Tulsa Family News, June 1999; Volume 6, Issue 6

Title

Tulsa Family News, June 1999; Volume 6, Issue 6

Subject

Politics, education, and social conversation toward Tulsa’s Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual communities.

Description

Tulsa Family News was a monthly newspaper; No. 1 issued December 1993-January 1994. The final issue available was published in September 0f 2001 (Volume 8, Issue 9).

The newspaper brings up important, evolving topics of marriage, Pride, TOHR, HIV/AIDs, events, advice, and politics all at the local and national level.

This document is available in searchable PDF attached. It is also available to be seen at the Dennis R. Neill Equality Center with permission.

Creator

Tulsa Family News

Source

https://history.okeq.org/collections/show/24

Publisher

Tom Neal

Date

June 1999

Contributor

James Christjohn
Jean-Claude de Flambeauchaud
Barry Hensley
J.P. Legrandbouche
Lamont Lindstrom
Esther Rothblum
Mary Schepers
Adam West

Rights

Tom Neal/Tulsa Family News

Relation

Tulsa Family News, May 1999; Volume 6, Issue 5

Format

Image
PDF
Online text

Language

English

Type

newspaper
periodical

Identifier

https://history.okeq.org/items/show/588

Coverage

Tulsa(Oklahoma)---newspaper
Tulsa---Oklahoma
Oklahoma---Tulsa
United States Oklahoma Tulsa
United States of America (50 states)

