Top of Page
Stories from the current issue of the Chronicle. Read or Place a Personal Ad. Find out where you can pick up a Chronicle near you. Calendar of upcoming community events.     Read or Submit. Buying, selling, hiring, looking, renting, etc.    Classified ads. Listings of businesses and non-profit organizations.
News Stories from the Chronicle.

News stories from the Gay People's Chronicle

Back to our Home Page. Masthead, Privacy Notice, Address, Submissions, Deadlines, Letters and Copyright notices. Theatre, Arts, Movies and More Get home delivery of the Chronicle and never miss a thing. Past lead stories from the Chronicle are here. Join in our Community Discussion Forum and speak your mind.

STORIES ON THIS PAGE:
 
 
 
 
JOIN OUR MAILING LIST

Join our mailing list and keep up on the latest news!
Enter e-mail:
Join
Remove
 
DISCUSSION
Share your thoughts on this story in our forum area.
Recommended Gay/Lesbian Books
DID YOU KNOW?

All of the businesses, social groups and organizations listed in the Chronicle have thousands of members across Ohio.

Thousands of people who read the Chronicle and visit our website every week to get the latest news and info.

Thousands of people who will see your advertisement in the Chronicle, in print or online.

Chronicle readers count on us to help them find gay-friendly businesses and services.

Can you really afford not to advertise with us?

DISCUSSION
Share your thoughts on this story in our forum area.
 
SUBSCRIBE
Keep up on all the gay news with more stories like these. Get home delivery of the Chronicle and you won't be left in the dark!

Top Stories This Week in the Chronicle.
Pride Guide - June 6, 2003

Cincinnati Pride expands to fill a full weekend

Greater Cincinnati Pride 2003 kicks off on Saturday, June 7 with the �official� start of the Pride Festival in Hoffner Park at 4 pm.

No longer confined to �the circle� in Hoffner Park, the festival expands to all corners of the 2�-acre space, allowing for larger crowds while achieving a more relaxed atmosphere.

The festivities continue on Sunday, June 8, as marchers gather two miles away in Burnet Woods for the fourth annual Pride parade.

Then at 1 pm, the parade will begin. This year�s procession will be led by an assortment of convertibles both new and vintage that will carry all the rally participants. Following this will be Jacob�s on the Avenue�s Mercedes convertible carrying the parade marshals, Mr. and Mrs. Greater Cincinnati Pride 2003, Kyle Robinson and Ivanna Lickya. Finishing out the 2003 Greater Cincinnati Pride Parade will be hundreds of marchers, including the Queen City Rainbow Band.

As in past years, the parade will exit Burnet Woods by turning right onto Clifton Avenue, then left onto Ludlow, and continue north on Ludlow until it arrives at the festival already in progress at Hoffner Park.

The parade will arrive in Northside around 2 pm. There, the entire community will gather once again in Hoffner Park, as the Pride Festival continues until 7 pm.

On a final note, the Cincinnati Pride Committee asks the community for their financial support for Pride. At each entrance to the festival there is a booth for donations. Please help the committee achieve their vision for the future of GLBT Pride in greater Cincinnati.

For the most complete, up to date information about Greater Cincinnati Pride 2003, se the web site at www.cincypride.com.

Ken Colegrove is the coordinator of Cincinnati Pride.

Saturday June 7

4:00 pm -- Festival in Hoffner Park

4:30 pm � Cincinnati Men�s Chorus

5:00 pm � Beatrice

5:15 pm � Annette Shepherd Band

6:00 pm � Tristen Shields

6:15 pm � Poetry from Sista! Sista!

6:30 pm � Jake Speed and the Freddies

7:00 pm � Jayne Sachs

7:45 pm � The Know Theatre Tribe

8:00 pm � Queen City Rainbow Band

8:30 pm � Vicki D�Salle Quartet

Sunday June 8

Noon -- Rally at Burnet Woods in Clifton

1:00 pm -- Parade Step-Off From Burnet Woods, march to Hoffner Park

2:00 pm � Ryan Adcock

2:45 pm -- Pike 27

3:15 pm � Antara

3:30 pm � Kyle Robinson & Ivanna Lickya

3:45 pm � The Fairmount Girls

4:15 pm � Poetry from Sista! Sista!

