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The Daily Utah Chronicle

The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

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Pride Week to focus on Don?t Ask, Don?t Tell

By Chris Mumford

The two wars raging in Iraq and Afghanistan and the 15th anniversary of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” will provide the backdrop for this year’s Pride Week at the U, which began Saturday with a dance in the Union.

Lt. Dan Choi, a West Point graduate who served in Iraq and was discharged from the military after revealing that he’s gay, will deliver the Pride Week keynote address tonight.
Choi will also appear at a Hinckley Institute of Politics forum Wednesday to discuss the subject of gays in the military alongside fellow Iraq veteran Jeff Key and Sarah Hjalmarson, a U student majoring in health promotion and education who has served as an Army medic, among other panelists.

Students at the Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Resource Center said they’re excited for all of the week’s events, including the Gay-la and silent auction Thursday night, and a second Pride Week keynote by Depending on the Light author Thea Hillman, who will do a poetry reading early Thursday afternoon.

“It’s kind of a nice event to socialize and get to know people,” said Wyatt Jensen, a sophomore in psychology who participated in last year’s Gay-la.

Jensen also participated in a panel discussion following a screening of the film “The Times of Harvey Milk” on Monday night.

Samora Magadla, a junior in sociology, expressed excitement about Pride Week more than any single event.

“It’s a point and a time to learn about the progress that has been made and continues to be made,” he said.

Nicholas Critchlow, a senior in mass communication and gender studies, has participated in Pride Week for the past three years and said each experience has been profound.
“Pride Week is about so much more than just gay rights or about LGBT rights8212;it’s about celebrating individuals,” Critchlow said.

Other events planned for the week include Queer Voices on Wednesday night, where members of the LGBT community share stories ranging from coming out to experiences with discrimination.

On Friday, students can bring their pets to campus and win a prize at the Pride Pet Show. A full listing of the week’s events can be found on the LGBT center’s website.
“I’m looking forward to connecting with the greater campus,” Magadla said.

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