Thursday, February 20, 2020

'Residents of Minnesota town threaten lawsuit over school LGBTQ pride flag' & other Fri midday news briefs

Marshall residents threaten to sue over school's LGBTQ pride flag - Oh come on! It's just a flag! In reality, the article underscores what we have to deal with when it comes to people's fears and how the anti-LGBTQ industry exploits these fears.

Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear Makes History By Attending LGBTQ Rally At Capitol - THIS is big.

Students thought their Mormon university was OK with gay people for a second. Oops. - Don't give up. Keep pushing and you will change the world for the better. 

Indonesian bill calls for LGBTI people to report for “rehabilitation” - Oh good grief!

Trump wants to give religious conservative groups the ability to steal tax dollars while not being truthful to taxpayers

Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council (left) and Donald Trump (middle) think religious liberty means receiving federal funds while discriminating against taxpayers and then not showing common courtesy to those they are taking the money from.

If you want yet another example of how religious right groups distort and weaponize religion as a tool for discrimination, look no further than yet another Trump Administration proposal geared to reward conservative evangelicals for their support at the expense of other Americans.

But allow me to take a different approach. First, I am going to post what the Family Research Council's president Tony Perkins says about it:

Senators Patty Murray (D-Wash.) and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) must really miss the days of Barack Obama, when faith-based groups were treated like second-class citizens when it came to government programs. Every time a member of the president's team rolls back a rule and levels the playing field, the northwest Democrats kick and scream. For people who talk about equality so much, Senate liberals sure don't understand it.

Nothing really sums up the Left better than the first line of their protest letter to Secretary Alex Azar. "We write to strongly oppose the Department of Health and Human Services' proposed rule, 'Ensuring Equal Treatment of Faith-Based Organizations." In other words, what they support is the unequal treatment of faith-based organizations -- something the last administration had become quite good at. The pair of senators tries to argue that Trump's policy reinstating religious freedom is actually a secret attack on it -- a suggestion that would be funny if it weren't so outrageous. 
"The proposed rule -- developed under the guise of religious liberty -- is actually... yet another step taken by President Trump to greenlight federally-funded discrimination," their letter claims. No one is quite sure how, since the whole point of the regulation is to make sure every organization -- religious or not -- is treated the same. What Obama's team liked to do was burden religious groups with special reporting or referral requirements, creating ridiculous hoops that no secular organization had to jump through. Of course, the idea was to persuade faith-based groups it was too much trouble -- or worse, too steep a compromise, to comply. 
The new rule, just posted last month, guarantees that every qualified government organization has a seat at the table -- no matter what they believe. It appears by the words of Murray and Wyden not everyone believes in that kind of neutrality. They want religious groups to be disqualified from any government interaction before it starts! "We demand the Department put the American people first and withdraw the proposed rule," they write. But putting the American people first means engaging all of the diverse options for health care, education, adoption, and disaster relief. If the Trump administration listened to those on the Left, it would be jeopardizing billions of dollars in social services.

It's interesting how Perkins is deliberately vague about this rule. I doubt this is accidental.

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

'Parents suing school district over policy protecting trans children' & other Thur midday news briefs

Christian parents sue their school district to force it to out trans kids - I do not support this at all. There is no telling how much danger the child could be exposed to because some parents could get violent. That's just reality.

Criticized for being too gay and not gay enough, Buttigieg has unique burden -It's a mess and it's really not his fault.

U.S. medical schools boost LGBTQ students, doctor training - Excellent idea. 

States across U.S. still cling to outdated gay marriage bans - They are trying so hard to be "extra."

Gay Trump ally set to be rewarded for 'kissing up beyond the call of duty'

Richard Grenell

You know, it's rather cute how so many of us in the LGBTQ community are going back and forth with regards to Pete Buttigieg, with some of us determined to wreck him for being a supposed Republican in "sheep's clothing." However, our intense discussions about Buttigieg simply underscores how yet again we ignore those in our "family" who truly deserve our venom.

From Raw Story:

On Wednesday, The New York Times reported that President Donald Trump intends to tap Richard Grenell as acting Director of National Intelligence. Grenell, who currently serves as the U.S. Ambassador to Germany and would be the first openly gay man to serve in Trump’s cabinet, is a hard-right partisan and a loyalist to the president — a sharp contrast from Dan Coats, who was ousted from ODNI last year over disagreements with Trump.

In his current role, he caused an uproar in Germany after he threatened to use his office to help far-right political parties win elections in Europe — a flagrant departure from the apolitical conduct U.S. ambassadors are generally expected to follow abroad.

Aside from that, Grenell has been seen by many as an awful diplomat, even to the point of German officials suggesting that he be expelled after he expressed support for right-wing groups. News of his possible appointment have already garnered shock and disappointment. Grenell is seen as an extreme Trump loyalist, even to the point of accusing presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg of lying when Buttigieg called out VP Mike Pence's many instance of homophobia.

Grenell has also led the Trump Administration's announced endeavor of  decriminalizing homosexuality on a worldwide scale. I say "announced" because as far as it is known, nothing has been accomplished.  As a matter of fact, the day after the plan was announced, Trump seemed not to know anything about it.

But regardless of all of this, I'm sure Grenell is patting himself on the back due to his success. And  counting on the rest of us to focus more on our tug of war regarding Buttigieg while he climbs the ladder of butt-kissing success. Rung by rung.

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

'Virginia moves closer to banning 'ex-gay therapy' for minors' & other Wed midday news briefs

Stop lying, Family Research Council. Gays had nothing to do with the Boy Scouts declaring bankruptcy.

