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00:00:00 - Safe Zone Training and LGBTQ+ Events in WNC

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Partial Transcript: MC: And so, it ended up backfiring and so

we... I don't know if that was at Shippensburg, or was at IUP or what, but at

Western, we were like, No, we want the sticker to mean something that they

actually went through some training. And so, there was a real concerted effort

for that. And then the vision was that there would not be just the basic

training, but eventually, they would have a recertification. So in order to keep

your sticker or somehow you would get a punch that it was... So that we wanted

to somehow have a mechanism to protect so that you would get recertified or...

But I don't even know if that ever materialized. But the vision was to keep

people really invested in staying committed to being educated.MC: I think it's

interesting right now I'm looking at, I mean, what's happening in Sylva now with

the Black Lives Matter and the whole statue and having the Pride Picnic, which

was so cool, and I think this Saturday, I think tonight is a Drag show with Lazy

Hiker, and the family friendly drag show that's going to be on the Pride Fest in


Keywords: BLM; Franklin; LGBTQ+ History; Pride Fest; Safe Zone; Shippensburg

00:00:04 - Introduction and Beginning Michelle's Story 00:02:30 - Working in Safe Zone and WNC Counseling

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Partial Transcript: Well, I have always... My professional career, most of it, was in collegiate

mental health. So, I was a counseling center psychologist in every university

that I've been a part of. Even back in my graduate school training, I'd always

been involved in social justice and, gosh, even as an undergrad, creating safety

for those of us that have been marginalized or unheard. And so, whether it was

as an undergrad, or as a master's student at Penn State, or going out for my

doctorate in Massachusetts, and then working professionally at the school that I

was at prior to coming to Western, I was always involved in doing what I call

bridge work with diversity related issues. And I was part of the women's

community in the LGBTQ community at my previous institution, and we're doing

things with multicultural affairs there.

Keywords: Counseling; HR; Out In The Mountains; Safe Zone; WNC; Work Training

00:16:44 - Sylva Herald, Marriage Equality in North Carolina, and Christian Influence

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Partial Transcript: Well, we had our service. And the cool thing was, is we had our commitment

ceremony at St. David's. And we had to call it a blessing, because they weren't

allowed to call it a marriage because of where things were back then. And that

was on 6/7/8, June 7th, 2008. And so, we almost... We weren't able to get

married like we said, 6/7/8. Okay, well then let's get legally married on

9/10/11. But it didn't quite work out that way. And it wasn't 10/11/12. But it

was, I think, 10/13/14. So, it was sort of there, but not really. But anyway.

But yeah, so now we're legally hitched, and we were the...

Keywords: Acceptance; Christianity; Equality; Equality Foundation; Franklin; Marriage; Sylva Herald

00:29:37 - Organizations with Safe Zone and Cleve Jones

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Partial Transcript: I think there was talk of that. But in

the counseling center, once when we were running the Safe Zone program and

making it happen, then there was this transition when the Safe Zone program

became its own organization. [Stephanie Hezbachar 00:35:37] would be a good

person to interview, and I could probably find her on Facebook, because she was

one of the first Safe Zone coordinators, and believe it or not, she had been an

undergrad at Shippensburg, and went for her master's and got her master's here.

Keywords: AIDS Quilt; Cleve Jones; Family Circle; Knoxville; SAIL; Safe Zone

00:40:21 - Claire Eye, Daniel Karslake, and Radicals in Asheville

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Partial Transcript: And so, there was a concern that

there was going to be a huge thing. And there wasn't, and if anything that it

really backfired because the Laramie Project was probably much better attended

than it ever could have been. When they did the show, it really created, I

think, some cognitive dissonance for a lot of the faith-based student

organizations because they couldn't imagine that... Because here's this group

saying they're Christians, and then advocating for people to be killed because

of who they are, like that Matthew Shepherd's death was the right thing to do.

And so, it created this really big cognitive. So, a lot of the faith-based

organizations were really grappling with that in a way that I think was

unexpected, but welcomed. And yeah, but it was a non-issue. But that was an

interesting part of Western's history that you would have...

Keywords: Asheville; Christianity; Claire Eye; Daniel Karslake; Radicals; WNC

00:49:06 - Experience with Teachers and Schooling in WNC

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Partial Transcript: Well, she'll tell her story side of the story now if you choose

to interview her, but my side of the story was that she was super excited to get

out of school, but nervous about talking to the college students.MC :I just

remember, this is a proud mama moment where it was over in the final performing

arts building, where they have those rooms that have... It's like an auditorium

style room, but they have large classes because this class was super big. And

so, we were sitting in the front and had the panel, and I just remember her and

she was in high school and she's like, "You have to think. Now, think about

this. When you say that's so gay, you're putting down my mom. You're putting

down... Now, that is just not cool. You just don't use that language, just think

about it. Use something else." She was just dicing these college students. But

it's like, they're like, "Wait a minute, you're normal."MC: It was somehow it

seemed like it was going to be not okay to have same sex parents. But just to

know that and that was interesting just because when I was in relationship with

a woman and my kids were in elementary school, I made sure that I came out to

all of my kids' teachers.

Keywords: College; Same-Sex Parents; Teaching; WNC

00:53:22 - Safe Zone Training and Events in WNC

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Partial Transcript: So, it's like... Or wait, knowledge, values. I

can't... There was always things about knowledge and the history and then what

an ally is, so there was a huge thing that was... It was really basic. It was

like how to be an ally one-on-one, just definition of terms and that always had

to be updated because they're just... And then we came up with all kinds of

trying to do card sports and matching games because we just kept finding more

terms, and symbols, and history. Just snapshots of, of LGBT history, and people

that are famous that are... A lot of trying to deconstruct the stigma, and then

there was always something on the facts of where does this come from?

Keywords: BLM; Franklin; LGBTQ+ History; Pride Parade; Shippensburg