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shOUT

Dec. 6, 2004 - Vol. 1 - Issue 1

Magazine

The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Ally Magazine of Mizzou Sponsored by the LGBT Resource Center - 884-7750 - 216 Brady E-mail comments to Editor-in-Chief Julia Luscher - jclppb@mizzou.edu

MSA Candidates Champion Diversity

By Julia Luscher

The student body presidential election has not yet been finalized, giving the two candidates in a runoff election more time to air issues concerning the LGBT community. The Missouri Students Association has scheduled a runoff election between Ben Coen/Craig Kleine and Tony Luetkemeyer/Cheryl Tomes from Dec. 6 to 8. None of the four slates in the initial election from Nov. 8 to 10, received the required 35 per cent of the vote. Neither the Coen/Kleine or Luetkemeyer/Tomes slates initially included any issues directly related to the LGBT community as part of their platforms, but both want to promote diversity on campus. Coen and Kleine want to add diversity and tradition to MU’s core values, in addition to the current values of respect, responsibility, discovery and excellence. “Adding diversity as a core value is adding a face to the problem,” Coen said. “If we could say diversity is a core value, it could open up

the door for more incoming minority students.” Coen also wants to require freshmen to take part in diversity training either through Summer Welcome or Freshmen Interest Groups. “That’s where we’d get outside of the box and beyond just racial terms,” Coen said of his plan to enhance diversity at MU. Luetkemeyer and Tomes are not advocating adding diversity as a core value because Luetkemeyer said MU should not label something that is in such a rocky state. “Obviously diversity is an invisible concept,” Luetkemeyer said. “Changing the mind sets of other students, whether it be on homosexuality or cultural background, is what’s important.” Luetkemeyer wants to increase the number of minorities on campus and said he has been thinking about benefits for homosexual faculty members, although he has no plans to institute benefits at this time. “I fully support the rights of all faculty members, regardless of their sexual orientation,” he said. Although neither slate is championing any specific LGBT issues, both said, if elected, they were willing to work with the LGBT community should any campus concerns arise. “We do not understand every single issue on campus,” Luetkemeyer says. “There are too many student organizations pushing for different issues, but as we become aware of them, we can start working on those issues.” ..to write for shOUT Magazine next semester. “I’m sure we could work with the LGBT Resource Center,” Coen said of his slate. “We’re always willing Come to the organizational meeting to work with anyone. We’re Monday, Jan. 24 at 5 p.m. here for the students, and we in the LGBT Resource Center, 216 Brady. love doing stuff for them.”

We Want

YOU

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nEWS Conference Says Suicide Community Issue By Julia Luscher The touchy issue of suicide became the topic of time structuring thought about a crime where the a statewide conference hosted at MU in November perpetrator and the victim are one and the same. for college faculty, staff and students about the “We talked about how construing suicide eighth leading cause of death in the United States. in society as only a personal act is harmful. The conference, organized by Partners It also has an impact on the community.” in Prevention, a coalition of the 12 publicly Coping with suicide is a challenge for any funded universities in Missouri, focused on community, but has the potential to impact the recognizing suicidal symptoms and helping LGBT community in a much more detrimental way friends in need. Many questions were raised since the community is already forced to overcome and answered about the complex subject. numerous other issues such as gaining equal “How do you know who is at risk? How rights and personally dealing with coming out. do you help them?” asked Joan Masters, “As a staff member on campus, I try to keep coordinator of Missouri Partners in Prevention. my eyes and ears open to see what’s going on in the After professionals helped them answer those lives of students,” Brigham said. “On my own, I put questions, she said it was important to further supportive words out there. I use reflective listening process how suicide affects the MU campus. practices and will be sure to refer people to resources “The next step is to think about the population as necessary, but it’s rarer that someone will walk into that is most at risk. Some students are not getting a councilor’s office to talk about suicide ideations.” the support they need, like the LGBT community,” she said. Although there is little quantitative data to verify that the LGBT community is most at risk, LGBT Resource Center Is celebrating its ONE-YEAR ANNIVERSARY! Coordinator Adam Brigham said ENJOY OUR WINTER OUTPOURING OF GIFTS & MIRTH AT OUR he has witnessed firsthand the powerful impact suicide has had on the LGBT community. “I know it occurs through ATURDAY EC TH FROM TO readings and qualitative studies,” Brigham said of high quantities of If you haven’t found us yet, it’s time! We are a variety store of local & suicides and attempted suicides global art and craft, with books, wearables, and a profusion of weird in the LGBT community. “I know & wonderful treasures for you and yours. Here you’ll find the oddest from conversations with the gay, selection of things to satisfy your most complex gift-giving needs. lesbian and allied community even though the numbers TUESDAY – SATURDAY 11-6 are had to come by in LGBT youth.” Brigham said SPECIAL NOTE: WE ARE TOTALLY SCARF CENTRAL! he hard a hard 79867