The Boy Scouts of America have declared bankruptcy and the Family Research Council wants to blame gays for it.

On Tuesday morning, when I read that the Boy Scouts had declared bankruptcy, I knew it would be a short matter of time before a religious right group would attempt to blame gays. I should have placed a bet on it, including the name of the group who would probably be first with the nonsense - The Family Research Council:

It's one of the saddest, most predictable "I-told-you-so" moments of our generation. The Boy Scouts, where future moon walkers and presidents learned the virtues and value of leadership, has finally collapsed. Turns out, the decade of compromise hasn't been kind to the Scouts, who turned in their moral compass seven years ago to chase the approval of critics it could never win. Now, deep into the BSA's self-imposed identity crisis, the group is filing for bankruptcy -- an unhappy ending we all warned was coming. 
For those who knew the Scouts through their proud and honorable days, the demise has been slow and painful. But this is what comes of throwing up your hands on a century of conviction: irrelevance and, ultimately, insolvency. For 103 of its 110 years, the Boy Scouts were a pillar of principle -- not that it was easy. As most of us know, the fight to live out your beliefs in this world can be an exhausting one. The Scouts spent years in court just for the freedom to stick to their moral code. They won -- but to the organization's dismay -- the battle didn't end. Waves of LGBT activists kept coming. The pressure built and built until finally, in 2013, under the leadership of Rex Tillerson, headquarters gave into the lie that compromise would be their salvation. Seven years later, the irony is: there's nothing left to save. 
More than a half-decade into this radical experiment, the group that counted Martin Luther King, Jr., George W. Bush, and Buzz Aldrin as members is barely recognizable. A handful of local councils have managed to squeak by on solid reputations, but after the organization opened its arms to kids and leaders who identify as gay or transgender, membership became anemic. Then in a failed effort to fill the ranks they began recruiting girls, which not only angered its base -- but pitted the organization in a legal war with Girl Scouts USA. Now, a program that used to be America's finest, is knee-deep in Chapter 11. 
If you're wondering where raising a white flag on core values leads, this is it. The Scouts are a case study in moral compromise -- the story of anyone who exchanges the truth for cowardly conformism. Leaders at the BSA dropped their moral mandate to accommodate what they don't believe. In the current climate, that's called "inclusion." To everyone else, it's considered betrayal.

Like so many other times when FRC and its president Tony Perkins choose to make comments about social issues - particularly regarding the LGBTQ community - they are telling a pack of lies.

 Or in this case, one huge lie.

The Boy Scouts are not declaring bankruptcy because of any "attempt to compromise its values." Nor is the organization declaring bankruptcy because of the 2013 decision to allow gays to openly join or allowing girls to join.

The Boy Scouts declared bankruptcy because of a multitude of lawsuits regarding child sex abuse allegations which go back decades to the 1940s and maybe even before then. And of course, none of this has anything to do with women or the LGBTQ community.

Monday, February 17, 2020

'NJ lawmaker still throwing tantrum over LGBTQ-inclusive curriculum' & other Tue midday news briefs

Some people want to pretend that the LGBTQ community made no historical contributions.

N.J. should pay for kids to switch schools over ‘harmful’ curriculum, lawmaker says - Get over yourself my friend. The curriculum is not harmful.

Buttigieg Responds To Limbaugh’s Homophobic Remarks: ‘I’m Proud Of My Marriage’ - Good for Buttigieg for taking the high road against Limbaugh. 

Conservative proposes adding sexual orientation to marriage licenses & punishing liars - Some lawmakers seem to think that it's their job to think of new ways to screw with the LGBTQ community. 

Trump health official defends relying on faith groups to fight HIV/AIDS - Definitely depends on the faith groups.

NBC article spotlights unfairness of Tenn anti-LGBTQ adoption law

An recent NBC article looked at Tennessee's recently passed bill which would allow private adoption and foster care agencies to receive taxpayer dollars while discriminating against the LBTQ community.

It's probably the most thorough look at the law and efforts to pass laws like it in other states. One thing it does is call out misconceptions about how such bills created to ensure that children are placed into good homes:

LGBTQ advocates argue that adoption laws like the one Tennessee just passed are part of a larger conservative movement to roll back hard-won protections for the community. Those who champion such laws say they protect the first amendment rights of faith-based organizations and individuals, and prevent them from being forced to shut their doors rather than violate their beliefs. 
In fact, Catholic Charities USA, which operates foster and adoption agencies across the United States, ceased adoption services in San Francisco, Washington, Boston and Buffalo, New York, rather than abide by their state and local antidiscrimination laws, and in 2011, it lost a contract with Illinois over the organization’s policy of refusing to place kids with same-sex couples.

. . .While some organizations, like Catholic Charities, have stopped foster and adoption services rather than comply with state and local antidiscrimination laws, other agencies have taken over services in those places. An amicus brief filed by 17 states and the District of Columbia in support of prohibiting discrimination in the foster care system cited data that found Boston and D.C. saw no decrease in adoption and foster placements as a result of Catholic Charities ending its services in those cities.

Thursday, February 13, 2020

Video: There is NO 'gay agenda' to destroy the black family. So stop saying that nonsense!

