UBC Publications

UBC Publications

UBC Publications

The Ubyssey Feb 6, 1998

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 Bernice Abbott, J.R. Ackerley, Jane Ad
Hans Christian Andersen,, W.H. Aude
Bacon, Lord Baden-Povi/ell, Joan Bae
'in, Benjamin Banneker,
Natalie Barney, Riche
ich, William Beckford
, Ruth Benedict, GSad
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klbee, Alexander I, Horatio Alger,
Josephine Baker, Ja
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Becher, Ludwig Van
nard Bernstein, The
?Vi*-s Lil6S¥6f| jil
Cowara Hart L.-ane Quentin
Samuei De.anev, Charles De
Zaharias, Marqaret ■■-
Duncan, i r-omes EaKins,
es Bowles, Malcolm
n Britten, Romaine Brofiks, Marqaret Wise
tJli4C3»#|   VJlwi II i   Dili H\C|   ro
"yron, Paul Cadmus, julius
inston Church
oy Lonn,Jac
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laghilev, Emily
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ichaei Foucau!^ Anne frank, Barney
Rudy Gernreich, Andre Gate Sir Jol
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nsoerry, Mars<
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I*      Vi "MS *   ■* V* «*       I    111*1
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Audre'Lorciv, Louis XII
ui* vvt^ifiini
Whitman., Ooliy'
Virqinia Wool*. Alexander
(e Or-kj! i, Boo 9ai is Sain* pjl
larcei Freest, Pi Yi, Mary,Re
rV-"!- *. • v=l>>~, wait
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^* , THE UBVSSE***>
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Earn Extra Income. Let's have coffee.
No obligation Call 689-0960 Today.
TRAVEL. teach EngBs-h: 5 days/40 hrs
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45 min/ no interview /anonymous
questionnaire 822-4919/
gamache@netinfo.ubc.ca before Feb 28
Need extra income? Earn up to $ 1500/
Month selling subscriptions for new
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limited. Call 528-9714
Start Your Own Fraternity. Zeta Beta Tau
is looking to start a new chapter. If you
are interested in academic success, networking and the opporunity to make
friends in a non-pledging brotherhood,
contact Bret Hrbek at <zbt@zbtnation-
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or saie
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new clutch, new brakes plus many other I
features. 7393171.
1975 VW Westphalia camperized, good
condition $3500 689-1792
I UncHra-Y Needed- House With Garden j
For short student film in February. Lv. j
Msg. 274-0882 j
|part timf
j Rooms are available in the UBC single I
\ student residences for qualified women
| and men applicants. Single and shared
rooms in both "room only" and "room
1 and board" residences are available.
| Vacancies can be rented for immediate
occupancy in the Walter H. Gage,
Fairview Crescent Totem Park, Place
Vanier, and Ristumeikan-UBC House
Residences (Availability is limited to
some residence areas and room types).
Applicants who take occupancy of a residence room are entitled to reapplica-
tion (returning student) privileges for a
"guaranteed" housing assignment for
the 1998/99 Winter Session. Please contact the UBC Housing Office in Brock
Hall for information on rates, availability and conditions of application. The
Housing Office is open from 8:30 am to
4:00 pm weekdays, or call 822-2811
during office hours.
ESL Eng. Lit Tutor/Teacher available
734-9193. mhayter@directca
Trouhle With English? Masters Degree
Tutor available for undergraduates
and E.SX. students. Call 331-1686
Bkubousi? Bi? Gay? Club Vancouver Spa \
\ For  Men.   No  I.D.  or  Membership J
j Required. Open 24 hours every day. j
I Students  1/2 price anytime.339 West >
! Pender St 681-5719
| Kenyan Conference at UBC. Saturday,
I Feb.   7th  at  224-0505,   fmaina@   *
| unixg.ubc.ca for more information .
\ Fight Tlie Power. Join students for a  >
j free Tibet. 734-0537 j
: Veggie Lunches every Monday 12:30 - \
I 2:30 Grad Student Centre Penthouse. \
| $4.00 All-you-can-eat \
\evenings and/or weekends
to start:
ENVIRO LAW 4th annual confer-   I
ence. Sat Feb 7, 9AM in Law
School's Curtis Building. $5 or by j
donation. Topics: UBC Official       j
Community Plan, protecting j
urban habitat. \
BLACK HISTORY month events.
Feb 22-28 Art Display in SUB
JGallery (inc. videos). Feb 15
!7:30PM, Urban Jam in Pit (inc.
Isome presentations) $3. Feb 27
(Speeches, spoken word and
jdance. Mar 5 Speaker on
rideology and the Social
^Construction of Race," SUB 215
II— LJ I i L CIi L-
it Copies Plus 2 e« ■
To run your
own ads or
tall our
department at
Would you like to
•Earn $10,000 this upcoming summer?
•Gain valuable experience to assist you in a future career?
Due West Student Painting is looking for motivated people
to fill summer management positions. Contact your
student recruitment centre or give us a call
(Learning 1 Oth anniv. celebration
JUBC President Speakers' Series: \
(Sacajawea and Her Sisters: Images!
|and Indians. How images have j
(mythologised, idealised, and sub- \
fverted Native women. Feb 26, \
J12PM-2PM at Sty-Wet-Tan 1985
jWest Mall. \
tMuseum of Anthropology after       j
(APEC and launching lawsuit
(against RCMP and PM's office.
buesFeb 10. 10:30AM Street the- \
jatre at MOA; 11AM smudging cer- j
(emony; 11:30AM press conference and Public Forum. Free
(admission to the Museum until
[Litigation in same sex cases. Tues
Feb 10, 7PM, Faculty Conf room
sat UBC Law School. Featuring Judy
fParrack, Susan Boyd, Claire Young
and others. Presented by Centre
(for Feminist Legal Studies.
student input makes it happen
A Referendum?
On February 6,9 and 10th there will be a
referendum asking you whether or not you
would like the Thunderbird Shop to continue
with its business operation. Please be informed.
iff the February 3rd edition of The Ubyssey, Sean YajajspJl
the Thunderbird Shop's Lease. He noted there wer#|lr»iJ|rities b
Siike Cookies (an exiStipg private bus||fe)^^to br^rr^iSue
|he AMS position if we *-#i dsansvpip^ pfi
_ ^.^ ^ concerns'aboufttfie Referendum concerning
i^eai^:ffe.decision made by the AMS in 1989 to dose
iness. He suggested he would consider
Questions in the letter:
According to a Vancouver Sun article (January 14,
1989), Duke's was employing 15 students at $5 an
hour. The article noted that the AMS was proposing
to pay its employees in Blue Chip $7.40 an hour; our
records show this was the wage when Blue Chip
began. Nancy Toogood, the AMS Food & Beverage
Manager, adds that today the starting wage is $8.50.
She also says that there are currently 35 students
working at Blue Chip.
So the answer is Yes, Blue Chip created more
student jobs at higher wages.
The average rent paid by Dukes over its last three
years in the SUB (1986-87 to 1988-89) was $31,091.
In Blue Chip's first full year of operation (1990-91), it
made a surplus of $71,537—but this figure does not
include the following amounts deducted from Blue
Chip's total revenue:
Grant to Emergency
Student Loans
Support Allocation:
So the total amount contributed to the AMS by Blue
Chip (i.e., its net profit) for 1990-91 was $106,636,
more than three times the rent paid by
In 1996-97 (the last complete fiscal year), the Blue
Chip surplus was $71,284, to which should be added
the following amounts:
Support Allocation: $107,827
Storeroom Allocation 23,485
Total $131,312
The support allocations are charged to all our
operations. They subsidize the overhead costs for
the AMS Student Services and the AMS Clubs and
So the total amount of money contributed by Blue
Chip (its net profit) for 1996-97 was $202,596.
Blue Chip is an AMS created business, different from
the US company with the same name; we do not
pay a franchise fee, and never have.
We think so. Aside from double the number of jobs
for students, aside from the higher wages, 'Student
Owned and Operated' means all the proceeds ofthe
operation go back towards funding our student run
services. From programs like AMS Safewalk or
JobLink to initiatives such as club special project
grants, the success of these programs was made
possible because the AMS business provide the
financial resources needed to back student initiatives.
In taking on a project such as this, careful planning
is called for. This has been, and is continuing to be
done. With our extensive business plan and the
retail expertise of our senior management staff, we
project the AMS operated retail store will be a
successful venture. Any physical changes to the
store would charged against the store's revenues,
not a single dollar would be diverted from student
operations nor from student facilities renovation
The Blue Chip experience demonstrates the AMS's
ability to undertake this type of project with a high
expectation for success. 11 UlgKUtt
! !
| FEBRUAKY5, 1998 • VOLUME 79 ISSUE 32     \
Special Issue Coordinator        ;
l Pride UBC I
* i
l Editorial Board
Coordinating Editor
Joe Clark
Sarah Galashan and Chris Nuttall-Smith
Richelle Rae
Wolf Depner
Jamie Woods
Richard Lam
Federico Barahona
The Ubyssey is the official student newspaper of the University of British Columbia. It
is published every Tuesday and Friday by
The Ubyssey Publications Society.
We are an autonomous, democratically run
student organisation, and all students are
encouraged to participate.
Editorials are chosen and written by the
Ubyssey staff. They are the expressed opinion of the staff, and do not necessarily
reflect the views of The Ubyssey
Publications Society or the University of
British Columbia.
The Ubyssey is a founding member of
Canadian University Press (CUP) and firmly
adheres to CUP'S guiding principles.
All editorial content appearing in The
Ubyssey is the property of The Ubyssey
Publications Society. Stories, opinions, photographs and artwork contained herein
cannot be reproduced without the
expressed, written permission of The
Ubyssey Publications Sdciety.T
Letters to the editor must be under
300 words. Please include your phone
number, student number and signature
(not for publication) as well as your year
and faculty with all submissions. ID will be
checked when submissions are dropped off
at the editorial office of The Ubyssey, otherwise verification will be done by phone.
"Perspectives" are opinion pieces over 300
words but under 750 words and are run
according to space.
"Freestyles" are opinion pieces written by
Ubyssey staff members. Priority will be given
to letters and perspectives over freestyles
unless the latter is time senstitive. Opinion
pieces will not be run until the identity of the
writer has been verified.
Editorial Office
Room 241K, Student Union Building.
