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UBC Publications

The Ubyssey Feb 5, 1994

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Array the Queer issue.
Friday 5 February 1994 ^^o^ Vnlnmo 7R iccnesi
Volume 76, Issue 31
If you allow yourself to be silent,
you allow yourself to be silenced.
Silence still equals death. CLASSIFIEDS
Free Public Lecture
Saturday, Feb. 5
Professor Julia Crukshank
Department of Anthropology
speaking on
Lecture Hall 2, Woodward IRC
at 8:15 p.m.	
FREE LECTURE "Learning to
live," John Darvill, Feb. 20th, 8 pm,
Technocracy, 3542 Kingsway.
HEMP PAPER products, no trees,
no dioxins. Sheets 81/2 x 11, env.
note pads, to order call 263-0849.
2BDR SUITE for rent. Stove, ref.,
washer, dryer. No smoking. No
kid, no pet. 263-6773.
PROFESSIONAL requires furnished accommodationforone year
starting July. (415) 645-2576.
JOB SEARCH. Get ready for summer or permanent jobs. Three sessions: Feb 8,15, & 17th, 4:30 - 6:00:
"The Resume," "Marketing," "The
Interview." Register in 307 Brock.
$25 CHEAP!
Your ass is mine Ashman, let me
in. hav liz
The Ubyssey is now accepting
Valentine messages for the
special Feb. 11th Valentine
Issue. Deadline is Feb. 9. Avoid
the rush. Book your love now!
BEST-BUY CAR & TRUCK rentals. We gladly accept cash deposits. We make renting hassle free.
Ph. 261-2277 - 261-CARS.
CLASSICAL GUITARIST - lessons/performances available. Familiar with many styles. Qualifications & B.Mus., European
trained. Reasonable rates. Cal
Blair 222-2821.
LSAT-MCAT-GRE: Intensive 20-
hour weekend seminars; experi-
encedinstructors; latest up-to-date
study materials; course fee $195;
full money-back guarantee. OXFORD SEMINARS 739-8030.
You could spend next summer
working in Europe, Japan,
or the South Pacific!
Ask Travel CUTS about SWAP:
SUB Lower Level... 822-6890.
For help with grammar, essays,
LPI and provincial exam prep. First
hour free. 277-6137.
Sessions on NOW
Call 228-1544
Rcnert Seminars Inc.
... drama, exhibits, films, music,
public speaking and readings.
presented by
Creative and Pertormins Arts Departments, Faculty of Arts
The University of British Columbia
February 10 • 18,1994
Brochures available at UBC as well as at libraries,
community centres, bookstores and theatres.
For information, please call 822-9161
EARN $15.00
The UBC Department of Psychiatry is looking
for volunteer participants under age 19 to complete
a self-report questionnaire.
This will require two 45-minute sessions one
week apart.
Upon completion of the second part, you will
receive a $15.00 payment.
If you have any questions or if you would like
to volunteer, please call Yassi or Dr. Elizabeth Baerg
at 822-7292.
iunnm» studio i $500 OFF
V6T 1K6
224-1922 • 224-9116
Formerly "Hipperts on
the Boulevard". Under
new management.
£$300 OFF
PROFESSIONAL typist, 30 years
exp., ed process/typing, APA/MLA,
thesis. Student rates. Dorothy,
... on campus...
Stop running around!
PCs / Macs / lots of software
packages / and of course, a
Postscript laser printer.
Rm 60 - SUB, Ground Level
Ph/fax 822-5640
Only $24.95 (2 pgs). 10 yrs exp.
Includes 10 laser prints & diskette.
stud. Will type anything. $2/pg.
On campus pick up & del. Laser
print. Lauren 222-2399.
PERFECT LASER-printed resumes, term papers, theses, etc.
Storedfor two years. Very Reason-,
able. 889-0476.
MAC/IBM W.P. DTP. Essays, resumes, overhead, business cards,
scanning, etc. Call Joanne 730-
printer, essays, theses, manuscripts. Low rates. Shirley 731-
Friday. Friwimiy 4
Spartacus Youth Club. Black History Month Forum: "Anti-RacistPrc-
testers Confront KKK" Noon, SUB
211 & 7:30 pm, Room L4, Britannia
Comm. Ctr. (Napier & Commercial).
Nursing Undergraduate Society.
"Directions in Nursing" Presentation
series. Discussion forum for
undergrad students with 3.SN. practising nurses. Noon-l:20pm. Univ.
Hoep. - UBC Site, Acute Care Pavilion T-188 (third floor).
Japan Exchange Club. Japanese food
night. 6:30pm, SUB 207/209.
UBC School of Music. Janina
Failkowska, piano recital. Distinguished Artists. 8pm, Music Bldg.,
Tix $15 adults; $10 students/seniors.
UBC Students of Objectivism. Videotaped lecture on Dr. Andrew
Bernstein's talk "Rational Egoism in
Ayn Rand's The Fountainhead. Noon,
new room! Angus 428.
Frontier College. UBC Students for
Literacy. We are looking for volunteers to conduct a literacy program.
Please call 822-6502.
Saturday Frfwimiy K
UBC Law Union. Public interest law
conference. Focus on children and
the law. 9:45-5:00 pm, Curtis 101/
Monday. Triwmirg 1
Student Health Outreach. Shopping
the safe way — grocery shopping
tours. Learn to shop for nutrition,
taste and economy. Conducted by
4th year Dietician students. 7-
8:30pm, Registration 228-4044
Melodie. Will take place at Safeway
on 10th just off campus.
Gays, Lesbians & Bisexuals of UBC.
Movie night - NFB Film: Out: Stories of Gay and Lesbian youth. 8pm,
SUB Theatre.
Tuesday. Fahmnrv «
Student Placement Services. Job
Search Clinic First of 3 sessions on
resume preparation, marketing
yourself, and interviewing skills.
Must register at Brock 307. Fee:
$25. Get in shape for the summer job
search! Get ready for the post-
graduation real world!
Everyday is Fish day, so swim
with me today baby!
EXPmUMftCH 311*94
DATE: February 7-9
HOURS: 8-7(Feb7&8)
PLACE: S.U.B. Ground Floor      LAST DAY: 8-5 (Feb 9)
Your mother was wrong.
Your eyes WONT remain permanently crossed.
Admin faces queer issues
by Tanya Stonr
The UBC administration
has been criticized in the past
for espousing homophobic policies, but now it seems the
President's Office is taking
steps to change their approach
to queer issues on campus.
UBC queer activists are both
sceptical and cautiously optimistic about the administration's apparent attitude
During the 1989-90 Gay
Games controversy, president
Strangway made a series of
homophobic remarks objecting
to holding Gay Games events
at UBC. The 5 January 1990
issue of The Ubyssey quotes
Strangway saying, "It's an
issue of the community identifying (homosexuality) with the
university" and "Why would
one not participate in the normal men's athletics or the normal women's athletics?"
Strangway's remarks were met
with subsequent outrage from
UBC's queer community.
Now, four years later, the
administration has spent
$10,000 sponsoring the ongoing
President's Lecture Series in
Lesbian and Gay Studies. The
lecture series has generated
considerable support and interest from the UBC community.
Seven different speakers came
to UBC last term as part of the
series, addressing a range of
topics, including "Early Gay
Male Pornography" and "The
Significance of Lesbian and
Gay Studies for Transforming
Education." The next event in
the series, a talk and film by
lesbian filmmaker Lorna
Boschman, takes place on 16
When contrasted with the
president's past remarks
regarding the Gay Games, this
lecture series, which publicly
associates queer issues with
the president's office, seems to
indicate a radical change in the
administration's attitude.
Queer activists on campus have
differing feelings on whether
the administration's turn
around is credible.
Scott Watson, co-chair of the
UBC ad-hoc committee on lesbian and gay issues, believes
that the administration's attitude change is genuine.
"I think it's not an about-
face. Instead, it's the result of
the president being educated
by people around him.
Guardedly, I would say that
the lecture series is a serious
initiative made by the administration."
Women's Studies student
Tanya Battersby feels differently. She views the lecture
series as largely a propaganda
move on the administration's
"I see the lecture series as
an attempt to compensate for
their pathetic record with
regards to queer issues, with
specific reference to the way
they handled the Gay Games in
1990. We have to remember
that this is a very public type of
event, and it looks really good
for their publicity. If you look
at the internal treatment of
gays and lesbians at this university, the scenario is much
less pretty."
Although Battersby is sceptical about the administration's
motives for holding the lecture
series, she is still glad that it is
taking place.
"It's a really good start
towards making space for gay
and lesbian scholarship, and
towards making the campus a
place that is open to gays and
lesbians, a place where they'd
like to come."
Both Watson and Battersby
emphasized that the lecture
series is only a start, and that
the administration should take
many more initiatives if they
are truly committed to reducing homophobia and encouraging queer scholarship on campus.
"We feel from surveying our
committee members and ourselves that there's a fair
amount of homophobia on the
campus. For example, one student writing an essay about
Walt Whitman from the point
of view of his homosexuality
was told by his English professor that this was irrelevant,"
Watson said.
Battersby echoed Watson's
sentiments, saying the campus
"is not a safe place to be out."
She pointed out that there is a
serious lack of gay and lesbian
course content, and an absence
of any training to educate professors on how to deal with
homophobia in the classroom.
Battersby and Watson both
believe queer scholarship could
help eradicate homophobia on
campus through education.
Watson said the committee on
gay and lesbian issues is currently encouraging the administration to institute an
endowed chair in queer studies
on campus. This chair could
then act as a focal point around
which queer theory courses
could be organized.
"There are people in various
departments who are interested and qualified and should be
able to teach courses that specialize in queer theory.
Students should also be able to
do grad work in queer theory.
Queer studies is one of many
interdisciplinary studies that
are shaking up academe and
we don't want UBC to get left
Battersby said she would
also like to see "further commitment from the administration towards queer scholarship
after the lecture series, including affirmative action towards
hiring gays and lesbians for
teaching positions."
For now, Watson is heartened by the administration's
support of the gay and lesbian
lecture series.
"I felt that vice-president
Dan Birch offered the money
for the series spontaneously
and with good will. He
approached our committee, we
didn't approach him. The series
has certainly raised interest in
queer studies on campus," he
About the front cover...
Ted Young-Ing
Procedure Photos:
Siobhan Roantree
Yes, his lips really are sewn together. And yes, it hurts—a lot.
In order to do this, we used a sterile surgical sutur and sterile latex operating
gloves. Mat rinced his mouth with Listerine, then washed his lips with Betadine
Surgical Scrub.
The stiches go through the first couple of layers of skin on the lips, but not so deep
as to hit the arteries that are beneath the surface.
