April 16-29 . 2011 qnotes
qnotes April 16-29 . 2011
April 16-29, 2011
Vol 25 No 25
news & features
6 News Notes: Regional Briefs
8 Walks to remember
9 Charlotte city attorney to retire
9 Amendment filed in state House
11 Judy Garland at Carnegie Hall
12 Pride Charlotte moves Uptown
12 Let me see y’all one, two step
13 Drag Rag
16 Tell Trinity
17 Out in the Stars
18 On Being a Gay Parent
19 Q events calendar
opinions & views
4 Editor’s Note
5 General Gayety
contributors this issue
Leah Cagle, Matt Comer, Kevin Grooms/Miss Della,
Charlene Lichtenstein, Lainey Millen, Leslie
Robinson, David Stout, Jim Thompson, Trinity,
Sign up for our weekly email
newsletter at goqnotes.com.
Graphic Design by Lainey Millen
Pride Publishing & Typesetting, Inc.
P.O. Box 221841, Charlotte, NC 28222, ph 704.531.9988 fx 704.531.1361
Publisher: Jim Yarbrough
Sales: x206 firstname.lastname@example.org
Nat’l Sales: Rivendell Media, 212.242.6863
Editor: Matt Comer, x202 email@example.com
Assoc. Ed.: David Stout, x210 firstname.lastname@example.org
Assoc. Ed., A&E: Leah Cagle, x202 email@example.com
Production: Lainey Millen, x209 firstname.lastname@example.org
Printed on recycled paper.
Material in qnotes is copyrighted by Pride Publishing & Typesetting © 2011 and may not be reproduced in any manner without
written consent of the editor or publisher. Advertisers assume full responsibility — and therefore, all liability — for securing
reprint permission for copyrighted text, photographs and illustrations or trademarks published in their ads. The sexual orientation
of advertisers, photographers, writers, cartoonists we publish is neither inferred nor implied. The appearance of names
or photographs does not indicate the subject’s sexual orientation. qnotes nor its publisher assumes liability for typographical
error or omission, beyond offering to run a correction. Official editorial positions are expressed in staff editorials and editorial
notations and are determined by editorial staff. The opinions of contributing writers and guest columnists do not necessarily
represent the opinions of qnotes or its staff. qnotes accepts unsolicited editorial, but cannot take responsibility for its return.
Editor reserves the right to accept and reject material as well as edit for clarity, brevity.
April 16-29 . 2011 qnotes
by matt comer
McCarley’s sad legacy
a reminder of inequality
There is one thing for which City Attorney
Mac McCarley will be remembered by many
LGBT and straight ally Charlotteans when
he departs his job at the end of the year.
(See story, “Charlotte city attorney to retire,”
on page 9.) Though I have no idea how he
personally feels about LGBT people — and,
therefore, cannot call him a bigot — one thing
is clear: McCarley’s actions and legal opinions
have significantly harmed our community
and prevented any substantial and concrete
forward movement on LGBT inclusion in city
policies and ordinances. In short, McCarley is
an enabler of continued bigotry, discrimination
McCarley’s stubborn hardheadedness in
the face of LGBT progress — or lack thereof
— in the Queen City is a blemish on what
might otherwise be a stunning legacy after his
34 years of public service in North Carolina.
It’s like beating a dead horse, you know. It
can be very tiring writing about the same old,
same old lack of progress here in Charlotte.
More than two decades after our state capital
and it’s neighboring city took steps toward
LGBT inclusion, Charlotte remains dead last.
Obviously, gay and transgender citizens,
voters and taxpayers don’t rank high on
Queen City politicians’ list of concerns. We
never have. I’m starting to think we never will.
All this frustration can be blamed primarily
on just a handful of people: city council members,
McCarley and Mayors Pat McCrory and
We’ve already ousted McCrory. McCarley
is leaving at the end of the year. Perhaps it is
time for a change in Democratic leadership on
the council this year, as well.
Come November, the city will again elect
a new council and mayor. And, nearly two
years after LGBT Charlotteans were promised
change by Foxx and other current city
officials, we continue to wait. Will we see
progress between now and November I hope
so. If we don’t, at least I know which candidates
won’t be receiving my vote.
There’s nothing we can do about
McCarley. The damage he’s caused is done.
His legacy, however, can serve as a reminder
of our continued inequality in this city. We can
use it to inspire movement and change, if only
we care enough to make that commitment.
As city election campaigns ramp up in
the following weeks and months, don’t be
afraid to ask tough questions of incumbents
and challengers. Reserve your endorsements
and contributions for folks who make bold
and public commitments for equality. Strip
your support away from those who, lacking
political courage and conviction, failed to take
action when they had the opportunity. This,
my friends, is democracy at it’s finest. We can
make a difference.
Fortunately, McCarley will no longer be
waiting in the wings ready to smack down any
opening at progress. With the right council
and mayor, Charlotte won’t have to be dead
last any longer.
‘Sex in the park’ critics
need primer on logic
In our print edition on April 2, qnotes published
an investigative commentary exploring
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department
(CMPD) records on charges and arrests for
soliciting a crime against nature. (See “Sex in
the park” at goqnotes.com/10621.)
The inquiry was prompted by local news
station WBTV’s outlandish and sensationalistic
tabloidism, in which they took to a local
Charlotte park to stir prejudice and fear while
armed only with anonymous postings from a
hook-up website. Unlike WBTV’s sorry excuse
for ethical journalism, qnotes actually took the
time to review dozens of records and interview
police officials before publishing our story.
Our results were astonishing: Of 325
charges for soliciting a crime against nature,
only 15 arrests were made as the result of
men who have sex with men (MSM) in a
public place like a park or the airport overlook.
What’s more, the bulk of charges and arrests
were linked to narcotics and heterosexual
prostitution activity. And, of the 15 arrests of
MSM, none occurred in James Boyce Park,
which WBTV claimed had a serious problem.
Despite all our efforts at engaging in real
journalism, we still had our critics. Steve
Parker, who publishes Carolina Christian
News and who identifies as “ex-gay,” took to
qnotes’ comment threads. He cited our interview
with CMPD Vice & Narcotics Unit Leader
Sgt. B.D. Hollar and concluded that low arrest
numbers indicated a lack of enforcement
rather than a lack of a real problem.
“In other words, the reasons there haven’t
been a great deal of arrests is because the
police have not been enforcing these laws
in the parks, choosing instead to focus on
prostitution,” Parker wrote. “Anyone with
any knowledge of the subject is well aware
that there are a great many men seeking sex
with one another at rest areas, public rest
rooms, and, yes, public parks. To deny this is
Parker added, “…to act as though it
doesn’t exist is demonstrates the same lack
of journalistic integrity of which the author
Parker conveniently chose to ignore
several other portions of Hollar’s interview,
specifically Hollar’s statement that his unit
is primarily complaint-driven. In fact, Hollar
specifically mentioned Kilborne Park as a
place where police had recently responded to
several complaints. Arrest records corroborate
Despite Parker’s claims and taking into
account Hollar’s full statements would it not
stand to reason that complaint-driven law enforcement
might receive complaints about an
“alleged” large amount of open sexual activity
in James Boyce Park Would it not stand to
reason that area police would act upon such
complaints And, would it not also mean that
such complaints might turn up at least one
arrest in the park in question during more than
a year’s time
Yet, there were no significant complaints.
No recorded arrests. Even after WBTV’s and
qnotes’ coverage there’s been just one call
for service for prostitution-related loitering
in the James Boyce Park area. Even that one
complaint yielded no arrest.
Do the math and you come to a solid conclusion.
There is no substantial problem with
MSM sexual activity in Mecklenburg County’s
Unlike Parker, I won’t go so far as to
accuse him of a lack of integrity. I’ll simply
assume he wasn’t intending to twist facts
into a dishonest conclusion; though, it is clear
that someone either didn’t take basic-level
philosophy lessons in high school or failed
In the face of such strong evidence and
logic, Parker would be wise to remember:
“The truth shall set you free.” : :
Letters to the editor and comments from goqnotes.com.
Web comments are not edited for grammar or punctuation.
In response to the Matt Comer’s April 2
column, “Marching backward to the beat
of a despotic drum” (goqnotes.com/10604),
And on another domestic front, the dominionists
in Iowa removed three state supreme
court justices to punish them for upholding
principles of equal protection. Don’t these
cretins realize that once you hamstring equal
protection principles in application to one
group, you hurt protections for yourselves
We are all minorities in someone else’s
— Marco Luxe, web, April 2
You sound like a lunatic. This article represents
one of the many reasons why the vast
majority of Americans oppose gay marriage
(and yes, they do, despite the bogus polling a
few firms have decided to release). A radical
conservative, the opposite from you, could just
as easily create a nightmare fantasy scenario
describing what may happen if gay marriage
or homosexuality in general were to become
more accepted in our society. Of course,
that would be silly, just like all the nonsense
that you wrote. ... I am gay, and I oppose gay
marriage, as do many normal gay people. I will
work hard to have my point of view heard here
in NC, so that we can finally pass a marriage
amendment here. I grew up in Massachusetts
and really don’t feel like seeing my new home
state slide downhill as well.
— Steve, web, April 2
@Steve — There are most certainly
radical theocratic forces in North Carolina
actively seeking to marginalize the LGBT citizens
of North Carolina and the current limited
rights of LGBT North Carolinians.