6138 Student Union Boulevard,
Vancouver, BC V6T 1Z1
tel: (604) 822-2301 fax: (604) 822-9279
Business Office
Room 245, Student Union Building
advertising: (604) 822-1654
business office: (604) 822-6681
Business Manager
Fernie Pereira
Ad Sales
Stephanie Keane
Ad Design
Afshin Mehin
It was eafty one chilly Saturday morniiig and Bruce
Arthur wt$nt to grab his wool sweater from me closet
Iteacliing for the handle he heard some muffled voices.
Immeadiatly he called Richard Lam and Joe dark for
back up. llie three cautiously open the closet door and
were astonished with what befell them. Pressed up on
the other side were John Zaozimey, Ed Yeung and Erin
Kaiser. Tlie three came inmhling from the closet revealing more members of their closet club. Hidden behind
the dresses and slacks were Anna Nohile. Ryker, and Jo
-Rugby Grrrl' McFetridge. Doug Sanders and Anthony
Schrag croutched between sweaters on the side shelves.
Suddenly ayell came from behind the enormous stack
of shoes. Melindajette and Sam DeGrootwere pinching
each other's arms. Amar called down from the ahc He
wantedjulius Elefaute to send up a sweater—he too was
getting cold. Dave Bremner and Stephanie Phillips telephoned to say they would be arriving late to the closet
club and Alan Woo and Craig Bavis got to the closet just
minutes later. Party people Jamie Woods, Federico
Barahona and Richelle Rae were Hanring up a storm in
amungst the dresses, while Chris Niime&nith and Wolf
Depner got drunk with the jeans. James Rowan showed
up just in time for the party games and for a fiightening
randition of I'li&iiy's / Think We're Alone Now performed by Sarah Galashan.
the uB-Y-saL-wiJLfJLMNPwfcfr
Canada Pest Publkation Sales Agreement Number 0732141
The continuing struggle...
It was a bit of a struggle to get this special
issue put together, yet somehow we managed.
At first, no one wanted to take on the responsibility of coordinating an entire issue of the
Ubyssey. But in the end, we wound up with a
number of willing and helpful participants,
and more copy than there was room for. Still,
it took some struggle
Ironically, "struggle" began to emerge as a
common thread among the articles being
turned in. Not only is the Queer community
still struggling as a whole to fight for respect
and acceptance from society, despite expansive progress in re   nt years, but other con
flicts are surfacing from within.
We are hoping that you will gain some
insight into the hardships we, as a community and as people, must deal with. The Surrey
School Board book ban (which is old news) is
one battle we are still fighting. There are also
laws that are begging to be defined, while history pleads to be properly rewritten. Even
here at UBC, English professor Mec Globe is
involved in an attempt to introduce a minor
program in Lesbian and Gay studies.
A few articles are also devoted to shining
the spotlight on to those who are marginalized
within the queer communiry, such as minori
ty ethnic groups and Bisexuals. Unfortunately,
the only Transgendered content included is a
minute book review, which does not cover
nearly enough ground. This just goes to show
how even the people who worked and helped
out on this issue struggled to be inclusive and
sensitive to all aspects ofthe Queer community-
However, we managed to pull it all together and present to you this testament of our
efforts and accomplishments. Looking back
over the past few weeks, we are all able to
smile at what we've overcome in order to produce this year's Queer issue of the Ubyssey. ♦.
...to reconcile rights and identity
by Craig Bavis
Social achievement for Gays, Lesbians, and
Bisexuals in the 90's has come to be measured by appellate court judgments pronouncing what rights a small group of socially
advantaged, conversative intellectuals have
most recently decided society is ready to
grant While Queer theory and activism centre around the struggle for rights, the concept
of identity is largely ignored, ultimately hindering the process that strives to recognize
The two most important words in queer
theory are rights and identity: identity defines
who one is while rights determine how one
will be recognized.
Identity is formed both externally and
internally. A group, such as homosexuals, may
be externally constructed when members of
society decide to attach special significance to
certain characteristics such as preferred gender of sexual partner. This social construction
artificially divides society into two groups,
homosexual and heterosexual. .As a response
to this division, a group may formulate their
identity by defining themselves in a way in
which is more inclusive and positive, such as
Bisexual, Transgendered, or Queer.
Rights define how individuals, groups, and
humanity is treated and recognized by the rest
of society. What specific rights are sought, or
ought to be sought, are intensely debated, but
most are often framed as a right not to be discriminated against on the basis of gender of
sexual partner preference in regards to a particular act or condition such as employment,
marriage, or spousal benefits.
The primary mechanism for achieving
these rights in Canada has become the judiciary, due to the creation of the Canadian
Charter of Rights and Freedoms in 1982.
Ironically, while section 15(1) ofthe Charter
prohibits discrimination based on race,
national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, sex,
age, or mental or physical disability, it does
not specifically protect against discrimination
on the basis of sexual orientation. Sexual orientation had to be "read into" the Charter by
the courts, informed by identity discourse
from the queer community.
Most Queer theorists have postulated that
sexual orientation is essentialist — that it is
not determined by individual choice but by
genetics or nature. This belief, central to forming Queer identity, has been accepted by the
Supreme Court of Canada which has found
that "whether or not sexual orientation is
based on biological or physiological factors,
which may be a matter of some controversy, it
is a deeply personal characteristic that is
either unchangeable or changeable only at
unacceptable personal costs, and so falls within the ambit of s. 15 protection." per Justice La
Forest in Egan v. Canada.
But while the courts have found that to discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation is
violation of rights, it can often be a justified
under section 1 of the Charter of Rights and
Freedoms which guarantees rights "only to
such reasonable limits as can be demonstrably justified in a free and democratic society."
TJie courts may agree that a failure to give
spousal benefits to same sex couples.violates
rights, but then find that this violation is justified for policy reasons such as the financial
cost to society.
Identity has formed the basis for rights to
be asserted in the courts, a process which
seems to have been adopted as the primary
form of activism in Canada both because of its
convenience, since it allows most members of
the group affected to relax while a few individuals fight the battle for rights on their
behalf, and because of the legitmacy of the
judiciary in Canada. The current lack of significant social discourse on identity due to the
preoccupation with rights that litigatous
activisim encourages may end up harming
the process.
Ultimately, the effectiveness of the
Canadian courts in granting rights will
depend on how the term demonstrably justified is defined by the courts. Just as Queer theory contributed to defining an element of
identity, essentialism, that was accepted by
the courts, it can play a role in further building consensus to refine the concept of identi-
When the Queer community, instead of a
few academics and intervenors in the courts,
can truly define and agree on what it is to be
queer and what it means in the context of society as a whole, the courts will be forced to
, reconsider what is demonstrably justified
under section 1 of the Charter. When identity
is defined to mean more than just the inability to chose sexual orientation, and placed in
wider social context what is acceptable in a
free and democratic society will be challenged
and removed as a barrier. We cannot sit idly
by and hope for rights to be eventually granted—we must compel the court through communicating the nature and the importance of
identity through both argument and action.
Rights can only exist in the context of identity.* pride
Burger places have food waiting.
We're waiting
to make it
At Subway, your sandwich
doesn't sit around and
wait for you. You watch
while we make it just
the way you want it.
Come and taste the
freshness for voursclf.
■^ ,/-
• 1 ikr^ nCMW^t* ■ - ■**'«"» "    "*'
Buy any sandwich (Deli style or Footlong) and a medium drink and get a second sandwich of
equal or lesser value for 990 ( Expires February 13/98 ). Downstairs in Village, 5728
University Blvd. 221-7823. Open Wed, Fri, Sat 10-2 am and Mon, Tues, Thurs, Sun 10-12 am.
UBC Opera Ensemble
or the cost of $10 the
UBC opera ensemble will
perform a singing telegram
for your loved ones, friends,
collegues, teachers etc. anywhere on campus, including residences and classes
(but you must get the permission of the instructor). They will be performed between 9:30 am and
7:30 pm on Feb.13. Forms must be received at the
Music Building by Feb 10 at 4:30pm (at the front
office). You should attach any message to the form
that you wish to be given to the recipient of the
April 1,2,3,4,5 UK.'  Opera laisemble Presents
W.A. Mo/.an's " La linta (.iardinicra"
al lhe Chan Centre
I Name_
I Address.
I Recipients Name.
Room #	
I Instructors Name (if needed).
j Instructors Signature	
I Comments	
1 1
Nothing minor about Lesbian and Gay Studies
Erin Kaiser
A minor in Lesbian and Gay
Studies would be major for UBC
and may be possible in coming
Since the late 1960's, Lesbian,
Gay, Bisexual, Transgendered,
and Queer Studies have blossomed into an explosive and
innovative field of research. In
1997 more than 1000 academic
books were published on the subject, and dozens of academic journals have recently been established. .And for the past few years
a small group of UBC professors
have been working to create a
UBC Arts minor program in
Lesbian and Gay Studies.
'Perhaps the best argument
for [this] programme is that there
is a huge gay and lesbian community in the Lower Mainland, and
that a provincial institution
should be concerned that important academic disciplines are covered in their offerings. In short, at
a certain point it becomes an
equity issue," said aAlec Globe, a
UBC English professor who teaches a course in Gay and Lesbian
drama. Globe is one of the key
individuals vying for the programme's formation.
The programme is considered
controversial and its worth will
receive debate at many different
levels of aclministration right up
to the provincial government.
Financial and political considerations will be key to the success or
failure of the proposal.
But Ed Yeung, academic coordinator of the a-Xrts Undergraduate
Society, said he believes in the
program's importance.
"It allows for a more focussed
and open approach to Lesbian
and Gay studies, rather than the
current situation of semi-hidden
courses scattered across various
departments. It would also show
that the University officially
recognises and endorses queer
studies as an academic discipline."
A department in Lesbian and
DR ALEC GLOBE proposing Gay and Lesbian studies programme at UBC
implications everywhere in the
faculty of Arts."
But planning committees are
working to ensure the proposed
programme would incur minimal
costs. The programme would 'piggyback' off existing resources in
the   university  and  bear   few
over the inclusiveness of a programme called Lesbian and Gay
Studies. It isn't yet clear if such a
programme would offer an
inquiry into Bisexual or
Transgendered studies and many
students said they were doubtful
the programme would be success-
expenses. A website would provide students with all course
information, negating the need
for excessive paper costs. .As well,
students could pick from existing
courses that already include
Lesbian and Gay studies in their
curriculum. The idea is similar to
"Perhaps the best argument for [this]
program is that there is a huge gay
and lesbian community in the lower
Mainland, and that a provincial
institution should be concerned that
important academic disciplines are
covered in their offerings."
