MAY 201 3

ent Amendm • n io t r o ult on Ab The Assa

ts h g i R r i e Th r e o F p al Privileg ic U p y t g o r u n Ne Standi r Later • a e Y e n O One:


Dear Readers,

6 16 18

I know a guy who has been disowned for being gay; a transgender friend whose gender identity isn’t recognized by the government; a Persian girl who has been told more than once to go back to “her own country”; multiple female friends who have faced sexual assault. And every week I see proposed legislation that endorses it all – legislation that prohibits same-sex marriage, strips the voting rights of the disabled, and tells women that a rape-induced pregnancy is a sign they “enjoyed it.” It all comes from a culture that says that according to democracy, the majority is always right. But that isn’t true democracy. Democracy is about equality and opportunity. If we refuse equality for minorities even when it wouldn’t hurt the majority, are we truly being democratic? The majority of the minorities would tell us we aren’t. This issue is intended to be a megaphone for the minorities – for the disabled, for the LGBTQ community, for women, for religious minorities, and for anyone who has ever had to fight for rights that should apply to all. Happy reading! Carey Hanlin Editor-in-Chief Voices of Those Put Down A Little Church Left Over in the State Viva la Vulva Agriculture - Gag Bill Package Intro Loaded Words

3 4 6 8 10 11

My Neurotypical Privilege 13 Amendment One: One Year Later 14 Gay Rights Around the World 16 Clowns in Congress 18 Revamp Rodgers Road 20 Nuclear North Korea 21

carey hanlin editor-in-chief grace tatter executive editor sarah edwards, troy homesley managing editors sophie bergmann creative director kyle ann sebastian blog and multimedia

jenn nowicki public relations and social
media director

hannah nemer photo editor michael dickson, carey hanlin, troy homesley, wilson hood, jenn nowicki, kyle ann marie sebastian, grace tatter, ina kosova, lily clarke, gayatri surendranathan, sarah edwards, nathan vail, cole wilhelmi, joe calder, samantha mccormick, christopher phompraseut staff writers katie coleman, christopher phompraseut, natalie curnes designers tyler tran, renee sullender, janie sircey, katie coleman, natalie curnes, connelly crowe photographers wilson parker, wilson hood, anne brenneman, michael dickson, nathan vail
copy editors

aaron clayton treasurer

On the Cover: “Standing up, Feet Planted,” by Asia Morris

2  •  MAY 2013

No More Silence:
Voices of Those Put Down
“When my old English teacher used “homosexuality is wrong” as her example for an argumentative paper topic while seeing the only openly gay kid crying in the back while everyone else was agreeing about it with her, I have never had such little fain in humanity.” -James Wright, Charlotte NC

“When I was younger, I was always told I was too big or too chunky from my brother and his friends in the neighborhood. That went on for years until it was the summer before my thirteenth birthday when I made the decision that I wanted to be skinny, to be beautiful. Even when I was struggling at my lowest point in my eating disorder, it still wasn’t good enough for those people who were judging me. The people who didn’t even know me called me the fat anorexic or didn’t believe I had a problem. It took years for me to break apart from trying to please other people, let alone break away from defining myself as the girl with an eating disorder.” -Lindsay Rex, Boone NC

Shifting from a Protestant Christian identity to a religious identity characterized by asking difficult and skeptical questions about the nature of God and religious practice was a relieving change for me. However, when asking pertinent and challenging questions among Christian friends, I was met with a sense of acceptance but wavering judgment. Whereas I felt I was being productive towards understanding myself and who I am, I was made to feel that I was being ignorant, foolish and blindly following the ladder down to Hell by people who portray themselves as servants of their loving lord. -Matt Kasten, Chapel Hill NC

Everyone who was brown after 2001 suffered. I remember when I was younger how much I was bullied, how my little brother was bullied, and how at every turn I was looked at with suspicion and felt isolated in a country that I had been hurt in. As much as I wanted to hurt with the nation, for a long time I was the enemy just for vaguely looking like one. -Swati Rayasam, Chapel Hill NC

I was just arguing with a straight friend the other day after she said “I hope my kid is gay,” which is one of my least favorite things people say on the subject. I told her no one’s child should have to experience their lover’s parents not looking you in the eye. I was pretty unharmed on a daily, personal level in terms of my queerness until my girlfriend’s parents wouldn’t look at me. I wasn’t worth their acknowledgement or their daughter. -Annie Robertson, Yonkers NY •

MAY 2013 


State Government
President Obama at the Sandy Hook interfaith vigil in Newtown, Connecticut.


The Paradox of Religious Politicians


he first amendment of the United States Constitution says “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion.” This seems simple and obvious, almost ludicrous that anyone would challenge it. But the North Carolina General Assembly did just that when they proposed a bill giving North Carolina the right to override the Establishment Clause and declare a state religion. Fortunately, the bill died on the House floor. Religion also weaves its way into politics in less blatant ways. North Carolina’s amendment defining marriage as between one man and one woman is clearly derived from a Christian faith-based ideology, yet it passed and became law, a more subtle form

of establishing religion. It’s clear that North Carolina occupies a deep notch on the Bible belt and continually tries to pull the belt tighter. The problem is also prevalent on the national level. Religion, despite separation of church and state, seeps its way into every election. It’s especially clear while debates of gay marriage and abortion rage on, and many conservative candidates run on platforms rife with religious rhetoric masked under a thin veneer of “tradition” and “family values.” Mitt Romney faced scrutiny for his Mormon faith throughout his campaign. Even more liberal politicians must toe the religious line. Obama had to reaffirm many times that he is not Muslim but Christian—the only

way our President is allowed to be. Though our government is supposedly secular, voters pay a lot of attention to the religious beliefs of candidates. It’s a common assertion that American’s governing bodies, at all levels, should strive to reflect the diversity of those they represent. Indignation rises as C-SPAN pans through a crowd of white men with grey hair calling all the shots. Lack of racial and gender diversity announces itself through telling visuals. Additions of females and racial minorities are considered triumphs because they give voice to a previously silenced population, at least in theory. But what about the kind of diversity that’s even harder to see? As dif-

