Page 1


2 • The Rainbow Times • TheRainbowTimesMass.com • 10th Year Anniversary

April 6, 2017 - May 3, 2017


April 6, 2017 - May 3, 2017

10th Year Anniversary • TheRainbowTimesMass.com • The Rainbow Times • 3


4 • The Rainbow Times • TheRainbowTimesMass.com • 10th Year Anniversary

April 6, 2017 - May 3, 2017


10th Year Anniversary • TheRainbowTimesMass.com • The Rainbow Times • 5

April 6, 2017 - May 3, 2017

Homeless LGBTQ youth still living on the margins, advocates say By: Jenna Spinelle/TRT Reporter

By the numbers In 2006, the National LGBTQ Task Force (https://goo.gl/kOU1Rz) estimated that 40 percent of homeless youth identified as LGBTQ. Thanks to work done by the Massachusetts Special Commission on Unaccompanied Homeless Youth, the picture of what that population looks like locally is clearer. An unaccompanied homeless youth, according to the Commission, is defined as someone under the age of 24 who is not

PHOTO: © CREATIVECOMMONSSTOCKPHOTOS | DREAMSTIME STOCK PHOTOS

IN THE LIMELIGHT

BOSTON—One of the first stories The Rainbow Times published on its first issue in 2007 characterized the issue of homeless LGBTQ youth as an “uncountable epidemic” (https://goo.gl/kzkHIF) A decade later, academic research on this group has improved and there are plans in place for moving forward, but the organizations advocating for change are struggling to maintain the status quo amid political and financial challenges. “Six months or a year ago, I felt cautiously optimistic that we were moving forward,” said Grace Sterling Stowell, executive director of the Boston Alliance of Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transgender Youth (BAGLY; www.bagly.org). “Massachusetts has been a leader in many ways, but now all of our communities are just trying to survive.”

under the care of a parent or guardian and does not have a permanent, stable place of residence. The commission conducted a statewide survey known as the Youth Count in 2014, making Massachusetts the first state in the U.S. to gather comprehensive data on

homeless minors. The group reported (https://goo.gl/Rr89xI) that roughly 14 percent of the 795 respondents who met the criteria of an unaccompanied homeless youth identified as LGBTQ. Since its formation in 2012, the commission has worked to standardize information

collection across government agencies and nonprofits working with homeless youth to gain a more accurate assessment of a population that’s often transient and reluctant to provide information.

See LGBTQ Youth on Page 23


6 • The Rainbow Times • TheRainbowTimesMass.com • 10th Year Anniversary

April 6, 2017 - May 3, 2017

Sanctuary for Peace: The will of the people vs. the arrogance of ignorance By: Nicole Lashomb*/TRT Editor-in-Chief

A

OPINIONS

fter a long and contentious battle for passage of the Sanctuary for Peace Ordinance, the Salem, Mass. City Council ultimately approved the measure on March 29 in a 7-4 vote. As any ordinance in the city, there has to be a second passage with a majority vote in order for it to become local law. Councilors will be casting their second vote on April 13 at Salem City Hall at 7 p.m. This preliminary victory allowed many to sleep better that night — albeit only a few hours since the meeting went until the wee hours of the morning—knowing that the majority of the councilors did the right thing to protect our immigrant community. It was invigorating to see that of 90 Salem residents that lined the walls of Bentley School’s cafetorium to address the council on the Ordinance, 88 percent spoke in favor of its passage. Perhaps the biggest and most welcomed surprise of the night came from Councilor Steve Dibble, a once vocal opponent of the ordinance, who changed his vote in support of it mid-session. Something magical happened that night—something that made many of us proud. After dedicating our collective selves to the advocacy and activism surrounding this issue for several weeks and months, it was clearly a win for thousands of city residents that value social justice. However, taking part of the 4-hour public hearing/special meeting and listening to the councilors debate the issue, especially those that echoed the exact points and myths that have been

IF MEMBERS OF THE SALEM CITY COUNCIL HAVE NOT GONE THROUGH THE EXPERIENCES THAT OTHER MARGINALIZED GROUPS FACE, HOW CAN THEY POSSIBLY UNDERSTAND THE PLEAS AND PLIGHTS OF THE DISENFRANCHISED? debunked repeatedly by experts, left me disturbingly unsettled and looking ahead to the coming weeks and months. The results, events and conversations that have ensued throughout the process of the Sanctuary for Peace Ordinance's passage, serves as a clear indication of what is to come. Progressive residents are not willing to stand by the status quo any longer. We are not willing to accept anything less than equality for all residents. We will not stand

FAITH

Pure gold for my gay Christian soul, no less By: Paul P. Jesep*/TRT Columnist ecently, a friend e-mailed a IT’S ABOUT LIBERATION AND link about a fun, wonderful dance routine choreographed EMPOWERMENT WHILE CHANto the music of “Rock of My Soul in the Bosom of Abraham” (https://goo.gl/tP0z0W). My friend, a very committed Episcopalian, wrote in NELING AND NURTURING POSIthe e-mail regarding the YouTube video clip, “Pure gold for my southern gay TIVE SPIRITUAL ENERGY. Christian soul!”

R

It is gold and you don’t have to be Christian, Episcopalian, or Southern to enjoy the clip. Although as a spiritual being (even if you are an atheist), this Christian expression will resonate. It’s about liberation and empowerment while channeling and nurturing positive spiritual energy. Two handsome gents from theatre company Theaterhaus Stuttgart (https://goo.gl/SSf0s9) in yellow shirts, bluish-purple socks, white checkered-shorts, and perfectly polished light brown shoes dance in an organic, yet disciplined manner. They are exhaustingly talented. Why is the Theaterhaus Stuttgart interpretation of “Rock of My Soul” relevant to every LGBTQ person regardless of his or her belief? This gospel-spiritual is about love and LGBTQ justice. In the Hebrew Scriptures the bosom of Abraham is a place of safety and comfort in a cold, harsh world where the righteous dead await judgement before joining God. Abraham was known for his love of God and for

hospitality to strangers, including outcasts. In the Gospel of Luke (16:22-23) (https://goo.gl/0WVpBU) Lazarus the beggar dies and is “carried by the angels to Abraham’s bosom.” In contrast, the rich man dies and is buried reflecting his attachment to materialism. The unnamed rich man is forgotten. God never forgets Lazarus. Abraham can mean heaven or a loving parental figure. Abraham’s bosom is like a parent who rocks and cradles a baby in his or her arms. It’s a place where the sick or frightened can go and be comforted. Many years ago, I heard a recording of “Rock of My Soul.” There are many versions and interpretations of this African-gospel masterpiece. Legendary jazz musician Louis Armstrong did a great rendition. My chain-smoking Aunt Pauline and her yelping mousey dogs loved Louis. It’s probably when I first heard “Rock

See Pure Gold on Page 10

by while atrocities are committed against any member of any marginalized group. We do not accept discrimination of any kind and we will certainly organize, mobilize and rise up to counter these injustices at any time and place, regardless of sleet and snow as we saw at the Sanctuary for Peace rally or at a packed cafetorium at Bentley School. When any of our residents are under attack locally, or otherwise, we will be there—and we expect our “elected” officials to do the same. However, what we also learned that night is that not all of our councilors represent the overall values of the city. We learned that the historic mentality of the past has no place in the present. Despite how grand this victory, the fact is that four councilors still adamantly voted against the ordinance. Without an iota of compassion and understanding detectable, one by one uttered the words “no” without hesitation, shattering the hopes of the majority in attendance. To these councilors, nothing made a difference. The personal testimonies heard from children and local students, immigrants, community leaders, the faith community, non-profit organizations, for-profit businesses and 88 percent of the room didn’t matter to them and, if it did, they didn’t budge. An overall progressive city must have progressive leaders if we are to continue to make strides ahead socially, economically and educationally. If we are to be competitive, we must be inclusive. It is the right thing to do morally and fiscally, contrary to what the conservative movement may tell you. Repeated studies have shown that immigrants boost the U.S. economy’s vitality, just in case the moral issue doesn’t resonate. Last year, The Nation reported that “according to the state and local tax data analysis—published by the Institute on