For evidence, visit christianactionleague.
org or ncfpc.org or returnamerica.org.
These groups (Christian Action League,
NC Family Policy Council, Return America)
lobby the legislature, file lawsuits, and produce
“educational” materials to further their
These are simple facts evident and
trumpeted on their own websites. It is not
hyperbole to note their actions and self-proclaimed
— Appellation, web, April 3
These rates only cover a portion of our true cost,
however, our goal is to serve our community
Mailed 1st class from Charlotte, NC, in sealed envelope.
Subscription Rates: ☐ 1 yr - 26 issues = $48 ☐ 1/2 yr - 13 issues = $34
Mail to: P.O. Box 221841, Charlotte, NC 28222
card – check one: ☐ mastercard ☐ visa ☐ discover ☐ american express
Meeting Date: Tuesday, April 19, 2011
Program: J.D. Lewis and “Twelve in Twelve”
A philanthropic trip around the world with his two sons
Lesbian & Gay Community Center
820 Hamilton St.
Time: Cash Bar Social/Heavy Hor d’oeuvres @ 5:30 pm
Program starts @ 6:45 pm
To Reserve: Call 704.565.5075
or email email@example.com
for more information
or pay online via PayPal at
qnotes April 16-29 . 2011
We Americans like to express ourselves
with our chests.
I’m not speaking of Jane Russell or even
I’m talking about our proclivity for wearing
T-shirts with slogans on them. Americans
have been human billboards for decades.
The slogans on T-shirts celebrate, advocate,
advertise, unify, decry and polarize.
Americans have lots to say — on shirts made
So, it makes sense that one part of the
gay story in this country is being played out in
cotton/polyester blends. Over the past years
high school students and younger kids on
both sides of the gay issue have been wearing
their hearts on their sleeves. And, getting
sent home for it.
The latest shirt-skirmish is still unfolding
at a middle school in DeSoto Parish in
Louisiana. Student Dawn Henderson wore
a shirt reading “Some Kids are Gay. That’s
OK.” Principal Keith Simmons ordered her to
change her shirt or go home.
It occurs to me that any kid aiming to get
out of a test at school doesn’t need to fake
have ruled consistently
students’ rights to free
speech and expression
while at school extend to
their wardrobe. LGBT students
have benefited from
these rulings, but should
other students be allowed
to wear clothing with anti-
by leslie robinson :: qnotes contributor
The fabric of our lives
the flu — just don a controversial T-shirt and
in minutes you’ll be back home watching
According to the ACLU of Louisiana,
DeSoto school officials claimed the shirt
was “distracting.” The ACLU sent Simmons
a letter arguing that Henderson has a First
Amendment right to express her opinion
across her chest, as long as the school allows
clothing with slogans.
If the school decides to forbid clothing
with slogans, it might be hearing from Nike.
In another T-shirt to-do, which actually
began back in 2006, the 7th U.S. Circuit Court
of Appeals ruled a month ago that students
at Neuqua Valley High School in Naperville,
Ill., could wear T-shirts saying “Be Happy,
The court maintained a “school that
permits advocacy of the rights of homosexual
students cannot be allowed to stifle criticism
May the judges’ T-shirts ride up with
On Nov. 2 last year, Election Day, senior
Kate Cohn made a pro-gay statement at
Falcon High School in Peyton, Colo., by wearing
a shirt reading “Marriage is so gay.” She
said Principal Mark Carara told her the shirt
was offensive and violated the dress code
forbidding clothing potentially disruptive to
the academic environment.
I’m guessing that means fishnets
are out. At least for guys.
Cohn’s mom said Carara later
likened the T-shirt to apparel promoting
alcohol or drug use.
That increasingly well-known
arbiter of fashion, the ACLU, sent
a letter to school administrators
demanding Cohn and others be
allowed to wear the shirt and the two-week
ban was lifted.
Perfect. Two weeks gave her enough time
to wash her shirt and make it all pretty for its
I can say with certainty that T-shirt tizzies
haven’t been limited to the younger set or the
recent past. Back in the mid-’90s I covered
a protest by adults in Hampton Beach, N.H.,
outside a T-shirt store that peddled a couple
of anti-gay shirts. One read “Silly faggot,
dicks are for chicks” and the other said “Aids
Kills Fags” or something of that ilk.
What I remember best is a teenager pointedly
buying one of those shirts during the protest,
then sheepishly returning it afterwards
because he needed the money to get home.
The other day I spotted a different T-shirt
twist to the American LGBT story. Openly gay
veteran political consultant Fred Karger, in
Washington, D.C., to file for the Republican
presidential nomination, met with the
Republican National Committee chairman.
Karger — completely unknown to the
public and, to repeat, openly gay — told “Roll
Call,” “We had a great meeting. I gave him
one of my T-shirts.”
I’d like to know what slogan is on that
shirt. Maybe “Karger 2012: No, Really.” : :
LesRobinson@aol.com . generalgayety.com
See the options and vote:
April 16-29 . 2011 qnotes
from the carolinas, nation and world
compiled by Lainey Millen :: firstname.lastname@example.org | David Stout :: email@example.com | Matt Comer :: firstname.lastname@example.org
Advocacy group on pulse of
RALEIGH — This year, amidst the rise
of a Republican-led legislature which has
already brought an anti-LGBT constitutional
amendment to the floor of both
chambers, Equality North Carolina (ENC)
has it’s plate full.
Want to lend your support to help
thwart anti-gay legislators’ designs Then
take action with ENC by joining their email
and postcard campaigns to convince
lawmakers to work on the side of fairness
and equality. At press time, over 10,000
Equality in Action cards has been sent out
to a variety of people to help educate them about
how bad the anti-LGBT amendment is to North
Carolina’s LGBT citizens. All across the state,
there have been stops on the Equality in Action
Tour. These local town hall meetings help to raise
funds for initiatives, educate participants on hot
topics and energize those who want to become
engaged in the valuable work of ENC.
Daytime office volunteers are still urgently
needed to mobilize the postcard campaign.
Future nighttime volunteer opportunities are
also available. Contact organizer Josh Wynne at
email@example.com or 919-829-0343, ext. 113 to
Additionally, there’s no time like a party, and
ENC is encouraging everyone to host a fundraising
party to help collect the necessary war chest
that is needed to defend it’s initiatives. For details
on how to throw one of these fun-filled events,
TOY seeks volunteers
CHARLOTTE — Time Out Youth is currently
searching for volunteers to staff its 20th
Anniversary Gala Weekend, June 10-13.
The highlight of the weekend is a gala
fundraiser, an evening honoring what Time
Out Youth has done and continues to do to
strengthen the community.
On June 11, Glam, an alternative prom for
youth, is slated as part of the festivities.
Sponsors, either individual or corporate,
are also needed for their platinum event.
The organization is also co-sponsoring
the premier of “Rent” on May 12 at Theatre
Charlotte. Appetizers, dessert and a silent
auction are being planned. Volunteers are
needed between 5:30-10 p.m. Complimentary
tickets for another show will be made available
to those who serve.
For more information, email volunteers@
timeoutyouth.org or visit timeoutyouth.org.
Couples wed in D.C.
CHARLOTTE — Seven couples spent the
weekend of April 1-3 in the nation’s capital
while they tied the knot with family, friends
and clergy as witnesses.
The couples were forced to travel to D.C.
for their ceremonies because North Carolina
does not recognize marriages by same-sex
couples. An anti-gay constitutional amendment
proposed in the state Senate would
qnotes April 16-29 . 2011
ENC also encourages everyone to support
the companies who lend their hand to champion
equality in the workplace. It is currently
seeking companies who are willing to take a
stand against the anti-LGBT amendment. North
Carolina has a number of companies who score
high on the Human Rights Campaign Corporate
Index. But, that might not be enough. Employers
who want to get on board should contact Kay
Flaminio at firstname.lastname@example.org. Whether one
can take a public stand or help ENC communicate
with key legislative leaders, help them take
bottom line strategic action that will make a real
difference for protecting the dignity of North
Carolina’s LGBT community.
For more information, to volunteer or to make
a contribution, visit equalitync.org.
make such a ban more stringent, banning
recognition of “domestic legal union” by
same-sex couples, including civil unions, marriages
and domestic partnerships.
The ceremonies were officiated by Rev.
Nancy Ellett Allison of Holy Covenant United
Church of Christ, Rabbi Judy Schindler of
Temple Beth El and Rev. Robin Tanner of
Piedmont Unitarian Universalist Church.
Several other local congregations
supported the initiative, including Pilgrim
Congregational UCC of Charlotte, Unitarian
Universalist Church of Charlotte, Unity
Fellowship Church Charlotte and Wedgewood
Baptist Church. Sponsoring organizations included
RAIN, Time Out Youth, attorney Connie
J. Vetter and the Human Rights Campaign.
On April 4, a special “Celebratory
Champagne Toast” was held. During the
event, Rev.Jay Leach, along with Rev. Dr.
Chris Ayers and others, blessed and toasted
the couples upon their return.
Presbytery says no
ELIZABETHTOWN — The eastern North
Carolina governing body of the Presbyterian
Church (U.S.A.) gave a thumbs down to a proposal
from the national church body to allow
gay and lesbian clergy.
