Biggest local queer news stories of 2011

When you mix queer drama and local politics what do you get? Some pretty interesting news for a city that keeps it weird. […]

Dan Savage Glitter Bombed Again, Responds to Transphobia Accusations

Dan Savage

Gay rights activist and sex columnist Dan Savage, after being glitter bombed at the University of Oregon earlier this month, was yet again showered with sparkles in response to using transphobic language in his Savage Love column and on stage. This story has taken quite a few turns.

The Bilerico first reported the incident on November 14th, an article which Savage blogged, “actively and maliciously misrepresented” his remarks. On November 9th, Savage, who is on a tour of Universities for his upcoming MTV series, was speaking to an audience at the University of California Irvine. On his blog, Savage explains that he was answering a question from an audience member about her boyfriend who, in her words, “likes watching shemale porn.” In his response, Savage was reported to have used to problematic terms, “shemale” and “freaky tranny porn,” while also confirming that yes, the boyfriend in question was a freak. Savage has fired back to the allegations claiming, “I did say ‘shemale.’ I read the question as-written, repeated the term in my response, and then used ‘transsexual’ in place of ‘shemale’…modeling the use of less offensive terms.” He added, “I never used the phrase ‘freaky tranny porn.’ I never said the word ‘tranny’ at UCI at all.”He does admit to calling the boyfriend “a very freaky boy,” but apparently did not mean it negatively as he and his column are “pro-freak.”

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Q Center and SMYRC to Host Youth-Focused Forum: “We Are Here”

This past month, the LGBTQ Community has been shaken to its core with news that 5 young people have committed suicide, suicides that were direct results of sustained, unwarranted bullying and harassment because of their sexual orientation. The public outcry has been great–and admirable–and Q Center and SMYRC (Sexual Minority Youth Resource Center) will sustain this momentum, seizing the opportunity to take tangible action in the wake of these horrific, needless tragedies. As has been said, one suicide is a tragedy. Several is a crisis. The LGBTQ Community must work together–and quickly–to stem the tide.

Last spring, Q Center hosted a community forum that came on the heels of a spate of gay bashings in the Portland area. The community spoke, city officials and community activists listened, and Q Patrol emerged, an organization dedicated to not only patrolling our streets, making them safer, but to pooling the resources available to our community.

While Q Center proudly embraces the “It Gets Better” video series led by Dan Savage and we advocate for inspirational and supportive messages to young people by LGBTQ adults (and we applaud those in our community, like Mayor Sam Adams, among many others, who have already recorded their own videos), we fervently believe that as Oregon’s LGBTQ Community Center, we need to take this inspiration a step further. We want to come together as a community and listen to the stories and experiences of LGBTQ youth in our communities.

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