Letters to the Editor

[Re: A Rebuttal to the Salem News Strategic Opinion on the Sanctuary for Peace Ordinance] Dear Editor, Bravo! Unfortunately, the people who need to read this probably won’t. As George Lakoff wrote in his wonderful book ‘Don’t Think of an Elephant,’ people vote for perceived morality, even to their own detriment, and when faced with the facts. Salem once again demonstrated its place at the forefront of inclusion and diversity. —Steve Harrington, Online [Re: Mass. New Legislative Session: Strong Support for LGBTQ, Youth, Seniors and Women] Dear Editor, Thanks for this article. We really need to step up and support our statewide LGBTQ+ advocacy organizations, which are trying to do a lot with small budgets. I’m a donor to MassEquality and to the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition, and I hope that if you are reading this you will consider supporting them as well. —Robyn Ochs, Online

Taxation and Economic Policy (ITEP)— undocumented immigrants contribute about $11.6 billion to the economy annually, including nearly $7 billion in sales and excise taxes and $3.6 billion in property taxes,” the publication read. “They are, in economic terms, productive citizens, and pay a higher effective tax rate than the top 1 percent income bracket.” It is critically important, now more than ever, to get involved in the upcoming November 2017 municipal election. In a city like Salem, widely known throughout the region to be a progressive haven, it is unacceptable to have 4 councilors—3 of whom are “at-large” and represent our entire diverse city—take a firm stand against protecting all of our residents, without apparent reason. Moreover, it is more astounding to have an all-white city council, which decisively is not representative of Salem’s ever-evolving population. If members of the Salem City Council have not gone through the experiences that other marginalized groups face, how can they possibly understand the pleas and plights

See Sanctuary on Page 22

The Rainbow Times The Freshest LGBT Newspaper in New England—Boston Based TheRainbowTimesMass.com editor@therainbowtimesmass.com sales@therainbowtimesmass.com Phone: 617.444.9618 Fax: 928.437.9618 Publisher Gricel M. Ocasio Editor-In-Chief Nicole Lashomb Assistant Editor Mike Givens National/Local Sales Rivendell Media Liz Johnson Lead Photographers Alex Mancini Steve Jewett Reporters John Paul Stapleton Christine Nicco Jenna Spinelle Chuck Colbert Al Gentile Chris Gilmore Keen News Service

Ad & Layout Design Prizm PR Webmaster Jarred Johnson Columnists/Guest* Lorelei Erisis Deja N. Greenlaw Paul P. Jesep Mike Givens Natalia Muñoz* Keegan O’Brien* Mike Yepes* Affiliations National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association NGLCC QSyndicate *Guest Freelancer

The Rainbow Times is published monthly by The Rainbow Times, LLC. TRT is affiliated with the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association, NLGJA, National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, NGLCC, and QSyndicate. The articles written by the writers, columnists, and correspondents solely express their opinion, and do not represent the endorsement or opinion of The Rainbow Times, LLC or its owners. Send letters to the editor with your name, address and phone number to: The Rainbow Times (address shown above), or e-mail any comment/s to the editor-in-chief at: editor@therainbowtimesmass.com. All submissions will be edited according to space constraints. The Rainbow Times, LLC reserves the right not to print any or all content or advertisements for any reason at all. TRT is not responsible for advertising content. To receive The Rainbow Times at your home via regular mail, or through electronic delivery, please visit its website. The whole content and graphics (photos, etc.) are the sole property of The Rainbow Times, LLC and they cannot be reproduced at all without TRT’s written consent.


April 6, 2017 - May 3, 2017

10th Year Anniversary • TheRainbowTimesMass.com • The Rainbow Times • 7


8 • The Rainbow Times • TheRainbowTimesMass.com • 10th Year Anniversary

April 6, 2017 - May 3, 2017

Pride 2017 Preview: Celebrating pride throughout New England, “Stronger Together” By: Michael Givens/TRT Assistant Editor

It’s 2017 and Pride season is upon us. The Rainbow Times recently reached out to Pride organizations across New England to learn about their Pride celebrations, grand marshals, and other highlights of their local festivities. Northampton Pride (www.nohopride.org) May 6, 2017 Q: Please state your name and title within your Pride organization. A: J.M. Sorrell, Spokesdyke Q: What’s this year’s theme? A: “Stronger Together”—collaboratively with Worcester and Boston Pride events. Q: Who will be your grand and honorary marshals? A: No marshals this year. Q: Do you have a current list of events? Can you explain why are they relevant in terms of your theme? What are you hoping to achieve at these events? A: We are in the process of finalizing our afternoon stage events. Here's the plan: Parade/march begins promptly at 12 p.m. in downtown Northampton. There will be many contingent groups—high schools, churches, sponsors, for and non-profit organizations, Dykes on Bikes, WHMP Radio, local and regional politicians, peace groups, drag queens and kings, musicians—to name a few. Thousands of people march, and hundreds line up along Main

PHOTO: MARILYN HUMPHRIES

Boston Pride parade in June, 2016.

Street to cheer on the marchers. The parade ends at the Three-County Fairgrounds where the stage events will begin. There are many vendors selling their wares and nu-

merous non-profit groups with information tables at the fairgrounds. The Mayor will deliver his annual Proclamation, and [an] emcee will move things along, and there

will be drag performers, singers, speakers, and comedy through 5 p.m.

See Prides 2017 on Page 9


10th Year Anniversary • TheRainbowTimesMass.com • The Rainbow Times • 9

April 6, 2017 - May 3, 2017

co-chair of the Fenway Institute from its inception in 2001; and John Michael Gray, half of the famous “Hat Sisters.”

Prides 2017 from page 8 Q: What are you excited about for 2017 Pride Season? A: It is the 36th annual Noho Pride March! We are excited to continue to beat our own records of attendance and participation each year … It's hard to believe we had just a few hundred marchers in the early 1980s. The “Stronger Together” theme is especially compelling. While we have gained many rights, especially in Massachusetts, we cannot afford to be complacent, and we know that our ally work with each other empowers all of us. When we rise together, we demonstrate our effective collaboration as we celebrate our multitude of identities. Q: Do you consider your Pride to be inclusive and to have members of the LGBTQ community of color on your board? How so? A: The Noho Pride Board solicits and welcomes diversity in all forms. We welcome all LGBTQIA people and allies as well. The composition of Board members and volunteer leaders and workers changes from year to year, and it greatly depends on availability and commitment each year. Boston Pride (www.bostonpride.org) June 2-11, 2017 Q: Please state your name and title within your Pride organization. A: Sylvain Bruni, President of Boston Pride. Q: What’s this year’s theme? A: This year’s theme is “Stronger To-

Northampton Pride Parade in 2016. PHOTO: NOHO PRIDE

gether.” The theme focuses on the current climate of political uncertainty and marginalization of LGBTQ people. The theme will be used for all Boston Pride events throughout the year, culminating with Boston Pride Week which will be held from June 2 to June 11. Q: Who will be your grand and honorary marshals? A: [The} Grand Marshal will be Kristen Porter, Founder of Kristen Porter Presents Dyke Night, who is celebrating 20 years of serving the LGBTQ community. The Honorary Marshals include Norman Hill, former President of [the] Gay Officers Action League New England; Dr. Judy Bradford,

Q: Do you have a current list of events? Can you explain why they are relevant in terms of your theme? What are you hoping to achieve at these events? A: Boston Pride events include: LatinX (April 20-23), Pride Guide Release Party (May 17), MA Youth Pride (May 20), Flag Raising at City Hall (June 2), Pride Day at Faneuil Hall Marketplace (June 3), Pride Night at Revolution (June 3), Pride Night at Fenway Park (June 9), Pride Parade (June 10), Back Bay and Jamaica Plain Block Parties (June 11). Full details on events can be found at https://goo.gl/jwg3Ce. These events are relative to the theme “Stronger Together” as they emphasize Boston Pride’s commitment to raising awareness of intersexuality, the overlapping of social identities, and how discrimination against one ultimately represents discrimination against all. We hope these events will further stress the importance of the diverse groups that comprise the LGBTQ community to stand together and fight for civil rights for all. Q: What are you excited about for 2017 Pride Season? A: This season we look forward to having new groups join us for the Parade and Festival to make this year’s Boston Pride week one of the biggest outpourings of celebration and activism for the LGBTQ community, showing everyone that we truly are “Stronger Together.”

