Visionary leaders honored by WRAP

By BTL Staff

ANN ARBOR - The Ann Arbor LGBT community joined together Nov. 12 to celebrate local leaders and to remember the victims of hate crimes in Michigan in 2004. Coming just a week after the elections, many at the Kerrytown Concert House event were still reeling from the passage of Proposal 2 and the reelection of George Bush to the Presidency.

"I didn't know if this was going to be a party or a funeral," said State Rep. Chris Kolb (D-Ann Arbor), one of the evening's honorees.

But a party it was, as almost 100 people came out to honor Kolb, State Sen. Liz Brater (D-Ann Arbor) and Julie Steiner, executive director of the Interfaith Hospitality Network.

"It's really important that you take care of yourselves now," said Brater. "We need you to be strong so you are able to fight for your country."

"You can't just pull the covers over your head for the next four years, and hope the boogey man doesn't come get you," said Kolb. "We all have to keep working to bring people into the light, and to teach Michigan what the Ann Arbor community already knows." Kolb was referring to the strong support for John Kerry in the Ann Arbor area, and to the resounding defeat of Proposal 2 in Washtenaw County.

This second annual event was sponsored by Washtenaw Rainbow Action Network. Food and beverages were donated by aut Bar, and the Phoenix Ensemble provided entertainment.

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