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March 27, 1987 - Image 17

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1987-03-27
This is a tabloid page

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Continued from Page 7
"And when our parents come to
visit, those of us whose parents
can't yet deal with who we are, we
will 'delesbianate' our homes," she
continued. "We put away our
women's books, all the stuff with
the women's symbols, our favorite
clothes. Wesort of disinfect the
place, make it like a hospital room.
We put away all the loving women
things, all the love.
"People say if we come out we
will lose our families, our jobs,"
Loulan said. "But if we can't be
honest, in a sense we've already
lost them."
crosses her long legs
and leans back in an old
chair in her cluttered
apartment on the north
side of campus. Her roommate and
lover, Jackie Sauriol, sits on the
floor near her, munching on snacks.
Hopwood, an LSA senior, and
Sauriol, an Arts School senior, will
be married next October.
It won't be a civil ceremony
because gay men and lesbians are
forbidden by law to marry. Hop-
wood and Sauriol plan a private
ceremony with friends.
"It will be a wedding in the true
sense, a union of two people who
fell in love and are better for it,"
says Hopwood, fingering her short
brown hair.
Sauriol knows the idea of two
women marrying may stike some
as strange, but to her it's perfectly
natural. "Just like any like any two

people who are in love, we want to
set aside a day to celebrate that love
'cause it's so amazing."
"We don't have any traditions,
any stereotypes of lesbian marriages
to go by," Sauriol says. Their plan
to rent a hall for the ceremony and
ask their friends to help out.
Hopwood's sister, a concert violin-
ist, will play, and the couple's
friend Rob will read his poetry.
"We're gonna invite people to
witness our love, and then we're
gonna throw the biggest party we
can," says Hopwood, smiling.
"If you told me two years ago I'd
wed a woman, I'd never have
agreed," Sauriol beamed. "But now,
it's so wonderful."
The two women met last winter
term in a Gay Studies class in the
University's Pilot Program, and
have been together for nearly a year.
Together, they have discovered a
somewhat hidden but long-
established gay sub-culture.
"You can find books on
sexuality that were written by and
for gay men and lesbians. There are
gay travel guides, gay newspapers,
gay 'yellow pages' books, and
available gay legal help," Hopwood
"Most importantly, there are gay
histories - not invented stories,
but real historical facts that have
been buried by white male
heterosexual traditions," she
continues. "There's plenty of liter-
ature about women loving women
all through history and stuff about
gay men, too."
Hopwood and Sauriol say they
find support in a strong Ann Arbor
lesbian community. They attend
dances, meetings, and performances
organized by area lesbian groups.
"And love, love is a great
support," Hopwood adds.

house for information
on campus gays is the
University's Lesbian
and Gay Male Programs
Office in the Michigan Union.
Started in 1971, the office received
4,000 calls and visits from
community members last year
Sitting next to the office's "hot-
line" red phone is Bill Wehrle, a
graduate student in public policy.
Wehrle, an office volunteer and gay
activist, is hopeful that the har-
assment gays often experience on
campus and his hope for change in
the future.
Often, the most subtle form of
harassment gays experience is the
frequent and socially accepted "fag-
got" joke, according to Wehrle. The
growing epidemic of AIDS
(Acquired Immune Deficiency
Syndrome), responsible for the
deaths of thousands of Americans,
has given some jokers new
"Jokes about AIDS - which are
never funny - and related graffiti
are all over campus. Students,
professors, even doctors in the
University Hospital have been heard
making light of the disease and its
sufferers," he said, adding that one
of his professors tells AIDS jokes
in class.
"It pisses me off when I go to
econ lecture and I can't even get an
econ lecture," he says. "I've got to
listen to these awful haragues, and
sitting around me are all these
people who will someday be
responsible for making government
policies, laughing at every one of
Through his own openness,
Wehrle tries to change such atti-
tudes. "When people think of gays,

they let their stereotypes guide their
ignorance. I want people to see
something else - a graduate
student who wants to develop
public policy on Capitol Hill, who
wants to live a good life, and who
happens to be gay."
Wehrle and some friends have
organized a core group of gays and
lesbians which is planning a series
of demonstrations. Last week,
Wehrle and the group met with
University President Harold Shapiro
to ask for improved funding for
their office and more educational
programming on gay issues. As
yet, they have received no reply.
Lesbian and Gay Rights On
Campus (LaGROC) plans to rally
on the Diag on Thursday, April 2
and sponsor a "Blue Jeans Day"
April 3. Students will be asked to
support gay rights by wearing blue
jeans on that day.
"I think the biggest accom-
plishment of our political activity
is just being visible and making it
possible for people to see gays who
don't fit any stereotypes," said
Wehrle. "We're just a bunch of
normal college students trying to
live happy lives."
Don't forget
pick up
Michigan Daily

VOLUME 5, NO. 21

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2nd 3rd
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This Week at
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Mar. 27-28 Tracy Lee & The
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TUES: $3 Labatts Pitchers
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