Q: Do you consider your Pride to be inclusive and to have members of the LGBTQ community of color on your board? How so? A: Boston Pride is very inclusive and we ensure that our programming includes all members of the LGBTQ community, including through Youth Pride, Latinx Pride, and Black Pride. Pride Portland (www.prideportland.org) June 9-18, 2017 Q: Please state your name and title within your Pride organization. A: Victoria Kuhn and Michael Sweeney, Parade Team Co-Chairs Q: What’s this year’s theme? A: “Love is Love” (parade theme only, there is no uber Pride theme). Q: Who will be your grand and honorary marshals? A: We are nearly ready to share this info! Q: Do you have a current list of events? Can you explain why they are relevant in terms of your theme? What are you hoping to achieve at these events? A: June 11: Pride Portland! Stands With National Pride; June 13: Pride Portland! & Portland Paddle!; June 17: 2017 Pride Portland! Parade and Festival; and June 18: Tea Dance at Peaks Island. For more information, visit: https://goo.gl/NiM1Or. [T]here are so many frankly ... we are here

See Prides 2017 on Page 13


10 • The Rainbow Times • TheRainbowTimesMass.com • 10th Year Anniversary

April 6, 2017 - May 3, 2017

Pure Gold from P. 6 of My Soul” as a

kid. By the way, Aunt Pauline did impersonations of another legendary jazz musician, Cab Calloway, often without her teeth, with a “record” playing Minnie the Moocher. It was rather memorable. Her ankle-nipping dogs sang back up and walked with her as she pranced back and forth as if on stage. Surprisingly, I didn’t get frightened away from Cab and other jazz greats like Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holiday. Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater does an amazing version of “Rock of My Soul” (https://goo.gl/Jc4Qti). It encompasses the full company. Elvis Presley sang a modest, very painful version (https://goo.gl/DTHw2n) of it. Peter, Paul and Mary did a sweet rendition (https://goo.gl/Q7D9Pb) using this and other pieces to advance social justice through music. The dance from the Theaterhaus Stuttgard guys is pure gold. Their movements are fun, brilliant, and their energy from dance reflect hope and connection to a higher, all-inclusive power. There is joy in seeing and experiencing the soul and spirit in a tangible way through dance. Experience the joy in this music and dance and know you’re loved unconditionally by the Creator and there is a place waiting for you in a higher, better spiritual place. Live your truth. Try to love your neighbor. Make an effort to be an instrument for kindness, empathy, and compassion, especially to those who would not reciprocate, and the bosom of Abraham awaits. *Paul is a corporate chaplain, seminary trained priest, and lawyer in greater Albany, NY. He’s also author of “Lost Sense of Self & the Ethics Crisis.”


April 6, 2017 - May 3, 2017

10th Year Anniversary • TheRainbowTimesMass.com • The Rainbow Times • 11


12 • The Rainbow Times • TheRainbowTimesMass.com • 10th Year Anniversary

April 6, 2017 - May 3, 2017 advErtoriaL

Survivors of solitary confinement deliver Gentle Aesthetics Med Spa: Live Your Life –Beautifully 1,000 signed postcards to Gov. Baker sult,” she said. “VIP members can save thousands of dollars during the course of BOSTON—On Thursday, March 23, a group of survivors of solitary confinement, and their allies, some dressed in orange jump suits and shackled with ankle chains, walked from Boston City Hall to the State House to deliver 1,000 signed postcards to Governor Baker calling upon him to end the practice of long term solitary confinement in Massachusetts. The postcards included a clear call to the Governor to immediately shut down the Departmental Disciplinary Unit (DDU) at Walpole prison. Governor Baker can shut down the DDU with a simple change in regulations. Massachusetts is one of only two states in the country that holds an individual in solitary confinement for up to 10 years for a single offense. Su’ganni Tiuza, member of Black and Pink, a Boston-based national organization advocating for LGBTQ/HIV+ prisoners, who is currently incarcerated wrote to the organization about his experience in the DDU. He detailed the harm the DDU can cause and wrote, “DDU must be shut down because it turned flawed men into monsters. The DDU structure is a proven success in breaking spirits and demonizing souls!” Michael Cox, a survivor of solitary confinement who participated in the action, said, “The DDU is one part of a much larger problem of solitary confinement in Massachusetts. The Governor needs to take

the immediate action to shut down the DDU, and after that we need comprehensive legislative reforms that will abolish solitary confinement as we know it.” “The action was a powerful statement about the harms solitary confinement causes,” said Black & Pink Executive Director Rev. Jason Lydon. “Survivors of solitary confinement and allies took to the street and to the Governor’s office to demand action that would bring an end to the worst parts of solitary confinement in Massachusetts. The action was very successful in its aims to lift up the voices of survivors and disrupt the order of things in the Governor’s office." The action, which garnered 25 participants according to Lydon, is part of a statewide effort to bring attention to the harms solitary confinement causes people in Massachusetts. While the Massachusetts Department of Correction (DOC) claims that they do not utilize solitary confinement, the reality is that anywhere between 600 and 2,500 people are housed in 20-plus hour-a-day locked cells in prisons and jails across the Commonwealth. Exact numbers are impossible to find as sheriff’s departments and the DOC are not required to share data about these conditions of confinement. The walk from Boston City Hall to the

See Solitary Confinement page 19

BRAINTREE, Mass.—Gentle Aesthetics Med Spa is a result focused, full service Medical Spa where gentle approach and rejuvenating benefits of cutting edge technology produce a beautiful synergy of aesthetic treatment options for men and women, according to owner Helena Shumakin. “We wholeheartedly believe in consistency, we want to establish a long-term relationship with our clients and we want to offer our clients the option of affordable, on-going skin and body care because only then truly lasting, visible, sometimes lifechanging results can be achieved,” said Shumakin. With extensive experience in the industry and in a field that often costs clients several thousands of dollars a month, Shumakin prides herself on offering cost-effective treatments, for just a fraction of what other medical spas may charge. “We keep the prices affordable and our clients tend to stay with us for a long time so it works out wonderful for everyone,” Shumakin noted. “Each individual has unique physical characteristics, it takes time to study a client’s skin, and how it reacts to treatments or products and develop the most effective treatment plan. It would be very difficult to resolve any condition in one appointment. We want to prove with results that what we do rally does work; when clients see that, Gentle becomes part of their beauty maintenance regimen. Directed by a licensed MD, and a staff of certified and experienced aestheticians and nurses, a client-centered approach is key. In keeping with this philosophy, Gentle Aesthetics Medical Spa offers a VIP membership program for just $149/month which includes development of a beauty plan, created and maintained according to each client’s needs, Shumakin added. “Members can choose from a variety of treatments available to them plus on-going consultation with our aestheticians and nurses who are always available to con-

the year.” Of the many services offered, Shumakin said that the Body Countering and Permanent Fat reduction treatments are “very popular.” “Almost everyone has that little extra fat pocket or two that just won’t go away no matter how much we exercise and diet,” she said. “We have technology that can effectively remove this stubborn fat.” Other services include skin-rejuvenating treatments, such as dark spot removal and facial fillers. Shumakin explained that most clients opt in for those services as well. “We pride ourselves in the level or education we provide to each client before and during treatments so that they feel comfortable and confident that they are making the right choice,” she said. Recognizing the need of laser hair removal for transgender FTM clients, Shumakin said this is a popular option. “Laser Hair removal is a quick and effective treatment … it rarely has any side effects, no down time [and] amazing results can be achieved in 6 -8 sessions that are spaced 6 weeks apart,” she explained. “We understand that this treatment can truly be life changing for clients and we all feel grateful that we are able to provide a service that can enhance someone’s life.” According to Shumakin, most services are equally effective for men and women. Though hair loss treatments are more sought after by men, the cutting edge procedure offered by Gentle Aesthetics Med Spa works for both genders. “We all have similar concerns associated with signs of aging, acne scaring, unwanted hair or unwanted body fat,” she said. “I can think of only one treatment that is more popular in men, although women can be treated effectively as well—regeneration of hair loss due to male pattern baldness with PRP injections. It is a cutting edge procedure that requires no surgery, [is] very well tolerated by patients and has no downtime.” Shumakin said that the office offers up to 60-minute complementary consultations, depending on the areas of interest. “Consultation is performed in a private room where clients can freely discuss their concerns and ask any questions they would like,” she said. “We create a custom treatment plan and provide as much information as we possibly can, including pricing. Clients are welcome to take their treatment plans home; there is no pressure to purchase that day. We recommend taking it one step at a time especially for someone new to our clinic.” Customer experience is at the center of Gentle’s business model. From the aromatherapy diffusers throughout the clinic, complimentary hot and cold beverages, snacks, plush blankets in treatment rooms and WIFI accessibility to Netflix availability during longer procedures, this is not your typical med spa. “It is [of] utmost importance to us to create a customer experience that’s beyond expectations,” said Shumakin. “Our clients often comment on wonderful energy they feel when they come to us.