4  •  MAY 2013

ficult as race is to pin down, there There is a paradox in ideology about could end up deciding where the are even more variants and shades religion in our government. We are government lands. Interestingly, the of religious besupposed to Supreme Court currently has no Protlief. Arguably, keep religion estant members for the first time As a result, nonbereligion also out of gover- history, but the country’s position lief becomes political has a more dinance but our on gay marriage is now completely suicide, and the nonrect impact on governors must in their hands, and no movements religious populations a politician’s be religious to have erupted in protest to that. performance. be elected. When religious ideologies are too of Americans are unTheir religious But should forceful in politics, the government derrepresented in the beliefs inform religious rep- screeches to a halt. People are gengovernment. their ideals and resentation be erally unyielding in their religious sense of jusconsidered at beliefs, and if debates like the gay tice, which in turn influences their all? For the government to be truly marriage one require people to alpolicy-making and voting. Yet, there secular, religious information should ter their religious beliefs, comprois little attempt to diversify religious be irrelevant. But it’s also difficult mise seems impossible. This logic representation in the government. to separate religion and morality. justifies the Establishment cause—a As a result, nonbelief becomes po- People want secular governlitical suicide, and the non-religious to know about ment is a more But if we insist upon populations of Americans are un- their leaders’ efficient govelecting people with derrepresented in the government. religions beernment, makAmericans are becoming increasing- cause they being the country one on where they ly unreligious—one in five Americans lieve it sheds livable for peoare on Sundays, how aren’t affiliated with a religion. This some light on ple of all faiths. can we truly separate year, Congress gained Hindu and Bud- their moral deBut if we insist dhist members for the first time, and cision-making. upon electing church and state? also a Congresswoman who claimed When it comes people with to have no affiliation. Kyrsten Sine- to issues like one eye on ma, a Democrat from Arizona, didn’t gay marriage and abortion, where where they are on Sundays, how can swear in with a Bible. Immediately, opposition is largely faith-based, we truly separate church and state? • news sources warned of the rise of the proportions of certain religions secularism in Congress and applied various secular labels to Sinema. In response, her campaign said, “(Rep. Sinema) believes the terms non-theist, atheist or non-believer are not befitting of her life’s work or personal character.” Atheism, rather than a personal choice or feature of identity, is framed as a slur, an insult to her life’s work. The Hindu and Buddhist politicians did not see fit to issue a similar apology when attention was given to their personal beliefs. This suggests that Americans are not simply bent on having Protestant politicians (though that is the clear preference), but they prefer candidates of any faith over nonbelievers overall. Rick Santorum praying at an Arizona Repulican Party fundraiser in Pheonix. MAY 2013   5   


Viva la Vulva Assault on Abortion


iva la Vulva!” “I am the Master of my Uterus!” These were the signs on the streets of North Dakota on March 25, 2013. Men and women stepped out to protest a bill that would pass on March 26, signed into law by Republican Governor Jack Dalrymple. The North Dakota bill is the nation’s strictest restriction on abortion. It bans abortions at six weeks, when, according to the bill, the heartbeat of the fetus is “detectable.” This, of course, is a quantifiable statement; the fetal heartbeat is detectable at this early stage only if doctors use a transvaginal ultrasound, one of the most advanced ultrasound technologies. Not only do the majority of abortion clinics not employ such technology, many women are not even aware that they are pregnant at six weeks. Arkansas also passed a bill in March, banning abortion after 12 weeks, at which point a heartbeat is detectable with an abdominal ultrasound. North Dakota, though, is adamant about solidifying its position as anti-abortion, with a “Fetal Pain” bill passed on April 12, 2013 in the House and sent to Governor Dalrymple. This bill bans abortions after twenty weeks, at which point, according to the bill’s authors, the fetus is capable of feeling pain. North Dakota is 6  •  MAY 2013

not alone. Since 2011, nine other states constitutionality given the precedent have passed “Fetal Pain” bills, including set by the Supreme Court in Roe v. Idaho, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoman, Wade. In 1973, Roe allowed women the Arkansas, Louisiana, Alabama, Georgia, choice of abortion for up to 24 weeks, and Indiana. at which point the fetus becomes viaThere is no ble outside of the medical eviwomb. According According to the madence to back to the majority jority in the Supreme up the claim in the Supreme that the fetus Court, taking Court, taking away is capable of away a woman’s a woman’s right to feeling pain at right to aborabortion in the first twenty weeks. tion in the first trimester would be a In fact, actrimester would cording to the be a violation of violation of the right American Conthe right to prito privacy assured to gress of Obvacy assured to all citizens under the stetricians and all citizens under Gynecologists, the Fourteenth Fourteenth Amendno scientific Amendment. ment. evidence has Heartbeat laws been discovand Fetal Pain ered strong enough to prove such a bills are in clear violation of the rights hypothesis. A 2005 study in the Journal recognized by Roe. Governor Dalrymple of the American Medical Association recognizes this, describing the heartconcluded that a fetus cannot feel pain beat law as “a legitimate attempt by a until the third trimester. state legislature to discover the boundHowever, it should not be surprising aries of Roe v. Wade.” that many of these bills, under the banWith reference to these “boundarner of pro-life, lack scientific and even ies,” the Supreme Court has been both legal support. The lawmakers drafting vague and contradictory. It sought to these bills must be aware of their un- protect a woman’s rights to her own

