Cross Points to address race, class

Lovely Murrell

Cross Points continues Thursday, July 22 with a discussion of racism in the LGBT community. This week’s panel will focus on discrimination, class and privilege, and how these things are affecting the equality movement.

Panelists will include GetEQUAL NOW’s Cd Kirven, Mohammed Rahman of DFW BiNet and DJ Anderson of Equality March Texas. Lovely Murrell, a local co-chair of Creating Change, will moderate.

The series concludes next week with a panel on religion.

“We’ve gotten a lot of positive feedback,” said organizer Latisha McDaniel. “And we’re looking forward to continuing later with a new series.”

She said 20 to 30 people have attended each discussion.

The program begins at 7 p.m. at Resource Center Dallas.

—  David Taffet

CROSSPOINTS panel to address opportunities, pitfalls of being out at work

Dennis Coleman

The opportunities and pitfalls of being out at work will be discussed at this week’s CROSSPOINTS panel discussion at 7 p.m. Thursday, July 1 at the Gay and Lesbian Community Center. Equality March Texas is coordinating the six-week series, which will take a break next week for the holiday.

Union organizer Mike Lo Vuolo will moderate this week’s panel discussion.

CROSSPOINTS organizer Latisha McDaniel said five people are tentatively scheduled to be on the panel.

Dennis Coleman from Lambda Legal will offer a legal perspective on what rights people have to be out at work and what rights employers have to discriminate pending passage of the federal Employment Non-Discrimination Act.

Laura Martin, LGBT community liaison officer for the Dallas Police Department, will give her perspective on being out in an organization with few other out employees.

Binet’s Andi Reis will talk about being an out bisexual.

Louise Young and Rafael McDonnell will talk about Out & Equal employee groups. Young formed the LGBT groups at Texas Instruments and later at Raytheon when they purchased her division from TI. McDonnell is strategic communications and programs manager at Resource Center Dallas.

“There are plenty of pitfalls to being out at work,” said McDaniel. “But I hope they talk about some of the benefits. Being able to concentrate on your work rather than on people finding out about your personal life.”

“Don’t ask, don’t tell,” which McDaniel described as the biggest example of workplace discrimination, will also be discussed.

—  David Taffet

The gays go to the Mega March

Staff writer David Taffet shot these photos Saturday featuring some of the LGBT folks who participated in the Mega March for Immigration Reform in downtown Dallas. He’ll have a full story on gays and immigration in Friday’s Voice.

The LGBT groups that participated in the Mega March that are in the video include Rainbow LULAC, Equality March Texas and Queer Liberaction Denton.

The video begins at the Meyerson Symphony Center where the LGBT marchers gathered. They joined the main march from Cathedral Guadalupe on Ross Avenue to Dallas City Hall.The march ended with speakers and the playing of “America the Beautiful” by lesbian writer Katharine Lee Bates.

Si se puede!

—  John Wright

Mega March includes LGBT groups

The Mega March for immigration reform attracted tens of thousands of people to downtown Dallas today.

LGBT groups met at the Morton Meyerson Symphony Center, one block from the main staging area on Ross Avenue. The march was scheduled for 1 p.m. but didn’t step off until 1:30.

In this short video, a gay contingent led by the LGBT LULAC Council is followed by a mass of people that filled at least 10 city blocks, curb to curb.

Also marching with Rainbow LULAC were members of QueerLiberAction Denton, Equality March Texas, GetEQUAL and Congregation Beth El Binah.

—  David Taffet

Equality March 2010 organizers will beat the heat and take their message to Main Street

In other march-related news, as I was nosing around YouTube last night, I came across this short promotional video for the Equality March 2010 in Dallas. This is the second incarnation of last year’s “Million Gay March,” in which thousands (yes, thousands) braved 100-degree heat to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the Stonewall Rebellion — and, as it turned out, get fired up about the Rainbow Lounge raid.

This morning I spoke with organizer Latisha McDaniel of Equality March Texas, who confirmed what is stated at the end of the video — that the event has been moved to October this year.

“We discussed about last year, with the heat and everything, how awful it was,” McDaniel said.  “We decided to have it around National Coming Out Week.”

While organizers have settled on a date, Oct. 16, they’re still working to finalize a route. After being accused of preaching to the choir by holding the march in Oak Lawn last year, McDaniel said the group looked at Oak Cliff, the SMU area and Addison, but is now zeroing in on downtown Dallas as the likely location, possibly followed by a rally at Victory Park.

“A lot of people had concerns that we were basically speaking to our own people, so we’re going to take our message to Main Street,” McDaniel said.

But isn’t Oct. 16 awfully close to September’s Pride celebration?

“Pride is more a of a festive thing. This is more of a march commemorating National Coming Out Week, so I’m not really too worried about it.”