4:30 pm � Messerly & Ewing

5:15 pm � Miss Darryl Demure

5:30 pm � The Know Theatre Tribe

5:45 pm � Freekbass

 


Pride Erie Picnic will be a sunny day at the beach

Erie, Pa.--The Pride Erie Picnic will be held at Presque Isle State Park at the Beach 11 Pavilion on Saturday, June 14, from 2 pm to sundown.

Hot dogs, hamburgers and beverages will be provided. Please bring a dish to pass. Paper plates and plastic silverware will be available. Donations will be gratefully accepted.

As always, allies and families welcome. Bring children or parents, but parents are responsible for taking care of kids.� There is playground equipment near the shelter.� Festivities begin at 2 pm with games, including the perennial favorite, volleyball.

The annual Family Portrait will be taken after eating. The picture will appear on Erie Gay News� web site, www.eriegaynews.com, and also in the print edition for July.

Bring lawn chairs, blankets, rollerblades and sunscreen. Volunteers are asked to help with clean up, cooking and set up. If you would like to volunteer, contact Michael Mahler at 814-4569833, info@eriegaynews.com; or Brian Skelly at 814-4526228, leelynn@erie.net.

There will be several thank you cards for event sponsors on the info table. Please sign all cards so that the people and businesses that helped out know how much they are appreciated.

Because of state law, alcohol and sales by outside vendors are not permitted. Please respect this. If you bring alcohol or are obviously drunk, you will be asked to leave the picnic.

Michael K. Mahler is the editor of Erie Gay News.



Sanduskys first Pride is weekend of Cedar Point day

Sandusky--The Sandusky area GLBT community will be celebrating Pride 2003 with our first annual picnic on Saturday, June 14, from 2 to 8 p.m. in Lion�s Park on West Monroe Street.

All ages are welcome. We are asking everyone to bring a covered dish to share. Burgers, hot dogs, and soft drinks will be furnished by the committee. A free will donation will be accepted to help cover those expenses. Many games and activities are being planned to guarantee a good time for all, rain or shine. Everyone attending the picnic will receive a coupon for $1 off admission to Club X in downtown Sandusky for the evening of June 14. Lions Park is a municipal park, therefore alcohol is prohibited.

Gay Day at Cedar Point

Sunday, June 15, is Fathers� Day and the traditional (although unrecognized officially) Gay Day at Cedar Point amusement park. Everyone is encouraged to wear red or rainbow colors. A �family� photo will be taken at the park at 11:20 a.m. at the Aquatic Stadium near the Wicked Twister. People who want to be part of the inaugural �family� photo should gather there at 11 am.

Cedar Point and Sandusky Pride are working to make this year a positive experience for all. A good turnout for the photo will give the park an idea how well our community turns out for the occasion. The photo will be available on our web site for downloading following the event. Come out and show your pride colors.

December Gayla is set

The Sandusky Gay Pride Committee also is planning its second annual Holiday Gayla Dinner dance for December 12, 2003 in the Royal Palm room in the Greentree Inn. Last year�s event was attended by 80 area men and women and a good time was had by all. Tickets for the 2003 Gayla will be available in the fall.

The Pride Committee�s web site is at http://ajw.freeshell.org/sanduskygaypride. The most current news about local events is always posted there.

Ed Taylor and Gil Thurman are members of the Sandusky Pride committee.

 

 


Dayton Pride continues with dinner and a picnic

Dayton--Dayton GLBT Pride 2003 celebrates the lives of the people in the community and what brings those lives together. This year�s theme highlights these common bonds.

Pride 2003, �Flying Proud, Soaring to New Heights� will highlight the GLBT community�s contributions to aviation and Ohio�s history/herstory. The celebration began with the parade and festival on June 1, and it continues. Join Pride in celebrating 100 years of flight and Ohio�s bicentennial in GLBT fashion with two more Pride events.

On Saturday, June 21, the Pride Expo starts at 5 pm at the Dayton Convention Center at the corner of 5th and Main. Tickets for the Pride Dinner which follows are available at Q Gifts, the Stage Door, Club Diva and 464 on 5th.