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nEWS Committee Planning for Partner Benefits

By Julia Luscher

Students are not the only ones that face discrimination on campus. Not all faculty and staff receive the same benefits because MU does not offer any domestic partner benefits to employees who have partners to whom they are not married. The Status of Women Committee has prioritized domestic partner benefits as one of the main issues it will work toward this year. Linda Reeder, associate professor of history and Status of Women Committee member, will chair the internal committee. “It’s certainly not going to happen in a year,” Reeder said of instituting domestic partner benefits at MU. “We need to identify who we can target. Brady Deaton might be someone who could be a conduit for us.”

The committee’s main objective now is to prepare the groundwork for future action. “I can safely say that we will complete a more comprehensive report regarding our peer institutions, and the importance of benefits for recruitment and retention,” Reeder said. “It is a recruitment and retention issue, apart from being a human rights issue. We’re going to lose faculty, both heterosexual and homosexual because there are a lot of people who aren’t married.” Reeder said the situation in Jefferson City after the Missouri constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage was passed might make it difficult to institute domestic partner benefits. She said legislators were upset over the inclusion clause MU passed to include nondiscrimination of sexual orientation in its policy last year, and are not likely to be accepting of other issues dealing with sexual orientation. “Given the current climate in Jeff City, I don’t know if people will be willing to fight for it,” Reeder said. “The climate feels so bad that I don’t know if people are willing to speak out and be identified.” Reeder would like to see faculty and staff members file grievances. Aside from encouraging them to do so and preparing research on domestic partner benefits to deliver to the administration, Reeder is unsure what else the committee can do at this point. “With all the amendment protecting marriage crap, there’s been a lot of ‘We’re not against gays, we just want to protect this [marriage] institution.’ Maybe somehow we can use that to our advantage,” she said. While other committees may be addressing this issue of equal benefits for all faculty and staff, the Status of Women Committee appears to be the most dedicated to the cause. “It’s a feminist issue and a women and gender issue. It’s not just women anymore, it’s about gender equity,” Reeder said.

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opiNION Welcome Allies with Open Arms to Foster Community In the aftermath of the election, many fight to gain laws that protected the safety and members of the LGBT community have felt well-being of children. As a result, by gaining the backlash of a widespread intolerance that the support of others who may have been or has created a barrier to achieving equal rights. simply felt excluded, each movement gained Although the results momentum and made steps have been discouraging, they toward a goal of equal rights. have shown a greater need With this in mind, it is for an organization and active essential that as a group, we involvement in the community. extend our reach not only to each More so, it has shown a need for other, but to members outside the support, not solely from members LGBT community. One need not be of the LGBT community, but homosexual, for example, to aid in also from the society around us. the movement for equal rights; this In recent years, members of is a message that must be spread other equal rights movements have throughout the larger society. begun to reject separatist notions, It is not enough to gain the and have reached out to other support of other members within the By Monique Quayle members and groups in society. LGBT circle. Such a comparatively Some feminists, for instance, small population cannot afford have widely advocated the involvement of men to be isolated from the larger society. within the feminist movement. As a result, more Within this specific community, it is men can be found offering support to feminism. true that individuals also deal with other Other feminists made clear the notion that issues in addition to that of sexual identity. equal rights movements These issues, such as race, are widespread, as author gender, ethnicity, religion bell hooks notes in her and others are some that “It is not enough to gain the 2000 book “Feminism are also relevant to those support of other members is for Everybody.” Men, outside of the community. teens, mothers, adults, It is important within the LGBT circle. Christians, house wives, to create a forum for Such a comparatively women at work and the discussion of these small population cannot others were encouraged issues within the LGBT afford to be isolated to join and support the group, so that others feminist movement. outside the community from the larger society.” Other equal rights may be drawn in, and an movements, such as alliance may be formed. those which are raceBy bringing centered, have also extended their welcome these issues to the surface within the LGBT to members of society. It was not community, others will be involved as well, necessary to be black to fight and the message that is spread will be one racism and discrimination, nor was that many others can understand: We are it necessary to be a child in order to walking this path toward equal rights together.