For more info about Equality March 2010, visit the group’s Web site or e-mail info@equalitymarchtexas.org.

UPDATE: McDaniel says credit for the video goes to Jason Williams, who’s also on her “short list of baby daddies.”

—  John Wright

RCD urging people to call DART

Resource Center Dallas is urging people to contact DART board members in response to the transit agency’s alleged discrimination against a transgender employee. Representatives from RCD and other groups this week asked the DART board to add gender identity and expression to the agency’s nondiscrimination policies. Here’s RCD’s Facebook message:

If you live in the DART service area, Resource Center Dallas urges you to contact your representatives on the DART board and urge them to take action. The next board meeting is Tuesday, March 9. DART’s Customer Response Center is 214-749-3333. Please pass this along.

Also, a quick clarification to my story in today’s Voice: LGBT advocates who attended this week’s DART board meeting were Pamela Curry, a friend of the employee’s; Patti Fink of the Dallas Gay and Lesbian Alliance; Erin Moore of Stonewall Democrats; Rafael McDonnell of RCD; Latisha McDaniel of Equality March Texas; and Blake Wilkinson and Corbin Bates of Queer LiberAction.

—  John Wright

Equality March Texas Holocaust Candlelight March

This is a video of the candlelight march and reception at the Melrose to remember LGBT victims of the Holocaust. The march was held on Jan. 27. The march was held to bring awareness to the proposed Uganda genocide law that targets LGBT people and their friends and families.

—  David Taffet

Freedom to Marry Day — Part II

Blake Wilkinson of Queer LiberAction and Dallas County Clerk John Warren square off inside the marriage license office last year.
Blake Wilkinson of Queer LiberAction, left, and Dallas County Clerk John Warren square off inside the marriage license office last year.

Last week same-sex couple Kay Mathews and Wendy Churitch renewed their vows in front of the Dallas County Records Building in a demonstration to mark Freedom To Marry Day. But the Records Building was closed because of the weather, so they were unable to go inside and request a marriage license from the County Clerk’s Office. Which brings us to tomorrow, when Mathews and Churitch, along with activists from Queer LiberAction and Equality March Texas, will take care of unfinished business. The group will gather in front of the Records Building at 9 a.m. before marching inside. This portion of the demonstration resulted in a heated exchange last year between QL founder Blake Wilkinson and County Clerk John Warren (shown above). And especially given some of the other Freedom to Marry demonstrations around the country last week (like this one and this one, for example), it’ll be interesting to see how Part II plays out.

—  John Wright

Freedom to Marry Day, 2010

Kim Davis, right, and Rose Preizier
Kim Davis, right, and Rose Preizier

Last year on Feb. 12, Kim Davis and Rose Preizier were married in a ceremony outside Dallas’ Records Building during a Freedom to Marry Day event staged by Queer LiberAction. The newlyweds, backed up by supporters from QL, then marched into the Records Building to request a marriage license.

They were denied the license, of course, since Texas has a constitutional amendment banning legal recognition of same-sex marriages.

The amendment is still on the books this year, but that won’t stop Queer LiberAction and Equality March Texas, two direct action groups that are working together to once again mark Freedom to Marry Day with a wedding and a march into the Records Building to demand a marriage license for the newly joined couple.

This year’s Freedom to Marry Day event starts at noon on Historical Plaza, outside the Records Building. And this year, it seems, the LGBT activists are going to have some unwelcome guests at the wedding.

According to an e-mail I received today from our good buddy “Pastor Joey” Faust of Kingdom Baptist Church in Mansfield, “Many Christians (including Kingdom Baptist Church, and Pastor Faust) are planning on protesting this wicked event.”

The e-mail goes on to explain that Christians “should be the light and salt of this world,” and that they are called on by the Bible to “hinder evil by reproving it and exposing it.” Pastor Joey also reminds readers that Kingdom Baptsit is the group that staged the counter-protest outside Fort Worth City Hall last year when LGBT activists gathered outside to encourage the City Council to vote for including protections for trans people in the city’s nondiscrimination ordinance, and that Kingdom Baptist was also “responsible for the Protest Gay Day event at the Texas Ranger’s stadium a few years ago.”

So, if you can, get down to Historical Plaza on Friday at noon and help make sure that the couple getting married that day have more well-wishers in the crowd than Pastor Joey and his group can muster up to try and ruin the day.

—  admin

DVtv: Fort Worth City Hall protests

I’m not sure what my favorite part of this video is. It could be when the anti-gay protester states that incest causes transgenderism, or when I ask Pastor Joey Faust whether his church is really in a double-wide trailer, or when Faust blames gays for the Fort Hood tragedy, or the confrontations involving Queer LiberAction’s Rick Vanderslice. I’m not used to the video camera — and you can tell — but as always DVtv Segment Producer Israel Luna does a great job piecing it all together.

—  John Wright