Text

American MedicaiAssociatiOn:
Gay TeensAt Higher Suicide Risk
National Organizations Fight Television War
WASHINGTON - Gay and lesbian youths are at high
risk for attempting suicide, according to anew study by
Dr. Robert Garofalo ofthe Children’s Hospital, Boston.
The study, published in April in the American Medical
Association’s Archives of Pediatric & Adolescent
Medicine, found that students who are Gay, lesbian,
bisexual or not sure of their sexual orientation are 3.41
times more likely to report a suicide attempL Data for
the study came from the Massachusetts 1995 Centers
forDiseaseControl(CDC)YouthRiskBehaviorSurvey,
which included questions about sexual orientation. The
study said that factors which may exacerbate this
problem, are "psychological stresses such as
marginalization, isolation, and rejections"
"These statistics underscore that anti-Gay prejudice
is a life-threatening problem confronting this country;’
said David M. Smith, Commtntieations Director of the
Human Rights Campaign (HRC0, the largest national
Lesbian and Gay political organization, with members
throughout the country.
"Suicides, and violence against Gay people will
continue as long as extreme fightwing groups continue
to dehumanize GayAmericans see Gay Teens;p.10
London Gay Pub Bombed
Hampshire Man Arrested
LONDON - Three people died and more than 70 were
injured, many seriously, in a nail bomb explosion at a
crowded Gay barin London’s Soho area. The device
wentoff at 6:37pmwithout any apparent warning in the
Admiral Duncan pub inOldCompton Street. It blew out
windows, sending glass anddebris flyinginto the street.
Hundreds ofpeoplewereevactuatedandeyewimesses
reported seeing injured bodies lying on the pavement.
Many suffered severe injuries and at least two people
had limbs blown off.
A 22-year-old engineer, David Copeland, from
Hampshire appeared in a west London court a week
later facing three counts of murder and three counts of
causing explosions with intent to endanger life in three
separate nail bomb attacks in London.
However, Copeland does not have any ties to the
Nazi groups Combat 18 and the White Wolves that had
been claiming responsibility for the bombings which
have killed three people and injured more than 100.
Police believe he had been working on his own.
They said that he wasnotresponsible for the hate mail
sent to ethnic community ldaders and minority groups
since the firstbomb was detonated in aBrixton street on
April 17, injuring 39 people. A second bomb, in the
midst of the Bengali community in Brick Lane, Fast
London, exploded a week later.
The attack on the Admiral Duncan, aimed at hurling
the Gay community which thrives in the streets around
Soho square, see Pub Bombing, p. 11
|1| DIRECTORY/LEI"I’ERS P. 2
EDITORIAL P. 3
mmm US & WORLD NEWS P. 4
~IEALTH NEWS P. 6
~ i~NTERTAINMENT P. 8
(~OMMUNITY CALENDAR P. 9
DO-IT-YOURSELF-DYKE P. 11
DYKE PSYCHE P. 12
"" GAY STUDIES P. 13
Serving Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual + Transgendered Tulsans, Our Families + Friends
Tulsa’s Largest Circulation Community PaperAvailable In More Than 75 City Locations
Gay Parade PermitApproved TulsaActivist Dies TULSA, Okla. (AP/T~N) - The parade will go on. After twice
delaying consideration of a permit for the Gay pride parade, the
City Council unanimously approved the permit May 20th.
Four citizens testified against granting the permit and three in
favor. Those opposing the permit made references to "unhealthy
lifestyles" and implied connections between the school shooting
in Littleton, Colorado and allowing the parade permit. However,
City Councilor Art Justiss had directed all speakers to limit their
remarks only to those concerning the parade and that anyremarks
about "lifestyles" would be ruled out of order.
Progressive Alliance co-chair and longtime environmental
activist, B.J. Medley spoke in support of the parade, citing
Barney Frank as one of her heroes. Not one but two Libertarian
party activists spoke in favor. One noted that if the parade were
ofsci-fi fans,thecontroversywouldnotbetakingplace. Libertarian
Scott Pearson noted he and his wife and child would march with
the parade because of their respect for freedom and tolerance for
those who are different.
West Tulsa City Councilor Darla Hall sniped that Gays will
have to answer to Godfor their "lifestyle" andhoped that they are
as prepared to met GOd as they are for their parade.
"We cannot single out a group and limit them in ways that we
do not limit other groups," Councilor Brady Pringle said. He said
the parade permit was not a moral issue, but a legal one. Pringle
noted that the average street dosing for parades was two hours
(this permit requested 2 1/2 hours). Councilors acknowledged
that they wererequired tobe content neutral and merely to assure
that all administrative standards had been met.
However, Pringle stated that the bad news for callers objecting
to granting the parade permit was that the city had been "too
consistent" in granting permits to any and all, and that now not to
grant the permit would dearly be based on content.
Pringle also stated that granting the permit did not constitute
"an endorsement ofthe Gay and Lesbian lifestyle" and suggested
that putting off granting the permit just called more attention to
a divisive issue. Pfingle also added that it served "to further a
cause that none of the councilors wish to advance."
Parade organizers had threatened to sue if the permit, which
allows the dosing of streets for theparade, was denied. Organizers
noted i~.~.a press release that the permit application was "lost"
twice by city staff over a several month period, see Parade, p.3
Arkansas PFLAG Mom
Praises Court Decision
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. - Carolyn Wagner, a PFLAG (Parents,
Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) Regional Director
and resident of Fayetteville, Arkansas praised last month’s U.S.
Supreme Court decision which says schools may be liable in
student-on-studentharassment. Wagnerhad successfully pressed
federal officials to recognize and intervene against sexual
harassment directed at Gay and Lesbian students.
The 5-4 ruling reversed a federal appeals court decision that
said Title IX, a federal law, never applies to student-on-student
harassment. Abuse ofGay and Lesbian students can often involve
sexual harassment, as well as other types of violence.
"This" landmark decision by the highest court in our land
reinforces that federally-funded schools must address and stop
student-on-student harassment that interferes with their access to
education," said Wagner. "This is a critical tool for all youth and
their parents to help secure a hostile-free learning environment
for all students," said Wagner, who with her husband, Bill, has
worked closely with PFLAG since 1996 to meet with, and to be
heard by, federal officials on the issue.
"We are relieved to hear that the Supreme Court is making it
crystal dear to schools that they have an obligation to protect all
of our children," PFLAG Executive Director Kirsten Kingdon
noted. The Supreme Court ruling that peer-on-peer sexual
harassment was included under Tide IX strengthened the main
tool currently available to Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and
Transgendered students. The Wagners helped secure a historic
agreement last year-between federal education officials and
Fayetteville Public Schools which says that the Arkansas school
district must take specific steps to handle various forms of sexual
harassment, including sexual harassment directed at Gay and
Lesbian students. The agreementcamein response to a complaint
brought by their son, Willi, who charged that the local school
system did not act after he was harassed repeatedly and beatenup
by a gang of students. The Lambda Legal Defense and Education
Fund represented him in the complaint. The decision last June
was the first time new Tide IX guidelines, issued in 1997, have
been applied to sexual harassment directed at Gay, Lesbian,
Bisexual and Transgendered students.
Phil Wiley Worked on Gay & HIV Issues
by Tom Neal, editor &publisher
TULSA - Phil’s gone but not forgotten. In a near
northside Black Baptist church, we gathered to
mourn, to praise, to laugh and to cry for the loss of
one of Tulsa’s most remarkable men. Survived by
his longtime companion of 28 years, Vernon L.
Jones, his morn and dad, Ester Mac Stanley Wiley,
Willard Robert Wiley, Sr., brothers, a sister, aunts,
uncles, cousins,nephews, niecesand step-daughter
Lenita, Phillip Amett Wiley’s passing was noted
bynoless thanfive pastors, the Reverends Maxwdl,
Davis, Bailey, LaCour and the Reverend Leslie
Penrose who gave the eulogy.
Phil was nearly 45. He was born June 16, 1954
and died at Saint John Hospital on May 16, 1999.
He’d been living with kidney disease, diabetes and
with being HIV positive. And while it was kidney
disease that took him ultimately, see Phil, p. 3
HIV/AIDS Events
Red Ribbon Run & Regional
Women + AIDS Conference
TULSA - Saturday, June 12, the second annual
Red Ribbon Run will open registration at 7am with
the mens run to start at 8am and the womens at
8:30am. The event includes a 5 kilometer run, race
walk and casual walk, all at LaFortune Park.
Registration will be held at the southeast shelter
with parking at the south parking lot. The event is
$12 pre-registered or $8 without a t-shirt,,and $15
and $10 that day.
This is aUSATFsanctioned eventandall proceeds
benefit InterfaithAIDS Ministries and the Regional.
AIDS Interfaith Network. All contributions are
welcome even from non-runners. For more
information, call 438-2437.
Then on Monday, June 14, the Second Regional
Conference on Women and AIDS will be held on
The University of Tulsa campus, in the Chapman
Activity Center, at 440 South Gary Avenue.
.The comprehensive, one-day program hopes to
raase awareness, promote discussion and provide
opportunities fornew directions inHIVprevention,
care and treatment for women.
"In the Arms of the Angels," a documentary
produced by the National AIDS Fund Americorps
Team Tulsa, will open the conference at 8:30 a.m.
with a look at women and AIDS. Patty Lather,
author of "Troubling the Angels," will give the
keynote address at 8:45 a.m.
In addition to a series of workshops, the
conference will feature a panel of HIV positive
women who will share their stories. Judith Billings
of the President’s Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS
will give the luncheon address. Sandra McDonald,
the founder of Outreach, Inc., will present the
dosing address on"WhatWe Can Do to Be a Force
for Change."
Tulsa Clubs & Restaurants
*Bamboo Lounge, 7204 E. Pine
*Boston Willy’s Diner, 1742 S. Boston
Burger Sisters Restaurant, 1545 S. Sheridan
*Empire Bar, 1516 S. Peoria
*Full Moon Cafe, 1525 E. 15th
*Gold Coast Coffee House, 3509 S. Peoria
*Jason’s Dell, 15th & Peoria
*Lola’s, 2630 E. 15th
*Polo Grill, 2038 Utica Square
*St. Michael’s Alley Restaurant, 3324-L E. 31st
*Silver Star Saloon, 1565 Sheridan
*Renegades/Rainbow Room, 1649 S. Main
*TNT’s, 2114 S. Memorial
*Tool Box, 1338 E. 3rd
832-1269
592-2143
835-1207
599-9512
583-6666
749-4511
599-7777
749-1563
744-4280
745-9998
834-4234
585-3405
660-0856
584-1308
Tulsa Businesses, Services, & Professionals
Advanced Wireless & PCS, Digital Cdlular 747-1508
*Affinity News, 8120 E. 21 610-8510
*Assoc. in Med. & Mental Health, 2325 S. Harvard 743-1000
Kent Balch & Associates, Health & Life Insurance 747-9506
*Barnes & Noble Booksellers, 8620 E. 71 250-5034
*Barnes & Noble Booksellers, 5231 E. 41 665-4580
Body Piercing by Nicole, 2722 E. 15 712-1122
*Borders Books & Music, 2740 E. 21 712-9955
*Borders Books &,Music, 8015 S. Yale 494-2665
Brookside Jewelry, 4649 S. Peoria 743-5272
*CD Warehouse, 3807c S. Peoria 746-0313
Cherry St. Psychotherapy, 1515 S. Lewis 581-0902, 743-4117
Community Cleaning, Kerby Baker 622-0700
Tim Danid, Attorney 352-9504, 800-742-9468
*Deco to Disco, 3212 E. 15th 749-3620
*Devena’s Gallery, 13 Brady 587-2611
Doghouse on Brookside, 3311 S. P,e,o,ria 744-5556
*Elite Books & Videos, 821 S. Sheridan 838-8503
*Ross Edward Salon 584-0337, 712-9379
*Floral Design Studio, 3404 S. Peoria 744-9595
Four Star.Import Automotive, 9906 E. 55th PI. 610-0880
Cathy Furlong, Ph.D., 1980 Utica Sq. Med. Ctr. 628-3709
Gay & Lesbian Affordable Daycare 808-8026
*Gloria Jean’s Gourmet Coffee, 1758 E. 21st 742-1460
Leanne M. Gross, Insurance & financial planning 459-9349
Mark T. Hamby, Attorney 744-7440
*Sandra J. Hill, MS, Psychotherapy, 2865 E. Skelly 745-1111
*International Tours 341-6866
Jacox Animal Clinic, 2732 E. 15th 712-2750
*Jared’s Antiques, 1602 E. 15th 582-3018
David Kanskey, Country Club Barbering 747-0236
The Keepers, Housekeeping & Gardening 582-8460
*Ken’s Flowers, 1635 E. 15 599-8070
Kelly Kirby, CPA, 4021 S. Harvard, #210 74%5466
*Living ArtSpace, 19E. Brady 585-1234
*Midtown Theater, 319 E. 3rd 584-3112
Mingo Valley Flowers, 9720c E. 31 663-5934
*Mohawk Music, 6157 E 51 Hace 664-2951
David A. Paddock, CPA, 4308 S. Peoria, Ste. 633 747-7672
Puppy Pause II, 1060 S. Mingo 838-7626
*Peace Of Mind Bookstore, 1401 E. 15 583-1090
The Pride Store, 1307 E. 38, 2nd floor 743-4297
Rainbowz on the River B+B, PUB 696, 74101 747-5932
Richard’s Carpet Cleaning 834-0617
Teri Schutt, Rex Realtors 834-7921,747-4746
*Scribner’s Bookstore, 1942 Utica Square 749-6301
Paul Tay, Car Salesman 260-7829
*Tickled Pink, 3340 S. Peoria 697-0017
*Tulsa Book Exchange, 3749 S. Peoria 742-2007
*Tulsa Comedy Club, 6906 S. Lewis 481-0558
*Venus Salon, 1247 S. Harvard 835-5563
Fred Welch,LCSW, Counseling 743-1733
*Whittier News Stand, 1 N. Lewis 592-0767
Tulsa Agencies, Churches, Schools & Universities
AIDS Walk Tulsa, PUB 4337, 74101 579-9593
*All Souls UnitarianChurch, 2952 S. Peoria 743-2363
Black & White, Inc. PUB 14001, Tulsa 74159 587-7314
Bless The Lord at All Times Christian Center, 2207 E. 6 583-7815
*B/IJGFr Alliance, Univ. of Tulsa Canterbury Ctr. 583-9780
*Chamber of Commerce Bldg., 616 S. Boston 585-1201
*Chapman Student Ctr., University of Tulsa, 5th H. & Florence
*Church ofthe RestorationUU, 1314N.Greenwood 587-1314
*Commtmity ofHopeUnited Methodist, 2545 S. Yale 747-6300
*Commtmity Unitarian-Universalist Congregation 749-0595
*Council Oak Men’s Chorale 585-COMC (2662)
*Delaware Playhouse, 1511 S. Delaware .712-1511
*Demoeratie Headquarters, 3930 E. 31 742-2457
Dignity/Integrity of Tulsa - Lesbian & Gay Catholics &
Episcopalians, PUB 701475, 74170-1475 355-3140
*Fellowship Congreg. Church, 2900 S. Harvard 747-7777
918.583.1248, fax: 583.4615, POB 4140, Tulsa, OK 74159
e-mail: TulsaNews@ earthlink.net
website: http://users.aol.com/TulsaNews/
Publisher + Editor:
Tom Neal
Writers + contributors:
James Christjohn, Jean-Claude de Flambeauchaud
Barry Hensley, J.-P. Legrandbouche, Lamont Lindstrom
Esther Rothblum, Mary Schepers, Adam West
Member of The Associated Press
issued on or before the 1st of each month, the entire contents of this
~uow,~balincadtiomn aaryenportobteectreedprboyduUcSedcoepityhreirgihntw19h9o8leboyr in part without
written permission from the publisher. Publication of a name or
photo does not indicate a person’s sexual orientation. Correspondence
is assumed to be for publication unless otherwise ~ted,_rnust
be signed & becomes the sole property of TJ.€~
Each reader is entitled to 4 copies of each edition at distribution
points. Additional copies are available by calling 583-1248.
¯
*Free SpiritWomen’s Center, call for location &info: 58%4669
¯ Friend For A Friend, PUB 52344, 74152 747-6827
¯ Friends in Unity Social Org., PUB 8542, 74101 582-0438 ¯
¯ *HIV ER Center, 4138 Chas. Page Blvd. 583-6611
*HIV Resource Consortium, 3507 E. Admiral 834-4194
¯ *Holland Hall School, 5666 E. 81st 481-1111
¯ HOPE, HIV Outreach, Prevention, Education 834-8378 ¯
¯ *House of the Holy Spirit Minstries, 3210e So. Norwood
Interfaith AIDS Ministries 438-2437, 800-284-2437
~ *MCC United, 1623 N. Maplewood 838-1715
¯ NAMES Project, 3507 E. Admiral Pl. 748-3111 ¯
NOW, Nat’l Org for Women, PUB 14068, 74159 365-5658
~ OK Spokes Club (bicycling), PUB 9165, 74157
: *Our House, 1114 S. Quaker 584-7960
¯ PFLAG, PUB 52800, 74152 749-4901 ¯
*Planned Parenthood, 1007 S. Peoria 587-7674
: Prime-Timers, P.O. BOX 52118, 74152
". *R.A.I.N., Regional AIDS Interfaith Network 749-4195
¯ Rainbow Business Guild, PUB 4106, 74159 665-5174
*Red Rock Mental Center, 1724 E. 8 584-2325
¯ O’RYAN, support group for 18-24 LGBT young adults
¯ O’RYAN, Jr. support group for 14-17 LGBT youth ¯
St. Aidan’s Episcopal Church, 4045 N. Cincinnati 425-7882
¯
St. Dunstan’s Episcopal, 5635 E. 71st 492-7140
¯ *St. Jerome’s Parish Church, 205 W. King 582-3088
*Tulsa Area United Way, 1430 S. Boulder 583-7171
¯ TNAAPP(Native American men), Indian Health Care 582-7225
: Tulsa County Health Department, 4616 E. 15 595-4105
: Confidential HIV Testing - by appt. on Thursdays only
¯ TulsaOkla. for Human Rights, c/o The PrideCenter 743-4297 ¯
T.U.L.S.A. Tulsa Uniform/Leather Seekers Assoc. 838-1222
¯ *Tulsa City Hall, Ground Floor Vestibule
". *Tulsa Community College Campuses
¯ *Tulsa Gay Commumty Center, 1307 E. 38, 74105 743-4297
~ *OSU-Tulsa (formerly UCT, formerly Rogers U. whoever...)
": BARTLESVILLE
: *Bartlesville Public Library, 600 S. Johnstone 918-337-5353
¯
OKLAHOMA CITY/NORMAN
¯ *Borders Books &Music, 3209NWExpressway 405-848-2667
: *Borders Books & Music, 300 Norman Center 405-573-4907
¯
TAHLEQUAH
¯ *Stonewall League, call for information: 918456-7900
: *Tahleq,mh Unitarian-UniversalistChurch 918-456-7900
¯ *Green Country AIDS Coalition, POB 1570 918-453-9360
NSU School of Optometry, 1001 N. Grand
¯ HIVtesting every other Tues. 5:30-8:30, call for dates
¯
EUREKA SPRINGS, ARKANSAS
: *Autumn Breeze Restaurant, Hwy. 23 501-253-7734
¯ *Jim & Brent’s Bistro, 173 S. Main 501-253-7457
¯ DeVito’s Restaurant, 5 Center St. 501-253-6807 ¯
*Emerald Rainbow, 45 &l/2 Spring St. 501-253-5445
¯ MCC of the Living Spring 501-253-9337
"_ Geek to Go!, PC Specialist, PUB 429 501-253-2776
¯ Old Jailhouse Lodging, 15 Montgomery 501-253-5332
." Positive Idea Marketing Plans 501-624-6646
: Sparky’s, Hwy. 62 East 501-253-6001
¯ *White Light, 1 Center St. 501-253-4074
¯ FAYETTEVILLE, ARKANSAS5
*Edna’s, 9 S. School Ave. 501-442-2845
: JOPLIN, MISSOURI
¯ *Spirit of Christ MCC, 2639 E. 32, Ste. U134 417-6234696
¯ * is where you can findTFN. Notall are Gay-owned butall are Gay-friendly.
¯ To: Dr. Dean P. VanTrease, President
.¯ Tulsa Community College
Original Letter Date: February 3, 1998
¯ A few months ago, I read your TCC
¯ Strategic Vision with great interest,
¯ particularly Section VII. This part states ¯
that TCC will reflect the pluralistic
¯ community they se.rveandthattheCollege
¯ will conduct workshops on diversity. I ¯
have some concerns about this based on
¯ negative experiences with other Tulsa
: institutions which have defined diversity
¯ narrowly, usually just as racial issues.
¯ . However, Lesbians and Gay men also are
¯ part of the diversity of our city, and in
¯ particular, I would suggest that TCC has
- greatly benefited from our cxmtribudon~
as students, staff and faculty. I hope that
¯ your workshops also will address issues
¯ of sexual orientation. ¯
¯ I am also concerned about TCC’s lack
of a comprehensive non-discrimination
¯ policy (on page 57 of your fall class
¯ schedule).While I suspect that in practice
TCCmostly does not discriminateagainst
¯ Lesbians, Gay men or Heterosexuals on
¯ the basis of sexualorientation, the lack of
: an explicitnon-discriminationpolicy puts
¯ Lesbians and Gay men at risk - never
¯ knowing whether or not we may be the
: target of discrimination and clearly
