Sie sind auf Seite 1von 40


PO Box 77401 | Atlanta, GA 30357 404-815-6941 | Editor: Laura Douglas-Brown Deputy Editor: Dyana Bagby Web Manager: Ryan Watkins Art Director: Bo Shell





4 | East Point Possums headline month of Pride activities. 6 | Events: Cirque de Nuit, LGBT lm screenings. 7 | Events: Out in the Stands, Augusta Pride, Pride Run. 8 | Events: Pet Blessing, Pride Seder, Evening for Equality. 11 | Packed calendar as Atlanta marks National LGBT Pride Month.

Melissa Carter, Jim Farmer, Shannon Hames, Topher Payne, Matt Schafer, Steve Warren, Ryan Lee



Publisher: Christina Cash Associate Publisher: Tim Boyd Sales Manager: Marshall Graham Sales Executive: Anne Clarke The Clarke Agency National Advertising: Rivendell Media, 908-232-2021 Richard Eldredge, Sandy Malcolm, Lynn Pasqualetti, Robert Pullen



13 | Attempt to de-sex Cheshire Bridge could mean challenger for gay councilman. 15 | Team Friendly launches t-shirt competition to combat HIV stigma. 17 | Supreme Court countdown: Rally planned as marriage equality rulings near. 18 | BRIEFS: No I Do for Illinois, trans Navy Seal comes out, and more.


Ofcial photo


All material in the Georgia Voice is protected by federal copyright law and may not be reproduced without the written consent of the Georgia Voice. The sexual orientation of advertisers, photographers, writers and cartoonists published herein is neither inferred nor implied. The appearance of names or pictorial representation does not necessarily indicate the sexual orientation of that person or persons. We also do not accept responsibility for claims made by advertisers. Unsolicited editorial material is accepted by the Georgia Voice, but we do not take responsibility for its return. The editors reserve the right to accept, reject or edit any submission. Guidelines for freelance contributors are available upon request. A single copy of the Georgia Voice is available from authorized distribution points. Multiple copies are available from the Georgia Voice ofce only. Call for rates. If you are unable to reach a convenient free distribution point, you may receive a 26-issue mailed subscription for $60 per year. Checks or credit card orders can be sent to Tim Boyd, Postmaster: Send address changes to the Georgia Voice, PO Box 77401, Atlanta, GA 30357. The Georgia Voice is published every other Friday by The Georgia Voice, LLC. Individual subscriptions are $60 per year for 26 issues. Postage paid at Atlanta, GA, and additional mailing ofces. The editorial positions of the Georgia Voice are expressed in editorials and in editors notes. Other opinions are those of the writers and do not necessarily represent the opinion of the Georgia Voice and its staff. To submit a letter or commentary: Letters should be fewer than 400 words and commentary, for web or print, should be fewer than 750 words. Submissions may be edited for content and length, and must include a name, address and phone number for verication. Email submissions to or mail to the address above.


President Barack Obama, ofcially proclaiming June as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month (White House, May 31)

Ive been on this huge journey to gure out my life, and now I am back here I think where I am supposed to be.
Professional soccer player Robbie Rogers in a May 26 postgame press conference after his debut with the LA Galaxy made him the rst openly gay athlete to compete in U.S. mens professional team sports. Rogers, a former national team player, came out in April and announced his retirement. (YouTube, May 27)

Join us online:

The LGBT community has written a proud chapter in this fundamentally American story by reminding us that integrity and respect remain cornerstones of our military and civilian culture.
Department of Defense LGBT Pride Month memorandum (, May 31)

Screen capture via YouTube

This whole thing has been a bit surreal for us because we have been raised to believe that love is love. We never realized that our happiness and openness would inspire so many individuals.
Brad Taylor and Dylan Meehan in a statement released after the seniors were voted Cutest Couple at New Yorks Carmel High. The story went viral after a classmate posted it to Tumblr. (Hufngton Post, June 1)

Photo via Tumblr

This year, we celebrate LGBT Pride Month at a moment of great hope and progress, recognizing that more needs to be done. Support for LGBT equality is growing, led by a generation which understands that, in the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.

25 | Folk legend Joan Baez on performing with Indigo Girls and kissing a girl. 27 | EVENTS: Peach Party brings circuit DJs to Atlanta. 31 | THEATER: The Boy and the Pink Bear and The Velveteen Rabbit 33 | BRIEFS: Ellen DeGeneres, Amanda Bynes, Lauryn Hill and more. 34 | CALENDAR


37 | THATS WHAT SHE SAID: What Melissa Carter hears when the mic is off. 39 | DOMESTICALLY DISTURBED: Topher Payne loves his labels.



Photos by Dyana Bagby


Possums have raised thousands of dollars for organizations including Atlanta Pride, the Phillip Rush Center and the MISTER project of Positive Impact. East Point Mayor Earnestine Pittman, who has a lesbian daughter, said she supports the show 100 percent and notes it is the second largest event in the city. Only the citys Fourth of July celebration brings out a slightly larger crowd. Ive gone to one show and I enjoyed it, Pittman said. The city has a very diverse population and I know [the show] has been very protable for the charity it supports and is well known. Pittman said the fact the Possums show brings people from everywhere to East Point gives the city a chance to showcase its pride. People may think because we are a small city we are not welcoming. But we appreciate diversity in our city, whether its race, religion, sexual orientation it doesnt make any difference, she said.

East Point Villagers



East Point Possums Show June 15, 8-11 p.m. on the Commons in East Point

Know before you go:

Show is from 8-11 p.m. but organizers say get there early because the Commons area gets crowded quickly. The show is free, but all donations and sales go to benet Lost-n-Found Youth, which helps homeless LGBT young people. Need GPS to get there? The show is held in the Commons in downtown East Point, across the street from East Point Law Enforcement Center located at 2727 East Point St., East Point, GA 30344.

Rick Westbrook

Annual East Point drag show highlights Stonewall Month

worked behind the scenes during the early years of the Possums show, a role with which they were more comfortable. Chuck Jenkins asked for several years for them to put together a number but Towne said they always declined. Then when he got really, really sick, he sent a message via Rick [Westbrook] that hed like us to do a number. He was dying so of course we could not say no. We thought it would be a quick little number, Merritt said. And we were so grateful we did because Chuck died four days later. And thats why we still do it. That rst number, performed in 2004, was a simple routine to YMCA by the Village People hence the groups name. This was in the days when the stage was a couple of risers on cinder blocks in a tiny parking lot and the backdrop was an empty Uhaul truck, Towne said. Since that time, the East Point Villagers have gotten quite good and plan their own choreography, make their own costumes and now perform to medleys of pop favorites from CeeLo Green to Glee. This year, the Villagers have been practicing hard and promise another signature medley that will have people dancing and donating as well as possibly shedding a tear, Towne said.

By DYANA BAGBY Some 3,000 people are expected to ock to downtown East Point on June 15 for the annual East Point Possums Show, where they will drink gallons of Possum Punch, watch more than 25 drag performances and stuff dollar bills into sweaty, ahem, places to raise money to help LGBTQ homeless youth. This year, proceeds from the fundraiser benet Lost-n-Found Youth, which recently announced a $1 million capital campaign to fund new resources as well as a new shelter. It just keeps getting bigger and bigger each year, said Rick Westbrook, matriarch of the Possums as well as executive director of Lostn-Found. Every dollar that comes to the stage, every sale that is made, will go directly to Lostn-Found and I will be reminding people of that constantly. Launched in 1998 by a group of friends Westbrook, John Jeffrey, Chesley Thurman and Chuck Jenkins the East Point Possums started as a small show in a backyard to raise a few hundred dollars for Pets Are Loving Support. When Jenkins died in 2004 due to complications from AIDS, his friends continued to do the show in his honor. Over the years, the


For those who have gone to the show, theres no denying there are crowd favorites besides the Possums, of course. The East Point Villagers includes partners Andria Towne and Sheila Merritt. They never intended to be on stage, both stress. They

Lost-n-Found Youth, founded by Westbrook to help homeless LGBT youth, is an important cause to the Villagers as well and they plan to incorporate the issue into their number. The Armorettes, the infamous camp drag troupe which has raised more than $2 million dollars in the past 33 years for AIDS service organizations, performed at the Possums show for the very rst time last year. Sofonda Cox, an Armorette for three years, said the mission of the Possums matches theirs as well. For many years, our goal has been to ght HIV and AIDS and help charities and build our community, Cox said. A lot of Possums are supportive of us and we feel we should be supportive of them. And its a total blast to go to watch and observe. The show is a great community-building event and provides awareness of what we do. The Armorettes are also big supporters of Lost-n-Found, Cox said. This year, the Armorettes are planning a medley around a campy movie but that is all Cox would give up. I love sitting on the hill and watching the performances and mingling with people and just seeing so many people come together for a good cause, Cox said. And bring your dollar bills.





Last years Atlanta Cotillion crowning may be the last as the fundraising from for AID Atlanta launches a new format. (Photo by Brent Corcoran/RNZ Photgraphy)

Films document decades of LGBT equality ght

On these Shoulders We Stand, Married and Counting screen at Midtown theater
By STEVE WARREN Its not billed as the Stonewall Film Festival, but Stonewall Month events include screenings on two consecutive nights, June 11 and 12, of documentaries that essentially bookend the ongoing story of the ght for LGBT equality. Both lms are set for 7 p.m. at the Landmark Midtown Art Cinemas. On These Shoulders We Stand, screening June 11, has evolved from Glenne McElhinneys oral history project, Impact Stories: Californias LGBT History, for which shes been traveling the Golden State interviewing LGBT pio-queers, now in their 70s and 80s. Even though many of us have grown up reading about the likes of MCC founder Rev. Troy Perry and lesbian activist Ivy Bottini, there will be young people in our community who have never heard of any of McElhinneys 11 subjects. Thats why lms like this are necessary and theres an urgency to capture the memories of those who were around before the Stonewall Riots began the movement in earnest. The stories have been told before of McCarthy-era persecution (much of it orchestrated by a closeted J. Edgar Hoover), police raids on gay bars, being considered sick and generally being under far more pressure to remain closeted than most of us are today. This lm is more Los Angeles-centered than Before Stonewall (New York), Last Call at Mauds (San Francisco) and others that have documented our pre-history. It begins with almost dizzyingly brief takes to introduce the B, the T and the nine Ls and Gs who will be our guides. Most get to tell their own stories later at a more leisurely pace. Bottini was president of the National Organization for Womens New York chapter until she started standing up for lesbian visibility. Soon she found herself in L.A., where she was welcomed as a hero but still controversial. Perry couldnt nd a church where gays were welcome so he started his own. Nancy Valverde endured repeated arrests for not dressing as a woman should. Actor Dale Reynolds formed the Alliance for Gay & Lesbian Artists in the days before GLAAD. You may not know all their names but after you see the lm youll look down and realize youve been standing on their shoulders.