The featured entertainer for the Pride Dinner will be comedian Bernie Lubbers. He appears regularly on television and radio, and is one of the most requested performers on the Bob & Tom Show. Lubbers has worked with some of the biggest names in show business, recently opening for the legendary Ray Charles.

The following day, Sunday June 22, come on down for the Outdoor Family Pride Picnic from 12 noon until 5 pm at Carillon Park on Patterson Blvd., across from NCR. A GLBT friends and family day, there will be groups and business information booths, and free entry to the historical park. Tours open to all attendees with entry ticket.

Pack a picnic, bring a blanket.

For more info, go to www.gaydayton.org/dlgc, contact pridedayton@aol.com or 937-2753059

These events take a number of volunteers, organizations and businesses working together to bring all of the planned activities to the Dayton community. The Pride Partnership has been fortunate to have many people and groups helping out each year, if you or your group has not been involved, consider this an invitation to join us.

Scotty Didier is the chair of Dayton Pride 2003.

 


Cleveland Pride events are set to fill the entire month of June

Cleveland--By any measure, June is filled with opportunities to celebrate Pride. Cleveland Pride, consistent with its goal of filling the month with Pride-related activities, has organized a series of events, from Pride Night at the Indians to Laugh Out Proud, that provide ample opportunity for all to show off their pride.

Laugh Out Proud, an evening showcasing LGBT comedic talent where the audience picks the queen or king of comedy, starts at 7:30 p.m. on Monday, June 9, at the Improv, located in the Powerhouse in the Flats. Admission is $5.

Watch the Cleveland Indians take on the San Diego Padres at 7:05 p.m. on Tuesday, June 10. A special block of tickets reserved by Cleveland Pride is on sale now for $25 per ticket. Get your tickets today by calling 216-3710214 or by going to www.clevelandpride.org.

Demonstrate your pride and your prowess at pool by playing in the Pride Pool Tournament from June 8 to June 19. Tournament games will be played at Longevity on June 8, Union Station on June 9, the Grid on June 11, the Tool Shed on June 12, Muggs on June 16, Rockies on June 17, the Leather Stallion on June 18 and concludes with the finals at Longevity on June 19. The winner will receive a $200 grand prize and trophy. Information about the Pride Pool Tournament can be obtained at any of the bars hosting the event.

Party your nights away at Pride Nights and official Pride Party events scheduled throughout much of June. The Nickel, 4365 State Road, celebrates pride with Pride Night commencing at 10 p.m. on Friday, June 6. Other establishments joining in the pride celebration include Rockies, 9208 Detroit Ave. at 11 p.m. on June 13 and M.J.�s Place, 11633 Lorain Avenue, at 10 p.m. on Saturday, June 14.

The weekend of the Pride celebration, get warmed up for the festival by attending the official Pre-Party starting at 10 p.m. on Friday, June 20 at the Grid-n-Orbit, 1437 St. Clair Avenue. Those with stamina can party on after the festival by attending the official Post-Party at Union Station/Bounce, 2814 Detroit Avenue, beginning at 10 p.m. on Saturday, June 21. To finish out the weekend, Moda at 1871 West 25th St. will have Federation on Sunday night.

Cleveland Pride urges everyone to attend or participate in its other official Pride events:

The Frontrunners Pride Run/Walk, Edgewater Park, Sunday, June 15, 8 a.m. registration, 9 a.m. start, call 216-6239933 for more information;

The North Coast Men�s Chorus concert, �Bustin� Out All Over,� at Waetjen Auditorium at Cleveland State University, Saturday, June 21 at 8 p.m. and Sunday, June 22 at 3 p.m. Visit www.ncmchorus.org for tickets or call 216-5560590 for more information;

The Interfaith Pride Service, at Trinity Cathedral, Euclid Avenue at East 22nd Street, June 29 at 5:30 p.m.

And, for the second year in a row, the only place to find official Cleveland Pride merchandise is at www.clevelandpride.org. Get decked out in gear with our fabulous, �Pride. 24.7.365� theme for under $20.

Available only through the Pride web site, jerseys, t-shirts, hats, mugs, mouse pads and wall clocks are the perfect way to express LGBT pride. Every purchase will well as benefit Cleveland Pride.