 I keep hearing the tired complaint by some progressives and liberals about a fear of the LGBTQ community being "whitewashed," or "assimilated" into society. Personally, I think it's a load of bullshit, but I have an idea for those complaining. Why not elevate diverse LGBTQ voices into the mainstream.Such as the voices in the above video.  These are nine gay men of color shattering the myths that being gay is somehow in conflict to being black and that there is a so-called agenda by gays to destroy the black family. This should be required viewing for many LGBTQs who aren't people of color. And on that same note, it should be required viewing for many African-Americans who aren't LGBTQ. Rarely do we get our turn to speak when it comes to black issues. Our voices are either ignored or deliberately stifled by other black folks.

'Facing reelection, Trump expands his anti-LGBTQ agenda' & other Thur midday news briefs

Facing Reelection, Trump Expands His Anti-LGBTQ Agenda -  Gee, if only some of us could act against this with as much fervor as we act against one of our own for "not being the right type." Just saying.

Unprecedented progress, incredible backlash for LGBTQ equality over last decade: report - Yep. No struggle, no progress. 

Canada's first dedicated LGBTQ gym to close after being targeted by far-right group - well this sucks! 

Lesbian files discrimination complaint against DC Burger King - Another reason why we must be protected by anti-discrimination laws at our places of employment.

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Hate group leader Tony Perkins distorts Billy Porter's words to condemn his appearance on Sesame Street

Billy Porter wearing 'the dress.'

The news that openly gay actor Billy Porter will be making an appearance on Sesame Street has inflamed a few members of the religious right. The fact that the Emmy, Grammy, and Tony-award winning star will also be wearing the gown he stopped traffic with at last year's Oscar telecast provides an added bitter taste in their mouths.

So naturally, hate group the Family Research Council and its president Tony Perkins has weighed in with a sad attempt to both demonize the transgender community and distort Porter's words about the situation:

 In the transgender debate, even Bert and Ernie are puppets for the Left! Incredibly, "Sesame Street," the once-beloved kids' show, is making the best case for defunding PBS yet: inviting drag queen Billy Porter on to teach kids the virtues of gender confusion.
Wearing a "tuxedo dress," Porter, the star of Kinky Boots, has already been tweeting about the appearance. 
"I was tickled to meet Elmo and the gang," he posted. Parents, on the other hand, aren't nearly so thrilled. More than 55,000 have signed a LifeSite petition calling on the network to drop the episode. "By contributing to this social contagion, ‘Sesame Street' is forcing children to deal with adult concepts and notions about sexuality which are beyond their level of maturity, and which can leave psychological scars. Many jurisdictions define this kind of behavior as abuse... We are demanding the producers of 'Sesame Street' stop this attack on children and their innocence." 
When word of the backlash made its way to Porter, he hit back at parents. "Stay out of my bedroom, and you'll be fine. That is none of your business." Leave the bedroom out of our children's shows, and it won't be our business. That's what moms and dads object to. It wasn't that long ago that LGBT activists were trying to get the government out of their private lives. Now they want to throw their private lives into our faces, our children's faces, and every classroom in between. Personally, I don't want to know what Billy Porter -- or anyone else -- does in private. I do, however, care if it's flaunted in front of my kids. 
Like most activists, Porter could care less. "I'm a part of the first generation of gay men, ever, who gets to be out loud and proud in the world," he said. "My generation is the first. B**ches are scared. And they should be." 
For PBS, though, this is all par for its liberal course. Taxpayers have fought for years to stop the government's broadcasting arm from sexualizing kids on everything from the Muppets to "Sesame Street." When Donald Trump became president, one of the first things his budget proposed slashing was the $445 million for the Corporation of Public Broadcasting. His latest version, just released this week, tries again. 
Liberals always plead with Republicans to lay off Burt and Ernie, but what they really mean is -- don't stop funding the Left's free microphone! For years, NPR and PBS have taken advantage of the airwaves to spout their radical agenda. And in the end, taxpayers are the ones who've been played. But now that PBS has shown that it can't be trusted, it's time for Big Bird's liberal friends to feather their own nest!

It's so pathetic how Perkins and FRC attempts to connect this non-controversy with their fake outrage du jour - the transgender community.  It's equally pathetic how he distorts Porter's response to the so-called outrage in an attempt to appeal to the tired homophobic tropes about us  "sexualizing children" and "throwing out private lives in people's faces."

This is the part of Porter's response which Perkins omitted:

“If you don’t like it, don’t watch it,” adding that he thinks it’s odd that people would even make the mental leap from his dress to “perverted demon sex.” 
“Like, what about me singing with a penguin [on the show] has anything to do with what I’m doing in my bedroom?” the “Pose” star posed to us at L’Avenue at Saks, where he was hosting a party for the restaurant’s first anniversary. 
“The really interesting thing for me is that that’s what it’s all about when it comes to LGBTQ people — the first thing everyone wants to talk about is how we having sex.”
He added, “Stay out of my bedroom and you will be fine — that is none of your business.”

Plainly speaking, Perkins and his supporters can dredge up illicit sexual fantasies in their minds about the LGBTQ community any time they want. But they don't have the right to make us conform to their false ideas of who we are.

And they don't have the right to erase our rights, safety, families, humanity or dignity.

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

'More high schoolers coming out, but more acceptance is needed' & other Wed midday news briefs

More high school students than ever are coming out, but their despair remains acute - As more children are coming out, they are being met with the reality of a homophobic world. That's one of the main reasons why we cannot sit back and despair when things happens to our community. Those children are watching us and when they see us raising hell over homophobia and refuse to be disrespected, they get empowered. Remember that whenever you feel complacent. It's not just about you.