Pro-life protesters at the Supreme Court on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade

body, at least in the first trimester of pregnancy, in 1973, and yet has stood by as these rights become, not concrete, but nominal. The scientific, calculated, and efficient undermining of access to safe abortions of women can only be likened to the methodical undermining of the civil rights of African Americans in the Jim Crow era. The thirteenth and fourteenth amendment had been passed by Congress and yet, African Americans had become doomed to a second-class citizenship. This was largely due to such legalized practices

as segregation, poll taxes, and literacy tests. Women today face similar barriers to their right to abortion. Before a woman can obtain an abortion, she must be counseled by her doctor on the alternatives to abortion. If a woman is married, she must notify her husband before the procedure can take place; women under 18 must have parental consent. Women must then wait 24 hours for the procedure to take place following the request. And, before an abortion can take place, in several states women are

forced to intimately interact with the fetus. They must look at an ultrasound and listen to the heartbeat of the fetus before the procedure can be conducted. Even the counseling sessions that women are forced to attend in certain states, like South Dakota and Arizona, are aimed at dissuading women from the procedure, often providing them with flawed information, like the idea that abortion leads to mental illness for the mother. Such restrictive practices have been terribly successful; 70 percent of the nation’s abortion clinics have shut their doors, with only one abortion clinic left in the entire state of Arkansas, Mississippi, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming. It is difficult to determine whether or not the Supreme Court will overturn Roe v. Wade if abortion is taken back to the Court. On the one hand, the majority in all major demographics of the United States recognizes the importance of Roe. According to a Pew Research Center poll conducted in January 2013, 63 percent of individuals polled believe that Roe v. Wade should not be overturned. This number was made up of 48 percent of Republicans, 74 percent of Democrats, 58 percent of Protestants and 55 percent of Catholics. And yet, support for Roe may not be enough. In fact, according the same Pew Research Center Poll, 47 percent of individuals polled answered, “morally wrong” when asked “Is having an abortion morally acceptable?” as opposed to 13 percent who found it “morally acceptable.” The Supreme Court would not be acting in opposition to public opinion were it to further restrict abortion; public support for abortion as a woman’s right is simply not there. •


MAY 2013 


Pigs behind bars at a factory farm.


How North Carolina’s General Assembly Plans to Prevent Transparency

Agriculture-Gag Bill


n 2011, a North Carolina poultry farmworker received what is believed to be the first-ever felony conviction for cruelty to factory-farmed birds. He and four co-workers were tried for animal abuses an activist caught with a hidden camera, while working undercover at Butterball in Mt. Olive, N.C. The abuses included stomping on birds, dragging them by their feathers into small crates, throwing them, kicking them, and letting sores and infections go untreated. The ensuing investigation resulted not only in convictions for the workers caught on tape and a N.C. Department of Agriculture official, but also in pressure on the industry to improve their practices. But if N.C. Senate Bill 648, a bill currently going through the North Carolina General Assembly, had been passed,

that investigation probably couldn’t the inside of an employer’s facilities. In have happened. doing so, it outlaws undercover investiSB 648 is named the N.C. Commerce gation and journalism. Practice Act. It doesn’t mention agriculMercy for Animals, the activist group ture or livestock once, and hasn’t drawn who implemented the investigation the pushback of at Butterball, other Senate bills believes the It’s really about transthis legislative bill is unconstisession. tutional, said parency and folks sayAnd yet, the policy Matt Rice. Rice ing who they are, and falls into the mold is the director what they’re doing, and of investigaof “Ag-Gag” bills what they’re going to that prevent activtions for the ists and journalorganization. do. ists from going He said they’re undercover into working with factory farms, and exposing some of a coalition of ·groups who believe in the unhealthy practices — for animals, freedom of the press and food safety workers, and consumers — within. to work against bills like SB 648 across The first section of the bill forbids the country. anyone from applying for a job in order Mercy for Animals activists use their to take pictures or collect audio from real names and Social Security Num-