Gay Studies would make it easier
for the Gay community to address
concerns about the naturalisation
of Gay issues in other departments. .As well the department
would be the first of its kind in
Canada making UBC a leader in
the field.
Globe said finances will be an
important factor in estabhshing
the programme. "The Dean is
very concerned about financial
Academic Coordinator
arts undergraduate society
ful in terms of enrollment.
Anxiety, they said, stemmed
from fear of what parents and
friends would think or say if they
knew they were enrolled in the
Lesbian and Gay studies minor
programme. As well, some suggested that it might be harder to
gain employment if their degree
bore the words, Lesbian and Gay
But programmes in the United
States provide examples of success in establishing similar
Lesbian and Gay programmes.
Globe said the most rewarding
thing about teaching a course in
Gay and Lesbian Studies, beyond
the interesting course materials
and the service to the gay community, is that it moves straight students to a point-beyond tolerance.
"The moment of triumph is not
just when gays, lesbians, bisexuals, and transgender[ed] students
say, 'Well finally I have a place at
this institution where I can speak
and that's okay,' but when a
straight student comes up at the
end of an exercise and says, 'Well,
I feel perfectly heterosexual, but I
understand more now then I did
before what it is that others have
to deal with in their lives," said
Globe. ♦
studies   pro
UBC's   Canadian
The only new course, Lesbian
and Gay studies 300, would consist of a series of lectures from
professors of different faculties
and departments. Lesbian and
Gay Studies would provide UBC
students with a multidisciplinary
education in the issues surrounding Lesbian and Gay issues.
Concerns  have  been raised A UBYSSEY SPECIAL
20 minute HIV home kits raise questions
 by Alan Woo & Julius Elefante
A new HIV test that yields results in twenty minutes may
soon be lining local drugstore shelves.
Home HIV test kits are currently being reviewed to
assess their accuracy versus the current blood testing
method, which takes approximately two weeks to produce a
Steve Martindale, coordinator ofthe Vanguard Project (a
study of the conversion rates of HIV statuses of men who
have sex with men in the Lower Mainland), states, "If it
proves to be accurate, and is approved for use [in
Canada]...then you would have your results in twenty minutes."
So how does the new test work?
"There's a pen with a needle in it, which pricks your finger. It's supposed to be so fast that you don't even feel it
You then blot it on to this paper which acts like a litmus test
and changes colour depending on whether it's reactive or
not for HIV antibodies," Martindale explains.
Steven Smith, AIDS Vancouver Helpline coordinator
says the test kit would be more appealing to the public.
"[Home kits] are more anonymous and reach more people
who may be reluctant to get tested."
However, both Martindale and Smith point out that this
new,niethod may come with repercussions.
"(The test requires] a fluency of knowledge with the
result aspect of the test [and there is] the potential for misunderstanding what the results mean," Smith says.
A positive HIV result does not necessarily mean that one
already has AIDS, and this may lead to confusion for some.
"There are concerns about people doing something rash,
like harming or killing themselves," Martindale says. "If
people test positive at home, do they have the information
and support they need?"
from US store shelves last year.
Martindale also worries about maintaining statistics to track HIV and iMDS.
"If everyone tested at home, we would
have no idea what's happening with the
epidemic because results would not be
recorded," he says. "I don't support HIV being
reported by name but I do think it is important
we know numbers in terms of how many people
are infected, and who (ie women, gay men,
This information would also affect funding
for aMDS education and anti-prevention efforts
which is based mainly on statistics.
Chris Bauchner, agency coordinator for
YouthCo, suggests limiHug the availability ofthe
home test to clinics where there is more control
over data and where professional counseling
can be accessed.
The test is also raising some ethical concerns. Martindale foresees the possible abuse of
such fast testing. From job interviews to crossing the border, he says people who are HIV positive may get turned away by immigration and
"The States already has an
immigration law against
allowing people with HIV into
the country. These tests leave
room for discrimination and
screening people out," he
says. "What road are we going
down with this move towards
faster test results?"
Similar over-the-counter
HIV tests, manufactured by
Johnson and Johnson under
the name "Confide," were
pulled from US store shelves
last year when there were
problems with accuracy. ♦
Feb 9-11
► Fine Art
Fantasy <
S.U.B.-1st Floor
Wildlife <
last  day
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ati Y 6, 1998
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Controversial bills decide fate of same-sex marriage
..' -i Tyic^y, Ross :~ ■
Review of
Student Servi
(including the Office~of the Registrar)
A committee chaired by Moura Quayle, Dean of the Faculty
of Agricultural Sciences has been established to conduct a
review of Student Services. Student Services comprises the
following units:
Awards and Financial Aid
Disability Resource Centre
International Student Services
Records and Registration
Scheduling and Administration
Secretariat and Publications
Student Health Services
Student Resources Centre
Student Systems
Undergraduate Admissions
Women Students' Office
The Committee's mandate includes, but is not limited to the
• To examine the operation of the 11 units and their role in
support of the University's mission
• To comment on the accountability and the overall effectiveness of the Department's staff, and its organizational
• To identify the Department's strengths and also any
opportunities which the committee perceives for improving its programs, its relations with internal and external
organizations and for better utilization of the University's
The Committee will welcome written submissions from individuals or groups. Submissions should be received no later
than Feb. 28,1998 and should be addressed to:
Byron Hender
Secretary, Student Services Review Comrnittee
123-6328 Memorial Rd.
Vancouver B.C. V6T 1Z2
Fax: 822-8194
E-mail: hender@unixg.ubc.ca
by Angela IPacienza
TORONTO (CUP)—Two federal politicians are vying
to present their private member's bills regarding
same-sex marriage.
Scarborough Liberal MP Tom Wappell feels that
same-sex marriages should not be allowed, proposing to establish a legal definition of marriage
through his Defense of the Marriage Act bill.
, "(The bill) is a confirmation in Canadian law that
the only people who can marry, and who have the
capacity to marry each other, are people ofthe opposite sex who are otherwise single,' Wappell said.
However, Bloc Quebecois MP Real Menard plans
to table his own private member bill asking to
change the definition of marriage, allowing for
same-sex unions. He says Wappell's views are intolerant.
"I will try to build a coalition with all the member
(who have an open mind and
have an interest for this issue and
to[help me] make pressure inside
the Liberal party caucus on the
government side," said Menard.
Currently, same-sex marriages
are not recognised as legal
unions in Canada, but the
Canadian Charter of Rights and
Freedoms restricts discrimina-
tion on sexual orientation since a
Supreme Court ruling in 1995.
Still, critics feel this isn't
"It's really important to always
bear in mmd the legitimising
impact of law and when law said
that something is right or wrong,
automatically that has a great
deal of social importance," said
University of Victoria law professor Donald
Casswell, author of Lesbians, Gay Men, and
Canadian Law, a comprehensive book on the treatment of Lesbians and Gay men by Canadian law,
said the law is profoundly heterosexisL He pointed
to immigration laws as a possible step for gay rights
"If the law said, 'Sorry Lesbian, you can't bring
your British Lesbian partner into the country,' that
says Lesbians don't count as much as straight people," Casswell said.
Wappell's critics call his bill a copycat version of
the United States' Defense of Marriage (DOMA) bill.
DOMA allows American states to ignore the constitutional provision ensuring states recognize each
other's laws when dealing with same-sex marriage.
York University law professor Bruce Ryder says
DOMA is a knee-jerk reaction to a recent Hawaiian
case where legislators implemented a 'reciprocal
beneficiaries' law. The law allows same-sex couples
to have over 50 spousal rights, including health
care decisions and properly inheritance without a
"(Hawaii's law) raises the possibility that any
same-sex couple who wants to get married in the
US, just has to zip over to Hawaii," Ryder said. He
notes politicians like Wappell fear this possibility
and are working to prevent it
Under DOMA, couples traveling to Hawaii to
"If somebody
does not do
something about
trying to defend
the established
norm, then it wiil
no longer be fhe
marry are not legally recognized jo their home state.
Wappell believes he has support of Liberal colleagues.
"Oh, I don't think there would be too much trou
ble if there was a free vote," said Wappell. 'None
whatsoever, in fact
"What led to this is that there is a continuing challenge in the courts of our country, and indeed in the
courts of many countries, to the established norm,"
he said. "If somebody does not do something about
■Tying to defend the established norm, then it will no
longer be the established norm."
Ryder said Wappell anticipates the possibility the
federal government might decide to change the definition of marriage to permit same-sex unions in the
'It's obviously a reactionary bill designed to forestall the progress of equality rights," Ryder said,
adding how established norms are frequently changing.
Ryder feels that government response won't provoke any interesting kind of debate in reaction to
Wappell's bill. He suggests parliament might
respond by saying the bill isn't necessary, since little
social change is currently
being entertained.
'I don't tiiink (the government) actively want to block
the progress. They've just displayed a political cowardice
and would rather see the
courts advance the issue,'
Ryder said.
However, Menard's bill
allowing same-sex couples the
same access to services and
benefits as opposite-sex marriages received much debate
in 1995. Menard's new bill
likely receive the same attention this time. But Wappell
fears the ramifications of not
pursuing his bill. "If same-sex
people can get married, why
not a brother and sister? Why not two brothers? Why
not a grandmother and a nephew?" asked Wappell.
"We have laws against consanguinity. Why? Not
all of them are against the criminal code. Why?
Because society doesn't think that certain unions
should be allowed for the greater societal good,
whatever that may be from time to time,' Wappell
In past years, Canadian courts ruled on controversial issues such as abortion and fetal rights without parliament having to publically debate the subject Once judged, these contested issues become
precedent for future case judgments.
"What we're seeing in Canada is often times now,
the courts are leading the way, they're in effect
changing the common law and inviting indirectly
the legislature to catch up and amend the statute
law,' Casswell said.
Cassell believes marriage isn't a current issue for
the lesbian and gay community, saying that it has
split the community over whether to pursue the
"There's a lot of people who say that (marriage) is
so tainted as an institution, it's so sexist, it's so het-
erosexist, (they) don't even want to make that a goal
of Lesbians and Gay men,' he said.
"[But] as long as marriage is off limits to lesbians
and gay men it's just another example ofthe law saying Lesbians and Gay men are not equal,' Casswell
Denmark has allowed same-sex couples to sign a
Registered Partners document granting them a status and benefits similar to marriage since 1989. In
July 1995 over ,3,000 couples were registered.