Cirque de Nuit offers new take on Cotillion
By BO SHELL Now in its 12th year, Atlanta Cotillion is turning its old fundraising format on its crown. Instead of drag debutantes, the June 8 Cirque de Nuit will be an avant-garde ball at the Delta Heritage Museum. Under the old Cotillion format, male volunteers impersonated female debutantes to raise money for AID Atlanta. The cotillion ball capped the fundraising season, with the person who raised the most money crowned the cotillion queen. Now Cirque de Nuit will launch the fundraising season, as several teams of volunteers will compete to raise funds through a number of benets throughout the year under the banner Atlanta Cotillion Presents. The team with the highest fundraising total will be announced at the following years ball. While this years ball is held in June, future events will be held earlier in the spring, organizers said. Since its inception, Cotillion has raised $1.2 million for AID Atlanta. Its imperative that we, those who can, help those infected and/or affected with HIV/AIDS those who dont have the means to help themselves, said Event Chair Darrell Burke. And isnt that what giving is all about? Cirque de Nuit means circus night, and attendees can expect aerialists, sword swallowers, contortionists, burlesque performers and live vocals to match the theme throughout the night. Therell be heavy hors doeuvres, complimentary bar, music by DJs Mike Pope and Todd Skelton, an appearance by lmmaker Del Shores, Blackjack tables and traditional silent auction.

Stephen Mosher and Pat Dwyer celebrate their wedding on the steps of the Supreme Court. (Publicity photo)



On these Shoulders We Stand June 11, 7 p.m. Landmark Midtown Art Cinema Married and Counting June 12, 7 p.m. Landmark Midtown Art Cinema




Cirque de Nuit June 8, 7 p.m. 1 a.m. Delta Heritage Museum Hangar

If you love to cry at weddings youd better bring a bucket to the June 12 screening of Married...and Counting, the story of actor Pat Dwyer and photographer Stephen Mosher celebrating their 25th anniversary of becoming college sweethearts by getting married in all the states where it was legal in 2010 and early 2011. Dwyer, Mosher and Director Allan Piper will attend the screening, so bring your questions too. Never has a lm been more eager to move from the Current Events shelf to History. Its already dated. When Stephen and Pat began in the fall of 2010 they only had six states and the District of Columbia to visit; the number of states has since doubled, and the Supreme Court could make the state-by-state procedure obsolete this month. At the time it was an important statement

for the men to make, both politically (the lm touches all those bases without becoming strident about it) and personally, as a demonstration of their love and a challenge to their notfully-accepting families. They also wanted the maximum amount of legal protection that we can get, having already gone through the needlessly complicated process of drawing up wills that would withstand probate. Their weddings involve a number of longtime friends and occasional strangers. When the Iowa wedding has to be moved up because of a threat to overturn the state supreme courts ruling, its held in the home of a friends chiropractors receptionists father! After seeing them marry in Vermont, New Hampshire, Iowa, Massachusetts, California (for symbolism sake) and (on their actual 25th anniversary, April 26, 2011) in front of the Supreme Court building in Washington, you may wonder as I did about Connecticut. A New York Times article reveals they had eloped there in 2009, before Piper started lming. The belated passage of marriage equality in Stephen and Pats home state of New York allows the lm a happy Coney Island coda. George Takei, may he live long and prosper, narrates to perfection, but my favorite line comes from Stephens mother, commenting on those who oppose marriage equality: People who wave their Bible need to read it more.




TUESDAY, JUNE 18: Braves fans come Out in the Stands




The Braves will host the third annual Out in the Stands LGBT fan night June 18 when the New York Mets come to town. Like last year, this years event will double as a fundraiser for Ben Cohens StandUp Foundation, which promotes LGBT equality in sports through public awareness campaigns, grants and other advocacy projects. Cohens foundation is headquartered in Atlanta. Cohen is most famous for being a former professional rugby player and Rugby World Cup winner with his native England. Last years event drew some 300 people to Turner Field. This years format is slightly different, however. There will be another patio reception, but no VIP box experience. Ben continues to love coming back to Atlanta; he has a very strong allegiance to the city, said StandUp Foundation Executive Director Alison Doerer. Were excited to advocate

Atlanta Braves Out in the Stands June 18, 7 p.m. Turner Field
for the community through sports. Another new addition will be the appearance of StandUp Foundation board member Billy Bean, a former professional baseball player who came out as gay in 1999. Bean played for several teams, most notably the San Diego Padres from 1993 to 1995. Five dollars from each ticket will go to the foundation. Three ticket tiers are available, from $48, $34 and $24. Each ticket includes a drink ticket and a meet-and-greet session with Cohen. Doerer said she hopes to exceed last years attendance. I would love to see 500 people there, at least. That would be my joy, she said.

Rugby superstar Ben Cohen will bring his StandUp Foundation to Turner Field June 18 for the 2013 Out in the Stands Atlanta Braves LGBT fan night. (Photo by Ryan Watkins)


JUNE 21 - 22
Augustas Pride fest returns for fourth year
By LAURA DOUGLAS-BROWN Augusta Pride expands this year to two days, offering an outdoor dance party the night before the fourth annual festival packs the Augusta Commons. Beats on Broad debuts on Friday evening, June 21, as DJ Kaos from Club One, the popular gay nightclub in Savannah, spins from 6-11 p.m. in what organizers bill as Augustas largest outdoor dance party. Cover is $5, and some festival vendors will already be set up and open for business. The next morning, Saturday, June 22, the Augusta Pride parade steps off at 10 a.m. to head down Broad Street to the Augusta Commons. The annual procession of decorated golf carts, trucks, oats and marchers draws crowds of cheering fans and usually a handful of anti-gay protesters. The parade ends at the Commons, where the Pride Festival continues until 7 p.m. Headlining entertainers include Thea Davis, Chad Michaels and Frenchie Davis, who is returning to Augusta after headlining the citys rst Pride festival in 2010. They will perform from 1-4


Pride Run steps off from Piedmont Park
By JIM FARMER Now an ofcial part of Atlanta Prides Stonewall Month, the Pride Run is gearing up for its 23rd annual event. A collaboration between Atlanta Pride and Front Runners, Atlantas LGBT runners group, the 5K run is set for June 22. The Pride Run has changed considerably since its early days, most notably in the number of competitors and the course, which has previously been held in areas such as Grant Park and Ansley before nding its current home beginning at Piedmont Park. Its also a more advanced race than it used to be. Over the years, we have worked to enhance the quality of certain elements of the race, said Front Runners President Bernie Colligan. We have an electronic timing system this year. The route has also been rened and its now a high quality one. Last year 400 people attended the race and Colligan hopes attendance tops 500 this year. The event brings out a mixture of serious runners, those who walk and those coming out for the cause or to watch, Colligan said. Almost all of his organizations members will be running the race or helping to organize it, he said, calling it Front Runners biggest event of the year. The Pride Run features mens and womThe Front Runners, Atlantas LGBT runners group, have made the Pride Run a Stonewall Month tradition. (Photo by Dyana Bagby)



After headlining the rst Augusta Pride in 2010, Frenchie Davis returns for the fourth annual festival this year. (Photo by Laura Douglas-Brown)

Pride Run June 22, 8 a.m. Piedmont Park

ens divisions, as well as age groups and medals for winners. Colligan estimates 75 percent of the participants are from the LGBT community but says the race is open to all. Last year marked the rst time the race was part of Prides Stonewall Month slate. His advice for those new to a run such as this is to be aware that its the last week of June in Atlanta and hot in the area. He strongly suggests using sunscreen and staying properly hydrated, starting the night before, and bringing plenty of water. The Pride Run will host a pre-event a week earlier a beer bust at FROGS Cantina at 3 p.m. on June 15 to raise money. Each year the Pride Run scours the community and takes requests to nd a beneciary. Money raised from the 2013 Pride Run will benet both Atlanta Pride and Lost-NFound Youth.



Augusta Pride June 21-22 Augusta Commons

p.m., followed by local entertainers until 6 p.m. The festival concludes with an after-party at Club Argos. Last years Augusta Pride drew an estimated crowd of 10,500, according to organizers, setting a new attendance record while still maintaining a close-knit community atmosphere. I think it was phenomenal, Augusta Pride President Travis Jenkins said in an interview as the festival ended. Our attendance went up by a third, our sales went up by a third, and I think everyone had a great time.





