shOUT! November 2009 Vol. 6 Issue 2
PRIDE PARADE: MU STUDENTS CELEBRATE LGBTQ PRIDE FINDING YOUR PLACE IN THE LGBTQ community: Queer people of color
RETIRED NFL PLAYER ESERA TUAOLO VISITS MIZZOU: DISCUSSES COMING OUT
LY, M A
PARTNERS IN CRIME: RELATIONSHIP AND SEXUAL VIOLENCE IN THE LGBTQ COMMUNITY
OUR NEWS, OUT LOUD!
MEET STAFF paul REEVES
Paul Reeves is a freshman by year and sophomore by credit, currently a major in pre-Journalism. Hailing from a small Kansas town, Paul is excited for the social justice and activism opportunities that come with college. He can often be found trolling Facebook writing obscure movie quotes on his friends’ walls.
Sean Jarvis is a junior staff member at the Center for Social Justice, working as LGBTQ Health Liaison. He’s majoring in Sociology and Linguistics, and plans to attend graduate school after he graduates in May 2011.
Naomi Lahiri is a senior at Mizzou; she is a dual-major in Social Work and Women’s and Gender Studies. Her passions include musicology, feminist theory, gender theory, and community activism. She volunteers at various agencies and non-profit organizations in Columbia and loves working with women and minorities.
Alex Pesek is a freshman majoring in English and Philosophy. He typically spends his days gorging himself on whatever vegetarian delights that can be had while watching clips of “The Real Housewives of New Jersey” on You-Tube. He also plays a lot of Frisbee (ultimate, not Frisbee golf), reads, and cleans for fun.
Ben Vigil, a sophomore, is a dual major in Journalism and Linguistics. His weekly activities include Allies in Action, Triangle Coalition, being a desk attendant and Hatch Hall president. In his “free time” he enjoys theatre, photography, tennis, soccer, walking around campus (weather permitting), reading, You-Tube-ing, and traveling.
Zach Rose-Heim is a senior Sociology major and the Editor-in-Chief of ShOUT!. He has been working at the LGBTQ Resource Center since his freshman year and enjoys working with others to promote social justice. He enjoys spending his free time watching shows on Hulu and playing games on Facebook.
magazine 2 | ShOUT!
a publication of MU’s LGBTQ resource center N214 Memorial Union (572) 884-7750 Editor-in-Chief: Zach Rose-Heim email@example.com
QUEER PEOPLE OF COLOR Finding a Place to Fit In: By Naomi Lahiri
iving in a country where you’re black, white, or of another race, you can’t imagine how confusing it was for me as an Indian to come out as a lesbian. It seemed that I was not only changing my sexual and gender identity, but also changing my race. There were so many representations of straight Indian women in the media and in my life that I could look up to, but I knew of no Indian lesbians to go to for advice or to look to as role models. So when I came out as a lesbian, I felt as if I was also coming out as white. I felt that I had to start acting and looking like white people in order to become a lesbian because the lesbian culture available to me was predominantly white. I identified as a lesbian for about a year and I became acculturated to white American lesbian culture. Lesbian culture in the United States is obviously very American and is inclusive to Americans, particularly white Americans… but I’m not white or American
so I didn’t feel at all represented. Furthermore, I obviously didn’t have access to lesbian culture in India or any queer Indians in my Midwestern college town, so I couldn’t really opt out of this overly white culture if I wanted to be around other lesbians. Well, I kept hearing the word “queer” and I noticed that I connected more with the people who identified as “queer.” None of these people were Indian, but a lot of them were also of color and they expressed some of the same frustrations that I had felt. They were all unique. So, I thought that this might be what I was looking for; there wasn’t a certain way I had to dress or a way I had to look. I felt that queer culture was something that I could create and recreate as I evolved and changed, because that’s what all the queer people I knew were doing. There was no set way of being that I had to adhere to in order to be queer, and I seemed to fit in with no effort.
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Early morning rain gave way to a gorgeous day, the perfect setting for the annual Coming Out Week Pride Parade. A group of about thirty people, some carrying flags and banners, met at the steps of Jesse Hall, and then went on a circular route throughout campus. With periodic cheers, large, colorful flags, and a large physical presence, the parade group could not be missed, highlighting the cultural visibility of LGBTQ individuals and allies on campus. It made the campus atmosphere more conducive to openness and free expression. Freshman Mary Novokhovsky, an ally for the LGBTQ cause, said that the experience, her first parade, was one in which she felt proud to be advancing campus-wide acceptance of LGBTQ students. “Some 4 | ShOUT!
people honked, some cheered,” she said. “Overall I just remember feeling, ‘they’re honking at us. I’m a part of the group that they are responding to, and displaying a message that they support.’ And I’m extremely proud of that.” Overall, the reception of the parade was warm. While seeing the large group of LGBTQ students and allies was, for some, an awkward appearance in the typical doldrums that make up walks to and between classes, many people high-fived, fist-pumped, and yelled in support. There were a few negative comments, but it became clear as the parade continued, that positive comments were the majority.
