Honoring those passed

North Carolina News Notes

Charlotte

Honoring those passed
CHARLOTTE — The Charlotte Gender Alliance, in conjunction with the LGBT Community Center, held a Transgender Day of Remembrance Program on Nov. 20 at the Center. Speakers addressed hate crimes against the transgender community.

Featured guest speaker was Elke Kennedy, founder of Sean’s Last Wish and mother of slain Greenville college student Sean Kennedy.

After the program, a candlelight vigil took place outside with a bell which tolled as the name of each of those slain brothers and sisters was read.

Talent sought
CONCORD — Diversity Den Café, slated to open on or about Dec. 6 at 160A Concord Common Suite D1, is currently booking artists to perform at the café.

Suggested themed nights include: Monday, open; Tuesday, open mic for poets; Wednesday, musical/instrumental artists; Thursday, comedians; Friday, open; Saturday, musical/instrumental artists; and Sunday, spiritual.

Owner Joyce St. Cyr is requesting that interested parties notify her what days one is available beginning Dec. 15. Acts will be posted on the Café’s website calendar and in the monthly newsletter.
For more information, email info@diversityden.com or visit www.diversityden.com.

Fa, la, la, la, la
CHARLOTTE — One Voice Chorus holiday concerts, Depth of Winter, will be held on Dec. 5 and 6 at 7:30 p.m. at Unitarian Universalist Church of Charlotte, 234 N. Sharon Amity Rd.

Tickets are $20 and are sold at the One Voice website at www.onevoicechorus.com or at White Rabbit, 920 Central Ave., and Paper Skyscraper, 330 East Blvd.

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At press time, volunteers were being sought to assist with ushering, raffle/drawing, ticketing/will-call, coat checking, refreshments and backstage. Receptions will be held prior to, during and after the performance. Select one or all three. Volunteers are given the opportunity to see the show at no charge.

To lend a hand, email One Voice Vice President Tom Im at thomashim@hotmail.com.

He’s singing ho-ho-ho
CHARLOTTE — The Gay Men’s Chorus of Charlotte will hold its holiday concert, Winter White, on Dec. 19 and 20 at 8:04 p.m. at St. Martin’s Episcopal Church, 1510 E. 7th St.

Tickets are $10 in advance or $12 at the door. They may be purchased online at www.gmccharlotte.org or at Paper Skyscraper, 330 East Blvd. or at White Rabbit, 920 Central Ave.

Triangle

‘Milk’ premier benefit slated
RALEIGH — “Milk,” the upcoming movie about Harvey Milk, will premiere on Dec. 12 at the Rialto Theater, 1620 Glenwood Ave.

A special showing of the film will be held on Dec. 11 at 8 p.m. Tickets are $10 and all proceeds will benefit the LGBT Center of Raleigh.

This cinematic work tells the story of Milk who helped to organize San Francisco’s gay community and became the first openly gay elected official in U.S. history. Unfortunately, his life was cut short tragically because of hate surrounding his rise to a position of power. Both he and Mayor George Moscone were assassinated in 1979 by Supervisor Dan White.

The movie, directed by Gus Van Sant, features Sean Penn as Milk. Among the cast are Emile Hirsch, Josh Brolin, Diego Luna, Victor Garber and others.

For more information, email lgbtcenterofraleigh@gmail.com.

Media features Womble
RALEIGH — In conjunction with World AIDS Day on Dec. 1, the Alliance of AIDS-Carolinas (AAS-C) Deputy Executive Director and Director of Development John Paul Womble was featured on WRAL.com’s highly popular and widely read series, “Ask Anything” on Nov. 25.

The series regularly features notable personalities from across the state, including the Governor, metropolitan mayors, police chiefs, congressmen, school board presidents and subject matter experts from a wide range of topics.

Not only is Womble a key figure with the Alliance and the Triangle community, but he is also a governing member of the Southern AIDS Coalition, a regional organization that stretches from Texas to the Atlantic and from West Virginia to Florida. Evelyn Foust, head of the North Carolina Communicable Disease Branch, and Jacquelyn Clymore, executive director for the AAS-C, are also governing members of the Coalition.

In other news, AAS-C is accepting $25 gift card contributions on or before Dec. 3 for its holiday party for its clients to be held at its Wake County housing facility, Under One Roof. Cards may be dropped off at Under One Roof, 23 Sunnybrook Rd., Suite 191, or the Administrative Offices, 324 S. Harrington St.

For more information, call Claire LaSee at 919-212-9453.

Red Ribbon AIDS Awareness license plate applications are being accepted by N.C.’s Department of Motor Vehicles. Once 300 requests are received the state will begin production. Regular plates are $25 and personalized ones are $55. To obtain an application, visit the AAS-C website at www.aas-c.org.

Graffiti results in campus action
RALEIGH — Following the Nov. 5 election, students and staff at North Carolina State University (NCSU) woke up to find racist and threatening messages targeting President-elect Barack Obama on the campus’ Free Expression Tunnel.