Greenland, Iceland, Netherlands, Norway and
Sweden have followed with similar legislation.**
Liberal MP
to October 1995, Prime Minister Gtitifakwas added about same-sercouples by a Manitoba high school student
Here is how the PM responded: .    - "•;    ,
Q from student "Prime Minister, do ybu think that homosepat couples should have the same rights as heterosexual copies. If not, why not and tf sq> what do you intend -fit ijp to advance these rights?
ftm% Minister Chretien: "That's not an easy question.... Vfe passed a law not long ago to make sure that in
>the Humar Rights Act there shall be m discrimination against the people (on the basis of} sexual orientation. We
' passed {th.:t law]. Every government had tried, for many years> and I am very proud that my govemrnent managed
• to'do it ' •   '•
j     When you talk about marriage contracts between homosexual couples, I'm not personally very comfortabie with
', that because I don't know how that works in a society, and secomfly, marriage is not federal responsibility, rfs a
j contract between two individuals according a the Canadian tradition of different sexes sharing a family life together. And you know, the marriage question is not our responsibility."-* A UBYSSEY SPECIAL ISS!
Slim options for battered men
 by Nancy K. Modrcin
TORONTO (CUP)—Imagine this scenario. Your lover is constantly abusing you, and you've finally decided to seek help.
Except you're not a woman, you're a gay male, and the
options are less than slim.
For years, support groups, shelters and emergency hot
lines have been available to battered women. But an
increase in reported incidents of violence in male same-sex
relationships have pressured many organisations to'
expand services for Gay needs.
Steven Easton, founder of The Easton Alliance for the
Prevention of Family Violence in Toronto said his agency
survived primarily through the community's goodwill and
a dedicated staff. Established in March 1993, The Easton
Alliance addresses the special needs of male victims of
domestic abuse in both heterosexual and homosexual communities.
"Primarily we deal with domestic violence in heterosexual relationships, and many of the support services arr
directed in that focus," Easton said. "But that doesn't mean
that we don't assist men who come out of abusive homosexual relationships," he added.
Still, he remarked on the differing needs of battered gay
men from other groups of victims. "We've been able to provide them with support, offer them some resources and
help them in their recovery process," he said.
ffiiG3©^ fyiniefcg
As experienced by many Ontario based social service agencies, The Easton Alliance faces a constant battle over lack of
funds. Moreover, male agencies suffer from low priority for
government subsidisation.
"The money is allocated through one central agency,
which is The Ontario Women's Directorate," Easton
explained. "Just in the name itself you can sort of see a conflict that we would run into."
Emphasising the hardships of limited funding, Easton
feels that there is a great lack of public shelters for gay men.
"Although we are the only agency in Canada that I'm aware
of that does the kind of work that we do, we are also probably one ofthe poorest."
Victim Assistance Program coordinator Karen Baldwin
explains that most Metro shelters welcome men, but none
deal exclusively with abused gay males.
"As far as I know there's nothing in North America,"
she said. "If they're under the age of 25, they might be
able to go to one of the youth shelters, but for men over
Earlyn   , is
the best
[Victims! have to report it,
at least to a>*v-:?r : -    .7
.Thatis paramount to entering the
criminal "Jnj "^; :T.v system
2 5, the only sort of shelters are hostels. Neither the youth
shelters nor the hostels are guaranteed to be safe for a gay
Sympathising with their dilemma, Baldwin encourages
gay male victims to call the Gay and Lesbian Bashing
Reporting and Information Line when they need help. The
service provides information, referrals, resources, assistance with police reporting and medical treatment assistance.
Celebrating their 25th anniversary next year, the
Toronto Rape Crisis Centre internal manager, counselor
and line support staff Deb Parent says they have also
received calls from battered gay men, but notes the staff
and clientele are predominady female.
"Most of our counseling right now, if not all of our counseling, is with women. That is our priority, to meet the
demands of women, mcluding lesbians," Parent said.
Although male victims do not receive one on one counseling. Parent says gay male callers get the same treatment
as abused lesbians and heterosexual women. But if the
abuse continues, and the line fails to repair a violent relationship, help is hard to find.
"I don't know that there exists a shelter for battered
men," she said. "At least in heterosexual terms, they tend to
be the exception rather than the rule."
tec3 ienfFcglE
"Lesbians have options," said Laurie Chesley, social worker
and team leader of the David Kelley program dealing with
Lesbians and Gays at Family Services in Toronto. "The
same resources are not available to Gay men."
Like Baldwin, Chesley knows of Metro shelters established for young men, but none exclusively for Gay men. "In
many cases, these existing shelters are filled with heterosexual men, and are not an option for Gay men," she said.
But many organisations are trying to offer more. .As
many groups open their doors and telephone lines, they
attract more support from the police. For Detective Dino
Doria ofthe Toronto Police Hate Crimes Unit, reporting the
incident is the first step to resolve harmful disputes.
"Early intervention is the best prevention," he said.
"(Victims) have to report it, at least to a communiry agency.
That is paramount to entering the criminal justice system."
although Easton hopes social service programs will find
the means to further develop programs and shelters for
abused men, he plans to continue to lend a helping hand
through raising funds.
"People tend to get caught up in their ideologies and less
in the humanity ofthe situation,* he says.**
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to keep The
Thunderbird Shop
of low Prices
nf Student Jobs
For 25 Years
Feb. 6,9 & 10
2:00 PM
12:30 PM ' FEBRUARY 6, 1998
Texts banned in
by Sam de Groot
Last spring a teacher in Surrey asked for
school board approval for the classroom use
of three books: Asha's Mums, Belinda's
Bouquet, and One Dad, Two Dads, Brown
Dad, Blue Dads.
All three books are children's books that
depict same-sex families. In Belinda's
Bouquet, the reference to Belinda's other
mom is so fleeting, it's doubtful that any
seven year old would clue in to the full implication ofthe word "other."
Yet a majority of the trustees voted to ban
the books because they portrayed homosexuality.
School boards are supposed to follow a
standard procedure for evaluating books in
order to ensure that all books are treated
equally, but in this case no procedure was followed. The only discernible criteria that the
board used for evaluating these three books
was sexuality—hetero is good, homo is not
Numerous presentations were made in
favour ofthe books, and the teacher who first
asked for their approval presented a petition
in support of the books signed by 18 of the
20 parents of the children in his class. No
presentations were made that advocated
banning the books.
Kari Simpson, the head of the Citizen's
Research Institute which states
that "the gay lifestyle is not one
which is normal, acceptable, or
must be tolerated," then held a
rally downtown in support of
the school board. A large
counter-demonstration arrived
and prevented Ms Simpson
from speaking.
I myself attended the rally
and had some useful discussions with parents who were in
favour of the book ban.
Although many people were
there to shout and wave banners, many people formed into
little discussion groups that
were polite and informative. Robert
Pickering, the chair ofthe school board at the
time ofthe book ban, was discovered to be a
director of the Citizen's Research Institute
and he resigned as a result ofthe publicity.
At the beginning of August, two teachers,
a parent, an author, and a student filed a
court case that claimed the Surrey School
Board violated their rights by banning the
books. The petitioners want the court to overturn the ban and prevent the board from dis-
crimmating against them. Many people,
including some famous authors, have written affidavits in support of the books. The
■■'■■•■■-■<:'■■'.';■!*!'•* -mr: ■
THE HEP GIRLS Adrian Telford, Jackie Ward, and Diane Willcott. sam de groot photo
case has not yet been heard, and it will probably be some time before it is resolved. Fund
raising is now a primary activity due to litigation expenses.
One ofthe petitioners in the court case is
Diane Willcott, a Surrey parent, who with two
other Surrey parents, Adrian Telford and
Jackie Ward, formed Heterosexuals Exposing
Paranoia (HEP). All three parents have or
recently had children in Surrey schools, and
they are all involved in their local parent
advisory committees (PAC's) and in the district parent advisory comrnittee (DPAC).
Willcott and Ward sit on the DPAC executive. Before the book banning brouhaha, they
had no experience dealing with homosexual
issues and they were, as they now admit,
ignorant about many of those issues.
Originally, one parent heard that there was a
plan by homosexual activists to teach
sodomy in the schools.
Concerned, she investigated and found
out nothing of the sort Willcott knew the
Surrey teacher who wanted to use the books,
so she read them, found them harmless, and
then read them to her kids. The parents then
got seriously involved in the fight for the
books and the court case, and Willcott was
made a parade marshal at last year's Pride
Day Parade in honour of her efforts.*
kd langin drag,
but no longer
that amazing
Women in View highlights exciting new talent
kd lang
by Jo McFetridge
I must be the only individual on earth that doesn't like
this CD. After reading countless raving reviews of
Lang's newest album, titled Drag, I must admit I expected a little more from the super-famous queer diva. As
usual, Lang's voice is pure and true, each note flawless
and strong, yet somehow someftung is lacking in her
latest collection of tunes.
Dragis what is known as a "theme" record, as in, the
title and contents all follow a common thread, in this
case one of cigarettes and smoking. At least, that was
the artist's intent Frankly, some of the songs are only
vaguely related to this theme, which takes away from
the overall effect. It is obvious that more resources went
into the cover and inset photography than in research
for the songs, which is a shame. Although lang looks
very fetching "in drag', dressed in men's pinstripe suits
(a clever play on the CD title) the contents ofthe record
should be more important than the cover—a point
which apparently eluded her producers.
After waiting for two years for this new CD, I was
hoping for more unique kd lang material. Instead, Drag
is a collection of Lang singing nine old classics, ranging
from "The Air that I Breathe" by the Hollies, to Steve
Miller's infanious "joker". Only one new song is featured on the CD, "Hain't it Funny?" which was not even
written by lang herself, but by Jane Sibbery (ack!). I also
find it incessantly irritating that most of the ten songs
on this new album sound remarkably similar. One
would think that an experienced, extremely talented
performer such as lang could find a more varied sample of songs from such a broad genre, especially since
she does have a reputation for being a very versatile
Call me crazy—I actually liked "AH You Can Eat,"
lang's previous album. At least it was original, lang's
newest offering is definitely a collectible, but don't
expect too much. Besides, now that I've set you up for
disappointment, you'll probably like it. Personally, I've
shelved this new album under "elevator music" and
have only unearthed it when I needed a nice, droning,
background-type sound to lull me to sleep.♦
by Anna Nobile
Women in View, Canada's only multi-disciplinary festival for
women in lhe performing arts, celebrates its 10th anniversary this year. The festival's purpose is to enhance, support,
and promote Canadian women artists and includes a commitment to increase the visibility of all women, regardless of
race, culture, sexual orientation or physical ability. This year's
festival features several works by queer women.
