledged stiff upper lips: “At The Family Foundation, we will simply choose to use this flag…as motivation for the work that lies ahead.” Namely attacking gay, redheaded, lefthanded Pygmies. Bob Marshall, a Republican member of the Virginia House of Delegates, pitched in with a hysterical response to the Pride flag. He dispatched a letter to Jeffrey M. Lacker, the president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond. Marshall misspelled Lacker’s name, but hey, he was so upset he could hardly think straight. The lawmaker questioned what flying the flag has to do with the Fed’s mission. “Moreover, the homosexual behavior ‘celebrated’ by your Richmond’s Federal Reserve Bank spokeswoman undermines the

American economy, is a class six felony in Virginia (18.2-361, VA Code), shortens lives, adds significantly to illness, increases health costs, promotes venereal diseases and worsens the population imbalance relating to the number of workers supporting the beneficiaries of America’s Social Security and Medicare Programs.” I’m pretty sure we were on the grassy knoll, too. Marshall continued, “The Richmond Fed’s endorsement of costly, anti-social, immoral behavior is rejected by 6,000 years of Western Religious and moral teaching. You want the American people to trust your judgment in economic matters when your spokesperson celebrates an attack on public morals?” That Virginians trust Marshall’s judgment enough to elect him is what is truly scary. The legislator ended his fanciful rant with, “Mr. Lacke (sic), take down that flag!” As of this writing, the bank hasn’t. I’m fascinated to see if it withstands the attacks and if it hoists the flag next year. I know one thing: These colors don’t   run. Unless you wash them in the wrong temperature. : :

Baptist meeting bittersweet In mid-June, a coalition of LGBT advocacy organizations and other groups committed to education, faith work and activism launched a campaign to collect petition signatures and request an apology to LGBT people from the Southern Baptist Convention. The coalition, including North Carolina-based Faith in America, successfully gathered 10,000 names, an honorable feat overshadowed only by their ability to sit down and speak with Southern Baptist Convention President Bryant Wright. (See news notes on page 6.) The meeting with Bryant was bittersweet — a victory and a loss rolled into one, single event. One day, however, there will be an apology to LGBTs from Southern Baptists just as the group has apologized for slavery and to other minorities. I only pray such an action comes sooner rather than later. The spiritual, emotional and civic health and well-being of entire generations of LGBT young people depends on it. : :

info:

LesRobinson@aol.com . generalgayety.com


t-notes by robbi cohn :: qnotes contributor

De-evolution

Over the past two years, many state and local jurisdictions have enacted laws making discrimination against trans individuals illegal. That’s the good news. The bad news is that those who would prefer to keep discrimination alive and kicking (not hard to figure out who these people are) have a new tactic; well, not really new, but one they’ve taken to exploiting as fully as possible. It’s the kind of effort one might describe as extreme, yet as many on the religious right have become desperate as they continue to lose the battle over hearts and minds. And we all know desperation foreshadows crazy tactics. The idea they are utilizing is to walk back legislation. If a city or county passes anti-discrimination laws, then the state can countermand those laws by passing a bill which somehow supersedes the lesser jurisdiction’s ruling. Or, state’s courts can find the legislation unconstitutional. As mentioned, this is not really new. The ballot iniative leading up to Romer v. Evans was a sort of precedent which right wing and fundamentalist groups and legislators are currently not hesitating to utilize. Colorado’s Amendment 2 was introduced in reaction to legislation passed by several local jurisdictions barring discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. According to Dr. Jillian Weiss, attorney, legal scholar and professor at Ramapo College, “in 1996, the U.S. Supreme Court heard a case involving a Colorado ballot initiative amending the Colorado Constitution ‘precluding any judicial, legislative, or executive action designed to protect persons from discrimination based on their‘ homosexual, lesbian, or bisexual orientation, conduct, practices or relationships.” The U.S. Supreme court held that this proposed amendment was unconstitutional. Fifteen years hence, we’ve seen several attempts to undo legislation which seem to fall in the same bailiwick as Romer. Earlier this year, the city of Missoula, Mont., home of University of Montana, faced a challenge at the state level regarding anti-discrimination legislation it had enacted adding protections to its already existing laws for sexual orientation and gender identity. The state’s Republican legislature pitched a fierce battle

to overturn the Missoula ordinance, but finally lost. It must be noted here, and in other instances of “walk back” legislation, that the concept of lower jurisdictional autonomy which the Republican Party continually espouses — their “smaller government” meme — makes a complete hypocrisy of this kind of government interference. A similar, yet somehow different, scenario played out in Maine over the past few months. Based on a Maine Human Rights Commission finding, Orono, Maine, public schools had allowed a trans teen to use a gender appropriate bathroom in school. LD 1046 would have mandated that this student would have to use a bathroom which not only did not match her gender presentation, but which ultimately would have been potentially dangerous for her. Her other choice was to use a private bathroom which would serve to ostracize her from the other students. Furthermore, as reported in the Lewiston Sun, LD 1046 “would have prevented transgender individuals from filing complaints against schools and other public institutions for restricting access to bathrooms and locker rooms.” Fortunately, LD 1046 failed, 61-81. This brings us to Tennessee and SB 632/ HB 600. This bill was introduced, and eventually passed, as a response to a Nashville

city ordinance preventing businesses with city contracts from discriminating against its LGBT employees. A few weeks ago, Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam signed the bill into law, thereby undoing Nashville’s protections. But, that wasn’t the entire substance of SB 632/HB 600, which now effectively precludes local Tennessee jurisdictions from passing any anti-discrimination ordinance which is not fully aligned with State of Tennessee law as already written. Advocacy groups are weighing in. Chris Sanders of the Tennessee Equality Project released the following statement: “We are disappointed that the majority in the General Assembly and the Governor have given their assent to SB632/HB600, which overturns a Metro non-discrimination ordinance, prevents any city or county in Tennessee from adopting a similar law, and redefines ‘sex’ in the Tennessee code to the detriment of transgender people. You can’t create jobs by allowing discrimination. And you can’t say you’re for smaller government when you take away the power of citizens to determine how their local tax dollars are used in government contracting. All Tennesseans deserve to be free of job discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, and we will continue to work toward that goal.” Efforts to thwart this de-evolutionary effort include lawsuits aimed at challenging the constitutionality/legality of SB632/HB600. Former director of Lambda Legal, Abby Rubenfeld, has joined with several other attorneys to bring suit against the state’s passage of this heinous legislation. State Sen. Jim Kyle has also proposed a bill that would

see T-Notes on 16

June 25-July 8 . 2011

qnotes




BRIEFS

news notes: from the carolinas, nation and world compiled by Lainey Millen :: lainey@goqnotes.com | David Stout :: david@goqnotes.com | Matt Comer :: matt@goqnotes.com

Anti-gay positions challenged

ASHEVILLE — North Carolina organizations confronted issues of homosexuality, “ex-gay” reparative therapies and religion recently. Exodus International’s “Reality of Grace” conference was June 8-11 near Black Mountain. In Asheville, organizers with the No Exodus Project hosted national and local speakers to counter the “ex-gay” comference and discuss the harm of religion-based discrimination, the “ex-gay” industry and more. Asheville’s “The Reality of Will and Grace: a Refutation of the Exgay Movement,” was held June 8-11 and included panel discussions, special guest speakers and exhibits at a downtown jazz and blues bar and at First Congregational United Church of Christ. Speakers at the events included keynote speaker Dr. Mel White, founder of Soulforce, and Wayne Besen of Truth Wins Out. Soulforce is an LGBT organization seeking nonviolent dialogue with Christian leaders. Besen founded the nonprofit Truth Wins Out (TWO) in 2006, which was instrumental in convincing Apple Computers to drop its “gay cure” iPhone app. Other speakers included Asheville City Councilmember Cecil Bothwell, Rev. Linda Veltheim, Rabbi Philip J. Bentley, Angel Chandler of GetEqual North Carolina, Rev. Joe Hoffman, ex-gay survivor Jessica Carter and Rev. Victor Mansfield. The conference’s opening night gala featured a presentation by Cecil Bothwell on the Religious Right’s campaign against the LGBT community. On June 14 in Phoenix, Ariz., a coalition of LGBT leaders and allies met with Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) President Bryant

Charlotte Lend a hand for equality

CHARLOTTE — The LGBT Community Center has partnered with Equality NC and are currently seeking volunteers to assist in stopping the passage of the anti-LGBT amendment. There are a wide variety of opportunities for everyone. Training and a buddy system is provided at each event. For more information, email Jess at jess@equalitync.org. In other news, The Music Factory has teamed up with Mercedes Benz of South Charlotte Sprinter to offer free shuttle service between Uptown and the center property. This should make it easier for those who wish to visit the center or attend or participate in events there. Schedule is Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, 6:30 p.m.-2:30 a.m., running every 15 minutes from Trade St. and Church St., the Epicenter and Holiday Inn Uptown. Visit mbcharlotte.com/free-shuttle to   learn more. — L.M.

