Wednesday, May 25, 2022

It's time to act!


A gunman shot and killed 19 students and two school employees in Uvalde, Texas. He was later killed by police. It was just a week earlier that after a racist, hate-filled shooter killed 10 Black people at a grocery store in Buffalo, New York.

Lamenting a uniquely American tragedy, an anguished and angry President Joe Biden delivered an urgent call for new restrictions on firearms. President Biden addressed the shooting and said:

"It’s time to turn this pain into action. For every parent, for every citizen in this country, we have to make it clear to every elected official in this country: It’s time to act. It’s time, for those who obstruct or delay or block the commonsense gun laws, we need to let you know that we will not forget. We can do so much more.  We have to do more."

Watch President Biden' speech below:

Tuesday, May 24, 2022

Gay Florida high school senior refuses to be censored during his graduation speech

Zander Moricz, 18, is the senior class president at Pine View School in Florida's Sarasota County. He's set to speak at his upcoming high school graduation, but Moricz claims his principal and school administration officials are trying to preemptively silence him and censor his speech.

Moricz is also one of the plaintiffs named in a lawsuit against the State of Florida relating to its recently signed Parental Rights in Education law, or what critics have dubbed the "Don't Say Gay" law.

"A few days ago, my principal called me into his office and informed me that if my graduation speech referenced my activism or role as a plaintiff in the lawsuit, school administration had a signal to cut off my microphone, end my speech, and halt the ceremony," wrote Moricz on Twitter. "I am the first openly-gay Class President in my school’s history, this censorship seems to show that they want me to be the last."

Moricz opted for a hair metaphor after he says faculty members threatened to censor his graduation speech if he spoke about his LGBTQ activism or experiences as a gay teen. So, when Moricz delivered his speech at Pine View’s graduation ceremony, he shared quips about his curly hair as euphemisms for being gay.

“I used to hate my curls,” he said in the speech, which can be viewed in full here. “I spent mornings and nights embarrassed of them, trying to desperately straighten this part of who I am. But the daily damage of trying to fix myself became too much to endure.”

“There are going to be so many kids with curly hair who need a community like Pine View and they will not have one,” Moricz continued. “Instead, they’ll try to fix themselves so that they can exist in Florida’s humid climate.”

Watch the speech below:

Monday, May 23, 2022

Taliban orders female Afghan TV presenters to cover faces on air


Women presenters on Afghanistan's leading news channels went on air Sunday with their faces covered, a day after defying a Taliban order to conceal their appearance on television.

Since seizing power last year, the Taliban have imposed a slew of restrictions on civil society, many focused on reining in the rights of women and girls to comply with the group's austere brand of Islam.

Earlier this month, Afghanistan's supreme leader Hibatullah Akhundzada issued a diktat for women to cover up fully in public, including their faces, ideally with the traditional burqa.

The feared Ministry for Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice ordered women TV presenters to follow suit from Saturday. But the presenters defied the order and went on air with their faces visible.

Women presenters were previously only required to wear a headscarf. But now they have to wear full hijabs and face-covering veils that leave only their eyes in view, women presenters and reporters have aired morning news bulletins across leading channels like TOLOnews, Ariana Television, Shamshad TV and 1TV.

Soon after resuming control, the Taliban promised a softer version of the harsh Islamist rule that characterised their first stint in power from 1996 to 2001. Since the takeover, however, women have been banned from travelling alone and teenage girls barred from secondary schools.

Not only women have to face a lost of rights, LGBT Afghans and people who do not conform to rigid gender norms in Afghanistan have faced an increasingly desperate situation and grave threats to their safety and lives under the Taliban, Human Rights Watch and OutRight Action International said in a report.

Read the report here

Saturday, May 21, 2022

Turkish police break up student LGBTQ event, arrest dozens


Police in Turkey broke up an LGBTQ pride parade at one the country’s top public universities and detained all of the participants. A small group of students tried to resist arrest.

Riot police entered Bogazici University and surrounded dozens of students who were waiving rainbow flags and calling for tolerance. They arrested the students one by one and led them into police buses with their hands cuffed behind them.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s conservative government has banned LGBTQ parades since 2015, citing security concerns, “public sensitivities” and other issues. Authorities have ordered other LGBTQ events stopped as well.

Tensions at the university heightened a month into the protests after a poster depicting the Islamic holy site Kaaba with LGBTQ flags appeared in a campus exhibition.

Turkey's interior minister called the students involved “LGBT deviants,” and two were arrested on charges of inciting hatred and insulting religious values.

The European Union decried the detention of university students in Turkey and the use of anti-LGBT “hate speech” after President Erdogan lashed out at youth-driven protests.

Mr. Erdogan, love always win!!