Missouri Officer Told To ‘Tone Down Gayness’ Settles Suit For $10.25 Million - Y'all meet my new husband. . . lol 

Virginia Democrats walk out as GOP-invited pastor denigrates gay people on House floor - Virginia Republicans are still bitter over their election loss, so they invited this bozo to do a prayer on the House floor.

12 New Jersey schools roll out LGBTQ curriculum pilot program - Good for them!

NBA star Dwyane Wade talks candidly about accepting and empowering his trans child

It bothers me tremendously when people generalize about the African-American community when it comes homophobia and such. Forget the lazy idea expressed by some folks that black people are more homophobic than other groups because it's simply not true. That's not to say that homophobia doesn't exist in the black community. There is nuances and intricacies. But one thing is clear -  family is always important.

From Out:
With everything else going on in the world, it feels nothing short of amazing to watch Dwyane Wade, noted NBA star, talk about how he and his wife Gabrielle Union are not only supporting but also empowering their teenaged child Zaya. 
“First of all me and my wife, Gabrielle Union, we are proud parents of a child in the LGBTQ+ community and we’re proud allies as well,” Wade said in a new interview on The Ellen DeGeneres Show. The spot was to promote a new ESPN documentary based on the basketball player, called D Wade: Life Unexpected. “We take our roles and responsibilities as parents very seriously. So, when our child comes home with a question, when our child comes home with an issue, when our child comes home with anything, it’s our job as parents to listen to that to give them the best information that we can, the best feedback that we can, and that doesn’t change now that sexuality [and gender] is involved.” 
In December, Wade did an interview where he referred to the 12-year-old with she/her pronouns. Now, Wade has revealed that one day the child came home and sat Wade and Union down and asked not only to be referred to with those pronouns, but to also be called Zaya, as she comes into her identity.

With all of the lies propagated against trans children by the anti-LGBTQ industry, it's awesome to see a public figure telling his family's personal experience and steamrolling over all of the fear tactics and distortions.

Monday, February 10, 2020

'Trump Administration sending gay refugees into dangerous environment' & other Tue midday news briefs

Trump now exposing gay refugees to danger by sending them to homophobic environments.

A gay refugee is suing the Trump administration for sending him to Guatemala - I hope he wins. It's completely insane what the Trump Administration is doing to refugees in general. It is especially harming LGBTQ refugees.

Two Gay Immigrants Left Everything For Safety In The US. Instead, They Were Sent To Guatemala. - More detail about this awful situation. 

Janelle MonĂ¡e Is 'Proud' to Open Oscars as a 'Black Queer Artist' - Janelle Monae and Billy Porter singing at the Oscars. What more do you need? 

Medina split over LGBTQ protections - Meanwhile, our struggle goes on around the nation.

South Dakota anti-trans health bill is dead

Wonderful news out of South Dakota. From NBC News:

The South Dakota Legislature on Monday effectively killed House Bill 1057, which sought to block physicians in the state from providing puberty blockers and gender confirmation surgery to transgender children under 16. 
By a 5-2 vote, the state Senate Health and Human Services Committee sent the bill “to the 41st day,” which means a bill has been effectively killed because the state’s part-time Legislature has only 40 working days. 
"It's gone," Quinncy Parke, 17, who is transgender and testified against the bill, told The Associated Press. “I don’t have to worry about it until next year.” The ACLU of South Dakota, which had led the fight against the bill, cheered its apparent demise. 
“Though supporters claimed House Bill 1057 was aimed at protecting vulnerable youth, it was clearly fueled by a fear and misunderstanding of transgender South Dakotans,” said Libby Skarin, policy director for the group. “It’s time we stop these attacks and the very real harm they cause to transgender youth across our state. Let this be a signal to the South Dakota Legislature that discrimination against a marginalized group is a distraction from the needs of the state and hurts us all.”

What killed it?

Sunday, February 09, 2020

'Billy Porter 'reads' Trump, brings hope during the LGBTQ State of the Union address' & other Mon midday news briefs

Billy Porter reads Trump, but also gives us hope, in LGBTQ State of the Union address - This happened last week and I missed it. However, it is a must view. The "mainstream" media has pretty much ignored Trump's war on our rights and safety, so it's up to us to bring it public and take our stand. Billy pushes us a step in the right direction.

Kevin Hart Reflects On Oscars Hosting Gig Controversy: ‘I Did F**k Up’ - No kidding! Our lives are not jokes, Kevin.Nor is the safety of LGBTQ children.

U.S. corporate giants condemn anti-LGBT laws as economic 'risk' - That's right. You had BETTER believe it.

Md. House committee holds hearing on name change bill - State by state, our fight for equality rages on.

We're Queer, We're Here! We're Black! That's a Fact!

I've posted these two videos several times in the past and I am going to keep posting them to remind folks of the diversity of the LGBTQ community in the past and present. There is so much of our history omitted because the image of LGBTQ seems to always be the same. In reality, we come in all cultures, ethnicities, all regions, all ages, all political persuasions, etc. It is fitting that we remember this during Black History Month. It would be more fitting and appropriate to not wait until Black History Month to keep it in mind.

All of the folks in these videos have been verified, except for George Washington Carver. His life has been a mystery.

Thursday, February 06, 2020

'Fox News: Rush Limbaugh getting Medal of Freedom is same as when Ellen Degeneres received it' & other Fri midday news briefs

Ellen Degeneres
Fox News Contributor: Trump Giving Rush Limbaugh Medal Of Freedom Is Same as Obama Giving It to Ellen Degeneres - Laaawd! If that's the story you idiots wanna tell .. .