See Gentle on Page19


10th Year Anniversary • TheRainbowTimesMass.com • The Rainbow Times • 13

April 6, 2017 - May 3, 2017

munity. As our tag line indicates, we “Build Unity in Our Community.”

Prides 2017 from page 9 to celebrate the achievements of the LBGTQIA community while raising awareness of the work that remains to be done. We[‘re] about building strong connections among individuals and businesses to foster inclusivity, diversity and unity.

Q: What are you excited about for 2017 Pride Season? A: I am most excited about the growth of North Shore Pride in this our sixth year. We are excited that North Shore Pride is now viewed as a resource for our community. As an all-volunteer non profit our organization is comprised of board members and volunteers who see the need to advocate for the LGBTQ community and to enhance education for the greater community so that the North Shore embraces inclusion of the LGBTQ community.

Q: What are you excited about for 2017 Pride Season? A: We are excited to build on the successes of last year, to remember the past, and to have fun! Q: Do you consider your Pride to be inclusive and to have members of the LGBTQ community of color on your board? How so? A: Although this standard question was sent to all major New England Pride organizations, Pride Portland never sent an answer for it specifically. North Shore Pride (northshorepride.org) June 22-25, 2017 Q: Please state your name and title within your Pride organization. A: Hope Watt-Bucci, President, North Shore Pride Q: What’s this year’s theme? A: All Prides who belong to InterPride, the International Organizations of Prides … As a symbol of solidarity all of the Pride organizations are unified in their theme and have chosen, ‘Stronger Together’ for this year's theme.

North Shore Pride Parade 2016

Q: Who will be your grand and honorary marshals? A: We will have a survivor of the Pulse nightclub massacre as our grand marshal. We will also be honoring several community leaders on the North Shore. Q: Do you have a current list of events? Can you explain why are they relevant in terms of your theme? What are you hoping to achieve at these events? A: June 22, 2017: North Shore Pride InterFaith Celebration; June 23, 2017: TheRain-

PHOTO: NORTH SHORE PRIDE

bow Times 10-Year Anniversary Boat Cruise to Benefit North Shore Pride; June 24, 2017: North Shore Pride Parade; June 24, 2017: North Shore Pride Festival; June 24, 2017: North Shore Pride Youth After Party; June 24, 2017: North Shore Pride Adult After Party; and June 25, 2017: North Shore Pride Senior Celebration Dance. All of the events held by North Shore Pride are designed with a goal of education and advocacy on behalf of the LGBTQ com-

Q: Do you consider your Pride to be inclusive and to have members of the LGBTQ community of color on your board? How so? A: North Shore Pride has always maintained our focus on inclusion. We continue to invite board member applicants, as we have done over the last five years. North Shore Pride is proud to have a diverse board that is representative of persons who vary in gender identity, race, ethnicity, and background. Worcester Pride (worcesterpride.org) September 6-10, 2017 Q: Please state your name and title within your Pride organization. A: Peter Bacchiocchi, President

See Prides 2017 on page 20


14 • The Rainbow Times • TheRainbowTimesMass.com • 10th Year Anniversary

April 6, 2017 - May 3, 2017

Griffin to the Rescue: Activism in Trump’s America, and a potential new reality show PHOTO: KATHY GRIFFIN

By: Chris Azzopardi*/Special to TRT

O

f course Kathy Griffin’s manager asks if our conversation is being recorded—have you heard her talk? Luckily, the celeb-skewering, gayloving, Trump-hating comedienne’s filterless mouth moves at a meteoric pace, which is good news for anyone who wants to know her thoughts on basically everything: the practicality of celebrity activism, her idea for a My Life on the D-List spinoff and the surprising number of people she meets who say they’ve never encountered a gay person. I caught up with Griffin, who discussed all the above just days after being honored with the Vanguard Award by the San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus on March 12 for her ardent and unwavering role as an ally in the LGBT rights movement. Read on for her insight into what the hell we do—and what she's doing—now that Donald Trump is running this country. Q: I hear you gave an incredible speech at the 11th annual Crescendo Gala in San Francisco, where you were presented with the Vanguard Award. A: I did give an impassioned speech. You know, we’re all very, very engaged right now, although the LGBT community is obviously used to being engaged, and now my call to action is to ask the LGBT community to help engage folks that have never been engaged before. Know your local representatives. It’s all about the down-ballot. You know, stay galvanized. Learn from the Republicans. They stick together no matter what. We can’t be divided. We gotta all stay together. This is it. This is the big one.

Kathy Griffin

Q: You have two Emmys and a Grammy. How would you describe the way those industry honors feel compared to something like the Vanguard Award? A: This award feels special, because when I found out about the (SF Gay Men’s Chorus) Lavender Pen Tour, I really thought that was a cool thing, as someone who is a touring animal like myself. I did 80 cities last year, and I’m doing 50 cities this year on my Kathy Griffin: Celebrity Run-In Tour to support my book, and what’s so cool is, when I heard that the chorus, which, by the way, is the oldest gay men’s chorus in the world+they have a lot of street cred—were gonna purposefully go to very Trump red states, I was like, “OK, I gotta get on board.” Because I go to those places on a regular basis! I said this in my speech, but I see the Confederate flags on people’s garages when I’m driving gig to gig. What they’re doing is kind of like what I do. I think it’s so great, and I believe in many, many forms of activism, and it’s such a brilliant idea for the chorus to go, “We’re taking this on the road and we’re just literally gonna be a road tour of gay men singing,” so if anybody approaches them or has a problem with them, they’re just gonna look like assholes.

form you have in the Trump era? A: I think people that believe in any kind of nuanced thought, who can handle a thought, know that, yeah, a celebrity can actually provide a real service for a cause. Celebrities sort of apologize all the time, but we’re voting citizens like anybody else. I defend my right to speak about things as a celebrity or as an offensive comic or whatever you wanna call me. I’ve toured this country so many times, and I’ve also performed in Iraq and Afghanistan for the troops. I’ve performed in a prison. I’ve performed at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center. So, I kind of feel that’s what I bring to the table—that I’m really, really proud of. Every city has a different vibe. I can kind of tell in the first few minutes of the show what they’re gonna be into. But some audiences really want to hear a lot of Trump material, some wanna hear a lot about my mom, some wanna hear a lot about, you know, my new neighbors Kim Kardashian and Kanye West (laughs), which is hilarious to all parties. My material is definitely new, so if you’ve seen me five months ago, five years ago or 10 years ago, you’re definitely gonna see a new show. And even though I’m supporting the book, I’m not, like, just sitting there reading from the book. I’m doing all different stuff. Sometimes in my shows I’ll actually talk about the kind of activism that I’m up to, and I’ll try to make it funny. Like, I had a one-day show in Mexico, where, by the way, I spent the whole day apologizing to the whole country; I just walked around stage saying, “Lo siento (for) Señor Cheeto.” But I bought a bunch of Mexican postcards and those, for example, are fun

Q: What does it mean to you to be an activist and a celebrity with the kind of plat-