8  •  MAY 2013

bers, so they might not be criminalized said. “Modifying them in this way deby this law. But now an employer can flects attention from them.” The North ask activists if are affiliated with an ac- Carolina bill has received far less attivist group. If they say no, the evidence tention than bills in other states, not they collected even gaining would probthe attention of The North Carolina ably be inadmisthe New York bill has received far sible in courts, Times when less attention than Rice said. If they they wrote a bills in other states, were truthful, front-page story they wouldn’t on similar legisnot even gaining the be hired, and lation, days afattention of the New the investigation ter the bill was York Times when they would be imposintroduced in sible. North Carolina’s wrote a front-page But Sen. Brent General Assemstory on similar legisJackson (R-Dupbly. lation, days after the lin), a sponsor of That underbill was introduced in the bill, says the the-radar apbill should be proach might North Carolina’s Gencalled “the transallow the bill to eral Assembly. parency bill.” pass. In Califor“On a scale of nia, a bill like SB one to 10 [of how much it was a fac- 648 has been slammed in almost every tor in the drafting of the bill], Butterball major newspaper, making politicians came in maybe as a two ,” Jackson said. wary. And a similar, less subtle bill in “It’s really about transparency and folks Wyoming was killed after it attracted saying who they are, and what they’re fierce public opposition. doing, and what they’re going to do.” Potter has reported that many of Jackson’s district includes part of Mt. Olive. Duplin County is one of the largest hog producers in the country. The other sponsors of the bill are Wesley Meredith (R-Cumberland), Jim Davis (R-Cherokee, Clay, Graham, Haywood, Jackson, Macon,Swain) and Jerry Tillman (R-Moore, Randolph). Jackson said that section of the bill is also meant to target competitors of North Carolina’s manufacturing hubs in the Research Triangle and Piedmont Triad, who might go into factories and steal best practices. But journalist Will Potter said policymakers might have had other motives for emphasising manufacturing, rather than farming, in the bill. “All of these bills have been met with some pretty fierce opposition,” Potter A pig in a crate at a factory farm.

bills similar to SB 648 take language directly from a mock bill of the American Legislation Exchange Council (ALEC). ALEC is a free-market, conservative organization that has produced the models for legislation like Florida’s Stand Your Ground Laws. Jackson said North Carolina legislators did look at bills in other states as an example for SB 648. “This is a compilation,” he said. “We took what we liked, and trashed what we didn’t.” The language of the North Carolina bill that reflects other state’s examples is about photo and video documentation, mandatory reporting and on alleged false claims on employment applications. So far Jackson said the first part of the bill hasn’t received much pushback. It’s the second part of the bill — about “predatory third party financing” of litigation that has raised the ire of some attorneys. And North Carolinians shouldn’t worry about the first part of the bill, he said. “We want to make sure that our animals are treated fairly.” •

MAY 2013 



Gay Rights

Student Rights


Roger’s Road

Standing Up For their Rights
10  •  MAY 2013

Loaded Words:

How the Words We Choose Affect the UNC Community


MAY 2013 



ake a stroll on the quad any beautiful spring day, and you will pick up on the passing conversations of hundreds of students. But from those threaded words, a few ring out unpleasantly. “My professor’s such a cunt,” “Don’t be a fag,” “That’s so retarded.” I heard these after a few cursory walks through the pit, and left annoyed. How do these words affect us? Do they change our discourse and the way we look at the world? And how can we make the UNC campus a safe place for people who feel targeted by such words? “A lot of it has to come from people understanding what harm this language can do. It’s about just being cognizant that words can indeed be harmful. They shape our discourse, and words shape the way we think about things. Our consciousness is very much restricted by the language we use,” Ellen Crouch said, a junior Mathematics and Gender Studies double major. She went on: “It affects how safe the campus environment feels for certain people. For example, if slurs are used with impunity, then that campus doesn’t feel like a safe space for people who are targeted by those words.”

According to a Wall Street Journal however daunting that might seem. article written by Lera Boroditsky, “ReConscious language, Crouch said, “Imsearch shows us that the languages proves people’s abilities to build power we speak not only reflect or express with each other. It’s sort of like a rising our thoughts, but also shape the very tide that lifts all boats. If everyone gets thoughts we wish to express.” Though on the same level with respect for lanthe article covers the differences in cul- guage you are more easily lifted above ture different languages bring about, the things that keep us divided.” it still hits the heart of the language Negative words build a useless landebate. “It turns out that if you change guage barrier that keep us from resolvhow people talk, that changes how ing other conflicts. When insults, slurs, they think. If people learn another lan- and unintentional odiums are used guage, they inadvertently also learn a “it automatically creates tension benew way of looking at the world. When cause it puts people on a defensive. bilingual people switch from one lan- Words like that have connotations with guage to another, they start thinking violence and vitriol. This language imdifferently, too.” pedes helpful discourse.” On the UNC campus, if we can change With our right to freely use language the way people comes a responsee words and sibility to use lanWith our right to the people who guage in a positive freely use language feel personally and productive comes a responsibil- manner. “Language assaulted by such words, we will is a loaded gun,” ity to use language transform our Crouch said, “and in a positive and campus into a needs to be hanproductive safer and better dled with care.” place. But raising Likewise, Jen manner. the consciousFredette, a senior ness of our camPsychology and pus will have to include everybody, Political Science double major, was co-

president of GLBTSA (now SAGA), and understands the power of language. “In [SAGA] we explain the concept of pronouns and how not everyone wants to use the one they’re assigned. We talk about proper umbrella terms, because not everyone identifies with the word ‘gay’.” Of course, even when people speak the same language, other perceived

barriers such as color, sex, gender, and orientation make an entirely different reality that is difficult for some to be cognizant of. “We would bring race into our intersexuality meetings because people of color experience being gay different than white people do,” Fredette said. So if language is indeed a loaded gun like Crouch said, how do we make sure

the safety is on? “Try to be a good example.” Fredette said, and offered this advice: “Speak up when someone says something offensive. When people don’t hear others speak up, they think everyone in the classroom agrees with them, and it’s very isolating.” Sometimes one word can lift a thousand-pound silence. •