Once the stitches were removed, he gargled again, and washed with Betadine several times.
The sewing proceedure takes about half an hour, and should leave no permanent
marks (Mat had red dots which went away after a day or two).
Queer is non-assimilationist. We are not here to make
straight people feel good about us. We are in your face faggots
and dykes. We are not here as diplomatic envoys to start
peace talks with straights. Lots of us hate straights. Lots of
us have fantasies of killing or beating straights. We are
angry. We are here to scare you. We are here to tell you we
fuck, and we fuck hard. We are a threat to family values. We
do want to dismantle the patriarchal nuclear family unit. We
are sexual liberationists. Oh yes, did we mention, we like to
Gay people are nice. Gay people don't talk about their sexuality so that liberal straight people can feel comfortable in
their liberal boundaries and can continue to manouver comfortably within them, unchallenged and unprovoked about
their "straightness".
Straight people like gay people. Lots of straight people
have gay friends. Straight people like gay people because
they're nice about being gay, not like those loud mouthed,
politicized, militant queers—shucks, gay people are just like
straight people except they're with a same-sex partner.
Gender goes unchallenged and sexuality is a non-topic. Don't
target us, say gay people, we are just like you so let us join
you—we can work together to make things better and heck,
we look just as good in an Armani suit as straight guys.
Everyone is happy as long as gay people don't start talking
about their "gayness," as long as they're congenial, entertaining, fun to be around and let you hang out with them at their
Queer people know they are stigmatized, despised, hated,
kicked, bashed and mocked. Silence is heterosexual culture's
greatest weapon against us and we rage against this silence,
we rage against the forces that will put us down and we rage
against all those who would prefer that we remain silent.
To become self-aware as queer means we recognize our
stigmatizations are connected to gender, the family unit, the
cult of the individual, the nation-state, consumerism, sexual
desire, reproductive politics, racial identity, class identity,
trust and truth, censorship, intimate life and social display,
fear and violence, health care, and cultural norms about the
essence of the body. Being queer means fighting these stig-
matisations all the time, locally, bit by bit and always with
consequences. Gay people do not want to face the consequences of a political revolt against the dominant ideological
consciousness. Gay people do not want to dismantle hetero-
sexuality, they do not want to ask the difficult questions, they
do not want to give up the small bribes the heterosexual system offers.
Queer struggles do not aim to achieve the conditional
equality which the liberal agenda has offered. It's no longer
simply a struggle for civil rights especially when one hundred
thousand Oregeonians signed petitions to define gay people
alongside pedophiles and to legislate their basic human
rights away. In Canada we have a new political party called
the "Reform Party"—don't fool yourselves if you think
Canada will be exempt from the backlash. It is obvious that
the system will crush you and no small amends you make in
that system will be safe from dismantlement by "the majority." Democracy as we know it is not queer friendly. There is a
severe mental illness gripping the planet and its called
"straight-mindedness." The backlash against the breach of
queer thoughts and culture into the heterosexual mainstays
has provoked liberal gay movements to locate the source of
the backlash within the queer movement itself. If the queer
shitdisturbers would stop, then the precarious position that
the liberal gay agenda is lobbying for might be permitted
marginal acceptance within the society. If gay people could
just get married then the government could collect more
tax—gay people spend money too, gay people want to raise
families just like you, gay people are an exploitable population like any other minority group so we'll let you exploit us if
you leave our bedrooms alone says the gay agenda. 4   THE UBYSSEY
HIV is not AIDS virus—necessarily
by Tessa Moon
The human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) is no longer
the only candidate for the position
of "AIDS virus."
University of California
retrovirologist Peter Duesberg has
generated worldwide controversy
by suggesting that a collection of
known diseases were renamed
"AIDS" in an attempt to revive the
field of retrovirology.
Duesburg claims that the
immune deficiency that
characterizes AIDS is not caused
by a virus, pointing out that male
homosexuals make up a sizable
percentage of AIDS patients. "[A]
virus does not discriminate
between men and women," he said.
Professor of immunology Mike
Grant, a research associate at
UBC, counters that the gender
difference is due to the route of
spread ofthe disease. "[AIDS] was
introduced in gay populations," he
said. "It's more effectively spread
by their sexual practices.
Unprotected anal sex is the easiest
way of getting infected."
"I think it [Duesberg's claim]
is nonsense," said Dr. Geoffrey
Hoffmann, who is currently
studying auto-immune response
and AIDS at UBC. "I don't think
we're clever enough or stupid
enough to invent AIDS. I don't
know any combination of diseases
that could produce these
symptoms [and] it's not possible to
be fooled in a big way like that."
In 1986, Director of NIH's
Institute of Allergy and Infectious
Diseases Anthony Fauci said that
20-40 percent of people diagnosed
with AIDS had no HIV antibodies
in their blood.
Later, Duesberg noted that
fewer than 1 in 10,000 to 100,000
T-cells in AIDS patients are shown
to be infected with HIV.
Duesberg proposes that this
and other evidence suggests HIV
does not meet the requirements of
the Koch postulates, four
conditions which must be present
for a micro-organism to be declared
the cause a disease.
But according to UBC
assistant professor of medical
genetics and biotechnology Dr.
Wilfred Jefferies, the low HIV-
count mystery is being solved.
Improving identification
techniques continually increases
the percentage of positive tests.
"Now, with more sensitive
technology, a far greater number
of cells have been shown to harbor
the virus," he said. "I think it's
pretty clear there's a direct
relationship between HIV and
Luc Montaigner, a co-
discoverer of HIV, is now
suggesting that the virus is not
responsible for AIDS. In addition,
an increasing group of scientists
believe that the AIDS-causality
mechanism is far more complex
than formerly believed.
"HIV may not [be] the sole
cause," said UBC professor of
immunology Michael Gold. "Other
viruses might be responsible, but
I think HIV is the major cause."
Immunology graduate
student Peter Uppal believes that
HIV is at least a partial cause. "It
might only be as an initial stimulus
which leads to an actual
breakdown of the immune
response," he said.
Tax titans quash queers
by Taivo Evard
The Canadian Income Tax Act
is set to be challenged by the
largest trade union in the nation
on the grounds that it violates the
Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
"As it stands now, the Income
Tax Act forces us, or any employer,
to discriminate against lesbian
and gay employees," said
Canadian Union of Public
Employees national secretary-
treasurer Geraldine McGuire.
The Income Tax Act, which
defines "spouse" as someone ofthe
"opposite sex" for the purpose of
pension plan registration, is being
challenged by CUPE. The case is
scheduled to begin 26 April in
Ontario Court general division.
"It's time we changed an
archaic out-of-date system so that
it can accomodate the diverse
needs of all Canadians," McGuire
said. "Lesbian and gay workers
are required to make the same
contributions to the plan and they
should no longer be denied their
pension rights."
Section 52 ofthe Constitution
Act 1982 will be used to challenge
the constitutionality of sections of
the income tax act which contain
the definition of "spouse." CUPE
posits that denying equal rights
to same-sex partners violates
section 15(1) of the Canadian
Charter of Rights and Freedoms-
CUPE's pension plan is
registered under the Income Tax
Act, providing tax deferral
advantages—employer and
employee contributions to the
plan are deductible and income
earned on the investments made
by the plan are tax free.
Revenue Canada informed
CUPE that if they included same-
sex partners for the purpose of
survivor benefits, their plan could
be deregistered, which would
negate tax deferral advantages
for all of its 408,000 members.
Revenue Canada now says
that not only pension plans but
benefit plans as well do not meet
the current requirements of the
Income Tax Act for tax
advantages if they include same-
sex partners.
Notice of
Annual General Meeting
of the Alma Mater Society
Wednesday, Feb. 16th, 12pm
Room 206 (Council Chambers) SUB
Pursuant to Code & Bylaws, Bylaw 3, Section One (1) the following shall be
dealt with:
1. Be it resolved that the members of the Society approve the financial
statements ofthe AMS, for the year ending April 30,93.
2. Be it resolved that the members ofthe Society receive & approve the
Society's interim financial statements for the period ending Dec. 31/93.
3. Be it resolved that the members ofthe Society appoint Dyke & Howard
as the auditors ofthe Society for the 1994-95 fiscal year.
4- The Society will receive the Report of the President and the General
Manager with respect to the activities of the Society of the present
school year.
All AMS members (yes, that means you) invited & encouraged to attend.
Hatred continues
on Liberty Net
by Imtiaz Popat
Canadian Liberty Net
continues broadcasting hate
messages towards homosexuals
and other identifiable groups,
despite a court ruling and
community demands that they be
shut down.
The Surrey-based phone line
was ordered to stop broadcasting
hate messages towards
homosexuals by a tribunal
appointed by the Canadian Human
Rights Commission last week. The
hearings were held because of a
complaint launched last year by
John Payzant who was offended by
a message which said queers
should be stomped into Burns Bog.
Liberty Net is still operating
with a new message—mocking the
tribunal as a waste of taxpayers'
money— regardless of the ruling
last week. "All the crown lawyers
and the crown men could not stop
Liberty Net from recording again."
"We are going to continue
going on despite what any court or
judge says," said Tony McAlear
who operates Liberty Net—as well
as leading a neo-nazi skinhead
group—during a radio interview
with CKLG last weekend. "We'll
just have to be very careful about
what we do say."
Payzant is disappointed that
the line is still operating. "I thought
that they would shut the line
down," Payzant said.
Payzant is happy in a way
that the issue of lesbian and gay
rights was defended. "It helps to
get something on the record,"
Payzant said. "This will help
challenge the courts on the issue of
what is free speech and what is
Harry Grunsky, a community
member of the gay and lesbian
police task force and one of the
witnesses at the hearings,
said."Although it's slap on the
wrist, its helpful to strengthen
laws against hate crimes."
According to Grunsky, the
ruling supports the decision ofthe
Ontario Court of Appeal to protect
lesbian and gay rights under the
human rights legislation.
Presently, lesbian and gay rights
are not included in either the
Canadian Human Rights Act or
the Charter of Rights.
"It's part of the building
block," said Grunsky ofthe ruling.
He argues Canada must include
sexual orientation in the human
rights legislation and strengthen
laws with regard to hate crimes.
"It's anothernailinthecoffin,"
said Betty Baxter—an NDP
candidate in the last federal
election—also a witness at the
hearings. Baxter feels it was good
the issue was challenged. "[The
ruling] reinforces our concerns,"
said Baxter. "We have proved it
one more time."
"It was an important exercise
and the issues were taken
seriously," said Mary Brooks of
the Gay and Lesbian Centre and
one ofthe people named in Liberty
Net's hate messages against
"I personally would have liked
the line closed, however there is
the whole issue of freedom of
speech. Where do we draw the
This is the second time
Canadian Liberty Net has gone
through a human rights tribunal.