Eastern Gay teens allege suspension over hug

JACKSONVILLE — Two lesbian students at White Oak High School said their principal suspended them for three days after they were found hugging. The students said school administrators do not punish heterosexual students similarly. According to WCTI, Virginie Perrault and Judy Weatherington were hugging in the hallway when a teacher split them up. Assistant Superintendent Barry Collins said the students were punished not for hugging, but because they disrespected the teacher who confronted them. Perrault said there is a double-standard



qnotes

June 25-July 8 . 2011

Wright. They demanded apologies from Wright and the SBC who had refused to budge over the SBC and Wright’s stance on biblical beliefs on “LGBT lifestyle,” reported the Baptist Press. A “teach-in” by the coalition preceded the convention, where it “asked…for an apology for the harm caused by church teaching that justifies and promotes prejudice and condemnation toward LGBT individuals,” Believe Out Loud added. Believe Out Loud added that those in attendance at the meeting were: Faith in America’s Mitchell Gold and Bret Childers; Robin Lunn, Association of Welcoming and Affirming Baptists; Truth Wins Out’s Besen; Ben Alley, an 18-year-old who was kicked out of his home by his Baptist minister father when he came out, but managed, with the help of others, to survive and thrive afterward; Dr. Jack McKinney, a former Southern Baptist minister; Rev. Dr. Anthony Spearman, an AME pastor and chair of the religious affairs committee of the North Carolina chapter of the NAACP; Brad Wishon and Jimmie Gruender, both with the Phoenix chapter of Human Equal Rights Organizer (HERO), which coordinated volunteers and assisted in setting up the meeting with Wright. “I was proud to be a part of this historic meeting,” said Truth Wins Out’s Executive Director Wayne Besen. “This was a rare opportunity to give a first-hand account of the harm the Southern Baptist Convention’s teachings have caused LGBT people, particularity youth. I was also able to look Bryant Wright directly in the eyes and tell him that his ‘ex-gay’ ministries don’t work and are shattering lives.” — compiled from releases

at the school with little, if no, attention being directed to opposite-sex couples. Other students have also criticized Principal Debra M. Bryan, who suspended the girls. They also indicated that she does not punish heterosexual couples for the same actions, but one student came to the principal’s defense. She has come under criticism for not punishing heterosexual couples for similar behavior. The high school’s handbook bans hugging, kissing and other displays of personal affection. — M.C.

Triangle Kimer gets enterprise seal

RALEIGH — Total Engagement Consulting by Kimer, Inc., (TECBK) has received certification as an LGBT-owned and operated business through the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce’s (NGLCC) Supplier Diversity Initiative (SDI). The NGLCC is the nation’s exclusive certifying body for LGBT owned and operated businesses. “I am excited to be certified by the NGLCC and strongly feel that my increased access to NGLCC’s corporate Supplier Diversity Partners will help drive exponential growth in my business,” said Stan C. Kimer, TECBK founder and president. “And I also feel proud to be a diversity pioneer in the south and often to refer to LGBT Diversity as ‘the new diversity frontier for the New South.’” TECBK specializes in diversity management with a specialization in LGBT workplace and marketplace; employee career development using an innovative “career road mapping” methodology; and general organizational effectiveness and project management consulting. For more information, call 919-787-7315 or visit TotalEngagementConsulting.com. — L.M.

Etiquette book released

CHAPEL HILL — Call him Mr. Manners! Or, how about Mr. Petrow? A former same-sex wedding expert for The New York Times, this syndicated etiquette columnist, along with writing essays for The Huffington Post, has just published “Steven Petrow’s Complete Gay & Lesbian Manners For Every Occasion.” With the rise in returning to the finer points of etiquette, this how-to book is chocked full of tidbits on how to survive with style in the LGBT community and elsewhere. He told the South Florida Sun Sentinel that he wrote the book “to help straight people who find themselves in…situations they’ve never had to deal with before and how to maneuver around them with this guide.” This venture took him two-and-a-half years to complete. He spoke to a plethora of experts along the way to make sure that everything was spot on. His intention was to have a useful guide, not one that was chastising. It is peppered with humor and gives the reader every possible scenario for dealing with issues like kids, bullying, dealing with families and more. For more information, visit workman. com/products/9780761156703/. — L.M.

Western Trans summit slated

ASHEVILLE — Mountain Area Health Education Center and TransHealth Coordinators are teaming up to bring the first of its kind Southeastern Transgender Health Summit-2012 to this progressive mountain town during August 2012. This regional conference is being modeled after the Philadelphia Transgender Health Conference, which is in its 10th year.

Summit coordinators hope to offer workshops, seminars and educational opportunities. Open to the public, it will be divided into community and provider presentations. Health, legal issue, beauty and fitness resources will be available, including free health screenings. To apply to be on a discussion panel or for more information, contact Director of TransHealth Coordinators Jennifer Barge via email at transgenderhealthcoor-dinators@yahoo.com or visit transhealthcoordinators.org. — L.M.

Governor visits daycare

TAYLORSVILLE — As she squared off against a Republican-controlled legislature and the budget she said would hurt North Carolina’s public education, Gov. Bev Perdue spoke on June 10 at a special “moving up” ceremony for children enrolled in Lulu’s Childhood Enrichment Center, a first-of-itskind daycare center located at the headquarters of home decorating and furniture company Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams. The ceremony honored 12 cap-and-gownclad preschoolers moving on to kindergarten in the fall. Company co-founder and chairman Mitchell Gold. Bob Williams, company cofounder and president of design, also spoke. Following the ceremony, the company presented its 14th Annual Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams College Scholarship Program awards to 12 college- and university-bound students of company employees. More than $30,000 in scholarships have been distributed this year. Gold and Williams said that the daycare ceremony and awards program were among the proudest days of their lives. “This is a big deal for us,” Williams said. “For the Governor to recognize our company, our commitment to education and pay us a visit on this special day gives us an enormous sense of satisfaction and pride. Mitchell and I created the scholarship program for our employees because we believe that you can make a difference in people’s lives,” continued Williams. “Just as we have witnessed the success of our on-site daycare facility, we have seen this scholarship program continually benefit our employees and their children by inspiring them to consider furthering their education beyond high school.” — M.C.

South Carolina Larger-than-life flag to set record

MYRTLE BEACH — The Myrtle Beach Gay Days 2011 is trying to set a Guiness Book of World Records by building a human rainbow flag on Aug. 13 from 1-2 p.m. in front of the SkyWheel. Participants will don red, orange, yellow, green, blue or purple T-shirts to show pride in the community. Want to be the pole? Then wear a black T-shirt. Registration is open to individuals and groups and is available online at myrtlebeachgaydays.com/human_rainbow_flag. For more information, email info@myrtle  beachgaydays.com. — L.M.


National LGBT refugee resource center

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Administration for Children and Families (ACF) announced June 15 the creation of a first-ever resource center to support the resettlement of LGBT refugees. The Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR), a division of ACF, awarded a $250,000 grant to the Heartland Alliance of Chicago to create this training and technical assistance center. The focus of this initiative will be to provide: Resource and capacity development in key resettlement locations; Sensitivity training to network staff, including overview of key issues regarding newly arriving LGBT refugees; Technical assistance in service delivery; and, Development of best practices and orientation materials for refugee service providers across the country. “As many of these refugees left their homelands specifically because of persecution related to their LGBT status, it is particularly incumbent on us to provide a safe and welcoming environment,” said ACF Acting Assistant Secretary David A. Hansell. — D.S.