Read the rest of this story at: http://wp.me/p22M41-4Ld


10th Year Anniversary • TheRainbowTimesMass.com • The Rainbow Times • 15

April 6, 2017 - May 3, 2017

Existence of transgender people should not be up for public debate, scrutiny By: Deja Nicole Greenlaw*/TRT Columnist

A

TRANS OPINION

ctress and trans activist Laverne Cox recently released a statement (https://goo.gl/Pr6l5c) concerning her thoughts on why some people use restrooms as a means of denying transgender people their rights.. Evidently, these folks think that trans people don't really exist and that is why that they are making such a big fuss about the bathrooms. I think that Laverne hit the nail on the head with her comment. These folks do not believe in the existence of trans people even though the medical profession has said that we do exist. To say that we don't exist is to deny our existence. Why do they think like this and do they realize what harm that they are doing by denying our existence? I have been a trans activist since 2004. I have lobbied in federal buildings in Washington D.C. and in the state houses in Connecticut and Massachusetts. I have noticed the backlash against trans people fighting for rights. The backlash comes from bills introduced by extremist Christian groups.Interestingly enough, I never saw any other religions

pushing these bills, not Muslims, not Jews, not Wiccans, Druids, heathens, or Buddhists, etc., but only Christians. Now, I am not saying that all Christians are behind these bills as I personally know many Christians who totally support our rights, but rather it is the extremist Christians who are raising the fuss. Why are these folks raising such a big fuss? Is it because their particular God is a vengeful God with fire and brimstone or something of that matter? Why are they not accepting like other Christians? Are these extremist folks a fringe element? Why are they not accepting of the existence of trans people? I don't really know why they think like this. What I do know is that being a trans person is not easy. Before the medical profession acknowledged our existence I personally have been dismissed, labeled as crazy, delusional, narcissistic, selfish, and have endured slurs such as he-she, shim, girly man, funny boy, weirdo, pervert, sexual deviant, undesirable, and others that don't come to mind right now. It was tough enough to work through who I really am and to accept who I really am without these awful comments aimed directly at me. Ask other trans people about what they’ve been called and endured. It's no wonder that the suicide attempts of trans people is so high. No, it's not easy being green, as Kermit the Frog once said.

... IT'S TOUGH ENOUGH BEING A TRANS PERSON WITHOUT THE AWFUL NAME CALLING AND FORCING A CHILD TO ENDURE THIS IS NOTHING SHORT OF OUTRIGHT ABUSE. Nowadays, since the medical profession has acknowledged our existence it has gotten easier but there are groups of people who still think and believe that trans people have a disorder of some kind. Some of these folks even think that trans people can be cured of this “disorder.” These folks are not on the same wavelength as the rest of the world. I'm not sure I know how to get them on board with reality. What really gets to me is that these folks are now raising a big stink about trans youth in the schools (https://goo.gl/1mZDQA). As I mentioned before, it's tough enough being a trans person without the awful name calling and forcing a child to endure this is nothing short of outright abuse. I commend the school systems that support trans children. I also commend the parents of trans children because they accept their children as trans

and they back them and fight for their child's rights. Adolescence is a tough enough time for anyone, but to add this hurtful opposition and abuse towards them because they are trans is unspeakable. I don't know how to teach someone who denies the existence of trans people. If you don't understand it I don't know how you will understand it, except possibly to open up your hearts. To the extremist Christians who push these awful bills against trans people I ask them, “What would Jesus do?” Think about it, what would Jesus say about trans people? *Deja Nicole Greenlaw is a trans woman who has three grown children and is retired from 3M. She can be contacted at her email: dejavudeja@sbcglobal.net.

A look back at 100 columns: Triumphs, tragedies, silly jokes & serious advice! thing to do whenever I see my wonderful tions for trans people. In 2009, we were still large part to increased visibility, that same By: Lorelei Erisis*/TRT Columnist

S

PHOTO: DAVID MEEHAN

ASK A TRANS WOMAN

o this is my 100th column. For those of you playing the home game, that’s 100 “Ask A Trans Woman” columns that I’ve written for The Rainbow Times since I sat down in the summer of 2009 to write my very first column. In preparation for writing this, I went back and read my first few columns. A lot has changed since I wrote them. Even the name of the column has changed slightly. Originally it was “Ask A Transwoman” with “transwoman” being one word. Not too long after I started though, I was convinced that the two word phrase, “trans woman” was a better usage. The change made “trans” more of a descriptor, an addition to woman, than a particular, and separate, kind of woman. And I think this small, but important change is indicative of what I believe has been my strength as a writer, activist and advice columnist. It’s also why I have made it to 100 columns without too much objection to my continued publication in the paper (though there has been some. My favorite

THE RAINBOW TIMES DIVERSE............just like our team is OBJECTIVE..........someone has to be INCLUSIVE........no one is left behind .....That is HOW media should be.....

publisher in person is to ask if she’s gotten any interesting new hate mail about me). I have always tried to stay as flexible as possible—pen to change and new ideas— ready to jettison those ideas and beliefs that are no longer relevant or which I have become adequately convinced are simply not useful. I am always listening, constantly

a couple years away from even basic protections. As a trans woman in Massachusetts, and still in much of the country, I could be refused employment, or even fired from a job, simply for being trans. I could be denied housing, financial assistance, kicked off a bus, or out of a restaurant, a courthouse, or, yes, a restroom, just because of my gender

IN THE EIGHT YEARS I’VE BEEN WRITING THIS COLUMN, THE TRANS COMMUNITY AND OUR STRUGGLE FOR OUR BASIC HUMAN RIGHTS HAS GROWN IN STATURE AND VISIBILITY. reading, watching and learning as our trans and queer communities grow and evolve. There is always something new for me to learn, a fresh story to hear. I believe that nothing is static and the world around us is incredibly, delightfully complex. And therefore if I am to do my job, and continue to earn your trust, oh dear readers, I must be ready to change myself. I try to give the best advice I can, according to the best information and ideas available to me. And when that advice becomes no longer relevant or accurate, I must be prepared to know that, and to adjust accordingly. I am pleased to say I have often done just that. A lot more than just a word in the name of this column has changed since 2009. Marriage equality is now the law nationally, and will hopefully remain so. Here in Massachusetts, we now have full civil rights protec-

identity. There were no specific hate crime protections. I listened to our opponents, with absolutely zero sense of history or irony, seriously propose, “separate but equal” solutions to some of this. And the “trans panic defense” was still being used regularly as a way to excuse and exonerate the people who murder and beat us. In the eight years I’ve been writing this column, the trans community and our struggle for our basic human rights has grown in stature and visibility. We have come pretty far. And yet, there is still so far to go. As I write this in late March, there have already been eight trans women murdered (https://goo.gl/Vkjoap) in the United States in 2017; all trans women of color. Last year there were 27 transgender people killed in the United States alone (https://goo.gl/6M8us9). The highest number on record. So while things have gotten better for some of us, progress we owe in

visibility has also made it more dangerous for those of us most at risk. As much as things change, so much stays the same. Many of the struggles I described in my earliest columns remain just as relevant 100 columns later. In my fifth column, I wrote for the first time about the violence trans people face. Though I’ve written about the joys and triumphs of being trans; celebrated trans lives; discussed trans people in the media; defined and redefined terms of transition and categories of identity; answered all sorts of questions; and been positive whenever I could, I have never stopped writing about the violence. Quite beyond the social, cultural, and political changes, I’ve changed too. In 2009, I had still pretty recently begun my own transition. I was new and nervous, and quite frankly about 13 years old, hormonally speaking. I had all sorts of odd ideas about what I needed to do and how I needed to act to be “accepted” as a woman. I was often nervous and afraid and not nearly as selfconfident as I liked people to think I was. Thankfully, I managed to keep a lot of my more regrettable ideas out of the column. Somehow, in the act of trying to give the best advice and analysis I could to my audience, I have been able to offer wisdom I have not always had such an easy time following myself. Since then I’ve been through two major relationships, lived all over Massachusetts, traveled up and down the east coast, marched and spoken at innumerable protests, rallies, and parades, and had a good number of adventures. I’ve gotten mostly through to the more settled down side of second puberty. I won a pageant. Performed a Read the rest of this story at: http://wp.me/p22M41-4Lf


