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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Day of Silence emphasized with photos

Heritage Hill is often occupied by bands, protestors or evangelists, but Friday, it will become Silent Hill.

Residence Life and the UA Pride Alliance will be hosting a joint event on the UA Mall on Friday to mark the National Day of Silence, a day on which students take a vow of silence to symbolize the silence of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual and questioning individuals throughout the world.

Residence Life will be hosting an event modeled after the national No H8 Campaign. The campaign was started by professional photographer Adam Bouska in protest of California’s 2008 ballot initiative Proposition 8, which banned same sex-marriage within the state.

“”I actually have a friend who goes to another university where she and her friends had done a similar photo shoot,”” said Ashley White, a graduate student of higher education and the graduate community director for residence life. “”Seeing the pictures, they took later was really powerful to me, so it made me look at the No H8 campaign website.””

Proponents of Proposition 8 include politicians such as Arizona Senator John McCain and California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, religious organizations like the Catholic Church and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, in addition to the ProtectMarriage.com organization, which spearheaded the movement to include Proposition 8 on California ballots.

“”I support the efforts of the people of California to recognize marriage as a unique institution between a man and a woman, just as we did in my home state of Arizona,”” McCain said in a statement during the 2008 presidential campaign. “”I do not believe judges should be making these decisions.””

Photo shoot participants will paint the words “”No H8″” on their cheeks and cover their mouths with duct tape to address the same issue as the National Day of Silence.

“”The Day of Silence is not what made me want to have the event in the first place,”” White said. “”But it is sort of convenient that the Day of Silence is coming up because that’s exactly what the No H8 shoot is about, the LGBTQ being silenced. Hopefully with holding our event next to the others on the Mall, we can support each other.””

Though the No H8 Campaign is a political movement, White stressed that the event is meant to show solidarity with the UA Pride Alliance, not to target specific legislation.

“”This is not a left-right thing,”” said Hannah Lozon, the ccoordinator of social justice education for Residence Life. “”This is just so that people have a way to voice their opinions, and to do so silently.””

The shoot will begin at 11:38 a.m. on the Mall and conclude at 1:00 p.m. According to White, the start time signifies the 1,138 legal rights afforded to heterosexual married couples but not to homosexuals in the U.S.

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