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opiNION Campus Climate, Discrimination Prove Frustrating The holidays are here. The lights are strung, the office buildings and homes with feather boas and snow has begun its season long descent upon midleopard print ottomans; lesbians are not itching to Missouri, and people are spreading good cheer. There’s line every shop window with power tools. Additionally, something else being spread here at MU though, transgendered and transsexual persons are not and it’s somewhat less lighthearted. freaks of nature, nor are bisexuals It’s intolerance, and it’s got to stop. automatically promiscuous. Allies of What do I mean by this? What’s so these groups of people are not sick. awful that it seems to be dampening my These stereotypes are way out of holiday spirit? The intolerance of which line and so are the beliefs some people I speak is that of sexual diversity. This is have about the cruel intentions and not to say that everyone on campus is hidden agendas of the LGBT community. like this. In my few short months here For those people who are made at MU, I’ve met some amazing people, uncomfortable by homosexuality, who people who are accepting and loving are scornful of people who love differently and warm regardless of the fact that than you do, who are terrified that being when it comes to sexual orientation, near members of the LGBT community I’m different from them. But it seems will turn them into raging homosexuals By Sarah Landolfi these wonderful individuals are not themselves, please stop and think representative of campus as a whole. about the repercussions of your actions. The fact is, a few people who don’t believe that People who happen to date other people of their lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered people are own sex are not monsters. They are not heathens. justified in their sexual behaviors make all the difference. They do not have scales beneath their clothing. The vast majority of people I’ve encountered have They are not contagious; they are not even sick. shown me nothing but support, but those people who Realize that your hurtful words and dismissive have made it difficult for those actions hurt their feelings. I different from them should know it may come as a shock look inside themselves for that to learn that, yes, they have “The fact is, a few people tolerance we so sorely need, feelings after all. But they do, who don’t believe that this time of year especially. and treating them like secondThe first step in working class citizens is inevitably lesbian, gay, bisexual to lower this intolerance is going to hurt those feelings. and transgendered education. People who don’t The giving season we’ve people are justified in understand homosexuality and entered into may be driving me its many facets are much more toward this plea more avidly their sexual behaviors likely to regard it with disdain. than before, but members of the make all the difference.” What most people don’t LGBT community – like myself comprehend about its nature – have been dumped on long is that at the end of the day, enough. It’s true LGBT people, like heterosexuals, are just people who that the holidays are upon us, but please love other people. They aren’t out to get straight people; consider changing your ways not only this they aren’t plotting to overthrow the government. December, but also in the months that Gay men are not collectively anxious to redecorate follow this time of giving and good spirits.

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grEEK Progressive Fraternity Hits Roadblock By Julia Luscher

A progressive fraternity could be just what MU needs to start its diversity makeover. At least that’s what junior Dustin Hampton thought. For almost two years he tried to launch Delta Lamba Phi (DLP), a national social fraternity for gay, bisexual and progressive men, but recently gave up because he continually fell short of finding enough people to support the venture. “I thought it would provide a good social and service aspect and be a good addition on campus,” Hampton said. “After the inclusion policy passed, this would be taking it a step further.” MU passed a resolution to include sexual orientation in its nondiscrimination policy in October of 2003. Hampton said even before then he was pushing hard to start the fraternity. “My first impression from Greek houses was that I saw them as extremely homophobic,” Hampton said of why he was wary to get involved in traditional fraternities. “I had just come out in high school and didn’t want to be put back in the closet.” DLP was founded nationally in 1986 and currently has 20 chapters and 10 colonies across the United States. DLP does not have any chapters or colonies in Missouri. Hampton’s interest in the fraternity was sparked nearly two years ago, at which time he found a staff sponsor and began his struggle to recruit members. “I had an e-mail campaign out to people I knew and had about four or five people interested,” Hampton said. The fraternity needed at least eight members to form a colony on campus. “We went for about a year and had meetings about once a month with pizza and a movie, but there never seemed to be much interest besides the social aspect.” Hampton tried to advertise and had two poorly attended campus-wide organizational meetings. “It didn’t help my ambition a whole lot,” he said of early recruitment challenges. “Over [summer] break we were going to work on getting the paperwork started for a charter, but there was no response from the other members.” This semester Hampton became president of the Triangle Coalition, an organization of gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and ally students on campus. The new responsibility led him to rethink all the time and effort he was investing in his quest to start DLP on campus with almost no response. “If there was interest, I would love to work on it again,” he said. “The problem

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is some of the people involved have graduated or left the university, so we would have to find a new set of people.” The work Hampton put into to attempting to organize the fraternity caused him to revisit his initial judgment on the Greek system as an entirely homophobic entity. “There are other fraternities that are open and accepting,” he said. “I found that I had made a snap judgment of the Greek community that was misguided. Some houses are homophobic, but some are very open and accepting. They’re individual, and I was grouping them.” Even though some Greek houses are fairly open and accepting, Hampton thought the progressive fraternity would better cater to the needs of gay men and help them form a tighter knit community.