16 • The Rainbow Times • TheRainbowTimesMass.com • 10th Year Anniversary

April 6, 2017 - May 3, 2017


April 6, 2017 - May 3, 2017

10th Year Anniversary • TheRainbowTimesMass.com • The Rainbow Times • 17


18 • The Rainbow Times • TheRainbowTimesMass.com • 10th Year Anniversary

April 6, 2017 - May 3, 2017

The Frivolist: 10 ‘Conservative Value’ perverts & adulterers PHOTO: GAGE SKIDMORE

By: Mikey Rox*/Special to TRT

I

wrote a travel article recently for Out in San Antonio magazine about romantic LGBT-friendly and/or –owned hotels, called “6 hotels you should b@ng in before you die.” The title’s irreverent, sure, but its purpose, like all good article titles, is to draw readers’ interest—and, if I do say so myself, it’s more exciting than the kissy-face getaway ideas that saturate most travel editorial, because, let’s not kid ourselves, couples (gay and straight) aren’t booking romantic overnights for the free shampoo. But, the problem, when you’re a gay person, is that when you bring up anything remotely related to sex, you’re automatically branded a deviant. Now, I usually don’t respond to haters’ comments on my work—except that one time when another gay accused me of being a homophobe; as if—but I just couldn’t let Twitter user @twinmomma’s tweetresponse to the article go unanswered. Her suggestion that the LGBT community categorically has sex on the brain, and that’s why the world at large discriminates against us—and this coming from a lesbian herself—was not only homophobic but downright insulting. “really? ‘6 hotels you should b@ng in’? we wonder why people think LGBT people are only about sex,” she wrote. “Not journalism. You’re better than that.” I could go on and on about all the reasons she’s wrong, but that would take forever. Instead, I’d like to remind her of these (and there are plenty more) prominent, so-called Christians and conservatives that have been caught with their proverbial pants down, in many cases on company time and their constituents’ dime, who are better-suited targets for her ire. If nothing else, let this list serve as a reminder that double standards and hypocrisy still run rampant, among politicians, but also within our own community. #neverforget 1. Ed Schrock It’s the tale as old as time. No, not that one. Rather, the one where a Republican Congressman opposes gay-rights issue, like same-sex marriage and gays in the military, but then has to abandon his bid for a third term because a tape surfaces that incriminates him for soliciting sex from a male prostitute. No beauty in this story; just a beast. 2. David Drier Drier, a congressman from California, supported the Defense of Marriage Act and voted against hate-crime laws that would protect homosexuals as well as the repeal of “don’t ask, don’t tell.” He’s featured in the 2009 documentary Outrage for his alleged relationship with his male chief of staff. 3. Mark Foley A leading opponent of child pornography who also served as chairman of the House Caucus of Missing and Exploited Children, Foley resigned his House seat when the sexually explicit e-mails he sent to teen male congressional pages were uncovered. Daddy’s been naughty, y’all.

Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich speaking at the 2013 Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in National Harbor, Maryland.

4. David Vitter Vitter took over his House seat from former Congressman Robert Livingston following the latter’s own sex scandal, and then suggested that then-President Clinton follow suit and resign his own position in the wake of the Monica Lewinsky controversy. I can only image that he was at a loss for words when his name was discovered in infamous D.C. madam Deborah Jeane Palfrey’s little black book of clients. 5. Randall L. Tobias Deemed the “AIDS Czar” under George W. Bush, Deputy Secretary of State Tobias didn’t want U.S. funds providing support to countries that permitted prostitution. Noble stance. At least it was, until he also admitted to being a sex-paying client of Palfrey’s. 6. Mark Souder Souder stood proudly atop his soapbox as a devoted advocate of family values and abstinence. But he took his rightful place back in the gutter after an ethics investigation revealed an extramarital affair with a female staffer. 7. Chris Lee This idiot. A Congressman representing New York, Lee was caught sending shirtless pics to a woman on Craigslist and – get this—used his official Congressional email for all communications. He resigned hours after the story broke, apologizing to his family, staff, and blahblahblah. 8. Scott DesJarlais If DesJarlais isn’t the poster boy for husband material, I don’t know who is. He admitted under oath to at least six extramarital affairs, two of which were with a patient and a staff member while he was a physician. If that’s not enough, this jerk@ff made his wife have not one but two abortions while he ran on a pro-life platform. 9. Vance McAllister A married father of five in the streets ...

See Perverts on Page 19


10th Year Anniversary • TheRainbowTimesMass.com • The Rainbow Times • 19

April 6, 2017 - May 3, 2017

QPuzzle: Now “Thirty-mile Zone and More”

Gentle from page 12

Across 1 Like gay porn, to some 5 Sondheim's Sweeney 9 Place for a G-string 14 Carmela of The Sopranos 15 Switch ending 16 Prepare to get plucked 17 They poke around in leather 18 Take another tour 19 Rob of Melrose Place 20 Anchor of ABC's Good Morning America 23 "___ the Top" 24 Tropical hurricanes 28 Sucked up 31 Tales of the City author Armistead 32 Eat away at 35 Honest-to-goodness 36 Creator and managing editor of TMZ 40 Club for Sheehan 42 River of Gay Paree 43 Rita Mae Brown's ___, She Meowed 46 Oscar Wilde tragedy 50 Kisser of Scarlett in Vicky Cristina Barcelona 53 Othello and more 55 MSNBC host of the show that bears her name 58 "Stop!" to pirates 61 Pancake topping 62 Stringed instrument of Shakespeare's day 63 One that ought to be paddled

64 Where Boy Scouts sleep together 65 Peace Nobelist Wiesel 66 Humped antelope 67 Estimator's words 68 Result of a split in a religious body

Down 1 Rescue Me star Denis 2 Depp's cross-dressing role 3 Mr. Ed's owner 4 Handle on a streetcar, for Williams? 5 O-o-o-o-okla., once 6 It may get a licking 7 2008 flick about a priest and a boy 8 Speechless Disney dwarf 9 "Queen of Soul" Franklin 10 Home of the first openly gay Miss America contestant 11 Quick on the uptake 12 Photographer Corinne 13 House seat holders, e.g. 21 More up-to-date 22 Letters on a Johnny Mathis record 25 What you do at the other end 26 Vardalos of My Big Fat Greek Wedding 27 Where you can see Baldwin do Trump 29 Meet Me in St. Louis writer Brecher 30 Denials

33 Change color 34 David Hyde Pierce and peers 36 One to blow on 37 Hans Christian of fairy tales 38 Bambi's aunt 39 Scooby-Doo girl 40 Shakespeare's Puck, e.g. 41 Golden Girl McClanahan 44 Tickled pink 45 Mythical bird 47 Loads 48 Vehicle for a moonshot 49 Like Mapplethorpe pix 51 F. Holland Day work 52 Moray seeker 54 Short partner 56 Part of Bob Mizer's equipment 57 Lorre's detective 58 Crack pilot 59 Batman portrayer Kilmer 60 Writer Castillo

We are located in a medical building in a spacious, beautifully designed office; we hope to create atmosphere where clients feel relaxed and comfortable. I think the most important aspect is our amazing team who are knowledgeable, possess rapport and personality required in working with people in medical aesthetics environment.” Gentle’s non-invasive procedures using advanced techniques allow for most treatments to be completed in under an hour and flexible financing options can accommodate almost any budget. “We always do our best to offer comfortable, non-judgmental, welcoming environment so that you can enjoy a rewarding experience from your first moment at Gen-

10. Newt Gingrich File this under “Why Is This A$$hole Still Around?”: While leading the impeachment of then-President Clinton for his dalliances with Lewinsky, Gingrich admitted, at the time, to cheating on his second wife. It ultimately lead to his resignation from the House, but even today the devil’s minion is still manipulating the Republican Party from the inside.

FORTABLE, NON-JUDG-

*Mikey Rox is an award-winning journalist and LGBT lifestyle expert whose work has been published in more than 100 outlets across the world. He splits his time between homes in New York City and the Jersey Shore with his dog Jaxon. Connect with Mikey on Twitter @mikeyrox.