The Presbytery of Coastal Carolina voted
against the proposal by a nearly 2-to-1 margin.
The church’s current Book of Order states
that its clergy must be in a “faithful marriage
between a man and a woman or be
chaste.” References to sexual orientation
would have been removed if it
All 173 presbyteries across the
U.S. will have to come to a consensus
by May. The approval of a total
of 87 presbyteries are needed for the
proposal to take effect.
New center improves
GREENSBORO — Moses Cone
Health System has partnered with
three agencies, including Triad
Health Project, to open their new
Regional Center for Infectious
Disease. The facility, which opened
April 4 across the street from
Moses H. Cone Memorial Hospital,
promises to greatly improve care
for people with HIV, AIDS and other
By partnering with other HIV/
AIDS providers, it will offer multiple
services for patients in one convenient
The Center has a nurse practitioner
and also has space for two case
managers from Triad Health Project
and one mental health counselor
from Family Service of the Piedmont.
Those two community agencies
worked with The Infectious Disease
Clinic in the past when it was
located in the basement of Moses
The long-term vision to develop the center
came from Dr. John Campbell, an infectious
disease physician with the Internal Medicine
Training Program at Moses Cone Health
The Cone Health Foundation, Central
Carolina Health Network and the University of
North Carolina are providing funds including
federal funding totaling $1,237,468, a total 55
percent of the Center’s budget.
— compiled from release
Public forum held
CARRBORO — Students and youth
gathered at Open Eye Cafe, 101 S. Greensboro
St., at an open mic Speak Out after the Day of
Silence. It was sponsored by iNSIDEoUT.
On the previous day, countless participants
across the nation refrained from
speaking for a full day to raise awareness
and express their solidarity with LGBT youth
who remain muted and isolated. Every day,
they face disproportionate rates of harassment
and bullying in schools, as well as an
increased tendency for self-injury, suicide and
depression. The Speak Out was an opportunity
for students to share their stories with an
audience in public about their experiences
observing the Day of Silence and being lesbian,
gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning
or allied in school, more generally.
The event is a project of the Gay, Lesbian,
Straight Education Network (GLSEN). In 2005,
GLSEN’s National School Climate Survey
found that more than 64 percent of LGBT
students reported verbal, sexual or physical
harassment at school and 29 percent reported
missing at least a day of school in the past
month out of fear for their personal safety.
Discrimination and harassment is widely
overlooked by school administrators due in
part to the lack of effective bullying policies,
said iNSIDEoUT representative Amy Glaser.
The School Violence Prevention Act, which
was passed in 2009, is supposed to help
protect youth against bullying. Equality North
Carolina has prepared a kit to assist systems
in the implementation of the law.
For more information, visit iNSIDEoUT180.
org and equalitync.org.
Conference tackles bullying
RALEIGH — North Carolina State
University held a statewide conference on
March 29 to assist educators and students in
dealing with harassment in elementary and
Attendees focused on finding ways
to implement the state’s School Violence
Prevention Act throughout an entire school.
Also, intervention and parental support methodology
WRAL reported, “Justine Hollingshead,
director of N.C. State’s Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual
and Transgender Center, said school administrators,
teachers and counselors need to take
the initiative to stop bullying.”
Worsening the issue is the “advent of
Morgan Hayes, a seventh grade student
at North Garner Middle School, attended the
event for a Girl Scout project with a friend.
She is spearheading an effort to have her
school become a no-bully zone.
Exec supports gay rights
RALEIGH — Workplace Options President
Alan King says that “being gay doesn’t define
my ability to do my job well. I don’t wrap
myself in a rainbow flag,” the News and
His company is the lead sponsor of
OutRaleigh, which is taking place on May
14. And, that is only the tip of the iceberg.
He thinks that this event is just the place to
make a “visible statement in the community
we live…and celebrate diversity…thus being
viewed as a model in the business world.”
Workplace Options is an employee assistance
program company and provides wellness
programs, backup care for children and
elderly parents, diversity training, financial
counseling, mental-health support and more.
It employs 325 people worldwide. Most of
them, 240, work in Raleigh.
They have concern over the Republicancontrolled
General Assembly’s efforts to
restrict gay rights, like the gay marriage ban.
The News and Observer said, “A recent
survey of N.C. workers by Public Policy Polling,
a firm that’s owned by [Workplace Options
CEO] Dean Debnam, showed that about one
in four said they would be uncomfortable if a
co-worker or boss was openly gay.”
“It’s valuable for this region’s gay and
lesbian community to have the support of
businesses and of leaders such as King.…
The fact that Alan is out and rewarded and
supported for being out means so much for
other professionals,” Daire Roebuck, who
serves on the LGBT Center board and is an
Kerry leads on immigration equality
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Sen. John Kerry
(D-MA) led 11 colleagues in an April 6 letter to
Attorney General Eric Holder and Secretary of
Homeland Security Janet Napolitano urging
immigration equality for legally married samesex
couples who are currently discriminated
against under the Defense of Marriage Act.
“We applaud the President’s decision to
no longer defend the Defense of Marriage Act
in federal court,” the senators wrote. “With
DOMA as law, however, we are creating a tier
of second-class families in states that have
authorized same-sex marriage. The same
second-class status is imposed upon marriages
between same-sex partners in which
one spouse is not a U.S. citizen. We urge
you to reconsider this position in light of the
administration’s position that it will no longer
defend DOMA in federal court.”
Rachel B. Tiven, executive director of
Immigration Equality, a national organization
that works to end discrimination in U.S. immigration
law, has also called for a change.
LGBT Health, Part I
WASHINGTON, D.C. — National health
think tank The Institute of Medicine issued a
report March 31 detailing health disparities
between LGBT and non-LGBT Americans
and calling for substantially increased
federal research into the medical concerns
of LGBT people. The report, “The Health of
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender
People: Building a Foundation for Better
Understanding,” is meant to be a wake-up call
for government researchers and policymakers
who have resisted asking LGBT-specific
questions in federal health surveys.
LGBT Health, Part II
WASHINGTON, D.C. — On April 1, the
Department of Health and Human Services announced
a number of steps it was recommending
to President Barack Obama to improve the
health and well-being of LGBT Americans.
The recommendations include prohibiting
workplace bias on the basis of sexual orientation
and gender identity for HHS programs and
employees; increasing the number of federallyfunded
health surveys that collect sexual orientation
and gender identity data; and promoting
health profession training programs to include
LGBT cultural competency curricula.
HHS will take additional steps, integrating
an even stronger component focusing on
LGBT youth in all anti-bullying initiatives, reducing
the barriers encountered by prospective
and current foster and adoptive parents
who are LGBT, and requiring all organizations
serving runaway and homeless youth to be
equipped to serve LGBT youth.
Study: 9 million LGBT Americans
LOS ANGELES, Calif. — The Williams
Institute, a leading think tank dedicated to
the field of sexual orientation and gender
identity-related law and public policy, has
released new research that estimates the size
of the LGBT community in the U.S. Drawing
on information from four recent national and
two state-level population-based surveys, the
analyses suggest that there are more than
8 million American adults who are lesbian,
gay or bisexual, comprising 3.5 percent of the
adult population. There are also nearly 700,000
transgender individuals in the U.S. In total, the
study suggests that approximately 9 million
Americans — roughly the population of New
Jersey — identify as LGBT.
Victory in Ark., Part I
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — The Arkansas
Supreme Court has upheld a lower court ruling
that a law prohibiting adoption by unmarried
couples who live together violates the Arkansas
Constitution. On Nov. 4, 2008, Arkansas voters
approved a statutory ban on adoption and
foster parenting by unmarried individuals cohabiting
with a sexual partner. The April 7 ruling
affirms a Pulaski County circuit judge decision
that Initiated Act I of 2008 intrudes on privacy
rights guaranteed by the Arkansas Constitution.
The victory leaves Mississippi and Utah as the
only states with adoption bans for unmarried
couples, including same-sex couples.
Victory in Ark., Part II
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Advocates for LGBT
youth and education praised Gov. Beebe’s April
1 signing of a comprehensive anti-bullying bill
that enumerates personal characteristics often
targeted for bullying, including race, religion,
sexual orientation and gender identity. The
bill, which also requires educator training, had
overwhelming support from legislators of all
parties and passed unanimously in the state
Senate. Arkansas is the 11th state to pass
an enumerated anti-bullying law. The others
that have such laws are California, Illinois,
Iowa, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, North
Carolina, Oregon, Vermont and Washington.
British HIV rates up sharply
LONDON, U.K. — New Health Protection
Agency figures show that HIV infections
among gay and bisexual men in the U.K. have
risen by 70 percent in the last decade. In
2001, 1,810 men who have sex with men were
diagnosed with the disease. Last year, the
number had risen to 3,080. It is estimated that
there are 30,000 gay and bisexual men living
with HIV in the U.K. today, although one-third
of these are thought to be undiagnosed.
April 16-29 . 2011 qnotes
Walks to remember
Carolina AIDS walks raise awareness, funds during time of need
by Matt Comer :: email@example.com
While it would be difficult to overstate
the importance of AIDS Walk fundraisers in
the battle against HIV and AIDS, the events
themselves couldn’t be much simpler.
Participants solicit donations from family
and friends before gathering together on
event day to walk a pre-determined course
through town. For some Walks, a registration
fee is collected in lieu of pledges. In either
case, all money raised goes to one or more
local AIDS charities.