12  •  MAY 2013

talk about what’s happening with one of the most stigmatized and marginalized groups in America? Maybe it’s because we’ve already spoken for them; we’ve already relegated the autistic to a menial job, the teenager with severe ADHD to a life of troublemaking, the dyslexic to a CAREY HANLIN lifelong struggle with the English language. We’ve developed extremely strong preconceived notions of some mythical limit beyond which a person The qualities of being hetero- with a cognitive or developmental sexual, cisgender, white and Christian disability cannot achieve. We claim to all have two common characteristics understand that concepts like gender in our society: and sexuality don’t exist as binaries, 1) Each carries an incredible amount yet we limit neurodiversity to just that of privilege; – to the afflicted and the unafflicted. 2) Each contains a corresponding Of course, that isn’t to say that minority movement that says that it we should act as if cognitive and deisn’t abnormal if you don’t fall into velopmental disorders don’t exist. Or the majority category. that improved treatments for ADHD These moveand Autism Specments are always trum Disorders We claim to undera mixed bag of shouldn’t be stand that concepts sought out. But the typical and the “atypical,” the like gender and I wouldn’t argue privileged and that we should sexuality don’t exist the not. They capever pretend that as binaries, yet we ture media attendifferent races tion and become limit neurodiversity don’t exist either. topics of heated To make believe to just that - to the discussion. afflicted and the un- that everyone is So why aren’t the same does a afflicted. we talking about disservice to the neurotypical privindividuality of all ilege as well? Why don’t we have involved. The point is that as supportheated conversations about the valid- ers of any type of human right, we ity of neurodiversity? Why don’t we cannot afford to persist in believing that there is something so inherently and qualitatively different between the neurotypical and the aneurotypical that we limit what we expect their role in the community to be. To approach it from a more personal perspective, consider a time when you were introduced to someone who seemed maybe “a little off,” but otherwise normal. You might have considered her neurotic or peculiar, but you didn’t treat her any differently than you did your other friends. Then one day, someone tells you that this girl has mild autism. Did you treat her differently? Did you start thinking of her in some measurably different way? Why? Why did the sudden arbitrary addition of a label somehow make her intrinsically different than she was before? Biology rarely works in absolutes, which means that binaries rarely hold true. No ratio of hemispheric volume in the brain can predict a person’s sexuality. No specific threshold number of cortical neural connections separates the autistic from the neurotypical. The term “mentally retarded” has been artificially applied to anyone with an IQ score lower than 70, but there is no gene or pathology or neurological wiring that automatically carries the trait. If intelligence exists on a bell curve, why can’t neurotypicality in general? •


MAY 2013 



One Year Later


artha Lang and Lisa Waleman, a lesbian couple originally from Greensboro, North Carolina, moved to Massachusetts a week after Amendment One passed. “The amendment was passed in May of 2012, but we knew months before that we were going to need to leave the state,” Lang said. The couple, who are now legally married in Massachusetts, are just two of many North Carolinians upset and angry about Amendment One, which was passed by a 61% popular majority and limits the types of domestic unions deemed valid by the state. “It was passed by a majority of the minority — 35% — of North Carolinians who turned out to vote, and it basically made lesbians and gays second-class citizens in the eyes of the law,” said Equality NC Spokeswoman Jen Jones. The language of the bill states: “Mar14  •  MAY 2013

riage between one man and one wom- said the amendment was as yet unan is the only domestic legal union that tested in courts, so its true magnitude shall be valid or could not be recognized in determined. this state.” “The most North Carolina already North Carolina likely way it has legislation defining already had legcould get testmarriage as between islation defining ed is with reone man and one marriage as bespect to benetween one man fits gay couples woman. So what has and one womalready have,” Amendment One done an. So what has Eichner said. to change the atmoAmendment “There are a One done to few municipalisphere of the state? change the atties that extend And how do national mosphere of the domestic partdevelopments in the state? And how ner benefits to field of LGBTQ rights do national desame-sex couvelopments in ples, and they affect North Carolina? the field of LGare the most at BTQ rights affect risk.” North Carolina? These municipalities include Chapel UNC Law Professor Maxine Eichner Hill and Carrboro — as of April 1995, Cha-