¯ knowing that there exists no recourse if ¯
such occurs. Heterosexuals haveonly very
¯ rarely been persecuted because of their
°¯ heterosexuality, and therefore, the issue
¯ weighs less heavily on them.
While federal and state laws do not
." mandate the inclusion of "sexual
¯ orientation" in non-discrimination ¯
¯ statements, these laws do not prevent
private or public institutions from adding
¯ thelanguage- federal law sets aminimum
¯ standard for non-discrimination, nora ¯
maximum. Public and private institutions
¯ likeThe Universities ofTexas, Michigan,
~ Wisconsin,California, as well as Harvard,
¯ Yale, Stanford have long had these
~ policies. You may have noted also that
; Rogers University (ed. ’s note: now OSU-
¯ Tulsa) recently adopted this language.
¯ I hope to hear from you that TCC will ¯
update its non-discrimination policy.
: Thank you. - Tom Neal, publisher/editor
In response to your inquiries concerning
: TCC’s Affirmative Action policy, we
would like to inform you that one of the
goals ofTCCas statedin theTCCStrategic
Vision is that "employees will accurately
reflect the pluralistic community they
serve." TCC is fully compliant with both
Federal and State guidelines with respect
to Affirmative Action. The College also
seeks to promote diversity among its
student body through many recruitment
programs, student organizations, and
several academic advisement/counseling
services. Thank you for your interest in
TCC. - Dean P. VanTrease, Ph.D.
Editor: Makes you wonder why it took 14
months and calls to two powerful state
senators to get even this lame response -
it’s not as though he bothered to answer
what he was asked. But the refusal to
answersuggests bias is aproblem atTCC.
Letters Policy
Tulsa Family News welcomes letters on issues
which we’ve covered or on issues you think
need to be considered. You may request that
your name be withheld but letters must be
signed & have phone numbers, or be hand
delivered. 200 wordletters are preferred. Letters
to other publications will be printed as is
appropriate.
by Tom Neal, editor &publisher
It doesn’t happen very often, but it’s certainly welcome to
hear that others agreed with Tulsa Family News’ assessment
of Chastity Bono’s lame performance at the Red Ribbon
Gala. Some of these other critics include include a number
of the event’s orgamzers. They were quick to let us know
that only a tiny amount of funds from the event went to Ms.
Bono. In fact, it appears that only a couple of hundred went
to pay her hotel bill. All other costs associated with her visit
are the responsibility ofevent co-sponsor, the Tulsa Chapter
ofPFLAGandtheir"anonymous donor" thoughyouprobably
won’t need three guesses to know who that is.
Unfortunately, PFLAG, Parents, Families and Friends of
Lesbians and Gays has been less forthcoming in correcung
its factual error crediting PFLAG volunteer, Tim Chilean as
the single person responsible for Tulsa’s Gay community
center. This is what they published in their newsletter, even
after they weremade aware of their error at the Red Ribbon
Gala: "It was his idea for [a] Community Center and his
dream is now a reality, a place for persons to come together
to talk, to meet, to dream. A Safe place for young people to
gather, a library, a store... " Of course, the editor of the
PFLAG newsletter is none other than Chilean. This
misattributionofcreditwas madewhilePFLAGgave Chilean
a Swan Award for community service.
As PFLAG was told, Chilean’s other work merits
recognition on its own without giving him all the credit for
shared efforts. Chilean was part of the team that created the
Center but it was not his dream, idea or work exclusively.
And he was voted out as TOHR president because of
questions about whether a community center under his
leadership would genuinely represent the broader
community’s interests or that of Tulsa’~Gay ruling class.
Come on, PFLAG, you’re credibility is on the line. Check
your facts - it’s really easy, get it right and say you’re sorry.
still HIV played a role because of the nearly total .ban on
organ transplants for people who are HIV positive.
The service was fairly long filled with music, and
testimonials from friends and family. Jessie Scott broke our
hearts with an exgmsite version of "God Is" backed by the
choir of Paradise Baptist Church. Regina Tyler and Sandra
McClellan sang with equal joy and sorrow. Testimonials
were given by his dear friend, Diane Zike of InterfaithAIDS
Ministries, Hilary Kitz of the Office of the Mayor of Tulsa,
Janice Nicklas of the Community Service Council, Midge
Elliott, longtime HIV/AIDS specialist, and Sharon Thoele
of Tulsa CARES and members of hisTamily.
ManY "Phil stories" were told. Janice Nicklas told of
going on wild car tides out to meet then Vice-president Dan
Quayle. Others told of hearing him speak about HIV and
AIDS. He would say,"I’m your worst nightmare: I’m Black.
I’m Gay. And I have AIDS. Now that that is out of the way,
let’s talk."
Phil devoted himself to making the world better. His
friends cannot have been surptised that even after death, his
activist spirit was at work. In its June 1st edition, The Tulsa
World featured a lengthy story on Phil Wiley, and the issues
involved in organ transplants for people who are HIV
positive. The story was frank mad fair t(~ Phit, to Vernort, to
Phil’s morn and dad. Phil would have liked it.
Editor’s note: this article is a personal reflection more
than a newstory. Phi! was a39iend and o.hero, a source of
encouragement and bdvice as has been Vernon Jones. My
life is richer for having know them and 1. was honored to
count Phil as afriend, and to continue to count Vernon as
one. - Tom Neal.
Tulsa Oklah~mans fox~ Human Rights, Inc. contrasted their
expe~tiencc:with that of Nelson’s Buffeteria, which received
a street closing inless than24hours withouteven completing
the multi-step application process.
The June 12 parade will be the first for the local Gay
community,, though several marches have been held. US
Congressman, the Honorable Barney Frank, Democratfrom
Massachusetts will serve as grand marshal and will speak at
a dinner the eveuing ofthe parade at tli~ Greenwood Cultural
Center and at a prayer breakfast at .7:30 am at Fellowship
Congregation Church, 29th and Harvard, Sunday, June 13.
:- Lastmonth, I wrote about
¯
¯ .The Tulsa WorldhighYlghtmg
some of the progress
: the newspaperhas madeand
¯ also some areas where
improvement is needed.
¯ And ironically, this last
¯ month, I’veheardfrom two
¯ unconnected individuals
about how Roxanna and
: Bob Lorton, the principal
¯ ownersofTheTulsaWorM,
¯ are not only not prejudiced ¯ but are even rather Gay-
" friendly. Indeed.
¯ I suppose the mani- ¯
.festation ofthis goodregard
¯ ~s The World’s blatantly
bigoted, specifically anti-
¯. Gaypolicies.Afterall, since
the paper is privately
¯
owned, those who create
." and enforce those preju-
¯ diced policies answer ¯
directly and only to the
¯ Lortons. And since those
¯ policies have received
¯ significant negative publicity
in the past years, their
¯ deliberate, continued exis-
¯ tence can only indicate
¯ some sort of ongoing
approval.
: Perhaps, another area that
Some ofmy best friends are jews.
Some ofmy best friends are black.
Some ofrny bestfriends are faggots.
Some ofmy bestfriends are dykes.
- Yeah, right.
¯ indicates theirwarmregard ¯
for us Gay people is the
¯ failure for more than five years of the University of "
¯ Tulsa, on whose board they sit and on which they have "
¯ significant influence as major fundraisers, to a~lopt a ¯
¯ non-discriminationpolicy pledging minimal fairness to ¯ Lesbians and Gay men, not to mention Bisexuals and "
¯ Transgendered individuals.
~ Let us not forget also their complicity in the hiring of
¯ the allegedly reformed homophobe, TU president, Bob ¯
¯ Lawless. Does anyone think it was accidental that of all "
~ the newspapers in the Southwest The Tulsa World was "
¯ the only one NOT to report on Lawless’ scandal at ¯
Texas Tech about his anti-Gay attitudes? Even the "
¯ wretched Daily Oklahoman covered that nasty history. "
¯ Let:sgetreal. TheTulsaWorldandtlfisfanfily, which ¯ ¯
¯ has become, by most people’s standards, enormously ¯
wealthy through the inflated profits which mainstream :
¯ newspapers have reaped over the years, have great "
¯ influence in this provincial litde city. ¯
Andthe reality is that these people, and the others like :
: them wh~make up what flatulently claim to be"Tulsa "
¯ society" do say that "some" of their "best friends" are "
¯ Gay - they hire us to do their flowers, decorate their ¯
: houses, paint their portraits, cater their parties, and plan ."
¯ their wedi:ling§,and girl! - dotheir hair ± all While they "
." call us faggots behi.nd our backs, and give money to "
people-like Jim Inhofe ,and Don Nickles and Steve ¯
,:. Largent-~politicianswho dlikelyputnsinconcentration. ;
: ,. camps, if they thought they could get away with it. :
¯ But let me be clear, I don’t really want to pickjust on ¯
¯ theLortons. They are hardly alone among the guilty, but ¯
they do occupy a position of singular responsibility. "
They really, really couldprovide theleadership for civil "
¯ rights that this town so desperately needs. And it would ¯
hardly imperil their fortune or daily print monopoly. ¯
: However, so they won’t feel alone as named among :
the guilty, let us single out in shame some others: "
¯ First and foremost, in the list for rank and unreformed ¯
hypocrisy is, of course, the National Conference for
¯
Community and Justice, which claims ~t cares about
¯ civil rights while it’s running as fast as it can in the "
: .opposite direction. The organization is tremendously ¯
¯ successfulinits Southern Hills Country Club fundraisers ,_
When it’s aft said and done,
you either are part of the
solution or you are the problem.
And the message to the Lortons,
to Mayor Susan Savage, Rabbi
Sherman, NCCJ’s Nancy Day,
to the so-tailed Democratic
leadership, is that you must take
as stand: either you support
fundamental human rights - even
for Gay people, or, if you choose
to do nothing, if you choose only
to cover your ass or to sit on it,
then you don’t even have as
much as integrity as the Klan.
They, no matter how repulsive,
at least are morafly consistent.
What they talk, they walk.
: (isn’tit convenient forNCCJ that Southern Hills finally
¯ decided a few years ago to let afew Jews, Catholics and
Blacks in?) and in making Tulsa’s elite feel like it is less
racist and bigoted than it really, really is but NCCJ has
steadfastly refused to include Lesbians and Gay men
within its work for justice despite repeated r.equests.
And at least m one
documented case, it’s deliberately
discriminated
against Tulsa’s Gay
community.
Some of the fault for this
lies at the feet of NCCA
leader Rabbi Charles
Sherman, who is openly
discussed in Tulsa’s tiny but
vocal Gay Jewish community
as "having aproblem
with us." So it should hardly
comeas a surprise thatNCCJ
gave its award for "human
rights promoter" of the year,
last year to, guess who? -
BobLorton! whosebusiness
engages in disctiminatory
practices.
I’ve come to the conclusion
that I’d rather deal with
groups like the Westside
Ministerial Alliance and the
Klu Klux Klan than groups
like the National Conference
for "Commtmity and Juslice"
because with the Klan
and the evangelical Biblebased
hate mongers, at least
there’s no doubt where you
stand. Better the evil on
which you can depend, than
those who talk and talk the
talk but who never walk it.
Who else should be called
out for our hall of shame?
How about Oklahoma’s Democrat Party? Is the best
thing that we can say about Oklahoma Democrats is that
Oklahoma Republicans are worse?
Now in fairness, the Tulsa County Party has been
welcoming of Lesbians and Gay men but how do you
explain the support for noted anti-Gay bigot, Mike Mass
as S tate Democratic party chair by Sally Frasier, a non-
Gay member of Oklahoma’s Lesbian and Gay political
action committee, the Cimarron Alliance? It suggests
that Ms. Frasier’s involvement in Cimarron’s may be
more about trying to control the direction ofGay dollars
into Democratic coffers rather thanany real commitment
to civil tights. She sure managed to get some big bucks
for Tulsa Mayor Susan Savage despite Savage’s
wretched track record on issues that concern Lesbian
andGayTulsans, like diversi ty tmiuing forTulsapolice,
or voluntarily tracking of hate crimes.
After all it’s important to remember that no matter
how many horrible things Oklahoma Republicans have
been saying about us for all these years, it’s been
Democratic majorities in both houses, combined with
not that long ago, Democratic governors, who’ve had
the votes and whohave failed to pass hate crime reform,
ci’~fl andfamilyrights protections forOkl~0maLesbiahs
and Gay men. Republicans make talk nasty about us;
Democrats just do us dirty.
. And isn’t interesting ~ at hov¢ the. pro-civil, rights
Democratic party planks adopted at local levels
mysteriously did not appear in state, level documents
until Gay party activists (credit on this, I’m told, goes to
Tim Chilean) noted, the omission?
When it’s all said and done, you either are part of the
solution or you are the problem. And the message to the
Lortons, to Mayor Susan Savage, Rabbi Sherman,
NCCJ’s Nancy Day, to the so-called Democratic
leadership, is that you must take as stand: either you
supportfundamentalhumanrights - evenforGaypeople,
or, if you choose to do nothing, if you ch,oose only to
cover your ass or to sit on it, then’you don t even have
as much as integrity as the Klan. They, no matter how
r~epulsive, at l~t are morally consistent. What they
talk, they walk. - Tom Neal, editor & publisher
Florida Adoption
Ban Challenged
MIAMI (AP) - The American Civil Liberties
Unionhas filed a class-action lawsuit to overturn
Florida’s law against Gay adoptions, the only
such statewide ban in the nation. TheACLU was
also joined by a child advocacy group in the
lawsuit filed Wednesday in Key WeSt.
"They trustGays and Lesbians to befoster care
parents but not adoptive parents," said Howard
Simon, executive directorof theACLUin Florida.
."What we want is to remove that blanket
prohibition.., so that they wouldbe evaluated-as
to their fitness and suitability to be adoptive
parents just like everybody else,’~ Simon said.
George Waas of state Attorney General Bob
Butterworth’s office declined to comment.
Florida is the only state with a law that bans
homosexuals from adopting children. Lastmonth,
New Hampshire repealed its ban on Gay
adoptions. At least two states - Arkansas and
Utah - have state agency rules preventing
adoption by Gay people.
The lead plaintiff in the Florida suit is Steve
Lofton, a 41-year-old registered nurse. He and
his partner of 15 years, also a registered nurse,
have raised three foster children ages 8 to 11
from birth. Two are HIV-positive; the third, born
positive, no longer tests positive for the virus that
causes AIDS. The family recently moved to
Oregon°
NY State Gay Senator
Makes Issues Personal
ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - Somewhat sheepishly,
state Sen. Tom Duane rose to his feet in the
Senate one day this month and apologized to a
colleague fbr not having complained about a
provision in his bill sooner.
The measure would provide for state.
reimbursement for counsding to the spouse,
child or stepchild of a crime victim. Duane asked
the sponsor, Sen. Michael Nozzolio of Seneca
County, if domestic partners - the unmarried
partners of heterosexuals and homosexuals alike
- were eligible under the legislation. They are
not, Nozzolio said. If Duane’s own domestic
partner is murdered, would Duane be’eligible for
counseling? No was the eventual answer from
Nozzolio.
Duane pleaded with Nozzolio to amend the
bill. Nozzolio refused. Duane conceded that he
should have noticed the omission earlier, arid
was not springing"some kind ofa surprise attack"
on Nozzolio by only now complaining about it
on the floor of the Senate. "You might find this
hard to believe," Duane said. "I have been Gay
for longer than I have not been Gay, but it’s not
the first thing I think about in the morning."
Still, Duane’s sexual orientation is an
undeniable aspect of his personality, never far
from the surface in both how he goes about his
job as legislator and how others regard him. That
and the fact he is infected with HIV, the virus
which causes AIDS. Duane and the state Senate,
dominated as it is by conservative Republicans
from suburban and upstate New York, would
seemlike an awkward fit. Butnearly five months
into his first term in Albany, the Democrat from
Manhattan says he has been treated well by his
new colleagues and he believes his presence has
had an effectinnndgingforward abill toughening
penalties for hate crimes and another providing
more civil rights for Gays and Lesbians.
"Neither all of the other senators nor I knew
exactly what to expect," Duane, 44, said. "But I
think that time together and familiarity has in
some ways lessened the mystery about each
other." Twice so far on the floor of the Senate
when hate-crime related bills were being
discussed, Duane has spoken at length about the
three times he was assaulted by people spouting
anti-Gay epithets. "I’m not even going to talk
about all the times I’ve been verbally harassed,"
he said each time.
] Matt Foreman of the Gay advocacy group
,’ Empire State Pride Agenda said having a sitting
¯ senator offering suchpowerful testimony cannot
i help but have an effect on softening attitudes,
¯ even in the Senate, which Foreman derides as
¯ "one of the last bastions ofignorance andbigotry
gamst Gay people. It is a whole new dynmmc
i for us to have up here a senator who can go peer-
. to-peer and talk to people about our issues,"
¯ Foreman said.
¯ Senators and spectators alike listened with
¯ "rapt attention" when Duane talked about Gay-
: bashing incidents he was involved in, according
¯ to Foreman. "It becomes real," Foreman said.
¯ "HIV issues become real, and living with AIDS
¯ becomes real when a colleague is facing those
: issues himself. My sense is people thought he
¯" was going to be a radical... If anything, Tom can
¯ be one of the most charming and funny people in
the w0rld."
Duane said he may be impassioned, but he is
still not all that comfortable discussing his
homosexuality or HIV-positive status. That is
despite spending seven years on the New York
City Council as an advocate for Gays and people
living with AIDS before being elected to the
Senate last November. "When I decide to raise
the issues, I have to take a somewhat deeper
breath than I do when I am going to speak on
other issues because it is so personal and it has
come with along-term personal struggle with the
whole issue of being out," Duane said. "It still
doesn’ t come naturally," he added. "I have to put
together my inner forces to be able to get up and
speak on Lesbian-Gay issues and AIDS issues
with the self-assurance and spirit that I think it
needs to move my colleagues."
One issue where Duane has had no effect is on
changing the state Senate’ s policy ofnotextending
benefits to the domesticphrtners ofits employees.
The Democrat-controlled state Assembly does
so, and so does the executive branch of
government under orders of Republican Gov.
George Pataki. But the Senate does not. Its
majority leader, Joseph Bruno, once referred to
homosexuality as an "abnormal lifestyle." "It
sends a signal that discrimination is tolerated,"
Duane said of the policy. "It provides a
disincentive to people not to be more out front..
¯ It is blatant discrimination." Family benefits are
designed for married couples and their children