As in the past several years, this year’s
slew of events across the state will play an
important role in raising both much-needed
funding and awareness for AIDS services
organizations and the crucial role they play
in the health and well-being of their communities.
But, 2011 also holds other important
and symbolic meanings marking the 30th
anniversary of the AIDS Crisis. On June 5.
1981, the Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention (CDC) reported on the first cases
of what would eventually be named Acquired
Immunodeficiency Syndrome, or AIDS. From
five, sick young men in Los Angeles, the
Crisis grew. A lack of government response
in the face of thousands of deaths nationwide
Short walks, long histories
The concept isn’t new or unique to
AIDS fundraising — the CROP Walk to fight
hunger and poverty has successfully used
this charity model since the late ’60s. What is
different, however, is the politically charged
climate from which the AIDS Walk movement
The first AIDS Walk was held in Los
Angeles in 1985 to benefit AIDS Project Los
Angeles. Four years in and with the U.S. death
toll approaching 5,000, the epidemic was still
being treated like a radioactive social issue
rather than a critical health concern.
President Ronald Reagan mentioned the
word “AIDS” in public for the first time in
’85, and then only in response to a reporter’s
questions. Congress’ anemic funding for care
and research showed no signs that lawmakers
considered AIDS a priority issue either.
Among the public, the belief that people
with AIDS could be divided into innocent
victims (hemophiliacs, babies born to infected
mothers) and the deserving (gays, drug users)
was still widespread. Lingering fear about
how the disease could be spread fueled pervasive
ostracism and discrimination against
From this dire environment sprang the
first AIDS Walk, which is significant both for
the fact that it established a means for the
community to raise life-saving aid money that
the government wasn’t providing, as well as
for the courage of the walkers who braved the
stigma associated with AIDS.
Following on the heels of the L.A. walkers
were participants at similar events in New
York and San Francisco. Before long, AIDS
Walks were being organized in cities from
coast to coast, including the Carolinas where
multiple events are held across the region
qnotes April 16-29 . 2011
Last year, North Carolina’s community of
HIV/AIDS patients were hit with devastating
blows. As the state legislature faced looming
budget deficits, officials with the
N.C. Department of Health’s HIV/STD
Prevention and Care Branch announced
enrollment in the state’s AIDS Drug
Assistance Program (ADAP) would
be capped at current levels. Though
low-income HIV/AIDS patients who
were already enrolled would continue to
receive medicines, hundreds were put on
a waiting list that eventually became the
longest in the nation.
Leaders like the Rev. Debbie Warren
of Charlotte’s Regional AIDS Interfaith
Network (RAIN), Addison Ore of
Greensboro’s Triad Health Project and
John Paul Womble of Raleigh’s Alliance
of AIDS Services-Carolina sprang into
action. With the advocacy of state AIDS
and STD director Jacquelyn Clymore,
North Carolina eventually passed a budget
that included restored funds for the
program, though eligibility levels were
Ore says the funding crisis that AIDS
service providers and patients faced last
year is still taking its toll, though potential
future cuts could be worse.
“It’s all up for debate,” she says.
“There are no sacred cows anymore.”
State legislators usually deal with
budgetary matters in their biennial short
session. That’s when last year’s ADAP
funding was restored and passed. But
this year, the state faces a $2.7 billion
deficit — down $1 billion when the
legislature opened this year’s session
in January. That’s spawned efforts to cut
spending and some legislators have put AIDS
funding on the chopping block.
In January, state Rep. Larry Brown, a
Republican who represents portions of eastern
Forsyth County, told The Winston-Salem
Journal that state government shouldn’t be
funding HIV/AIDS treatment for those who
“caused it by the way they live.”
“I’m not opposed to helping a child born
with HIV or something,” Brown told the paper,
“but I don’t condone spending taxpayers’
money to help people living in perverted
Brown’s remarks on HIV/AIDS funding
were quickly condemned by statewide
“These comments are completely unacceptable,”
Ian Palmquist, Equality North
Carolina’s executive director, said in a release
at the time. “Larry Brown is out of touch with
the people of North Carolina, who strongly
support programs to care for the most vulnerable
among us, and he’s out of step with his
Brown had previously caused controversy
after calling gays “queers” and “fruitloops” in
an email to his Republican colleagues.
Such a hostile social agenda concerns
Ore, who is cautious after last November’s
change in legislative leadership.
“I certainly don’t believe someone like
Rep. Larry Brown speaks for the entire
Republican leadership, but I think when someone
speaks like that it’s indicative of a feeling.
That’s very concerning to me.”
Ore’s organization relies on a mix of support
from federal, state and local funding.
“We rely more and more on what we are
able to raise ourselves,” Ore says, noting decreases
in federal grants and flat-lined local
funding. “Individual donations have remained
fairly stable, but we have to keep going back
to the well more often. We’re starting to battle
Messages of hope, strains
Nathan Smith, RAIN’s director of development
and marketing, says his organization
has also felt the brunt of meager times.
“We’ve felt it like any other non-profit,”
he says, noting his group had to layoff some
workers when the economy initially nosedived
in Charlotte a few years ago.
But Smith is quick to point out that financial
hardships are standing in stark contrast
to the good that often comes out of fundraisers
like RAIN’s upcoming AIDS Walk Charlotte
on May 7.
AIDS Walk Charlotte is RAIN’s largest
fundraiser each year. It’s also one of the
group’s largest public advocacy and awareness-building
“We truly push and want people to understand
[this issue],” he says. “That’s why we
have no registration fee and we encourage
middle and high school and college students
who can’t raise money to come out and support
us. It’s about showing the community that
this is still an issue for us.”
Ore’s Triad Health Project holds their
Winter Walk for AIDS each December. Ore
says she’s always very intentional about
stressing awareness along with fundraising.
“That’s often when we’ll get a call from local
people,” she says. “It’s a great opportunity
to get the word out in front of people.”
Triad Health Project is also celebrating
their 25th anniversary this year, an occasion
that has garnered the group more local press
Participants in RAIN’s AIDS Walk Charlotte walk to remember a friend.
and attention to the important issues that’s
kept them running.
RAIN’s AIDS Walk Charlotte celebrates
15 years in May. Like Triad Health Project,
RAIN has felt the pinch but feels events like
their Walk help to close the gaps and create
opportunities for change.
At the end of the day, Smith says RAIN
isn’t going anywhere.
“We’ve been here for 19 years, and we’re
going to be here until the Crisis is over,” he
says. : :
— David Stout contributed
Walks across Carolina
May 7 • Charlotte
AIDS Walk Charlotte
One of the largest AIDS fundraisers
across the Carolinas, AIDS Walk
Charlotte raises funds for the Regional
AIDS Interfaith Network. To register
walk teams or learn more, visit aidswalkcharlotte.org.
May 21 • Raleigh
Alliance of AIDS Services-Carolina
hosts their annual walk and bicycle ride
in downtown Raleigh. Register walkers,
learn more about the ride and more at
December • Greensboro
Winter Walk for AIDS
Triad Health Project takes to the
streets of downtown Greensboro’s
Aycock Neighborhood. For more information,
For more events see our Q Events
Calendar on page 19.
Charlotte city attorney to retire
Mac McCarley’s legal opinions blocked LGBT progress in Charlotte
by Matt Comer :: firstname.lastname@example.org
Charlotte City Attorney Mac McCarley told
the city council in closed session on April 4
that he plans to retire at the end of December,
according to The Charlotte Observer. McCarley,
whose position is hired by the city council, has
served as city attorney since 1994. His legal
opinions have often been the source of frustration
for LGBT community members.
In 2009, the city was sued by a fired,
transgender employee. At the time, McCarley
said the city would not take responsibility in
“Transgendered individuals do not have
any rights under the federal employment
discrimination laws,” he said.
The City of Charlotte does not have
employment ordinances prohibiting discrimination
on the basis of sexual orientation and
gender-identity, though City Manager Curt
Walton instituted an administrative policy
last year prohibiting discrimination on sexual
McCarley has insisted the city council
lacks the authority to pass an employment
non-discrimination ordinance or policy inclusive
of “sexual orientation.”
In a Feb. 23, 2010, memo from McCarley
to Walton, McCarley said federal law in Title
VII does not prohibit discrimination based on
sexual orientation. The city charter, he said,
Charlotte City Attorney
Mac McCarley intends
to retire at the end of
also limits the city’s
statement to those
already listed (race, religion, color, sex, national
origin, age, disability, and political affilation).
In the memo, McCarley said Walton’s 2010
administrative policy change is the “most le-
see City Attorney on 15
Anti-gay amendment filed in N.C. House
House wording slightly narrower than harsh Senate version
by Matt Comer :: email@example.com
RALEIGH — An anti-gay constitutional
amendment that could strip away marriage
rights for same-sex couples was filed April 6 in
the North Carolina House of Representatives.
A similar amendment was introduced
to the Senate in late February. The House
version, filed by two Republicans and two
Democrats, contains different wording
that could slightly narrow the impact of the
“Marriage is the union of one man and
one woman at one time. No other relationship
shall be recognized as a valid marriage
by the State,” the House amendment reads.
The Senate’s version says no other “domestic
legal union” will be recognized.