Laura Ingraham lies that affirming trans students is “child abuse,” will lead to lower age of consent - I weep when I think of the people who have their own shows to spew lies and propaganda.

Pinelands Regional parents get first look at new LGBTQ lessons their kids will learn - This is the proper route. Let parents see the lessons and become informed. That would cut down on how the anti-LGBTQ industry attempts to inspire fear. 

Christian couple rejected as foster parents because they’d send a gay kid to conversion therapy - I'm sorry but this is necessary. The couple later said that they are willing to foster heterosexual children, but you see, that's not good enough. What about the LGBTQ children who are afraid to come out. What would they do if a child they fostered came out? Would they send the child to that awful therapy?

Franklin Graham gets a deserved taste of his own medicine and it is delightfully bitter

Franklin "Christian businesses shouldn't be forced to service the LGBTQ community"  Graham just got a taste of what it's like to be refused service and he doesn't like it. In fact, he is talking about suing.

 From the awful right-wing Charisma News by way of JoeMyGod:

After facing discrimination in the U.K. because of his biblical beliefs, a spokesman for Franklin Graham tells CBN News that the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (BGEA) has have decided to fight in court for its religious rights there. 
 "Since the original venues have broken our legal contract with them, we are pursuing appropriate actions based on grounds of religious discrimination and freedom of speech. The gospel always faces opposition, so we will prayerfully and boldly continue to press forward so that the Good News of God's love and forgiveness will be proclaimed in all of the cities we have planned to visit," the BGEA spokesman told CBN News. 
 The statement comes after another city in the U.K. has rejected an appearance by Graham to preach the gospel because of his views on homosexuality. However, this has not deterred the evangelist, who's still looking forward to his eight-city tour of the country.

Wednesday, February 05, 2020

'Georgia bill could let adoption agencies bar LGBTQ foster parents' & other Thur midday news briefs

Bill could let Georgia adoption agencies bar LGBTQ foster parents - While using LGBTQ tax dollars. I keep telling people to look for the folks behind these bills, not the lawmakers pushing them.

Trump lawyer Jay Sekulow recommended conversion therapy to combat the supposed “perversion” of being LGBTQ - Trash is as trash does. 

Newsom pardons civil rights leader Bayard Rustin, convicted of gay sex in ’50s - Excellent news out of California. 

Ralph Northam reiterates support for Va. nondiscrimination bill - Then get it passed, already!

Pray for Rush Limbaugh. But never forget that he's lower than whale sh!t

This week, talk show host Rush Limbaugh announced that he is suffering from lung cancer.

We all know Limbaugh. He has spent an entire career attacking minorities, telling lies, smearing his opponents, and gloating over his success (complete with pictures of huge cigars dangling from his lips) in the name of "American exceptionalism."

Some of his activities included referring to Obama as a "man-child" (boy) and pushing birther lies about him, making a multitude of racist comments, spending several days describing different ways how college student Sandra Fluke is a "slut" simply because she spoke out about the need for birth control, claiming that actor Michael J. Fox was faking his Parkinson's Disease, and last but not least:

Making fun of people afflicted with and dying from AIDS by playing the Dionne Warwick song, "I Know I'll Never Love This Way Again."

Since his announcement, there has been an outpouring of well-wishers eager to express their support of him during his crisis.

Tuesday, February 04, 2020

'Republican suggests pulling funding from Sesame Street because of Billy Porter and his gown' & other Wed midday news briefs

Billy Porter

Republican wants to pull funding from Sesame Street because Billy Porter will appear in a glamorous tuxedo gown - I wonder how he feels about Bugs Bunny crossdressing. It is ridiculous how some folks are making a fuss about this. The children will see it, then go on to something else.

Advocates tracking over 200 active state bills targeting LGBTQ Americans - 200? Boy are we popular . . . or not.

U.S. bans Tanzanian official who launched anti-gay crackdown - What's the catch? 

Kristin Chenoweth Brilliantly Sums Up What It Means To Be Christian And An LGBTQ Advocate - She's right.

Family Research Council traffics a horror story about trans children to support homophobic SD bill

The Family Research Council exploits yet another horror anecdote about gays and children to drum up support for homophobic South Dakota bill.

"It's an absolute nightmare for a mother to live through." Elaine Davidson's voice shook as she talked. "I found out about the surgeries after the fact," she says haltingly. It was social media, she explained, where she first saw the photo of her daughter's chest -- bloody bandages covering the places where her breasts had been cut off. Elaine's daughter was 17. She had a double mastectomy and hysterectomy without her parents ever knowing -- and without a single psychologist signing off. 
 . . . She watched, helplessly, as her daughter changed the course of her life forever. And she is determined that no parent should ever have to suffer that agony without a say again. She joined the Kelsey Coalition, a movement of parents from all across the political spectrum, who are pleading with schools, lawmakers, and doctors to stop pushing children into a lifestyle they can never escape. "I'm speaking out because I love my daughter... She has been a victim of 'gender affirming' medical procedures, and I was powerless to stop doctors from harming her."

This vulgar tale from an alleged mother of a trans child is designed to scare people. That's why it emphasized the stuff about "bloody bandages and de-emphasizes telling the the actual story of the situation. It's a key part of the anti-LGBTQ right's attack on the trans community.

If you think the tactic sounds familiar, then you would be right. Personal stories with very little details but graphic depictions designed to speak to people's stereotypes and fears about the LGBTQ community have been the modus operandi of groups like the Family Research Council (on whose site this article is featured).  In this particular case, FRC is attempting to drum up support for a South Dakota bill which would undermine the care of transgender children, among other things.

