LGBTA Hosts 'Out' Rally

Students gathered in the Price Center on Monday to kick off UCSD’s “”Out and Proud Week.””

Students stepped up to speak during an open microphone session, addressing the need for acceptance of the homosexual, bisexual and transgender community.

The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Resource Office is sponsoring the events this week.

Marshall senior David Kim expressed the dual purposes of the week’s events.

“”The ‘Out and Proud Week’ is not only a time for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Association to express their experience with coming out, but also for straight people who aren’t so narrow-minded to speak up in situations when their peers say things that are homophobic and to not let things slide,”” Kim said.

Kim classified these people as “”straight but not narrow.””

Muir sophomore Tomas Bogardus echoed Kim’s sentiments about the need for increased acceptance and love on the part of the heterosexual community.

“”Passive acceptance is no longer sufficient,”” Bogardus said. “”It’s our responsibility to actively challenge our preconceptions and prejudices, however latent, and become a community.””

Promoters of the “”Out and Proud Week”” wanted to stress that the events are for everyone.

Principal member of the LGBTA Erin Harvell addressed this issue.

“”It’s not about ‘Let’s be queer week,'”” Harvell said. “”It’s about, ‘Let’s be aware. Let’s be understanding. Let’s be considerate.’ No one wants to take over the world. They just want to be a part of it.””

Muir junior Mikey Kaufmann concurred with Harvell.

“”We’re trying to bring the campus together to talk about diverse issues that affect everyone,”” he said.

The rally also hosted alternative rock band Water Gypsies.

The band played two sets at the Price Center, singing about a variety of issues including the mistreatment of homosexuals.

In one song about hate crimes against homosexuals, the group cried out, “”When will this be enough?””

Other events during the week included a screening of two films on Monday night at the Price Center Theater.

At 7 p.m. Monday the LGBTA sponsored a showing of the documentary “”A Boy Named Sue,”” by Julie Wyman.

The film is about a woman who undergoes a sex-change operation and his experience in the world.

The night also featured a short film by Bill Basquin titled “”The Ride.””

There was also a panel of UCSD professors fielding questions from the audience.

Saturday will mark the second annual queer youth conference, themed “”Generation Q: Building Solidarity Through Diversity,”” presented by the Queer People of Color at UCSD.

The conference runs from 10:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. with a special film screening from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

The bi-quarterly LGBTA dance at Porter’s Pub will be from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m.

All events are free and open to people of all orientations.

Promoters of the dance expect a large turnout.

Students can register for the conference online at http://www.flamingart.com, a Web site highlighting the work of Scott David Heath.

The rally was perceived as a success, although some students were concerned with the lack of support and the low number of people in attendance.

Newly appointed Campus Organizing Director for the A.S. External Office Alicia Schwartz said, “”I’d like to see more involvement and less apathy, more allies, more people joining the struggle for solidarity.””

The LGBTA holds its general meetings at 7 p.m. on Mondays in the Graduate Student Association Lounge on the first floor of the Student Center.

Students of all orientations are welcome to attend the meetings.

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