Tuesday, April 24, 2012

History of Pride

LGBTQ people have a long tradition of celebrating our culture and communities through pride parades.

In June 1969, queer individuals rioted following a police raid on the Stonewall Inn, a gay bar in New York City. That November, the first gay pride parade was proposed. To commemorate the anniversary of Stonewall, "Christopher Street Liberation Day" was held with an assembly on Christopher Street and a gay pride march covering the 51 blocks to Central Park. Similar events were held in Chicago, Los Angeles, and San Francisco.

The next year, pride marches spread to cities all over the globe – Boston, Dallas, Milwaukee, London, Paris, West Berlin, Stockholm… and by 1972 the participating cities included Atlanta, Buffalo, Detroit, Washington D.C., Miami, and Philadelphia.

Here at the University of Cincinnati, we celebrate the LGBTQ community through Queercat Pride Week. Monday will kick off the festivities with a "Rainbow Flash Mob" – we will line Main Street in monochromatic clothing to create a rainbow of people.

For a full list of events, check out the Facebook event here. There are many exciting events to take part in, including a picnic, speakers, art installations, queer zumba, and of course the Genderf*ck Drag Show! Hope everybody can make it to some of our great events!


Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Emergency Action: Miami & UC Unite Against Hate!

UC Alliance and Miami Spectrum have created a dual response to a hate crime at Miami University in which the victims were two gay students, one from UC and one from Miami.

Tomorrow (Thursday, April 5) at 5 p.m., members of UC Alliance will be joined by fellow students, faculty, and staff at the corner of Clifton and MLK where they will rally for an end to hate crimes and hold hands in an act of solidarity.

The hate crime occurred on Wednesday, March 24, following a drag show in Oxford. The victims briefly held hands as they were walking home. They were called "faggots" and attacked by a group of four men. Both students were punched multiple times.

The Facebook event asks that attendees come wearing a white shirt or top to represent unity for peace and bring signs that call for an end to hate crimes against our LGBTQIA community. After the rally, protesters will line up holding hands to show that no one deserves to be hurt for showing affection.

The rally will be receiving coverage from all the locals news networks, the Cincinnati Enquirer, and CityBeat.

RSVP to the Facebook event and invite all your friends!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Students face hate speech on UC campus

Some people wonder why we need an LGBTQ Center on campus. Like racism and sexism, homophobia and transphobia are often overlooked or brushed aside. For many students, facing heterosexism is a daily reality.

Niki Dorset was walking to a class in Edwards from the LGBTQ Center one evening. In the area by the ticket stands and the tennis courts, a group of three or four white males made fake coughing noises and saying "fag" and "faggot" under their breaths. As they passed one another, Niki heard one of the boys say, "I'm tired of all these faggots around here." Niki kept walking without any further confrontation.

"I'm tired of this happening to me," Niki said. "More specifically, it’s frustrating to have this kind of thing continue to occur at UC, a place where I’m supposed to feel valued, a place where I’m supposed to learn. I feel angry that this is happening, and quite frankly I’m scared when it does happen because I don’t know when it will stop or what the result may be."

Not only do incidents like this deeply affect students' emotions and personal lives, but it can also affect their learning. "When I got to class, I was still feeling the emotions from what I had just experienced. Unfortunately, it influenced my experience inside the classroom. My thoughts were focused on getting called faggot rather than the purpose of the professor."

"Knowing that people on campus hate me, it doesn’t really allow room for trusting that this behavior of hate will not happen by the students in the class," Niki said. "Furthermore, I realized that after class I knew that I had to walk back across campus, which for very good reason I didn’t want to do."

"I truly hope that something can be done about hate speech at UC and other campuses. It doesn’t matter if it happens one time or 20 times, it still hurts. I know that if it is happening to me then it is happening to others."

Monday, March 5, 2012

Campus-Wide Safe Zone Training

On Wednesday, March 7, the LGBTQ Center is holding a Campus-Wide Safe Zone Training in Rec Center 3220 from 5:15 to 7:15 p.m. Some people may be wondering what Safe Zone Training is, and why it's important.

Safe Zone Training seeks to increase the visible presence of students, staff and faculty who can help to shape a campus that is accepting of all people regardless of sexuality, gender identification/expression, or any other difference.