MENTAL, WELCOMING

Solitary Confinement from page 12

“WE ALWAYS DO OUR BEST TO OFFER COM-

ENVIRONMENT SO THAT YOU CAN ENJOY A REWARDING EXPERIENCE FROM YOUR 1ST MOMENT AT GENTLE.”

SOLUTION

Perverts from Page 18 caught kissing a married staffer in the sheets. OK, not exactly, but the smooch was caught on surveillance camera, which was enough to end his Congressional career.

—HELENA SHUMAKIN tle,” Shumakin said. For more information about Gentle Aesthetics Med Spa or to schedule your upcoming appointment, please visit gentleaestheticsmedspa.com or call 781843-0800. Gentle Aesthetics Med Spa is located at 150 Grossman Dr., #304 in Braintree, Mass. Check them out on on Facebook, YouTube and Google+ by searching Gentle Aesthetics Med Spa.

State House happened at the end of a performance of Mariposa and the Saint. The play is based on letters exchanged between Sara (Mariposa) Fonseca and Julia Steele Allen. Over the course of three years, the two women created the play as Mariposa wrote her letters from a solitary confinement cell and Julia wrote hers from outside prison walls. Advocates in Massachusetts brought this play to be seen by elected officials and community members with the hopes that viewers would be moved to take action. Along with the campaign to shut down the DDU, there are multiple bills sitting in the Judiciary and Public Safety Committees that would drastically change the conditions of confinement in solitary, force data collection and public distribution about who is affected by solitary, and create oversight of the conditions Massachusetts prisoners are subjected to. “The Governor can expect that we will continue to escalate our tactics until he takes some action,” Lydon said.


20 • The Rainbow Times • TheRainbowTimesMass.com • 10th Year Anniversary

April 6, 2017 - May 3, 2017

Votar, participar e informarse: Luche por sus derechos y los de otros, esa es la clave Por: Gricel M. Ocasio*/Publicadora de TRT

E

LATINX VOICES

sta columna en español en este periódico LGBTQ no siempre se refiere a la gente LGBTQ. ¿Por qué no? Porque unidos en nuestras luchas colectivas y armados con nuestras herramientas similares es que vamos a echar hacia adelante. Las luchas de todo grupo minoritario existen cuando un grupo mayoritario (de raza y sentir común) siente que su “ser” colectivo está siendo amenazado por la existencia de los grupos minoritarios. Muchos de estos miedos tienen una base en la ignorancia. Muchas de estas personas pueden aprender y hasta unirse a nuestra contienda por estas luchas sociales a las que nos enfrentamos. No podemos batallar solos en nuestras luchas. Hay formas más sencillas de hacerlo. Si usted tiene un familiar LGBTQ y usted es una mujer blanca, ambos se pueden unir en este ejemplo que les proveo. Unidos, un hombre gay o bisexual puede ayudar a las mujeres. Algunos ejemplos que puedo compartir con ustedes pueden ser el exigir (escribiéndole a sus senadores y representantes y yendo a votar) pago igualitario— que haya respeto legal y social—para las mujeres como ciudadanas de este país, sin las imposiciones e inequidades que les impone la sociedad. ¿Sabía usted que a las mujeres se les ultraja más, se les abusa más (violencia doméstica) y se les asesina más

Prides 2017 from Page 13 Q: What’s this year’s theme? A: “Stronger Together.” Q: Who will be your grand and honorary marshals? A: As our Parade is in September, we are still working on marshals[.] Q: Do you have a current list of events? Can you explain why are they relevant in terms of your theme? What are you hoping to achieve at these events? A: September 7, 2017: Pride Flag Raising at City Hall, 3 p.m. @ Worcester City Hall Plaza; September 7, 2017: Pride Flag Raising at Union Station, 4 p.m.; September 7,

Anúnciate con The Rainbow Times ¡Reserva tu anuncio en el New England Pride Guide 2017!

que a cualquier otro grupo minoritario a través del mundo? Haga de esta polémica una que también sea suya. De tal modo, cada uno de nosotros tiene un aliado con el que contar. De lo contrario, separados, no podrán obtener la igualdad, libertad, seguridad y protección que tanto busca. Lo que sucedió en Salem, con el voto a favor del Santuario de Paz por 7 de los 11 concejales fue inesperado. Contábamos con el voto de 6 concejales, pero al final el concejal Steve Dibble, antes opuesto completamente a la ordenanza, votó a favor de ella. Ahora, hay un segundo voto para poder ratificar y hacer la ordenanza la ley en Salem. Quiero que sepan que en la escuela Bentley, aunque hubo muchos hispanos e inmigrantes, no hubo suficientes. Las dueñas de este periódico, una servidora y mi la co-dueña, nos unimos a esta lucha para que se le protegiera a la comunidad inmigrante de Salem. Lo que quiero decir con esto es que pudo haber más hispanos en esa escuela apoyando a nuestros hermanos inmigrantes. Esa noche debió haber habido unas mil personas en esa escuela, si esto hubiera estado en la lista de sus prioridades esa noche. Sé que hay algunas personas que verdaderamente no pudieron ir. Pero, también sé que otros sí pudieron ir que no fueron. Eso no es solidaridad. La oposición está tratando de que la ordenanza sea algo por lo que los votantes voten en noviembre. De eso suceder, los resultados puede que no sean lo mismo. No permita que esto suceda. Envuélvase en su respec2017: Pride Lights the Burns Bridge, 7-8 p.m., Regatta Point Park; September 8, 2017: LGBTQI Pride Pageant 7-10 p.m. @ Fiddler’s Green; September 8, 2017: After Pageant Parties 10:30 p.m. - 1 a.m. @ Fiddler’s Green; September 9, 2017: Pride Parade 11 a.m. - 12p.m., Institute Park down Main Street to City Hall. All ages are welcome to participate in the Parade or watch and cheer from the sideline; Worcester Pride Festival, 12-5 p.m., The Common, behind City Hall; Pride Block Party 7 p.m. - 2 a.m., and many more prior to and after these dates. Information at: https://goo.gl/Gx0bqr or e-mail Worcester Pride at: worcesterpride@gmail.com Q: What are you excited about for 2017 Pride Season? A: We are excited about the theme of

LO QUE QUIERO DECIR CON ESTO ES QUE PUDO HABER MÁS HISPANOS EN ESA ESCUELA APOYANDO A NUESTROS HERMANOS INMIGRANTES. tiva comunidad, ayude a formar manifestaciones, exprese sus ideas, vote, e infórmese sobre el proceso de elección y sus derechos. En las pasadas elecciones de Salem, sólo el 12% de la población votó. Esto ha pasado en Springfield, Northampton, Holyoke y otras ciudades en Massachusetts y alrededor del país. El voto hispano brilla por su ausencia. Si usted desea igualdad, vote. Si desea que se le respete, vote. Si le gustaría que las oportunidades existentes cambiaran, vote. Si usted quisiera que otros miembros de su familia se sientan libres, vote. Si vive en Salem, sepa que estos tres concejales libres (Presidente Elaine Milo, Arthur Sargent, y Jerry Ryan) votaron en contra de la ordenanza. Haga su asi-

gnación. Recuerde sus nombres, vaya al web de Salem (https://goo.gl/tizG1o) y regístrese para votar. Infórmese de quienes son sus concejales en cualquier lugar donde viva. El proceso electoral es prácticamente el mismo dondequiera que resida. Recuerde a quién vota por sus derechos en específico y a quién no. Al momento de la verdad, ésta es la mejor forma de enviarle un mensaje directo y de solidaridad a aquellos a quienes votaron por lo que desea y piensa que es lo justo para todo ciudadano, residente e inmigrante—para todos aquellos que formamos parte de grupos marginados. De la misma forma, envíele un mensaje firme a aquellos a quienes olvidaron a sus constituyentes—a usted, a mí, a otros—en el momento en que votaron en contra de medidas y derechos que usted considera importantes y no negociables. No puedo hacer más hincapié sobre la importancia de votar, de unirse a grupos cívicos y apoyar con su presencia (no con su voz nada mas) a aquellos a quienes le necesitan (mujeres, niños, personas pertenecientes a otros grupos minoritarios, las personas discapacitadas, los judíos, los musulmanes, inclusive a los animales también, pues ellos necesitan protecciones al igual que los humanos). Sea un votante informado. No deje que le tomen el pelo. Nuevamente termino esta columna de una forma similar como terminé la otra al decirles: La información, la Read the rest of this story at: http://wp.me/p22M41-4Li

Stronger Together being shared by the New England regional Prides. The continual expansion of our Pride Week events with the addition of the qFlix Worcester LGBTQ Film Festival (https://goo.gl/7IXwXQ) is a great opportunity to showcase the excitement and growth of our Central Massachusetts community. Q: Do you consider your Pride to be inclusive and to have members of the LGBTQ community of color on your board? How so? A: We work hard to be an inclusive board with participation by all members of the community.” For more information about Pride events, check The Rainbow Times’ Yearly Pride Projects: the New England Pride Guide 2017 (https://goo.gl/PlD5yV) out from

A happy parade marcher at Boston Pride 2016 PHOTO: MARILYN HUMPHRIES

The Rainbow Times es el periódico de mayor audiencia LatinX en Boston y Nueva Inglaterra. ¡Tu anuncio aquí genera respuestas!