- Alex Pesek
PARTNERS IN CRIME RSVP: Relationship and Violence Prevention Center | Relationship & Sexual Violence in the LGBTQ Community By: Naomi Lahiri
elationship violence can be defined as “A pattern of violent (or) coercive behaviors whereby an LGBT individual seeks to control the thoughts, beliefs, or behaviors of her/his intimate partner or to punish the intimate partner for resisting the perpetrator’s control. This control is gained through fear and intimidation” (Renzetti, 1998; Peterman & Dixon, 2003). Also, as stated in a presentation from the Relationship and Sexual Violence Prevention (RSVP) Center, sexual abuse may be used to intensify isolation and control within domestic violence situations; it may occur alone and perpetrators who sexually abuse their partners often control victims by inducing shame, thereby silencing the victim and decreasing their willingness to involve others (even those who may have trust in the LGBT community). Kourtney Mitchell, a coordinator at the RSVP Center, explained that rates of violence are the same among LGBTQ relationships as they are in heterosexual relationships. In fact, one third of same-sex relationships reported relationship violence, which is similar to the rate for heterosexual couples (Turrell, 2000). The RSVP Center points out that these statistics refer to people in relationships with same-sex partners. However, these statistics do not represent those who identify as bisexual, queer, or transgender. Kimberly Scates, a graduate assistant and coordinator at the RSVP Center, explained some of the barriers to resources that victims of same-sex violence face. Due to • Over one third of gay/bisexual men and lesbians report a lifetime history of unwanted sexual intercourse resulting from threats or use of force. (Hickson et al., 1994; Kalichman et al., 2001; Waterman et al., 1998)
• Lesbians reported similar attempted number of date rapes by female partners as heterosexual women with male partners. (Brand & Kidd, 1986; Cortina, et al., 1998) • Gay and bisexual students reported higher rates of sexual victimization (including women) than heterosexual students as well as increased endorsement of rape myths. (Baier, Rosenzweig, & Whipple, 1991)
heterosexism, it is often assumed that male persons abuse female victims. Scates explained that this is problematic when women are victims of same-sex violence, and their perpetrator is able to receive services at the same shelter because the staff assumes that a woman cannot be a perpetrator. The abuser may also go to the shelter as a victim if the victim used self-defense against the perpetrator. It is also hard for men to receive adequate services when they are not allowed to stay in women’s shelters; shelters often provide shelter for men in motels but this tends to only be for a few days as opposed to women who usually receive shelter for one month. This issue of receiving services from a shelter can be compounded when the victim or survivor is not out as an LGBTQ individual; a victim may fear people finding out about their sexuality and react negatively. Victims may also fear that their friends in the LGBTQ community will find out and choose to believe their abuser, which could lead to isolation. Scates explained that the local Women’s Shelter takes precautions to ensure confidentiality with its clients and guarantee cultural awareness among its staff. The RSVP Center trains their campus educators on cultural awareness and inclusiveness in order to minimize barriers that LGBTQ victims face. Further actions that may silence an LGBTQ victim are the control and manipulation by the abuser who might convince the victim that society will not believe them. The victim may also be afraid of giving their community a bad reputation. • Completed Rape: 17.5% for gay/bi vs. 6% of hetero • Lesbians & Bi women may be more likely to be sexually harassed than heterosexual women on campus (Cortina, et al., 1998)
• 1 in 4 gay men have experienced domestic violence. Studies have shown this statistic to also be true for lesbian relationships as well as opposite-sex couples. (Stacey Mann, MSW, from the Kansas Coalition Against Sexual and Domestic Violence)
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SETBACK IN CIVIL RIGHTS maine voters reject same-sex marriage and a family attacked... seriously?