pel Hill has defined domestic partner- worse before it gets better. The Supreme Court is currently deliberships as between any two adults who “I think the focus of the repeal needs ating on two cases related to gay marlive together in a long-term relation- to be on domestic violence, adoption, riage and LGBTQ rights, Hollingsworth ship and are financially interdependent. etc. — not gay marriage. That’s where v. Perry and United States v. Windsor. Eichner said people get stuck, The first determines the constitutionshe has heard and they lose ality of Proposition 8, a contentious While we were in North sight of the real, California law that bans gay marriage opponents of LGBTQ rights immediate is- in the state. The Court could uphold the Carolina I know that talk about susues,” Waleman legislation, declare it unconstitutional just by being who we ing the musaid. or simply dismiss the case on procedurwere, we met a lot of nicipalities that A trend towards al grounds — which would render Proppeople who had negaoffer benefits wider acceptance osition 8 unconstitutional by default. At to people in of the impor- any rate, states like North Carolina with tive ideas about gays domestic parttance of LGBTQ their own anti-gay marriage legislation and lesbians,” Lang nerships, but rights has been would be unaffected. said. “By virtue of being it has not hapdocumented in And Eichner said the Windsor case pened yet. She around them, exposing America. A March could potentially strike down the Desaid she guess2013 Washing- fense of Marriage Act, which would them to our love and es the courts ton Post poll mean that if a state began to issue devotion to each other, shows that 58% same-sex marriages, the federal govwould say this I think we changed a recognition is of Americans sup- ernment would recognize them. Again, unconstitutionport same-sex North Carolina would not be affected lot of hearts. al. marriage, up 7% by this case unless it were to legalize It was partly from the year be- same-sex marriage. the issue of benefits — namely health fore. Clearly, change in North Carolina will insurance — that led Lang and Waleman Eichner said models that calculate only come when North Carolinians acto relocate. votes show that when it comes to votes tively demand it. But Supreme Court “We were talking about moving to on LGBTQ rights, there are three data decisions in favor of gay rights will Durham, but as the amendment got points: the year of the election, the per- likely make the issue even less publicly closer to passing we knew that wasn’t centage of voters who go to church reg- controversial, and that combined with an option because I wouldn’t have ularly (which in a new crop of been able to get Martha health insur- North Carolina young voters Despite these gloomy ance,” Waleman said. is much higher each election Lang, whose ancestors are from North than the nationyear suggests figures, Jones said the Carolina, said she struggled with the al average) and that we have freedom to many for decision to move. the percentage reason to be same-sex couples has “It wasn’t an easy, light-hearted de- of voters who hopeful. become a “when” cision to pick up and leave, especially are evangelical “While we because we’re older,” she said. “But I’m Christians (also were in North rather than an “if” prosvery aware that we were lucky to have much higher in Carolina I know pect. that option, which not everyone can af- North Carolina). that just by beford.” Despite these ing who we They now don’t visit North Carolina gloomy figures, Jones said the freedom were, we met a lot of people who had or spend any money in the state as a to marry for same-sex couples has be- negative ideas about gays and lesform of protest, and Waleman said they come a “when” rather than an “if” pros- bians,” Lang said. “By virtue of being would not do so unless the amend- pect. around them, exposing them to our ment were repealed. “The question that remains is how love and devotion to each other, I think She said she is hopeful about a re- much the Supreme Court will acceler- we changed a lot of hearts.” • peal, but believes the situation will get ate that inevitability,” Jones said. MAY 2013 


A Vast Spectrum


TROY HOMESLEY n Saudi Arabia, homosexual acts are LGBT rights are extremely progressive, punishable by the death sentence. the LGBT community still faces threats In Spain and Sweden, amongst other and acts of violence. On April 7th, a Parcountries, same-sex marriage is com- is man was beaten savagely for walkpletely legal. ing arm in arm Advocates of gay with his partner. But even in comparison marriage and gay As the gay to developing counrights argue that rights debate the right to love takes center tries, especially those anyone is a hustage in the of Latin America, the man right. HowUnited States U.S. lags behind in its ever, this simple Supreme Court, statement is by many are lookgay rights legislation. no means a uniing to the U.S. versal sentiment. to be a leader in Gay rights are fiercely debated around human rights. Ironically, as the U.S. inthe world, not only in the U.S. Around stigates war in foreign countries under the world, the gay rights movement the shroud of human rights, Americans spans a vast spectrum. Even in coun- simultaneously fail to ensure those hutries where homosexuality is legal and man rights at home. 16  •  MAY 2013

Many countries other than the U.S. have made massive strides towards accepting and protecting the LGBT community through their legal regimes and court proceedings. Within the United Nations, 94 member-states supported an LGBT rights declaration in the U.N. General Assembly. However, 54 member-states remained opposed to such a declaration and 46 member-states remained apathetic to the proposition. Europe has come to the forefront as a leader in protection of gay rights. Almost all European countries, excluding Italy, have legalized homosexuality, and several have legalized gay marriage outright. But even in comparison to developing countries, especially those of Latin America, the U.S. lags behind in its gay

Gay pride parade in Stockholm.


rights legislation. Countries such as acts are even punishable by death. Brazil, Ecuador, Colombia and Argentina The GlobalPost hosts a “Rainbow Projrecognize the right of gays to enter into ect” in which they investigate the plight marriages or othof the LGBT comer various types munity around As countries and peoof partnerships. the world. Their ple around the world The LGBT comresults are inmunity still faces teresting. Many come to terms with considerable opof their studies homosexuality and the find that the pression in some fact that homosexual countries. In sevLGBT communieral countries, people do exist and will ty faces different homosexuality is levels of oppresalways exist, they are considered illesion depending forced to recognize gal and is either on their sociothe humanity of these rarely enforced economic class. or punishable by Many LGBT people. heavy penalties members comor life imprisonment on their ment. In a few countries, homosexual ability to navigate social circles and

legal regimes with ease when they are part of the elite - but they lament that this privilege is not present for members of lower classes. As countries and people around the world come to terms with homosexuality and the fact that homosexual people do exist and will always exist, they are forced to recognize the humanity of these people. Although legal regimes are slow to change and cultural norms transform even more slowly, some countries have an opportunity to be a leader in the realm of human rights. Whether these countries capitalize on this opportunity will be a question for our generation. •