Education Dept. affirms GSA rights

WASHINGTON D.C. — On June 14, the U.S. Department of Education released a guidance letter to school districts across the country making clear that gay-straight alliances must be allowed to form on an equal basis with other student groups. The letter from Education Secretary Arne Duncan reminded schools that the Equal Access Act “requires public secondary schools to treat all student-initiated groups equally, regardless of the religious, po-

litical, philosophical, or other subject matters discussed at their meetings. Its protections apply to groups that address issues relating to LGBT students and matters involving sexual orientation and gender identity, just as they apply to religious and other student groups.” — D.S.

Suit filed against anti-gay law

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — A group of local elected officials, individuals and LGBT rights organizations filed a lawsuit June 13 in Davidson County Chancery Court challenging the state’s recent passage of House Bill 600, which prohibits local municipalities and counties, including local school districts, from enacting local laws or school policies that protect gay and transgender people against discrimination. The bill was passed earlier this year, just weeks after Nashville added sexual orientation and gender identity to an existing local anti-discrimination law. The new law also prohibits localities from protecting any other group that is not already protected under state law, which would include veterans and people with disabilities, among others. — D.S.

Boy’s rape conviction overturned

COLUMBUS, Ohio — In a unanimous June 9 ruling, the Ohio Supreme Court overturned the criminal conviction of a 12-year-old boy under the state’s statutory rape law for engaging in intimate conduct with an 11-year-old male friend. The Ohio law categorically prohibits any sexual conduct with a person under the age of 13, without exception for conduct between two persons under that threshold. The prosecutor and trial court applied that

law to charge one of the two boys with statutory rape — a first degree felony. An amicus brief file by the National Center for Lesbian Rights, the National Juvenile Defender Center and the Juvenile Law Center in August of 2010 argued that it was unconstitutional to apply the Ohio law to a child under 13 — a member of the very class the law was designed to protect. The brief argued that giving prosecutors discretion to bring such charges against either participant was unfair and could be used to target youth who are perceived as gay. The brief also argued that the consequences of a conviction as a sex offender for a child are severely disproportionate, including the fact that the conviction can never be expunged from the child’s juvenile record and that the child would have to register as a sex offender if he moved to some other states. The Ohio Supreme Court agreed that the law was unconstitutional as applied to any child under 13. — D.S.

Global Anti-gay murders ongoing

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — In the last year and a half, at least 18 gay or transgender people in Puerto Rico have been killed, three of them in just one week earlier this month. Although advocates believe many of these victims’ lives were taken because of their sexual orientation or gender identity, authorities have not been treating the cases as hate crimes. The most recent victim, Karlota Gomez, was shot to death June 14 by someone driving by her on the street. A suspect has been arrested. In late April, another transgender woman, Francheska Gonzalez, was severely

beaten by a man while leaving a gas station. Late last year, two young transgender women were shot in the head and apparently run over by a car in the southern city of Juana Diaz. Pedro Julio Serrano, founder of the LGBT advocacy group Puerto Rico for Everyone and communications manager for the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, observed, “It seems they have declared open hunting season against lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and transsexual people.” — D.S.

U.N. council passes historic resolution

GENEVA, Switzerland — In a groundbreaking achievement for upholding the principles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), on June 17 the United Nations Human Rights Council passed a resolution on human rights violations based on sexual orientation and gender identity. The resolution, presented by South Africa along with Brazil and 39 additional co-sponsors from all regions of the world, was passed by a vote of 23 in favor, 19 against, and 3 abstentions. The resolution is the first U.N. resolution ever to bring specific focus to human rights violations based on sexual orientation and gender identity, and follows a joint statement on these issues delivered at the March session of the council. The resolution requests the High Commissioner for Human Rights to prepare a study on violence and discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity, and calls for a panel discussion to be held at the Human Rights Council to discuss the findings of the study in a constructive and transparent manner, and to consider appropriate follow-up. — D.S.

June 25-July 8 . 2011

qnotes




Architect says aging LGBT population needs viable, friendly alternatives by Matt Comer :: matt@goqnotes.com

Patricia Harris has lived in Durham for 20 years. First a social worker and educational planner, Harris returned to school years ago to receive training as an architect. In all her years in the Bull City, she’s already left a

positive legacy, serving on the committee to draft the city’s 2020 master plan and on the zoning board. She’s hoping she can make another mark just for the LGBT community. As the community ages right along with the rest of the country, Harris sees a unique need for sustainable and affordable retirement living and housing options tailored to LGBT clients. “We’re way behind the curve in terms of providing housing in the LGBT community and other affinity groups and communities,” Harris tells qnotes. “That need is only going to keep growing and growing. Ten thousand Americans are turning 65 each day.” America’s aging trend will continue to climb and, according to the Social Security Administration, continue each day for the next 19 years. It’s a chilling proposition, as seniors retire and seek benefits from the country’s various entitlement programs — a proposition that will transform our country and our culture. “I think at some point there’s going to be a mass consciousness shift,” Harris says. “People Architect Patricia Harris wants to bring a new housing alterare going to say, ‘Wait, I can native for LGBT seniors

afford my mortgage, but I can’t afford my utilities.’” Harris says financial stressers won’t be the only considerations running through seniors minds. Many fear isolation and depression and seek out living arrangements where they can be among other like-minded people. Additionally, many LGBT seniors report high levels of discrimination and harassment from caregivers and institutions. Harris’ new development firm, Golden Dawn Development, is just now beginning to ramp up design and fundraising efforts to build a mixed-age retirement community in Durham. “We’re in the beginning of that process,” she says. “We have several different ideas on the boards right now and we’re looking at prototypes.” She says she’s heard several ideas from community members. One she likes is the idea of group housing. “You might have three couples who say they all want to live together, so we should take a look at that and see how we might build that into a larger home with shared living space,” she says. Specialized retirement communities tailored to LGBT and LGBT-friendly people is an idea that’s been floating around for at least a decade. There are dozens of communities scattered across the globe that reach out to LGBT clients, including Carefree Cove in Western North Carolina.

GAY & GRAY

Durham developer seeks LGBT-friendly retirement living

Harris’ project, however, diverges from the way many of those communities operate. She says she wants her first development in Durham — she wants to expand to Charlotte or the Triad and then nationally — to welcome LGBT, LGBT-friendly, artistic and other niche customers. She also says a certain portion of the residences will be set aside for younger customers under the age of 35. Harris says such an intergenerational mix would foster a better sense of community and enhance opportunities for older residents. Still, Harris admits she has an uphill battle facing her. “We’ll need to focus on how to present attractive alternatives to the idea of ‘Oh, I’m just going to stay in my house.’” she says. “I’ve had many people who’ve said that and I then ask them how their furnace is, how old their roof is. You’re 60 now, but you have a 10-yearold furnace when you are 80; can you afford a $6,000 out-of-pocket hit then?” In July, Harris will stage a series of community workshops around the Triangle area in order to gauge interest and solicit ideas and suggestions. For more information about Harris’ project or upcoming workshops, visit goldendawn  development.com, email peharris@earthlink. net or call 919-399-1627. : :

This is who we are... LGBT Center of Raleigh’s Gay & Gray Initiative seeks to support, encourage and offer safe spaces to LGBT seniors by Matt Comer :: matt@goqnotes.com

Over the past year, the nation has been gripped by the high numbers of gay teen suicides and heart-wrenching stories of anti-gay bullying in schools. The “bullycide” epidemic, as some began to call it, prompted national outrage and campaigns like the It Gets Better Project. But homophobia, harassment and isolation aren’t reserved to the realm of youth. Older LGBTs, too, experience much of the same prejudice. Les Geller, a member of the LGBT Center of Raleigh’s board of directors and co-chair of its Gay & Gray Initiative, says older LGBTs from the baby boom-era, like the rest of the country, are standing at a crossroads. As the nation ages, so do its LGBT seniors and many are facing seemingly insurmountable obstacles in healthcare and housing. “A lot of the older generation is not out and are afraid to come out over fears of having problems in healthcare facilities; they’re afraid they’ll be mistreated or proselytized or shunned,” Geller, 65, tells qnotes. “These are people who grew up when being gay was illegal and many have never gotten over the sense of being outside the mainstream.” Lorraine Johnson, 49, is also a center board member and Gay & Gray co-chair. She says facts clearly show that the LGBT mature adult population is facing challenges. “It’s the population that is 70-years old and up primarily who are hitting the health-