By: Lauren Olsen
ellow progressives, I am most displeased. Current events are looking grim from New England to here in mid-Missouri. With quality health care for all of us in jeopardy and an economy scrambling to get itself in order, I guess it could be easy to overlook local news and a tiny little ballot measure happening on the east coast during off-year elections. However, it’s when people miss these details that we get blindsided as much as we have in recent weeks. Working for social justice, I get quite comfortable in my queer, feminist, safe space/stronghold. It’s a warm little bubble where people are respectful and inclusive. Sometimes I forget that not all of the people in Columbia hold to these values. On Thursday, October 29th two brothers, James and Michael Pezold, originally from O’Fallon, MO were arrested at Wal-Mart for committing what was clearly a hate crime. The brothers had been circling the parking lot pelting families with racial slurs. This eventually led to James Pezold knocking a two-year-old child down with his vehicle and driving away. Fortunately, the child sustained minor injuries and no one else was physically harmed. Honestly. A two-year-old. Here in the Columbia that I have grown to naively consider a friendlier place for minorities than the town I grew up in. I have been sincerely disappointed. In not-so-local news, marriage equality has taken yet another upsetting blow. The feelings I have about Maine’s Proposition One debacle can be summed up pretty easily: Seriously!?! Seriously, Maine, I thought you had yourself together. However, 53 percent of voters said, “Yes” to this ballot measure and repealed the right for same-sex couples to marry in the state. I am genuinely surprised and upset, but should I be? It is the 31st time that marriage equality has failed as public referendum. You would have thought that after the massive, powerful backlash from the Prop 8 mess in Cali6 | ShOUT!
fornia that progressives would have been on the offensive to make sure it didn’t happen again. Where did we go wrong in Maine? All the coverage of the “No On 1” campaign showed them as organized and optimistic. I’ve been an intern on grassroots campaigns before and this shakes my faith in the work that organizers are doing. There are people on the far
Where did we go wrong in Maine?
right saying that what happened in Maine shows that the fight is over, that Americans truly aren’t interested in marriage equality. Their implication that there is no fight left in the queer community might be what pains me the most to hear, because I know that is far from the truth. At this moment, I find myself wondering where have all the safe spaces gone? If the coasts are not bulletproof from hypocrisy and hate crimes are happening in our backyard, where do we go? Equality seems scarce and fleeting, so I say we keep our eyes open to the events that don’t always make the headlines. I say we stay here and hold our ground in our corner of the world. Let’s make our warm and happy bubble of social justice just a little bit bigger.
Transgender Awareness Week an informational session on what it means to be trans and major trans issues
Monday, November 9th InsideOUT: Trans 101 6-8 pm in Memorial Union North 215
Monday, November 16th InsideOUT: Trans in Public 6-7 pm in Memorial Union North 215
a discussion of the ways that trans people negotiate their ways through public spaces
Tuesday, November 17th Transgender Health Panel 7:30-8:30 in Chamber Auditorium (New Student Center)
an informal session with a panel of health professionals about some of the medical aspects of what it means to be transgender
a brown-bag lunch with Wednesday, November 18th Professor Sam Bullington, who Questioning Conventional Transgender Narratives will be discussing the role that hegemonic 12-1 pm in Memorial Union North 215 narratives play in trans identity
a memorial service to remember those in the trans community who were lost to violence this year
Thursday, November 19 th Transgender Remembrance Vigil 7-8 pm in A.P. Green Chapel
Friday, November 20th Balloon Release and Reading of Names All Day in Speakerâ€™s Circle
balloons will be released to symbolize and pay tribute to members of the trans community who have been lost to violence
All events sponsored by the LGBTQ Resource Center and the Triangle Coalition. For ADA accommodations, please notify Ryan Black at firstname.lastname@example.org The LGBTQ Resource Center is an office within the Department of Student Life. Call (573) 884-7750 for more information.
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FORMER NFL PLAYER VISITS MU ESERA TUAOLO SPEAKS ABOUT COMING OUT IN THE NFL
D By: Alex Pesek
ozens of people gathered in the Bengal Lair in Memorial Student Union on Thursday, October 7th to hear the coming out story of Esera Tuaolo, a former NFL defensive tackle who, in 2002, came out on national television. He is only the second retired NFL player to do so. Tracing his memories of his sexuality and identity back to his childhood, Tuaolo described times in which he, growing up in the “not-so-glamorous” parts of Hawaii, saw hate in other children, who targeted the weak and the secluded. Seeing this, he said, “was enough of a reason to hide,” and to never allow himself to be targeted or made vulnerable. This defensive shell had been constructed in his rough youth days and manifested itself in a more extreme manner when he moved from Hawaii to Oregon State University, where he was recruited to play football. Tuaolo described emotionally the hyper-masculine, homophobic tensions that existed in locker rooms, both collegiate and professional, and his inability to say anything, do anything, or raise an issue against those who discriminated against the very thing with which he secretly identified. Having to exist in anonymity, said Tuaolo, “caused inner turmoil, shame, and suicidal thoughts.” Eventually, Tuaolo retired, both due to his age and, admittedly, the fact that the “salary was not worth living in constant anonymity and fear.” It was after his retirement that he appeared on “Real Sports” with Brian Gumbel in 2002. This appearance irreversibly changed his life. The process of coming out on camera took “almost ten shoots,” and was almost impossible to complete due to the “nausea” and “extreme anxiety” Tuaolo experience. Once he said the words that publicly revealed his sexuality, he felt “like a huge burden was lifted,” and he could finally feel comfortable in his own skin. Since those days, Tuaolo has been raising two children with his partner, working as a musical artist (his most recent album was sold at the event), and working with the NFL to give speeches to rookie 8 | ShOUT!
