I wasn’t very involved with the queer community at UNC
my first three years here as a student, even though I have been
interested in LGBTIQ politics since high school. I suppose
I felt unsure I could easily find acceptance and, like so many
first-year students at this giant University, I was intimidated by
established campus groups where everyone seemed to know
one another already.
It has taken until my senior year for me to finally realize how
irrational my fear was - in fact, it contradicts an essential element
of the GLBT-SA mentality. Acceptance of everyone, no matter
which part of the all-inclusive acronym one identifies with, is
what unity is all about. There is no community more diverse,
and it’s hard to imagine another community in which acceptance
of individuality could be more important.
I worked in Los Angeles this summer with the National Center for Lesbian
Rights, a law firm that serves LGBTIQ clients, as well as in a youth shelter for
homeless queer youth. Both jobs were located in a large building called the L.A. Gay
& Lesbian Center. This was my first experience working in an environment where
one was assumed to be non-heterosexual, as opposed to the opposite, which we all
know is the case in nearly every sphere in our society. Living and working in the L.A.
queer community was easily the most rewarding experience of my life, and I was
proud to find that acceptance was simply a given. Sure, the office had a professional
atmosphere akin to any other I’ve worked in, but underneath that was an unspoken
comfort that wrapped itself around everyone in the building. Everyone there was a
part of a movement for social justice, and everyone there was part of a group where
acceptance is the default. One week in that office and I knew that that was the type
of society we all deserve to live in, all the time.
Now that I’ve gotten the chance to work with LAMBDA, I have become better
acquainted with several of the members of our school’s thriving GLBT-SA. Not only
have I been warmly embraced as an ally, I have been rewarded by being a part of an
effective campus community that plans and executes endless events each semester.
The leadership here is strong, the attitude is positive and the younger students are
Coming Out week is here, and the Carolina LGBTIQ community is ready to open
its arms to anyone and everyone. Enjoy the issue.
dbec@email unc. edu
LAMBDA IS UNC-Chapel Hill’s Lesbian-, Gay-, Bisexual-,
Transgender-, Intersex- and Queer-affirming pubucation,
PROVIDING A PROGRESSIVE OUTLET FOR NEWS, ANALYSIS, OPINION AND DIALOGUE.
As SUCH, WE ARE INHERENTLY COMMITTED TO A FEMINIST, ANTI-RACIST AND
HISTORICALLY CONSCIOUS PERSPECTIVE IN PURSUIT OF SOCIAL JUSTICE FOR ALL PEOPLE.
Carolina Union, CB# 5210
Chapel Hill, NC 27514
Office: FPG Student Union 3512D
Editor in Chirf
Mary Beth Kaneklides
LAMBDA is a project of the Gay, Lesbian,
Bisexual, Transgender - Straight Alliance
This publication is funded at least in part by
student fees, which were appropriated and
dispensed by the Student Government at
the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
LAMBDA is printed in Durham, N.C.,
by Triangle Web Printing.