Pet Blessing honors four-legged friends and family
Congregation Bet Haverim also hosts Pride Seder June 28
By RYAN WATKINS Atlantas LGBT-founded synagogue Congregation Bet Haverim hosts two events during Atlantas Stonewall Month celebrations. The rst, a pet blessing and picnic at Mason Mill Park, will be held June 23. The pet blessing will be a unique event, said Bet Haverim Rabbi Rabbi Joshua Lesser, who is gay. LGBT people, especially those without children, often form a unique bond with their pets, Lesser added. In addition to more typical house pets, Lesser said any and all animals are welcome to the event. People can bring their goats, their ferrets, whatever as long as theyre appropriately leashed or in their appropriate containers. If you wanted to bring a snake, then bring your snake! The pet blessing was inspired by a similar event Lesser attended several years ago while on sabbatical in Hawaii. They showed me what to do, Lesser said. They asked me to come up to with an impromptu blessing after speaking to the owners. For me,

Rabbi Josh Lesser will lead a Pet Blessing ceremony on June 23, a new addition to Atlantas Stonewall Month calendar. (File photo)

Congregation Bet Haverim Pet Blessing June 23, 11-1 p.m. in Mason Mill Park Pride Seder June 28, 7 p.m. Central Congregational Church
it was really powerful. More than one of the people were ill or frail. One women in a wheelchair could barely walk and she cared more for the wellbeing of her dog than her own health. Congregation Bet Haverim and the Atlanta Pride Committee will also host the now-annual Pride Seder on June 28 at Central Congregational Church in Decatur. The theme of this years Seder is Are We There Yet? and will look at the current state of the LGBT civil rights movement. By the time we get to the Seder, well denitively have the [U.S.] Supreme Court decision, Lesser noted.

JUNE 21-23






Evening for Equality honors local leaders

Georgia Equalitys annual Evening for Equality Awards cap off Atlantas Stonewall Month. Scheduled for June 29 at Twelve Hotel in Atlantic Station, the event will honor members of the local community with three distinct awards. The Philip Rush Community Builder Award goes to the Lloyd Russell Foundation, whose executive director is Pamm Burdett. The foundation provides needed resources to struggling community organizations, said Jeff Graham, Georgia Equalitys executive director. Without their support, there would not be a Phillip Rush Center, Graham said. In addition, they have provided a safe base and acknowledge-

Evening for Equality June 29, 7 p.m. Twelve Hotel at Atlantic Station
ment for people who can be marginalized, such as the transgender and leather community. The Champion for Equality Award will be presented to Dazon Dixon Diallo, the founder and executive director of SisterLove, which has provided services to women since 1989, including providing help to women with HIV/AIDS. The other award recipient will be Anthony Michael Kreis, who will receive the Allen Thornell Political Achievement Award. Kreis is a doctoral student at the University of Georgia specializing in sexual orientation, public policy, social change and the law, and is a volunteer lobbyist for Georgia Equality. The annual gala also serves as a reminder of all that Georgia Equality is involved in. It recognizes the work being done and also raises funds to do work statewide, Graham said.


Insiders History of Atlantas GLBTQ Community and Pride Festival 11 a.m. @ Open Door Community Presented by Metro Atlanta Democratic Socialists of America Cirque de Nuit 7 p.m. @ Delta Heritage Museum Hanger Presented by Atlanta Cotillion, benetting AID Atlanta

Atlanta marks National LGBT Pride Month to recall the riots that started it all
Though the traditional Pride season occurs during June to coincide with the anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, the Atlanta Pride festival has been held in October for the past four years after drought concerns and city regulations displaced it from summer in Piedmont Park. Atlanta Pride will be held Oct. 11-13, but Pride organizers have also made an effort to coordinate and publicize a schedule of events during the traditional Pride month now dubbed Stonewall Month here. While many in our community bemoan our move to October for the Atlanta Pride Festival, we are excited to commemorate the anniversary of the 1969 riots at the Stonewall Inn with a robust offering of educational programs, social gatherings, and community activities that run the gamut of the LGBTQ community in Atlanta, said Atlanta Pride Executive Director Buck Cooke. In June 1969, patrons at a gay bar called the Stonewall Inn in New York City fought back against police harassment in what is viewed as the start of the modern LGBT rights movement. Pride festivals around the country sprung up the next year to commemorate the riot. Atlanta held its rst Pride march in 1971, when about 100 people marched down Peachtree Street to Piedmont Park. Many of the 2013 events announced by the




Augusta Pride Parade 10 a.m. Festival 11 a.m. 7 p.m. Augusta Commons Presented by Augusta Pride Atlanta Freedom Bands Our American Journey concert 8 p.m. @ Saint Mark United Methodist Church MASH ATTACKS! Party 10 p.m. @ Atlanta Eagle Benetting Atlanta Pride Committee

Dine Out for Pride, 5 - 10 p.m. Gilberts, HOBNOB, 10th & Piedmont Presented by Communitas Hospitality, benetting Atlanta Pride Committee

Pet Blessing and Picnic 11 a.m. @ Mason Mill Park Presented by Congregation Bet Haverim

On These Shoulders We Stand screening 7 p.m. @ Landmark Midtown Art Cinema Presented by Touching Up Our Roots and Atlanta Pride Committee

Dine Out for Pride, 5 - 10 p.m. Gilberts, HOBNOB, 10th & Piedmont Presented by Communitas Hospitality, benetting Atlanta Pride Committee

Dine Out for Pride, 5 - 10 p.m. Doc Cheys Noodle House (Emory) Presented by HomeGrown Restaurants, benetting Atlanta Pride Committee Married and Counting screening 7 p.m. @ Landmark Midtown Art Cinema Presented by Out on Film and Atlanta Pride Committee

Dine Out for Pride, 5 - 10 p.m. Doc Cheys Noodle House (Morningside) Presented by HomeGrown Restaurants, benetting Atlanta Pride Committee

Atlanta Pride Night featuring ChiChi LaRue 10 p.m. @ BJ Roosters Benetting Atlanta Pride Committee

Zach Wahls, who was raised by lesbian moms, made national headlines in 2011 when, at age 19, he testied before the Iowa House Judiciary Committee against legislation to ban gay marriage. He reads from his memoir, My Two Moms, in Atlanta on June 27. (Publicity photo)

Zach Wahls reading and book signing 7 p.m. @ Friends School Sanctuary Presented by Charis Books and More/Charis Circle, the Friends School of Atlanta and the Atlanta Pride Committee

Atlanta Gay Mens Chorus Big Gay Sing 6 p.m. @ Jungle East Point Possums Show 7 p.m. @ The East Point Commons Presented by the East Point Possums, benetting Lost-N-Found Youth

Atlanta Pride Committee, like the annual East Point Possums drag show and Georgia Equalitys Evening for Equality, are June staples. Other events, like the Pet Blessing and a series of events on LGBT history, are new or expanded this year.

Pride Seder 7 p.m. @ Central Congregational Church Presented by Congregation Bet Haverim Singing Out Proud: Living the Legacy 8 p.m. @ Glenn Memorial Auditorium Presented by the Atlanta Gay Mens Chorus Stonewall Party Time TBA @ 10th & Piedmont Presented by Communitas Hospitality, benetting Atlanta Pride Committee

Out in the Stands at Turner Field: Atlanta Braves vs. New York Mets 5-7 p.m. pre-game meet-and-greet with Ben Cohen 7 p.m. rst pitch @ Turner Field Benetting the Ben Cohen StandUp Foundation. Tickets: 404-614-1325,

GALA Celebrates the Emory LGBT Archives 6:30 p.m. @ Woodruff Library, Emory University Presented by Emory Gay & Lesbian Alumni and the Emory University Manuscripts & Rare Books Library

Legal clinic for same sex couples (Part 2 of 2) 11 a.m.-4 p.m. @ the Rush Center Presented by Georgia Benets Counsel and the Atlanta Pride Committee

Criminalization & Queer Rebellion: A Multi-Generational Discussion 6:30-8:30 p.m. @ Little 5 Points Community Center Presented by JustUs Atl

Dine Out for Pride, 5-10 p.m. Osteria 832 Pizza and Pasta (Virginia Highland) Presented by HomeGrown Restaurants, benetting Atlanta Pride Committee Big Gay Game Show 8 p.m. @ Jungle Benets Lost-N-Found Youth, Inc.

Ninth Annual Evening for Equality 7 p.m. @ Twelve Hotel at Atlantic Station Presented by and benetting Georgia Equality Atlanta Gay Mens Chorus Singing Out Proud: Living the Legacy 2 p.m. & 8 p.m. @ Glenn Memorial Auditorium

Dine Out for Pride, 5 - 10 p.m. Gilberts, HOBNOB, 10th & Piedmont Presented by Communitas Hospitality, benetting Atlanta Pride Committee

Pride Run 8 a.m. @ Piedmont Park Presented by Front Runners




General Admission $75 VIP Individual $150 VIP Couple $250 THE 2013 EQUALITYAWARDS
Phillip Rush Community Builder Award: The Lloyd Russel Foundation Champion for Equality: Dazon Dixon Diallo Allen Thornell Political Advancement Award: Anthony Michael Kreis


Your nancial needs are unique.

Whether you want to provide for your loved ones, support the organizations that are important to you, or plan for your own comfortable retirement, I can help you plan for your goals. Ill look at all aspects of your nances, then nd solutions that are right for your unique needs. And as your goals and needs change, Ill be there to adjust your plan and help put your dreams within reach. Our Advisors. Your Dreams. MORE WITHIN REACH

Call me today at (404) 913.9133

Allen Shpigel, AWMA, CRPC, CLTC Financial Advisor Accredited Domestic Partnership Advisor An Ameriprise Platinum Financial Services practice 7000 Peachtree Dunwoody Rd. Ne Bldg. 6-350 Atlanta, GA 30328 404-913-9133 allen.a.shpigel
Brokerage, investment and financial advisory services are made available through Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc. Member FINRA and SIPC. Some products and services may not be available in all jurisdictions or to all clients. Ameriprise Financial cannot guarantee future financial results. 2013 Ameriprise Financial, Inc. All rights reserved.

tickets and information:




Inserection owner seeks to unseat Alex Wan from City Council


A brawl over Cheshire Bridge Road

A brawl may be brewing in the aftermath of the controversial legislation proposed by Atlanta City Councilmember Alex Wan to oust several adult businesses lining Cheshire Bridge Road. The council rejected Wans proposals in a 9 to 6 vote on June 3, ending months of sometimes bitter debate between residents living in the area and those who own and work at the businesses targeted by Wans proposed zoning ordinances. But another battle may just be beginning. Michael Morrison, owner of Inserection on Cheshire Bridge Road, said he is pleased with the councils vote, but he is not condent something similar wont come up in the near future if Wan remains on the council. So Morrison plans to run against Wan, the City Councils only openly gay member, using his own money if nobody else throws their hat in the ring. An announcement could come as soon as next week, Morrison said. All members of the council are up for election in November. Alex Wan is not our candidate. We are business owners and we have a voice, too, he told the GA Voice on June 4. Morrison said he and other Cheshire Bridge business owners targeted by Wans proposed legislation have been talking about backing a candidate to oppose Wan for some time and continued the conversation late into the night after the council vote. Were a permanent part of the landscape, Morrison said of adult businesses. He was able to take his personal views and push forward this legislation that is not going to happen in this election.