The secure site accepts credit cards, checks, money orders, and PayPal. Payment is also accepted by phone or mail, details available on the web site. Items will be shipped within two to three business days, which means they will arrive in time for you to wear it to all of the Pride festivities. Wear your pride where everyone can see.

Michael Zaverton is a Cleveland Pride board member. Dana Aritonovich is a committee member of Cleveland Pride.

 


Go to Discussion Forum Top of Page

Cleveland Pride to have a bigger, more exciting parade

Cleveland--The Cleveland Lesbian-Gay-Bi-Trans Pride Parade on Saturday, June 21 will deliver more pride and fun than ever, with the promise of floats, groups, vehicles, marchers and more winding through the streets of downtown.

Participants will gather at East 18th St. and Euclid Ave. at 11:30 am. The parade steps off at 1 pm, proceeding west on Euclid Ave., then north on East 9th Street to Voinovich Park, the rally and festival site. For those who would rather cheer on the parade than participate, prime viewing locations are on East 9th St. at Superior, St. Clair or Lakeside Aves.

All proud members of the LGBT and allied communities are encouraged to participate. Individuals or groups without vehicles march for free, and those with floats and vehicles are asked to pay a nominal fee of $20 per vehicle. Decorated vehicles will compete for trophies in the float competition, including Best Float, Most Intriguing Design, and Funniest Float.

This year Cleveland Pride urges families to participate in the parade. In particular, children are asked to ride their bikes in the �Tykes on Bikes� procession.

�What�s a parade without kids and their decorated bikes?� said committee member Ricki Audrick. �Not a parade at all, which is why every child riding a bike will receive an award.�

This year�s parade will have six grand marshals. They are:

Ray Graham, a gay man living in Cleveland, England. He contacted Pride in the fall of 2002 to inquire about Cleveland, Ohio, because in his hometown, homophobia is rampant. On his first trip to America this June, Pride is ecstatic to honor him with a grand marshal position, in the hope that he can take that energy back to his home.

Judy Maruszan recently left the Cleveland Lesbian-Gay Center. During her tenure, she created the Safe Schools Are For Everyone program, which works to increase acceptance and safety for LGBT youth in school systems. She has also served on the board of the Cleveland Gay Lesbian Straight Educators Network. She is now a community education specialist for the ACLU, where her dedication to LGBT youth continues.

Heights Family for Equality is honored this year for its work in rebuffing efforts to repeal city worker domestic partner benefits in Cleveland Heights. After a successful campaign last year, the group is now working to bring a ballot initiative to the public to create a domestic partnership registry, which would be open to both residents and non-residents of Cleveland Heights.

Robert Burns is a staff member with the AIDS Taskforce of Greater Cleveland. His work with the Brother-to-Brother program brings HIV education to African American gay and bisexual men, including at-risk youth. He is also an activist in the community, and a well-known DJ who has donated his time to the Pride festival.

Richard Gildenmeister is a master bookseller at Joseph Beth Books in Shaker Heights. At 70 years of age, he has been out as a gay man his entire life and serves as an inspiration to all he comes in contact with.

Joe Santiago became the first out gay man to run for office in Cleveland when he ran for City Council in 2001. While his campaign was not successful, his candidacy allowed LGBT issues to be highlighted, and laid the groundwork for future LGBT candidates to gain office. He has also worked to form connections between the LGBT and Latino communities.

Two additional grand marshals will be announced prior to the Cleveland Pride celebration on June 21. Grand marshals will ride in a perennial favorite, the Rocket Car from Euclid Beach Park.

For the first time, the rally will be held at the end of the parade at the festival site beginning at 2 pm. Speakers will include youth activist Jonathan Jaxson, Cleveland Pride president Brian Thornton and politicians, as well as entertainment.

To help Pride plan, all participants are asked to register in advance. Parade registration forms are available on the Cleveland Pride web site, www.clevelandpride.org. Participants entering a vehicle or float are able to pay the $20 fee online at the web site.

Joan Burda is the Cleveland Pride co-coordinator. Brian Thornton is the president of Cleveland Pride.