The first time was two years ago
for racist hate messages. In that
case, the line was also told to stop
broadcasting hate messages. The
ruling was also ignored and is
currently under appeal. FRIDAY 5 FEBRUARY 1994
Big Brother doesn't like queer books
by Niva Chow
Like something out of
Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451,
censorship and the destruction of
books are occuring under the
supervision of the federal
Little Sisters Book and Art
Emporium has had problems with
Canada customs since 1985. Little
Sisters manager Janine Fuller
feels that delays and seizures of
their shipments, and the opening
of some of their mail, have occurred
because the store has been
"identified as being targeted for
inspection because we are a gay
and lesbian bookstore."
"Other bookstores that aren't
labelled gay or lesbian are not
encountering problems with the
same books," Fuller said, referring
to books like Penguin's Herotica, a
collection of women's erotic fiction
sold at other mainland bookstores.
Books are commonly held at
the border where they are
inspected and reviewed by senior
officials of Canada Customs.
According to Fuller, she was told
by a Customs official that Little
Sisters receives "special
"The way that the Customs
tariff act is set up, the system is
such that we have to appeal each
individual seizure with court dates
for each individual book or
magazine that is seized," Fuller
The result is increased
economic problems for small
businesses which cannot survive
lengthy legal disputes.
"There is also a social stigma
against exposure. We felt the real
issues weren't being covered," she
Fuller stated that the focus
on gay and lesbian bookstores is
due to discrimination and
The recent seizure of mail sent
to Little Sisters from Penguin
Books in Ontario last December
has increased the interest in Little
Sisters' story.
"Who regulates the borders of
what we read?" questioned Fuller,
after Canada Customs claimed the
opening of the shipment was "an
Little Sisters is fighting back.
They took Customs to court on
several occasions, and were
postponed each time for several
months. According to Fuller, the
scope and cost of the court case
escalated substantially each time
the case was delayed.
"At first the case would have
been $5000-10000, with one week
Queers stay home, says
Canada immigration
by Sarah O'Donnell
If you have a spouse or lover
you want to bring to Canada, you
likely won't have much trouble
getting a visa—unless your
partner is the same sex.
Canada's immigration laws
discriminate on the basis of sexual
orientation. There are no legal
provisions in Canada's
Immigration Act that allow a gay
or lesbian Canadian to formally
sponsor their partner.
Heterosexual Canadians can
get their partner into the country
under a spousal sponsorship
clause if they are legally married.
Lesbians and gays do not have
that option open to them because
Canada does not recognize
marriages between same sex
couples as legal.
Rob Hughes, an attorney with
Smith & Hughes Law firm, said
the irony of the situation here in
Canada is that "the ink doesn't
have to be dry on the marriage
certificate before a heterosexual
couple can fill an application for
spousal sponsorship and we have
to go through all these hoops just
to show we have a established
"There is a fundamental
unfairness that lesbian and gay
Canadians are being treated as
second class citizens and their
relationships are not being
recognized by immigration," he
"The definition of spouse
simply excludes lesbian or gay
partners because it refers to
opposite sex couples."
Presently, to be with their
partners in Canada, gays and
lesbians have to file an application
as an independent candidate or
try to attain temporary visitor or
student status. This process can
be very costly and take months.
"Over the last couple of years,
some progress has been made,"
Hughes said.
"Recognition has been given
by immigration to allow
applications to proceed on
humanitarian and compassionate
consideration for the lesbian and
gay partners and that is done on a
case by case basis," he said.
There are no standard
procedures that program
managers in the visa offices can
follow, so each case is left to their
discretion. The result is
inconsistent decisions.
Some activists are fighting
back. Court challenges have been
launched against the government
which argue the current
regulations violate Section 15 of
the charter of rights: "every
individual is equal before and
under the law... without
discrimination based on race,
national or ethnic origin, colour,
religion, sex, age or mental or
physical disability."
But practical necessity often
discourages lesbians and gays
from taking the legal route.
"The problem is that nobody
wants to be a test case and if you
can get approved in some fashion,
you choose to go that route....In a
number of cases in the past, if a
policy is being challenged the
immigration department can
simply grant the applicant status
and that removes the cause of
complaint," Hughes said.
The Lesbian and Gay
Immigration Task Force (LEGIT)
sent a report to the Minister of
Immigration in May 1992 which
listed six other "like minded"
countries that allow same-sex
spousal visas.
In its report LEGIT points
out that Australia has a visa
category for "non-familial
relationships of emotional
interdependency," which covers
same-sexed couples.
New Zealand, Denmark, the
Netherlands, Sweden and Norway
also have immigration laws which
allow immediate status to gay or
lesbian partners.
-PLATO (427 B.C.E.)
in court," she said. "Now it would
cost at least $200 000 with two
months in court."
The next court date is set for
11 December 1994.
Come and Celebrate
with UBC Food Services
\      The Year of the Dog
Special Chinese Combos
February 10th
at the following locations:
The Barn, Ponderosa Cafeteria,
Trekkers Restaurant, SUB Cafeteria
February 10,11,14,15 & 16
at Yum Yums
On Stage, On Screen
& in the Audience
February 11 & 12
2 Shows - 9 pm & Midnight
Tickets at the door ONLY $10
Vogue Box Office Opens @ 1:00 pm Day of Show
m emu
0s pu*^-^
*    • The Empire Builders • by Boris Vian • Directed by Alison Aylward
The University of British Columbia
Written by Boris Vian
Translated by Simon Watson Taylor
A haunting drama of crumbling hierarchies
Directed by Alison Aylward
February 1-5 & 9-12
Curtain 8:00 pm
Dorothy Somerset Studio
Reservations 822-2678
.    • The Empire Builders • by Boris Vian • Directed by Alison Aylward   . 6   THE UBYSSEY
Xtra West back in market
Xtra West back in Granville Island Market... again
by Sara Martin
Xtra West is now officially allowed to distribute in Granville
Island Market.
"We got word from them late
last week. They came out with a
policy on who can distribute there,"
saidXtra West publisher Fred Lee.
Xtra West is a free biweekly
publication geared towards the gay
and lesbian communities. It has
been publishingin Vancouver since
late last July and their current
circulation is 17,000.
In December, Xtra West was
told not to distribute in the Market.
The publication was on the
stands at the marketforsixmonths,
when Lee received a message from
market     coordinator     Mary
ODonovan saying that Xtra West
was not wanted at the market and
would just end up in the paper recycling.
(/Donovan's message said, "we
only have room for local papers in
the market, we have just thrown
out yours again. Part of your content
not suitable for this market anyway... we dont want it here."
However, after a policy review,
the marketdecided to provide space
for Xtra West and is currently installing a rack to accommodate the
many free publications distributed
at the market.
a policy in place, and after all the
media attention [over the ban on
Xtra West] they decided they better
i      *
$4. OFF
971  RICHARDS STREET   689-9719
61 Mogador
Moorish & Mediterranean Giisine
From Morocco. Spain and France, the influences
combine, for an unforgettable, yet affordable, dining
Open for lunch, dinner and after the theatre
for desserts or a liehf meal.
4473 West 10th Avenue
Information and Reservations • 222-2668
learcutting CLAYOQUOT
A forum on Clayoquot Sound
Clifford Arieo
Nuu'Chah-Nulth Tribal Council
Clayton Ruby
Criminal lawyer
Bob Nixon
Forest Planning Canada
Andy Stahl
U.S.Forest Service Employees for Environmental Ethics
Tuesday  February  8
7:30 p.m. Free admission
Robson Square Conference Centre 800 Robson Street
An informal reception to follow (cash bar)
For information call 253-7701
have one," Lee said.
Their new policy states that
any publication "published by Canadian residents and are not primarily concerned with advertising...
will be granted fair and equal access to the public market."
SinceXtra West has received so
much publicity over the Granville
Island ban, people have been more
specific when givingreasons for why
they do not want to distribute the
"People now know that we can
create unnecessary attention to
them and so they are more careful of
what they say,'Lee said. Theyused
tosay we dont like your publication,
now they say that they don't have
enough space."
QlieerS... in rez
Fa irvipw£?8e Acadia
Queers in residence. UBC
has one ofthe largest university residence communities in
all of Canada. The students
who live in Vanier, Totem,
Gage, Fairview and Acadia
combine to form a community
of just under 5000 residents.
Residence is usually thought
of as a place full of wild parties,
and wild (hetero) sex... So
where do gay men fit into this
residence scene?
Research tells us that
about ten percent ofthe population is gay so some quick
math tells us that there are
probably 600 gay people living
in residence. That translates
into two gay people per floor in
Vanier and Gage, three gay
people per floor in Totem, and
one gay person for every two
quads in Fairview. So do gay
people see residence as a
homophobic deathtrap, or do
they view it as a comfortable
environment to live in?
Most ofthe gay residents
that I interviewed saw residence as a comfortable environment to live in. The more
mature residence, Fairview,
with its private four member
quads, is seen as an ideal environment.
"Fairview is not a commu
nal residence, it is just like living in
a house" commented Tony, a
Fairviewresident who is openly gay.
Gage, which is a more communal residence, presents more of a
challenge to gay residents.
"I told my quad mates [about
my being gay] individually when
the subject came up," said the trea-
by Trevor Presley
surer of the Gay Lesbian and Bisexual Club who also lives in Gage.
He stated that Gage was a good
place to live and he had so far experienced no major problems living
However, residence has not always had such a tolerant environment. The all male floors in Totem
and Vanier have been seen by some
as promoting and institutionalizing
homophobic behavior. A great way
to sabotage a guy's reputation in
residence is to accuse him of being
gay, and jokes that are homophobic
in nature are still the norm for many
guys who live on these floors.
"There was one time when there
was several homophobic messages
on my door and my advisor just told
me to clean them off... he didnt seem
to get the bigger picture," said
John, a Totem Resident who is
openly gay. Since that inci dent
two years ago housing has
adopted several new policies to
combat homophobic behavior.
Recently there has been a
clause added to the residence
contract listing homophobic
behavior as an offense. If residents engage in homophobic
behavior, they could receive a
standards offense which could
lead to an eviction from residence. The resident advisors
receive sensitivity training to
help them deal with gay and
lesbian issues more effectively.
