North Carolina Newspapers

    The Carofiruz Qay df LesBicm Association 7{ews(etter
of Student Body Favor Funding; SBP Winner Martin
and Most Student Congress Winners Pro-CGLA
As LAMBDA wentto press, results of ttie SBP
race were announced. Candidate Kevin
Martin won by a marflin of approximately
600 votes.
Student elections on February 16
produced an abnormally large turnout becaus
of a referendum on the funding of the
Carolina Gay & Lesbian Association (CGLA).
Also on the ballot were seven candidates for
Student Body President, six student referen-
dums, candidates for Student Congress, Senior
Class officers. Residence Hall Association &
Carolina Athletic Association presidents.
The referendum concerning funding or
CGLA emerged early last semester when two
Student Congress members,
(District 17) and David McNeill (District 19)
started a petition to place the referendum on
the ballot. In a period of a month or two,
they were able to garner 2,425 signatures,
more than the required ten percent of the
Ttulent body needed to place the referendum
^^CGLA^representatives responded to the
concept of this- petition as being
in its origin and intent. Since no
organization's funding was being questioned,
clC argued that there would be no control
group to determine how students felt about
funding other student organizations. Neither
would the results answer the begging question
of whether students wanted
organization, or even wanted to pay student
Fortunately, such a
much potential for discriminatory decision- ^
malcing (not to mention
non-binding and only a gauge of student
opinion. The UNC Student of
legislative body which determines levels of
funding for student groups with student
activities fees, may choose to ^^nore or
interpret the referendum results as they
intensity on the issue ^"^ned steadily
as dozens of students wrote in t° the E|U
Tar Heel voicing their concern _
blatant discrimination which a t®” ““g
"conservatives" on campus were P®tP®ttat 9-
A few examples: a fraternity on ^
been selling a "Stop AIDS t-shirt, w
Pictured two male figures engaging
sex with the international circled slash over
it, equating AIDS with homosexuality, in the
1987 Football Homecoming Parade, a camp
dorm sponsored a float with "Deacs have AIDS
emblazoned upon it (referring to the Wa)ce
Forest Deacons); organizers of the petition
y^0j-0 telling students that CGLA spent all
their money on social activities to persuade
them to sign; and vandals had obliterated a ^
CGLA bulletin board and painted over a 4'x 6'
CGLA membership announcement with a religious
message in the shape of a cross.
Probably the most damaging example of
slander and misrepresentation against CGLA
occured just two days before the election.
One of the seven candidates for Student Body
President (SBP), Keith Poston, ran an openly
homophobic campaign and promised in campaign
speeches and literature that he would veto
the entire budget if CGLA received one dime
of student fees. On the eve of the election,
Poston distributed a flier which included a
photocopy of a sexually explicit pamphlet on
AIDS risk reduction published by the Lesbian
and Gay Health Project of Durham (LGHP).
Unfortunately, Poston did not document
the pamphlet, but instead implied that
student fees were used to publish the graphic
terminology. He said in the letter, "I have
enclosed a copy of a flier distributed by the
CGLA concerning AIDS. I know you will find
it as disgusting and obscene as I did. We
cannot allow this kind of behavior to be
funded by us anymore."
Although there was little chance for
CGLA to respond, we were fortunate enough to
have a front page news story in the Daily Tar
Heel on the day of the election in which we
the
pointed out the misrepresentations of
Poston's flier. But, for the most part,
damage was already done.
The election results on the referendum
and on the Student Body President election
were fairly indicative of what an emotionally
charged campaign this was. In the end,
supporters of CGLA funding represented 42% of
the vote (2,285 voters) while those who
opposed funding were 58% (3,195 voters). On
the surface it appears that CGLA "lost" the
referendum, but one also has to consider
several factors.
Firstly, we know more about the reason
ing of those who supported funding than those
who opposed it because there was no gauge of
student opinion on other groups' funding. In
fact, another referendum on the ballot
concerning a one-time raise in student fees
narrowly passed, with 2,537 voting against
it.
Secondly, there is the SBP race. Four •
of the seven candidates endorsed CGLA
funding, and two of those were the highest
vote-getters, forcing a run-off between two
(continued on page 5)
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