Above: Michael Morrison, owner of Inserection on Cheshire Bridge Road and other adult businesses including a gay club in Miami, said he will run against Alex Wan if no one else steps forward. (Photo by Dyana Bagby) Left: Atlanta City Councilmember Alex Wan may draw a reelection challenge after his legislation to oust several adult businesses along Cheshire Bridge Road was rejected by fellow council members. (Photo by Dyana Bagby)


Morrison is not afraid of a ght. As an owner of several successful adult businesses that cater to LGBT and straight customers in metro Atlanta and a gay club opened last year in Miami, he has a permanent bulls-eye painted on his back and is accustomed to city ofcials and residents living near his clubs wanting to shut down his stores. Going to court to ght to keep his businesses open is part of the job. In the mid 1990s he was arrested in Atlanta on obscenity charges and police raided his stores several times. Eventually he helped strike down the states obscenity law in a time known by some as the dildo wars.

But he also ran into legal issues and in February 2005, Morrison was convicted of tax evasion and spent nearly three years in a federal prison. Interestingly, he served time with former Atlanta Mayor Bill Campbell, who instigated police raids of Morrisons shops. Campbell was also found guilty of tax evasion, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. I may not be electable, but a vote for me is a vote against Alex Wan, Morrison said. Morrison said he is prepared to spend $150,000 in this election to try to defeat Wan. Wans campaign had almost $49,000 in cash on hand as of March 31, the date of the latest nancial disclosure statement. This amount does not include money raised at an upscale LGBT fundraiser on April 25 where many of the citys gay elite served on the host committee.


Wans proposed legislation angered many in the LGBT community who accused him of betraying his own community by going after sex shops and strip clubs. Cheshire Bridge has a long history serving as Atlantas red light district and was where the rst gay clubs opened and several continue to operate. Now that the vote is over, Wan wants people to understand he was trying to serve his

constituency, those who live in District 6. This effort was never meant to anger the LGBT community, and I recognize that it did with some. I absolutely appreciate the history the community shares with Cheshire Bridge, which is why I made sure any strategy would not negatively impact the bars and clubs either in this corridor or elsewhere, Wan said. I am sorry if folks feel my targeting the adult businesses has undone all of the community work that I have done for the overall LGBT movement. News that Morrison or some other candidate may oppose him doesnt worry Wan too much, he said. I will be prepared if this issue prompts someone to run against me this fall. I believe I have served the constituents of District 6 very well on a broad range of issues, and I would look forward to putting that record up against any potential opponent, he said.


Voting in favor of Wans legislation were Wan, Carla Smith, Keisha Bottoms, Michael Julian Bond, Aaron Watson and H. Lamar Willis. Voting against were Kwanza Hall, Ivory Lee Young, Cleta Winslow, Natalyn Archibong, Howard Shook, Yolanda Adrean, Felicia Moore, C.T. Martin and Joyce Sheperd. Jane Rawlings, chair of Neighborhood Planning Unit F, which strongly backed Wans

legislation, was dismayed with the vote. I was hoping to gain councils support in rectifying the bad zoning which allows adult businesses to exist in the back yards of our communitys residences. Such incompatible uses should not lie in such close proximity to one another and result in sustained, negative impacts for surrounding neighborhoods, she said. Wan had urged his fellow council members to vote in favor of his proposed legislation, noting that the idea to rid the Cheshire Bridge corridor of a proliferation of sex shops and strip clubs originated in 1999 with a task force. That task forces vision was then adopted by the City Council in 2005. A no vote to me shows your willingness to allow six or seven businesses to continue dictating and negatively impacting thousands and thousands of community stakeholders; not just residents but businesses too, Wan said at the meeting. District 2 Councilmember Kwanza Hall said he voted no because of the unintended consequences on multiple other districts. He was also uncomfortable with zoning out non-conforming businesses that were grandfathered in by the city. If you have an operating businesses and just close them down if you do that for one type of business you can do that for others, Hall said. This [legislation] opens the door and sets a precedent.




Team Friendly Atlanta seeks t-shirt design

New logo to address HIV stigma, spark ongoing dialogue

By DYANA BAGBY Team Friendly Atlanta wants to start a community-wide conversation about HIV stigma in a way thats interesting and fashionable. The new organization that aims to dispel HIV bias is sponsoring a t-shirt design contest open to the public. Submissions for the contest begin June 6 with the top ve being selected by July 8. The public will choose the winner by July 18. We wanted to bring up the topic of stigma and what causes it, why people are not disclosing their status, are not conding in their friends, are not seeking services. This stigma has been going on as long as there has been HIV but weve not dealt with it like when it was rst discovered, said Randy Prophater, a founding member of Team Friendly Atlanta. We wanted to do something that wasnt an event but to have an ongoing dialogue, albeit through graphic design. Team Friendlys logo a smiley face with positive and negative signs for an eye and nose is very distinct. Prophater said he hopes graphic designers can capture a more subtle emblem to express HIV and the stigma surrounding it that will still spark conversations when people see it. I think the Mr. Friendly logo is an incredible design. But were hoping [the new design] starts a conversation in more subtle way than a Mr. Friendly design shirt does, he said. When the winning design is selected, Ruff Riders will print the shirts and they will be distributed by gay-fave retailer Boy Next Door for $20-$25, Prophater said. Dimensions are 11 by 11 . More details can be found on Team Friendly Atlantas website.

The board of Team Friendly Atlanta is, from left, Antonio Garza, Don Melville, Dylan West, Nitro Hankinson and Randy Prophater. (Photo by Dyana Bagby) The Mr. Friendly logo easily conveys a message of combating HIV stigma. Team Friendly Atlantas t-shirt design contest seeks a new, more subtle design. (Logo design by Dave Watt)



Team Friendly Atlanta T-Shirt Design Contest Submissions begin June 6 Send to Or drop at Boy Next Door File: 300 dpi, 11 3/4 x 11 3/4 (PDF or Illustrator) All media accepted (sketch, drawing)

50% off the first 2 months! *

[The shirt] will have our logo and be specic to our team. And we will be promoting it through social media. The shirt will denitely have an Atlanta are to it but not limited to only Atlantans, he explained. But how does a t-shirt help ght HIV stigma? For me, its about the actual campaign and everything that leads up to it, Prophater said. As designers sit in front of their sketch pads or computer screens and talk to others about what they are doing, asking for input and suggestions all of this leads contributes to ongoing dialogue about HIV stigma, he extplained. Then when people wear a t-shirt with this design and someone asks about it, the dialogue continues with more people. The idea for the t-shirt design contest is borrowed from Chandler Bearden, an outreach specialist with the MISTER Project of Positive Impact, Prophater said. Positive Impact provides mental health and culturally appropriate services to those with HIV. By opening up a design contest to the public, Prophater said he hopes all people in the community feel they have ownership and feel they are a part of Team Friendly.

Atlantas Choice for Self Storage

n n n n n

Humidity & temperature controlled 24-hour surveillance Over 90 security cameras Clean indoor environment Small to large spaces

n n n n n

Covered loading area Business & personal storage After hours access Packing supplies available U-Haul truck rental

Emory/VaHi 404.888.9688
1248 Zonolite Road, Atlanta, GA 30306
* Restrictions may apply.



JUNE 4 7:30PM wednesday, June 26 symphony hall

at the woodruff arts center Box office FOX THEATRE and ticketmaster
Steve Litman & Fox Events Present