Leading off the festival is a full length play, Swollen
Tongues, written entirely in verse by local playwright
Katherine Oliver. Oliver, who won Theatre BC's National
Playwrighting Competition in 199 7, claims, "I never set out to
write the play [in verse]; it just sort of happened."
Swollen Tongueshas been billed as a "claiming romantic
fable," and tells the story of a brother and sister vying for the
love of the same woman, resulting in cross-dressing and
comic laughs.
There are also two one-woman shows: Terrie HamazaM
returns to stage with Furusato. Seen at last year's Fringe
Festival, the play uses poetry, song and drama in the telling of
a difficult relationship between a woman and her lesbian
daughter. The second show is by Jan Derbyshire, who rocked
last year's Women in View festival with The Opposite of
Everything is True. Derbyshire returns this year with the
sequel The Modern Woman's Guide to Female
Impersonation. Derbyshire's brand of humour is fast paced,
witty, intelligent and funny. Both shows are not to be missed.
Other offerings by queer women include the reading of
Sheila James' play, A Canadian Monsoon. Persimmon
Blackbridge and Karen X. Tulchinsky round out the literary
portion of queer offerings with readings of their most recent
works. Tulcnhinsky launches her new novel, Love Ruins
Everything Febuary 13th at lhe Lotus Club at 8 PM.
LAARA SADIQ stars in Swollen Tongues, as part of Women
in View visual arts festival.
This year's "Networking Sessions" includes talks with
Savannah Walling, Artistic Director of Vancouver Moving
Theatre, and Glynis Leyshon, Artistic director of the
Vancouver Playhouse. Networking Sessions are free and an
excellent opportunity to learn valuable theatre inforrnation
and meet professionals in the business.*?-1
Transgender Warriors
by Leslie Feinberg
(Beacon Press. 1996)
by Chris Keviahan
Transgender Warriors, by Leslie Feinberg,
offers a glirninpse into the lives of
Transgendered people throughout history
and around the world.Feinberg illustrates
tlie persecution that is suffered by
Transgendered people, and being one
her/liirnself, Feinberg knows firsthand of
the misery inflicted on those who do not
conform to society's norms. Transgender
Warriors also features interviews with
Transgendered people who candidly and
bravely tell their stories. This book is gripping from beginning to end with lavish
illustrations throughout and is a must for
anyone who wishes to have a better understanding of the Transgender
Asha's Mums
by Rosalind Efwim and Micheie Paulse
by Aian Woo
Rosamund Elwin and Micheie Paulse's
book, Asha's Mums, is no big whoop. It
isn't even that good. Yet, the Surrey
School Board seemed to think it was hot
enough to ban.
The story itself is simple and sweet
Asha, an elementary school girl, needs to
get a permi ssion slip filled out by both her
parents, who turn out to be two women.
This then leads to the opening of new
worlds and ideas for kids to discuss.
Although the story does provide a
healthy debate and an insight into non-
nuclear families, the illustrations that
accompany it leave much to be desired.
Dawn Lee's sketchy style may be culturally inclusive, with all types of ethnicities
shown, but as far as aesthetics, the drawings are just not that fabulous.
Otherwise, Asha's Mums is an enlightening book with a decently good plot*!*
by Stephanie Phillips
Stephanie Phillips is s first year science student
Prayers for Bob provides a
permanent immunity to homophobia
Prayers for Bobby
by Leroy Aarons
(HarperSanFrancisco 1995)
by Sam de Groot
The truths embodied in Prayers for
Bobby are so basic, so fundamental,
and so self-evident that it surely would
provide a permanent immunity to the
virus of homophobia to everyone who
reads it. It is the story of Mary Griffith
and her gay son Bobby, and it has been
known to induce tears before page ten.
In 1983, at the age of twenty, Bobby
Griffith killed himself by jumping off a
freeway overpass. His diaries record
his passage from a sunny, imaginative
child to a confused and tormented
After Bobby's suicide, Mary Griffith
could not understand why God did not
cure her son. But the weight of the
tragedy impelled her to think maybe
God did not cure her son because he
was not sick.
Mary Griffith has since become an
active member of PFLAG (Parents,
Family, and Friends of Lesbians and
Gays) and an advocate for gay youth. And it
is her story of transformation that tells us
the most about truth, love, and life.*!*
The controversy behind
Shakepeare's identity rekindles
Alias Shakespeare
Joseph Sobran
(Simon and Schuster)
by Sam de Groot
What's In A Name? Not Much It Seems.
In his book AZias Shakespeare Joseph
Sobran continues fhe ongoing debate about
who was fhe author of "Shakespeare." My
Norton Anthology did not display any doubt in
its little blurb about William Shakespeare, but
debate has raged about authorship, and many
past writers have expressed doubts that
William Shakespeare actually wrote any ofthe
stuff with his name on it. Francis Bacon,
Christopher Marlowe, and Edward de Vere
the Earl of Oxford as well as a bunch of other
not-so-probable candidates have all been
rumored to be the real author.
It should be welcome news for those graduate students desperately grasping for original theses everything that can be said has not
been—the truth is still out there. One would
think that ground so oft plowed for four hundred years would be thoroughly depleted, but
it will again bear fresh fruit when new ideas
take root*
Greek love translates well
The complete poems of cavafy
Translated by Rae Dalven
(Harcourt Brace)
by Ryker
Some might know Constanine Cavafy for
his   poem   "Ithaca,"
recited at the funeral
of Jackie Onassis. To
others   he   was   the
writer of homosexual
lyric love poems (best
enjoyed      in      Rae
Dalven's translation).
His poetry appears
plain, almost to the
point of the monotone, evoking sad
and beautiful sentiments. His desire
for love and beauty, not of the soul
but of the bodies of
Greek youths, bore
verses of melancholy joy and adoration. He transforms   short-lived
affairs, furtive glances and dubious
delights to pleasures that revolve around
time, flesh and beauty.
—from "Two Young Men 23 to 24",
The Complete Poems of Cavafy.
Their handsome faces,  their marvelous youth, the sensitive love each felt
for the other were refreshed, reanimated,
fortified by the sixty-pounds of the gambling-house.
And full of joy and vigour, feeling,
and beauty they
went-not  to   the
homes   of  their
honorable   families (where
besides,        they
were  no   longer
wanted): but to a
friend's house, a
very     particular
house of depravity, and they asked
for a bedroom, and
expnsive      drinks,
and     again,    they
And when the
expensive drinks
were finished, and
since it was almost
four o'clock in the
morning, they gave themselves happily to
Translated by Rae Duiveti .Introduction by W.H. Auden
Expanded Edition
Drag king lights
up the stage
by Chris Kevlahan
Drag king performer, Mr. Bee (aka Rebecca
Shields) has been entertaining audiences for
two years. Female-to-male performers have
existed for centuries; but in North America,
drag kings saw a rise in popularity only twenty years ago. Within the last year, many lesbian
magazines have been featuring drag kings;
and the Transgendered image is also coming
back into style. I interviewed Mr. Bee about his
experience as a drag king.
At what age did you begin performing as a
drag king?
At twenty-three, though I've always been
something of a tomboy.
Are i*hfiredifEerent types of drag kings?
Yes, some drag kings attempt to pass as
men, while others just perform for the humorous aspect of it I rarely pass for a man; I perform to entertain rather than to fool the crowd.
Do you feel more at home in men's doming?
What sex do you feel like?
I feel female, but I like the interplay
between butch and femme. Gender-play
appeals to me; I like pushing boundaries in
regard to gender.
What is tibe connection between queer
women and drag?
Well, there's the history of the butch dyke
who wore men's clothing. It's a fight to reclaim
the right to be butch, and to acquire the finesse
that goes with it
Do you ever study men to improve your
I didn't at first and I was criticized for it, so
now I'm working on it.
What do you find rewarding when performing as a drag king?
Well, I've always been interested in drag;
when I was younger I got my mother to take
me to see "Les Cage aux Folles" in Toronto.
When I was at school I always performed as
men in air bands. I always liked the performance process, and the interaction with the
audience. The positive feedback made me feel
very sexy and self-confident
What is your best drag memory?
My favourite drag memory is when I performed 'I'm Too Sexy" for fhe first time at the
Lotus [a Vancouver queer women's bar]. It was
such a good show, I felt really sexy, it changed
How did your friends and family react to
your being a drag king?
My friends were very supportive. They
came out to the shows, and lent me clothes for
my performances. When I showed my mother
the cover of Xtra West with me in drag, she
cried. But after a year and a half she has come
to understand the performance aspect of it
She has listened to what I have had to say, and
as a result she's more supportive now.
What are your goals as a drag performer?
I always try to challenge myself. I'd like to
perform at more clubs. I'd also like the Lotus
to become more professional.
What do you fciok the role of drag performers is within fhe queer conununity?
To entertain people. Drag performers keep
the colour and diversity of the queer community alive. It's important for drag performers
to be accepted in the community.
What do you think is fhe importance of
drag performers and Ifransgendered people
in the roxmrnmily at large?
It's important for people to express themselves and their gender identity in any way
they want to. We want to break down stereotypes. Personally, I find breaking down stereotypes empowering.-*!*
Mr. Bee can be Ibund hitting the stage
at die Lotus nightclub every Srst
Wednesday ofthe month IDAY, FEBRUARY 6,1998
Get eve
Write us
a letter
The TJbyssey
...printing Stuff since 1918
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look for a new one in Page Friday next week.
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& Student Jobs
For 25 Years
Feb. 6,9 & 10
by Anthony Schrag
*Do you ever want to leave the West End?* I had asked
Derek ohoa.
"Now, why would I do something like that Sweetie?" he
said back, returning to his latest book—a slea2y romance
novel about two men who fell in love, and live forever in a
lMe town off fee coast of France.