LGBT advocates with the statewide
group Equality North Carolina say marriage
— already denied to same-sex couples by
state statute — isn’t the only right that could
be banned by the proposed Senate version.
Civil unions and domestic partner benefits
could also be subject to prohibition. Several
municipalities across the state offer health
and other benefits to same-sex partners
of their employees; those include Durham,
Mecklenburg and Orange Counties, as well
as the cities or towns of Carrboro, Chapel Hill,
Durham and Greensboro. Private companies,
including global giants like Charlotte’s Bank of
America, also offer such benefits and could
be subject to the Senate amendment.
“I think it is a step in the right direction
that they didn’t introduce as extreme a version
as the Senate did,” Equality North Carolina
Executive Director Ian Palmquist told qnotes.
“The fact remains it is still an attempt to write
discrimination into our state constitution.”
The House version is sponsored by
Republicans David Lewis (Harnett) and Rayne
Brown (Davidson) and Democrats James
Crawford, Jr. (Granville, Vance) and Dewey
Hill (Brunswick, Columbus). Additionally, 35
other representatives had as of press time
signed on as co-sponsors. Of the additional
co-sponsors, four are Democrats and one is
Palmquist indicated he had not spoken
to House leadership on Wednesday, but that
he and his group’s lobbyist would continue to
encourage the chamber’s leadership not to
bring the bill to the floor.
Republican state Sens. James Forrester
(Gaston), Jerry W. Tillman (Montgomery,
Randolph) and Dan Soucek (Alexander, Ashe,
Watauga, Wilkes) are the primary sponsors of
the Senate version. It has been referred to the
Senate Rules Committee. Twenty other senators
have signed on in support.
Similar amendments, whose primary
proponents have been Republicans, have
been kept at bay for the past seven years. The
state’s legislature flipped from a Democratic
to Republican majority in last November’s
midterm elections. A constitutional amendment
cannot be vetoed by the governor and
must gain the approval of a three-fifths majority
of both chambers before proceeding to the
ballot. A simple majority of voters is needed
for ratification. Both the Senate and House
versions of the amendment would place the
amendment on next year’s November ballot. : :
April 16-29 . 2011 qnotes
10 qnotes April 16-29 . 2011
Judy at Carnegie Hall: 50 years later
Commemorating Judy Garland’s historic performance at Carnegie Hall
by Jim Thompson :: guest contributor
April 23, 1961 will mark the 50th anniversary
of what was probably the greatest evening
in show business history. Over 3,000 lucky
people packed the world-famous Carnegie
Hall in New York City to see Judy Garland.
We are lucky enough that this evening was
recorded live and complete and has been
transforming fans for the last 50 years to
front row seats to hear and experience Judy
Garland, her charm, charisma, presence and
her truly marvelous voice in full form.
New York Herald Tribune reported on that
evening this way: “There was an extra bonus
at Carnegie Hall last night, Judy Garland
sang.” New York Post said: “Last night the
magnetism was circulating from the moment
she stepped on stage.”
All accounts of that night hailed the
Carnegie Hall concert as a triumph.
Variety, the periodical of record for the
show business industry, reported: “New
York’s Carnegie Hall was supercharged on
both sides of the footlights Sunday evening
… Pandemonium broke loose and a standing
ovation stalled the song fest for several
moments. After her twenty-fourth number of
the evening, she halted the tumultuous applause
demanding still another encore … Few
singers around can get as much out of a song
as Miss Garland … The tones are clear, the
phrasing is meaningful and the vocal passion
is catching. In fact, the audience couldn’t resist
anything she did. The aisles were jammed
during the encore … she followed with two
additional numbers ‘After You’ve Gone’ and
‘Chicago’ which brought her song bag for the
evening up to 26 numbers.”
“Two hours of pow,” was how Judy
Garland described the event.
Clearly Judy’s performance at Carnegie
Hall was a milestone in the life and career of
a performer who had seen many successes
in her lifetime. Judy had already experienced
comebacks many times before. Today, 50
years later, people are still raving about
this concert, no matter if they have heard it
hundreds of times or for the first time. Even
those who might not be Judy Garland fans
(say it ain’t so) are hooked by this concert.
It’s particularly wonderful given the fact that
a year-and-a-half earlier Judy Garland had
“Judy At Carnegie Hall” remains her
biggest selling recording. It originally stayed
on the charts for 94 weeks — 13 at number
one — and won her five Grammy Awards,
including Best Female Vocal Performance and
Album of the Year (the first time a woman to
win this category). Today it is still in print and a
very popular selling CD and music download.
To listen to it is to re-live what truly is the
greatest night in show business history sung
by the greatest entertainer in show business,
Judy Garland. If you haven’t heard it, do
yourself a favor and listen. If you have, listen
again. You’ll smile, you’ll laugh, you’ll cry. You
will love it. : :
— A self-described “Friend of Dorothy,”
Jim Thompson is a qnotes reader and
community member. He lives in Fort Mill, S.C.
April 16-29 . 2011 qnotes 11
Pride Charlotte wants to ‘stand proud’
Pride Charlotte, slated for Aug. 27, captures the heart of the Queen City
by Leah Cagle :: firstname.lastname@example.org
Pride. Inclusivity. Creativity. Diversity.
Words like these saturate the conversations
surrounding this year’s Pride Charlotte
festival. It only takes a brief glance at the
upcoming celebration to understand just what
an amazing event we have coming our way
Although Charlotte has been hosting
Pride festivities since the 1970s, the process
of creating a thriving LGBT community hasn’t
been easy. In 2005, the non-profit Charlotte
Pride organization dissolved after facing
intense anti-gay backlash. But since 2006,
when the Lesbian & Gay Community Center
took charge of the event, Pride Charlotte has
grown immensely, jumping from Gateway
Village to the N.C. Music Factory and now,
for 2011, to the very heart of the Queen City
— Uptown Tryon St.
“We are very excited to move our festival
Uptown and to the heart of Charlotte’s artistic
and cultural center,” Jonathan Hill, Pride
‘Teamwork makes the
Pride Charlotte needs volunteers,
vendors and visionaries to help make
this event possible. If you’re interested
in participating, visit the Pride Charlotte
website at pridecharlotte.com to learn
more about volunteer opportunities and
fill out a volunteer application.
Charlotte co-chair, said in a release. “The S.
Tryon St. location provides a unique opportunity
for our event to grow and to raise more
visibility for this city’s diverse gay community.”
Organizers [Ed. Note — This publication’s
editor serves on the event’s organizing committee]
say the Pride festival, slated for Aug.
27, is the largest celebration of LGBT culture
and community in the Carolinas. The event
attracts thousands of folks — gay and ally
alike — to partake in a vibrant, week-long
party of artistic, culinary and cultural delight.
Organizers have been hard at work, creating
new fundraising and partnership opportunities
in order to offer a more diverse set of
artistic events, participating organizations and
Organizers also say the event serves as a
unique opportunity for LGBT Charlotteans to
declare both their presence and their worth in
the greater community. Dave Webb, who also
serves as Pride Charlotte co-chair, called the
event a “statement of affirmation” that will
show “Charlotte’s LGBT community is a vital
part of the city’s cultural fabric.”
Center Board Chair John Stotler envisions
the event as an inclusive, unifying and mending
experience that will “build bridges within
our own community and among natural allies
across the metro Charlotte area.”
But Pride planners know from past
experience that not everyone in attendance
shares the same dream of acceptance and
“Unfortunately there are still politicians
Pride Charlotte’s 2010 festival was held at the N.C. Music Factory on the outskirts of Uptown.
and individuals in Charlotte that feel compelled
to judge and condemn the gay community,
but times are a-changing and the louder
they protest, the more they show their true
colors as agents of hate and intolerance,”
Pride Charlotte will again organize its
coalition of volunteers known as “Partners
in Peace,” dispersing them throughout the
festival to help promote positive communication
and ensure a peaceful experience for all
Despite the inherent political implications
in such an event, Dave Webb reiterates that
the true spirit of the festival is communal
rather than partisan.
“The Pride Charlotte festival is not a political
rally, it is a peaceful gathering of the LGBT
community, families and its’ supporters to
celebrate our community,” he says. : :
Let me see y’all one, two step
Southern Country Charlotte values community, organizer says
by Matt Comer :: email@example.com
Growing up gay can be hard. That’s especially
true if you grow up in the South or other
rural, conservative settings. Despite these
hardships, many of us LGBT Southerners still
long for a piece of home or clamor to embrace
what we consider our “roots.” Being gay
and Southern — or “country,” “redneck,”
“cowboy” or whatever term of endearment
you choose to identify yourself — has never
been mutually exclusive.
Southern Country Charlotte
(SCC) and a host of similar
groups across the nation
SCC, which holds their
annual Queen City Stomp
each April, was founded in
1991 and celebrates their 20th
anniversary this year. Though
folks come from far and wide
to partake in a show of Country Western
dancing, they’re also contributing toward
good causes. Southern Country Charlotte has
raised nearly $100,000 in cash, goods and services
benefitting local non-profit groups, both
within and outside of the LGBT community.
But SCC President Chris Gray says the
group is about much more than Country
Western dancing and fundraising. When he
and his partner moved to Charlotte in 2008,
12 qnotes April 16-29 . 2011
SCC offered them welcome and friendship.