 


Go to Discussion Forum Top of Page

 

The Midwest celebrates at Columbus Pride Holiday

Columbus--As the central Ohio community continues to ride the wave of Pride from the record-setting event in 2002, plans are well under way for Pride Holiday 2003.

The largest Pride event in the Midwest grew even larger last year when a police-estimated 42,000 people joined in the events of the 21st Pride celebration in central Ohio.

This Stonewall Columbus-sponsored event is planned annually by a volunteer committee and staff. The expected attendance for Pride Holiday 2003 is 60,000. Attendance at this celebration of diversity and community spirit has doubled since 2001. Pride Holiday in Columbus attracts an incredibly diverse audience from a six-state region, including Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Kentucky, Indiana, Michigan and, of course, Ohio.

Pride Holiday 2003, titled �Columbus: Where the Midwest Celebrates Pride,� has grown to be a week-long celebration highlighting the best that Columbus has to offer the GLBT community. Some key events are:

Thursday, June 26

An Exhibit of Pride, featuring a juried mixed-media art show of local GLBT artists at Club 202, 202 East Long Street, downtown Columbus.

Friday, June 27

�Rockin� in the Streets,� featuring the best in local female rockers and national artists to be announced soon. Further details will be available at www.columbuspride.org. Axis Nightclub (outdoor event) 6 pm, 775 N. High St.

Saturday, June 28

The Ecumenical Service, a celebration of faith and love prior to the parade and festival, 10 am, First Congregational United Church of Christ, 444 E. Broad St.

The Main Event: the Pride Parade originating from Goodale Park, step-off at 1 pm, corner of Dennison and Buttles Avenues, with the Pride Festival at Bicentennial Park at the end of the parade route from 2 pm until 6 pm

�Dancing in the Streets,� featuring dance music and national artists to be announced soon. Further details at www.columbuspride.org. Axis Nightclub, outdoor event, 6 pm, 775 N. High St.

Sunday, June 29

Pride Brunch at the Crowne Plaza, 11:30 am, $35 tickets, 33 E. Nationwide Blvd.

Bat �n� Rouge, drag softball at its best, 3 pm, $7 at the gate, the Africentric School Field, corner of Grant and Livingston Avenues.

The week-long celebration will also feature educational programs, a political action day, a fashion show benefit, a float-building workshop for parade participants and health and wellness programs for the community.

Pride Holiday 2003, the main event is Saturday, June 28, with the annual parade and festival. Making its return to kick off the Pride March will be a rally at the parade step-off at Goodale Park.

The rally will begin at noon and parade step-off immediately following at 1 pm. The parade will wind through downtown and end at Bicentennial park, where the Pride Festival will pick up full steam at 2 pm. The event features a street fair featuring more than 100 exhibitors, vendors and food service, offering some of Columbus� finest foods and crafts.

The main stage of entertainment at the festival will feature local and national acts with the main attraction, June and Bonnie Pointer, formally of the Pointer Sisters. A second stage also continues the local flavor and some of the finest drag acts in the region.

Other performers who will be lighting up the stages include slam poet Alix Olson, Men of Rainbow, Ann Lincoln, the Columbus Stompers, Columbus Gay Men�s Chorus, Habeeba�s Dance of the Arts, Virginia West and the Capital City Marching Band.

Bringing a call to love and unity at the end of the festival is the mass commitment ceremony, performed by Rev. Rickie Marecek. In 2002, Rev. Marecek performed a union ceremony for more than 60 couples, sending a strong statement that GLBT relationships are valid and visible.

Again in 2003, we continue the tradition of the �Rainbow Banners� proclaiming the event on downtown Columbus streets, and past the Ohio Statehouse. With your support, Stonewall Columbus will continue this tradition in 2003 adding greater visibility and community pride throughout the month of June.

The Family Area will be further enhanced this year featuring entertainment and activities for children and parents. Parents expressed the joy of being able to bring their children and having a safe, shaded space for them to run around and play.

For additional information on sponsorship, support for the Pride Banners or anything associated with Pride 2003, please contact Stonewall Columbus at 614-2997764. Save the date and show your Pride in Columbus and beyond.

Patrick Gallaway is the development director of Stonewall Columbus.