Tve been living in this area for 30 years now...okay, its
been 2 5, but still, it's a long time, sweetie." Derek "Gladys"
Madsen says huskily in his cigaretteabused voice. His
g*-*-eying hair is in need of another black dye job, his moustache is neatly combed and his leather jacket conforms
well to his bony body after years. "Oh, honey, there wasn't
much when I moved here. Just a couple of Dykes and a few
brave queens. It changed fest"
"Well, apart from so much buflding going on, apartments and stores and stuff, there weren't any gay restaurants. .And only one club, the Gandi Dancer, [now
Celebrities on Davie St] It was all so hushhush then.
TCnock twice on the door before they let you in' sort of
thing. But now there are countless restaurants, and
ummm, five clubs. It's the clubs that attract the younger
ones. Not that I'm not young, mind you Just that they're
younger. Now, 30 years later there's a whole community
and support group of Fags and Dykes. Gay bookstores and
Gay shops and Gay apartment bufldings. Everything we
want is right next door. I don't have to go anywhere else."
It was true, I had lived in Vancouver's femed West End
for thrae years now and had rarely escaped its pui There
was no need. However, I felt it was time for a change. Being
in the same place for any length of time was limiting, and
I had met few people, Apart from those who were gay, and
also living in the West End. I hadn'tleft small town only to
be ghetto-ised into a place with minds as small as my rural
upbringing. I needed to break free. I needed to see fhe
world I'd left behind. I needed excitement and joie de
Yes. I was going to go to a straight club. It was time for
Gay Boy Meets Straight World.
Unrharto-ri Waters
"ButwhywouMwewanltodolhat? We wouldn't know
anyone, the music would be weird and there'll be no guys,
not gay ones anyway. Besides, youll get beaten up."
3, It's the 90's. We live in one ofthe most tolerant countries in the world. I don't think so. .And I am not going to
pick up. Just to see whats different"
"Sorry. Can't Don't want to, anyway."
Similar words spilled from the mouths of other friends.
My straight friends were too busy going to gay clubs to
come with me—my gay friends were not interested in seeing that world. I had to go it alone. Jump, solitary, into the
strange fires. But what would I wear?
I had to ask around about which club would give me the
greatest experience ofthe straight club world. I felt like I
was sixteen again, discreetly asking an older friend if he
knew of "any... you know...dubs...where people go...differ-
ent people."
All the responses I received were given with questioning glances, a raised eyebrow, a quizzical look. Still, I was
not too sure. I did not want to go to just any club. I needed
it to be specific, verging on traditional, male-female, 'Hi-
look-at-mybulgingffl.uscles' meets 'My midriff-i&exposed-
to-make^ureyoiavnotice-niy^rlsy-boobs' sort of thing.
I had heard a couple of "real men" talking at a local coffee bar, going on ad nauseum about their exploits and
adventures at a downtown bar off Granville Street A club
I knew only by reputation, and from that reputation, it had
become something of a pariah in the gay world. What
could be better, I thought I made a date with myself for
next Saturday. I reminded myself to be early, compliment
frequently, offer to pay the bill, the usual dating things.
"A what?!"
"A straight qhib."
"Why would I want to do that?" Jason was the kind of
boy who wore Tommy Hilfiger shirts, Calvin Klein jeans,
and BoysCo jackets, in that order. He was doing his hair for
another date. That maakes two this week. I had come over
to ask if he wanted to join me on my adventure.
"Look J. don't we go to enough gay clubs? We know
everyone there, and if we don't we know about them. We
know the music. Itwould be fun to change. New. Exciting.
The days dripped through my day planner, all plummeting with speed for a circled appointment on Saturday
January 17,1998,8:00 pm-Md then, in a puddle of memories of fhe week gone by, 8:00 pm was upon me. Typical
of me to be late for a date. I hadn't even showered yet!
I caughta cab to ablockbeforefhe club. The lineup was
already starting to form. I fumbled with my cab fare, at
once trying to calculate a tip and ask for change in loonies
for coat check. Do straight clubs have coat check? I wondered. Or do they throw their coats on the floor, and later
we fight for them while the women cheer for the stud of
their choice? Do 1 look odd in these clothes? Do I look fer
too "gay?" The cab driver looked at me strangely—was I
I walked briskly to the line up (are my hips swaying too
much?) and then, walked right past it I carried on around
the corner and waited a few minutes on the other side of
the building before going back. For real this time. My stom-
see 'Boy' next page A UBYSSEY SPECIaAL ISSUE:
previnus page
ach was gurgling.
The line-up itself was pretty
uneventM..the calm before the storm
I thought I listened to the two girls
behind me dressed in clothing fer too
fliin ffjr this time of year. They talked of
then* respective work places, one a dental assistant or so I gathered The
other, a waitress.
"No. You're lucky, you just deal with
people and their teeth. I getto deal with
people and their families and their
snorting and coughing, and ohmygod,
some guy came in last night with his
pants hanging so low, his...".
So far, nothing out of the ordinary,
if that word had any meaning any
more. But still, thirteen people away
was a gaudy red door and behind it
something completely foreign to me—
straight interactions and social relationships. Well, okay, not foreign, just
The moment of truth arrived.
Where was I to sit? I should leave now,
coming all alone to a club to observe
straight people doing whatever it is
they do., .what had I been thinking?
tine, checking behind me to see if I had
No. I was definitely being spoken
Debunking fc-te bi stereotype
Pushing through the crowds of straight
people, (hundreds of them!), I made
my way to the bar, sliding up, all
Wesrerolike. I purposely lowered my
voice as I ordered a beer. I sat with my
legs apart conscious of my masculinity, or lack thereof
I was comfortable up there, on the
barstooL Iliad a good vantage point to
experience the differences—higher up
than most and, thankfully, I was
engaged with a beer. Perhaps I wouldn't have to speak to anybody; and leave
without incident
Suddenly, my heart skipped a beat
I was to be proven wrong.
"Hi!" An Australian slurred voice
came from my left
Was he talking to me? I cartooned
my way through the 'who?me7 rou-
Ian had come for the skiing and stayed
for the women. He had shaggy blond
hair and a deep voice. And a tattoo of a
scorpion on his left forearm.
"Hi" I slowly responded.
And so begun my evening. We
spoke comfortably. He told me wiry he
had come to Canada, and I asked him
about his tattoo.
"So are you really a Scorpio, or is
the tattoo a fake?"
"Neah, I'm actually a Scorpio."
"Yeah, me too."
"Yeah...October 26th"
"November 4th'
And the comfortable, noDrCommit-
tal banter continued for a while. I was
being lulled into having a good time.
But suddenly, my comfort levels were
shot down. I began to panic. What was
I going to do?
I had to go to the bathroom!
I swam with thoughts. What kind of
things does one do in a straight club
bathroom? What sights was I going to
see? I couldn't even begin to imagine.
It was very unnerving—peeing is such
a personal thing. Was I ready to share
it with straight straiagers? Even worse,
would they know from the way I peed
that I was gay?
I bolted for the stall closest to me,
locking the door and self-consciously
and speedily doing my business.
Washing my hands later, I looked
around: urinals, sinks, stalls, bad tile...
it was a regular bathroom. I was beginning to suspect that straight life was
not much different
I returned to Ian and the beers.
They had multiplied I had more to
"Having a good time, mate?"
"Oh yes, very."
And again we talked Talked about
the people at the bar, about the drunken ones and the foolish ones. Talked
about the evening and the fun we were
having. It eventually came out what I
was doing at the club. He laughed
"So, did ya find anything different
or out of the ordinary?' His Australian
drunken slur was endearing.
"Nope. Not this time. But I hear
there's a straight club next door where
the men bite the heads off chickens."
"Really. I heard the same thing
about gay clubs."
And as anti-climactic as it was, that
was my evening in the straight world
My dare with myself ended and I
walked myself home. I thanked myself
for a wonderful evening, and suggested we do it again sometime.
On the way home I bumped into
Jason. He was drunk and dressed to
the nines as usual, a different boy
draped on his arm this evening.
"Ohh. Look! It's aAnthony, he wants
to go to straight clubs." J's Partner de
Hour remained silent and grinned
"Shut IOU, J. I just went to 'A
straight club' and I had a blast"
"Really?" he said in a sobering
"Yeah. I guess we're all socialised
the same way in the Western world We
all do the same things, gay or straight
I guess fear keeps us from exploring
and leaving the comfort of our happy
little sul>cultures."
"Sorry. I'm drunk. Philosophising. I
meant to say I had a good time. I'm
going to go again."
"So you're only going to go to
straight clubs from now on?"
"No, J. I'm just going to go to clubs
from now on."
I left feeling vindicated and
And freed from a cage of limitiTig
possibilities of fun.*
■Ms S3
9:30a.m. - 4:00p.m.
9:30a.m. - 4:00p.im.
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Sexuality in History
By Melinda Marie Jette
History department grad students are tackling race and
gender issues head on. They're addressing the concerns
of teaching assistants over making classes more aware.
On January 23, two workshops were held. The second
workshop in the series, There Were No Gay People Back
Then: Sexuahtyin History and the Teaching of History,
explored the implicit heterosexual conception ofthe past
and outlined ways of placing sexuality in the history curriculum—recovering the
experiences of Queer
The      seminar
allowed graduate
students and faculty to listen to the
concerns of Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual,
and Transgendered students (GLBT). Participants included
graduate arid-undergraduate students,
teaching assistants, lecturers, history
professors, and out UBC faculty members Douglas Sanders (Law) and Becki
Ross (Sociology and
a^nthropology/Women's Studies).
This workshop on sexuality and history
proved a positive forum for the discussion of
Queer issues on campus. Gay, Lesbian, and
Bisexual students talked about their feelings of being
"left out' of history despite the fact that many educators
have made efforts to include women and visible minorities in their course curricula.
A number of the faculty members stressed that simply adding a short section on the history of a marginalised group to a course syllabus is not enough and that
mairing sexuality another essential category of analysis
'siich as race, class, and gender would be more appro
Professor Ross argued that in examining the past, we
ought to look at sexuality in places that historians have
traditionally overlooked it in economics, politics, government policy, education, and medicine. One point all
participants agreed on was the need to place sexuality in
its historical context by attempting to understand sexuality as the people of the past understood it, using their
terms and conceptions. Here Professor Sanders noted
that the term 'Queer' as employed by Gay, Lesbian,
Bisexual and Transgendered people today is itself a
recent historical development and it is still quite contested in the GLBT community.
In concluding the workshop, participants
commented that the session was a valuable exercise in developing an inter-
h disciplinary dialogue at UBC
with regard to queer
studies. By meeting
and talking in an
informal environment, students and faculty established important links that can assist us
in seeing a gay and lesbian
studies minor come to fruition.