“We had gone to the Eagle one
Wednesday night and they were doing dance
lessons,” Gray says. “He fell in love with it
and we started going every Wednesday.
The atmosphere, the people, they welcomed
everybody gay or straight or whatever.”
Gray’s partner loves to dance, though Gray
“It’s what I call
a spectator sport,”
he says. “There’s
a lot of members
that don’t dance,
including myself. A
lot of people who
come out do so just
to watch and it’s
amazing to watch
the unison of these
After the late 2009 closure of the Charlotte
Eagle, a gay Leather/Levi bar off South Blvd.,
SCC was forced to move their Queen City
Stomp to the Sheraton Charlotte Airport Hotel.
There, SCC members’ love of dance and their
camaraderie has overflowed and left its mark
on hotel staff and guests alike.
“The relationship we built with Sheraton
last year worked great,” Gray says. “They’ve
been real hand-in-hand. If we needed
something they were right on it. We had no
problems. Even people who were at the hotel
— who weren’t gay and who just happened to
be staying there — they would pay to come in
and they had a blast.”
Gray says the Sheraton has even purchased
a new dance floor. It mades its debut
at this year’s Queen City Stomp.
The community that surrounds SCC and
welcomes new members and guests extends
beyond the group’s local activities and mission.
SCC is a member of the International
Association of Gay/Lesbian Country Western
Dance Clubs (IAGLCWDC). Incorporated in
Texas in 1993, the international fellowship is a
member of the Gay and Lesbian International
Sports Association and helps to promote
both dancing balls, like Queen City Stomp,
and competitions across the globe. In July,
it’ll host a dancing competition at the North
American OutGames in Vancouver.
Gray says SCC’s relationship with
IAGLCWDC has been fruitful and Queen City
Stomp has even managed to get the attention
of many of the group’s members.
“We have wonderful cocktail parties,” he
says. “They were the talk of the [IAGLCWDC]
convention last year.”
Though SCC appreciates the praise, their
mission and focus remains squarely with the
people and organizations it benefits.
Other upcoming hoedowns
In the mood for more Country
Western dance In addition to
Charlotte’s Queen City Stomp, be sure
to check out these great events this
Seattle :: April 29-May 1
Emerald City Hoedown
Hosted by Rain Country
Provincetown :: April 29-May 1
19th Annual Spring Stomp
Hosted by Gays for Patsy
Philadelphia :: May 26-29
The Philadelphia Hoedown
The 18th Annual Convention of the
International Association of Gay/Lesbian
Country Western Dance Clubs.
— Event listings courtesy IAGLCWDC
“We are able to raise money for organizations
and charities while at the same time
getting out and doing stuff in the community
as much as we can,” he says. “Even with
the economy last year, we were able to raise
around $10,000. That was a great thing and we
hope to keep it going.” : :
as one of my
Deen, would greet
her folks. And,
to my little neck of the woods — here since
the fall of 1996! Oh my goodness, that’s a lot of
drag and pageants. This time, I will talk about
the three main pageants that I mentioned going
to in the last Rag and, also, start off with a
show that I failed to mention.
Several weeks ago, a few impersonators
did what I hear was a great show of illusions
down at a theater in Myrtle Beach. Then they
ended up at the fabulous Rainbow House.
Those ladies of the stage included Miss Gay
America Coti Collins (whom I believe organized
it all), Kirby Kolby, Gigi Monroe, the
highly decorated Denise Russell and the everfamous
Barbra impersonator (and longtime
Coti friend) Viki Williams. I know they put on
one more classy show.
And, speaking of Coti, it’s only fitting that
I next mention her first three prelims to Miss
Gay America. The first was Mid-America,
where Symphony Love Alexander took the
crown, with Jade Sinclair being 1st runner-up.
Secondly, an old school queen with unfinished
business won Miss Gay DC. Congrats are
going out to Raleigh’s Kirby Kolby who swept
every category. Her RU was Patti Lovelace.
The third was Miss MidEast here at Scorpio. It
was a great contest. A past Top 5 finalist at the
national contest, Chantel Reshae, won and her
RU was Lindsay Starr, who really put on a good
show and, although I missed her in Gown and
Onstage Response, I hear she really made quite
the impression. Congrats to Jessica Jade who
relinquished the title that night and really served
up the costumes. There were several formers
and guest entertainers in the house, but the
one who really surprised me was Champagne
Douglas who’s still got it after all these years.
One celebrity who gets much attention
and accolades from queens these days would
naturally be Lady Gaga and just recently she
made appearances at two gay clubs. She
actually performed with Miss EOY Vanessa
DeMornay at the Connection in Louisville and
she popped into the Round Up in Dallas after a
concert out there.
Congrats are going out to Dy’Mond
Cartier who won the most recent Miss NC
U.S.ofA. in Greensboro at Warehouse 29. It
was my pleasure to make the trip with our
Miss NC America Emery Starr, where I got to
by miss della :: qnotes contributor
Queens are blooming everywhere!
catch up with old friends like Jessica O’Brien,
Monica Marlo, Natalie Smalls, Tiffany Bonet
and Victoria Parker. Also on-hand were Tia
Chanella, Neely O’Hara, Paisley Parque,
Gabrielle Berlyn, Crystal Froste, Ebbony
Addams, Brooke Divine LaReese, Shae Shae
LaReese, Arabia Knight-Addams, Amaya, Olive
Oyl, Miss NC Unlimited Cheetah Shaw and her
king Taylor Knight-Addams and the list goes
on and on. I did get to see bar owner Kent and
met a precious new bartender they have there
named Jose Antonio. Dy’Mond’s first RU was
Charlotte’s own London Dior who wore a gown
that would scratch the eyeballs out of your
head, baby! Second RU was Orlando Chanel.
I have just unpacked my bags from a trip
to Miami, FL to judge the Carolinas Continental
pageants. Owner Alyson Thomas lives there
now and timing wasn’t such that she could get
away, so she had it there in her club this time.
No residency rules apply anyway, so that’s
why it was held there and the title still stuck.
That easy. And, boy did Alyson ever treat us
like royalty — from the accommodations to
the VIP treatment at the bar on the Saturday
night before. Imagine Macy Alexander’s face
when she walked into Dash on Washington
and met an idol face to face, Miss Khloe
Kardashian! They chatted for a few minutes
before Khloe had to run out. Needless to say,
Macy is still on Cloud Nine. Macy’s good sister
Leslie Lain is still glowing, I suppose, from
all the trade she pulled while there. Bitter,
party of one! As for the contest, there were
see Drag Rag on 15
April 16-29 . 2011 qnotes 13
14 qnotes April 16-29 . 2011
continued from page 13
many entertainers, including all four national
Continental titleholders, plus a few formers,
like Chanel Dupree and Erika Norell. Also,
some of Alyson’s former winners, too. The title
winners that evening include Mr. Carolinas
Continental Kyle Ean Haggerty, Miss PLUS
Tianna Love, Miss Elite Cierra Douglas, Miss
SC Continental Alexis Gabrielle Sherrington
and NC Continental Athena Dion, a new child
who did really well, including turning Talent
completely out. This “little Greek kid” (as I
call her), who was a military brat and actually
lived in Ft. Bragg for two years, got a standing
ovation. Next in line was another new child,
Evelyn Monroe, who had on probably the
prettiest updo I think I’ve ever seen. Many,
many thanks to the co-hostess Vegas Dion for
all the hospitality and to Alyson for treatment
fit literally for a queen. Diskotekka in Miami is
one happenin’ place! Wow!
I’ll close with prelims leading up to NC
EOY, which Angelica Dust will relinquish in just
weeks. Miss Flower Power is Trixie Fontaine
with RU Macaria Rage; Miss Forsyth County is
Neely O’Hara with RU Malayia Chanel Iman;
Miss Land in the Sky is Brinna Michaels with
RU Manhattan; and Miss Piedmont Princess is
Vivica Dupree with Paradise Dust as alternate.
I have the distinct pleasure of mentioning that
Olive Oyl, the Grande Dame of the Triad, was
named Miss Bat$h!# Emeritus. And, yes, they
really are spelling it that way — you’ll see
on the posters. Lord, only Olivia Vorhees Oyl
would consent to such.
A final note — A.J., I am not going out in
drag anytime soon, nor will I be asking for a
booking of all things, so here is your one-time
mention! Muah! : :
info: Drop me a line, OK
City attorney to resign
continued from page 9
gally defensible way to include sexual orientation
in the City’s equal employment language
without first requesting a Charter amendment
from the legislature.”
The term “gender identity” was not added
to Walton’s new non-discrimination policy.
“We are not recommending that you
include ‘gender identity’ as a protected status,”
McCarley’s memo to Walton read. “This
is a relatively new term, has no recognized
legal definition, and is highly subjective.”
Last year, McCarley told qnotes he worked
with the city manager’s office to come up with
the best possible changes for the new policy.
“The city manager asked us if we could
find a way to do this and we gave him the
best option we could,” he said in a telephone
McCarley said the term “gender identity”
had not been held up to any judicial scrutiny.
Harper Jean Tobin, policy counsel for the
Washington, D.C.-based National Center for
Transgender Equality (NCTE), told qnotes she
believed city officials were mistaken.