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care system in terms of homecare and nursing care,” she says. “The senior abuse statistics are terrible. If you add onto that what could be a hostile attitude from a caregiver toward you, it compounds it.” Geller and Johnson’s involvement in the LGBT Center’s Gay & Gray Initiative is something they say was at the top of their agenda even as organizing for the center itself was still taking place. “I knew it was going to be my focus from day one,” Geller says. “It was just a matter of the timing being right for it to get started last year.” The initiative seeks to reach out to the older LGBT community in and around Raleigh. Johnson says part of their mission is social — getting those who have aged past the “going out” stage involved in community events and ensuring they, too, have safe places to go for friends, fun and camaraderie. Yet, serious issues of access and healthcare take priority. Johnson says she’s most concerned with elders’ ability to access the services they need. Older LGBTs are as much as five times less likely to access needed healthcare and social services because of that fear, according to Services & Advocacy for GLBT Elders (SAGE), which provides services, advocacy and programming for LGBT elders. “They aren’t going back into the closet because they are imagining things; there are

real instances of abuse and discrimination,” Johnson says. “You’re dependent upon your caregivers for your life. You’re dependent upon them for your transportation to get back and forth from a doctor. The very people you depend on might be the same people you’re afraid of.” Those problems are magnified in the transgender community, Johnson says: “Think about the hostility toward the transgender community in general and the lack of understanding frankly even from the LGBs and now imagine you’ve got a straight caregiver or doctor doing an exam and being asked to prescribe hormones. It’s a mess.” The Gay & Gray Initiative has been a success so far, Geller says. Several of the group’s socials have attracted dozens. He’s also pleased with the level of interest and involvement from younger LGBTs. “We’ve seen quite a bit of support from the younger generation, which has been quite a surprise to me,” Geller says. “Several members of our committee are under the age of 30 and our volunteer coordinator is 26-years old.” Such young adult involvement is essential to building community. Geller believes many LGBT youth don’t know their own commu-

nity’s history. He’s also concerned with the invisibility older LGBT people face. “Older LGBT people tend to be invisible to younger LGBTs,” he says. “We want them to know who we are, where we’ve been, what we’ve done and how much they owe to us.” The initiative’s efforts have already had a positive effect on getting older LGBTs more involved and visible. At the center’s OutRaleigh event on May 14, Johnson says she was encouraged when she witnessed so many people of all ages enjoying the events. “There were men and women, both younger and older there,” she says. “I’d love to see that be the case at other events.” The initiative is still in its infancy. Johnson and Geller have high hopes for its future and the LGBT Center of Raleigh’s efforts to create more inclusive spaces for the LGBT community’s diversity. They rest easy knowing they have the full support of the center’s leadership. Future efforts to continue social programming as well as healthcare and education initiatives are on the docket. Also planned is a potential partnership with SAGE. “We just want to do whatever we can to help,” Johnson says. “This is part of our community. This is who we are.” : : — Learn more about the Gay & Gray Initiative and the LGBT Center of Raleigh at lgbtcenterofraleigh.com.


GAY & GRAY

Where there’s a will... Thoughts on planning for the future by Shawn Long :: Equality North Carolina

Everyone needs to plan for the future, both for the known and expected events, and the unwanted and unplanned ones. LGBT folks have an additional burden, since we lack many of the legal protections other citizens have. Our families of choice often have no legal connection to us and the state’s default for legal connection, our biological families, may not be supportive. By taking just a few simple steps, however, you can protect yourself and your loved ones. Everyone gets sick sometime. In the case of mild illnesses, you can take care of and advocate for yourself with medical professionals. In more severe situations, however, you might not have that luxury. An advance directive, sometimes called an advance healthcare directive or a living will, is a document you complete that provides specific information on medical care for when you are incapacitated. It details basic curative care, like administration of medicines and antibiotics; palliative care, dealing with pain relief; and extraordinary measures, e.g., if you want CPR and resuscitation performed on you, if or you’d like to prolong your life on a respirator. Beyond an advance directive, it’s also important that you designate someone you trust to make medical decisions for you if you’re not able to. A healthcare power of attorney names the person who should act as your proxy if you are incapacitated. In the absence of this, your nearest legal relative in your biological family will be who gets to make healthcare decision for you. The N.C. Department of the Secretary of State provides sample documents for advance directives, healthcare powers of attorney, and even organ donor cards, as well as the option to register your documents online for a small fee. Learn more at secretary. state.nc.us/ahcdr/. In the event of a planned hospitalization, be sure to tell the hospital the names of any people you would like to be able to visit you. Three years ago Equality NC secured hospital visitation rights for non-legal relatives of patients. Now the Patient’s Bill of Rights for all NC Hospitals states: “A patient has the right to designate visitors who shall receive the same visitation privileges as the patientís immediate

family members, regardless of whether the visitors are legally related to the patient.” For couples, a power of attorney form designates someone to be your legal proxy. You can use this document to name specific limited circumstances that another can act for you, or you can give someone else broad abilities to make any and all legal and financial choices for you. For retirement and stock accounts, be sure to designate your loved one as a beneficiary. When you set up accounts, this is one of the basic steps you take, and it’s an easy and simple way to be sure these assets go to the person you choose. Partners can also establish joint bank accounts, which gives either party equal access to assets in that account. Similarly, significant others can get a mortgage as joint tenants with rights of survivorship. We’ve all heard horror stories where one partner unexpectedly dies, and then the other is kicked out of their home because they don’t have legal rights to it or any other artifact of the relationship. Cohabitation/domestic partnership agreements are contracts between people who live together describing their rights and obligations within a living arrangement. They can describe how finances are handled, as well as how property should be divided in the event of a breakup.

see Planning on 16

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NEWS

N.C. youth chosen for 2011 Point Scholar awards Raleigh and Winston-Salem students to receive high-profile LGBT scholarships by Matt Comer :: matt@goqnotes.com

Two North Carolina students have been chosen among 34 young adults across the nation for inclusion in this year’s Point Scholar Class. The youth each receive high-profile scholarships through the Point Foundation, a non-profit group which provides financial support, leadership training, mentoring and hope to LGBT individuals who are marginalized because of their sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression. Winston-Salem’s Sarah Marshall, a graduate of West Forsyth High School, received the Darden Restaurants Point Scholarship. She will attend John Hopkins University pursuing a master of public health. Raleigh’s Kyle Vey, a graduate of the N.C. School of Science and Math, also received a Point Scholarship. He will attend N.C. State University pursuing a bachelor in biomedical engineering. Marshall says the Point Scholarship she received will substantially assist her efforts to build a career in medicine. “The magnanimous support of Point Foundation will exculpate me from an otherwise massive burden of student loans,”

she said in a statement sent to qnotes. “Unfettered from this debt, I will be free to focus on the care of medically underserved persons, placing special emphasis on helping disadvantaged members of the LGBT community. Also, I believe that my Point mentor will help me to function at my best, even when I encounter transphobia at the hospital or clinic. Medical residency will no doubt be challenging, but I need not face the additional stressors of isolation and loneliness.” That sense of loneliness also strikes a chord with Vey. He says the mentorship provided by Point will assist him. “I remember how I felt before I had come out; it was a mixture of a lot of loneliness, hopelessness, and worthlessness,” Vey said.