tickets on sale now

Supreme Court countdown




Historic gay marriage decisions expected to come late this month

By LAURA DOUGLAS-BROWN and LISA KEEN The U.S. Supreme Court will issue decisions this month that could change the ght for marriage equality for a generation or more. The last scheduled session for the current Supreme Court term is June 24. At press time June 4, gay marriage supporters and opponents alike were anxiously watching the court for decisions that could impact marriage rights for same-sex couples in California and around the country. Meanwhile, activists around the country are For immediate coverage the day the planning Day of Decidecisions are announced: sion demonstrations, including a gathering Like us on Facebook scheduled for the corner of 10th Street and Pied Follow us on Twitter mont Avenue in Atlanta. Regardless of what On the eve of the U.S. Supreme Court hearings on two marriage equality cases, LGBT activists gathered March 25 at the Georgia Capitol. Another gathering is those decisions entail, Visit expected at 5 p.m. on the day decisions are announced, this time at the corner of 10th and Piedmont. (Photo by Ryan Watkins) this will be a historic date for the LGBT community now 83 years old, marand will have a great imRomer v. Evans, the 1996 ruling that overThe three more conservative members are Atlanta LGBT groups will start gatherried her partner of more turned Colorados Amendment 2, a ballot mea- generally seen as Justices Antonin Scalia, Clarpact on the ongoing struging at the corner of 10th and Piedthan four decades, Thea sure that prevented gay people from being ence Thomas and Samuel Alito. gle for equality in Georgia mont at 5 p.m. on the day of decision. Spyer, in Canada in recognized as a protected class by any governand around the country, Chief Justice John Roberts voted with the 2007. When Spyer died ment entity, was also decided on a 6-3 vote. reads an open letter to the conservative trio nine times out of 10. in 2009, Windsor was LGBT community signed Justice Anthony Kennedy could be a key The tightest voting pair on the court these by leaders of eight local LGBT and LGBT-sup- hit with an inheritance tax bill of more than vote among the current justices on the mar- days is comprised of Justices Sotomayor and $360,000, which she would not have owed if the riage equality cases. Statistically speaking, Kagan (also the two newest members of the portive organizations. Knowing that there will be those in the government recognized her marriage. theres a better chance he will vote with the court), voting similarly in 19 out of 22 cases. Both cases could have broad impacts on four more liberal justices on the court in the community who will want to gather together The three female justices, all on the more libon that date to express our joy or our outrage, same-sex marriage rights around the coun- upcoming marriage decisions than he will eral wing, have voted together 18 out of 22 times. leaders of the groups acknowledged that the try, or end in narrow rulings or even signi- with the more conservative ones. Thomas and Alito have voted the same in corner of 10th and Piedmont has been the site cant losses. Out of 22 decisions issued thus far this ses- 17 out of 22 cases. Based on analysis of the questioning dur- sion in which the nine-member court has of similar gathering in the past and commitThe surprise might be how many times ted to work with area business owners to en- ing oral arguments, many court observ- split, the courts four more liberal justices have the justices have all agreed. Out of a total of 46 sure that any spontaneous gathering is safe ers think it is more likely that the court will stuck together on 14 (the count would be 15 but decisions, they have agreed on a unanimous strike down the Defense of Marriage Act in the for one case in which one justice recused). and accessible for all. result 24 times. The letter was signed by representatives of Windsor case which could require the fedKennedy, widely considered the unpreFormer Justice John Paul Stevens, 93, who reAtlanta Pride, Georgia Equality, Lambda Legal, eral government to recognize legal same-sex dictable swing vote in the two marriage deci- tired from the high court three years ago after 35 Congregation Bet Haverim, Gentle Spirit Chris- marriages than that the justices will issue a sions pending, voted with those four liberal years of service, recently offered his prediction tian Church, Love Under Fire, Saint Mark Unit- broad ruling in the California case that would justices eight times nine times if one counts for what the court will do on the two landmark ed Methodist Church and the Atlanta Sisters of immediately allow gay couples to marry the decision in which one of the liberals did marriage equality cases pending before it. around the country. Perpetual Indulgence. not participate. Stevens said he thinks the court will disThe Supreme Court heard arguments in The four justices generally regarded as more miss the Yes on 8 appeal of the Proposition 8 Hollingsworth v. Perry, a challenge to Propo- COUNTING VOTES liberal are Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Ste- case out of California on procedural issues, sition 8, the ballot measure that ended sameThere are nine Supreme Court justices, phen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor and Ruth Kagan. and nd the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) sex marriage in California, on March 26. meaning it takes ve votes to reach a decision. Justice Breyer recused himself from one case. unconstitutional. The next day, the court heard Windsor v. By comparison, the three most conservaPrior to the marriage cases, the most sigA dismissal of the Prop 8 case on procedural United States, a challenge to the Defense of Mar- nicant Supreme Court decision on gay rights tive members stuck together in split decisions issues could allow gay couples to resume marriage Act, the 1996 law that denies federal mar- the 2003 ruling in Lawrence v. Texas that struck 10 times. Kennedy has voted with them only rying in California, but would not have an imriage rights to same-sex couples. Edith Windsor, down sodomy laws was decided on a 6-3 vote. ve times. mediate impact beyond the state.

Decision day






Trans Navy SEAL, Illinois stalls on marriage, and more

In a move that LGBT advocates hope will dispel stereotypes about transgender people in the military, Kristin Beck who was known as Chris Beck when serving in the Navys elite SEAL unit comes out as transgender in her new memoir, Warrior Princess. Although the militarys Dont Ask, Dont Tell ban on openly gay service members was repealed in 2011, openly transgender people are still barred. Beck writes in her memoir that she has received support from other former SEALS. The book was published June 1 by Advances Press.


The Illinois House of Representatives adjourned May 31 without voting on a bill to extend marriage rights to same-sex couples, halting a string READ of victories that saw six states apMORE ON after the vote. prove marriage equality in the past six months. The statement also noted that The Illinois bill could next any sexual conduct, whether come up for a vote in November, heterosexual or homosexual, by when the legislature convenes for youth of Scouting age is contrary a veto session. to the virtues of Scouting. Some LGBT activists wanted the More @ May 31 vote, but bill sponsor Rep. Greg Harris, who is gay, said he decided to wait after gay FIRST OPENLY GAY BISHOP FOR LUTHERANS rights opponents launched a last minute media The Evangelical Lutheran Church in Amercampaign that he feared weakened support for ica has elected Rev. R. Guy Erwin as bishop of the bill. If a bunch of people had voted no, then the Southwest California Synod. The May 31 it becomes incredibly difcult then to change vote makes Erwin the rst openly gay bishop those votes to yes should it come back later, in the denomination. Harris told the Washington Blade. In these days such milestones seem to be coming at an ever-faster rate, and eventually what seems revolutionary now will seem norBOY SCOUTS TO ALLOW OPENLY GAY mal and predictable, Erwin said in an interYOUTH, BUT NOT LEADERS The Boy Scouts of America will nally allow view with CNN. openly gay scouts, after the organizations leadThe vote caps years of struggle within ELCA ership voted May 23 to embrace a change in pol- on lesbian and gay issues. In 2009, the deicy that will see openly gay scouts on Jan. 1, 2014. nomination nally lifted its ban on partnered The vote comes after the organization was the gay clergy, which had sparked national consubject of heated controversy over its gay ban. troversy when it led to the ouster and church The Boy Scouts of America will not sac- trial of Rev. Bradley Schmeling, then leader of rice its mission, or the youth served by the Atlantas St. Johns Lutheran Church. movement, by allowing the organization to be Schmeling, who was reinstated after the consumed by a single, divisive, and unresolved policy change, now serves as pastor of Gloria societal issue, BSA leaders said in a statement Dei Lutheran Church in St. Paul, Minn.






The Last Decision You Make for Your Pet is Just as Important as the First.
Same day service. No waiting. You can take your pets ashes home tonight. Each pet is cremated ALONE, guaranteed by our PetTracker360SM system, which ensures that you receive your pets ashes. State-of-the-Art facility where families can plan, grieve, and commemorate their pets.
2800 E. Ponce de Leon Ave. Decatur, GA 30030

MAIN LOCATION: Faithful Friends Campus

1591 Access Road Covington, GA 30016

404.370.6000 770.385.0222

Family Owned & Operated

SING, not preach

By SHANNON HAMES Joan Baez. The name conjures images of a hippie-era folk musician who performed at the legendary Woodstock concert (while pregnant) and dated fellow musician Bob Dylan. Her renditions of songs like Diamonds & Rust, The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down and We Shall Overcome remain iconic to this day. But Joan Baez, now 71, is still going strong. She just kicked off a tour this week and will have 10 special shows where she will perform with Atlantas own Indigo Girls, including shows at Atlantas Chastain Park Amphitheater June 14-15. The concerts wont be the rst time Baez collaborated with Indigo Girls Amy Ray and Emily Saliers. The three have performed together since back in the early 1990s. They also recorded Dont Think Twice, Its Alright together for Baez album Ring Them Bells, on which Baez also covered Indigo Girls Welcome Me. The Georgia Voice caught up with Joan and spoke with her about her current tour, her activism and even her sexuality. Georgia Voice: What a perfect musical match between you and the Indigo Girls! Talk about your upcoming shows together. Joan Baez: I cant wait. Ive played with them before and weve even performed as a trio. We have gone on stage with each other during our sets and done songs together. I havent seen them in a while so Im excited to see how this will go. I really love them. The Indigo Girls have more than music in common with you I know you both have a long record of social activism. What are you passionate about right now?




on music,
activism and kissing a girl

Folk legend Joan Baez (right) performs June 14-15 at Chastain Park Amphitheatre with Indigo Girls Amy Ray and Emily Saliers. (Baez photo by Dana Tynan; Indigo Girls publicity photo)
Painting and taking care of my mom have been my passions over the last few years. My mom just passed away on April 20, just a few days after she turned 100. I think its a lot more important for people to know that right now, Im not more involved in things than I really am. Ive slowed down a lot so that I could enjoy that time with my mom and to paint. But Ive always been involved with non-violent foundations. At this point in my life, I just want to get on stage to sing, not preach. One thing that I can tell you is that I think the most vital social issue of our lifetime is climate change. Every other issue pales in comparison. What will it matter in 20 years what this political party does or how that marginalized group gets treated if the world is destroyed because we keep abusing it? Political quarrels will not matter because we wont be here to care about those things. The earth will go on but the human race wont last. Ive never been an optimist. Ive always felt very grim about what we do as a human race. What do you think people who care about issues can do to be more involved? It seems like its always the same thing people feel like their voice is too small to make a difference so they are apathetic. Yes, it seems like the pattern is little victories, big defeats sometimes. I think that whatever you want to do to being



Joan Baez & Indigo Girls June 14-15, 7 p.m. Chastain Park Amphitheatre

kindness, decency and love into the world, you should do that. And celebrate each small victory as if it were a big one. Just do what you can, whatever that is. Youve been in a few relationships but I read in one of your biographies that you once said after your divorce that you thought you just werent meant to be with someone that you felt that you were just not cut out for a relationship. Is that how you feel now? I dont have a partner right now. I live on a property surrounded by friends and my mom lived there. She wanted to spend

her nal years in the woods surrounded by nature. Someone once said to me that one of the things that they loved about my music was that I could do a live show with thousands of people and make it feel so intimate. I can do that. I can be in a room with 2,000 people and it is quite intimate. But I just cant seem to do that with one person. You have a son are you close with him? Yes! ... Hes my percussionist. This is an LGBT magazine so I have to ask at least one gay question. That sounds fun! Have you ever kissed a girl? Yes, I did. I was 21. Did you like it? I have to tell the truth. It was one of the most wonderful experiences in my life.