617-444-9618

June-September, 2017, which lists all information, entertainment, feature stories, upcoming events and headliners from some of the best Prides in New England and beyond; and the New England Pride Map 2017 (https://goo.gl/j4tDed) a pocket-size glossy piece out to all of New England on May 4, showcasing other business and organization events during Pride, parade routes and more. *Representatives from Hartford, Springfield, and Vermont Prides did not respond to requests for interviews.


April 6, 2017 - May 3, 2017

10th Year Anniversary • TheRainbowTimesMass.com • The Rainbow Times • 21


22 • The Rainbow Times • TheRainbowTimesMass.com • 10th Year Anniversary

April 6, 2017 - May 3, 2017

Sanctuary from Page 6 of the disenfranchised? We listened to that lack of empathy the night of the vote when we heard words like “these people,” “illegals," “aliens” “them” and more that outwardly expressed degradation to our fellow human immigrants—just like most people in that room—that merely want to be protected by the city they love and contribute to each day. On April 13 Salem City Hall will fill once again with residents, proponents, and surely a few opponents too, to witness the action taken by the councilors on the final vote for the Sanctuary for Peace Ordinance. My hope is that those who voted in opposition to it on March 29 will have had an opportunity to reflect on their initial vote, investigate the facts further and become emboldened to take a page from their colleague, Councilor Steve Dibble,

and ultimately do what is in the best interest of the city—all of it. In the last municipal election, only 12 percent of residents showed up to vote and look at the results. Issues like the Sanctuary for Peace Ordinance should be a no-brainer and yet we found ourselves in the middle of a school, in the middle of the night, in the middle of a battle that should not have had to be fought to begin with if we consider and value all of our residents. Progressives will ensure that is not the case again. This is what democracy looks like. We will continue to demonstrate that the will of the people is more powerful than the arrogance of strongly held beliefs originating from ignorance and bias. (#salemsanctuarynow #mapoli) Editor’s Note: Councilors who voted in support of the Ordinance, in no particular order, are: Councilor David Eppley, Councilor At-Large Thomas Furey, Councilor Beth Gerard, Councilor Josh Turiel, Councilor Heather Famico, Councilor Bob McCarthy and Councilor Steve Dibble. Councilors that voted in opposition are: Councilor At-Large and President Elaine Milo, Councilor At-Large Arthur Sargent, Councilor AtLarge Jerry Ryan and Councilor Stephen Lovely. *Nicole Lashomb is the Editor-in-Chief of The Rainbow Times. Nicole holds a Bachelor’s Degree from the Crane School of Music, SUNY Potsdam and an MBA from Marylhurst University. Nicole can be contacted at: editor@therainbowtimesmass.com.


April 6, 2017 - May 3, 2017

LGBTQ Youth from Page 5 “We’ve gotten some real support from legislators around homelessness,” Sterling Stowell said. “We’re focused on trying to address LGBTQ homelessness and get an accurate count of how many homeless or marginally housed people are in Massachusetts.” The Commission is planning to do another survey in May. Linn Torto, executive director of the Interagency Council on Housing and Homelessness (https://goo.gl/r4iJcI), said the Commission and its partners are working to understand whether or not they are missing parts of the LGBTQ population in the survey results and why that might be happening. “One of our goals is to do a better job of outreach. We’re concerned that we may be under-reporting,” Torto said. While knowledge of the numbers now is Grace Sterling Stowell better than it was a decade ago, the data is be appropriate to be housed with people still an estimate, and advocates say that will continue to be the case as long as stigmas who don’t share your identity.” To address some of these issues, the around homeless youth persist. “One of the barriers we’ve found is that Commission recommended the creation of not all young people who are homeless feel LGBTQ-specific shelters, group homes, and permanent safe being identified housing programs. and might not feel safe ORGANIZATIONS WORKING The group also rectalking to people who ommended the adare collecting data,” dition of new staff WITH THIS POPULATION Sterling Stowell said. who are specifically trained in isAddressing challenges FACE POLITICAL, FUNDING sues facing the LGBTQ youth in parcommunity, as well ticular face challenges CHALLENGES UNDER as ongoing training because the housing options available through TRUMP ADMINISTRATION. for anyone who works with homeshelters and other facilless youth. ities are not accommodating, which forces them into living situations that are often unstable and more Moving forward Making those recommendations happen, dangerous than living on the street. Problems also arise when staff at shelters though, is a different story. In addition to a and group homes are not trained in working lack of stable housing, LGBTQ youth also with LGBTQ youth, or when staff turnover deal with poverty, addiction, and other results in a knowledge gap, the Commis- challenges. “I see our programs and work being very sion found. Hannah Hussey, director of policy and re- vulnerable right now,” said Carl Sciortino, search for the Massachusetts Commission executive director of the Massachusetts on LGBTQ Youth (https://goo.gl/R9OJ4g), AIDS Action Committee of Massachusetts said that group has worked with the De- (www.aac.org). “The clients that we serve, partment Youth Services and the Depart- [who] are the most marginalized, are getment of Corrections to ensure that LGBTQ ting hit from all angles.” The Special Commission on Unaccomyouth, homeless or not, have positive experiences with government agencies they panied Homeless Youth was created under the administration of former Governor may interact with. “We have nondiscrimination require- Deval Patrick and continues under current ments but I’m not sure that even the most Governor Charlie Baker’s administration. well-meaning service providers know how At a time when organizations supporting to implement those practices,” Hussey said. marginalized groups are facing the threat “There are opportunities to look at services of funding cuts, the Commission is thankpeople are providing like applying for a ful for the support it has. “It’s not enough but it’s movement in the name change, which is [an] important step in being able to get an [identification] card right direction,” Sciortino said. “We are that reflects your identity and how you’re lucky to have leaders in Massachusetts who are aware and care about these issues.” living in the world.” The drive to support organizations like While not technically homeless, LGBTQ youth in unstable living situations are at BAGLY and the AAC has increased since greater risk for suicide and other health is- President Trump took office and is part of sues because they do not have access to a larger movement to protect the gains support services they need and are more made over the past decade. “Young people need us more than ever likely to be in a vulnerable mental state, acbefore,” Sterling Stowell said. “Young peocording to Sterling Stowell. “They’re not showing up in traditional ple in any community are the greatest asset systems if they aren’t technically home- but they’re on the front lines when there are less,” Sterling Stowell said. “There’s the funding cuts, service cuts. They face the issue of where to be housed, especially in brunt of it and are more likely to end up the transgender community, where it might homeless or marginally housed.”

10th Year Anniversary • TheRainbowTimesMass.com • The Rainbow Times • 23


24 • The Rainbow Times • TheRainbowTimesMass.com • 10th Year Anniversary

April 6, 2017 - May 3, 2017

The Rainbow Times' April 2017 Issue  

We bring you an exclusive report on LGBTQ Homeless Youth in Boston and adjacent towns, a Pride Preview of New England Pride Guides, LGBTQ So...

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you