The housing department
also publishes and distributes
"The Gay Blade," an informative newsletter which Tony,
John and the treasurer of the
GLBC agree is an excellent
Housingalsoplans to issue
a survey to all residents and
some ofthe questions will deal
with gay issues. The housing
department realizes that it can
do more and seeks input from
its resident population. "The
best thing I can do is listen to
what is needed," said Totem
Resident life Manager Janet
THE UBYSSEY    7 Required
A Boy's Own Storv. Edmund White (Alyson
City of Night. John Rechy (Grove Press)
Close to the Knives. David Wojnarowicz
(Vintage Books)
Closer. Dennis Cooper (Grove Press)
Doc and Fluff. Pat Califia (Alyson Books)
Faggots. Larry Krammer (Plume Books)
Frisk. Dennis Cooper (Grove Press)
Macho Sluts. Pat Califia (Alyson Books)
Mr. Benson. John Preston (Bad Boy
Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit, by Jeanette
Winterson (Pandora Press)
Ouerelle, Jean Genet (Grove Press)
Reflections of a Rock Lobster. Aaron Fricke
(Alyson Books)
Ruhyfruit Jungle, Rita Mae Brown (Bantam
A Season in Hell. Arthur Rimbaud
Still Sane, by Persimmons Brockbridge &
Sheila Gilhooly (Press Gang Books)
Thief's Journal. Jean Genet (Grove Press)
Bi Any Other Name: Bisexuals Speak Out,
eds. 1.oraine Hutchins and l.am Kaahumanu (
Closer to Home: Biscxuality and Feminism.
ed. Elizabeth Reba Weise uSeal Publishers)
Epistcmologv ofthe Closet, by Eve Kosofsky
Scgwick (Univ. of California Press)
Gender Trouble, by J. Butler (Routledge
Inversions, ed. Betsy Warland (Press Gang
Leatherfolk. by Mark Thompson (Alyson
Queer in America, by Michael Signorile
(Random House)
Trouble With Harry Hav. by Stuart Timmons
(Alyson Books)
Woman Native Other, by Trih T. Mihn-ha
(Indiana University Press)
Written on the Body, Jeanette Winterson
(Random House)
Cool queer
7 Year Bitch; 1000 Homo djs; Mark Almond
(Soft Cell); Daniel Ash (Bauhaus, Love &
Rockets); Bomb; Kate Bush; Buzzcocks; Meyn
Cadell; Tracy Chapman; John Cage;
Consolidated; Ani DiFranco; Disposable
Heroes of Hiphopracy; Melissa Ethridge; Ethyl
Meatplow; Fifth Column; Ferron; Germs;
Indigo Girls; Grace Jones; kd lang; King
Missil; Kitchens of Distinction; Minor Threat;
Morrissey (The Smiths); Bob Mould (Husker
Du, Sugar); Alison Moyet; Peter Murphy
(Bauhaus); Holly Near; Nirvana; Pansy
Division; Phranc; Porno For Pyros/Janes
Addiction; Psychic TV (Throbbing Grissle);
Jimmy Sommerville (Bronski Beat,
Communards); Lou Reed (Velvet
Underground); Michelle Shocked; Thrill Kill
Kult; Tickle Trunk; Tribe 8; Two Nice Girls;
Wolfgang Press.
Good films:
Apartment Zero, dir. Martin Donovan
Being at Home With Claude, dir. Jean Baudin
Desert Hearts, dir. Donna Deitch
Edward II, dir. Derek Jarman
Even Cowgirls Get the Blues, dir. Cus van
Fellini's Satyricon, dir. Frederico Eellini
Forbidden Love, dir. Marge Petttgrew & Jinny
I've Heard the Mermaids Singing, dir.
Patricia Rozema
Law of Desire, dir. Pedro Almadovar
Looking for Langston. dir. Isaac Julian
Mala Noche. dir. Cus van Sant
My Beautiful Laundrette, dir. Stephen Frears
My Own Private Idaho, dir. Gas van Sant
Out: the lives of gay and lesbian youth, dir.
David Adkin
Paris is Burning, dir. Jenny Livingston
Passion Fish, dir. John Savles
Poison, dir Todd Haynes
Querelle, dir. Jean Genet
Savage Nights, dir. Cyril Collard
Swoon, dir. Tom Kalin
Thank God I'm a Lesbian, N.F.B.
Torch Song Trilogy, dir. Paul Bogard
Young Soul Rebels, dir. Isaac Julian
Out and Loud
Film Review
OUT: Stories of lesbiana and gay youth
dir. David Adkin, N.F.B.
by Jen Gilbert and Tanya Battersby
After watching this film we headed out to Denman Street looking for a place
to sit and write this review over a couple of beers. Upon entering a pub which
shall remain nameless, we were greeted with the comment, "Fucking queers!
Buy your beers and get the fuck out!"
(Enter dream sequence.) But we are OUT'" we scream as we rip off our
shirts to expose our pink triangle tattoos and multiple body piercings. The
obnoxious straight man keels over in a fit of cardiac arrest. (Back to reality.)
Jen: Can we leave? My last bashing wound ha ;n't healed yet.
Not wanting to defend ourselves in yet another rumble, we exit and head up
Davie to find refuge under a giant rainbow flag. Having settled down with our
over-priced coffee, we begin our review of the film Out: Stories of Gay and
Lesbian Youth :
Tanya: It had a good balance between Ihe struggles and obstacles queer youth
face, and the triumphs and strengths of individuals and communities.
J: Yeah, I liked the different cuts that contrast; d the threatening atmosphere of
homophobic straight society with the pure jan.piness and flamboyance of gay
and lesbian existence. Like the scene with Just as in Thunder Bay where they
filmed a "real man" throwing a case of beer ir.:o the hack of his pickup and the
cut to Justus dressed in black and chains ridiiu public transit.
T: There wasn't a fear of showing Ihe distinct ..'lements ol queer culture—like
drag queens, pride day celebrations and the Q1 eer Nation hulloween march.
Things that mainstream culture
would like to niu«e disappear. By
showing them, the film actively
opposes the supposedly liberal
stance that it's okay to be gay as
long as you don't flaunt it. Well,
we're gonna flaunt it. We are
different' The mainstream mindset
can't comprehend that queers might
not want to assimilate.
J: True, but at the same time I could
really sense the deparation some of
the teens in the film felt about not
fitting in and noi being accepted. I
was reminded that high school is a
wretched institution with its strict
enforcement of rormalness and
conformity. 1 can't imagine the
courage it would take to come out
in high school. The panel discussion
really highlighted some ofthe
prejudicial attitudes a gay or lesbian
would have to face in high school.
T: It was really important that the
effects of that kind of conformist
environment, from dropping out to
suicide to substance abuse, were explored. It n ade me realize how much more in
the way of support systems for queer youth arc needed, especially in rural areas
where a young person might have no idea that nther queers exist, let alone form
J: Conrad touched on that—the lack of support and services for native gay youth
in Winnipeg. In his case he was afraid that if he accessed any services he would
be sent back to the reserve.
T: Yet at the same time, it was clear that the
traditional acceptance of different expressions of
sexuality in native communities had been
destroyed by the process of colonization. The
revival of these traditions in sonie native
communities could be a subject for an entire film.
Conrad's support of Dionne, the transvestite who
was constantly being arrested for prostitution,
demonstrated the reconstruction of support
networks among native people a little bit.
J: Yeah, this film wasn't shy, it tackled some
difficult and complex issues. Still it was safe,
proclaiming the "we were born this way so don't
hate us" line. Although I myself have difficulties
with biological determinism I can see how such a
claim would be useful to lm
T: It's a justification of k>.rji
rights purposes, but I think I
dangerous when you cor-i
engineering that's going   n1
isolation ofthe gay gent ■
mention the fact that it t >i
and gays who have chos n tobetf*l*Wly erdos'tH:-:
know if it's biology of c1  'ice. ANOtt&ttfaldes   ' _'
bisexuals. This was mos     tffttck h» the ffbtt Whei* ''
that guv in the beginnin;     rid, "1 HnnJy fedtove
you're born straight or y  u'fehOTBgay/*
J: But he was in an assho
o«i. Oh my god, i.'j. &
:—did you *ee the back
T: Queers can be asshole
J: I heard queers like as1
T: And pussy holes.
J: While you're on the U >
of my girlfriend's head'1
T: Yes e\erybody. Jen's girlfriend was in the flick
I can't top that.
J: You can't "top" anything.
T: Maybe not anything, but how about anyone.
J: Tanya, your recent sexual escapades have
contributed to the degradation of your mind. I
suggest you go home and wash your pussy out
with soap.
T: But my girlfriend doesn't like the taste of soap.
J: My suggestion then would be a water based
lube. Wet has a pleasant citrus flavor and Probe is
virtually tasteless.
T: Speaking of sex, the film was a little shy on the
J: You're right, but at least it's fit for my mother.
By the way, do you think I could get an extra copy
to send to her?
T: Sure, copies are available for rental ($3/day) or
purchase at the NFB on Howe Street.
J: You're such a smart cookie.
Making hets queer(?
Book review
If You Seduce a Straight Person Can
You Make Them Gay?
by John DeCocco
by Heather.
When John DeCecco compiled his book, If You Seduce a Straight
Person Can You Make Them Gay? he wasn't writing an instruction
manual for lesbians and gays looking for a challenge. DeCecco's book is
actually some pretty heavy reading all about our views on sexuality and
the title is a tongue in cheek stab at the question of what a gay PERSON
or straight PERSON really is. In DeCecco's mind, neither really exist.
John DeCocco is the editor of the Journal of Homosexuality and an
avid promoter of social constructionalist thinking—that is, the study of
homosexuality in its historical context. To social constructionalists, the
question is not what causes homosexuality, but what causes homophobia.
Not "Why are some people gay?" but "Why do|
It's a far cry from the "sexual orientation i
with" stance that many gays have taken in the i
and most don't understand the heterosexist conf
Biological essentialism, according to DeCl
that sex is for procreation and that normal sexul
hand with a person's physical gender. In other woids,abj&yfOtt&trtgiBJJi
the womb is being chemically, neurologically, >n hwnUoaaHy
programmed to desire the opposite sex for mating P'.lEposes.
To explain homosexuality, biological esse|
"sexual orientation." suggesting that "if someth
could end up being "driven" towards their own|
problem is. science has spent a lot of money try
"something" is. and a lot of babies have been a|
Fortunately, biological essentialist thinkinj
dismissed by scholars for a number of reasons,
the human brain is formed at birth and our cherj
fluctuate throughout our lives. Thus it is unlike!
on us in the womb could still affect us the sameT
Secondly, when examining other cultures 1
Greece, one sees that sex has not always been
as a means of procreation. In both civilizations!
Your closet is your coffin. Heterosexuality isnt normal;
it's just common.
younger boys to initiate them into adulthood and there have been
numerous similar examples throughout history.
Social constructionism looks at cultures like ancient Greece and
asks "If homosexuality was considered normal in that society, why is it
considered abnormal by this one?" After all, a homosexual preference
is likely no different from a preference for a certain type of food or
music and no one's ever launched a genetic study into why some people
LOVE rap or brocolli. Nobody cares.