Personal stories are a very important part of the war against LGBTQ rights and safety.

When the anti-LGBTQ industry used a personal story to promote the  "ex-gay" movement, the person spotlit  generally claimed that child molestation triggered his or her homosexuality. Then there would be a segue into how he or she had a lot of sex, or did a lot of drugs, and/or found no fulfillment because their relationships were shallow, transitory, or devoid of commitment.

When the anti-LGBTQ industry used a personal story to attack marriage equality or same-sex families, the designated teller  would claim to have been brought up with a gay parent who had lots of sex, did lots of drugs, and/or engaged in extremely irresponsible behavior which left the child warped for life.

In all three examples, the goal is the same - to play up negative stereotypes about the LGBTQ community, to scare people, and to take attention away from positive personal stories from members of the LGBTQ community. When you are bombarded with anecdotes from people who tell biased renditions  or from people who blame their sexual orientation for their own bad choices, you have less time to hear actual facts and stories. And when it comes to trans children, there is plenty of information and positive stories which don't involve lurid and false information.

And there are other considerations.

In this particular case, the Family Research Council won't tell you that the woman in the story belongs to a group, the Kelsey Coalition, which pushes fraudulent data and lies about the trans community. Nor did FRC  mention that the South Dakota bill would not only harm care for trans children, but seek to eliminate other rights of the LGBTQ community, including marriage (which we already won fairly) and attempts to create anti-discrimination laws.

FRC figures that as long as you are distracted by images of bloody bandages and so-called body mutilations, truth is not necessary.

Monday, February 03, 2020

'Was Superbowl LIV the 'gayest sporting event' thus far?' & other Tue midday news briefs

Super Bowl LIV: LGBTQ advocates applaud event's 'rainbow wave' - Well things have definitely changed.

Jersey City Muslim and Coptic Christian parents angry over state-mandated LGBT curriculum - Just a matter of people assuming that their lives and their families are the only ones which matter. They claim they have no problem with LGBTQs, but then they throw words around like "indoctrination."

graphic taken from Outtake.

Franklin Graham rises from the depths of Trump's butt to condemn 'indecent' Superbowl halftime show

Sit down, Frankie.
I personally think that after the many times he has defended or made excuses for Trump's behavior, Franklin Graham has lost all privileges to condemn so-called lascivious behavior.

But apparently irony is lost on him:

I didn't watch the Superbowl halftime show put on by Jennifer Lopez and Shakira. But I am disgustingly familiar with  Franklin's opportunistic outrage. Don't get me wrong because I think it's good that he's shining a spotlight on the exploitation of women. Of course it doesn't help matters when one realizes that he supports a president who has been accused by 25 (make that 26) women of sexual misconduct, including rape. And it equally doesn't help matters that he has bent over backwards to either make excuses for Trump's awful behavior or told out-and-out lies while defending him.

And then there's the abnormally loving praise he has heaped on Trump as a so-called defender of Christianity:

Graham seems to have forgotten that moral decency belongs in the White House as much as he thinks it belongs on prime time television.

Sunday, February 02, 2020

'South Dakota bill aims to completely eliminate LGBTQ rights' & other Mon midday news briefs

The future of LGBTQ rights if South Dakota lawmakers have their way.

It’s No Exaggeration: Sweeping South Dakota Bill Aims to Eliminate LGBTQ Rights - Hands down, the most dangerous anti-LGBTQ bill I have ever seen:
The state may not enforce, endorse, or favor policies that: 
(1) Permit any form of marriage that does not involve a man and a woman; 
(2) Appropriate benefits to persons who enter a marriage other than a marriage involving a man and a woman; 
(3) Permit counties to issue marriage licenses to persons other than for a marriage involving a man and a woman; 
(4) Treat sexual orientation as a suspect class or as a basis of prohibited discrimination; 
(5) Recognize a person’s belief that that person was born a gender that does not accord with the biological sex of the person as determined by that person’s anatomy at birth; 
(6) Appropriate tax dollars to pay for sex change operations; 
(7) Ban conversion therapy. Under this subdivision, conversion therapy, means a therapeutic practice in which a licensed medical professional, acting under authorized consent, assists a client in the goal or realigning the client’s sexual preference to prefer members of the opposite sex who have corresponding reproductive anatomy; 
(8) Permit public libraries or public schools in the state to partner with nonsecular organizations to promote, host, sponsor, favor, or endorse drag queen storytime; 
(9) Mandate pronoun changes; 
(10) Condone or affirm homosexual, transgender, zoophilia, objectophilia, polygamy, or sexual orientation doctrines; and 
(11) Permit a person to change the sex on a birth certificate to a sex that does not accord with that person’s anatomy at birth. 
This bill is plain evil. It doesn't hide its animus against the LGBTQ community under some ridiculous guise of "religious freedom." To put it simply, the bill is saying, "we don't like the LGBTQ community and we don't think they deserve any rights because we don't consider them normal. We don't care about them. We don't care about their families. We just don't want them around us and we will create laws which will target them so they get the message" 

And even if it is defeated, I hear there will be other attempts to pass similar bills in other states. Our solution is to hold the bill and the evil behind it up the light. Talk about it, repeat it constantly. Giving the world knowledge about this bill can destroy it and the evil mindset of those pushing it. The fight against it has already started with the South Dakota chapter of the ACLU.