entertainMENT Rufus Wainwright Album Has Truth, Talent

By Justin Scott

Rufus Wainwright is hardly a household name in mainstream music. Most know him as the voice of “Hallelujah” in the 2001 blockbuster movie “Shrek.” His voice has also been heard in “I am Sam,” “Zoolander,” “Moulin Rouge” and “Big Daddy.” Bridging the gaps between pop, opera and dinner theater music, Wainwright has proven that no genre is out of his reach, and he leaves few genres untouched in his new album. Famous for his sometimes gravely voice and always for his ability to hold a note, his works are not quite radio-friendly. If you have not previously been exposed to Wainwright, it is certain that his voice will linger in your mind once you hear his new album. In his fourth complete album, “Want Two,” released Nov. 16, Wainwright gives his listeners what

Rufus Wainwright “Want Two” Geffen Records Nov. 16, 2004

essentially did not fit on the aptly named “Want One.” This album, delayed some eight months, also includes a live concert DVD. If you have not been to a Rufus Wainwright concert, here is your chance. “Want Two” picks up where “Want One” left off with introspective, politically charged lyrics topped off with humorous nuggets. However, following up “Want One” was certainly a daunting task, and “Want Two” may leave you slightly disappointed in comparison. The songs lack the witty and emotional writings that made “Want One” such a wonderful album. Exploring his lost love, drug abuse problems and discontent with President Bush and his administration, Wainwright truly opens himself for all to hear. “Waiting for a Want EP,” released late this summer, features most of the better songs on this album. “The Art Teacher,” “Gay Messiah,” “This Love Affair” and “Waiting for a Dream” best highlight Wainwright’s ability to infuse his songs with powerful emotions and witty, if not catchy, lyrics. Wainwright sings about his life, allowing his fans to follow his ups and downs with each track. There is much truth found behind the lyrics; so much in fact, that “Want One” had a “secret” Web site where Wainwright himself explained the meaning of each song. “This Love Affair” and “Waiting for a Dream” are about as haunting as Poe’s near-perfect album “Haunted,” written after the death of her father Tad Danielewski. As a side note, I suggest you read her brother’s semi-autobiographical novel, “House of Leaves” and listen to “Haunted” to get a chilling, entertaining experience. In the end, this album is certainly a must-buy, if not for the 12-track CD, for the 21 track DVD accompaniment.

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heALTH Tobacco Industry Leaves LGBT Community in Cloud of Smoke By Julia Luscher

Smoking could be a potentially self-defeating political act for LGBT individuals, research shows. “The tobacco industry uses icons associated with our community. It gives money to our associations, but it gives more money to our adversaries in the legislature,” said Dean Andersen, research specialist in the rural sociology department. Andersen presented, “How the Tobacco Industry Exploits the LGBT Community,” on Nov. 16. His presentation was part of MU’s celebration of the Great American Smokeout, sponsored by the Wellness Resource Center. Nearly half of the LGBT population nationwide are smokers, which is almost double the percentage of smokers in the general population. This is no coincidence. The tobacco industry actively targets the LGBT community. “Our media is not very expensive compared to mainstream media, and we have a strong sense of loyalty to corporations that validate us,” Andersen said. The tobacco industry started advertising in the gay community in 1992, and since then smoking within the LGBT community has doubled. “The tobacco industry feeds off victimizing us, but they don’t portray it that way,” Andersen said. “They see us as a way of making money, like the fact that we’re disenfranchised makes us an easy target. We don’t have to buy into those negative messages.” Many tobacco companies try to target people who are just coming out, when they are most vulnerable. Ads are placed in LGBT-specific media and the community is even targeted in mainstream media by the tobacco industry advertising smoking as a right, which resonates well with a community constantly fighting to gain political and social rights. “The code word for the LGBT community is ‘rights,’” Andersen said. “What the tobacco industry doesn’t tell us is that in exhibiting our right to

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smoke, we’re throwing away our right to good health.” Not only is good health at risk, but those political and social rights the community fights so hard to receive are also in danger. “Many of the legislators they support are often the most anti-gay,” Andersen said. “When we give money to the tobacco industry, we’re actually financing the political campaign against us.” Andersen said the community needs to fight the overwhelming prevalence of smoking together. Some of the problem is that much of gay culture revolves around bars, and smoking is used as a way to complement that atmosphere. Smokers create a social norm, which leads to unconscious encouragement of the habit within the LGBT community. “We have a responsibility to do what we can to educate our community and promote wellness instead of undermine it,” Andersen said. “The most effective way to do intervention in the LGBT community is to get through the lies of the tobacco industry. “Smoking is not a moral issue,” he said. “Smoking kills 50,000 LGBT Americans every year, which is more than AIDS, gay bashings and all other drugs combined.”


[SH]OUT Vol. 1 Issue 1  

[SH]OUT Magazine is a voice for Mizzou's Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer and Ally students, focusing on many issues faced on the...

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