Twisted Dee : 9 p.m. 3 a.m. @ The Heretic


Peach Pride: Tony Moran with Corey David 4-9 p.m. @ Piedmont Park dock

The Peach Ball: Paulo with Russ Rich 9 p.m. 3 a.m. @ Jungle Club

Afterhours: Manny Lehman 3-8 a.m. @ Xion


David Knapp: 12:30-5 p.m. @ Las Margaritas The Peach Tea: Alyson Calagna w/ Martin Fry 7 p.m. 12 a.m. @ Jungle
Publicity photos

reak out your dancing shoes. The second annual Peach Party weekend is ready to get all of Atlanta on its feet. The three-day event, from June 1416, boasts nine of the most impressive and popular circuit DJs in the world. Peach Party gives Atlanta a chance to compete in the international circuit party scene during the summer months, Keith Young, co-owner of GA Boy Productions, tells GA Voice. In the past decade, with the annual Pride events being moved to the fall, travel to the city, for those hoping for a dance weekend, has obviously suffered, Young says. Getting folks excited about coming or staying in the city for the weekend helps the overall reputation of what people can expect from Atlanta all year around. The event will feature six different parties and ve different venues. Young said that no matter your taste in music, Peach Party has something for everyone. The excitement kicks off with Twisted Dee at the Heretic on Friday, June 14, from 9 p.m. to 3 a.m. Dance music lovers are also in for a special treat on Saturday, June 15, with a free daytime dance party dockside at Piedmont Park. Corey David and international DJ/Producer Tony Moran will spin from the dock from 4 to 9 p.m. as dancers party the day away on the grass. After David and Moran get you revved up, head over to the Peach Ball, taking place at Jungle from 9 p.m. to 3 a.m. where youll be treated to the unique and popular tribal sounds of Paulo. Paulo descends on Atlanta just a few days removed from Pride in Los Angeles. The multiple Billboard number one

remixer and 2011 Just Circuit DJ/ Producer/Remixer of the year is guaranteed to have Atlantans dancing and sweating just like hes done to crowds worldwide. Jungle owner Richard Cherskov is excited for his club to play host for the Peach Party Weekend. With huge events in Pensacola, Miami and Orlando, Fla., just nishing up, Cherskov and his crew are ready to help throw one heck of a party weekend and expect capacity crowds. This event really is a GA Boy and Keith Young production theyve put it all together, Cherskov says. Were just here to make sure everyone has a good time. Cherskov expects another capacity crowd this year, hoping the success of last years event will piggyback into this year. We just did a remodel and are still putting the nishing touches from the last seven months, Cherskov says. Party goers can expect the best sound, the best lights and the best club experience for gay people in Atlanta. If the Peach Ball wasnt enough, Afterhours with Manny Lehman at Xion will be the place to go as Saturday night turns to Sunday morning. Starting at 3 a.m. and going until 8, Mannys high-energy music will have your morning starting off better than any Mimosa ever could. But, if its Mimosas and music youre searching for, then brunch from 12:30 to 5


p.m. at Las Margaritas was meant for you. Eat and drink while you enjoy the sounds of the original circuit DJ David Knapp. The weekend wraps up with a Sunday tradition. Jungle hosts a Peach Tea starting at 7 p.m. that continues on until midnight. Martin Fry starts things off with his progressive synths and deep tribal percussions. After headlining Atlanta Pride in 2009, Fry is sure to know what the crowd expects. Miami resident Alyson Calagna closes the night and weekend out by bringing her original Omtronica sounds through the speakers at Jungle. A pioneer in the style, Calagnas unique blend of modern beats and organic sounds have made her a headlining favorite in some of the biggest venues in the world.


Directory Listings





Childs play
Stued toy prompts playwrights reection on LGBT equality
An inanimate childs toy becomes the source of family crisis in the new gay-themed play The Boy and the Pink Bear, making its world premiere June 20 here in Atlanta. The second play by local writer Ted Johnson turns on an innocent act: A ve-year-old African-American boy starts playing with a beloved possession, a pink bear. His father, Jake, does not react well, projecting that this means that the kid will grow up to become gay. What Jake doesnt realize initially is that his brother Bill is dealing with his own household issues his star football player son is involved with another man. The two brothers do not have a strong relationship and theres an eventual tragedy before the entire family is able to come together and make some sort of peace. The Boy and the Pink Bear is based on a real experience where Johnsons own son 16 months old at the time started playing with a pink bear. Being an alpha male, I didnt react well, he admits. My girlfriend walked in and tapped me on the head. My behavior was outrageous and many people would have behaved in the same way. To me, it brings up the proverbial question if my son were gay how would I react, would I love him unconditionally? Johnson feels that coming out is hard for anyone, but is particularly difcult in the African-American community where religion is such an important factor. He doesnt have any gay people in his own family yet, he says, although he thinks it is inevitable. Although Johnson is not gay, he thinks sexual orientation is something society needs to accept. People do need to be judged by their character and who they are, he says. A lawyer whose rst play dealt with Christianity, Johnson hopes to take this show to Charlotte next and then to California.




Above: The Boy and the Pink Bear tackles homophobia through a familys reaction to a young boys favorite toy. (Photo by Kat Goduco)Left: Serenbe Playhouse brings The Velveteen Rabbit to its unique outdoor setting, starting June 7. (Courrtesy photo)

The Boy and the Pink Bear June 20 - 23 Southwest Performing Arts Center 915 New Hope Road, Atlanta, GA 30331 The Velveteen Rabbit June 7 July 27 Serenbe Playhouse 9110 Selborne Lane, Suite 210, Chattahoochee Hills, GA 30268 The Cat in the Hat June 13 July 28 Center for Puppetry Arts 1404 Spring St., Atlanta, GA 30309

On Stage
Seminar Through June 16 at Actors Express Gay director Freddie Ashley helms this tale of four writers getting more than they bargained for during a writing class lead by a world-class author. The Book Club Play Through June 23 at Horizon Theatre A closeted gay man is part of the ensemble in this comedy about six friends/colleagues whose book club proceedings become part of a documentary.


Serenbe Playhouses three-play summer season gets underway this weekend with a new adaptation of The Velveteen Rabbit, directed by Brian Clowdus, the companys artistic director. Serenbe Playhouse uses outdoor settings to stage their productions and the director feels exterior locations are perfect for this work. Rachel Teagle has adapted the original

story by Margery Williams and modernized it. Its been updated to a Civil War-era Savannah, where a young boy gets a gift of a stuffed rabbit from his nanny. Gay audiences can relate, Clowdus feels, to the story of an unconventional family here. The character of the Bunny, too, is identiable: He has long been ostracized and gets the courage to accept himself for who he is and that he can be loved, says Clowdus, who is gay and also directs Serenbes upcoming version of Hair. Finally, when the Center for Puppetry Arts debuts a new version of The Cat in the Hat next week, it does so with a gay actor in the cast Aaron Gotlieb, who portrays The Fish. The actor, who has been a regular at the Center for many years now, feels gay and straight audiences, as well as children and adults, will enjoy Jon Ludwigs adaptation of the Dr. Seuss classic.


Shakespeare Follies June 15 at Arts Exchange This bawdy romp through Shakespeares The Tempest features jugglers, dancers, drummers and more.
It is everyones rainy afternoon story a universe to ll, the house to keep you going when you are ve and are your parents are away, says Gotlieb. The character of The Fish acts somewhat as the voice of reason, says the actor, when the Cat character enters the picture and almost literally turns the house upside down. The Cat in the Hat was originally produced by the National Theatre of Great Britain before heading to the U.S.

Ellen is richer than you, Glee star comes out, Lauryn Hill and Amanda Bynes are nuts, ATLs Equally Family, and more




Publicity photo via Facebook

Its a rote celebrity story rich people buying a fancy new house but we cant help but smile when the celebrities in question are comedian and talk show host Ellen DeGeneres and her wife, actress Portia de Rossi. Thats partly because DeGeneres is so cute and quirky she makes everyone smile, and partly because the inclusion of gay couples in these kinds of stories is further proof of how far our society is coming toward acceptance of LGBT families. Media outlets from the LA Times to NBC reported this week that DeGeneres and De Rossi have purchased a Tuscan-style home in Montecito listed at $26.5 million. It was treated as simple celebrity news, not controversy. In other Ellen news, however, we were a bit bummed to hear De Rossi reveal that creators of Arrested Development had wanted DeGeneres to appear in the fourth season, but it didnt work out. I would want her to play herself, said De Rossi, who plays Lindsay Bluth on the popular show, according to a report from Australian media outlet



CC 2.0/ChasterUnit0

Charice Pempengco, the Filipino singer and actress who plays Sunshine Corazon on the Fox hit Glee, told a Filipino talk show June 2 that she is a lesbian. I dont know what the problem is because for me, there is no problem with that, she told The Buzz, according to the Hollywood Reporter. So now I ask for forgiveness from those who dont understand. And those who cannot accept. I apologize: I understand you.


R&B singer Lauryn Hill, who will soon report to prison for three months for tax evasion, took to Tumblr on June 1 to respond to controversy over her song Neurotic Society, Hufngton Post reported. Critics have called the song anti-gay over lyrics like Quick scam and drag queens / Real lifes been blasphemed and references to girl men and social transvestism. Via her Tumblr, Hill said the song is not targeting any particular group of people, but rather targeting everyone in our society who hides behind neurotic behavior, rather than deal with it. She continued, The whole world suffers from a lack of honest dialogue. Character and integrity have suffered at the hands of political correctness and corporate agenda, while our society moves further and further towards unhealthiness and breakdown. I oppose these trends.