“I don’t want LGBT youth to feel like that way anymore. Whether it is providing support groups or spreading knowledge to the com-

munity, I believe my main goal would be to prevent as many adolescents from feeling the way I did before came out.” The Point Foundation is celebrating its

10th anniversary this year. In its first year of operation, the group awarded just eight scholarships. Since then, they’ve helped more than 160 individual scholars with over $5.3 million in direct financial support for their college education. “We founded Point in 2001 with the goal of providing both financial support and mentorship to the best and the brightest LGBT scholars,” co-founder Bruce Lindstrom, who began the organization with his longtime partner Carl Strickland, said in a release. “We had no staff when we started, but we had a wonderful group of individuals willing to volunteer their time, as well as entrepreneurial donors who shared a dream of a national scholarship organization. Today, Point consists of a full staff and nearly 300 volunteers, all working passionately to support the LGBT leaders of tomorrow.” In June 2011, a total of 71 Point Scholars will be supported in their respective colleges or universities and 124 Point Alumni will continue to pursue their life goals. : : info: pointfoundation.org

Webby Awards honor Dan Savage

Dan Savage accepts a special recognition for his It Gets Better Project. Photo Credit: 15th Annual Webby Awards

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Highlighting a star-studded evening of Webby friendly five-word speeches, Dan Savage struck back at Tracy Morgan’s recent controversial remarks in his acceptance speech of a Special Recognition Award at the 15th Annual Webbys on June 13 at The Hammerstein Ballroom. Savage, accepting his award for founding the groundbreaking It Gets Better Project, used his short speech to deliver a pointed message to the outspoken comic. “Tracy Morgan can suck my…,” said Savage in his scathing critique of the star of NBC’s “30 Rock.” In another notable five-word speech, Vogue Editor-in-Chief Anna Wintour delivered remarks clearly aimed at her audience: “Sometimes geek can be chic,” the legendary editor said. In accepting its award for Person of the Year, IBM supercomputer Watson pointedly addressed the controversy of a computer walking away with an award clearly aimed at humans. “Person of the year. Ironic.” Other notable honorees were present as well and offered their own funny five-word speeches, including: • James Murphy from LCD Soundsystem for Artist of the Year: “Thanks, this is deeply weird.”

• Groupon CEO Andrew Mason: “It’s short for group coupon.” • Martin Cooper, inventor of the mobile phone, for his Special Recognition Award: “Can you hear me now?” • Wieden + Kennedy for Agency of the Year: “Anonymous, we thank you, anonymously.” • Chris Milk for Online Film and Video Music Award: “Sinners make the best saints.” • Peter Vesterbacka, creator of Angry Birds, for Webby and People’s Voice Awards: “Get those pigs!!!” Hailed as the “Internet’s highest honor” by The New York Times, The Webby Awards is the leading international award honoring excellence on the internet, including websites, interactive advertising and media, online film and video, and mobile and apps. Learn more at webbyawards.com. : :


June 25-July 8 . 2011

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NEWS

NC Pride’s tax-exempt status revoked; M.I.A. director responds Group one of thousands receiving IRS tax-exempt status revocations after failure to file annual returns by Matt Comer :: matt@goqnotes.com

DURHAM — The NC Pride Fest and Parade has had their federal tax-exempt status revoked by the Internal Revenue Service more than a year after it was first revealed the group was out of compliance with IRS rules governing annual non-profit tax filings. Efforts to reach the director of the NC Pride Fest and Parade had proven more than difficult for qnotes and other community members, even as the organization and its signature Pride event faces an uncertain future. The organization, officially the “Pride Committee of North Carolina,” is one of over 275,000 non-profit groups, commonly referred to as 501(c)(3) organizations, receiving an automatic revocation of their tax-exempt status under The Pension Protection Act of 2006. The federal law requires the IRS to automatically revoke the tax-exempt status of any non-profit group that is required to file the appropriate Form 990 but has failed to do so for three consecutive years. Forms 990 are the annual returns non-profit organizations with incomes over $25,000 must submit to the IRS each year; other groups, such as those with less that $25,000 annual revenue, file a variety of alternative Form 990 versions. The automatic revocations were made on June 8. John Short has directed the more than 25year-old event under its current legal entity for the past decade. qnotes reached out to Short, though he declined for over a week to return our requests for comment. He finally emailed the newspaper a statement just hours before press time. Other community members have said they, too, had problems getting in touch with Short. Keith Hayes, who acted as the group’s media spokesperson, told qnotes on June 14 that he had also not been able to speak with Short regarding the IRS’ revocation. That same day, he resigned from his volunteer position with the organization. “I am proud of the important contribution NC Pride makes for our community, not just in the Triangle and but across the state,” Hayes said. “I am especially proud of the number of young and rural LGBT community members whom the event attracts every year. However, I cannot continue as a spokesperson for an organization when I am not kept aware of the public issues it is facing.” Short’s brief, four-sentence statement, emailed to qnotes on June 19, attempted to

lay some uncertainties to rest, though news staff never had the opportunity to pose indepth questions directly to Short. “At the present time, we are still in talks with the IRS about our 501(c)(3) status and the correct completion of all forms required to bring us back to full compliance,” Short said in the email. “However in that process, we have also learned that since we receive no grants or private donations, and that all of our funding is from advertising revenue, we will not be affected in our yearly projects and operations of our websites while this process continues.” Short continued, “It is also important to remember that the Pride Committee of NC, Inc. is a group of part-time non-paid volunteers that assemble once each year in the summer to organize and direct the NC Pride Parade and Festival in September that has become the largest and most successful GLBT [event] in our state, and in its success encouraged at least eight other local Pride events around North Carolina. It is also important to note that all of our NC Pride events are always free to the public.” Why Short never completed the proper IRS forms when he was first made aware of the problem last year is a question, among others, that remains unanswered. Short knew about IRS rules Last May, qnotes reported that NC Pride was currently out of compliance as it had failed to file the appropriate annual returns for several years. The discovery was made during the paper’s first annual Community Assessment Survey and 990 requests to 22 LGBT non-profits and AIDS service organizations across the Carolinas. After receiving the 990 request last March, Short called qnotes and said the organization did not have the necessary documents to disclose. “Your email caused me to realize that I’ve made some oversights and we are technically out of compliance with our IRS filings,” Short said before the May 15, 2010, publication of the survey results and 990 information. He declined to say how many years his organization had missed filing their annual returns. Short said that he had hired a certified public accountant to work on the missing 990s and said he would be willing to send qnotes any of the 990 forms once they were com-

pleted. He also said his accountant would be filing an extension. “I feel confident that everything will be in tip-top shape,” he said. “I feel like I’ve let myself and others down by having to go through this, but we are going to get it solved and get it fixed and take care of.” Two weeks later, Short said the group continued to work on getting its paperwork and IRS filing up-to-date. Hayes also filled out and returned the Community Assessment Survey. The organization self-reported an expected budget and expenses of $65,000.

IRS has also established special procedures for some of the groups affected by the law. Groups like NC Pride, with annual revenues of $50,000 or more, can apply for retroactive reinstatement of their tax-exempt status, though the group must show reasonable cause for their failure to file annual returns. The IRS has also established processes for groups who believe their automatic tax-exempt revocation was made in error. Other LGBT organizations in North Carolina also received automatic revocation of their tax-exempt status. Those groups seem to be defunct and include Charlotte Pride, Inc., which hosted Pride festivities in Charlotte in the early 2000s and is separate from the current LGBT Community Center’s

Group’s future, Short’s leadership in question It is not immediately clear how NC Pride’s tax-exempt status revocation will affect its ability to mount a successful festival and parade this year. Though Short insists the event will go on as planned, the organization’s lack of oversight on such an important financial matter has raised questions about the nature and quality of the group’s leadership. Community members, however, continue to be supportive. Bobby Hilburn, executive director of the LGBT Center of Raleigh, said his organization is aware of NC Pride’s situation and is eager to assist. “The LGBT Center NC Pride Director John Short said last year his group was working to is aware of the situaget IRS filings up-to-date. On June 8, the IRS automatically revoked tion and will be looking the group’s tax-exempt status for failure to file the necessary annual for ways to assist NC returns. Pride in its endeavors Photo Credit: Pam Spaulding/PamsHouseBlend.com this fall,” Hilburn said. “The Center stands behind the event and will Pride Charlotte; Greenville’s Down East Pride; work tirelessly to ensure that it continues as Outright Triangle Area Gay Lesbian & Bisexual it is a huge service and outlet to our LGBTQ Youth; Durham’s Lesbian Thesbians; and Community. It would be irresponsible for us Winston-Salem’s North Carolina Coalition for not to work to ensure its continuance.” Gay and Lesbian Equality. More than 6,300 NC Pride does have the opportuother formerly tax-exempt organizations in nity to reapply for their tax-exempt status. North Carolina received similar automatic Organizations that received an automatic revocations. : : revocation must re-apply for tax-exempt stamore: This is a developing story. For the tus and pay the normally-required fees. The most up-to-date news visit goqnotes.com.

