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Denton is in need of more LGBTQ spaces

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Denton has no designated space for the LGBTQ community, leaving people unable to let themselves shine in a safe space.

If we want Denton to continue to grow into a thriving, fun, artsy and inclusive college town that we all know and love, we need to create more spaces for the LGBTQ community.

Denton has had only two LGBTQ spaces in the past, but both have closed down. Mable Peabody’s was Denton’s only openly gay bar that opened up in 1979. In 2008, the bar became a victim of a hate crime, and was robbed, vandalized and burned down. However, Mable Peabody’s didn’t let that stop them and opened up again at a new location the following year. The new location offered twice as much room and brought in many members of the LGBTQ community to dance and have fun. In 2017, Mable Peabody’s closed down with no official reason being stated.

After Mable Peabody’s closed down, a new space for the LGBTQ community opened up taking its place.

Q’s Cafe opened up in 2018, offering a safe space for the community with coffee, drag shows, trivia nights and more. The warm brick walls, soft lighting and cozy couches created a welcoming environment for people to come hang and be themselves.

Unfortunately, Q’s Cafe did not last very long and closed earlier this year, once again leaving the Denton LGBTQ community empty handed. This could have been due to the poor location of the cafe, nestled in a secluded corner on the Square, that unfortunately couldn’t bring in enough customers.

Though there is now no designated spot for the LGBTQ community in Denton, we can still take advantage of the LGBTQ events and other resources that Denton offers in the meantime. Andy’s Bar on the Square features Glitterbomb, a queer variety show, every Thursday night. Drag shows have also been held sporadically at several other Denton businesses such as Crossroads Bar, Golden Boy Coffee and Riprocks Bar and Grill. Resources in Denton for the LGBTQ community include OUTreach Denton and GLAD on UNT campus as well as the UNT Pride Alliance.

Even with these events and resources, Denton is still in dire need of a designated space specifically for the LGBTQ community. Since the LGBTQ community has to live in a predominately straight and cis society, they can often feel left out and don’t have a place to call their own. With many members of the LGBTQ community struggling with depression, anxiety and feelings of unacceptance by their peers, a safe space dedicated to normalize the LGBTQ community would help tremendously.

In order for more LGBTQ spaces to open, we need to make our voices heard. By participating in every LGBTQ/Pride event in Denton, talking about it on social media and supporting Denton’s LGBTQ organizations, we can make demands for a successful LGBTQ space known.

With the LGBTQ community constantly growing and members demanding progress in this country, Denton needs to start doing their part. Just like how Mable Peabody’s refused to let a hate crime stop them, we will refuse to let the closings of Denton’s beloved LGBTQ spaces stop us.

Featured Illustration: Jae-Eun Suh

Article Originally Published by on North Texas Daily

Source: North Texas Daily

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