Iowa Republicans give up on removing transgender people from state’s civil rights protections - A moment of sanity as lawmakers saw the "unintended consequences" of this particular bill

Ruth Ellis Center building 43 units of supportive housing for LGBTQ young adults - Outstanding news from Detroit! 

Mike Pompeo Snubs Ukraine’s Embattled LGBTQ Community - Of course that jerk did.

Top 10 Memorable Moments from 'Pose'

What can you say about a television show which has already reached legendary status even though it has only two seasons under its belt thus far?

From Wikipedia:

Pose (stylized as POSE) is an American drama television series about New York City's African-American and Latino LGBTQ and gender-nonconforming ballroom culture scene in the 1980s and, in the second season, early 1990s. Featured characters are dancers and models who compete for trophies and recognition in this underground culture, and who support one another in a network of chosen families known as Houses. 

Pose is an incredible series which has already won an Emmy for one of its main stars - Billy Porter (who became the first openly gay black man to win as 'Best Actor in a Dramatic Series.')  Pose will definitely win more Emmy, particularly the one for 'Best Dramatic Series.' It has already won the hearts of LGBTQs of color who have waited the longest to see a television show which features us, even though some of us may not be in as detrimental of a situation as the characters.

I've never seen a full episode of  Pose. I've caught snippets from Youtube and the reason is simple. To me, Pose is like staring into the face of the Divine or managing to touch the 'Holy Grail.' I can only endure it in small doses. I don't think I could handle watching an entire episode. The characters, their joys, pains, tragedies, and successes are too real to me. I already have a problem detaching myself from what I've allowed myself to see. When you take a look at Ms.Mojo's '10 Memorable Moments' from the series, I think you will understand how I feel.

Thursday, January 30, 2020

'Transgender student gets huge settlement from Penn school district' & other Fri midday news briefs

British people are 'cancelling' Franklin Graham and the Charlotte Observer is here for it

The British are giving Franklin Graham exactly what he deserves.

If it weren't for Trump's impeachment trial, this situation would be getting more attention. The British are up in arms about Franklin Graham visiting their country and they are also a bit more successful in showing their disdain

From Pink News:
The Trump-supporting preacher, who is known for praising Vladimir Putin’s anti-gay laws and blaming gay people for a “moral 9/11”, is set to visit the UK at the start of Pride Month in June as part of an evangelist tour.  
 Venues hosting the tour have faced complaints from LGBT+ activists – with a Liverpool conference venue dropping him on Monday. Following the pressure, two further venues have followed suit Glasgow’s SEC Arena confirmed on Wednesday that his May 30 rally at the venue will not go ahead.

A spokesperson told PinkNews: “The booking for this event was processed in the same way we would for any religious concert of this nature and as a business we remain impartial to the individual beliefs of both our clients and visitors. “However, we are aware of the recent adverse publicity surrounding this tour and have reviewed this with our partners and stakeholders. Following a request from our principal shareholder the matter has been considered and a decision made that we should not host this event.” His planned June 6 rally at Sheffield Arena has also been scrapped, after a decision by Sheffield City Council.

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

'Bank takes a stand against homophobic Christian schools' & other Thur midday news briefs

Lil Nas X snaps back at homophobic rapper jealous of his success and Grammys

I just caught up with this, but apparently I'm a bit behind everyone else because its the number one trending item on Twitter:

Here is the really offensive part:

I know what you are thinking. Pretty much everyone else is thinking it. We all know who Lil Nas X is. He is the openly gay rapper who burst on the scene with the number one smash hit "Old Town Road." The song was number one for 19 weeks, making it the longest a song remained at the top spot since the charts began in 1958.

Lil Nas X is also the recipient of a multitude of awards including two Grammys on Sunday evening. By contrast, hardly anyone knows who the heck Pastor Troy is. 

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

'Brits to Franklin Graham: We don't want you or your homophobia coming here' & other Wed midday news briefs

Brits are furious Franklin Graham is coming to England to spread anti-LGBTQ “love” - Oh yeah! This is awesome! One city, Liverpool, has already canceled his tour and others don't seem very welcoming.

Lesbians more accepted than gay men around the world, study finds - This is interesting. 

Arizona Bill Would Ban Transgender Girls, Women From Sports Teams - Based totally on assumptions. God forbid any of these "concerned" people attempt a real conversation including actual medical experts on the issue. And you can tell it's bigoted. It would only apply to female teams. 

Anti-LGBTQ adoption bill puts law over morality - Amen.

State lawmakers working with anti-LGBTQ groups on bills targeting transgender children

Media Matters has just come out with a wonderful article which exposes who is behind the large number of state legislative bills targeting transgender children:

On January 22, a South Dakota legislative committee moved forward HB 1057, a dangerous bill that would make it a misdemeanor for medical professionals to provide trans youth with affirming medical care, such as prescribing lifesaving hormones or puberty blockers. While drafting the measure, the bill’s sponsor, state Rep. Fred Deutsch (R), reportedly consulted with an anti-trans group called the Kelsey Coalition that has ascended with the help of right-wing media. 
Anti-LGBTQ groups the Heritage Foundation, Alliance Defending Freedom, and Liberty Counsel also reportedly influenced the measure, which is expected to be voted on by the full South Dakota state House on January 29.

The Kelsey Coalition is a group of medical professionals, parents, and others who reject the identities of trans youth and advocate against affirming care. The Heritage Foundation gave the Kelsey Coalition its first major platform by featuring a member at a panel advocating against affirming the gender identities of trans youth.