“It’s not new in the sense that it has been
part of various state and local laws in many
places for a decade, in some places for two
decades,” Tobin said in a 2010 interview via
phone. “There is a pretty well established
Charlotte is the last major city in the state
to take up discussion of LGBT-inclusion in
city ordinances or policies. Durham and
Raleigh passed “sexual orientation”-inclusive
non-discrimination policies in 1987 and
1988, respectively. Seven other cities and
four counties include “sexual orientation” in
their non-discrimination policies or ordinances.
Boone, Carrboro, Chapel Hill and Orange
County also include “gender identity.” : :
qomunity qonexions u
April 16-29 . 2011 qnotes 15
by trinity :: qnotes contributor
Before you have that
I love one-night stands. But, every
time I say, “Wanna get together
again” they say, “Sorry, I’m in a relationship!”
What’s up with open
Closed to the “Open,” Boston, MA
I agree, we single
people have become
laboratory rats for the
partnered world. Like
you, I too find many
couples “play openly.” I also hear
couples say, “It keeps us together rather
than tears us apart.” which makes me
want to scream “What-Ever!” So, sweetie,
if you’re about to take part in a one-night
stand, but want a few more nights, just
ask, “Are you partnered, single or a lab
I read your tips for getting rid of telemarketers.
But, really, I can’t just hang up on them
like you suggested
Telemarketing Troubles, Sioux Falls, SD
If truth were told, I don’t always have the heart to hang up on
those hard-working warriors of marketing. While I sometimes
go numb or just want to jump out a window, you
must always stay stern, clear and fast or, honey,
come join me on the windowsill! (My cartoon gives
you some real pointers on how I handle this challenging
My boyfriend is great and I don’t want to hurt him, but how do I
end my relationship without destroying someone I love
Happy Endings, Stanford, CT
Dearest Happy Endings,
Saying “No more!” always hurts even the strongest of beasts.
So, finding the right time, place and/or right situation is your
best solution. Never break
up during a fight, the end of a
long day or when someone is
in crisis. Yes, he will be upset,
but time heals everything. And,
darling, don’t tell him while
shopping in a rifle shop.
Someone I really liked dumped
me because “I acted too ditzy
and immature for a 34-year-old
man.” Why do I have to act
Keeping My Lollipop,
Eventually you have to stop
being a little brat and become a responsible, educated,
charming man. Being a man means not always quitting
relationships or jobs, not always saying what you feel and not
always partying when the sun goes down. But, even better,
Trinity’s Tough Tips For Knowing
When You’re a SAD (Still A Ditzy) boy
1. When you spend your last paycheck on Lady Gaga tickets
instead of paying your rent, you’re SAD!
2. When the woman you love says, “Baby, lets do something
fun tonight.” and you think, “God, I hate my mother!” you’re
3. When your hairline is receding and your belly is extending,
but you still insist on wearing your 80s florescent club wear
then you’re really SAD.
4. When your lover says, “You get dinner“ and you think
“Happy Meal again, yippy!” you’re definitely SAD.
5. When Monday means, instead of a hot shower, a shave and
off to work, you grab a Bloody Mary, two aspirins and begin
another chat room adventure — SAD!
6. When Friday means, off to the 21-and-under bar for a key
lime shot, instead of off with grown-up friends, then SAD.
7. When you dump your lover of 10 years for a 22-year-old
twinkie who is “really cute and sweet and likes my Xbox!,”
8. When you still spend your free time hanging out in arcades
and shopping malls, guess what again
9. When you withdraw your last two grand and blow it on a
RSVP vacation because your credit cards are all maxed out,
10. Lastly, you know you’re still a ditzy boy if the previous nine
tips pissed you off and now you’re going to get stoned just
to show Trinity who’s in charge of your life, SAD for sure! : :
— With a Masters of Divinity, Reverend Trinity was
host of “Spiritually Speaking,” a weekly radio drama,
and now performs globally.
info: www.telltrinity.com . Trinity@telltrinity.com
Tell Trinity, P.O. Box 23861 . Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33307
Sponsored by: Provincetown Business Guild
800-637-8696 . www.ptown.org
16 qnotes April 16-29 . 2011
out in the stars
by charlene lichtenstein :: qnotes contributor
April 16 - 29
Take the bull by the
horns when the Sun
stampedes into Taurus.
It is time to lasso and
brand your personal
message on the world. Grab what you want by
the tail and don’t let go. Hey, nice tail.
ARIES (03.21-04.20) Here are some things to
keep in mind right now. First, be sure to surround
yourself with luxurious objects of art to stimulate
your imagination. Second, take a peek at your
nest egg to see if it is ready to hatch. Third, cook
up your best ideas and serve them while they
are hot. Gay Rams launch themselves into outer
space. Don’t scramble your message.
TAURUS (04.21-05-21) There is something about
you, something astute, clever and very charming.
But, queer Bulls may go out on a social limb
in an attempt to weasel their way into a certain
highly selective social circle. Life is much more
that glibly chatting up the glitterati in order to get
ahead. Don’t slip on your own oil as you grease
the wheels … along with other parts. Get some
heft behind you.
GEMINI (05.22-06.21) What is it about this time
period that makes pink Twins so wildly intuitive
Buff up your crystal ball and take a close peek.
You conjure up all sorts of radical scenarios and
strange ideas. Saner folks think that you are
either a savant or a loon. They say that there is a
fine line between genius and madness. Have you
crossed it I guess we will have to see.
CANCER (06.22-07.23) If you find that your social
calendar fills to overflowing, jump in with both
feet. Friends rely on you to provide the who,
what, when and where. But how, gay Crab The
secret is to maintain (and update) your list of
contacts and do your research. Start with the A
list and work your way down. Hmmm, how low
on the alphabet will you need to go to get the
LEO (07.24-08.23) It is time to strategize, proud
Lion, and manifest your corporate destiny. Keep
your ear to the ground and pay close attention
to possible new opportunities. Have you
been toiling in the background for substandard
compensation and little recognition Your time
is coming soon. The real question is — will your
head fit into your new spacious office
VIRGO (08.24-09.23) Drop your antiseptic view of
the world and get down and dirty, queer Virgo.
This spance of time goads you into getting to
the guts of things to find out what gives you
your unique spark. You may be surprised at
what makes you tick. If the past few weeks
have darkened your luminous light, use this
time to find a slice of sunny oomph. Heck, why
not eat the whole pie!
LIBRA (09.24-10.23) There is a tendency to play
the victim when things do not go your way.
Stop nursing those regrets and use this time to
bulldoze your way though the negative blockade.
Folks don’t like what you like Tough. Consider the
source when others start to criticize or stall you.
Only you can control how you feel about yourself
and what you can personally accomplish.
SCORPIO (10.24-11.22) As things heat up, proud
Scorps cannot help but consider their options
in relationships. Create a list of what is working
and what isn’t with partners. Ties that bind
tighten and single scorpions are itching to get
hitchin’. But, choose carefully, lover; the upcoming
sultry months deserve a hot and buttered
companion, not a hot and bothered one.
SAGITTARIUS (11.23-12.22) Feeling especially
slothful and decadent (So, what else is new)
That relaxing feeling will soon pass, gay Archer,
as a fire is set under you. Well, maybe not a fire,
but certainly a fair amount of guilt. Perhaps it
is time to think about getting into better shape.
Implement a new exercise regime and diet
before your spandex stretches to cellophane.
CAPRICORN (12.23-01.20) Grab a fistful of party
mix and chug-a-lug. You become quite the party
animal. Pink Caps have a way of finding the
hottest spot in town and can turn up the temperature
even more. Before you singe your best
assets on a quick flame, check to see if there
are longer lasting opportunities for romance. At
least, find one that will burn through the summer.
AQUARIUS (01.21-02.19) This time period stirs up
your domestic agenda. Survey your domain and
see if it needs some sprucing up. Aqueerians
would like to plan some home-based entertaining,
but how can you even consider it with your
current abode The experts are unavailable, but
don’t let that stop you. What should stop you are
those paint swatches in shades of puce and the
macrame plant hangers.
PISCES (02.20-03.20) Your conversation is less
than riveting, but who really cares This is the
time to set foundations and solidify your position
rather than shake the rafters. Collect your
thoughts and see how practical you can be.
There are some surprising results on the horizon
no matter what the naysayers say. March
to your own tune. Even better — tango to it. : :
© 2011 Madam Lichtenstein, LLC. All Rights
info: Visit www.TheStarryEye.com for
e-greetings, horoscopes and Pride jewelry. My
book “HerScopes: A Guide To Astrology For
Lesbians” from Simon & Schuster is
available at bookstores and major booksites.
April 16-29 . 2011 qnotes 17
on being a gay parent
by brett webb-mitchell :: qnotes contributor
“And stretch one more time, finding
your edge and pushing a little bit more,
even if it is just an inch or a micro-inch,”
Elijah says to his enthusiastic crowd of
25 aging yoga participants at our local
YMCA. Downward dog, looking like my
Labrador retrievers as they wander into
our bedroom with their morning yawn
and stretch, I put my head down, push
back on my heels, hips up toward the sky, legs and hands outstretched.
Then we glide into upward dog, reversing the arc of the back. Amid
squats, bends, warrior poses, leg and groin stretches, cross-legged and
breathing exercises, we make our way through poses that cannot help
but add flexibility to our not-so-limber bodies, minds and spirits. What
is most mystifying and satisfying is that yoga has also made me more
flexible as a father.