MAY 2013 


JOE CALDER 18  •  MAY 2013


n 2010, Forbes headlined a story about the illiterate clown who won Congressional offices in a landslide Brazilian election. Unsurprisingly, Americans were genuinely taken aback by Mr. Francisco Everardo Oliveria Silva’s unlikely election. Many Americans, but perhaps not North Carolina residents, who are more than familiar with governmental representatives who seem to be, well, less than erudite. For many out of state students at UNC, the most jarring thing about living in North Carolina has not been the resulting culture shock, social acceptance of the word “y’all,” NASCAR or hushpuppies. No, the most jarring thing about living in North Carolina is undoubtedly being governed by the clowns that call themselves the North Carolina General Assembly. The North Carolina General Assembly has been getting a lot of flak recently, what with a proposal to increase tuition for out of state students 12.3%, on top of a 2.7% increase already passed earlier this year and a 6.2% increase for in-state students, proposals to allow teachers without college degrees to teach core classes at charter schools and, my personal favorite, an elected representative equating Islamic prayer with terrorism. Truly, this has been a groundbreaking two weeks for stupidity, ignorance and down right bigotry on a number of levels. Unfortunately, the General Assembly’s policies have not amplified our own light on a [Chapel] hill. As the ever unbiased News and Observer writes “The university’s reputation has been marred by a series of scandals” that don’t need repeating for UNC students. To say the least, General Assembly policies the seek to increase out of state tuition, and possibly close UNC system schools, only add to the laundry list of issues that have plagued UNC’s reputation for the past year. At least at the end

of the day, despite the scandals, UNC students and administrators could hang their metaphorical hats on the fact that UNC still provided the best education for the dollar in the United States, maybe the world. Yet, the General Assembly seems to ignore what can be boiled down to an all around bad year for the University, and has sought to pile on. Pat McCrory’s budget for 2013 includes a 12.3% tuition increase for out of state students. System President Tom Ross denounced the cuts, speaking at a roundtable sponsored by the UNC-CH Program on Public Life; “we’re asking [our out-of-state students] to subsidize our in-state students, and I think we are running the risk of turning them away.” Essentially, the General Assembly has spoken to the fears of training “New York’s businesspeople” at UNC, but according to Ross, that couldn’t be farther from the truth – out-of-state students often stay in North Carolina, to live and work here (the weather is far nicer too). All of this is completely aside from the fact that out-of-state students contribute to clubs, classes, organizations and athletic teams in ways that far outsize their percentage of the population on campus. From a social, cultural and academic perspective, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill we know and love would not be the same place if it were less accessible to out-of-state students. Perhaps as a further slap in the face to those students who will struggle to make ends meet at UNC under the new series of tuition increases, the McCrory budget has not allocated additional funds for need-based financial aid. In fact, the Progressive Pulse finds that North Carolina investment in need-based financial aid at UNC system schools will drop to 122.6 million dollars in 2013. That is a drop of over 50 million dollars since 2010-2011. The result will be drastic, with estimates finding that

some 10,393 students at system schools will not receive financial aid. Worst of all is the fact that tuition increases would not even go to improving the University’s facilities, student services, faculty payroll, or anything so much as shaded Carolina Blue. Instead, according to Bruce Carney, UNC provost, that money would be funneled into the state general fund. To quote history, the tuition increase is essentially taxation without representation. UNC students are subjected to the arbitrary whims of the General Assembly, and then are not even so much as allowed to benefit from the policies the General Assembly enacts. Yet, perhaps not all is lost in the legislative halls of Raleigh, Representatives Luebke, Glazier, Cotham and Graham have put forth a proposal to the General Assembly that would allow all NC students, regardless of immigration status, to qualify for in-state tuition. Similar legislation has been approved in Maryland, Rhode Island, Oregon and Colorado and twelve other states. From both an economic standpoint and a standpoint of justice, this proposal represents clear strides forward for the state. Not only does this allow for severely under-represented groups in North Carolina to gain access to education, it also increases the volume of skilled workers in North Carolina, a clear attraction for business. Furthermore, by granting instate tuition to undocumented students, they gain access to higher education in a state in which 61% of all jobs will require some college by 2020. So while the general trend from the General Assembly and Governor McCrory sets a precedent that could hurt both diversity of opinion and ethnic diversity at UNC, the In-State Tuition/Some N.C. Immigrant Youth Act, could serve to revitalize those important elements of the UNC community. •

