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Demonstrate, masturbate, separate the church and state

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Chicago's queer community is strong, colorful, active, and political. Pilsen hosted this year's Dyke March which drew  more than 1000 particpants. Howard Brown Health Centers provide a myriad of health and social services for queer individuals and families.  About Face Youth Theater provides professional-quality theater training to queer and allied youth, helping them develop and perform their narrativesCongregation Or Chadash provides a respectful and affirmative home for queer and allied Jews.  Hundreds of other organizations focus on the needs and accomplishments of every facet of the queer community.

With such a large and diverse community, it's no surprise that folks are protesting the recent slew of discriminatory legislation and ballot initiatives. Thousands of queer and allied folks will participate in the Chicago Against Proposition 8 rally tomorrow, November 15, from 12:30 to 3:30 in Federal Plaza at Dearborn and Adams.

Brian Normoyle puts it well:
Last Tuesday a very narrow majority of voters decided to make history again: California is now the first state in the nation to take away a currently existing civil right from a group of citizens. This national embarrassment by way of constitutional amendment is made all the more painful and unjust by the manner in which it was passed: the subjection of individual rights to a popular vote. Really? In America? In California!?
Please join us on Saturday as we fight for human rights!

Arts, Culture, and Pumpkins

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Toothpaste For Dinner
Still need to get into the season? Check out these local events that will up your cultural karma without breaking the bank (even if you're a grad student).

The National Museum of Mexican Art hosts La Vida Sin Fin every Tuesday - Sunday until December 14. On Saturday, November 1, from 6 to 8 PM, the museum will hold a Dia de los Muertos community night. "Remember your lost loved ones on this Day of the Dead and enjoy the exhibition, hot chocolate, day of the dead bread, art making, and more."

Check out the Irish American Heritage Center's Samhain/Day Of The Dead...thinking About Persephone Exhibit. "Samhain/Day of the Dead...thinking about Persephone is a mixed media group show that celebrates the festivals, Samhain and Day of the Dead. Both festivals participate in the birth, death and resurrection cycle. This year's exhibit again includes similar traditions of other cultural groups, including the Greek culture. The art will be presented by sculpture, paintings and installations." This free exhibit is open from 1-4 on Saturdays and Sundays.

Look out for rats at the 12th annual North Halsted Halloween Parade -- this year's highlight is the Rat City float. The parade starts at 7 PM on Belmont & Halsted and continues north to Addison. A costume contest is open to those who register at 5:30 before the event, with mad cash prizes for the most creative.

If you're not familiar with the Japanese film genre of Pinky Violence, Tokyo Gore Police might be the best introduction you could hope for. Facets Cinemateque is playing the film from October 31 to November 6 at 7 and 9:15 for $9.