An old adage teaches that "knowledge
is power.' One might add that "history is
power' because it can provide people with
knowledge about their past The history of
sexuality is a valid academic subject, as
one student noted, not only because it gives GLBT individuals a sense of their identity, but also because it provides us with a better understanding of the past as a
whole. Indeed, There Were Gay People Back Then. We
just need to take a closer look.*
—Melinda Mariejette is a TA and doctoral
student in the History Department
The Queen speaks out
Alan Woo
Local director Wayne Yung's latest foray into the
queer indie scene, The Queen's Cantonese, is a short
film which tackles racism, language, and sexuality.
Although Yung has explored these themes in previous films this time around, the issues are dealt with
through the medium of a satirical language instruction tape.
"This is the Queer Asian version, where the vocabulary you learn is all Queer Cantonese slang and
ideas, and actors perform a skit that turns
into this gay complicated soap opera,"
explains Yung, during a
candid interview with
The Ubyssey at Videc-In
Even in a predominantly white, straight
society, Yung views his
race and orientation as
advantages as opposed
to handicaps. "If I were
a straight white guy, I'd
have no idea what I
would be malting films
about There would be
just too many general
issues to talk about' he
explains. 'My identity
has helped me focus my
subject matter.'
However, Yung expresses concern over the portrayal of Asian men by the media. "Asian men in our
culture are represented as asexual, not romantic, not
beautiful, and as being quiet and%visible,' he states.
"I try and portray a\sian men m^jgr ways...unfor*n-
natety mainstream media S&flflBNhi-Q2£n as pi *
fraying specific roles and uajpufra|HH|pjO:ri£s..
my films, I by very hard to ackaQwenQFmA celt
stkat avians are sexy."    ' wNr£s%\
v .       ;l»i*r-.*i>jr">'
ON LOCATION Director Wayne Yung on the set of his
In The Queen's Cantonese, not only are Asians
glamorized, but so is Vancouver. 'I find Vancouver
quite boring so I'm portraying Vancouver the way I
wish it was: exciting and exotic," Yung explains.
This film is also not as explicit as its predecessors,
and Yung isn't apprehensive about showing it to his
family, who are supportive of his choice of career.
'My father moved to Canada on the hopes that his
children could do whatever they wanted. He probably
hoped that I would be a doctor or a lawyer, but he's
fine with me being an artist as long as it's what I want
to do. My mother is supportive under one condition—that it pays well.'
However, Yung admits
that it is a tough calling,
and he experiences some
doubts about his filmmaking career despite his love
for it.
"For me, I'm not asking
all straight people to go
out and try gay sex. I'm
just asking them to understand and accept that
there are other sexualities.
I think that's all we ask of
mainstream society," he
Yung's advice for up
and coming directors is to
avoid perfectionism.
"Finish whatever piece
you're working on even if you think it's not perfect,"
he recommends. "Just get it over with and start the
next You will learn a lot more by doing ten medium
tapes than only one perfect tape. I've seen too many
artists flounder and end their career because they couldn't finish that perfect tape, and they never make another one again."
The Queer's Cantonese will be touring through
major North .American cities and will appear this sum-
mf - - at Vancouver's queer film festival, Out on Screen. ♦ A UBYSSEY SPECIAL ISSUE:
In search of the top
queer legal story of 1997
by Doug Sanders JAPAN
After years of struggle and a
Committee, the Australian State
-. /
The Japanese gay oj^aBiasation OCCUR won its court case against the Tokyo City government in September, 199£ .Txakyo had discriiniriatedagainst OCCUR in rental of a youth
centre. The trial, in Japanese, style, went on and on,"butJIiially resulted in^a victory.
ffio-gay mLing of the United Nations, Human Rights
Ci^smania finally repealed its sodomyvlaws, in May,
The NDP government that delivered lesbian and gay equality in a host
of areas—the human rights code, spousal benefits for civil servants,
welfare, the conflict of interest provisions in the,securities act,
adoption—was at it again. The July 1997 amendments to the
Family Relations Act define "spouse" to include common law
and same-sex couples. Same-sex partners now have obligations to pay support to a partner and for a child. The
Liberal opposition members were divided on the legis
lation. The two Reform members voted in favour.        $f
The legislation is the first in North America,
and possibly the world, to state that individu-   /"1_J_1_„ j
als in same-sex relationships are "spouses". /»***"*|^
The idea has now been followed in the rec-  <L_
ommendations of the federal Legislative ^JX
Review Advisory Group on immigratio±± £
law, released in early January. They say
that   "spouse"   should   be   defined   in
immigration law to include heterosexual
and homosexual partners.
In June the Canada Public Service Staff Relations Board
granted a gay civil servant, Ross BoutLlier, five days ***
leave  to  get married  in the Halifax Metropolitan
Community Church. It did not matter that the ceremony would
not be legally recognized by the laws in Nova Scotia. But
Canada continues to refuse to extend spousal benefits, across to the board.
Bit by bit we have won things like health insurance and relocation expenses.
A lesbian won a seat in the Mexican Congress in July. Patria
Jimenez,..representing fhe-Democratic
Party, campaigned on the slogan
"Safe Sex, Safe Vote,
Make the Future Yours."- She passed out condoms in
S^-*^ gay bars and at the annual pride march in Mexico
City. The new lawmaker often displays the rainbow
flag on her desk in Congress. It seems she is the first
Zjj> openly lesbian or gay member of any national legislature
in Latin America.
X  S"*j^i The Netherlands joined Denmark, Norway, Sweden
^•Aw/ and Iceland with a registered partnership law for
same-sex couples. The law came into effect at the beginning of 1998. More dramatically, a special committee established by the
government in response to a demand of the Dutch parliament, reported in October. It told the government to extend full "mar-
,     riage" to same-sex couples, including equal rights to
\j> adopt children.
r\^_^rt*»L,   There were two important court victories in Ontario. In
SrsS-r      / J11116- hi Greaves v. Buist, the Ontario Court of Justice
^*      "T""" applied regular family law rules on child support and on
^y-*^   the relocation of the custodial parent to a lesbian relation-
,-^d'/% ^P The child had been conceived by alternative msemination
1 $, s  within the lesbian relationship.
'*W.^/    In October, in Kane v Ontariq, a lesbian was able to claim a death
benefit after her partner was killed in an automobile accident. Another
Ontario case, decided in 1996, upheld partner support payments. That case,
M v. H, will he heard by the Supreme Court of Canada in March, 1998.
Ecuador's, Constitutional Tribunal tossed out the ban on gay*sex in November, 1997. The
case had been brought by three gay groups. Only three other jurisdictions in Latin .America
ban homosexual acts—Chile, Nicaragua and Puerto Rifr        ' \ i
-Chile, Nicaragua;
The Hawaiian State legislature has allowed same-sex couples to register as "reciprocal beneficiaries" under the first real "registered partnership" law in North America. Registration,
for a mere $8.00 fee, gives the partners equal rights with married heterosexual couples in
areas such as hospital visitation, medical decisions, inheritance, joint ownership of property, family and funeral leave, car insurance, wrongful death lawsuits, domestic violence
protections, disaster relief loans and university housing.
The background of the legislation lies in a strategy to buy-off same-sex marriage,
which the Hawaiian Supreme Court is expected to OK in 1998. Voters will be able to
amend the Hawaiian State Constitution in 1998 to allow marriage to be restricted to
heterosexual couples.
But the price of that piece of inequality is substantive equality as reciprocal beneficiaries. Evan Wolfson, one of the lawyers in the marriage; case, beamed. It shows, he says,
"that you don't get half a loaf by asking for half a loaf. You get half a loaf by fitting for fhe
whole loaf—and then you keep fighting *
South Africa was the winners-last year. Getting the first constitution in the world to
expressly prohibit discrimination on^rae basis of sexual orientation clearly topped all
queer legal stories for 1996. But the mminal laws against homosexual acts continued on
the books. In July, 1997, the High Court in Western Cape Province struck down the criminal provisions' as contrary to the constitution.
1     .
Big changes under the New Labour government of Tony-Blair. For the first time there are
out cabinet ministers, and not just one but two. Cltris Brown is the Minister for National
Heritage. The junior minister for the environment is alesbian; Angela Eagle. Two other
openly gay candidates, Stephen Twigg and Ben Bradshaw wereetected. Twigg defeated former Defence Secretary Michael Portillo in north London. The Blair government has finally formally allowed same-sex partner immigration (but with the stiff requirement of four
years together, hardly equal treatment). The new government is stillto act on the issues of
the military, equal age of consent, and the repeal of local government act section 28. MI5,
the British spy agency, has now lifted its ban on homosexuals. ♦    (    ,
Winner: BC
Runner-up: UK
fE0R DETAILS JCAJJL 1-800-GM-DRIVe| or www.gmcanada.com
——-  - .—-      a.     llT.gi***hff ■ pride
Author Karen X. Tulchinsky wH
be reading from her work and
answering questions in SUB 212A
from 12:30pm-2:00pm.
Pride UBC presents an mfofair in
the SUB Concourse from
Professor Hec Bote wl be tatmg
about me proposed lesbian and Gay
Strafes Niwr for the Faculty of Arts
il SUB 212A from 1230 pnhKOOpm.
Pride UBC presents an Hofai1 to the
SUB Concourse from 10:00am-
PhD History student Mefmda Jette
wl be giving a lecture on Queer
History in SUB 212A from
The SUB AwBtorium wl be showing the fihn "M Over Me" at
7:00pm, and "Jeffrey" at 9:00 pm.
The SUB AudRorium wl be showing the fan "Al Over Me" at 7:00
pm, and "Jeffrey" at 9:00 pm.
Pride UBC's annual valentine's
Dance wl be from 8:00 pm -
12:30 am h the SUB Partyroom.
The dance wl feature the band
Moles Revenge, rants an saw an*
an avataHi Irwtto Pr* UBC tatti it m
W**aq-*s Wan, art UKki SMtn.)