MAY 2013 



a majority of which rely on well water and septic tanks. A 2010 study of eleven wells found that nine of them contained water that failed to meet EPA standards, most likely due to contamination from the landfill. The cost of extending water and sewer utilities to Rogers Road has been estimated to cost $5.8 million, which will be divided between Orange County, Chapel Hill, Hillsborough and Carrboro. Orange County will pay for 46 percent; Chapel Hill 34 percent, Hillsborough 6 percent and Carrboro 14 percent. Carrboro has set aside $900,000 in funds for Rogers Road project, but due to legal concerns requires that their contribution only be spent on projects falling within Carrboro town limits. Estimates do not include the cost of connecting homes to new water and sewer lines, for which the financial responsibility falls to individual homeowners. According to Commissioner Penny Rich, a member of the Historic Rogers Road Neighborhood Task Force, this could cost four to ten thousand dollars per house. This cost is prohibitive for many residents. Task Force member and Rogers Eubanks Neighborhood Association (RENA) Director David Caldwell says previous utility hook up projects were paid for through a community development block grant and RENA hopes to utilize this resource again, although there is some question if a grant would be sufficient to cover the costs of all thirty houses interested in hooking up to the water and sewer lines. One option being discussed is the incorporation of Rogers Road into a sewer district, which would grant them a larger degree of autonomy and allow the community to apply for state and federal funding for infrastructure projects. The task force has discussed handling concerns regarding the community’s technical ability to handle the project by contracting with the Orange Water and Sewer Authority to provide services. While establishing a larger sewer district extending beyond the immediate Rogers Road neighborhood would decrease the cost per capita, it would almost triple the cost of the project to $17 million, says Rich. A decision must also be made about what is to become of the Green Tract. Possible uses include the development of affordable housing and an elementary school, which would alleviate problems of overcrowding at Morris Grove Elementary School in Chapel Hill, according to Caldwell. The Task Force hopes to have its recommendations determined by the end of the summer, in time to deliver its final report to the Board of Commissioners on September 17. The key questions facing the Task Force are “How do we move forward with an interlocal agreement and where is funding coming from?” says Rich. •


013 may finally see the resolution of Rogers Road’s landfill problems. The Orange County Landfill on Eubanks Road has been a point of contention for the Roger’s Road community and Orange County since its establishment in 1972. The presence of the landfill has subjected residents to odor, pests, and water contamination; these problems were exacerbated by the landfill’s expansion from 80 acres to 200 acres in the 1980s. Opposition to the landfill was countered with promises by Chapel Hill officials to provide the community with a recreation center and utility services. These promises have remained unfulfilled, with Chapel Hill, Carrboro, and Orange County only recently taking steps towards meeting their obligations to Rogers Road. The Orange County Board of Commissioners took the first steps last year, voting in February to close the landfill by June 30th 2013, and in March to clean up several illegal dumpsites surrounding the landfill. This year they have set their sights on fulfilling the promises made to the Rogers Road community four decades ago. With $650,000 in funding approved for the construction of a new community center, there still remains the issues of utility extension and use of the Green Tract, land originally intended for the expansion of the landfill. The Rogers Road community is made up of approximately 86 properties, 20  •  MAY 2013


COLE WILHELMI to secure several long-awaited foreign policy objectives. In particular, they’ve stated a desire for a formal peace treaty with South Korea, including guarantees of security and the withdrawal of the 28,000 U.S. troops stationed on the peninsula. But how can Kim achieve these objectives with nothing to offer during negotiations? It seems that in order to regain bargaining power and offer resistance against international pressure, Pyongyang is turning increasingly to nuclear weapons development. With no other leverage available, military armament is a convenient method to capture the attention of the world’s major players, even if it means increasing regional tension. It might be an understatement to say that Kim is just an attention seeker, but at its core, his actions are focused on forcing the United States and South Korea to take them seriously in negotiations. As we continue to deal with North Korea’s erratic behavior, we remember that Kim’s symbolic threats and demands are not new. Since the end of the Korean War, North and South Korea have formally accused each other of over 1.2 million violations of the armistice, and tensions have flared repeatedly in the past. Of course, the U.S. must continue to address North Korea as a real threat to regional security and strive to find diplomatic solutions, but exaggerated media coverage and misunderstanding of Kim’s motives only causes unnecessary panic and rewards North Korea’s belligerent actions. •



n recent months, North Korea has dominated national and international media outlets as its government continue to lash out against South Korea and the United States. Under the leadership of Kim Jong Un, Pyongyang has made it a point to increase regional tensions by repeatedly threatening the U.S. with destruction, declaring invalid the 60-year armistice with South Korea (and declaring war on them shortly thereafter), and, of course, preparing for another round of nuclear missile testing. The response among U.S. policymakers has been mixed: many want a more hardline stance against North Korea’s warmongering; others question Kim’s mental stability. Above all, however, is more than a tinge of anxiety that bellicose rhetoric might escalate into regional war. The true question is whether South Korea, the United States, or the international community at large have to fear a North Korean attack in the short term?

Most likely, the answer is no. Going on conventional political theory, as well as common sense from the North Korean standpoint, Kim Jong Un will not want to inflame tensions to the point of actual warfare. North Korea today is badly struggling to keep pace with its regional neighbors in economic development and human rights. In 2012, Foreign Policy magazine gave North Korea a Failed States Index score of 95.5 out of a possible 120. This places them as the 22nd most failed state in the world -just ahead of Eritrea and Syria. With an extremely poor population, little economic clout and technological development, and political isolation, it is at first difficult to see what North Korea brings to the international table. From North Korea’s perspective, this lack of leverage makes them exceedingly vulnerable to manipulation from the international community and what they call American imperialism. One of North Korea’s biggest goals is

MAY 2013 


Published with support from: Campus Progress, a division of the Center for American Progress. Campus Progress works to help young people — advocates, activists, journalists, artists — make their voices heard on issues that matter. Learn more at
Also paid for in part by student fees.

Campus BluePrint is a non-partisan student publication that aims to provide a forum for open

dialogue on progressive ideals at UNC-Chapel Hill and in the greater community. 22  •  MAY 2013

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful

Master Your Semester with Scribd & The New York Times

Special offer for students: Only $4.99/month.

Master Your Semester with a Special Offer from Scribd & The New York Times

Cancel anytime.