Club by Benjamin Alire Saenz. Thrity Umrigar won the Lesbian General Fiction category with The World We Found. The award for Transgender Fiction went to The Collection: Short Fiction From The Transgender Vanguard, edited by Tom Lger and Riley MacLeod. Visit for the full list of nalists and winners. Among the latest to announce is out musician Brandi Carlile, who plays Chastain Park Amphitheatre on July 27 as part of Live Nations Concert Series B. Tickets to the series are on sale now; individual shows go on sale Saturday, June 15. Other big upcoming shows of LGBT interest include Indigo Girls & Joan Baez (June 1415 at Chastain), The B-52s (June 28 at Atlanta Botanical Garden), Cyndi Lauper (July 2 at Symphony Hall) and the Village People (July 12 at Cobb Energy Centre). Laura Douglas-Brown




CC 2.0/The Heart Truth


Atlantas summer music calendar continues to ll in, with multiple concerts featuring gay artists or artists with huge LGBT fan bases.

Seems troubled actress and former child star Amanda Bynes can add pissing off a world-famous drag queen to her long list of woes. RuPaul, who got his start in Atlanta, took on Bynes after she used faggot in a Twitter post that has since been deleted. Bynes was apparently angry at People Magazine calling her lost and alone. Follow me on twitter you faggots! she tweeted, according to DListed. Responded RuPaul on June 2, also via Twitter: Derogatory slurs are ALWAYS an outward projection of a persons own poisonous selfloathing @AmandaBynes. Hufngton Post has the rundown, and even provides an amusing and disturbing slide show of other stars guilty of homophobic tweets.

CC 2.0/ChasterUnit0

Kirsten Ott Palladino and Maria Palladino, the Atlanta couple behind the LGBT wedding website Equally Wed, have launched Equally Family, a site aimed at LGBT parents and other diverse families. The Palladinos are mothers to twin toddlers and the new site which features the slogan Pride. Joy. Love. offers sections on building a family, pregnancy, babys rst year, parenting, our community and news. The site also offers Real Families proles, similar to the popular Real Weddings proles at Equally Wed. Check out the beta site at GA Voice also partners with Equally Wed on Atlanta Gay Weddings, an annual print guide; look for the second issue in Fall 2013.



Looking for some summer reading? Winners of the 25th annual Lambda Literary Awards were announced June 3 in New York City, honoring books in two dozen categories. The top prize in Gay General Fiction went to Everything Begins and Ends at the Kentucky

Publicity photo

Publicity photo via Facebook



Event spotlight
Publicity photo


bout Tell us aBT event your LG it your LGBT ays to subm


ow rint There are tw on in our online and p si u cl in to r fo fo t in even event ils ubmit your calendars. S or e-mail deta vo AV G www.the om. eGAVoice.c to editor@th

The second annual Fringe Festival runs through June 9, including the trans show Its My Penis and Ill Cry if I Want To and the gay-themed LoversLane. 7 Stages, Film Love presents Mr Coperthwaite: A Life in the Maine Woods: Part Two: A Summer Task, a world premiere documentary by Anna Grimshaw, 8 p.m. at the Atlanta Contemporary Art Center, Marys hosts a Boys of Summer Swimsuit Contest and Beach Party, 9 p.m., Shavonna B. Brooks hosts Extravaganza at 11 p.m. Saturday nights at Burkharts,


GLAAD hosts a beer bust/fundraiser with a special appearance by Rupauls Drag Race star Mariah Balenciaga. 3 6 p.m. at Zocalo Atlanta,


OurSong, Atlantas lesbian and gay chorus, presents The Singing Heart. 8 p.m. Friday at St. Bartholomews Episcopal Church in Atlanta; 8:15 p.m. Saturday at Clayton State University in Morrow.


Publicity photo

The weekend Peachtree Hills Festival of the Arts offers a park full of arts and crafts, with an emphasis on Georgia artists. Peachtree Hills Recreation Center, As part of Stonewall Month, Atlanta Pride and Metro Atlanta Democratic Socialists of America offer an Insider History of LGBT Atlanta, 11 a.m. at Open Door Community, Get your car cleaned by a hot, shirtless dude at the Suds and Studs Car Wash, benetting Joining Hearts. 12 4 p.m. in the 10th & Piedmont/Gilberts/ Blakes on the Park parking lot, Musicians from Blair Crimmins and the Hookers, Bird City Revolutionaries, the Bonaventure Quarter, Old 4th Ward Afro-Klemzer Orchestra and more perform at the all-day music fest Tunes from the Tombs, 1 - 8 p.m. at the Oakland Cemetery, Cirque de Nuit, the 2013 version of the Atlanta Cotillion/AID Atlanta fundraiser featuring DJs Mike Pope and Todd Skelton and lmmaker Del Shores, is tonight from 7 p.m. 1 a.m. at the Delta Heritage Museum Hangar, The ladies the of National Flag Football League come out in this second annual drag show benet, 7 p.m. at Jungle,

Sting makes an Atlanta appearance at 8 p.m. at Chastain Park,

Bookmark to get your daily dose of local LGBT events.

Three years of love, looks and diversity are honored in the Bedlam H2(h)O3 anniversary pool party, 9 p.m. 3 a.m., Wetbar of the Atlanta W Downtown, Enjoy the Tidal Wave Party with DJ Coqui at 10 p.m. at Atlanta Eagle, Go back in time with the Backstreet Reunion Party, reminiscing fondly about the beloved bar, at Jungle, Play, Atlantas new Latino night, heats up at 10 p.m. Saturdays at Mixx, The Ukulele Orchestra of Great Brooklyn presents Missionary in Manhattan, part of the Dirty South tour. 3 p.m. at MJCCA,


Atlanta singer-songwriter Ben Deignan performs for the anniversary of VOX, Atlantas only citywide newspaper written by teens and for teens, celebrating its 20th anniversary as an Atlanta nonprot. 5 8 p.m. at the W Atlanta Downtowns Drinkshop, Lindsey Hinkle takes the stage at 8 p.m. at Eddies Attic, Discover some new stars at the New Faces Talent Contest beginning at 9 p.m. at Friends on Ponce,

Adult lm star director Chi Chi LaRue appears at Atlanta Pride Night with model Landon Conrad, 10 p.m., BJ Roosters,

Photo via Facebook


Rise from the Ashes Phoenix Reunion Party remembers the late Ponce de Leon bar, 2- 6:30 p.m., The Model T,

Publicity photo


Stevie and Lindsey and the rest of Fleetwood Mac perform at 8 p.m. at Philips Arena,





Tee up at Fore Paws, the rst annual golf tournament/ benet for Angels Among Us Pet Rescue, 9:30 a.m. 4 p.m., Country Club of the South, Join SNaP Co (Solutions Not Punishments Coalition) for a community meeting discussing female sex workers and their rights, 6 8 p.m. in the Old City Hall Chambers, 55 Trinity Ave. The Atlanta Harm Reduction Coalition hosts a benet with bands including Mortal Komband and Crater, 8 p.m. 2 a.m. at 529, Angelica DPaige hosts Blue Monday Karaoke at 11:30 p.m. at Burkharts, A part of Stonewall Month, catch the On these Shoulders We Stand screening, sponsored by Touching Up Our Roots and Atlanta Pride, at 7 p.m. at the Midtown Art Cinema, Charis Books co-hosts a reading of Emory graduate Anton DiSclafanis upcoming book The Yonahlossee Riding Camp for Girls at 7 p.m. at the Toco Hill-Avis G. Williams Library, 1282 McConnell Drive Decatur, GA 30033, Tuesdays, unwind with a sing-along with pianist David Reeb at 8 p.m. at Mixx, Billy Idol rocks at 8:30 p.m. at the Tabernacle, Tuesdays, Thursdays and early Saturdays are Three Legged Cowboy country nights at the Heretic,

Event spotlight
Photo by Bo Shell



Photo by Brent Corcoran/RNZ Photography

Special guests galore appear at the monthly Big Gay Game Show at 7:30 p.m. at Jungle,

Indigo Girls and Joan Baez play two shows at 7 p.m. at Chastain Park Amphitheatre,

Kaled Hosseini (author of the The Kite Runner) presents his new book, And the Mountains Echoed, at 7 p.m. at the First Baptist Church in Decatur, Charis presents Saying No And Meaning It, part of the Radical Relationships Series by Angelique Burke, 7:30 p.m., Charis Books, Turnt Up Thursdays heat up at 11 p.m. at Traxx Atlanta, Former Men of Chippendales visit LeBuzz with their new Men of Cuffs and Collars review,


The Atlanta Gay Mens Chorus debuts its Big Gay Sing at 6 p.m. at Jungle, The Southeasts largest drag show is the raucous East Point Possum Show, 7 11 p.m., 2727 East Point St., Leo Kottke performs at 8:30 p.m. at Variety Playhouse, Traxx Girls presents the Heart Throb Tour, with music from the 80s and 90s including Bobby Brown and R. Kelly, 10 p.m. at My Sisterss Room, Southeast Black & Blue Bound in Leather Night gets underway at 10 p.m. at the Atlanta Eagle,


Strike! Bowling sign-up with practice bowl tonight as part of the Decatur Womens Sports League at 6:30 p.m. at Suburban Lanes, Stephen Mosher and Pat Dwyer the male couple who get married in every state they can appear at a screening of their documentary Married and Counting, sponsored by Out On Film and Atlanta Pride, 7 p.m. at the Midtown Art Cinema, Toga is the theme for PALS Bingo night at 7:30 p.m. at Jungle Club, Representatives from Reforming Arts, a non-prot formed to provide arts and humanities education in Georgia prisons, speak tonight from 7:30 9 p.m. at Charis Books, Get your all night dances move ready at the Ofcial Launch Party for the Pig Dance Blackout Party, 10 p.m. at the Heretic, Phoenix and Nicole Paige Brooks host Dragamaniacs, an open mic drag talent show, at 10 p.m. at Jungle,

New Kids on the Block perform with Boys II Men and 98 Degrees at 7:30 p.m. at Philips Arena,