 


 

No kisses at dockside

Although they served with openly gay and lesbian British troops in Iraq, American GIs still come home to a closet

�It is important to support gay and lesbian servicemembers overseas and at home regardless of what your political opinions about the war are,� said Jen of San Diego. �Gay servicemembers are working hard to keep themselves safe. �Don�t ask, don�t tell� is a burden to all of them and their families.�

Jen, 27, who asked that her last name not be used, served in the Navy from 1995-2002 before she was kicked out for being a lesbian. Her partner Cathie, 34, (not her real name) returned home in May, after eight months of training and deployment aboard a ship during the attack on Iraq.

This Navy couple experienced the events of the past four months far differently than their heterosexual counterparts, and will celebrate Pride knowing that they must continue to hide until Cathie has enough years of service to retire.

�Pride has a special meaning this year,� said Cathie. �I feel like I have been missing out by not coming out, so it�s like a relief to be able to be around the gay community.�

It has been ten years since Congress enacted the �don�t ask, don�t tell� policy after President Clinton�s attempt to lift the ban on gays serving in the armed forces.

The policy was a compromise between Clinton, military leaders and members of Congress who fought the president�s attempt to keep a campaign promise.

It is not known how many U.S. servicemembers are gay or lesbian, but a study by sociologist Rhonda Evans for the Center for the Study of Sexual Minorities in the Military in 2001 found that two to eight percent of men and one to six percent of women serving have engaged in same-sex sexual behavior.

Approximately one in every 2,000 servicemembers is discharged for homosexuality, and men who are veterans have same-sex sexual experiences at the high end of the general population.

Historically, the military has been used as a laboratory for social design, and military personnel policies such as desegregation have been copied throughout the civilian sector.

Spouse support not available

Iraq was the largest military mobilization since the enactment of �don�t ask, don�t tell.� The earlier Afghanistan operation was the first where U.S. forces served alongside the British military since Britain lifted its gay military ban in 2000.

These recent deployments indicate that while �don�t ask, don�t tell� continues to harm gay servicemembers, the reasons given by the military and many in Congress for developing the law ten years ago are proving baseless.

Jen and Cathie met 19 months ago while both were in the Navy. Jen, a Naval Academy graduate with dreams of being a pilot, always knew she is a lesbian. Cathie was married to a man for the first few years of her naval career.

Jen got tired of lying and sent a letter to her commanding officer telling him she is a lesbian. Because she was good at her job, her commanders stalled her discharge process for two years, four months.

Cathie, who has one more tour of duty before she can retire with a military pension, hides her orientation and any indication that she has a partner.

That hiding made her active duty rough for both of them.

�The support networks for other [heterosexual] partners and spouses were not available to me,� said Jen.

That network includes access to the commissary where purchases can be made below retail cost, health benefits for spouses of active duty military personnel, guidance services, parties, and ability to view videotapes of servicemembers at their jobs. Partners of wounded servicemembers cannot visit their loved ones in military hospitals or assist in treatment.

Because Jen and Cathie were both in the Navy, they were more prepared than most couples for Cathie�s departure.

�You have to tell how you are feeling in order to maintain a bond,� said Jen, �so we didn�t censor too much.�

The women set up a separate e-mail account in Cathie�s name for Jen to e-mail her daily so as not to trigger an investigation. �And I never signed my name,� said Jen.

Unlike Army and Marine units, Navy personnel have access to daily e-mail, though it can be monitored.

But Cathie said her hiding has a negative impact on her unit.

�I supervise a division of about 20-30 people,� she said, �and we are supposed to be role models on duty and off duty. I can�t even have them over for a get-together, and that closes me off to the junior personnel.�

�It�s an insult not to be able to come out,� said Cathie, �and it�s worse with the lower ranks. The new generation is hard-working, intelligent, and very accepting. Some times they tell me about their siblings who are gay, which is their way to tell me it would be okay for me to come out to them.�

Trip home ends Air Force career

Jason Pickart of Dayton never made it to Iraq. The 21-year-old Chinese translator, who served as a team leader for neurosurgery at Wright Patterson Air Force Base, was discharged February 28 for homosexual conduct.