Social constructionists believe that we get our ideas about life from
our culture and if a person was raised in a bubble, so to speak, they'd be
ware of having a "sexual orientation." To them, the gay
ental program but rather a reaction to societal stigma,
rson with an overwhelming preference for the same
eel alienated growing up in an anti-gay society. To
ke being the only techno fan in a country bar or the
i activist on a game hunt.
lief to find someone else who thinks the same way,
you always become so much more vocal about your
actual existence of a gay person or straight person
constructionist viewpoint is the way they are, well,
~\d lesbians feel threatened by social constructionist
DeCecco has recieved a lot of Hack for his book from
jmmunity. However, in a world where science is
ch for a "gay gene" and possibly a cure for
You Seduce a Straight Person, Can You Make Them
-eading for all gays and lesbians... or shall we say,
i en to prefer same sex love."
ibest IftijoMu
inty amtmil rig)
b s such a
tnd-ftfeui *ob*1
vnvt 4»ft>rtr
though fhcwci
^orm. ga>s
itemkliHjaruJ Jnl
I he rtomo>cxtt{il
Making our
planet queer
cook Revevv
Fear of a Qi aer Planet:
Queer Pol it i ,s and Social Theory
Edited by Michael Warner
University of'Minnesota Press
by Elisabeth \
If you're
read, take thi>
wet snow but
you're throug
on heterosexu
queer movem
and classism :
favourite chaj
make this an ;
For baby
r   heavy theur> and * good
ho k H'i like plowing through
in KxlsnfiicK-uis.guorfoflM'i
1 >Ti of exciting perspectives
1 li Iture, tins development ai the
it ■indy»v.afiradimt#efci$m
tr: queer movwlieftt, aolj my
*t  HiwtantisGfimtfltidiftir'
get a feel for the intricate and complicated
realm of queer theory, this book is an
accessible startinr; point and departure point.
Another chapter was like a wet dream for me
(I'm a sociology student, you see) since nothing
makes me happier than a good, healthy
deconstruction of those sacred cows of
sociology, Marx and Engls.
Freud is not exempt from queer analysis
either, as he provides valuable insight into the
workings ofthe heterosexual mind. Poor
I reud, little did he know he would be such
uselul fodder for queer theorists.
Another chapter discuses our favourite
dV'onomer Carl Sagan (you know.
M-."Billyuns and Billyuns of Stawrs"). The
.itithor deconstructs the apparently benign
image ofthe man and woman on Voyager
II nai NASA launched into that place
"where no man has gone before" some
ti i eon years ago.
The picture ofthe man and the woman
is overtly straight, white, male and middle
cla.i.s. The man is standing square with his
arm raised in goodwill. The woman is
'up her iuai well floiflcd. Htuuunnm, but
«<ii no putoc hair Wtote that loxdy
(irmile fbssne «b«uld be is a hlnnli tptce
ai d itic Butn, welt faUdirlLlouicb vanity
rhcrah Uke iiBAmtVkei^asbb^ carrots
yoti con btijr at «flwrajr\ AppaviSHtO Cart
Sagon never few pjforife Cxxi m Ins day
Oh ya, tMifot%s^i)kwtUr&ti* the
ptctoffi, €^pybe)^««vcr seen a tag
If there is any criticism of this book it
will be that there is no Canadian content.
As far as I know there is no Canadian
anthology of queer writings in wide
distribution. Heck, I guess I can do
someting after I graduate now—I'll write a
book. Buy it, you'll like it.
Real men take it
up the ass.
'- "'   S^SL'.'
X' f'*t"nr ■
Vi -: 10   THE UBYSSEY
> i   <,*»» <t»w*.   •*  taw.   t w<u  <*«»«
drawing from Memories That Smell Like Gasoline by David
Wojnarowicz. Art Space Books; 1992
9 sit here, pen in hand
Wondering what 9 can write
To those who hate.
9 know that someone once said,
probably wrote.
The pen is mightier than the sword!"
Or some similar words
That really mean subjection and
But pens and words
Are allS have.
9 can not use a sword.
9 have seen too much blood already.
9 bleed daily from wounds
That will not heal.
Others bleed more than 9,
Others less: these are the fortunate
We bleed on the streets.
Punctured lungs, ruptured hearts.
Slashed wrists, severed heads.
All this gore, ail this blood
(Do you want it to remain invisible?)
Sickens me. too.
Do you think 9 want to write these
Live them?
We bleed in our homes.
But this blood is less messy.
9t's figurative blood: black and white
(and red and blue) Blood
Drawn by words and other lesser
Newspaper blood, magazine blood,
television blood.
The blood of our souls.
The blood that is spilled each time a
"fag"or "dyke"
Receives a stroke,
There, in the media.
This blood does not have to be removed
Jrom the streets, from the sidewalks.
9fitdid. more attention
Would be paid to it.
9i might be made real, too.
To those who hate.
But blood and swords
Are not what 9 want to write about.
(What do 9 want? What do 9 write
9'd rather write of love.
Of life.
But these are not allowed me.
They are not allowed us.
We bleed for these. We die and bleed,
And that blood is here
9n these words, in this text.
9t will not remain invisible
To those who hate.
9f We Cove
9t's been months
Since our mouths
Our first meeting.
9n the dark.
Through the park.
We walked
Getting to know
Each other.
At least this,
Before that kiss.
We believed.
Deceived of course.
Neither willing to admit
He was lonely, needy.
Qreedy for touch.
Qoing much
Too long,
Too long.
Without love.
Without life.
These denied to
Men like us who
Need each other.
Butano ther greed,
Some deeper need.
Drew us together,
Whether we knew it. or not:
Craving connection,
Consummation, confirmation
That we. too, were, are
That what we feel
9s not sinful.
Nor shameful.
We are not blameful
Jor needing love.
Above that same park
Where we walked in the dark
We now live:
Despite prohibitions.
Registrations of what
They deem real unions.
Our unification shakes
Their fortifica tion.
9f we live, if we love.
9t will fall
After all.
—Chris K. Evers FRIDAY 5 FEBRUARY 1994
Out, proud, and loud as an Asian lesbian in Vancouver
by Denise Tang
I am talking about being an
Asian lesbian in Vancouver. I do
not speak for all Asian lesbians. I
lived in Hong Kong for most of my
life and I was not out to anyone. I
lived in Vancouver for four and a
half years and I am still not as out
as I want to be. I have learned a lot
about what it means to be a lesbian
of colour and I have learned it
through white lesbians here.
I am not politically active in
the Asian lesbian community. A
part of me says that I am still
turning a blind eye towards racism
because sometimes it just hurts
too much to talk about it. A part of
me says that I am not a Chinese
Canadian, and I do not think I
have much in common with other
Asian lesbians in Vancouver.
But the truth is racism affects
all lesbians of colour. I stand out
in a bar full of white lesbians, yet
I am fully aware that the colour of
my skin contributes to my
invisibility in the lesbian
community. I see images of white
women in posters for women-
identified events. I find writings
by lesbians of colour marginalised
in anthologies of lesbian theory
and criticism.
I find a woman of colour
feminist writer, such as bell hooks,
is singled out to speak for all
women of colour. She is the token
black feminist. A book or an essay
by her signifies the women of
colour content in a full year course.
I find my behaviour being judged
by white lesbians on the basis of
their perceptions of my cultural
upbringing; not the way I feel, but
the way I am supposed to act as an
Asian lesbian.
Recently, it has become a
priority for lesbian and feminist
organizations to have the
representation of women of colour.
In my experience, I find that we
are discussed in collective
meetings and rescued by including
us in committees. We feel like we
can be a part of the decisionmaking process, only to find
ourselves being ignored and
treated as ornaments, trimmings
to an inner circle of "real" decision
We are in a permanent
peripheral position, since what
else can we ask for? We are
included although when we speak
up nobody wants to listen. We are
present although we are not asked
myths about Asian women as
heterosexual, exotic and passive.
I am oppressed racially in white
society as well as within the
lesbian community. It feels like
being trapped in a cage within a
This means that I also have a
smaller community to expect
support from. It is dangerous for
me to risk my connections with
the Asian community because if [
can only count on the lesbian
community, I am in big trouble.
For I know no matter how many
I would like to challenge the
narrow western notion of
lesbianism which is that lesbians
are largely white women with
short hair and combat boots. It is
much easier for a white lesbian to
be a visible part of the lesbian
community even if she has long
hair and wears a traditional
feminine outfit. I cut my hair short
to be recognized as an Asian
lesbian in the lesbian community.
This is my way of first becoming
visible as an Asian lesbian.
I  would  like  to  see   the
about what we think on issues
concerning us.
It is definitely hard for
lesbians to come out, but for an
Asian lesbian, I am blessed with
the additional burden of dispelling
lesbians would like to believe
otherwise, the lesbian community
is still a representation of the
larger society, with the same sorts
of "-isrns," such as racism, classism
and ableism.
expansion of lesbianism in
Vancouver to include Asian
lesbians and the differences within
the Asian lesbian community. It
is not alright to just accept the
existence of Asian lesbians, but at
Outing is not a
dead issue
the same time refuse to
acknowledge the fact that we do
not all speak the same language
and share the same beliefs.
Through getting more
involved with the Asian lesbian
community in Vancouver, I want
to unite with other Asian lesbians
and make myself more visible in
the lesbian community. I will
refuse to be Canadianized. I will
continue to speak out against
racism in the lesbian community.
I am very lucky to have a good
support network of lesbian and
bisexual friends who embrace my
differences. After all, all
differences are as important as
A social discussion group
called Dykes Unlimited meets
every Wednesday at 12:30pm in
the Women Centre (SUB 130). It
is basically a chit-chat group
talking about events coming up
in the lesbian community. It
would be very nice to see more
lesbians of colour joining us.
Groups like Asian Lesbians of
Vancouver, Gay Asians of
Vancouver Area and Asian
Support—AIDS Project are
bridging gaps between the Asian
community and the Asian lesbian
and gay communities.
A benefit  "Fun   &   Fund-
Raiser" for the Asian Support—
AIDS Project will be held on
Saturday 5 February at the
Odyssey (1251 Howe) from  7-
9:30pm. This is a Lunar New Year
Celebration for the Year of the
Dog. There will be folk dance
performances and readings, as
well as palm readings and Chinese
Calligraphy   and   Astrology.
Performances will start at 8:00pm
sharp. Tickets are available at
Little  Sisters  Art  and  Book
Emporium (1221 Thurlow) and
AIDS Vancouver (1107 Seymour).