I came to yoga through my daughter Adrianne’s invitation one
summer’s day. She took up yoga at college and soon my partner, and
then I, followed her to a yoga class. At first, it was a daddy-daughter
thing in which I was enjoying the camaraderie of the moment. Though
my body ached as I learned how inflexible my limbs were, I looked
at the clock, trying to figure out, “How much longer must I do this”
But, with time, persistence and willingness to learn to take it slowly,
my body became more lithesome. Along with my daughter, my son
works out with me at the YMCA. He and I tend to focus on running
and lifting weights. Needless to say, between both children, my entire
being is getting a daily work-out, keeping me young(er), limber(er) and
healthier. In a fun way, we are engaged in a practice that my father
started with me when I was a young child, taking me to Saturday
morning gym activities like Dodgeball or to little league practice. There
is something special about physical activities that draw children and
parents together in incredible ways.
What I’ve appreciated about learning yoga is how easily the
practices have generalized to parenting as a gay dad. For example,
consider flexibility. In yoga, arms, legs and torso, down to legs and
fingers, can start to stiffen when not fully used. This is why it is helpful
to bend and flex body parts slowly, methodically, not too quickly, but
without undue waiting, massaging our bones and sinews back to fuller
usage. Likewise, in life as a parent who is LGBTQ, because we parent
in a world largely defined by straight parents, we need to flex or use
the specialness of our love of being a parent whose family may face
oppression overtly or covertly. We will be challenged to love our partners
and children genuinely and smartly, careful so as not to humiliate
anyone, but proclaiming the love without apology.
As we learn to be flexible in yoga, we also learn to stretch. What I
love is the challenge to stretch a toe, finger, arm, legs and the curve of
a back, a headstand or torso just a little further each and every time we
engage in a yoga practice. Sometimes the stretch can be counted in
inches and some times in micro-inches, only known by the practitioner.
It is learning the balance of being comfortable in our bodies, but also
knowing where our “edge” is and challenging ourselves to pull or push
a little bit more. In parenting, we are stretched. Growing up with a narrative
of being a straight parent, I’m constantly adjusting and re-adjusting
my expectations and strategies in parenting around the reality that I’m
a gay dad. That means I have to be sensitive to and aware of how my
being out, published, speaking to groups, affects not only me, but my
children and partner as well. It is a privilege, honor and responsibility
that straight parents do not have to consider.
Finally, Elijah has often reminded his class that yoga is 10 percent
book knowledge or theory and 90 percent practice. So, is parenting: it
is 10 percent book knowledge, whether reading this article or my book
on this subject or that of other fine resources and 90 percent practice.
Gay parenting is not rocket science: it is more complicated and beautiful
than that. It is an honor, duty, joy and takes more love than we thought
we had within us (but, discover we do), in a world in which relationships
change and in which control over our circumstances are tenuous at
best. But, it is in the stretching and flexibility, that we learn to love just
a little bit more, come what may. And, this is where I delight in being a
yoga daddy. : :
18 qnotes April 16-29 . 2011
Creech to share new book
April 27 • Chapel Hill
Internationalist Books hosts the Rev. Jimmy Creech discussing his new book “Adam’s Gift: A Memoir of a Pastor’s
Calling to Defy the Church’s Persecution of Lesbians and Gays,” a moving story and an important chapter in the
unfinished struggle for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender civil and human rights. 405 W. Franklin St. Free. 919-
April 16-17 • Charlotte
Queen City Stomp
Hundreds of participants from across the
country and southeast flock to Charlotte for
Southern Country Charlotte’s annual Queen
City Stomp, an LGBT Country-Western dancing
festival including evening parties and
dances and daytime dancing lessons and
more. For more information, including registration,
event details and lodging options, visit
April 16-17 • Charlotte
Kings Drive Art Walk
Charlotte’s Festival in the Park presents its
first annual Kings Drive Art Walk, a fine arts
and emerging artists festival. Sugar Creek
Greenway, Kings Dr. & Morehead St. April
16, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. April 17, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
April 16 • Charlotte
Petra’s Got Talent
Petra’s continues their search for huge talent
with eight new contestants. Calling all performers:
vocalists, instrumentalists, dancers,
comedians, drag performers, stupid dog tricks
and more! Cash prizes for the top three and
bookings for first place. Visit petraspianobar.
com for official contestant rules. Audience
will decide the winner. Petra’s Piano Bar,
1919 Commonwealth Ave. 10 p.m.
April 17 • Durham
‘Sing for the Cure’ Kick-Off Social
Common Woman Chorus and Triangle Gay
Men’s Chorus co-host a casual event to promote
the upcoming Triangle premiere performance
of “Sing for the Cure” on June 12 at the
Meymandi Concert Hall. Proceeds benefit the
choruses and Susan G. Komen for the Cure-NC
Triangle. Cash bar, free appetizers. Suggested
donation of $20. Revolution Restaurant, 107 W.
Main St. 3-6 p.m. tgmchorus.org/events.
April 20 • Rock Hill
Wednesday Night Out
Amici’s Italian Restaurant in Rock Hill hosts
a weekly night out for the surrounding LGBT
community. WNO is a gay professionals happy
hour for the Rock Hill/South Charlotte area
— a perfect opportunity to meet make new
friends and get connected. 2732 Celanese Rd.
For more information, call 803-328-6836.
April 23 • Charlotte
Plaza Midwood Spring Party
Music from more than half a dozen bands and
musicians. Artwork from community artists.
Food from the Diamond. This and more at
the Plaza Midwood Spring Party, hosted by
Petra’s. 1919 Commonwealth Ave.
April 28 • Charlotte
Local artists and creative souls gather for a
unique show-and-tell presenting 20 slides for 20
seconds each in what organizers call an “exhilarating
kaleidoscope of inspirations, ideas
and work.” Amos’ Southend. 1423 S. Tryon St.
7:30 p.m. pecha-kucha.org/night/charlotte/.
May 3 • Charlotte
Walk against domestic violence
The Avon Foundation presents Walk the
Course Against Domestic Violence. Walk up
to 18 holes (five miles) alongside tournament
players’ wives and families at Quail Hollow
Club, a PGA TOUR course, to raise funds and
awareness for the domestic violence cause.
All proceeds benefit local domestic violence
organizations. $35 per person ($25 before
4/22), under 12 free. Quail Hollow Club, 3700
Gleneagles Rd. 6-9 p.m. 866-646-2866.
May 5 • Charlotte
From apartments to million dollar homes, you’ll
find unique items to fit any style and budget
at the International Collectibles and Antiques
Show! Including: home decor, antiques, furniture,
collectibles, art, jewelry, crafts and more.
Metrolina Tradeshow Expo, 7100 Statesville
Rd. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. icashows.com/ICAShows.
May 6 • Charlotte
The Mint Museum in Charlotte is hosting three
“First Friday” Mint events this summer, the
second of which is Empower(mint). The Mint
Museum Uptown will be organizing live entertainment,
gallery tours, hands-on art activities
and a cash bar. The event is free for members
or $10 for non-members. The Levine Center for
the Arts, 500 S. Tryon St. 6-11 p.m. For more information
contact April Young at april.young@
mintmuseum.org or call 704-337-2034.
May 6 • Charlotte
HIV, AIDS, and You Art Show
Local artists present their “Positively Art”
show, remaining on display until June 17.
The Lesbian and Gay Community Center, 820
Hamilton St., Suite B11. Show opens at 5:30
p.m. Free. 704-333-0144. gaycharlotte.com.
May 7 • Charlotte
AIDS Walk Charlotte
One of the largest AIDS fundraisers across
the Carolinas, AIDS Walk Charlotte raises
funds for the Regional AIDS Interfaith
Network. To register walk teams or learn
more, visit aidswalkcharlotte.org.
May 14 • Charlotte
Queen City Drag Race
arts. entertainment. news. views.
The second annual Queen City Drag Race
heats up! Competitions, music, drink and
food! Proceeds benefit Human Rights
Campaign and Pride Charlotte.
Hartigan’s Irish Pub, 601 S. Cedar St. 1-6 p.m.
May 14 • Raleigh
The LGBT Center of Raleigh presents its
downtown festival celebrating diversity — an
historic first for the capital city. Festival will
include vendors, children’s area, entertainment
and more. City Plaza, Martin St. For more
information, including festival schedule and a
location map, visit outraleigh.com.
May 21 • Raleigh
Alliance of AIDS Services-Carolina hosts their
annual walk and bicycle ride in downtown
Raleigh. Register walkers, learn more about
the ride and more at aidswalkandride.org.
May 25 • Charlotte
Fourth Annual Happening
The Charlotte Lesbian & Gay Fund presents
their annual luncheon event, presented by
Wells Fargo. Proceeds benefit the Fund.
2011 grant recipients will be highlighted.
Omni Hotel, 132 E. Trade St. fftc.org/Page.
May 27-30 • Charlotte
A Memorial Day Weekend full of exciting
events by Just Twirl. Details TBA.
we want your who/what/where
Submitting an event for inclusion in our calendar has never been easier:
T H R O U G H
print and online advertising solutions
with qnotes and goqnotes.com
call or email us today
April 16-29 . 2011 qnotes 19
20 qnotes April 16-29 . 2011