and there are no plans to change the policy,
Bruno spokesman John McArdle said.
Methodist Anti-Gay
Witchhunt Continues
DENVER (AP) - A Methodist layman has
accused a Denver-areabishop ofbreaking church
law by al.lowing a minister to officiate at samesex
tmions. Mel Brown of Johnstown filed the
complaint against Bishop Mary Ann Swenson
with the denomination’s College of Bishops.
The charge centers on the activities of the Rev.
Toni Cook, pastor of St. Paul’s United Methodist
Church on Capitol Hill, who acknowledges she
has officiated at same-sex unions for"committed,
¯ lo.v’.mg couples." Brown said church law bars
¯ mlmsters from officiating at same-sex unions.
¯ He claimed Ms. Swenson is guilty "of
¯ disobedience to the order and discipline." The
¯ church’s Book of Discipline, says bishops are to
¯ "teach and uphold the theological traditions of
¯ the United Methodist Church." The church’s
¯ highest court, the Judicial Council, ruled earlier
¯ this year a person could face church charges for
¯ officiating at same-sex unions. Any church court
: proceeding would be lengthy. If Ms. Swensonis
¯ found guilty of disobeying church law, she may
: be removed from her position.
: Ms. Swenson said she has felt "Mel Brown’s
: rage" for several years. The filing of charges is
." just another step in his efforts to force-her
¯ resiguadon, she claimed. Ms. Swenson said she
: is "not aware of actualities or specifics" about
¯ Ms. Cook’s ministry, but added that "there’s
¯ been no criticism of her work by the
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A Voicefor
Freedom & Tolerance
superintendent or her congregation." "It’s not my job to
be a policeman," Ms. Swenson said.
Ms. Cooksaid sheis "dumbfounded"about the charges.
"I believe my job as pastor is to offer the same pastoral
support, sacraments and rituals to all members and that
includes Gays, Lesbians, Bisexuals and Transgendered
people.Wedon’thave second-class citizens at St. Paul’s,"
she said.
St. Paul’s declared several years ago thatitis open to all
people, .includingGays. Brown’s chargeswereforwarded
to Bishop William Dew of Phoenix, who said that no
bishop has ever faced charges for allowing a minister to
officiate at same-sex unions. In the past several years, a
minister in Chicago and one in Nebraska were tried in
church courts forperforming such unions. One was found
guilty andonewas foundinnocent. "To chargea supervisor
(bishop) after the fact may not go directly to the issue (of
same-sex union)," Dew said.
Church law requires Dew to ask the parties to meet to
resolve their differences. If that fails, a three-member
committee is named which will meetwith the two parties.
If that committee decides the charges are grave, an
investigative committee will meet to decide whether a
church trial is warranted. "In all my 63 years I’ve never
seen a bishop on trial," said Dew. "A person should be
absolutely clear and serious about charges against a
bishop." Brown, a semi-retired farm supply dealer, said
he filed the charges against Ms. Swenson rather than Ms.
Cook"to getmorenational attention. Mary AnnSwensun
should resign."
Hepreviously calledforherresignationin 1996 because
she, along with 14 other Methodist bishops, publicly
supported the right ofpracticingGays to be ordained. The
15, who made the dissent statement during the church’s
national convention in Denver, said they would follow
church law that bans such ordinations. Over the years
Brown has written letters to Ms. Swensbn to complain
about her salary, how she spends vacation time and how
she votes on church issues.
Massachusetts Gay
Bashers Sentenced
NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (AP) - Three men have been
sentenced to jail for a Main Street attack on a Gay man a
year ago. Jameson Conz, 19, of Northampton; Zachary
Keefe, 20, ofNorthampton, andJoshuaPhelps, 22,pleaded
guilty in Hampshire Superior Court to assault and battery
with intent to intimidate a person because of his sexual
orientation. Conz, who had gone to high school with the
19-year-old victim, and Keefe were ordered to serve 18
months of a 21/2-year jail sentence. Phelps was ordered
to serve six months of a 2 1/2-year sentence. After
shouting anti-Gay slurs, the three beat and kicked the
victim on May 24, 1998, according to prosecutor Renee
Steese. "The incident was an unprovoked act of violence
against an individual simply walking back to his truck
after work," Steese told thejudge. "Ithad a very traumatic
effect on the victim."
Oregon House Considers
Anti-Gay Marriage Bill
SALEM, Ore. (AP) - A key state lawmaker has warned
that a court decision giving Gay public employees the
same benefits as married workers could dear the way for
same-sex marriages in Oregon.
Rep. Kevin Mannix, R-Salem, has proposed an
amendment to the state constitution to define marriage as
only the union between amanand a woman. The measure
would also bar the courts from requiring that unmarried
partners be entitled to domesticbenefits. Mannix said that
the measure is aimed an Oregon Court of Appeals ruling
last year that banned discrimination against homosexuals
in the workplace and required governments to provide
insurance benefits to same-sex domestic partners of
government employees.
ThedecisionwasbasedonaPorflandnursingprofessor’ s
case against Oregon Health Sciences University, where
she has worked for 12 years. Christine Tanner, a mother
Of two who in a long-term.relationship with another
woman, told the House Judiciary-Civil Committee that
Mannix’s proposal would erase that ruling. "Please,
pleasedonotsendamessagetomychildren that, somehow,
their family is less-than equal in the eyes of the state," she
said.
¯
Jean Harris of Basic Rights Oregon, a group that fights
¯ anti-Gay measures, saidtheproposal was a thinly disguised
’ ¯ attempt at discriminating against homosexuals. "We
: already can’t get married - so why push this out?" she
: asked. "It’s about keeping us from having benefits."
¯ Mannix said the appeals court ruling leaves room for
: others who are barred from marriage - like first cousins
¯ - to also ask for rights that have been reserved for
¯ heterosexual married couples. Hecalled the appeals court
¯ ruling "perverse reasoning," and said most Oregonians
-" would support a constitutional amendment, which the
: courts could not change. "What we are doing is taking a
: position of neutrality," he .said. "But we are drawing a
¯ firmlineinprotecting a traditional family unit: marriage."
Others said barring same-sex marriages would protect
: children from being raised outside of the "secure
¯ environment ofaheterosexual umon. Weare not taking
¯ the institution of marriage as seriously as we ought to,"
: said Jerry Propst, a Baptist minister from Hillsboro. "The
¯ institution of marriage is a sacred trust."
." Dave Fidanque, director of Oregon American Civil
¯ Liberties Union, argued that the proposal would ¯
discriminate against Gay Oregouians - and that it has
: taken years to remove other discriminatory provisions
¯ from the state constitution. ’q’his proposal would permit ¯
discrimination against a class of citizens in our state,"he
: said. "It would be as much of a mistake as past
¯ discrimination." The measure is HJR29.
Bank Closeto Opening
¯ PENSACOLA, Fla. (AP) - G&L Bank has entered the ¯
final phase of the federal approval process and is looking
~ toward a possible fall opening as the nation’s first bank
: designed primarily for homosexual customers.
¯ Thebank, whoseinitials stand forGay and Lesbian, has
: received a "deemed complete" letter on its application
." with the Office ofThrift Supervision, saidG&Lpresident
: St_even Dunlap. That means the federal agency has 60
¯ days to approve or deny the bank’s request to operate.
." "We have no reason to believe we won’t get an up sign,"
¯" said bank president G. Kay Griffith. G&Lofficers earlier
¯ had hoped for a spring opening, but the approval process
: has taken longer than anticipated.
: In addition to focusing on homosexuals, G&L would
¯" beamongoulyafewbanksoperatingnationallyprimarily
¯ on the Internet and the first to offer consumer loans via e-
: commerce, saidGriffith, aformer NationsBankexecutive
: and bank consultant. The downtown bank plans to hold
¯ an open house over the Memorial Day weekend, when
: thousands of Gays and Lesbians traditionally flock to
i Pensacola area beaches. A similar open house last year
attracted 1,400 visitors from 21 states, Dunlap said. G&L
¯ also is getting interest from Blacks and unmarried
heterosexual couples who are looking for"a bank which
: doesn’tdiscriminate agaiustanybody,"Dunlap said. Many
¯ .banks refuse to consider dual incomes when unmarried
~ .couples apply for loans or mortgages, he said.
¯ Black Gay Church Thrives
: CHICAGO (AP) - For Black homosexuals, many .of
~ whom say they feel misunderstood by other Blacks as
¯ well as the white Gay commtmity, one church offers a
¯ haven where they can worship without fear of
discrimination.
: Men with men, women with women, their children and
! parents are all welcome at the Church of the Open Door,
say its founders, the Rev. Alma Faith Crawford and her
. : partner, the Rev. Karen Hurt. The two pastors started the
church, whichis affiliated with the Unitarian Universalist
¯ Association, three years ago as a Bible study group in
their apartment.
Since then, the congregation has grown to 275 and has
: settled into its own red brick house of worship in the
: Chicago Lawn neighborhood on the city’s southwest
: side. At a time when many faiths are divided over the
inclusion of Gays and Lesbians and the ramifications of
¯ same-sex marriages, Open Door is the only place of
: worship in Chicago founded specifically for those who
i are both Gay and Black.
Members say they joined Open Door after feeling
:¯ unwelcome in other churches. "They will takemymoney -
but they won’t let me into heaven," said Lloyd Kelly, 38.
¯
Kelly said he eventually grew fired of pastors and priests
¯ : elsewhere saying that homosexuals will bum in hell.
¯ Among the Open Door congregation are also members
: who previously attended churches that were open to Gays
and Lesbians but were predominantly white and not
always culturally sensitive. "It’s not that the Gay white
church letme down; the difference is that here my culture
as an African-American is celebrated," said Elandria
Henderson, 50, who drives across the city to attend
Sunday services at Open Door. The church’s two flagsa
rainbow banner of Gay pride and the red, Black and
green African-American heritage- are symbolic of most
of its congregation.
But Open Door’s founders say they also want others in
the diverse working class neighborhood who have felt the
sting of discrimination to feel welcome. "We want to
cross those bridges that divide us as African-Americans,
as immigrants, as peopledue to class, education or sexual
orientation," Crawford said.
To that end, the church offers English as a second
language and computer training in its annex. Church
leaders also have worked with neighbors to rid the area of
drug dealers and to start a block club. It is the church’s
commuuity involvement, police say, that has likely
prevented any protests over what many might consider a
controversial congregation. "They want to be good
neighbors,"said police Sgt. John Andrews. "Sofar they’re
been proactive and productive."
Virginia "Sodomy"
Law Challenged
ROANOKE, Va. (AP) - A Gay activist invited four of
Roanoke’s top law enforcement officials to join him in a
private act of sodomy, arguing if they don’t prosecutehim
for soliciting sex, then they cannot prosecute 18 men
charged with allegedly seeking Gay sex in a city park.
Franklin Kameny, 74, a longtime Washington, D.C.,
Gay activist sent letters last week to Circuit Judges
Richard Pattisall and Robert Doherty, Assistant
Commonwealth’sAttorney Alice Ekirchand Police Chief
Arias "Joe" Gaskins.
The goal of the letters, he said in a telephone interview,
is to bring attention to "these antiquated sodomy laws in
Virginia... which malc.e felons of virtually every adult
member of the populous of the state." "It raises the
question that if they’ve been solicited and they don’t
respond, how can they charge otherpeople for solicitin~?"
he said. The four letter recipients have either ruled in’he
park sex cases or been involved in prosecuting the men.
Ms. Ekirch said she received the letter, which she
believes does violate the law against solicitation. She
declined to comment further, citing the ongoing cases.
The other recipients also have declined to comment.
Kameny was notprosecuted afterhe wentonan Alexandria
Gay issues radio show in December and solicited the
entire state of Virginia for sodomy.
For years, Roanoke police have brought misdemeanor
charges against "cruisers" who sought anonymous Gay
sex in the park and other public places. Police said
complaints from citizens about blatant sexual activity in
WasenaPark led them to seek felony sodomy indictments
against the men in the latest cases.
In his letter, Kameny invited the f.our officials "to
engage withmein an act or acts of sodbmy of your choice
and as defined by Section 18.2-361 of the Virginia Code,
in some indisputably private place in the state ofVirginia,
at a time of our mutual convenience.’"
Kameny wrote that the letter would be "published and
publicized, with intent to embarrass each of you
individually and by name, and to bring you into public
contempt and ridicule nationally, as well as to make a
contemptible laughingstock of your benighted, barbaric,
backward state."
Theletter is similar to one Kameny wrote to Washington
officials in 1972 as part of a three-decade movement to
have the district’s sodomy law repealed. It finally was
repealed in 1993, with Kameny writing the statute.
Kameny said he "would be absolutely delighted" to be
arrested because it would afford him the opportunity to
make a media circus of a probable extradition hearing in
Washington, and each subsequent hearing in the case.
In open court, he said, he would solicit the judge for
sex, forcing him to disqualify himsdf from the case, and
continue soliciting everyjudge broughtin to hear the case
until no state judges remained eligible.
Kameny also has posted e-mails on the Internet urging
others to solicit law enforcement personnel in Roanoke.
"You push whenever you have the opportunity and hope
something comes of it," he said.
Florida Adoption
Ban Challenged
MIAMI (AP) - The American Civil Liberties
Union has filed a class-action lawsuit to overturn
Florida’s law against Gay adoptions, the only
such statewide ban in the nation. TheACLU was
also joined by a child advocacy ~roup in the
lawsuit filed Wednesday in Key WeSt.
"They mastGays and Lesbians to be foster care
parents but not adoptive parents," said Howard
Simon, executive directoroftheACLUin Florida.
."What we want is to remove that blanket
prohibition.., so that they wouldbe evaluatedas
to their fitness and suitability to be adoptive
parents just like everybody else,’Y Simon said.
George .Waas of state Attorney General Bob
Butterworth’s office declined to comment.
Florida is the only state with a law that bans
homosexuals from adopting children: Lastmonth,
New Hampshire repealed its ban on Gay
adoptions. At least two states - Arkansas and
Utah - have state agency rides preventing
adoption by Gay people~
The lead plaintiff in the Florida suit is Steve
Lofton, a 41-year-old registered nurse. He and
his partner of 15 years, also a registered nurse,
have raised three foster children ages 8 to 11
from birth. Two are HIV-positive; the third, born
positive, no longer tests positive for the virus that
causes AIDS. The family recently moved to
Oregon.
NY State Gay Senator
Makes Issues Personal
ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - Somewhat sheepishly,
state Sen. Tom Duane rose to his feet in the
Senate one day this month and apologized to a
colleague for not having complained about a
provision in his bill sooner.
The measure would provide for state.
reimbursement for counsding to the spouse,
child or stepchild of a crime victim. Duane asked
the sponsor, Sen. Michael Nozzolio of Seneca
County, if domestic partners - the unmarried
partners of heterosexuals and homosexuals alike
- were eligible under the legislation. They are
not, Nozzolio said. If Duane’s own domestic
partner is murdered, would Duane be’eligible for
counsding? No was the eventual answer from
Nozzolio.
Duane pleaded with Nozzolio to amend the
bill. Nozzolio refused. Duane conceded that he
should have noticed the omission earlier, and
was not springing "somekind ofa surprise attack"
on Nozzolio by only now complaining about it
on the floor of the Senate. "You might find this
hard to believe," Duane said. "I have been Gay
for longer than I have not been Gay, but it’s not
the first thinS I think about in the morning."
Still, Duane’s sexual orientation is an
undeniable aspect of his personality, never far
from the surface in both how he goes about his
job as legislator and how others regard him. That
and the fact he is infected with HIV, the virus
which causes AIDS. Duane and the state Senate,
dominated as it is by conservative Republicans
from suburban and upstate New York, would
seemlike an awkward fit. Butnearly five months
into his first term in Albany, the Democrat from
Manhattan says he has been treated wall by his
new colleagues and he believes his presence has
had an effectinnudging forward abill toughening
penalties for hate crimes and another providing
more civil rights for Gays and Lesbians.
"Neither all of the other senators nor I knew
exactly what to expect," Duane, 44, said. "But I
think that time together and familiarity has in
some ways lessened the mystery about each
other." Twice so far on the floor of the Senate
when hate-crime related bills were being
discussed, Duane has spoken at length about the
three times he was assaulted by people spouting
anti-Gay epithets. "I’m not even going to talk
about all the times I’ve been verbally harassed,"
he said each time.
-" Matt Foreman of the Gay advocacy group
¯ Empire State Pride Agenda said having a sitting
¯ senator offering such powerful testimony cannot
¯ hdp but have an effect on softening attitudes,
¯ even in the Senate, which Foreman derides as
¯ "one of the las t bastions ofignorance andbigotry
gamst Gay people. It is a whole new dynaunc
i for us to have up here a senator who can go peer-
. to-peer and talk to people about our issues,"
¯ Foreman said.
¯ Senators and spectators alike listened with
¯ "rapt attention" when Duane talked about Gay-
" bashing incidents he was involved in, according
: to Foreman. "It becomes real," Foreman said.
¯ "HIV issues become real, and living with AIDS
¯ becomes real when a colleague is facing those
: issues himself. My sense is people thought he
¯ was going to be a radical... If anything, Tom can
: be one of the most charming and funny people in
¯
the w0rld."
¯ Duane said he may be impassioned, but he is
¯ still not all that comfortable discussing his
¯ homosexuality or HIV-positive status. That is
despite spending seven years on the New York
¯ City Council as an advocate for Gays and people
¯ living with AIDS before being elected to the
¯ Senate last November. "When I decide to raise ¯ the issues, I have to take a somewhat deeper
¯ breath than I do when I am going to speak on
: other issues because it is so personal and it has
¯ come withalong-termpersonal struggle with the
¯ whole issue of being out," Duane said. "It still
¯" doesn’t come naturally," he added. "I have to put
together my inner forces to be able to get up and