* Wed-Sat 7:30pm
< Closes Saturday
w   Beautiful City
by George F. Walker
Jan 21-Feb 7, 1998
Mon-Sat 7:30pm
Opens Feb 5
A Mouthful
1 of Birds
by Caryl Churchill & David Lan
Feb 4-14,1998
I 822-267^
The Ubyssey Board of Directors
for the 1998-1999 publishing year
President- Craig Bavis
Director- Gordon Fitt (Student at Large)
Director- Ryan Allworth (Student at Large)
Director- Namiko Kunimoto (Student at Large)
Director- Areni Kellepan (Student at Large)
Treasurer- Emily Mak (Staff Representative)
Director- Douglas Quan (Staff Representative)
Director- Joe Clark (Co-ordinating Editor)
Director- Carma Liningstone (Community Representative)
Secretary- Fernie Pereira (UPS Business Manager)
If you need to reach a Board member, telephone Board Secretary, Fernie
Pereira, at 822-6681, by fax to 822-1658, or go to Room 245 SUB
Queer among Queers
being Queer and of color
by Julius Elefante
What image do the words 'Faggot," "Dyke," and "Queer" conjure in
your mind? Probably a limp-wristed, impeccably dressed man?
Stereotype. Maybe a butch-acting woman sporting a crew cut? Another
stereotype. Now, look closely—what ethnicity is this person?
People of color can be Queer, too, and yet, in discussions about
human sexuality, everyone in that set labeled as "Queer" is also
assumed to be white, or so it seems since such discussions eschew
addressing the issues that arise when race and sexual orientation
. intersect. The uncomfortable issue of race is relegated to the sidelines; ethnicity is deemed as less than relevant, and once more, we
people of color are voiceless.
We are the Queer among Queers. When measured against the
Eurocentric-heterosexual-male standard, we fail at least two criteria.
This places us in a position where we are, at least, doubly oppressed:
once for being Queer, and once more for being non-White. This is an
oppression that is both pervasive, as it exists both
within the Queer community as well as the larger community; and pernicious,
since it holds a cancerous
grip from within ourselves.
To be a Queer person of
color means being more
susceptible to the different
forms of racism. Being colored is reason enough for
some to deny, albeit illegally, employment, accommodation, and services. Adding a dimension of sexuality inflames such discriminatory situations as one's
non-heterosexual orientation can be used to express
racism: since racial discrimination is taboo, it's
easier to lay prejudice on
that which society is ambivalent about.
Even when racism is
not blatant—as when gaining employment is not the
problem, but upward mobility is; or when immigrants are systematically stripped of the qualifications they held in
their countries of origin such that in Canada they are confined to
menial labor; or when people of color are subjected to reverse discrimination such that they are offered raises and promotions for the
sole reason of having a non-White skin tone, which may benefit
them initially but will eventually cause harm—being Queer can once
again be used as way to elude the opprobrium that comes with racial
This is why many right-wing bigots are quick to point out that "sexual orientation is not the same as race." For them, this distinction is
vital in fueling their hate: they have an enmity against both race and
sexual orientation and one scapegoats the other. What of us, then, who,
at any given moment in our lives, are both colored and Queer at the
same time? Discrimination is all the same for us.
One of the boons in having a community with which one identifies
is that this community is a source of solidarity. Though some ethnic
groups can certainly count on their communities to offer help, it is a
common experience for many queers withm ethnic communities to
be spurned and denied support. Frequently, those of us who are disowned by our families turn to the Queer cornmunity for love and
acceptance; unfortunately, we soon find out that for a group that
should know all about oppression, this community is not immune to
It is difficult for us to identify with the Queer community. How
could we, when its ideal is so starkly Aryan? Poring through health
pamphlets and gay magazines we are drowned by a deluge of whiteness. Also, this community, we quickly discover, is intensely look-ist,
and the standard by which it measures its members is, in almost
every respect, Eurocentric: tall, blonde, blue eyed.
Do we need to flog, flay and bleach ourselves to Whiteness just to
be felt wanted by that which is supposedly our own community?
For many of us, this is exactly what we do. We beat our own identities down and flail our egos just to bleach the color off our skin. All
this is part of the culture of self-hatred that many of us live in. We
hate ourselves for being Queer. We hate ourselves for being colored.
We hate ourselves because others hate us for being Queer and colored.
As with the problem of racism and homophobia there is no fast
solution. What is needed is a deconstruction of the discriminatory
standards tahat are deeply entrenched in society. This task is grand,
and the first step is to recognize that there is a problem. Bigotry feeds
on denial.* THE UBYSSEY
Double Happiness: Queer and Asian
by Alan Woo
In the October 30, 1997 issue of Xtra West newspaper, publisher Frederick Lee wrote an editorial on the lack of Queer
Asian advocates, in reponse to the Asian Christian groups
protesting gay and lesbian resources in school libraries.
Lee's claims were not unfounded. Where did all the Queer
Asians go?
Nadine Wu, co-facilitator of Asian GAB, a youth group for
Queer Asians held every first and third Sunday at the Centre,
says there is "another side that is more accepting" in the
Asian community. The problem, according to Wu, is that it is
more individualised, where the Asians who do support the
Queer community do   ...   .      .      ..     ..■•■■• #
Historically, I think being of
colour has been a handicap in
the gay community, but I think
it's slowly changing, especially
in large cities like Vancouver
-Wayne Yung
Vancouver Film Maker
"A lot of education is needed in regards to the general Asian
community in Vancouver."
Explains co-worker Wu: "It's not something that's really
talked about. I mean, they (Asians) don't talk about sex and
this is connected to sex."
Thus, there is a need for ethnic-sensitive support and
advocacy groups, such as Monsoon (for Queer women),
ATISH (for South Asian and Middle Eastern Queers),
Bamboo Triangle (for Queer Japanese), etc.
Hu remembers not feeling comfortable going to regular
youth groups. "I've experienced people getting impatient
with me (because of his ESL status) and speaking in a crowd
not exactly go out and
tell it to the world.
Patrick Tubajon,
Program Coordinator
of ASIA (Asian Society
for the Intervention of
AIDS) wrote a letter of
response to Lee's comments in the November 13, 1997 issue of
Xtra West arguing the
claims he made. But his letter was not unanimously received. Tubajon claims he received "a
phone call from a member of the Queer Asian
community saying I was not doing a favour for
them. He was saying it was pulling us [Queer Asians | back
Obviously, Tubajon is proud not only of his Asian heritage but also of bis sexuality. He also explains why organisations such as ASIA are definitely needed.
"This organisation is here so we can intervene and educate people about HIV/AIDS. Since the Asian community is
almost one step behind the mainstream, we have to start
educating them about homophobia first because they
always equate gay with AIDS."
Wei-Hsi Hu. the other co-facilitator of Asian GAB. agrees.
concerns of safety.
"It would have been fun, though," he says. According to
Tubajon, Queer Asians have marched in San Francisco's
Chinese New Year parade for three years now, where it is
well received, whereas it has never been done in Canada.
Tubajon hopes to be the first.
But while barriers are slowly breaking down, other
obstacles arise from within the Queer Asian community.
Many Asians must generally deal with the separation of
new Western world ideas and traditional beliefs and ties.
Wu says that it is an "individual situation, which depends
on which tie you feel a stronger attachment to your traditional background or your new community."
She herself likes to pick and choose, retaining parts of
her cultural heritage that she likes and integrating them
with the new.
The issue of internalised racism also arises. Vancouver
filmmaker Wayne Yung blames the media that bombards the public with white ideals of being a man and
of beauty.
"The white male is the Western mainstream
culture's symbol of male beauty."   Many Asians
he knows, including himself, are attracted only
to Caucasians.
"Historically, I think being of colour has
been a handicap in the Gay community, but I
think it's slowly changing, especially in large
cities like Vancouver. Back where I grew up
in Edmonton, minorities are quite invisible
in the Gay community," says Yung. "I may be standing
right in front of a person, and he would look right around
me and see right through me and I would not even be
there. Here in Vancouver, people tend to have a much
more mixed group of friends and are not so limited here."
Inter-racial relationships are becoming more common
in both the straight and Queer communities, especially in
Vancouver. "I think there's a growing epidemic of yellow
fever in this town," exclaims Yung. Perhaps this fever will
help blend cultures and ideals and pave the way for a freer
and more ODen-minded generation to come.*
• VANCOUVER 688-1277
• VICTORIA 384-2215
where English is the primary language being spoken." He
needed a group where people could relate to his problems
in the light of an Asian culture. Hence, the establishment of
Asian GAB.
Another foray into unchartered territory is the marching
of Queer Asian groups in the Chinese New Year Parade.
Tubajon, who attempted to organise it this year, says that it
did not go through due to the "lack of people in the Queer
Asian communiry who were willing to march.
"It wasn't just lack of interest, but also some people were
not out vet and did not want to be visible while others had
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If the preferred gender of your sexual partner is not
the same as yours, then you shoud be aware that you
are different from a significant portion of the popula-
tion.Have you thought about why you are attracted to
a different gender? Are you comfortable with your
sexuality? Perhaps you should think about it by completing this questionnaire.
Please answer all questions as honestly as possible.
1. When and how did you first decide that you were a heterosexual?
2. What do you think caused your heterosexuality?
3. Is it possible that your heterosexuality stems from a neurotic
fear of the same sex?
4. If you've never slept with a person of the same sex, is it possible
that all you need is a good gay lover?
5. To whom have you disclosed your heterosexual tendencies? How
did they respond?
6. Why do heterosexuals insist on flaunting their heterosexuality?
Can't you just be who you are and keep it quiet?
7. Why do heterosexuals feel compelled to seduce others into their
8. Would you want your children to be heterosexual knowing the
problems they'd face in society?
9. A disproportionate majority of child molestors are heterosexuals. Do you consider it safe to expose your children to heterosexual teachers?
10. Even with alt the societal support that heterosexual marriage
receives, the divorce rate is spiralling, with over half of all marriages failing.. Why are so few heterosexual relationships stable?
11. Why do heterosexuals place so much emphasis on sex?
12. Considering the menace of over-population, how could the
human race survive if everyone were heterosexual like you?
13. Could you trust a heterosexual therapist to be objective?
14. How can you be a full person if you limit yourself to compulsive
and exclusive heterosexuality and fail to develop your natural,
healthy homosexual potential?
15. There seem to be very few happy heterosexuals. Techniques
have been developed which enameyou to change if you really
want to. Have you considered aversion therapy?
16. How do you feel about the form "straight"? Do you feel that it
adequately defines who you are?
' 17. Do you see your sexuality as being central to your sense of
118. Do you feel that afJ heterosexuals have an obligation to be
"out" and disciose their sexual orientation?*
2 $mall-$12.95
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