A hallmark of the campus since the 1960s, the Free Expression Tunnel has been described as the campus’ way of combating graffiti.

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The spray-painted messages included phrases “Shoot Obama,” “KKK” and “kill that n—-”, among others.

Four students have admitted to the graffiti, but the U.S. Secret Service and campus police deemed there was no immediate physical threat to Obama. The students have not been criminally charged but might face disciplinary action under the school’s student conduct code. The students’ identities have not been released; campus police cited privacy laws. The tunnel was also painted white to remove any and all derogatory remarks.

On Nov. 7, a rally of 500 students gathered to protest the graffiti. The events were covered by local news outlets including an ABC TV affiliate and Raleigh’s News & Observer.

The university’s Multicultural Student Affairs department invited students, faculty and staff for a campus-wide moment of prayer on Nov. 13 which sought to be a catalyst for healing. A brief program was held at the Court of Carolinas. Local ministers were asked to join in and facilitate prayer, encouragement as well as comfort.

Subsequently, the NCSU Student Senate voted to adopt Resolution 36, Free Expression Tunnel Response Act on Nov. 19.

The resolution is reprinted, in part, at the end of this column.

The resolution was signed by Student Senate President T. Greg Doucette and Student Body President Jay Dawkins.

Statewide

Round two: take a stand
STATEWIDE — The worldwide media attention surrounding the massive grassroots efforts for LGBT rights was overwhelming, including major efforts in the Carolinas during the recent Join the Impact rallies and demonstrations held on Nov. 15.

Because of the huge successes experienced across the globe, another initiative has been planned for Dec. 10. A Day Without A Gay encourages members of the LGBT community and their allies to simply call in “gay” and not sick for the day and donate one’s time to service. The results would show how the loss of this workforce demographic can impact the overall day-to-day functioning of companies and more, while helping to share the love in deserving areas. The day was chosen because it is also International Human Rights Day.

Promoters suggest that it is time to show how tragic it would be for America and the world to have a day without gays. It would be a day without love.

This historic stance against hatred can be accomplished by donating love to a variety of different causes.

Individuals can still be fired for simply being gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender (in 30 states at this time). For those who want to participate there are alternate methods of joining the day’s stand and still make a difference. Spread the word by joining the group’s Facebook website or invite friends through other social networking methods. Send emails or make phone calls. Also contact the local media. Help seek out and post volunteer opportunities in one’s area. The JoinTheImpact site has a list of where to start. Educate others bout the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA). Lastly, contact state representatives and senators to voice support of ENDA.

To find out more on how to join the fight the H8 with love, visit daywithoutagay.org.

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email: editor@q-notes.com or fax 704-531-1361.

Capsule of Resolution 36

“A summary of purpose is described as an act to: condemn the actions of the four students who wrote the remarks on the Free Expression tunnel on Nov. 5th, support a punishment including education on diversity, modify the University’s unlawful harassment policies to include language that would explicitly address whether they be verbal, written or physical, which incite violence or otherwise create a hostile campus environment toward individuals or university protected groups.”

Briefly, it includes “WHEREAS, student leaders agreed in a Student Leaders’ Response to Hate Speech that “We live by the values of equity for all people and mutual respect for every member of the human race regardless of race, color, religion, creed, gender, sexual orientation and expression, national origin, age, disability, or veteran status”; … and, WHEREAS, the events … also indicated a general lack of visibility and clarity of the harassment policies, and left it questionable for whether or not these actions would fall under the current Unlawful Harassment Policy Statement (REG04.25.04); and, WHEREAS, the University’s Unlawful Harassment Policy Statement (REG04.25.04 §1.1) declares that “Harassment based upon race, color, religion, creed, sex, national origin, age, disability or veteran status is a form of discrimination in violation of federal and state law and North Carolina State University policy, and will not be tolerated,” and it also declares that, “It is the internal policy of North Carolina State University to prohibit harassment on the basis of sexual orientation”; and, WHEREAS, the University defines harassment in REG04.25.04 §2.1 as “…unwelcome conduct, based upon race, color, religion, creed, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status or sexual orientation, that is either a condition of working or learning (quid pro quo) or creates a hostile environment”; … be it resolved … RESOLVED, that we encourage the University’s punishment and education of these individuals to include cross cultural community service, counseling, and diversity education; and be it further RESOLVED, that the University’s Unlawful Harassment Policy be modified to adequately address future incidents which violently target individuals or University protected groups; and be it further, RESOLVED, that the North Carolina State University Student Senate, on behalf of the Student Body, strongly urges the NC State Campus Culture Task Force Committee to reform the current Unlawful Harassment Policy Statement, and any other applicable University regulations, to include language that would explicitly address acts — whether they be verbal, written, or physical — which incite violence or otherwise create a hostile campus environment toward individuals or University protected groups.”

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Posted by Lainey Millen

Lainey Millen is QNotes' associate editor, special assignments writer, N.C. and U.S./World News Notes columnist and production director. She can be reached at specialassignments@goqnotes.com and 704-531-9988, x205.