¯ speak on Lesbian-Gay issues and AIDS issues
¯ with the self-assurance and spirit that I think it
¯" needs to move my colleagues."
¯ One issue where Duane has had no effect is on
changing the state Senate’s policy ofnotextending
¯ benefits to the domesticpartners ofits employees.
~ The Democrat-controlled state Assembly does
¯ so, and so does the executive branch of
~ government under orders of Republican Gov.
¯ George Pataki. But the Senate does not. Its
¯ majority leader, Joseph Bruno, once referred to
¯ homosexuality as an "abnormal lifestyle." "It
¯ sends a signal that discrimination is tolerated,"
: Duane said of the policy. "It provides a
¯ disincentive to people not to be more out front..
¯ . It is blatant discrimination." Family benefits are
¯ designed for married couples and their children
~ and there are no plans to change the policy,
¯ Bruno spokesman John McArdle said.
¯ Methodist Anti-Gay
" Witchhunt Continues
¯ DENVER (AP) - A Methodist layman has
¯ accused a Denver-areabishop ofbreaking church
." law by.al,lowing a minister to officiate at same-
. sex umons. Mel Brown of Johnstown filed the
: complaint against Bishop Mary Ann Swenson
¯ with the denomination’s College of Bishops.
¯ The charge centers on the activities of the Rev.
¯ Toni Cook, pastor of St. Paul’s United Methodist
¯ Church on Capitol Hill, who acknowledges she
¯ has officiated at same-sex unions for"commiRed,
¯ loving couples." Brown said church law bars
¯ ministers from officiating at same-sex unions.
¯ He claimed Ms. Swenson is guilty "of
¯ disobedience to the order and discipline." The
¯ church’s Book of Discipline, says bishops are to
¯ "teach and uphold the theological traditions of
" the United Methodist Church." The church’s
." highest court, the Judicial Council, ruled earlier
¯ this year a person could face church charges for
¯ officiating at same-sex unions. Any church court
: proceeding would be lengthy, ff Ms. Swenson is
¯ found guilty of disobeying church law, she may
¯" be removed from her position.
¯ Ms. Swenson said she has felt "Mel Brown’s
¯ rage" for several years. The filing of charges is
: just another step in his efforts to force, her
¯ resignation, she claimed. Ms. Swenson said she
: is "not aware of actualities or specifics" about
¯ Ms. Cook’s ministry, but added that "there’s
¯ been no criticism of her work by the
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A Voicefor
Freedom & Tolerance
superintendent or her congregation." "It’s not my job to "
be a policeman," Ms. Swenson said.
Ms.Cooksaidsheis"dumbfounded,’aboutthecharges. ¯
"I believe my job as pastor is to offer the same pastoral "
support, sacraments and rituals to all members and that
includes Gays, Lesbians, Bisexuals and Transgendered ¯
people.Wedon’thave second:class citizens at St. Paul’ s,"
she said. "
St. Paul’s declared several years ago thatitis open to all "
people, including Gays. Brown’s charges wereforwarded ¯
to Bishop William Dew of Phoenix, who said that no
bishop has ever faced charges for allowing a minister to
officiate at same-sex unions. In the past several years, a
mi.’nister in Chicago and one in Nebraska were tried in
church courts forperforming such unions. One was found
guilty andone was foundinnocent. "To chargea supervisor
(bishop) after the fact may not go directly to the issue (of
same-sex union)," Dew said.
Church law requires Dew to ask the parties to meet to
resolve their differences. If that fails, a three-member
committeeis named which will meet with the twoparties.
If that committee decides the charges are grave, an
investigative committee will meet to decide whether a
church trial is warranted "In all my 63 years I’ve never :
seen a bishop on trial," said Dew. "A person should be ¯
absolutely dear and serious about charges against a -"
bishop." Brown, a semi-retired farm supply dealer, said
he filed the charges against Ms. Swenson rather than Ms.
Cook"to getmorenational attention. Mary AnnSwenson
should resign."
Hepreviously calledforherresignationin 1996 because
she, along with 14 other Methodist bishops, publicly
supported the right ofpracticingGays to be ordained. The
15, who made the dissent statement during the church’s
national convention in Denver, said th,e~( would follow
church law that bans such ordinations. Over the years
Brown has written letters to Ms. Swenson to complain
about her salary, how she spends vacation time and how
she votes on church issues.
Massachusetts Gay
Bashers Sentenced
NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (AP) - Three men have been
sentenced to jail for a Main Street attack on a Gay man a
year ago. Jameson Conz, 19, of Northampton; Zachary
Keefe, 20, ofNor~harapton, andJoshuaPhelps, 22,pleaded
guilty in Hampshire Superior Court to assault and battery
with intent to intimidate a person because of his sexual
orientation. Conz, who had gone to high school with the
19-year-old victim, and Keefe were ordered to serve 18
months of a 21/2-yearjail sentence. Phelps was ordered
to serve six months of a 2 1/2-year sentence. After
shouting anti-Gay slurs, the three beat and kicked the
victim on May 24, 1998, according to prosecutor Renee
Steese. "The incident was an unprovoked act of violence
against an individual simply walking back to his truck
after work," Steese told thejudge. "It had a very traumatic
effect on the victim."
Oregon House Considers
Anti-Gay Marriage Bill
SALEM, Ore. (AP) - A key state lawmaker has warned
that a court decision giving Gay public employees the
same benefits as married workers could dear the way for
same-sex marriages in Oregon.
Rep. Kevin Mannix, R-Salem, has proposed an
amendment to the state constitution to define marriage as
only the union between amanand a woman. The measure
would also bar the courts from requiring that unmarried
partners be entitled to domesticbenefits. Matmix said that
the measure is aimed an Oregon Court of Appeals ruling
!ast year that banned discrimination against homosexuals
in the workplace and required governments to provide
insurance benefits to same-sex domestic partners of
government employees.
Thedecisionwas basedonaPortlandnursingprofessor’s
case against Oregon Health Sciences University, where
she has worked for 12 years. Christine Tanner, a mother
of two who in a long-term relationship with another
woman, told the House Judiciary-Civil Committee that
Mannix’s proposal would erase that ruling. "Please,
please donot sendamessage tomychildren that, somehow,
their family is less than equal in the eyes of the state," she
said.
Jean Harris of Basic Rights oregon, a group that fights
anti-Gay meusttres, said theproposal was a thinly disgnised
attempt at discriminating against homosexuals. "We
already can’t get married - so why push this out?" she
asked. "It’s about keeping us from having benefits."
Mannix said the appeals court ruling leaves room for
others who are barred from marriage - like first cousins
- to also ask for rights that have been reserved for
heterosexual married couples. Hecalled the appeals court
ruling "perverse reasoning," and said most Oregonians
would support a constitutional amendment, which the
¯
courts could not change. "What we are doing is taking a
: position of neutrality," he .said. "But we are drawing a
¯ firmlineinprotectingatraditionalfamilytmit: marriage."
: Others said barring same-sex marriages would protect
¯ children from being raised outside of the "secure
: environment"ofaheterosexual union. "We are not taking
¯ the institution of marriage as seriously as we ought to,"
: said Jerry Propst, aBaptistminister from Hillsboro. "The
: institution of marriage is a sacred trust."
_" Dave Fidanque, director of oregon American Civil
¯¯ Liberties-Union, argued that the proposal would
discriminate against Gay Oregonians - and that it has
taken years to remove other discriminatory provisions
from the state constitution. "This proposal would permit
discrimination against a class of citizens in our state," he
said. "It would be as much of a mistake as past
¯ discrimination." The measure is HJR29.
",Gay Bank Closeto Opening
¯ PENSACOLA, Fla. (AP) - G&L Bank has entered the
: final phase of the federal approval process and is looking
: toward a possible fall opening as the nation’s first bank
_" designed primarily for homosexual customers.
¯ Thebank,whose initials standforGay andLesbian,has ¯
received a "deemed complete" letter on its application
," with the Office ofThrift Supervision, saidG&Lpresident
¯ Steven Dunlap. That means the federal agency has 60
¯ days to approve or deny the bank’s request to operate.
¯ "We have no reason to believe we Won’t get an up sign,"
¯" said bank president G. Kay Griffith. G&Lofficers earlier
, had hoped for a spring opening, but the approval process
i has taken longer than anticipated.
¯ In addition to focusing on homosexuals, G&L would
: beamong only afew banks operating nationallyprimarily
¯ on the Intemet and the first to offer consumer loans via e-
¯" commerce, said Griffith, aformer NationsBank executive
: and bank consultant. The downtown bank plans to hold
¯ an open house over the Memorial Day weekend, when
: thousands of Gays and Lesbians traditionally flock to
~ Pensacola area beaches. A similar open house last year
." attracted 1,400 visitors from 21 states, Dunlap said. G&L
¯ also is getting interest from Blacks and unmarried
¯" heterosexual couples who are looking for "a bank which
: doesn’tdiscriminate againstanybody,"Dunlap said. Many
~ banks refuse to consider dual incomes when unmarried
: .. couples apply for loans or mortgages, he said.
¯ Black Gay Church Thrives
CHICAGO (AP) - For Black homosexuals, many of
whom say they feel misunderstood by other Blacks as
¯ well as the white Gay community, one church offers a
¯ haven where they can worship without fear of
¯ discrimination.
Men with men, women with women, their children and
: parents are all welcome at the Church of the Open Door,
¯ say its founders, the Rev. Alma Faith Crawford and her
: partner, the Rev. Karen Hurt. The two pastors started the
¯ church, whichis affiliated with the Unitarian Universalis!
¯ Association, three years ago as a Bible study group ~n
their apartment.
¯ Since then, the congregation has grown to 275 and has
: settled into its own red brick house of worship in the
¯ Chicago Lawn neighborhood on the city’s southwest
side. At a time when many faiths are divided over the
inclusion of Gays and Lesbians and the ramifications of
: same-sex marriages, Open Door is the only place of
¯ worship in Chicago founded specifically for those who
¯ are both Gay and Black.
¯ Members say they joined Open Door after feeling
¯ unwelcome in other churches. "They will takemymoney ¯
but they won’t let me into heaven," said Lloyd Kelly, 38.
Kelly said he eventually grew tired of pastors and priests
: elsewhere saying that homosexuals will burn in hell.
Among the Open Door congregation are also members
: who previously attended churches that were open to Gays
and Lesbians but were predominantly white and not
always culturally sensitive. "It’s not that the Gay white
church letme down; the difference is that here my culture
as an African-American is celebrated," said Elandria
Henderson, 50, who drives across the city to attend
Sunday services at Open Door. The church’s two flagsa
rainbow banner of Gay pride and the red, Black and
green African-American heritage- are symbolic of most
of its congregation.
But Open Door’s founders say they also want others in
the diverse working class neighborhood who have felt the
sting of discrimination to feel welcome. "We want to
cross those bridges that divide us as African-Americans,
as immigrants, as peopledue to class, education or sexual
orientation," Crawford said.
To that end, the church offers English as a second
language and computer training in its annex. Church
leaders also have worked with neighbors to rid the area of
drug dealers and to start a block club. It is the church’s
community involvement, police say, that has likely
prevented any protests over what many might consider a
controversial congregation. "They want to be good
neighbors," said police Sgt. JohnAndrews."Sofar they’ve
been proactive and productive."
Virginia "Sodomy"
Law Challenged
ROANOKE, Va. (AP) - A Gay activist invited four of
Roanoke’s top law enforcement officials to join him in a
private act of sodomy, arguing if they don’ t prosecutehim
for soliciting sex, then they cannot prosecute 18 men
charged with allegedly seeking Gay sex in a city park.
Franklin Kameny, 74, a longtime Washington, D.C.,
Gay activist sent letters last week to Circuit Judges
Richard Pattisall and Robert Doherty, Assistant
Commonwealth’s Attorney Alice Ekirchand Police Chief
Arias "Joe" Gaskins.
The goal of the letters, he said in a telephone interview,
is to bring attent~" on to "these anta" quated sodomy laws m¯
Virginia.. which make felons of virtually every adult
member of the populous of the state." "It raises the
question that if they’ve been solicited and they don’t
respond,how can they charge other peoplefor soliciting?"
he said. The four letter recipients have either ruled in the
park sex cases or been involved in prosecuting the men.
Ms. Ekirch said she received the letter, which she
believes does violate the law against solicitation. She
declined to comment further, citing the ongoing cases.
The other recipients also have declined to comment.
Kamenywas notprosecuted afterhewentonan Alexandria
Gay issues radio show in December and solicited the
entire state of Virginia for sodomy.
For years, Roanoke police have brought misdemeanor
charges against "cruisers" who sought anonymous Gay
sex in the park and other public places. Police said
complaints from citizens about blatant sexual activity in
Wasena Park led them to seek felony sodomy indictments
against the men in the latest eases.
In his letter, Kameny invited the f,our officials "to,
engage withmein an act or acts of sodbmy of your choice
and as defined by S ection 18.2-361 of the Virginia Code,
in some indisputably private place in the state ofVirginia,
at a time of our mutual-convenience.’"
Kameny wrote that the letter would be "published and
publicized, with intent to embarrass each of you
individually and by name, and to bring you into public
contempt and ridicule nationally, as well as to make a
contemptible laughingstock of your benighted, barbaric,
backward state."
Theletter is similar to one Kameny wrote to Washington
officials in 1972 as part of a three-decade movement to
have the district’s sodomy law repealed. It finally was
repealed in 1993, with Kameny writing the statute.
Kameny said he "would be absolutely delighted" to be
arrested because it would afford him the opportunity to
make a media circus of a probable extradition hearing in
Washington, and each subsequent hearing in the case.
In open court, he said, he would solicit the judge for
sex, forcing him to disqualify himself from the case, and
continue soliciting everyjudge broughtin to hear the case
until no state judges remained digible.
Kameny also has posted e-mails on the Internet urging
others to solicit law enforcement personnel in Roanoke.
"You push whenever you have the opportunity and hope
something comes of it," he said.
superintendent or her congregation." "It’s not my job to
be a policeman," Ms. Swenson said.
Ms. Cooksaid sheis"dumbfounded"aboutthe charges.
"I believe my job as pastor is to offer the same pastoral
support, sacraments and rituals to all members and that
includes Gays, Lesbians, Bisexuals and Transgendered
people.Wedon’thave second-class citizens at St. Patti’s,"
she said.
St. Paul’s declared several years ago thatitis open to all
people, including Gays. Brown’s charges wereforwarded
to Bishop William Dew of Phoenix, who said that no
bishop has ever faced charges for allowing a minister to
officiate at same-sex unions. In the past several years, a
minister in Chicago and one in Nebraska were tried in
church courts forperforming such unions. One was found
guilty andonewas foundinnocent. ’~To charge a supervisor
(bishop) after the fact may not go directly to the issue (of
same-sex union)," Dew said.
Church law requires Dew to ask the parties to meet to
resolve their differences. If that fails, a three-member
committeeis named which will meetwith the two parties.
If that committee decides the charges are grave, an
investigative committee will meet to decide whether a
church trial is warranted. "In all my 63 years I’ve never
seen a bishop on trial," said Dew. "A person should be
absolutely clear and serious about charges against a
bishop." Brown, a semi-retired farm supply dealer, said
he filed the charges against Ms. Swenson rather than Ms.
Cook"to getmorenational attention. Mary AnnSwenson
should resign."
Hepreviously calledforherresignationin 1996because
she, along with 14 other Methodist bishops, publicly
supported theright of practicing Gays to be ordained. The
15, who made the dissent statement during the church’s
national convention in Denver, said they would follow
church law that bans such ordinations. Over the years
Brown has written letters to Ms. Swe~on to complain
about her salary, how she spends vacation time and how
she votes on church issues.
Massachusetts Gay
Bashers Sentenced
NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (AP) - Three men have been
sentenced to jail for a Main Street attack on a Gay man a
year ago. Jameson Conz, 19, of Northampton; Zachary
Keefe, 20, ofNorthampton, andJoshnaPhelps, 22, pleaded
guilty in Hampshire Superior Court to assault and battery
with intent to intimidate a person because of his sexual
orientation. Conz, who had gone to high school with the
19-year-old victim, and Keefe were ordered to serve 18
months of a 21/2-year jail sentence. Phelps was ordered
to serve six months of a 2 1/2-year sentence. After
shouting anti-Gay slurs, the three beat and kicked the
victim on May 24, 1998, according to prosecutor Renee
Steese. "The incident was an unprovoked act of violence
against an individual simply walking back to his truck
after work," Steese told thejudge. "Ithad a very traumatic
effect on the victim."
Oregon House Considers
Anti-Gay Marriage Bill
SALEM, Ore. (AP) - A key state lawmaker has warned
that a court decision giving Gay public employees the
same benefits as mamed workers could clear the way for
same-sex marriages in Oregon.
Rep. Kevin Mannix, R-Salem, has proposed an
amendment to the state constitution to define marriage as
only the union between aman and a woman. The measure
would also bar the courts from requiring that unmarried
partners be entitled to domesticbenefits. Mannix said that
the measure is aimed an Oregon Court of Appeals ruling
last year that banned discrimination against homosexuals
in the workplace and required governments to provide
insurance benefits to same-sex domestic partners of
government employees.
Thedecisionwas basedonaPortlandnursingprofessor’ s
ease against Oregon Health Sciences University, where
she has worked for 12 years. Christine Tanner, a mother
Of two who in a long-term relationship with another
woman, told the House Judiciary-Civil Committee that
Mannix’s proposal would erase that ruling. "Please,
pleasedonot sendamessage tomychildren that, somehow,
their family is less than equal in the eyes of the state," she
said. -
Jean Harris of Basic Rights Oregon, a group that fights
anti-Gay measures, said the proposal was a thinly disguised
attempt at discriminating against homosexuals. "We
already can’t get married - so why push this out?" she
asked. "It’s about keeping us from having benefits."
Mannix said the appeals court ruling leaves room for