"It's valuable because people can learn a lot from attending," says Jaisha Garnette, a first-year Art History student. "It's useful to everyone. It can only help." Garnette went through Safe Zone Training fall quarter. "I became more aware of what it meant to go through training."

Training topics and exercises include becoming comfortable discussing sexuality and gender identifications, the importance of inclusive language, creating safe spaces, and how to be a supportive advocate and ally for LGBTQ social justice and equality.

"I think it's important to be inclusive," says Stacey Taylor, a second-year transfer student in the Fine Arts program. "Even though I identify as gay, I still think there's a lot more that I can learn about the LGBTQ community."

Jordan Sosna, a third-year Political Science major, went through the training earlier this quarter. "It should be mandated that more people, including all university staff, have to go through it," he says, stressing its importance. "That includes RAs and SOLs."

In addition to sexual orientation and gender identity, Safe Zone Training also covers topics like race and violence.


If you plan on attending, please RSVP to UC.LGBTQ.Center@gmail.com

Facebook event can be found here.

Social Media Intern

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Questions for Rex Lee?

Hey all!

Do you have any questions for Rex Lee related to his sexual orientation, the LGBTQ community, and how it has affected his career as an actor? Any other questions on your mind?

PAC and the LGBTQ Center are looking for student questions for a Q&A during the Rex Lee event, which takes place tomorrow at 7 p.m. in TUC's Great Hall.

For more information, see yesterday's blog post or check out the Facebook event here.

Send your questions to our program director Leisan Smith at smiln@ucmail.uc.edu!

Social Media Intern

Monday, February 27, 2012

Rex Lee

Did you know that PAC and the LGBTQ Center are bringing Entourage's Rex Lee to UC?

For those of you unfamiliar with Rex Lee, he is an openly gay Asian-American actor who graduated from Oberlin Conservatory of Music here in Ohio. He came out to his parents when he was 22; his mother kicked him out of the family home, which would be the start of an 11 year estrangement from his family.

Rex Lee found fame in the HBO comedy series Entourage, where he played Lloyd Lee, the gay Chinese-American assistant to Ari Gold (Jeremy Piven). His character was on the receiving end of many jokes about his sexuality and race.

Rex Lee admitted that there were also occasional jokes aimed at his sexuality and ethnicity from members of the crew behind-the-scenes. "I try not to let it bother me," he told TMZ in 2009. Being a minority due to both his race and sexual orientation, Rex Lee is a Hollywood anomaly.

These days, Rex Lee stars in the new ABC sitcom Suburgatory; his character Mr. Wolfe recently came out to the entire student body in the cafeteria. He doesn't mind playing another gay role: "When I was first coming out, all my friends told me I couldn't pass for straight or bi so I shouldn't even bother trying. So I didn't bother trying."

Come to the Rex Lee event at 7p.m. this Wednesday, 29 February in TUC's Great Hall!
Facebook event: http://www.facebook.com/events/215659801851355/


Social Media Intern

Friday, February 17, 2012

Are you coming to the LGBTQ Center's "Coming Out" Open House next Thursday?!

The University of Cincinnati LGBTQ Center has come a long way in the past few years. Four years ago, there was no LGBTQ Center, and the LGBTQ community found its place and resources with the remarkable staff at the UC Women’s Center.  However, once the physical space of the LGBTQ Center was established, the running joke was that "we were in the closet."  Now the LGBTQ Center is finally "coming out" — and this has all happened within the past two years!

The LGBTQ Center is incredibly grateful for all of the support from faculty and students. To celebrate this milestone, we are holding a "Coming Out" Open House in the new space located in 565 Steger. At the Open House, you'll be able to see the new location, hear more about the LGBTQ Center's history, find out more about the resources and programs available, and listen to some great speakers.

The "Coming Out" Open House is will be held on February 23rd from 5 to 7 p.m. in 565 Steger. The program will start at 5:30 p.m. For more information, please contact B Carbonara at carbonby@mail.uc.edu. To RSVP, please send confirmation to UC.LGBTQ.Center@gmail.com.

A link to the event on Facebook can be found here.