Volume 90, Issue 88

Wednesday, March 12, 1997



Lack of support for film screening draws ire of church

By Kevin Gale
Gazette Staff

The organizer of this weekend's Lilies in Person event is upset about withering support from Western's uwOUT! club.

This weekend will showcase a number of events which centre around the screening of the film Lilies. The film, with a principle theme of homosexuality, is being sponsored by London's Holy Fellowship Metropolitan Community Church.

Rick Brown, the church's co-ordinator of the event, said he wanted to advertise the event on the uwOUT! queer line, an information phone service which promotes uwOUT! events and those relating to the issues of homosexuality.

However, after requesting the ad in late February, he said he was informed March 6 he would not be allowed to use the service. "uwOUT! said they can't advertise a gay-positive event simply because it is by a church," he said. "Philosophically it seems something is askew."

Alexa Duggan, president of uwOUT!, said her executive decided when the request was made not to allow the advertisement to run, but did not tell Brown until March 6 because club activities commanded all their free time. "We chose not to support any religion, so why should we support Christianity. [uwOUT!] is a political club."

Duggan added the line is usually reserved for club members as they pay for maintenance of the line through a discretionary $10 membership fee.

Another problem is because the film is male-oriented, Duggan said it conflicts with a portion of the club's mandate of being active feminists.

Brown added his church was founded over 25 years ago on the basis of promoting acceptance of gays and lesbians and contains a feminist element. "Being a feminist doesn't mean being anti-male," he said.

As part of the event, the film's director, John Greyson, and three of its actors will attend the event, which also includes dinner and a reception with Greyson.

Nonetheless, Duggan said because the event is not political in nature, her club will not allow it to be advertised. "The way it has been advertised and promoted is in a sexual sort of way," she said, adding the amount of promotion for the event with the brochures and posters on campus was enough.

"To me it seems like they're power tripping."

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Copyright The Gazette 1997