others who are barred from marriage - like first cousins
- to also ask for rights that have been reserved for
heterosexual married couples. Hecalled the appeals court
ruling "perverse reasoning," and said most Oregonians
would support a constitutional amendment, which the
courts could not change. "What we are doing is taking a
position of neutrality," he said. "But we are drawing a
firmlineinprotecting atraditional family unit: marriage."
Others said barfing same-sex marriages would protect
children from being raised outside of the "secure
environment"ofaheterosexual union. "We are not taking
he institution of marriage as seriously as we ought to,"
said Jerry Propst, a Baptist minister from Hillsboro. ’q’he
nstitution of marriage is a sacred trust."
Dave Fidanque, director of Oregon American Civil
Liberties .Union, argued that the proposal would
discriminate against Gay Oregonians - and that it has
taken years to remove other discriminatory provisions
from the state constitution. ’q’his proposal would permit
discrimination against a class of citizens in our state," he
said. "It would be as much of a mistake as past
discrimination." The measure is HJR29.
Gay Bank Closeto Opening
PENSACOLA, Fla. (AP) - G&L Bank has entered the
final phase of the federal approval process and is looking
toward a possible fall opemng as the nation’s first bank
designed primarily for homosexual cnstomers.
Thebank, whoseinitials stand forGay and Lesbian, has
received a "deemed complete" letter on its application
withthe Office ofThrift Supervision, saidG&Lpresident
Steven Dunlap. That means the federal agency has 60
days to approve or deny the bank’s request to operate.
"We have no reason to believe we won’t get an up sign,
said bank president G. Kay Griffith. G&Lofficers earlier
had hoped for a spring opening, but the approval process
has taken longer than anticipated.
In addition to focusing on homosexuals, G&L would
beamong only afew banks operating nationally primarily
on the Internet and the first to offer consumer loans via ecommerce,
saidGriffith, aformer NationsBank executive
and bank consultant. The downtown bank plans to hold
an open house over the Memorial Day weekend, when
thousands of Gays and Lesbians traditionally flock to
Pensacola area beaches. A similar open house last year
attracted 1,400 visitors from 21 states, Dunlap said. G&L
also is getting interest from Blacks and unmarried
heterosexual couples who are looking for "a bank which
doesn’tdiscriminate againstanybody,"Dunlap said. Many
banks refuse to consider dual incomes when unmarried
couples apply for loans or mortgages, he said.
Black Gay Church Thrives
CHICAGO (AP) - For Black homosexuals, many of
whom say they feel misunderstood by other Blacks as
well as the white Gay community, one church offers a
haven where they can worship without fear of
discrimination.
Men with men, women with women, their children and
parents are all welcome at the Church of the Open Door,
say its founders, the Rev. Alma Faith Crawford and her
partner, the Rev. Karen Hutt. The two pastors started the
church, whichis affiliated with the Unitarian Universali.st
Association, three years ago as a Bible study group m
their apartment.
¯ Since then, the congregation has grown to 275 and has
¯¯ settled into its own red brick house of worship in the
¯ Chicago Lawn neighborhood on the city’s southwest
side. At a time when many faiths are divided over the
¯ inclusion of Gays and Lesbians and the ramifications of
¯ same-sex marriages, Open Door is the only place of ¯
worship in Chicago founded specifically for those who
." are both Gay and Black.
Members say they joined Open Door after feeling
unwelcome in other churches. "They will takemy money
: but they won’t let me into heaven," said Lloyd Kelly, 38.
: Kelly said he eventtmlly grew tired of pastors and priests
: elsewhere saying that homosexuals will bum in hell.
¯ Among theOpen Door congregation are alsomembers ¯
who previously attended churches that were open to Gays
and Lesbians but were predominantly white and not
always culturally sensitive. "It’s not that the Gay white
church letme down; the difference is that heremy culture
as an African-American is celebrated," said Elandria
Henderson, 50, who drives across the city to attend
Sunday services at Open Door. The church’s two flagsa
rainbow banner of Gay pride and the red, Black and
green African-American heritage- are symbolic of most
of its congregation.
But Open Door’s founders say they also want others in
the diverse working class neighborhood who have felt the
sting of discrimination to feel welcome. "We want to
cross those bridges that divide us as African-Americans,
as immigrants, as people due to clas s, education or sexual
orientation," Crawford said.
To that end, the church offers English as a second
languageand computer training in its annex. Church
leaders also have worked with neighbors to rid the area of
drug dealers and to start a block club. It is the church’s
comrmmity involvement, police say, that has likely
prevented any protests over what many might consider a
controversial congregation. "They want to be good
neighbors,"saidpolice Sgt. JohnAndrews."Sofar they’ve
been proactive and productive."
Virginia "Sodomy"
Law Challenged
ROANOKE, Va. (AP) - A Gay activist invited four of
Roanoke’s top law enforcement officials to join him in a
private act ofsodomy, arguing if they don’ t prosecutehim
for soliciting sex, then they cannot prosecute 18 men
charged with allegedly seeking Gay sex in a city park.
Franklin Kameny, 74, a longtime Washington, D.C.,
Gay activist sent letters last week to Circuit Judges
Richard Pattisall and Robert Doherty, Assistant
Commonwealth’s Attorney Alice Ekirchand Police Chief
Atlas "Joe" Gaskins.
The goal of the letters, he said in a telephone interview,
is to bring attention to"these antiquated sodomy laws in
Virginia... which make felons of virtually every adult
member of the populous of the state." "It raises the
question that if they’ve been solicited and they don’t
respond,how can they charge other people for soliciting?"
he said. The four letter recipients have either rnled in the
park sex cases or been involved in prosecuting the men.
Ms. Ekirch said she received the letter, which she
believes does violate the law against solicitation. She
declined to comment further, citing the ongoing cases.
The other recipients also have declined to comment.
Kamenywas notprosecuted afterhewentonan Alexandria
Gay issues radio show in December and solicited the
entire state of Virginia for sodomy.
For years, Roanoke police have brought misdemeanor
charges against "cruisers" who sought anonymous Gay
sex in the park and other public places. Police said
complaints from citizens about blatant sexual activity in
WasenaPark led them to seek felony sodomy indictments
against the men in the latest eases.
In hi.s letter., Kame.ny invi.ted the.four of.ficials "to
engage withmein an act or acts of sodb~ny of your choice
and as defined by Section 18.2-361 of the Virginia Code,
in some indisputably private place in the state of Virginia,
at a time of our mutual convenience."
Kameny wrote that the letter would be "published and
publicized, with intent to embarrass each of you
individually and by name, and to bring you into public
contempt and ridicule nationally, as well as to make a
contemptible laughingstock of your benighted, barbaric,
backward state."
Theletter is si rail ar to one Kameny wrote to Washington
officials in 1972 as part of a three-decade movement to
have the district’s sodomy law repealed. It finally was
repealed in 1993, with Kameny writing the statute.
Kameny said he "would be absolutely delighted" to be
arrested because it would afford him the opportunity to
make a media circus of a probable extradition heating in
Washington, and each subsequent hearing in the case.
In open court, he said, he would solicit the judge for
sex, forcing him to disqualify himself from the case, and
continue soliciting everyjudge brought in to hear the case
until no state judges remained eligible.
Kameny also has posted e-mails on the Intemet urging
others to solicit law enforcement personnd in Roanoke.
"You push whenever you have the opportunity and hope
something comes of it," he said.
Thymus Gland May :
Offer AIDS Hope
LOS ANGELES (AP) - An immune ¯
system gland once thought to be inactive ".
in adults actually continues to function :
late in life, according to research that ¯
couldlead tonew waysofreactivating the :
natural defenses of AIDS and cancer ]
patients. "
The thymus, a pinkish-gray organ near
the heart, is the primary source of germ- :
fighting T cells. It was believed to be ]
active only during fetal development and
childhood before slowly turning into fat :
in adults. The research reported in the ]
journal Immunity suggests that although ~
the gland’s productivity slows with age, it ¯
remains active nonetheless.
"It gives us hope thai if we can find
ways to boostup the activity ofthe thymus,
we could speed up the replacement of T
cells"lost to the AIDS virus, stud Beth D.
Jamieson, a biologist at the University of
California, Los Angeles AIDS Institute
who led the study. "There’s still a source
available forT cells, which wasnotthought
to be the case previously.’"
Drugs also could be developed for"
cancer patients whose immune systems
have been destroyed by chemotherapy.
But tests ofpossible treatments are at least
two years away, Jamieson said. David
Schwartz, professor of mol.ecular
microbiology-immunology at the Johns
Hopkins School of Public Health, said the
study offers important information that
will be "very useful for understanding
how we can generate new immune
responses as we get older."
"It means we don’t have to rely on T
cells that are produced in the first decade
of our lives," he said. Previous studies
showed that new T cells were being
producedby AIDS patients who had been
taking potentcombinations ofAIDS drugs.
But it was not known where in the body
those cells were being created.
The research found that the thymus
continues to turn stem cells produced .by
bone marrow into T cells that recogmze
the body’s foreign invaders and eider
attackthemdirectly orproduce antibodies
to finish them off. The UCLA researchers
studied more than a dozen thymuses from
organdonors andpeoplewhohad sections
of their glands removed during heart
surgery. Although agi.’ng does not appear
to decrease the effecttveness of the new T
cells,it does lead to areductionin quantity.
The oldest subject in the testing was 56.
for75% of HIV eases among Mississippi
women. Blacks make up 12% of the U.S.
population and 45% of new AIDS cases,
according to statistics from the Centers
for Disease Control Prevention. State
statistics show "the trend for African
Americanwomenhas beenonaconsistent
rise and that is disturbing," Thompson
said. "AfricanAmericanwomenconslatute
the fastest and only increase in population
in terms of morbidity with HIV disease,"
he said.
Cultural mores about the medical
community, a lack of medical care and
money to pay forit and thenumber ofmen
who are having sex with both men and
women are among the reasons HIV is
growing amongBlackwomen,Thompso.n
said. But the state health department is
¯ committed to working toward reversing
¯ the trend. "We’re trying to funnel federal
¯ prevention funds into community based
¯ organizations that work very dosdy with
¯ African American women to detect what
¯ places them at the greatest risk and what ¯
can be done to prevent that risk,"
¯ Thompson said.
¯ Fivemillion dollars in state and federal
¯ funds are also available to assist HIV and
AIDS patients receive medicine, he said.
¯ Data shows education is critical to
¯ decreasing the transmission of the HIV
virus, Thompson said. "It’s encouraging
¯
to look at the trend over time and look at
¯ where the money has been placed," he
¯ said. "African ,amaerican women are a ¯
number onepriority for f.unding so maybe
¯
in the next several years we will see these
¯ . numbers will go down."
Women also need tobecome advocates
¯ mddemandbetterfunding and educational
programs, said Tylene Harrell, resource
coordinator for the National Black
Women’s Health Project in Washington, .
D.C. It is critical to address cultural and
economic issues that affect the Black
¯ women because social issues affect their
behavior and their behavior can put them
at risk, Thompson said. "Poverty, sexual
abuse, family planning, virtually every
thing that happens in the state affects
people’s behavior," he said.
Modifying behavior and examining
relationships are essential to preventing
the spread of HIV, said Jackyie Coleman,
director of assistance with the National
Minority AIDS Council in Washington
D.C. "We must discuss the meaning sex,
the roles of men and women and trust
issues, Coleman said.
Jordan agrees. "Love cankill," she said.
"It was somebody that I thought I loved
and cared for thathad done this to me. But
I got over that. I amnot the victimbecause
I didn’t do what I should have done. We
¯ need to start investigating partners before
we get involved with them." Arming
¯ people with information and knowledge
¯ is apart of Jordan’s life mission now that ¯
¯ she has contracted the virus. "I want to
egapower boys, girls, men and women to
¯ know what’s out there." she said. "ff you
¯ don’t take charge of your life you give ¯
¯ somebody else charge to destroy your
life."
BlackWomen Need
Info. to Fight AIDS
JACKSON, Miss. (AP)-Seven years ago
when Betty Jordan was told she had
contracted the HIV virus she was
devastated anduninformed. "WhenI found
out I had HIV I didn’t even know what
HIV and AIDS was," she said Friday at
the Women with a Mission AIDS forum
for Black women sponsored by State
Department of Health. "When they told
me what it was I said ’youjusthanded me
adeath sentence that I don’tknow anything
about,’ "Jordan said.
Jordan, a 47-year-old AIDS educator
from Hattiesburg, is one of the many
Black women in the state who live with
HIV and AIDS. Black women make up
21% of Mississippi’s population living
with the virus, that causes AIDS, said
Craig Thompson, director of the STD/
HIV division of the state health
department.
Thompson said Black women account
¯ High Court Lets HIV
PrOtections Stand
: WASHINGTON (AP) - The Supreme
¯ Court rejected an appeal Monday by a
¯ Maine dentist who was sued for refusing ¯
t’o treat a woman in his office because she
¯ had the virus that causes AIDS. The court
¯ turnedawaywithoutcommentDr. Randon ¯
Bragdon’s contention that filling a cavity
¯ in Sidney Abbott’s tooth at his office
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would have posed a "direct threat" to his
health and safety.
Lower courts rejected the claim and
ruled for Abbott without even holding
trials on her claims of discrimination.
Although the action was not a ruling and
set no national precedent, it was praised
by Gay civil-rights advocates. "This is the
final chapter in a long history of this case,
which established that health-care
providers cannot refuse critical services
to patients with HIV based upon
unscientific beliefs about HIV
transmission," said Bennett Klein of the
Boston-based Gay & Lesbian Advocates
&Defenders. He servedas one ofAbbott’s
lawyers.
Bragdon, who did not return a message
left at his Bangor, Maine, office, had
urged the nation’s highest court to use the
case to clarify when disabled people can
be treated differently under a federal antiprejudice
law, the Americans with
Disabilities Act. The ADA protects the
disabled against discrimination in jobs,
housing andpublicacenmmodations. The
same Maine dispute was the subject of a
major Supreme Court decision just last
June, whenthejustices saidpeopleinfected
with HIV can sue under that 1990 law.
That decision was the court’s first ever
involving the human immunodeficiency
virus that causes acquired immune
deficiency syndrome. It was praised by
Gay civil-rights activists. In returning the
Maine case to a federal appeals court~be
justices said then that a health-care
provider’s actions should be judged
according to "the objectivereasonableness
of the views of health-care professionals
without deferring to their individual
judgments." Public health authorities say
ilieNis no documented case ofa dentist
contracting theAIDS virus from apatient.
Bragdon contended he should be
allowed to use his ownjudgment on how
to safely treat suchpatients. Hehad offered
to fill Abbott’s cavity at ahospital near his
office, but the procedure would have cost
more there. When the 1st U.S. Circuit
Court of Appeals restudied the case, it
ruled in December that Abbott’s legal
victory in the discrimination case should
stand andthat no tlial was necessary. She
had won a judgment saying Bragdon
should stop discriminating but received
no monetary award.
High Schooler May
Help Cure AIDS
AMES, Iowa (AP) -Ahigh school junior
who moved to the United States just six
years ago is winning someofthe country’s
top scholarships and conducting research
his teachers say could help win the fight
againstAIDS. When Feng Zhang came to
Iowa six years ago with his mother, he
spoke no English, but was eager to learn
the language - and more.
"I didn’t know how big this thing was I
was getting into," he says. "I just felt
fortunate to have the oppormnity."Today,
Feng is a 17-year-old junior at Roosevelt
High School in Des Moines. In tile past
three years he has won $54,000 in cash
and scholarships. The highlight came in
Philadelphia earlier this month, when he
captured the $40,000 first-place award in
an international science fair sponsored by
Intel Corp. That makes him one of the top
student scientists in the world.
Experts say Feng’s research offers clues
about stoppmg theAIDS virus. "This has
an applicationth;at could truly be
revolutionary," says Dr. Robert Donato,
Are You Gay. or Bisex.ual?
Are You Nat,ve Amer,can?
Suppo~ Group is here for you!
¯ Evening sup~ group meetings
¯ Relationship workshops
¯ Sho~ trips, outings and retreats
¯ Free HIV testing
For information call Tulsa Native American AIDS Prevention Project
at 582-7225 Ext. 208 or 218
,I
WORKING CLASS HEROES.IMAGES FROM THE POPULAR CULTURE
,it
Fred Jones Jr, Museum of Art
410 W, Royal
TSe University of Oklahoma
one of thejudges. Feng says he has always
known his mission. ’q?he purpose was to
get a good education and to do what I can
for the people around me," he says. He
learned that early, in the Chinese city of
Shijiazhuang, a sister city of Des Moines,
in the province of Hebei, a sister state of
I0wa. His parents are chemical engineers,
his mother a computer expert as wall. His
father also is a university administrator.
Feng remembers what they told him, day
after day: "Do the best you can do. Be the
best you can be. And do something for
humanity." "Definitely. That’s the
meaning of being alive," be said. Feng’s
mother, ShujunZhou, says she noticedhis
uncanny ability to memorize names as a
toddler.
In 1989, as a visiting scholar at the
University of Dubuque, she decided the
United States offered more advanced
educational and technological
opporttmities for her bright son. She
accepted ajob in Des Moines and brought
Feng, her only child, with her. The boy’s
father remained in China.
Marilyn Ritz, who teaches English as a
second language at Callahan Middle
School, was in her office when Feng, his
mother and a sponsor arrived. "What’s
your name?" she asked him. No response.
"He hadno cluewhatI was talking about,"
she says. The school had a part-time
teacher who spoke some Chinese. The
rest was up to Feng. He listened for key
words, thenlooked themupin his Chinese-
American dictionary. "I wanted to learn