County passes non-discrimination ordinance New law prohibits discrimination in housing, public accommodations by Matt Comer :: matt@goqnotes.com

COLUMBIA — One of South Carolina’s largest counties unanimously passed a new, LGBT-inclusive non-discrimination ordinance on public accommodations and housing at their meeting on June 7. Richland County, home to the state capital city of Columbia, joins with its county seat and the City of Charleston in offering non-discrimination protections to LGBT citizens and residents. Sponsored by freshman Councilman Seth Rose, the ordinance protects individuals from discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, familial status,

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disability or sexual orientation. In the ordinance, “sexual orientation” is defined as “a person’s real or perceived heterosexuality, homosexuality, bisexuality or gender identity or expression.” The ordinance also establishes a fine of $500 for offenders. The June 7 ordinance passage follows another policy enacted by the Richland County Council in May, when the county amended personnel policies to include protections on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. That change also passed with a unanimous vote. South Carolina Equality, a statewide LGBT education, advo-

cacy and lobbying organization, approached Rose to request he sponsor both measures in January. Their executive director, Christine Johnson, has commended the work of the council. Richland County and the Cities of Columbia and Charleston are the only municipal governments in the Carolinas which offer LGBT-inclusive protections in housing and public accommodations. In North Carolina, such decisions are restricted by state statute, though 14 city and county governments have adopted ordinances banning anti-LGBT discrimination in government employment. The Carolinas’ largest city, Charlotte, does not offer similar LGBT-inclusive protections. : :


tell trinity by trinity :: qnotes contributor

The right time to finally sleepover Dear Trinity, After three weeks of dating, my girlfriend wants me to finally “sleepover.” But, I’m afraid it will ruin everything. When is it a good time to finally sleepover? Sleepover Quandary, Grand Rapids, MI

it comes to good/bad, healthy/unhealthy drugs, I have always been taught that “if it grows out of the ground, then you will “catch” a much healthier “buzz” for your body and soul as opposed to something manufactured in some “chemi-kill” factory.” (I’m sizing it up with sounds of preferred music on being high, as you can see in my cartoon.) Dearest Trinity, How do you know when someone you are dating is scamming you? Scam Jam, Des Moines, IA

Hey Trinity, My new boyfriend is giving me troubles for wanting to, “catch a buzz.” Isn’t it natural to want to loosen up after work? And, what are “good or bad drugs” anyway? Loosening Up, Rehoboth Beach, DE

Dearest Scam Jam, You know you are probably being scammed when; a) you really know nothing concrete about someone and what you do know doesn’t all pan out; b) you are “in love” with someone whom your trusted friends call “a thief and a liar;” c) you are suddenly paying someone’s rent, wardrobe, drug habit and/or credit card bills; and, lastly, d) when checks bounce, he or she is always in trouble with inflated excuses or when things start disappearing! Oh, and honey, the remedy for this is: a) call the police; b) change your locks; c) break up with him immediately; and, d) go on a wonderful vacation!

Hey Loosening Up, It’s natural and common to want to escape once in a while as long as you have a handle on it. But, if you don’t or too many people tell you that you don’t, then beware! Now, darling, when

Hello Trinity, I was recently “eighty-sixed” (kicked out) of a bar for drinking too much. Should I sue them? Kicking Out, Topeka, KS

Dear Sleepover Quandary, I myself think it’s important to wait a while. There are many benefits, such as anticipation, respect and the joy of knowing you took your time. Plus, making someone yearn for you is very healthy! Then once you do start sleeping over, there’ll be plenty of evenings to make up for all those lost snores, farts and sleepless nights! Did I just say that? So, pumpkin, please wait until it feels right! You have nothing to lose. And, remember, stay away from beans or onions when that night finally comes!

Hello Kicking Out, Before you go crazy finding out your legal rights as a drinker, maybe you should get serious about finding out your limitations as a drunk. That’s why, sweetie, I’ve compiled: Trinity’s Cocktail Tips For Knowing: “You’re A Drunk When…”   1. You look straight ahead and you see…the sky.   2. You get kicked out of a bar and you don’t know why!   3. You can’t walk, talk or stand straight and you’re sure you’re not high!   4. You think you’re in the bathroom peeing, but you notice cars going by and people yelling at you!   5. You keep laughing at the cop who’s repeating, “Walk a straight line, touch your nose, breathe into the paper bag, lady!”   6. You spit, drool, nod-out and stutter, yet you complain, “I’m fu, fu, fu fine!”   7. You’ve been “shut off” by the bartender, as well as your friends, but you still insist that they are trying to ruin your night!   8. You’re lying on your front lawn watching your partner throw suitcases at you crying, “I can’t take the drinking anymore!”   9. You’re in the back of a taxi listening to the driver yell, “For the last time mister, tell me where you live or I’m dumping you at the police station!” 10. Lastly, you know you’re a drunk when you turn your head side-to-side and all you see is ground, ground and more of the ground! : : — With a Masters of Divinity, Reverend Trinity was host of “Spiritually Speaking,” a weekly radio drama, and now performs globally. info: www.telltrinity.com . Trinity@telltrinity.com Sponsored by: Provincetown Business Guild 800-637-8696 . www.ptown.org

June 25-July 8 . 2011

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out in the stars by charlene lichtenstein :: qnotes contributor

June 25 - July 8 Remember when we moaned and groaned about the cold weather? Well, that is ancient history as steamy July gets underway. Volcanic retrograde Pluto grabs all the attention as it squares Uranus and Saturn and opposes Venus, Mercury and the Sun. Hold onto your sun hats, kids, and prepare for a scorcher. CANCER (06.22-07.23) Expect a pothole, or, do I mean excitement, in one-to-one relationships. Gay Crabs love to be in love and there is nothing wrong with that. The problem is that you compromise too much in order to hold onto a relationship that no longer works for you. Assess where you are and what you need. Then don’t be afraid to make a move in one way or in the opposite. LEO (07.24-08.23) You are usually very graceful, proud Lion. But, this time period may bring with it a series of pratfalls and oopsies. Tread carefully. Watch your step. And, this also means that you need to carefully assess what you can and cannot accomplish at work. Don’t over promise. Considering everything, I recommend a long and luxurious vacation. That is if you don’t slip on the tanning butter. VIRGO (08.24-09.23) Not only will you have a spark of genius now, your inspirations can catch fire and burn any tipsy house of cards down. That means the old is passing away, leaving a wide space of opportunity for the new. Take advantage, queer Virgin. Let your imagination run wild and try to loosen yourself up with a variety of relaxation techniques. Anyone I know? LIBRA (09.24-10.23) Expect some dramatic changes around the house. That could mean

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anything from a redecoration, a renovation or even a complete move. Whatever you decide to do, it will involve a lot more planning than you first anticipate, so be prepared. Of course, you might just let things take their course as you continue to enjoy your current hovel’s unique charms. Ahem. SCORPIO (10.24-11.22) Anything you say, and even possibly anything you simply think, will take on an uncontrollable life of its own. Words can change the course of events as much as actions now. Consider very carefully what you say and how you say it. Queer Scorps are usually very political and strategic so there is hope that we can avert a world catastrophe. I said “hope.” SAGITTARIUS (11.23-12.22) As careful as you usually are with your dough, this is the time that you can see it rise and fall. Gay Archers need to keep a careful eye on their accounts — not only from themselves, but also from poachers. There will be those who try to ply your heart and take advantage of your generosity. It may be the summer, but you can still play Scrooge with gusto! CAPRICORN (12.23-01.20) Who you are and how you present yourself to the world will undergo a dramatic transformation, ready or not pink Cap! Your public face needs some updating and your range of contacts needs to be expanded. Why not now? Don’t rest on your laurels. Make it a point to point yourself into the epicenter of all the activity. By the fall you will be more than a minor celebrity. AQUARIUS (01.21-02.19) There is something going on in the background that can explode on the scene and bite you on the nose, or worse. Try to unload your baggage and rid yourself of anything that is holding you back psychologically. Try not to squelch or hide any secrets if you can, Aqueerius. They emerge anyway and in an uncontrollable way. So, manage, massage and triumph. PISCES (02.20-03.20) Expect a few surprises from so-called friends, Guppie. Not only are you taken by surprise, but you will also realize how your words and deeds can impact others. Maybe it will result in a good personal reassessment when the dust settles. At any rate, you will soon know who is on your side and who is not. But, who is who will be surprising and illuminating. ARIES (03.21-04.20) You will simply not be able to blend into the corporate wallpaper, proud Ram. Events conspire to make any professional move a gi-normous one now. Consider offers. That also means that you can’t get away with anything. No sitting on the Xerox machine. No lounging by the coffee machine. No nothing. Accept it and keep your nose clean until autumn. TAURUS (04.21-05.21) Travel will bring with it some, ahem, excitement now. But, this is not a bad thing. Queer Bulls can become too sedate and comfortable. Now, the new territories you explore, the things you see and the internationally intriguing people that you meet will all knock your socks off. If that makes you feel uncomfortable, maybe you should consider wearing flip flops. GEMINI (05.22-06.21) Your love life has a glow and intensity now. It can even change how you look at life and love in general. This means that for those pink Twins who find themselves entangled in lust and longing, there will be a point where you have to cut free. For those who are searching for connection, you may not only connect, but shock. Well, at least your summer is not boring! : : © 2011 Madam Lichtenstein, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Entertainment. info: Visit www.TheStarryEye.com 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.