Lesbian social group Fourth Tuesday hosts its Happy Hour from 6 9 p.m. at Mixx Atlanta, Southern Bears start with coffee at Ansley Starbucks at 7 p.m. then proceed with dinner at 8 p.m. at a TBD location, Turnabout for Marietta Pride, where bar staff perform numbers and the entertainers mix drinks, gets going at 11 p.m. at LeBuzz, DJ Christopher Kind spins at 11:30 p.m. for Jungle University,


Youll still be partying from Saturday night as DJ Manny Lehman spins at private club Xion at 3 a.m., PFLAG-Atlanta hosts a support group for families and friends of LGBT people. 2:30 5 p.m., St. Mark United Methodist Church, The inimitable Armorettes spice up Sunday night, 6 8 p.m. at Burkharts, DJ Rick and DJ Maestro spin at 7 p.m. on Sundays at Mixx,


Peach Party weekend features DJs Twisted Dee, Corey David, Tony Moran, Russ Rich, Paulo, Manny Lehman, David Knapp, Martin Fry and Alyson Calagna spinning

Heart plays at 8 p.m. at Chastain Park,


Photo via Facebook

Photo via Facebook


at venues including the Heretic, Piedmont Park, Jungle, Xion and Las Margaritas. More information and passes available at




Criminalization & Queer Rebellion: A Multi-Generational Discussion takes place from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at the Little 5 Points Community Center as part of Stonewall Month. Presented by JustUsATL, The Oscar-nominated 5 Broken Cameras is screened as part of the Third Friday Film Series at 7 p.m. at First Existentialist Congregation, w Boy band extraordinaire One Direction performs at 7:30 p.m. at Philips Arena, Slide this way and that way at Lube Wrestling at 11 p.m. at the Atlanta Eagle,
Photo by Laura Douglas-Brown




Take to the streets for the annual Pride Run, starting at 8 a.m. at Piedmont Park, presented by Front Runners, Atlanta Rollergirls turn up the heat for a double bill of roller derby action, 5 p.m. at the Yaarab Shrine Center, The gay Atlanta Freedom Bands present Our American Journey at 8 p.m. at Saint Mark United Methodist Church,

Augusta Pride kicks off Friday night with Beats on Broad with DJ Kaos from Savannahs Club One, then continues Saturday with the annual parade and festival in the Augusta Commons.

Songwriters in the round with Dede Vogt, Caroline Aiken, Trina and Tomi of Three5Human at 8 p.m. at Red Clay, MASH ATTACKS! Party with DJ Pat Scott at 10 p.m. at the Atlanta Eagle,

Start the work week with Blue Monday Karaoke with Angelica DPaige at 11:30 p.m. at Burkharts, www.



The Real Communities Initiative, a project of the Georgia Council on Developmental Disabilities, is in search of new partners. Come nd out how to help at the Atlanta meeting, 9 5 p.m., Atlanta Friends Meeting House, Author and autism activist Temple Grandin speaks at 7 p.m. at the First Baptist Church, Decatur, Tracee McDaniel, CEO and founder of the Juxtaposed Center for Transformation, signs copies of her book Transitions at 7:30 p.m. at Charis,


Go Out in the Stands as the Atlanta Braves host their third annual LGBT night as the Braves take on the New York Mets. 5 - 7 p.m. pre-game meet-andgreet with Ben Cohen, 7 p.m. rst pitch, presented by the Atlanta Braves, benetting the Ben Cohen StandUp Foundation, Every Tuesday, sing out at Mary-oke starting at 9 p.m. at Marys, VJ Marco Polo puts on a night of showtunes every Tuesday night at 9 p.m. at Amsterdam Atlanta,


Celebrate the Emory LGBT Archives at 6:30 p.m. at the universitys Robert Woodruff Library, presented by Emory Gay and Lesbian Alumni (GALA) and the Emory University Manuscripts and Rare Books Library (MARBL), AEN presents a professional Summer Kick Off Mix and Mingle, 6:30 p.m. at Mixx,






Single tickets available all Ticketmaster outlets TICKETMASTER.COM
Concerts take place rain or shine. Artists and schedules are subject to change. All sales final. No exchanges or refunds.







A new work by Andrew Lippa

June 28 & 29 2013


Glenn Memorial Auditorium

at Emory University




When the mic is o
The truth about women in media
Last week was a pinnacle in my radio career. Vikki Locke invited me to speak at a Women in Media charity luncheon, and I was introduced by Mara Davis. I have listened to these two amazing women and looked up to them for years. The opportunity to speak to my mentors along with a room full of women was an honor. What I said may not have been that encouraging, but it was the truth. My speech was titled, What Was Said to Me When the Microphone Was Off. That topic could have kept me there all day. But I limited my speech to three of the most shocking statements that had been made to me during my career. 1) Women arent interested in news. My degree from the University of Tennessee is in broadcast news. My career in radio has always involved the news. Through my years on morning radio, more than one male manager has explained to me that women dont really care about the news. I was repeatedly told to shorten my newscasts so that entertainment stories would have more time. In radio, there is a real perception that women truly care more about the Kardashians than they do the president. 2) Let ME tell you what women want. When I began working at one of my former radio stations, I was called into a meeting with a program director who slid a piece of paper across the desk to me. It was a list of things that women were interested in. He proceeded to explain to me the topics that women want to hear about and since I was a DJ at a station geared towards women, I should know this list.
Melissa Carter is also a writer for Hufngton Post. She broke ground as the rst out lesbian radio personality on a major station in Atlanta and was one of the few out morning show personalities in the country. Follow her on Twitter @MelissaCarter

In this surreal moment, I was tempted to point out to this gentleman that I didnt need his list since not only was I a woman, but I also DATED women and so I had a pretty good idea of what women wanted. But as a new employee, I simply listened to his casual presentation and smiled. I only wish I had kept that sheet of paper. 3) You dont have enough experience to host your own show. I have been in Atlanta morning radio since 1995. But that statement was said to me a month ago. It was an organic conversation with a man who has been in the media business for 40 years. I asked him exactly what he thought I needed to accomplish to be capable of heading up my own show. He didnt have an answer. But the reality is that gender re-identication surgery would be the only step I could have missed. I am not a negative person by nature. In fact, I am impatient with those who do nothing but complain about their situation. But there is only one way to change reality and that is to rst recognize it. Women are devalued in media. We point to Oprah and Ellen and use them to soothe our feelings. But the reality is that the great majority of decision makers in media and every industry are still men. Look at Congress if you want to see the reality of just how far women still have to go. As I explained to my audience, to blaze a new trail, you have to know the obstacles in your path that need to be set on re. And I am happy to strike the rst match.




Why I like labels
I came out to the customer care lady at the cable company. Id called because I decided I wanted to watch The Prizewinner of Deance, Ohio, and my cable box, confused that anyone would wish to see this lm, froze up completely. So I called the help number on my screen, and the representative addressed me by my husbands name. I said, No, this is Topher, his husband. Im authorized on the account. She replied, Oh, yes, I see. Youre the other Mr. Payne. What can I do for you? Well, you can start by not calling me the other Mr. Payne, lady. I like to think that both Messrs. Payne stand on equal footing, even if my income cant really support that notion. But thats not the point of my story. You see, I identied myself to a stranger as the husband of a dude in a completely boring and uneventful exchange with my cable provider. The label I used to identify myself encountered no resistance or mockery. Preppy and I have encountered so many situations over the years where referring to each other as husband, or the fact that we share a last name, has been met with raised eyebrows or hostility or remarkably bizarre personal questions. The cable company ladys non-response reminded me that its becoming increasingly unlikely that were gonna be anybodys rst time anymore. It appears the labels weve chosen are starting to stick. When one writes a blog, one must then tag the post with keywords, which helps readers search for relevant content. You write a thousand words on the history of egg salad, tag it with egg salad and history, and egg salad historical buffs all over the world will ock to you. I enjoy tagging, because Im a very pro-label person. Im aware thats not a popular standpoint, because labels can marginalize people and nobody likes that. My buddy Scott, the transgendered author and performance artist, has built an entire career educating folks on how you cant label him. I tried real dang hard to be open-minded about that, but in the end Ive just labeled him

Tag. Youre it.

Topher Payne is an Atlanta-based playwright, and the author of the book Necessary Luxuries: Notes on a SemiFabulous Life. Find out more at

My buddy Scott, the transgendered author and performance artist who doesnt like labels. He has become dened by his resistance to denition. Back when Preppy and I were trying out churches, I fell in love with an Episcopal parish that was very polished and ornate. That sense of formality was enormously appealing to me. I wasnt interested in a just-folks minister who tells everyone to Just call me Marcia. When it comes to who has God on speed dial if I need answers, Id prefer reaching out to someone I call Reverend or Preacher over Marcia. It just sounds wrong to me, like when I hear a nine year-old call his parents by their rst names. If Id ever tried calling my father Cleve, there would have been dire consequences. Authority gures have labels, like Dad, or Senator, or Mistress of Pain, as a sign of respect. And darn it, I think it really helps clear things up for people if you can give them a few keywords to associate with you. I read an interview with Dr. Laura where she said that shes all for same-gender domestic partnerships, but believes the institution of marriage should be protected. I assume shes referring to the institution which allowed her to divorce her rst husband after she had an affair, then live with her boyfriend for nine years prior to their marriage. The argument Dr. Laura hypocritically presents is one we hear a lot, that we should let go of the word and focus on the rights. But labels matter, yall. When you tag yourself, youre sending a very specic message: Married. Gay. Southern. Christian. Youre choosing to take the accepted denition and declaring to the world that whether your usage supports or dees their understanding, you are ofcially that thing. Thats how the denition expands and reforms over time through usage. If it happens enough, a label that once would have been seen as ridiculous or provocative is now just the greeting which leads to a lovely evening watching a Julianne Moore movie.









2.0i Premium



17899 17 ,899



% 30

21999 21 ,999





19995 19 ,995



21995 21 ,995