to commumcate as soon as possible so I
could learn other things," he says. Says
Ritz: "Before long, he was getting
everything."
But while Feng is a serious student, "he
also has a nonsenous side to him," says
Sean Stanek, 17, a classmate who also
won an award in the Intcl competition.
"He’s not like one of those Type-A
personalities." Feng will tell you he’s not
perfect. He plays no musical instrument,
has no hook shot, and enjoys Saturday
morning cartoons, particularly Bugs
Bunny. But Stanek expects big things
fromhi s friend."He’ s the future,"he says.
"He’s bound to discover something
profound."
Maybe he already has. Two years ago
Feng began studying at the Human Gene
Therapy Research Institutein Des Moines.
For his science fair project this year, Feng
chose to study a retrovirus similar to HIV,
the AIDS virus. While AZT and protease
inhibitors try to prevent the duplication of
the AIDS virus, Feng wondered if it was
possible to genetically interfere with the
creation ofthe virus andrenderitharmless.
The results are promising.
Can Feng’s work lead to an AIDS cure?
"I’m not sure," he says. "I’d have to be
very lucky to do that." John Levy, a staff
scientist at the institute, plans to have
Feng’s research published in a scientific
paper. "This could have enormous
implications," he says. Feng’s not sure
what to do next or where to attend college.
He would like to combine his interests in
biology and computers and see where that
leads him.
U.Pittsburgh Leads
HIV Research
PITTSBURGH (AP) - To the Gay men
they sought for blood samples, the
University ofPittsburgh researchers were
known as the "vampires," people who
lurked in the basements and back rooms
of bars with needles at the ready. They
worked in cooperation with bar owners
¯¯ who plied subjects with free beer. They
enlisted the help of popular barflies who
¯ goaded other patrons into participating.
¯ They became the lifeblood of a ¯
pioneering researchproject, now 15 years
¯ old, that has changed treatment for HIV
¯ and offered a definitive glimpse of its
: history. ’qqae study raised the awareness
; level,"Gay bar owner Chuck Home said.
¯ "Just being involved in the study and
; goingevery sixmonths andkeeping (HIV)
¯ prominent in your mind, there was a
¯ tendency to lean to safe sex. "I fear to ¯
¯ think how many other people we would
have lost if we hadn’t had the study."
; Pitt’s researchers began looking for
~ study participants in 1982, two years
¯ beforeHIV-the virus that causes AIDS - ¯
was identified, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
¯ reported in Sunday’s edition. That initial.
¯ effort won them the opportunity to take
: part in the national Multicenter AIDS
¯ Cohort Study, also known as MACS, in
: 1983. The study officially began the
¯ following year in Pittsburgh,LosAngeles, ¯
Chicago and Baltimore. At the end of
¯ 1982, only three AIDS cases had been
: identified in Allegheny County, far fewer
¯ than in other cities. But the National ¯
Institutes of Health, which awarded four-
" year grants toMACS sites,was impressed
¯ with the Pitt team’s ability to find study
¯ volunteers and wanted a low-incidence
city for comparison. Researchers were
¯ helped by Gay bar owners, who promote
¯ the studyin their businesses and paid their
¯ staff to attend AIDS education classes so ¯
they could educate customers. The bar
¯ owners also helped set up recruitment
¯ tents atholiday picnics that attractedmore
than 3,000 Gay men.
¯ Honse, co-owner of Images and the
¯ Holiday Bar, both in Pittsburgh, recalled
¯ a Gay Philadelphia bar owner who asked ¯
him why he would want to chase, away
¯
business by reminding people about the
¯ virus. "When people die, they don’t buy
¯ any drinks at all. They’re not ever coming ¯
back," Honse remembered telling him.
: Nationwide, more than 5,600 Gay men
¯ have participated in the MACS study,
¯ including 1,242 from the Pittsburgh area. ¯
Of those involved in MACS, 1,685
." volunteers have died, 214 from the
¯ Pittsburgharea. The studycontinues today. ¯
¯ Twice ayear, participants give samples of
blood, semen, urine, feces and throat
¯ secretions, and can participate in other
." studies about psychological aspects of
¯ HIV infection. New data is used to learn
: about the role ofgenedcs andimmunology
¯ in the disease’s progression. MACS data
¯ set the standard formeasuring when HIV ¯
develops into full-blown AIDS and
¯ focused attention on the role of T-cells.
: Dr. John Mellors, director ofPitt’s HIV/
¯ AIDS program, tested the idea that viral ¯
levels in the blood reflect disease
: progression, as opposed to measuring its
¯ progress solely with T-cells. His findings
: led to a review of stored blood samples
¯ from more than 1,600 MACS volunteers,
¯ and life-saving drug regimens now are
¯ based on viral load as well as T-cell count. ¯
"pittsburgh has been right there at the
: center of MACS, provi,,ding leadership
: and active participation,’ said Dr. Sten
¯ Vermund of the University ofAlabamain
: Birmingham. He watched over the study
: for the NIH from 1988to 1994. This year,
¯ Pittsburgh was chosen as a testing site for
: AIDSvax, an AIDS-prevention vaccine.
Wemaybemovinginto snmmerbutthe ¯
arts are as busy as ever. One of Tnlsa’s :
great traditions is snmmer films on the ¯
lawn at Philbrook. Gates open at 7pm for :
.picnicking and the films begin at dusk, ".
usually about 9pro. It’s only $5 ($3 if ".
you’re a member). The first
film is "The Miracle of
Morgan’s Creek," a 1944
comedy by Preston Sturges.
Early in July (7/2), Shirley
MacLaine stars with John
Forsythe in Hitch-cock’s
’q’he Trouble with Harry."
Down at Tbe Performing
Arts Center, Theatre No_rib
presents the gospel musical,
Gospel at Colonus based on
Sophocles’ Oedipus at
Colodus,f~omJune 24-27in
the Doenges Theatre.
Theatre Tulsa is doing
something but as usual, that
organization continues its
several year policy of
discriminating against
Tulsa’s Lesbian and Gay
press, and therefore, Gay
theatre-goers, and still only
provides information to
some media. You’dthinkby
now they’d get it. 33 cents, I
guess is too much extra to
spend for some free press.
However, our thanks go
to American Theatre
Companywho’vebeengreat
to work with in the last few
months. ATC will be
presenting Shakespeare in
the Park with the greatbard’ s
"As You Like It" rnnning
June 10-12 and June 17-19 at Manion
Park,3003 East56th Street, direcdy behind
Nimitz Middle and Grimes Elementary
Schools. This is anotherpicmcopportumty
and tickets are only $6. Slxmsors are the
Oklahoma Arts Council, Fox 23, KCFM
and Z104 and one of those other
aewspapers out there.
ATC will also present a musical
premiere, "Big Blondes" on July 9-24 at
thePAC’s WilliamsTheatre. BigBlondes
featuresMaeWest, Marlene Dietrich,and
Marilyn Monroe and is directed by, of
course, Jim Queen. Imagine that.
The
d-the p~t l~ve
ml,htr "white,"
it’s ~ee to ~a
little
sn~~ there.
N~ ff ~*~
i~*t do ,o~tM~O
a~ut the
eomp~sory
heter~xuality -oh
wait, we fo~t,
hom~ls of any
~to~l
si~n~ and even
~ tkere we~, here
O~ho~ w~re
not ~gto
a~ut them.
fo~t Dr. Davy
Goble ~ve us
ym~ of hom~fr~
Tul~ ~story.
Definitely one not to miss.
Early this month, theArts &Humanities
Council will be presenting Chautauqua,
Voices ofRagtime, Visions ofour Future
Past at OSU-Tulsa, 700 No. Greenwood.
Interestingly, these free presentations
which feature amateur
recreations of historical
figures have added this year,
a Black historical figure,
Madame Walker, a selfmade
millionaire entrepreneur.
The Chautauqua’s of the
past have been mighty
"white," so it’s nice to see a
little diversity sneaking in
there. Now if we could just
do something about the
compulsory heterosexuality
-oh wait, we forgot, there
werenohomosexuals ofany
historical siguifieance and
even ff there were, here in
Oklahoma, we’re not going
to talk about them. Don’t
forgetDr. DnnnyGablegave
us 100 years of homo~free
Tulsa history.
And while we’re picking
on the Arts & Humanities
Council, any one want to bet
that this year’s "Wedding
Sampler in the Tradition of
Harwelden" remains as
oblivious to the emergence
of I_~sbian and Gay Unions
as the first one? Not that the
issue hasn’t been brought to
their attention both by this
newspaper and by one of
theirreally, really cool board
members. We’ll see.
Also, the big arts organization have
announced their upcoming seasons. The
Opera’s going traditional with, alas, no
Mozartthis year. TulsaBallet will provide
the Oklahoma premiere "Lady of the
Camellias" based on the novel by
AlexandreDumas. This storywas also the
inspiration for Garbo’s Camille and
Verdi’s La Traviata. Tulsa Ballet will
open its season early in October with
Anna Karenina and will close the season
with Carmina Buranain April 2000.
- TFN entertainment editor
TOHR & Cimarron Alliance
present
A Black Tie Optional Dinner
with
US Congressman
Barney Frank
4th District, Massachusetts
Saturday, June 12, 1999
Greenwood Cultural Center
322 North Greenwood
Dinner and cash bar cocktails: $50
Dinner and cocktails with the Congressman: $125
Information: 743-4297
&
goddesses
tlairtIappTtlour
Tuesday Thursday
3pmtoSpm
835-5563
1247 S. Harvard,Tulsa, NearTO
TheShefaFund, aPhiladelphiafoundation
has started a new initiative to move the
Jewish community beyond mere
acceptance a~dinclusionofGay,Lesbian,
Bisexual and Transgendered Jews toa
stance ofwelcoming and celebration. The
Pooled Fund for Jewish Community
Activism on Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and
Transgendered Issues is now seeking
proposals in its t-h-St year of grantmaking.
The Shefa Fund anticipates granting
$40,000 in 1999, with grants in the range
of $5-20,000.
"The Jewish community has made
strides toward more inclmive policies
regardingGay andLesbianJews andtheir
families;’said Sue Hoffman, Shefa Fund
Associate Director and manager of the
grantmakingprogram."Buttheexperience
of young teem and families with Gay,
Lesbian and Bisexual members indicates
that the Jewish community still does not
o welcome- let alone celebrate- our lives
:¯ and leadership potential." Acenrding tothe ShefaFmadpresident,
: Jeffrey Dekro, "the point is that Gay,
¯ Lesbian and Bisexual oppression is a
: mainstream Jewish issue. The expansion
¯ of rituals that we seek would expand the
¯ -range of ritmal for dl Jews; the visibility
¯ that we seek would increase visibility for
: a/t Jews in their communities; the anti-
" violence activism that we seek would
; increase the safety of a/l Jews. This is
about expanding possibilities and
¯
inmgrating identities."
¯ Priority will be given to projects that
¯ promote social change, rather than
; providing community SerVlCe~. ¯ Formoreinfo. contact: TheShefaFund,
¯ 805 E Willow Grove Ave., Wyndmoor,
¯ PA 19038, tel: 215-247-9704, fax: 215- ¯
247-1015 or by e-mail:
: shefafnd@libertynet.org
Housekeeping&
Gardening Service
Contact Paul on:
(918) 582 846O
POB 3150
Tulsa, OK, 74101
Want to get involved?
Need to get tested
for HIV?
Need a Coming Out
Support Group?
Call 743-GAYS
Tulsa Gay
Community
Services
Center
1307 E. 38th at Peoria,
2nd floor
PRIDE ’99 "PRIDEFUL PAST... POWERFUL FUTURE!
TULSA’S FIRST ANNUAL
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BEGINS @ 10:00 AM @ 38th& PEORIA
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JUNE 12th PRESENTED BY: TULSA OKLAHOMANS FOR HUMAN RIGHTS
SPONSORED BY: BUD LIGHT & MCC UNITED
FOR MORE INFORMATION CALL 918-743-4297
Internet I;~ccess /~t its I~est
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Virtual Hosting
Visit our web page
"www.igisweb.net"
(918) 622-4965
Internet Marketing
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On-Site Setup Available
9th Annual Candlelight Tour
June 5th & 6th, 10- 5pm, 1 - 5pm
1685 E. 37th St. 2929 S. Rockford
1396 E. 25th St. 2704 S. Victor
Tickets SlO at homes or at M.A. Doran, Chas. Faudree, or Jared’s
~" SUNDAYS
Bless the Lord At All Times Christian Center
Sunday School ~ 9:45am, Service - 11 am, 2207 E, 6th, 583-7815
Community of Hope (Welcoming), S¢~dce - 6pm, 2545 S. Yale, 585-1800
Community Unitarian Univemalist Congregation
Service - 11am, 2545 S. Yale, 749-0595
Church of the Restoration Unitarian Universalist
Service - 1 lam, 1314 No. Greenwood, 587-1314
Metropolitan Community Church United
Service, 1 lam, 1623 North Maplewood, Info: 838-1715
House of the Holy Spirit Ministries, Inc.
Sunday School - 9:45am, Service - 10:45am, 3210b So. Norwood
Parish Church of St. Jerome (Evangelical Anglican Church in America)
Mass - 1lain, 205 W. King (east of No. Denver), Info: 582-3088
University of Tulsa Bisexual/Lesbian/Gayfrransgendered Alliance
6:30 pro, Meets at the Canterbury Cir., 5th & Evanston, 583-9780
Council Oak Men’s Chorale, rehearsals at 5pro, Info: 585-COMC (2662)
~ MONDAYS
Mixed Volleyball, Helmefich Park, 71st & Riverside, 6pm, call Shawn at 243-5190.
HIV Testing Clinic, Free & anonymous testing. No appointment required.
Walk in testing: 7-8:30pm, 834-TEST (8378) 3501 E. Admiral (east of Harvard)
HIV Rap Sessions at Bless the Lord At All Times Christian Center
7:30pro, 2207 E. 6th, 583-7815
PFLAG, Parents, Families & Friends of Lesbians & Gays
2nd Mon/each too. 6:30pm, Fellowship Congregational Church, 2900 S. Harvard
Women/Children & AIDS Committee, call for meeting date, noon, 585-5551
~TUESDAYS
AIDS Coalition of Tulsa, call for next meeting date. 1430 S. Boulder, 585-5551
Live And Let Live, Community of Hope United Methodist, 7:30pro, 2545 S. Yale
Multicultural AIDS Coalition, call for next meeting date¯
Urban League, 240 East Apache, 584-0001
Rainbow Business Guild, Business & prof. networking group. Info: 743-4297
PrimeTimers, mens group, Pride Center, 1307 E. 38th
Coming Out Support Group (TOHR/HOPE)
Tuesdays, 6 pro, Pride Center, 1307 F~ 38th, info: 743-4297
~ WEDNESDAYS
Bless The Lord At All Times Christian Center
Prayer & Bible Study, 7:30 pm 2207 E. 6th, 583-7815
House of the Holy Spirit Ministries, Inc. Service - 7pm, 3210b So. Norwood
Tulsa Native American Mens Support Group, more information, call 582-7225
TCC Gay & Lesbian Association of Students (GLAS), Call for info: 595-7632
Lambda A-A, 7 pro, 1307 F~ 38th, 2nd ft.
I~ THURSDAYS
HOPE, HIV Outreach, Prevention, Education
~ Anonymous HIV Testing, Testing:. 7 - 8:30pm 834-8378, 3507 F~ Admiral
Oklahoma Rainbow Young Adult Network (O’RYAN)
Support/social group for 18-24"s, call Red Rock Mental Health at 584-2325
Substance Abuse Support Group for persons with HIV/AIDS, Into: 83~. "!. 194
i~- FRIDAYS
SafeHaven, Young Adults Social Group, 1st Fri/eachmo. 8pm,PrideCtr., 1307 E. 38th
~’~ SATURDAYS
Narcotics Anonymous, 11 pro, Community of Hope,1703 ~ 2nd, Info: 585-1800
Lambda A-A, 6 pm, Pride Center, 1307 F~ 38th, 2rid fl~ ..... :
~OTHER GROUPS , ~
T.U.L.S.A. Tulsa Uniform & Leather Seekers Association, info: 838-1222
Gal-A-Vantiag, Womem Social &Cultural Group
Call for info: Mary at 743-6740, Kathy at 322-6322, or Barb at 459-6825.
OK Spoke Club, Gay & Lesbian Bike Organizalio~ Long tides: 7am, 6/5 & 6/19
and short ride: 6:30pm, 6/9 from Zeigler Park. Long ride: 9am, 6/26 and short ride:
6:30pm, 6/23 from Tulsa Gay Community Center.
Write for info: POB 9165, Tulsa, OK74157
lfyour organization is not listed, please let us know. Call 583-1248 orfax 583-4615.
by Barry Hensley
Tulsa City County Library System
One group often overlooked in the Gay
community is Gay and Lesbian Aftican-
Ameticans. There is finally beginning to
be somerecognitionofthis ignoredgroup,
and Keith Boykin’ sbookfills animportant
need.
"One More River to Cross"
is divided into chapters on
various topics, includingBlack
Homophobia, Gay Racism,
Faith in the Lives of Black
Americans, andAreBlacksand
Gays the Same?
In discussing Black
homophobia, Boykin review
how some Black leaders,
including Eldtidge Cleaver,
Frances Welsling andMinister
Louis Farrakhan, who have
associatedhomosexuality with
the decline of the Black
community.
In one of the more
improbable examples,Boykin
quotes controversial walter
ShahrazadAli (author of’q’he
Blackwoman’s Guide to
Understanding the Black
Man’) as she claims that all movement
Black male homosexuals "’...
cook, sew and bake and are emerges as the
determined to be a better
woman than all the women
they know." Many interesting
topics are citedhere, including
homophobia in rap music and
instances of Black magazines
and parade organizers rejecting
participation by Black, Gay groups.
In the chapter on Gay racism, Boykin
points to several national Gay
organizations, such as the Human Rights
Campaignandthe National Gay&Lesbian
Task Force, and is astounded that ,
although they claim to stand for equality
for all, they have very few Black
employees.
The Gay media, also, is a target: "like
its heterosexual counterpart, the white
Gay media usually projects Eurocentric
images of beauty that transmit messages
inferiority to Black and others who do not
Boykln cites
several other
instances where
the terms
"Black" and
"Gay" are
interehan~ah]e.
eorre]ation
between the
Black eivll
rightsmovement
and the Gay
elvll rights
and anti-Gay harassment flourishes
uncheckedin ournation’s schools." Smith
added that despite the evidence in the
AMA report that stigmatization can have
devastating consequences for Gay youth,
the"extremetightcontinuedtheir ongoing
attacks this week by unveiling an anti-
Gay television ad in Washington." -
HRC has singled out a television ad,
which aired on UPN’s Washington
affiliate. The ad whichHRCcharacterizes
as "anti-Gay" is an extension of last
summer’s $500,000 "Truth In Love"
newspaper campaign. The ad shows a son
thanking his mother for telling him what
she regards as the truth about
homosexuality, and that he could change
through the help of an "ex-Gay" ministry.
"My son found out the trdth, he could
walk away from homosexuality. But he
found outtoo late. Hehas AIDS," says the
actor pla~ing the ad’s "morn."
TheHumanRights Campaigncountered
the "truth In Love" ad with their own
advertisement. The 45-second HRC ad
titled "Baby" urges parents to teach their
most intriguing
argument in
this book.
¯ " fit the white stereotype.
¯ "Are Blacks and Gays the Same?"
: includes an interesting quote from former
¯. Texas senator John Tower, commenting
¯ on the 1964 Civil Rights Act: "[it would]
¯ deny to millions of employers and
: employees any freedom to speak or act on
the basis of their religious
convictions or their deeprooted
preferences for
associating or not associating
with certain classifications of
people."
Boykin’s comment: ’q’he
complaints rings loudly-today
against homosexuals as they
did yesterday against Aftican-
AmeticallS."
The argument that was used
in the "Gays in the military"
controversy ofafew years ago,
first emerged as integration of
the US Armed Forces in the
1940’s was discussed. In 1948,
opponents of integration said,
"The presence of Black
soldiers in the Army would
create disharmony and drive
away whites."
In the 1990’s version,
"hiding behind the amorphous,
catchall ,phrase, of ’unit
cohesion, supporters of the
Gay ban argue that Lesbians
and Gay men serving openly
wouldmake other soldiers feel
uncomfortable." Boykin cites.
several other instances where
the terms "Black" and "Gay"
¯ are interchangeable.
¯ The correlation between the Black civil
rights movement and the Gay civil rights
¯ movement emerges as themostintriguing
¯ argument in this book. While the other ¯
chapters peak the reader’s curiosity and
¯ interest, they pale in comparison to the
¯ sections on these similar movements for
¯ equality.
." Check for "One More River to Cross"
¯ at your local branch library or at the
¯ Readers’ Services department, 596-7966
at the Central Library.
: This review first ran in Tulsa Family