Tickets will also be available at
the door until performance time.
by Joseph Callaghan
Five men are arrested in
Stanley Park for performing
"lewd acts" and newspapers
across the country print the
story. A student at the
University of Saskatchewan
includes a reference to the
lesbianism of Saskatchewan's
lieutenant governor in his
artwork and is expelled from
Why is the former printable
and the latter unmentionable?
Why is it "simply reporting the
news" to print stories that put
lesbigay people in a bad light
but an invasion of privacy to
acknowledge the homosexuality
of women and men in the
corridors of power?
The straight media
continues to portray queers as
the sick (AIDS), the bashed,
the "perverts," and the
discriminated. Yet they remain
silent when it comes to
reporting on a lesbian
politician, a bisexual singer, or
a gay former prime minister.
How can we achieve true
liberation when we are always
portrayed as the victim and
never the heroine or hero?
The breeder press justifies
its silence on queer public
figures using the privacy
argument: "The media has no
right to invade the private
lives of public people." Yeah,
When has the press ever used
this rationale in their dealings
with straight people? Indeed,
the opposite is true when a
public person is heterosexual.
(See the CBC's fireside chat
with Presto and his wife at
Christmastime if you need an
However, no questions are
asked and nothing is said
about the private lives of
public queers. Even when
reporters know that a certain
Vancouver senator is a lesbian
or a former BC NDP member
of parliament is gay, they
refuse to print this
information. The public knows
all about the spouses of
heterosexuals in the public eye
yet the partners of queers
disappear when the "news" is
As long as the media
continues to rigidly enforce
this double standard, our
struggle to be seen and heard
will be most difficult. As long
as our lives are deemed
unprintable, unspeakable,
unthinkable, our demands for
full and equal participation in
society will remain unfulfilled. THE UBYSSEY
An interview with the boy next door
interview by Niva Chow
10:37 p.m. We're stoned,
listening to the Eurythmics
'Jennifer" and talking about
the Tonya Harding and Nancy
Kerrigan chronicles. We've
iust finished the Province quiz
ind we've all been declared
members of the Harding fan
April 7th 1992.1 was tired, I
thought I had a tumour in the
back of my neck but they were
lymphnodes. So he took a blood
test and he told me.
When I found out I cried.
Then I went over to [his best
friend's] house and I told him. I
didn't think about how he would
react because I knew. There was
never an issue there.
Then I started telling people
and it just sorta got out of hand
because people who I didn't even
know knew. I wanted to tell them.
Then I didn't want anyone to
know and how it just doesn't
Since I have found out I have
changed in lots and lots and lots
}f ways. Everything is just
different. It has only been two
/ears—how that's affected me is
iust through people's ignorance.
[ don't want to say people's
ignorance though—it's just what
people fear.
Has my life changed? No—
yeah, it changes things. I don't
have to worry about retirement
so any money that I make I spend
for me. I don't have to worry about
retirement because I won't retire.
The talk goes on, but it
oauses because we have all
corgotten what we have talked
about. Madonnas's Justify my
Love is filtering in the
background. He is stoned...
Explanation diatribe.
I imagine that I got it
through sex. I don't know who,
when, or where because I don't
know how many thousands of
things—or how many men. But I
don't want to know. At first I
thought about it but now it's like
it doesn't matter. That was
yesterday, this is today.
Now I'm numb. It's hard for
me to make decisions about long
term things. You want to make
sure but you're never sure. Long
term things you know? I don't
know if it has changed the way
people percieve me. I think it
does but just because it's such a
media-hype. There's so much
confusion in the media that it
confuses everyone else. The
people aren't getting the proper
message. They're getting scared
and that changes the way people
look at me.
Verve's Slide Away is
playing on the cd player. The
room    is    an    interesting
dichotomy—four plants and
two sets of dried roses.
I'm not an angry young man.
There's a lot of things I've
changed—I can't just go with it.
I relate to this to being gay first
of all. It's like the same thing
because it is just another thing
for people to discriminate
I've been gay for 23 years so
I'm used to it. You don't get angry
but at the same time you just go
on because that's what you are
and that's what you do.
But I don't recommend
staying in the closet. That's
When you first asked me, I
said yes because it's going
somewhere where a lot of people
complete truth. They're trying to
get this message out—it's sorta
working but not really. I'm getting
fucked up—I want people to talk
to people that know. They can't
expect someone who needs ratings
to go with the plain and simple
are going to read it. It was sorta an
opportunity to open eyes and make
people talk about it—or gain some
knowledge. Some real stuff, not tv
A lot of info out there that
people get is distorted, not the
truth. They want people to watch
so they spice everything. I just
don't want people to be afraid.
I still have sex. At first it was
difficult, to say the least. It was
very hard—actually it wasn't hard
at all if you know what I mean.
Seriously, there were times
when I would lose my erection
because I'd start thinking about
it. It would be so bad—I was so
I would tell some people
before, if it was just going to be a
one night stand then I wouldn't
say anything. Unless they would
ask, but it was always safe.
A condom broke once but
,   because of that I'll never start
anything with anybody before
telling them. I will never ever
act again without telling people
I'm HIV first. It'll still be safe-
We love k.d.lang.
The point is that yes, we still
have sex and yes it's possible to
have safe sex with us. You just
have to be really careful. You
have to double bag.
In terms of reception, the gay
community has accepted me
more, but it's because they're
educated more.
There is a distinction between
HIV and AIDS. When you have
AIDS you usually get an
opportunistic infection and your
immune system screws up, but
before that you're just like
everyone else.
Except for fatigue—I don't
have as much energy as I used to
If I had to go back, would I
change anything? No, because I
have learned alot from everything
that I have done. I wouldn't want
to not learn the stuff I have
learned. And that was all
yesterday, this is today.
xuality is not st fantasy
by Tenia Trepanler
I identify myself as a bisexual. Not because if s trendy.
Not to shock. Not to place myself
higher on the hierarchy of
oppression. Not because it's
intirguing. But because it
I don't want people to be afraid
ofbisexuality.both in themselves
and in others.
likewise, some lesbians have
been known to fall in love with a
man, or wind up having sex with
a man. Some men who identify
themselves as homosexual decide
to get married to a woman.
People from both the heterosexual world and the homosexual
world seem to have reservations
about bisexuals. The typical
responses from the heterosexual
is just as difficult as coming out as
a gay person. The response is pretty
much the same; polite silence and
change of subject, or blantant
There is evidence that bisexu-
ality has existed and has been
acceptable in different societies at
different times. The bisexuality
that existed in classical Athens
was one in which older male
Many heterosexuals have
had at least one homosexual experience in their lifetime. These
kinds of experiences are usually
dismissed as a phase, an
exception or some kind of
perverse experimentation. Many
try to deny that such an experience has taken place at all.
community are that bisexuals
must be promiscuous or confused.
Typical responses from the
homosexual community are that
bisexuals are simply
heterosexuals who are curious and
who don't have the guts to let go of
their heterosexual conditioning.
Yet, coming out as a bisexual
citizens could choose as the object
of their love a boy, slave or woman.
There is also evidence of a more
equitable kind of bisexuality in
Lesbos and Sparta, in which women
had relationships with women as
well as being married. In India,
many examples have survived of
women, who would have been mar
ried to men, celebrating lesbian
love in their poems.
Some friends and I were
discussing   the    merits    of
bisexualtiy on a global scale in
terms of population control. We
envisioned a world in which it
woul d be assumed that everyone
started out bisexual. Assuming
that half the population ended
up with same sex partners, we
could curb the world's population explosion and we might
have a chance of surviving on
this planet for a little longer.
All this to say that both
homosexuality and heterosexu-
ality are natural, normal kinds
of sexuality; one or the other or
both may exist in one person.
As Deneuve, a lesbian
magazine states "love transcends gender".
The stigma attached to
bisexuality in women is particularly acute as a result of
what Adrienne Rich calls
"compulsory heterosexuality".
In her essay by the same title
she states,
"The he of compulsory female heterosexuality today
afflicts   not just  feminist
scholarship,     but     every
profession, every reference
work, every curriculum, every
organizing attempt, every relationship or conversation over
which it hovers. It creates,
specifically,    a    profound
falseness,  hypocrisy,   and
hysteria in the heterosexual
dialogue, for every heterosexual
relationshipis lived in the queasy
strobelight of that lie. However
we choose to identify ourselves,
however we find ourselves
labeled, it flickers across and
distorts our lives."
I hope to see a break down in
compulsory heterosexuality and
a legitimization of bisexuality as
an identity that is not a
compromise, that is not a
betrayal, and that does not stem
out of confusion. FRIDAY  5 FEBRUARY 1994
Queer is a state of mind
by Kent Hurl
This is about being queer. When I was asked to write an article for thi s issue,
I took a long time deciding on how to approach it. I wondered if I should take a
political angle on a specific issue that is close to gay hearts. I also wondered if
maybe I could discuss the dynamics of same-sex sex (for those of you who still
cannot fathom two women or two men giving each other indescribable pleasure,
among other things).
I even wondered about simply the idea of exposing some of my thoughts on
paper on anything that has to with gay life to an audience that may skip over this
article, or read it and then mock it, or even maybe just burn the paper out of fear
of learning about something that is not depraved or twisted in any way.
This is just the way I am. I mean, it all goes back to that "nature vs. nurture"
thing again, right? There can be an internal struggle for a lot of homosexuals over
the uncertainty of whether or not they were born that way, or whether they were
perhaps neglected or ridiculed and just plain forced into it. Who knows?
I wondered the same things about myself. A typical example of the above
train of thought might go something like this:
Gee, there seems to be hair growing out of different parts of my body all of
a sudden. And am I ever horny all the time too. But isn 't this crazy, I just don't
seem to be thinking of (the opposite sex) when I touch myself
This may enter the mind of a pubescent (and homosexual) twelve year old.
After that might come:
Is this noimal? Am I a freak in a suburban variety show? Is anyone else
feeling this way ? I know I played in the nude for a long time and had a high level
of curiousity with my best friends when I was in elementary school, but that
doesn 't mean I'm gay does it?
I am sure you can start to see the almost unbearable anxiety building in a
young person's already fucked up head. I am also sure you can try to believe the
truth behind a statistic which tells us that one-third to one-half of all teenage
suicides are committed because they can do nothing about themselves; nor is
there anything they can do to prevent a life of hideous exploitation and
discrimination, except just to end it.
It doesn't have to be like that though. If people managed to seek out just one
iota of individuality from themselves, they wouldn't blindly play follow-the-
leader and allow their minds to be manipulated by small-minded ignorant fucks
who have nothing better to do than spend time with each other concerned with
everyone's business except their own.