Positive Postings

Where have all the Red Ribbons gone?

by Dale Pierce ~ Practice Manager/Ryan White Program Director

June 5, 2011 marks 30 years since the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report reported the first cases of AIDS in the U.S. It’s not the kind of anniversary we want to celebrate, but certainly one that needs to be remembered. I was just a kid — 10 years old at the time — when this issue came to the forefront of our country’s consciousness. Everywhere I looked on TV, award shows and at events, people, especially celebrities, were wearing red ribbons in support of those who were fighting against and dying from this horrible epidemic sweeping the nation. It became a symbol and a beacon of a moral consciousness that was sadly a necessity, but in its own way a remarkable movement and symbol of admiration and commemoration for those in and around the fight.

Since 1981 there have been unbelievable advances in therapy and treatment for HIV and AIDS patients. It seemed to those in the fight that they were not alone when they saw a celebrity or local politician or church member wearing a symbol of the cause. Year after year, as treatments got easier, we started to see less and less “red ribbon awareness.” It was almost as if AIDS was not the “cool, disease of the day” with the in-crowd. You hardly ever see a public figure wearing a red ribbon in public anymore. Gone are the days of Elizabeth Taylor and Michael Jackson standing tall and speaking out for the cause on our behalf. So, what does that mean? To me, it signals a renewed reliance on our own community of LGBT/HIV friends and supporters to again raise the trumpet sounds of the cause and bring awareness to this disease. People are still out there not getting tested, spreading the virus, infecting others, and losing their own battles. Is all the increase of new cases of HIV infections in minority groups and “resurgence” in the gay community of infections a result of this? Certainly wearing a red ribbon can not save a life? Can it? What it can do is certainly bring about a discussion of the disease and its circumstance to the forefront of our minds again. Would it be that hard for those of us who witnessed the fight in the 1980s and

1990s to dust off our ribbons and stand tall again? I think not. Stigma is a huge obstacle we face as providers of HIV services and certainly as patients battling the disease. We cannot defeat the forces that try to come against us until we agree to stand together again as one united front of positive and effective change. It is too important for any of us to remain silent anymore. With funding cuts being made every day to every HIV program imaginable, it is harder to get people who need assistance the good, quality medical care they need; not to mention their medications. Faith, charity and understanding are a cornerstone of what we all should aspire to. It is a moral and spiritual duty for us to take care of those in need. I would rather live a charitable life than one filled with misleading obligations of prosperity and self-indulgence, but that’s just me. Why? Because I hope that it is true what you put out in the universe you receive back. I truly believe that is the case and I am not taking any chances with the rules of karma. I can only hope that if I need help one day or someone in my family or close to me does, my kindness in the past can be reciprocated. Something for us all to think about, don’t you think? How about being proactive instead of needing to be reactive?

At Rosedale ID, our staff prides itself in helping spread the word. We have been a supporter of AIDSWALK Charlotte since we came into existence in 2006. We started last year holding our own major event, called An Evening of Hope and Inspiration, to bring the church community and the HIV community together to lay down differences and raise awareness. That event has just been scheduled for November 13, 2011, and will feature Dove award winners and Grammy nominated family group The Martins, as well as other exciting elements that we are looking to add to the bill as the event grows closer. Until an opportunity comes along for you to raise your voice in a big way, there are still things you can do to make a difference. Wear your red ribbons again. Hand red ribbons out to friends and family and ask them to wear them. Hug someone that you know is infected or affected by this horrible disease. Offer support to them in any way you can. Just making a phone call could make a difference in someone’s day. Don’t be afraid to speak up and tell your friends, neighbors, church family that YOU want to be a part of the solution of HIV and AIDS in America. Don’t be silent. Never let them tell you that you are too outspoken. Speak for all those who have no voice any longer. — Sponsored Content —

June 25-July 8 . 2011

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Planning for the future

T-Notes

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For couples who want/have children, the North Carolina Supreme Court has validated claims for joint custody for partners in the unfortunate event of a break-up. Finally, we all need to plan for end of life. A will provides directions for distributing your assets. As with medical issues, unless you say otherwise, your nearest legal relative in your biological family will inherit your stuff by default. If you have significant assets, a trust allows a way to transfer assets without going through the process of probate, which can be an expensive and time-consuming way to settle an estate. Life insurance is an easy way to provide for your loved ones after death. One of the simplest and most overlooked steps you can take before death is to outline your wishes for funeral/burial arrangements. Death is a difficult time for loved ones, but you can make things much easier by thinking about and detailing what kind of service or ritual you’d like for your funeral, and what should hap-

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pen to your body. It’s also good to list what accounts you have at what places, as well as list names and contact information for people to tell of your death. Learn more at carolinasendoflifecare.org. The Carolinas Center for Hospice and End of Life Care is an excellent resource for the final details of life/end-of-life planning, with FAQs and many sample documents. (Please consider Equality NC and our work for all LGBT North Carolinians as you plan for the future. Not only can you give us money directly now, but you can also designate us as a beneficiary in your will or life insurance policy. Equality NC, which coordinates our policy work, has a tax ID number/EIN of 02-0662714. Learn more about Equality NC at equalitync.org.) : : — This piece was originally published online at equalitync.org on March 9, 2010, and reprinted here with permission and updates. Neither qnotes nor Equality NC provides legal or fiscal advice. You should consult a lawyer or financial planner for issues dealing with money or the law.

reverse the legislature’s reversal of Nashville’s non-discrimination ordinance, according to blogger Chas Sisk of The Tennessean. I will refer you to Dr. Weiss’ insightful interpretation which makes the case for why SB632/HB600 is unconstitutional. Read the whole piece at bilerico.com/2011/05/tennessee_bill_to_ban_local_lgbt_non-discriminatio.php. She writes, “the key issue in terms of the constitutionality of SB 632 is whether its denial of rights to any groups outside of the approved state list has a rational relation to some legitimate state interest.” Tangentially is the issue of neutrality and how and why the bill was crafted and its intent, which was obviously targeted against the trans community. Within the language of the bill is a definition of sex which is blatantly discriminatory. “‘Sex’ means and refers only to the designation of an individual person as male or female as indicated on the individual’s birth certificate,” Weiss writes. Of course, the possibility exists that challenges to SB632/HB600 may exceed the ability of Tennessee to adjudicate and will end up in federal court. And, given the nature and composition of the Sixth District, as well as the U.S. Supreme court, there are hardly any guarantees regarding the disposition of laws states undertake to pass whose intent is to undermine equality in a way which seem to defy established law. : : — Comments and corrections can be sent to editor@goqnotes.com. To contact Robbi Cohn, email robbi_cohn108@yahoo.com..