According to The Washington Post, Deutsch attended a separate anti-trans event at the Heritage Foundation, at which organizations involved -- including the Kelsey Coalition -- released a co-branded parent resource guide on how to reject transgender children and advance policies to attack the trans community. Deutsch is also reported to have worked with extreme anti-LGBTQ groups Alliance Defending Freedom and Liberty Counsel on the bill.

Monday, January 27, 2020

'Drag queens will appear in a Super Bowl ad for the first time ever' & other Tue midday news briefs

Drag queens will appear in a Super Bowl ad for the first time ever - And I am HERE for it.

Bowen Yang Opens Up About His Experience In ‘Gay Conversion’ Therapy - Wow! An SNL cast member gets real about that awful "therapy." 

Darrell Issa slammed by fellow Republicans for running “gay-baiting” political attack ad - You know it's serious when other members of the GOP are bothered by it. 

This Is How U.K. LGBTQ Rights Change After Brexit This Week - The struggle is real and worldwide.

Dear conservative evangelicals leaders, when Trump goes down, you need to go with him (and here are just a few of the receipts to pay your ticket)

Conservative evangelical leaders embraced Trump because he was giving them power, access, laws and the judges they wanted. Let's not allow America to forget how they went knee deep with full knowledge in his corrupt administration.  And let's not allow America to forget how they either ignored or made excuses for his behavior. 

As we watch Trump's impeachment trial with all of its twists and turns, one thing is clear. Even if he does get away with what he has done, there is enough proof to show that Trump has tarnished himself the presidency, the GOP and especially folks who claim to have a mindset which should have elevated them to know better.

I'm talking about Franklin Graham, Robert Jeffress, Jerry Falwell, Jr. and the rest of the evangelical right/anti-LGBTQ industry who freely and wantonly sacrificed all of the values they claimed to uphold for a little political power. They got a president who gave them access to policy, gave them some judges and laws which attacked the LGBTQ community and women's health while giving their religious beliefs an unfair advantage and an elevated status.

 In return, conservative evangelical leaders sacrificed the integrity they claimed to have, the values they claimed to uphold, and the mask they wore when they claimed to uphold that integrity and those values.

And no one should forget their real faces - that of hypocritical, self-righteous, power-hungry bloodsuckers who would find a Biblical verse to defend the devil if it meant more power and more access to White House policy.

To hopefully make sure that people don't, I've been saving a few receipts to serve as reminders of how low conservative evangelical leaders stooped. To their supporters, these receipts don't mean anything. But to the rest of America, especially those who aren't aware of them, don't exactly care for them, and will be here after we are all gone, they are a perfect representation of  the true face of America's evangelical right.

Here are just demonstrating how they drolled and fawned over Trump while in full knowledge of his incompetence and corruption.

Sunday, January 26, 2020

'Statewide anti-LGBTQ measures part of religious right playbook' & other Mon midday news briefs

State legislatures are filled with anti-LGBTQ measures, thanks to a religious right playbook - FINALLY, some recognizes it and calls it out.

Project Blitz Is Producing Model Legislation For Christian Nationalists - The name of the group in the article above is Project Blitz and they have something especially nasty in store for us. It's an old anti-LGBTQ lie that we buried in our pursuits of marriage equality. But homophobic lies never die. That's why they are headless monsters. They are dead beliefs propped up by living hatred. 

Sanders campaign defends accepting Joe Rogan support amid LGBTQ backlash - Joe Rogan is a homophobic jerk and we shouldn't . . . well end of story. 

Who's the 'Q' in LGBTQ? Study shines light on 'queer' identities. - Definitely a needed discussion.

Graphic courtesy of Americans United for the Separation of Church and State. The organization has extensive information on Project Blitz

How some gay conservatives attempt to exploit the LGBTQ community for personal gain.

Rob Smith
The guy on the right is Rob Smith. He was one of the activists who chained themselves to the White House fence almost 10 years ago in protest of the 'Don't Ask Don't Tell' policy. These days, he considers himself an openly gay conservative Trump supporter.  He is even affiliated with the group Turning Point USA  in spite of its racist history.

If you ask me, he's in it partly (probably mostly) for how the novelty of being a contrarian gay man (i.e. one who is openly gay and claims to have been once a liberal, but now sets up straw man arguments to attack the community) can reap lots of press and acclaim.  Just ask Brandon Straka or Chadwick Moore.

For the purpose of this post, I want to show how some gay conservatives attempt to work our community for their own benefit. See the tweet below by Smith:

It's both rude and seemingly innocuous, but let me add my perspective:

In other words, the purpose of  the tweet was to inflame emotions and push up a vicious war with the LGBTQ community. And if it's big enough, guess who gets articles in right-wing publications (such as The Federalist or The Daily Caller) and invites on Fox News (because the only LGBTQ people invited on that network are the ones who attack their own community)?

Rob Smith.

And the end is basically this - Smith's profile is raised in the conservative world and he is lauded as being "brave" and a "hero" for supposedly speaking against the "radical gay community" (that's us). He is anointed as a "free thinker" while we are portrayed as "intolerant of others in our community with different points of view."

Worst of all, some members of our community, who are either too egotistical or gullible to realize  how they are being manipulated, will take his side and attempt to generate a wrong-minded debate which will do nothing but divide and inflame us further while making Smith's profile grow and grow.

And that, brothers and sisters, is how the game is played on us. Our community may have differences, but we should all come together to recognize when someone is exploiting us to gain fame. Even if that person is "family."