I think organized religion plays a key role here. I respect the importance of
one's own spiritual awareness, and if that spills over into fellowship then that's
fine too. However, when I see people gathering to listen to "the word" and
demonstrating their faith in front of each other, and it involves blatant infringement
dussR Nation
on my HUMAN rights as a gay person or a women's HUMAN rights (noticed
I have not used the word SPECIAL rights) or anyone's rights as a fucking
human being, that's when a problem develops for me.
Honestly, I don't want to believe that all religions are patriarchal, hate-
fostering institutions that teach criminal ideas, but I can't help it when I hear
pathetic jokes like, "I thought it was Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve."
Go fuck yourself if you think that's funny because it's not. All it does is
waste time—mine and yours. I don't want to appear bitter and nothing but a
whiner, but if we all paid more attention to matters that truly threaten us all—
like war and starvation and AIDS and corrupt governments—we would
channel our energy where it's really needed. We make wide-open spaces for
hate to play in yet we can hardly squeeze love in.
If there really is a god who is all-loving, I have a hard time believing he/
she/it would want us acting like that. But whatever; I don't ignore progress
either. Colorado passes anti-gay state laws and an all-gay programming radio
station is on the air in DenveF—KGAY.
AIDS funding is allocated through a red-tape strainer, but every day we' re
learning how to live longer and longer with it. People with AIDS are just that—
people. Don't ever call them victims of AIDS. That makes you sound really
sad, believe me.
There's so much work for everyone to do, but I just don't think everyone
has been trained right for the job, you know what I mean? I'm still reasonably
happy though. But how could I not be—my family means everything to me and
all of my excellent friends get me through everything. And that makes it all
worth it
4 PUBLIC THAT    >      >
SIXTY Y(S*«i if wc cam/
Many people will state that
they are sick and tired of hearing
about homophobia, claiming that
anti-gay discrimination in our
society does not exist, and that
homosexuals and bisexuals just
shouldn't "flaunt it" anyway.
It would be nice if
discrimination ended, but
thousands of Canadians each
year—for no other reason than
their sexual orientation—are
beaten up, fired, or kicked out of
their homes. While, in recent
years, society has become more
accepting of homosexuality (and
less so of bisexuality), it still has
a long way to go in recognizing
homosexual rights. The ever-
present possibiltiy of a "rights
rollback" faces everyone in
A vocal minority still claims
that homosexuality is either
morally wrong, or a sickness, or
both, despite overwhelming
scientific and social-scientific
Canadians often believe
themselves to exist in a society of
equality and tolerance.
Surprisingly, we continue to
ignore or excuse bigotry on the
part of our politicians and public
leaders. I speak here of the
homophobia—ranging from mild
to rabid—exhibited clearly, yet
euphemistically, by leading
federal politicians.
Let's make no mistake here.
The "arguments" advanced to
justify prejudice against gays,
lesbians, and homosexuals are of
such a flimsy and obviously
prejudiced nature as to reflect
comically on those who believe
them. Given this and the reality
of discrimination, anyone who
won't take a stand in favour of
full equality rights, including
spousal benefits, lacks the
maturity, moral strength, and
power of reason to function as a
normal adult, let alone as a
responsible public servant.
Because the political
selection procedure cannot
prevent the participation of such
individuals, those who truly care
must take a stand. This means
pointing out and trying to correct
prejudice wherever it is found.
This also means refusing to vote
for a member of any political party
that won't take an explicit stand
for full equality rights. For, while
a particular individual may not
spout anti-gay rhetoric,
association with those who do
reflects poorly (I say fatally) on
that person's moral convictions.
In particular, western
Canada has seen the rise of a new
federal party whose leaders are
not expressing "rational" opinions
for "family values." The leaders
ofthe Reform party have publicly
expressed opinions which are
bigoted in the most literal sense.
Most other mainstream parties,
while taking a milder or even
softly gay-positive stand, refuse
to enact gay-positive policy.
Many western Canadians
have chosen to ignore these
messages, hungry for a change,
thinking, perhaps, that "they
don't really mean it." Wake up,
evidence to the contrary. They
also think they have a right to
have their bizarre beliefs reflected
in the law, often claiming that
bilesgays want some kind of
"special privilege." These
"privileges" are nothing less than
that which is guaranteed for
: Rodney Snooks
heterosexuals: protection from
employment discrimination,
school curricula which reflect the
reality of the possible range of
family types, and spousal rights
for long-standing cohabitive
Many in this group have gone
to the point of claiming the
existence of some kind of gay
conspiracy to corrupt society. It
may be said that there is a
conspiracy theory for everything,
but this one is believed not by a
small group of fanatics, but by
many ordinary folks, some in
positions of power, both in Canada
and the US. This is clearly shown
in recent anti-gay measures in
several American states, and by
the anti-intellectual positions
taken by members ofthe executive
of the Canadian women's group
Real Women, who have much
influence within the Reform party.
Others who claim to take a
more "reasonable" view against
homosexuality should not be taken
seriously. A "rational" position
stating that homosexuality is
wrong or sick does not exist. If one
looks at any credible medical
journals after, say, 1975, one will
not find any convincing evidence
for these. Why? Because none
Furthermore, every society
throughout history has had a
queer minority. Historically, there
is every reason to believe that
queer impulses are permanently
embedded within the minds of a
certain percentage of the
population, which is much larger
than most people think. Many,
perhaps most, people occasionally
experience homosexual impulses.
The "flaunting" argument
reminds us that the most well-
meaning people can still maintain
their prejudices despite all good
efforts. Contrary to common
belief, the vast majority of
bilesgays have sexual habits that
do not differ from those of most
heterosexuals in terms of
frequency, intensity, etc.
While, as noted earlier,
bilesgays have experienced a
recent increase in support from
the mainstream community, we
must never forget the softness of
this support—let no one think that
somehow the "battle is over." It's
just beginning.
wake up, WAKE UP! When voters
approve such politicians, licence
is given to the less articulate
bigots, the ones who think they
have reason, or even a duty, to
Rodney Snooks
beat up homosexuals. For this
reason, homophobic leaders are
responsible in a very literal sense
for anti-gay violence.
There is some hope for the
the Ubyssey
5 February 1994
The Ubyssey is a founding member of Canadian University Press
The Ubyssey is published Tuesdays and Fridays by the Alma Mater Society of the
University of British Columbia. Editorial opinions are those of the staff and no1
necessarily those ofthe university administration, or ofthe publisher. The editorial
office is Room 241K of the Student Union Building. Editorial Department, phone
822-2301; advertising, 822-3977; FAX 822-9279        circulation 12,000
The lights dimmed. By the window overlooking the mud-slewn tragedy sat
Tessa Moon, Gerry Straathofq and Trevor Presley. Beside them, Paul
Dayson and Siobhan Roantree lamented the loss of dignity that seemed so
apparent. Ted Young-Ing and Christine Reynard thought different however.
They, along with Sarah O'Donell and Rodney Snooks didn't believe the
libelous rumours that had been infiltrating the citizenry. Joseph Callaghan
amd Christine Price plotted with their leader Heather—just Heather to seek
revenge on those who had spread the vicious lies. Niva Chow sat with Kent
Hurl in the corner and dropped a ton of cid and flew into oblivion together.
Taivo Evard, on his own narcotics, marched up and down, constantly
repeating the same thing: It is medically uncorrect to oppose The Ubyssey.
Liz van Assum sat on the bank fishing while Gregg McNally cleaned his gun,
muttering, "Laugh at me will they?" Tanya Battersby and Graham Cook and
Steve Chow prepared a noxious mixture of poison dart serum while Tania
Trepanier and Sara Martin painted coal on each other's faces and donned
their balaclavas. Denise Tang and Kristian Armstrong and Gary Francesini
fleed in a panic to the surplus store for more supplies. Scott Hayward
laughed and laughed and laughed. And Mat X sat watching everything, not
saying a whole lot.
Coordinating Editor: Douglas "strange'Terrls
News Coordinator Graham "uncertain" Cook
News Editors: Sara "out there" Martin, Taivo "outlandish" Evard
Culture Coordinator: Steve "lost" Chow
Culture Editor: Ted "queer" Young-Ing
Photography Coordinator: Siobhan "bizarre" Roantree
Production Manager: Liz "queer" van Assum
present, much of it owing to the
general growing acceptance of
homosexuality in Canada, and
the American public's rejection
of Pat Buchannan's famous
family values speech at the
Republican party convention of
1992. But for those who see great
importance in ending the culture
of bigotry, it is imperative that in
our voting habits, at the very
least, we place this value at a
higher level of priority than
deciding between vague and
basically identical economic
personal safety
tot women by women
Tuesday, February 8th — Tuesday, March 15th
3:30 - 5:30 (6 weeks)
Room #205     Feb. 8th, 15th, 22nd - March 8th
Room #215     March 1st
Room #213     March 15th
(2 weeks) 11 am - 5 pm
Room #215     Feb. 20th (Sunday)
Feb. 27th (Sunday)
Subsiduaries available for childcare
through 9. centre
Please pre-pay in SUB room #266 (Business office) FRIDAY 5 FEBRUARY 1994
Letters to the staff...
Stop Ctearcutting
As Dean of Forestry Clark
Binkley claims (The Ubyssey, Jan
28), the Faculty of Forestry curriculum at UBC has been revised to
some extent to the sensitivites of
the environment. However, being
in the position of power and influence such as Dean of Forestry and
a Director at West Fraser Timber
Company, has Clark Binkley made
any changes to the destructive
clearcut practices that are continuing in the pristine forests of
BC? I think not. As recent as last
fall, the BC Government was still
permitting clearcut practices in old
growth forests in this province,
much of which are exported as raw
logs or used as pulpfor phone books
and toilet paper. If only Mr. Binkley
were as outspoken about ending
clearcut practices in BC as he is in
defending his department! Ah...
never happen.
F.GS. Tsai
Graduate Studies
Looking for a Helpful
To whomever may receive this
letter and be so kind to read and
understand, I am a Black, Indian
American prisoner serving time
within an American prison within
the United States. I lack access to a
typewriter at the present time, so I
hope you will excuse the condition
of this letter.
I am a writer and I frequently
write about topics of substance
abuse and the oppressive nature of
my peoples existence in this country under the control and ultimate
exploitation of our peoples by a
corrupt government for several
hundred years. I am currently writing a book in non-fiction form portraying the experiences of negro
Indian peoples whom Fve had the
opportunity to have known in this
lifetime, like myself, people who
have persevered much racial injustice, often surviving under very
wretched living conditions at wits
end in this so called land of "milk
and honey."
I am writing to you mostly in
hopes that the reader of this letter
may post a notice or request for me
to locate someone around ypur
campus there who may take interest in advising me in the preparation and publication end of my
writing endeavor. I would be willing to correspond with anyone also
and share my writing, embracing
various topics including poetry and
I would certainly be sure to answer
all letters. Anyone can also feel free
to ask any questions. Please respond.
