TUESDAY, DECEMBER 7, 2004
Local progressive ideas
boost gay rights issues
Aid social justice, area officials say
BY DAN SCHWIND
ASSISTANT CITY EDITOR
Of the six openly gay officials
ever elected to office in North
Carolina, four have been elected in
Chapel Hill or Carrboro.
Although many agree on the
source of the apparent openness
toward gay rights, there is debate on
how progressive the area really is.
“The first victories are usually in
the more progressive areas,” said
Carrboro Mayor Mike Nelson, one
of four openly gay mayors in the
South. “Orange County is certainly
one of the more progressive areas
in the state.”
Former Chapel Hill Town
Council member Joe Herzenberg,
who became the state’s first openly
gay elected official in 1987, also cited
the towns’ liberal reputations.
“I always thought that Chapel
Hill would elect an openly gay offi
cial,” he said. “University towns are
traditionally ... more liberal and
Council member Mark
Kleinschmidt said Chapel Hill’s
history in playing a major role in
activist movements is also key.
“We’ve been at the forefront of
most civil rights movements,” he
said. “Generally, progressive and
liberal people are the first to take
on social justice issues.”
lan Palmquist, executive direc
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tor for Equality NC, echoed the
“Chapel Hill and Carrboro have
had a long history with social jus
tice issues,” he said. “I think they
are a little ahead of the rest of the
state on issues like this.”
Rights for the lesbian, gay, bisex
ual and transgendered community
are recent social issues the area has
At the council’s March 22 meet
ing, Kleinschmidt presented a
petition that would have asked the
state to ignore the 1996 Defense of
Doing so would have allowed the
town to recognize same-sex mar
riages performed legally elsewhere
in the country and provide those
couples with the same benefits
accorded to married couples.
Nelson followed suit, making
a similar petition at the March
25 Carrboro Board of Aldermen
Both petitions were killed quick
ly in the N.C. General Assembly,
but Kleinschmidt said his petition
still has much support locally.
But for all the perceived local
support toward the LGBT commu
nity, some harsh feelings toward
the group still resonate.
“It’s not completely easy,” said
Gloria Faley, former member of
the Chapel Hill-Carrboro Board of
Education. “There are a lot of folks
in this community who are not
happy with us.”
Faley said that during her cam
paign for the school board, she
received a number of anonymous
phone calls and “a lot of nasty
Faley said she is even more wor
ried by the results of the Nov. 2
general election, in which 11 states
approved state constitutional
amendments banning same-sex
“I’m worried about the over
all state of the nation,” she said. “I
worry about people portraying other
people as moral or immoral.”
But Kleinschmidt said that
despite the election results, he
believes the nation has turned the
comer toward a more tolerant view
of the LGBT community.
“This isn’t really backlash,”
he said. “It’s really just half of an
opinion. If you look at the polling
numbers, there’s a lot of support
for civil unions.”
Nelson shared similar views,
pointing out Julia Boseman’s elec
tion as state senator for the tradi
tionally conservative New Hanover
“Once you cross that hurdle, you
can win anywhere,” Nelson said.
“Clearly, we’ve made it over that
Contact the City Editor
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STUDENT STORES r
Joe Pitt, played by sophomore Patrick
Link, and Louis Ironson, played by
freshman David Greenslade, interact
on stage during the last performance of
“Angels in America, Part One: Millennium
Searches continue for 3 deans
BY RACHEL BROCK
Three schools at UNC are in the
midst of searching for new lead
ership, and officials’ efforts to fill
these roles will continue during
The School of Dentistry has
been seeking anew dean since
January when Dean John Stamm
announced his departure.
Provost Robert Shelton said he
now is looking through the com
mittee’s recommendations, which
voiced stronger support for three
of the five candidates.
“Now we just have to choose
between those three,” Shelton said.
“We hope to have an announce
■ Due to a reporting error, the
Dec. 6 article “Grants aid renova
tions” states that the Renewable
Energy Special Projects Committee
has received a $137,500 grant from
the State Energy Office.
UNC has not yet received the
grant; it is being reconsidered for
ANGELS IN AMERICA
Approaches” on Monday night at the
Playmakers Theatre. The production was
sponsored by the student-run Lab! Theatre
in association with the Gay, Lesbian,
Bisexual, Transgender-Straight Alliance.
ment in the new year.”
Stamm, who has served in the
role for 15 years, will step down Dec.
31, but Ken May, associate dean for
administration and planning, will
take the post of interim dean Jan 1.
A search committee charged
with recommending anew dean for
the School of Journalism and Mass
Communication also has examined
applications throughout the semes
ter. Richard Cole, who served as
dean of the school for 26 years, will
resign from the post in June.
“We’re moving ahead very well,”
said Tom James, chairman of the
search committee and dean of the
School of Education.
So far, the committee has looked
Also, due to a source’s mistake,
the same story states that the
group plans to install photovoltaic
panels on the roof of Morrison
It actually plans to install solar
To report corrections, contact Managing Editor
Chris Coletta at email@example.com.
at about 40 applicants, some of
whom hold posts at other universi
ties or are leaders in the journalism
field, James said.
He said the committee will invite
candidates to campus in February.
The School of Public Health also
is coming to the end of its search
process for anew dean. The search
committee recently made recom
mendations to Shelton.
Shelton said he is pleased with
the work of the search committees
for all three schools and is optimistic
that qualified applicants will be cho
sen to fill the leadership positions.
Contact the University Editor
P.O. Box 3257, Chapel Hill, NC 27515
Michelle Jarboe, Editor, 962-4086
Advertising & Business, 962-1163
News, Features, Sports, 962-0245
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