audiophile

for Lady Gaga’s Monster Ball show in Charlotte last fall, they’ll be early Pride by david stout :: david@goqnotes.com events as much as they are music spectacles. This is particularly true for Britney’s coming to the Carolinas Pride Charlotte which will be held only a few days later, on Saturday the 27th. NC My Facebook alert was going Pride follows the concert by a month, taking place on Saturday, off like the Bat Phone after a Sept. 24. Gotham City prison break earlier I know that more than a few of my dear readers are going to this month letting me know that I be in an increasingly manic state as the concerts approach but, had a message‌and another‌ please, don’t flip out and shave your heads. Not everyone can and another‌and another‌and rock that look like Britney did. — well, you get the idea. Hmmm, had the Prince Harry sextape I’ve Steamrolling to the top been praying for finally come to British singer-songwriter Adele is the musical story of the light? Hey, hope springs eternal. year so far. While Lady Gaga’s new album has met with the garNo, it turns out that my gay male Fb friends were blowing up the gantuan sales everyone expected and Katy Perry and Rihanna internet over news that Britney Spears is bringing her Femme are still spinning off hits from their super successful 2010 Fatale Tour to the Carolinas for two dates. sets, nobody predicted Adele would soar into the star ranks According to the breathless posts (and later confirmed in America with the release of her chart-topping sophomore on Brit-Brit’s Facebook page), she’s going to be in Charlotte album “21â€? and its (at this writing still reigning) #1 smash single, at Time Warner Cable Arena on Wednesday, Aug. 24 and in “Rolling In The Deep.â€? Raleigh at the RBC Center the following night. Nicki Minaj is the The fact that the artist of the moment in pop is a woman support act for both stops, which start at 7pm. If the crowds at who writes her own material, sings like a dream and doesn’t these performances are anything like the one that came out

have the figure of a Victoria’s Secret model gives me hope that maybe a corner has been turned and a new era of artist authenticity is dawning. Or, maybe I should just accept that Adele is an anomaly in the pre-fab music industry and be happy that she exists at all and celebrate the fact that “today i-is Friday, Friday (Partyin’) / We-we-we so excited / We so excited / We gonna have a ball today.� Sigh. Slave to the rhythm I’m no preacher but I will prosylitize for artists and albums I love. Lately, I’ve been spreading the good news about singer Amalia and her killer CD “Art Slave.� This little-known gem from Stockholm, Sweden, is an on-the-money throwback to the mid80s soul style known as Boogie (think Midnight Star, Shalamar, Evelyn “Champagne� King, Kashif or The System). With the exception of one track — that flirts a little too much with hip hop to be authentic — the album is an uncanny recreation of the era that inspired it. Given my near obsession with soul/R&B music of the ‘80s, it’s no stretch to say that I’m a slave to Amalia’s art. If you give this fantastic album a listen, you’ll feel the same way. : : info: audiophile@goqnotes.com

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Hollywood Squares meets Broadway June 30 • Charlotte July 1 • Charlotte Hollywood Squares meets Broadway as One Voice presents an audience-interactive cabaret-style night to remember! Audience members will be chosen at random to be the contestants in our game show. The questions will be centered around the Broadway shows and performers being featured! Fun. Crazy. Innovative! Duke Energy Theater at Spirit Square, 345 N. College St. 7:30 p.m. $20. 704-372-1000. onevoicechorus.com.

June 25 • Durham Jimmy Creech Former pastor Jimmy Creech hosts a special meet-the-author event at the Durham County Library. Creech published this year his memoir, “Adam’s Gift,” which recounts Creech’s spiritual transformation that led him to become a fierce crusader for LBGT rights. Main Library, 300 N. Roxboro St. 3 p.m. Free. durhamcountylibrary.org. June 25 • Salisbury Salisbury Pride Community members celebrate their first LGBT Pride event in Salisbury. A festival with community leaders and entertainment is planned. E. Fisher St. 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Free. salisburypride.com. June 25 • Nags Head OBX Pridefest The Outer Banks’ first Pride festival is a threeday celebration of music, laughter and family and it’s at the BEACH in Nags Head! Over 30 entertainers, musicians, singers, dancers, comedians and bands. More details at obxpridefest.com. June 26 • Raleigh Gay & Gray Senior Social The LGBT Center of Raleigh hosts a social event for LGBT seniors and other community members at The View at Legends,  

330 W. Hargett St. 3 p.m.-6 p.m.   lgbtcenterofraleigh.com. June 26 • Winston-Salem Miss Gay Winston Salem America Preliminary pageant to Miss Gay NC America. AIDS Care Service will be on hand to promote awareness in the community as well as entertainers from across the state! Club Co2, 4019 Country Club Rd. 10 p.m.   336-908-2551. June 27 • Charlotte From Stonewall to Equality Temple Beth-El hosts a Stonewall commemoration to mark the historic event that inspired and transformed the landscape of gay activism and to share the experience of some members’ recent Washington weddings. Temple Beth-El, 5101 Providence Rd.   7 p.m. Free. 704-366-1948.   beth-el.com. June 30-July 3 • Charlotte Antiques show From apartments to million-dollar homes, you’ll find unique items to fit any style and budget at the International Collectibles and Antiques Show! Including: home decor, antiques, furniture, collectibles, art, jewelry, crafts and more. Metrolina Tradeshow Expo, 7100 Statesville Rd. icashows.com/ ICAShows.

Pride Charlotte Pageants Galore! Join Pride Charlotte and a host of pageant hosts for a series of contests leading up to one lucky girl’s chance to be named Miss Pride Charlotte. Pageants for Miss Pride Charlotte, Mr. Pride Charlotte MI and Mr. Pride Charlotte will be held throughout June and July. For more detailed information on each of these events and others, visit pridecharlotte.com/events/.

we want your who/what/where

July 1 • Charlotte Miss Gay Charlotte Latina America Scorpio hosts the official preliminary to the Miss Gay NC America Pageant. This year’s theme is “Independent Ladies.” Featuring Emory Starr, Erika Norell, Cachita from UNIVISION TV and others, with hostess Tiffany Storm. Scorpio, 2301 Freedom Dr. 3 p.m.-2:30 a.m. thescorpio.com. July 4 • Charlotte Presbyterian Hospital July 4th Spectacular Spend your Fourth of July with friends and family in Center City Charlotte at Memorial Stadium. 310 N. Kings Dr., for the Presbyterian Hospital July 4th Spectacular! Family-fun activities will take place from 4-9 p.m. Free admission! Alcohol free! Food, live music and more! findyourcenter.com. July 9 • Winston-Salem Film: ‘e-Cupid’ OUT at the Movies, Winston-Salem will screen the 2011 romantic comedy, “e-Cupid.” UNC School of the Arts ACE Theatre Complex, 1533 S. Main St. 7 p.m. $7/general. $6/students and seniors. outatthemovieswinston.org. July 14 • Raleigh Miss Bolinwood Pageant Flex hosts the Miss Bolinwood Pageant,

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events qnotes goqnotes.com/qguide/events

arts. entertainment. news. views. a fundraiser for the Crape Myrtle Festival. Events begin at midnight. Flex, 2 S. West. St. July 15-17 • Charlotte Charlotte Black Gay Pride The annual black LGBT Pride event in Charlotte, attracting 3,000-4,000 annually. For more information on various Pride and related events visit charlotteblackgaypride.com. July 28-Aug. 1 • Charlotte Triangle Black Gay Pride The annual black LGBT Pride event in the Triange, attracting approximately 2,000   annually. For more information, visit   triangleblackpride.org. Aug. 13 • Winston-Salem Film: ‘Longhorns’ OUT at the Movies, Winston-Salem will screen the 2011 comedy, “Longhorns.” Contains male frontal nudity. UNC School of the Arts ACE Theatre Complex, 1533 S. Main St. 7 p.m. $7/general. $6/students and seniors. outatthemovieswinston.org.

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Summer is here? What do you plan to do this year? A major vacation or low-key staycation? A weekend getaway to the mountains or beach? Tell us at goqnotes.com/to/qpoll

Submitting an event for inclusion in our calendar has never been easier: visit goqnotes.com/qguide/events/submit

Meetings: Program: Time: Membership: Information:

Third Thursday of every month, except when there is specialized programming, plus monthly socials to promote networking and friendship A wide variety of topics of interest to appeal to the diverse LGBT community After work with a cash bar social and heavy hor d’oeuvres with dinner and program following Visit the website for application options and benefits. Call 704.565.5075 or email businessguild@yahoo.com for more details or write to The Charlotte Business Guild P.O. Box 33371 | Charlotte, NC 28233

www.charlottebusinessguild.org June 25-July 8 . 2011

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QNotes June 25-July 8, 2011