¯ News, vol. 4, no. 3, February 1997.
¯
kids tolerance and to not discriminate.
¯ Produced l~y TBWA/Chiat/Day, it
¯ featured an infant with a narrator asking
¯ who will teach the baby the important
¯ joys and lessons of life. "Behold wonder.
¯ Who will teach him to tie his shoes? To
¯ ride abicycle?To find faces in the clouds?
¯ Who will teach him to love and respect ¯
people for who they are.., unless they’re
¯ Gay? Who will teach him that? Will
¯ you?" ¯
¯ HRC’s Smith added, "these suicide statistics show that it is imperative to
¯ reach Gay andlesbian youthwith positive
¯ images to counter the barrage of anti-Gay
: material put forth by the far tight...We
¯ hope our ad and other similar efforts
¯ contribute toward creating a societywhere
the next generation of Gay and Lesbian
: youth can live relatively free of the
: indignities and violence that many of
: today’s youth face."
¯ HRC’s ad ends with a line saying
: "choose tolerance," and an imagereading
¯" "In memory of Matthew Shepard, 1976-
~ 1998." Neither the "Truth In Love"
¯ campaign nor HRC have announced any
"- plans to air these commercials outside the
: Washington, D. C. area.
Red Rock Tulsa
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Walk-in Clinics
Tuesday Testing, 5 -8 pm
Pride Center, 1307 East 38th
Wednesday Testing, 5-8 pm
Red Rock, 1724 East 8th
Daytime appointments available.
Call for more information:
918-584-2325
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of the Restoration
Unitarian Universalist
11 am, Sunday
1314 North Greenwood
587-1314
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by Mary Schepers, Do-It-Yourself-Dyke
Your DIYD left you on your knees
languishing at her feet last month - oh,
don’t move yet! I’m not finished with
you. I want to see what you can do with
your tape measure. Are you thinking
naughty thoughts? Well, save that for
later; right now we need to
concentrate on finding the
square footage ofyourkitchen
floor, then we’ll discuss your
options for flooring materials
in our last installment on
freshening up your kitchen on
a shoestring - well, maybe two
shoestrings.
To determine your square
footage, multiply length times
width. That’s easy enough if
your floor is a plain square or
rectangle, but if you have an
"el" shape or something more
funky, you’ll have to break it
up into areas and add the
numbers. I always add a few
extra square feet to the sum
just to be on the safe side.
You will find, as you look
around for flooring, that the
costis usually figuredi9, square
feet; even carpeting Is
beginning to go this way. It’s
about time. Your DIYD like
uniformity - preferably on
someone else. But we digress
again. We will look at your
options only on the vinyl
flooring, since anything more
ambitious, such as tile or
Petgo, really belongs in your
real kitchen rehab; it is too
cost-prohibitive for this
project. But if you insist on it,
darling, your DIYD’s
admonitions are for naught.
Thatleaves us with sheet vinyl
[one piece] or peel and stick
squares.
The peel and sticks have
several advantages - they’re
relatively inexpensive and
easy to install, there are lots of
.cglors and styles, and they are readily
available. You will need to start from a
spot in the center of the room and work
outward, as you do in file. Also, lay it out
"dry" and make any adjustments that will
keep youfromcutting httle bits ofsquares.
You will want to start down the middle of
has instead brought it closer together
withinitself, and also with the rest ofSoho
community, according to Nick Laurence,
of the American Retro store in Old
Compton Slreet. He said the spiritin Soho
over the weekend had been one of "high
resilience." Mr Laurence said: "One of
the real positive things to come out of this
is that people’s initial reaction has been
one of humanity."
A service of remembrance was held in
the gardens of Soho’ s St Anne’s church,
and began at 6:40pro - the time the bomb
went off. Clare Herbert, the rector of St
Anne’s, said: "In that act of proud
reflection we very much hope the people
of Soho, of this community which offers
a welcome to so many people and which
has been so badly shocked will come
¯ an aisle and work outwards if that is a
: consideration. Think of where the eye
¯
falls in looking down an aisle- thelength.
¯ You don’t want to stray off, and this is
very critical if the aisle connects two
¯ rectangles.
¯
You’ll want toremoveany quarterround
Your DIYD
leh you on
your knees
languishing at
her feet last
month - oh,
don’t move yet!
I’m not finished
with you.
I want to see
what you can
do with your
tape measure.
Are you
thinking
naughty
thoughts?
~rell, save that
for later; right
now we need
to concentrate
on finding the
square [ootage
of your kitchen
floor, then we’ll
discuss your
options for
flooring
materials...
and thenreplace itwhen you’re
finished; you’ll probably have
to put in new, since it doesn’t
rip off gracefully, it will also
help hold your vinyl tiles in
place. This is a good time for a
warning about vinyl tiles - they
have a bad habit of"floating",
so keep the following tips in
mind: buy the thickest,
sturdiest ones you can find
and can afford; keep
everything fight - where you
join them, where they butt the
wall, and so on; and don’t try
to cheat by not putting any
under the fridge or the stove.
ff the existing flooring is in
good shape, with no tears,
ridges orbumps, youcan apply
the tiles right over the top.
Make sure the floor is Joan
Crawford immaculate. Use a
square and a board and utility
knife to cut your edge files,
and remember - snug!!!
For sheet flooring, Armstrong
makes some that you
can do yourself. It comes with
a kit so that you can make a
template of your floor, cut it
out, then glue it down. There
is a video that gives you the
particulars. This is arewarding
project for anyone who has
somebasic skills, fearlessness
and good anal retentiveness.
For those of you who are less
intrepid or who have a more
challenging kitchen layout,
haveit installed. Itdoesn’t take
long and the cost increase is
relatively minimal. Take time
to shop around; some of the
discount flooring houses can
¯ be a good value, but be careful andbe sure
¯ to ask for references and then call them.
¯ Sonow yourkitchen has been repainted,
¯ the new counter tops are gleaming, and
the floor looks so lovely - it’s time to show
: it off. Have a nice dinner. Invite your
¯ DIYD. She’ll be so proud of you.
¯ together with the other community that
¯ has been shocked and injured, the Gay
¯ community." ¯
In Sohd Square, people from across
¯ London have come to lay flowers for
¯ those killed and injured. On the Sunday
¯¯ justafter thebombing, thousands ofpet.pie
packedinto Soho Squarenear thebombed
¯ pub to mourn those hurt. Angela Mason,
¯ a director of the Gay and Lesbian lobby
¯ group, Stonewall, told the’crowd of 2,000
: people: "Nobody, butnobody, is going to
¯ bomb us back into the closet."
The chairman of the Commission for
: Racial Equality, Sir Herman Ouseley,
¯
warned in a TV interview that ethnic
¯ commumties could rise up against"racial
: terrorism." "I think you have got to
¯ understand the way in which some
¯ communities have been under siege for a
¯ longperiod oftime- it’s notjust areaction
: to the bombing," he said.
by Esther Rothblum : is aperception thatroleplays are somewhat
Lesbians, like other women, face : fake, butinfacttheyeanbeverypowerful."
challenges finding affordable andquality ¯ I asked Dr. White what some good
-health care. But are there particular " opening questions are for doctors who
difficulties being a Lesbian patient in the : want to be sensitive to Lesbian patients.
health care system? I "Youcanstartbyasking’are
interviewed Dr. Jocelyn
White, a physician who has
.conducted research on
Lesbians’ access to health
care. "Lesbians face all the
typical issues such~having
health insurance, traveling
somedistanceforhealthcare,
finding child care while they
visit a health care provider,
or being able to take time off
from work," she said. "In
addition there is a specific
domestic partner, issue that
Lesbians have, because
unlike heterosexual women
who are legally married, few
Lesbians can be insured
under their parmer’s policY.
But the real issue is
providers’ inability to
communicate sensitively and
.effectively with their
patients. Also, providers
often have a lack of
knowledge about the health
issues of Lesbians."
Dr. White has found that
many providers would like
ito have Lesbian patients but
don’t have theknowledge or
experience to be good
providers. She and her
"It’s very
interesting for
the heterosexual
doctors and
nurses to have
to play the ¯role
of a Lesbian,"
said Dr. White,
"because they
have to start
trying to
identify with
what it feels like
to be a Lesbian
patient who has
d’doctor say
something to
them that is
insensitive.
colleagues have traveled around the
country educating health care providers
in how to communicate effectively with
Lesbian patients and increase their
.knowledge base of Lesbian health care
Issues.
She says "inmy workshops I give a talk
on the primary care of Lesbian patients.
Wetalk aboutparenting, comingout, HIV,
sexually transmitted diseases, cancer risk
and screening, depression, substance
abuse, domestic violence, hate crime
violence, and social issues. Many of the
doctors who come to these workshops
will go on to teach these issues to their
students and medical residents, so it’s
important for me to teach communication
skills."
In one of Dr. White’s role-plays, a
workshop leader will play a Mexican-
American data entry technologist who
comes in wanting to talk about parenting
options. "The task of a workshop
participant is to determine her sexual
orientation and discuss options such as
insemination, consider appropriate
referrals, and deal with these issues
sensitively," Dr. White said, "The person
playing therole ofthe patientis scripted to
present somechallenges."Otherworkshop
participants are asked to be observers and
comment on what they saw andfelt during
the role play. InanOther role play, the
worksh0pleader plays thepart ofapatient
who has breast cancer, and tells the doctor
that her partner no longer wants to have
sex with her.
"It’s very interesting for the
heterosexual doctors and nurses to have to
play the role ofa Lesbian," said Dr. White,
"because they have to start trying to
identify with what it feels like to be a
Lesbian patient who has a doctor say
something to them thatis insensitive. There
you partnered, married,
single, or divorced?’ rather
than launching right in with
such questions as’whatkind
of birth control do you use?’
she answered. "You can ask
’do you have a significant
other?’ or ’who is in your
family?’ in order to
demonstrate that you are
open to hearing about
broader definitions of
relationships and families.
She added, "You want to
learn aboutthe social history
of the patient and it’s also
important to be comfortable
taking a sexual history if
necessary. Few doctors are
comfortable taking a sexual
history, even if they do it
every day, because we don’t
talk much about sex in our
culture. Sexual questions by
doctors need tomakeit clear
to the patient that an),
response is possible."
Dr. White has surveyed
Lesbians about advice they
wouldgive doctors. "Almost
to a person they all said
’don’t assume I’m
heterosexual’ so we need to
¯ workonbreakingdown thoseassumptions
: of heterosexuality," she said. LesbiAn
: respondents also told ofnegahveincidents
: with their doctors. Dr. White described
¯ one of these anecdotes: "One woman had
severe vaginal hemmoraghing and went
to the. emergency room. The doctor,
assuming she was heterosexual, asked
about birth control and pregnancy. When
she told the doctor she was a Lesbian, he
flushed, got embarrassed, terminated the
interview, left the cubicle, andnevercame
back. A different woman came back and
completed the pelvic exam. The Lesbian
patient was horrified and felt humiliated.
She immediately sought out a Lesbian
doctor."
Another anecdote: "A Lesbian was in a
motorcycle accidentin which she collided
head on with a bus. She told the doctor she
was a Lesbian, and he putin 100 sutures in
her leg without novocaine. He didn’t xray
her skull, even though she had lost
consciousness during the accident, and
missed a skull fracture. So this doctor
committed assault and battery as well as
malpractice and now he is being
investigated."
In sum, Dr. White’s mission is to hdp
doctors provide better care for Lesbian
patients and help Lesbians feel goodabout
themselves so that they know their fights
in the doctor’s office. She encourages
Lesbians to keep looking foragooddoctor
and. keep moving on until they find a
doctor they can be happy with. She tells
Lesbians to talk with their friends about
doctors who are trusted in their
community, or else go to talks given by
doctors and ask questions about
affirmative doctors. "We deserve a good
doctor..It’s our right and we should not
tolerate poor health care. We should just
walk out if the doctor is homophobic, and
IGTA member
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Tulsa Locations:
2001 S. Garnett, 437-2a.~.~,
3733 S. Memori!l, 6600344
1216 S. Harvard, 587-1778
Sapulpa Location:
109 N. Mission, 227-2322
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by Lamont Lindstrom, Ph.D.
Sunday, I sat on the curb of Long
Beach’s OceanAvenueto watch the city’s
annual Gay pride parade. Noisy bar floats,
too.thy politicians ridinginnew BMW’ers,
various "Miss Things" and "Mr. Thats,"
drill teams, baton twirlers,
bands, community service
organi-zation members,
church choirs singing on
flatbed trucks, and family of
all sorts passedonbymarching
down the avenue.
A few feet up the street,
huddled together in a vacant
lot, a clutch ofprotesters from
one of the more apocryphal
Christian sects heckled the
paraders. They howled out
occasional threats of
damnation and hellfire. They
waggled their signs and
bellowed hoarse abuse’ at
passing muscle boys inmuscle
cars whb, in turn,honked their
horns to drown out the chatter
of these volunteer Jeremiahs.
The emergence
y space
and the
assertion - by
parading - of
rights to this
territory are
even newer...
These battles
continue over
equal rights to
publle space...
One symbolic curbside barricade, and one
bored, roly-poly cop, separated the
hecklers from the heckled.
This sole whi te woodenbarricade made
me think about the social meanings of
space. Anthropologists are interested in
the ways in which people spatially
organize their societies. Anthropologist
Edward Hall c.alled this study Of the
meaning and use of space "proxemics."
He investigated how we communicate
nonverbally by arranging ourselves and
our possessions in various spatial poses.
Parades, for example, are fascinating ritual
events. People’s organized movement
through space sends important messages.
It is no surprise that governments get
nervous at parades and do their best to
regulate and control these.
Parades reveal the existence of
communities with at least enough unity
andpurpose tomarch together. Andgroup
unity-and purpose may threaten powersthat-
be. Marches across a landscape also
assert fights to that territory. Parades,
although symbolic, are serious political
events in that they display claims to place.
In Northern Ireland, competing
Catholics and Protestants parade through
each other’s neighborhoods sparking
violence and death. Closer to home, the
circumnavigation of the University of
Oklahoma’s football field by that Sooner
Schooner after every touchdown is a
similar sort of ritual claim to place. Like
small town Fourth of July parades
everywhere, this movement symbolically
displays people’s rights to occupy territory
- land claims that, in Oklahoma, are still
a little uneasy in that they are often less
than a century old.
The emergence of "Gay space" and the
assertion ~- by parading- of rights to this
territory are even newer. Until recently,
few Gay spaces existed. And where they
did - Gay bars, bookstores, beaches, and
the like - people still had continually to
protect themfrom invasionandregulation
by saaightpolitical authority. These battles
continue overequal rights to public space,
or room on library shelves, or signage on
Peoria Avenue in Tulsa.
That white barricade on Long Beach’s
Ocean Avenue separated two territories
and two claims. In the street, Gays and
Lesbians asserted theirunified community
and their claims to occupy Long Beach.
Behind the barricade in the vacant lot, the
heterosexual hecklers contested theseGay
claims, struggling to reassert their own
control over the territory. Although the
barricade kept their bodies out
of the Gay street, they ydled
and preached - casting their
voices up into the air above the
avenue to compete with those
of the marchers.
Straight attempts to regain
control by limiting and
regulating Gay space, for the
moment at least, have
weakened. Gay space is
expanding. ".Gay ghettos"l~.ve
grown up rn every major
Americancity. Publishers such
as Damronand Spartacus make
money by providing
guidebooks to Gay spaces
around the world. Gay pride
marches down city streets are
increasingly visible ritual
events. These parades show
off the Gay community and assert its
; rights to occupy local territory. The tables
: even, here and there, have turned. Some
¯ denizens ofSanFrancisco’s Castro District
; now complain that their neighborhood is
," attracting too many straight residents and
: businesses. Theydemand that cityplanners
¯ pass regulations to keep troublesome
heterosexuals out of the Gay ghetto.
:/ Some paraders marched along the
: avenueholding hands, as didmany couples
also on the green near downtown Long
: Beach where the pride celebration was
: headquartered.
¯ Hand-holding is another powerful
: proxemic message about sexual identity
: and love. My friend Devre observed that
: he had once felt uncomfortable holding
¯ men’s hands in public. Now he demands
-" more Gay space. He wants to live in a
; place where he can hold his partner’s
: hand.
¯ The"gaying"ofpublic space, however,
: can bring violent response from those
: desperate to protect heterosexual control
of the landscape. But a passing parade at
!easttemporarily Gays’ space. I hold hands
mpart of the city where otherwise I might
have second thoughts. I look across that
barricade to another place which is no
longer mine. On my side, though, I am
holding a boyfriend’s hand.
: of The Journal Of The Gay And Lesbian
¯ MedicalAssociationandco-editorofThe
¯ Lesbian Health Book. She teaches at
Legacy Portland Hospital and is amember
; of the Lesbian Health Research Institute.
: Esther Rothblum is Professor of
¯ Psychology at the University of Vermont
." and Editor of The Journal of Lesbian
¯ Studies. She can bereachedatJohn Dewey
¯ Hall, University of Vermont, Burlington,
¯ VT, email: esther.rothblum@uvm.edu.
.we should report these doctors to the
insurance company or the HMO." Dr.
Whitehas found that Lesbians happy with
their health care tend to have high oelfesteem
and a sense that quality health care
is their right. She hopes to teach other
Lesbians that this is their right as well.
Dr. JocelynWhitepractices as ageneral
internist in Portland, Oregon. Sheis editor
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As part of its ongoing
commitment to the Gay & Lesbian
Adult Communities,
Coors Brewing Company
of Oklahoma applauds
Tulsa Pride 99
Prideful Past... Powerful Future!
and welcomes Grand
Marshall United States
Congressman Barney Frank

Original Format

newspaper
periodical

Files

Collection

Citation

Tulsa Family News, “Tulsa Family News, June 1999; Volume 6, Issue 6,” OKEQ History Project, accessed April 23, 2021, https://history.okeq.org/items/show/588.