Antoinne Eugene Evans
P.O. Box 6000, #138870
Carson City, MI 48811
on the defence
It seems that not an issue
of The Ubyssey can go by without
some confused person decryinghow
white men are being oppressed by
the "forces of the politically correct."
The "political correctness" argument is nothing less than an attack
on affirmative action,
multiculturalism and the ability to
Those who oppose "PC"
positthat anti-racists, feminists and
lesbian andgayrights activists have
taken control of the University.
Nothing could be further from the
truth. In fact women and people of
colour generally make up less than
10% of Boards of Governors and
top-level administration posts. In
most faculties white men still take
up about 80% of tenured positions.
Despite the vast cries of "censorship* by the anti-PC campaigners, they have been unable to point
to a single firing or expulsion for
racism, sexism or homophobia. The
most they have come up with are a
few resignations and temporary
suspensions, such as that of Professor Yaqzun at UNB, following a
high degree of criticism. Should the
resultofthis be, however, that those
people who oppose racism, sexism
and homophobia stop criticizing?
A closer look at the evidence reveals that the real people
whose free speech is under attack
are those on the left. In 1991 several campus newspapers were shut
down for printing an article entitled The Gay Man's Guide to Safe
Sex." At this campus, many departments are still keeping blacklists against people who refused to
cross the picket line duringthe 1992
strike. Women who have suffered
sexual harassment cannot even
make a complaint without fear of
having their confidentiality being
For more information and
discussion, come to the meeting of
the International Socialists in room
228 Buch. on Friday, February 11
"In Defence of Political Correctness."
Dan Moore
International Socialists
u James H. Steiger"
When I first read "Sex Sells in
AMS Elections," a Perspective piece
by one "Fernando Avendano" in the
February 1 Ubyssey, I was angry.
This piece seemed to be nothing
more than character assassination.
It seemed as if, lacking the courage
and good grace to accept disappointment in the recent AMS elec-
101.9  fM
T-bird Hockey vs. Manitoba ?*** February 4th,
commentators: Brian Wleser & Marc Dinsdale
T-bird B-baU vs. Alberta ^f^ February 5th,
commentators: Chris Uren & Doug Richards
'tune in, turn on, flop out"
tions, "Avendano" engaged in petty
revenge that he tried to disguise as
some kind of public service message.
But I wondered. What appeared as a totally transparent
smear against two young women
who entered the recent election,
campaigned in good faith, and won
fairly (but evidently failed
"AvendanoVideological litmus test)
would not fool anyone with a 3- digit
IQ for more than a millisecond.
Would anyone be so dull of wit, so
flabby of mind, so devoid of imagination as to try to foist such a piece
seriously on even a moderately intelligent readership?
Besides, the piece was so politically incorrect! If such comments
had been written by, say, a "white
male professor" in Counselling
Psychology about a leftist female
candidate, the journalistic upheaval from the Ubyssey editorial
staff would have made the
Hiroshima mushroom cloud look
like a puff of cigarette smoke! Yet
here were such comments, written
about a candidate the Ubyssey editors opposed in the recent elections,
and they made not a peep. How
could they expose themselves so
nakedly as totally sexisthypocrites?
Wouldn't they have said something?
If finally dawned on me: I was
reading a very clever parody. "Sex
Sells in AMS Election" was a kind
of mim-Amadeus, "Avendano" its
Salieri. Bravo, gentlemen!!
James H. Steiger, PhD.
Women Students' Office Sexual Harassment Office Student Health Outreach Ho^
Did You Know?
Women face the greatest risk of
violence from men they know.
45% of all women experience violence by men known to them
(dates, boyfriends, partners, friends, family & neighbours etc.)
23% of women experience violence by a stranger
25% of all Canadian women have experienced
violence at the hands of a marital partner
For more information or help, call:
Women Students'Office          822-2415               AMS Safety Hazard Line 822-SAFE
Student Health Outreach         822-4858               Sexual Harassment Office 822-6353
RC.M.P.                                   224-1322               Student Counselling 822-3811
WAVAW/Rape Crisis 255-6344
'■'oh ipeanno miE9H Juapms aayjO Iusuussbjbh prnxas a^mo 4siuspms u3uioa\
*    ARTS   &   GRAPHICS
t    SALE   OF   THE   YEAR!
Wednesday February 9t/i, J994 S:30 am ■ S:30 pm
• 40% Off All Other Non-Featured
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izfflgl40% Off All In-Stock Arts
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(604)8 22-2665 FAX (604) 82 2-8 5 92 THE UBYSSEY
Ron Athey: A fatal attraction for life.
by Ted Young-Ing
Ron Athey is a
freak. fl And he
lets the world
know it. fl He's
an intimidating
homo. His shaved
head is heavily
tattooed and
pierced—as is his
whole body. He
looks hardcore;
fierce, even, fl
It's hard to define
what Ron is
known for. He's a
artist whose
medium is the
body. His
always involve
blood and ritual.
fl His most recent
project was
directing the new
Pornos For Pyros
video, Sadness.
He also is part of
the 'First Family
of Fuck'. Club
Fuck was a queer
SM clubnight that
went on in a
dingy LA
restaurant for
several months—
until it was shut
down by the
police. Ron was
one of the dancer/
performers there.
I'm a little anxious as I
approach his house. My only
contact with Ron comes from
seeing him at clubs and in
his performaces. He usually
has a whip by his side; he's
usually clad in leather or
uniforms. Someone recently
told me about Ron's
penchant for giving enemas
and fisting. All this makes
me nervous to meeting him
face to face.
But he's surprisingly
pussy cat-like. When he
invites me in, I get the
impression that he's a little
nervous as well.
from me
in his
house in
of Los
open. What I thought would
be a 20-minute q&a
interview turns into a 3 1 /2
hour discussion.
Ron was raised by his
parents to be a minister. At
14, he'd spent all his life
around adults, emmerced in
a surrealistic world of god
and the scriptures.
"It's a real unrealistic
way of growing up.
Everybody believing I was
this Holy Child.
"It made me what I am.
Fanaticism, extremism—
that's me. I was raised with
it. I don't resent the texture."
Ron's life has more
texture than most. He went
through the seventies and
eighties a frustrated and
alienated queer punk bent on
self-destruction. He became
a teenage junkie, and spent
several years hooked on
been <
clean for
eight |
now. He
still feels
but he's
a little
less self-
the most
LA Gay
stood as
the main
of the Club Fuck float. He is
immediately visible and
recognizeable atop the float:
tattoes, piercings and clad in
a leather jockstrap and
Ac ffto flrraf nacuirt a
outsider—even within the
gay community. His
fanaticism and hardcore
attitudes ensured that he
was never quite accepted in
the gay community. Still a
punkboy at heart, Athey's
identity comes partially from
undermining the System
which tries to hold him
"I've always
instinctively hated anything
that goes on in the
mainstream," says Ron.
Athey is dissappointed
that he was booed at the
parade. "You put all these
expectations in the gay
parade; like you're
celebrating your diverse
community." But somehow,
he was also not surprised.
I sense that a part of Ron
really gets off on being
disenfanchised, though. I tell
him about Situationism, a
quasi-political anarchist art
movement that strove to
turn our "spectacle" culture
upside-down. The
Situationists lived life as
active participants, not
spectators, and saw
"shooting a gun into a
faceless crowd" as the
ultimate act of "negating the
negation." Then I ask him
about his own political
"I think I'm a
situationist. I'm completely
schizophrenic on everything;
I can relate to absolute
violence and disorder and I
want to remain as illegal as
a side
of me
can get
better if
we just
"I'm a
with a
lust for
life. I
for any
I just believe in getting up
every day, and having a
good time, and getting
something done."
A fatalist with a lust for
straight out about being
positive, too. It's just another
thing that I've never cared if
it's put me more on the
outside of things. It can be a
rotten deal, and it's no big
deal at the same time. It's
been seven years now, and
I'm still healthy.
Being HIV was a kick in
the ass for Ron. "After being
diagnosed positive, I felt
like, what if you die in a few
years? Are you happy with
your life the way it is? I can't
just go to work, go to dinner
with a friend, go to a 12-step
meeting and then go to bed,
I'ts just not rich
"I don't want
to be waiting for
the day I die; I
want to raise a lot
of hell before
My mind
wanders and I'm
thinking about a
good friend who
just started AZT
constantly erasing
names from my
phone book of
peple who have
died. I've desensitized a lot.
I'm not going to rum into a
grieving machine and let it
eat me up.
Ron Athey is known for
staging shows that mix S/M
ritual, personal revelation
and performance.
His most recent
performance piece, 4 Scenes
From A Harsh Life, deals with
issues of transcendence,
addiction, fetishism and the
increasing automitization of
the human being.
The third scene—the
most powerful scene in 4
Scenes is about Ron's
addiction and suicide
attempts. He jabs 20 syringes
in his arm, ties off the other
arm and slashes his wrist.
Then he gauges his face.
Blood streams down his face.
Then he begins to climb a
rope ladder, into a stream of
were finished and I was
levitating and there was a man
with all black tattooes next to
me and we were rotating
around each other and we
levitated up into the light."
It's a scene that involves
healing—an important new
direction in his art.
"It's difficult for me to
watch this [a video copy of the
performance]. It still feels like
I'm there. I'm too personally
Ron shows me the new
tattooes on his chest. He got
them while he was in London
doing his performance piece.
I ask him about his facial
"It feels really natural on
me to have my face tattooed.
It's a line that I've crossed that
certainly I wouldn't egg
anyone else on to do."
"It's not enough to be gay
and it's not enought to be
queer. It's a way of setting
yourself apart form people.
It's something that does have
ancient meaning. It has a lot of
different sides to it."
Because of his longstanding interest in body
modification, Ron has become
a spokesperson for the
Modern Primitive movement.
"It's important that I'm
queer. But somehow because
I've been in for a long time,
I've embodied a movement, I
guess. It's not just me people
f „  interested
^ f  in, it's
'     the
'   *   roots of
'  1   the
4       iraeiHt
to be
Ron is a
being a
that he
like a
that his
in Idaho look at me and think,
"freak'. I don't want to give
them fuel for fire.
But he is an anarchist who
doesn't really care about what
people think about him. Part
of urban tribalism is about
finding a tribe; Ron has a close
family that he cares for.
"I like creating little
families of people that think
the same way to protect and
love, instead of just being
some big hippy and loving
everyone at random.
"I just don't think I'm
going to change the world
with my smiling, sunny face.
I'm a fatalist. I have no hope
£ 14.    T/ 1--1.-   3       .   V •     .


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