players, hoping to instill awareness and tolerance of minorities. He hopes to see change within the NFL, which he believes runs the risk of perpetuating the unsafe team atmospheres that Tuaolo suffered through for years. After Tuaolo gave his presentation, the floor opened to a Q&A session, and an autograph signing for his album, the proceeds of which went to charities close to Tuaolo.
Fun and Games
ACROSS 1. Over 1 in ___ gay/bi men and lesbians reported a lifetime history of unwanted sexual intercourse resulting from threats or use of force. 4. Place where this year’s annual Pride Parade rout started. 5. Place where 2 year old was struck by a motor vehicle. 8. 1 in 5 ____ people have unstable housing (abbreviation). 10. Name of the chapel where the Transgender Remembrance Vigil will be held. 11. Word reclaimed by many members of the LGBT community; it serves as an umbrella term. 12. Training provided by the LGBTQ Resource Center to help make campus safer place for members of the LGBTQ community. 14. Queer People of Color (acronym). 10 | ShOUT!
DOWN 1. Last name of former NFL player who came out as gay after quitting the NFL. 2. _________ Union - location of the Center for Social Justice. 3. Topic for InsideOUT’s Transgender Awareness Week discussion (3 words). 6. State who recently struck down samesex marriage statue. 7. Relationship and Sexual Violence Prevention (acronym). 9. Panels provided by the LGBTQ Resources Center to promote understanding. 13. MU’s Transgender discussion group.
Answers are located on back cover.
Contributors Lauren Olson and Crystal Rosemann wanted to let people of all shapes and sizes in the queer community make a statement about their bodies or any stereotypes that have been used against them in particular. What better way than through art? The photos feature one person standing partially nude behind a large poster board with a personal statement written upon it. Weâ€™re hoping this will be a continual piece of work that keeps growing with time. For more information, contact Lauren Olson or Crystal Roseman.
Ongoing Resource Center Programs Inside OUT The InsideOUT program seeks to provide a forum for discussion on issues affecting LGBTQ individuals and their allies. The discussion is a safe space for using each other as a resource for learning. Through building understanding and consensus, we hope to create posi-
tive personal and societal transformations together. Discussions are facilitated by LGBTQ Resource Center staff members in N 214 Memorial Union, every Monday from 6-7 p.m. For more information, contact Sean Jarvis at email@example.com.
Safe Space The Safe Space symbol represents a message to LGBTQ sutdents, faculty, and staff that people displaying it are understanding and supportive of LGBTQ individuals who are seeking help, advice or simply someone with whom they can talk. The Safe Space program is designed to help LGBTQ people identify supportive
people and spaces. The two-hour training focuses on consciousness raising and education about identities concerning sex, gender, and sexual orientation and the issues which the LGBTQ community faces in thier daily lives. To schedule a training, please contact Kevin at firstname.lastname@example.org.
OUTReach The purpose of the OUTReach program is for student peer educators to work to promote visibility and safety for queer people on and off campus. The OUTReach Peer Education Panel promotes a more inclusive environment by challenging stereotypes and correcting
misinformation, with the goal of keeping the atmosphere relaxed, open and informal. To become a panelist or to schedule a speaker, please contact Keri at email@example.com.
Fluidity Fluidity is a transgender discussion and support group. Our goal is to provide the support network that many transgender people do not have in their lives. We invite all transgender people, out of the closet or not, to come and join us. The group is completely anonymous
and one may speak as much or as little as one may like. Fluidity meets at 7 p.m. on Tuesday nights. For more information, contact Emily Colvin at emilyscolvin@ gmail.com.
Queer People of Color (QPOC)
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gender, and sexuality. QPOC intends to allow an opportunity for students to enhance and develop a supportive community. For more information, please contact Ashley Price firstname.lastname@example.org.
1. walmart 2. tuaolo 3. three 4. rsvp 5. jesse 5. maine 6. memorial 7. apgreen 8. transinpublic 9. queer 10. trans 11. qpoc 12. outreach 13. safespace 14. fluidity
Queer People of Color (QPOC) is a discussion group open to students, staff, and faculty that seeks to provide a safe space for people of color within the LGBTQ community and its allies. QPOC offers outreach and opens the dialogue about the intersections of race,