Pickart had confided to a friend that he was going home Thanksgiving to come out to his father. This started an investigation that led to his discharge. He had been in the Air Force since one week after high school.

He says he still can�t get the military out of his life, though. His father, upon learning that his son was discharged for being gay, told Pickart it was the worst thing that ever happened to him (the father).

�I came from a military family, and went to a military boarding school,� said Pickart. �Now, I need to learn how the civilian world works.�

Pickart said that by not going to Iraq, he feels like he missed out on an experience he will never understand.

Pickart was set to speak at Dayton�s Pride rally May 31. But despite friends� attempts to get him to do otherwise, Pickart says he won�t appear at any Pride events in his Air Force uniform.

�I�m not comfortable doing that,� said Pickart. �It wouldn�t be a good way to represent the Air Force, and my personal values make it inappropriate.�

Serving with gay coalition members

Asked in writing if U.S. servicemembers reported any problems with unit cohesion, morale, or effectiveness resulting from service next to British units with openly gay members in Iraq, the Department of Defense replied: �We are not aware of any such incidents.�

Army spokesperson Martha Rudd reported that the Army Central Command Policy Officer also �recieved no such reports.�

�We have no way of knowing how many, if any, members of the coalition, if any, practice homosexual behavior. Nor would we be concerned with tracking such statistics,� said the Department of Defense about U.S. forces� interaction with the openly gay servicemembers from Britain and other coalition nations.

Evans� study documents that gay discharges go down during times of need, and up during times of peace.

�Discharges often all but stop during conflict, only to pick up again as soon as fighting is over,� said Evans, citing figures from World War II, Korea, Vietnam, and the 1991 Gulf War, when gay discharges were actually put on hold.

But during those conflicts, the gay ban was a matter of military personnel policy. The 1993 passage of �don�t ask, don�t tell� by Congress made it law.

Still, the number of discharges in 2002 dropped nearly 30 percent to 906, the fewest since 1996.

The Department of Defense answers questions about that by saying, �We have no way of knowing what factors contributed to the decline in discharges in fiscal year 2002, and we cannot predict what future discharge patterns, established by individual behavior, will look like.�

Rudd said there is no central decision made in the Army to reduce gay discharges during times of conflict, adding that the Army discharged 113 gay members in the first quarter of fiscal year 2003.

�Expanded over the year, that would be 452 discharges, which is up from 429 by the Army in fiscal year 2002,� said Rudd.

Servicemembers Legal Defense Network, a Washington group that monitors �don�t ask, don�t tell� and defends gay servicemembers, was scheduled to lead a group to Capitol Hill June 3 to try to convince Congress to repeal �don�t ask, don�t tell�.

Jen says her Pride message to Congress and the Department of Defense is �Change the policy as soon as possible, so people can get the recognition they deserve and stop the horrible inequity.�

 

 

Internet resources for LGBT servicemembers and veterans

"My country gave me medals for killing two men, and a dishonorable discharge for loving one."

--Leonard Matlovich

American Veterans
for Equal Rights

http;//www.glbva.org

The organization is a member-driven group protecting the rights of LGBT veterans and striving to end the current Pentagon policy on gays in the military.

Ohio �Buckeye� Chapter of American Veterans for Equal Rights

http://www.averbuckeyes.org/AVERsite.html

State chapter of AVER serving Ohio.

Gay Veterans Yahoo Group

groups.yahoo.com/group/gay-veterans/

An active E-mail discussion group composed of LGBT veterans.

GLBT Disabled Veterans of America

http://www.geocities.com/Pentagon/1151/enter.html

An organization committed to advocacy on behalf of LGBT veterans using the Veterans� Administration medical system.

Center for the Study of Sexual Minorities in the Military

http://www.gaymilitary.ucsb.edu

A program of the University of California-Santa Barbara, the center does research into the policies of governments around the world relating to gays in the military.

Servicemembers Legal Defense Network

http://www.sldn.org

The largest organization in the nation advocating on behalf of LGBT service members and veterans.

 

 

Go to Discussion Forum Top of Page Go to Discussion Forum Top of Page

 

Top of Page Go Back One Page


© 2002 KWIR Publications
Legal and Privacy Notices

Go to Discussion Forum Top of Page