Thursday, May 19, 2022

Russian state TV hosts mock the new White House press secretary

The Russian state TV hosts have mocked the new White House press secretary, Karine Jean-Pierre, with comments about her sexuality, gender and skin color.

The TV hosts used footage of Jean-Pierre at her first press conference to mock her. They continued with a racist and sexist rant on the state-owned Russian television channel 1. 

The Kremlin propagandists on Russian state TV claimed Jean-Pierre was not chosen for her professional abilities and said that she only got the job because she is a dark-skinned immigrant.

They laughed as they said Jean-Pierre will be replaced in a month or two by a white, heterosexual male.

Jean-Pierre has become the first black, openly gay White House press secretary. She was born in Fort-de-France, Martinique and is the daughter of Haitian parents. Her family moved to New York City when she was five.

Addressing her historic position in her first press briefing, Jean-Pierre said: "I am obviously acutely aware that my presence at this podium represents a few firsts. I am a black gay immigrant woman, the first of all three of those to hold this position. I would not be here today if it were not for generations of barrier-breaking people before me. I stand on their shoulders."

Jean-Pierre and Psaki at the White House press room

Wednesday, May 18, 2022

New Royal Mint coin released to mark 50 years of Pride


The Royal Mint, the government-owned mint that produces coins for the United Kingdom (UK), has revealed the first-ever official coin created for the LGBTQ community to celebrate 50 years of the UK Pride movement. 

The first official UK Gay Pride Rally was held in London on July 1 1972 since it was the closest Saturday to the anniversary of the 1969 Stonewall riots.

The rally had approximately 2,000 participants and almost 50 years later, in 2019, 1.5 million people attended, making it the biggest Pride in the UK.

The new 50p coin, designed by east London artist and activist Dominique Holmes, will mark the momentous anniversary.

The eye-catching design features the historic Pride progression flag and is also inscribed with Pride in London’s values. In four striking rainbows, the values read protest, visibility, unity, and equality.

Asad Shaykh, director of marketing and communications at Pride in London, said: “It was a privilege to visit The Royal Mint as part of our partnership and see our coin being made. It humbles me greatly that the words that I coined for the brand … will be on an actual coin, opposite the Queen".

Happy 50 Prides!!!

Tuesday, May 17, 2022

May 17, International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia & Transphobia


The International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia (IDAHOBIT) is observed every year on May 17, and aims to coordinate international events that raise awareness of LGBT rights violations and stimulate interest in LGBT rights work worldwide. 

The main purpose of the IDAHOBIT is to raise awareness of violence, discrimination, and repression of LGBT communities worldwide, which in turn provides an opportunity to take action and engage in dialogue with the media, policymakers, public opinion, and wider civil society.

The day is particularly strong in Europe and Latin America, where it is commemorated with public events in almost all countries. Common actions include large-scale street marches, parades and festivals. Since 2021, the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia has been officially recognized and commemorated by over 130 different countries across the globe.

A societal sense of awareness about these enduring issues has been gaining more and more attention as several important figures in the current global setting speak up regarding their approval and support of this initiative. Of these includes a statement officiated by the current president of the United States, Joe Biden, that highlights his endorsement and recognition of the IDAHOBIT. 

In the released statement, the president went as far as to highlight that his support would be coupled with continued aid in formulating and implementing further action towards alleviating LGBT discrimination within communities, making mention of the Equality Act that as of October 2021 remains an unpassed bill because Republicans.

Enough of discrimination, today and always!!!

Sunday, May 15, 2022

President Biden warns: "They are going to go after the Supreme Court decision on same-sex marriage"

President Joe Biden has warned that the U.S. Supreme Court (SCOTUS) could target gay marriage next if it overturns abortion rights.

It follows a leak of a draft decision from the highest court in America that if actualised would see the historic 1973 Roe vs Wade about abortion overturned. A final decision is expected in June.

Abortion is among a number of fundamental rights that the court over many decades recognized at least in part as what are called "substantive" due process liberties, including contraception in 1965, interracial marriage in 1967 and same-sex marriage in 2015.

Though these rights are not explicitly mentioned in the Constitution, they are linked to personal privacy, autonomy, dignity and equality. 

Speaking to reporters, President Biden said the Supreme Court was effectively saying there is no right to privacy with the decision.  "It's not just the brutality of taking away a woman's right to her body ... but it also, if you read the opinion ... basically says there's no such thing as the right to privacy. If that holds ... mark my words: They are going to go after the Supreme Court decision on same-sex marriage."

President Biden, who is a devout Catholic, has said he is opposed to abortion on a personal level, but doesn't think the government should have a say or impose its views on everyone else.

After the leak, President Biden called on voters to support politicians in the upcoming mid-term elections that are pro-choice.

SCOTUS ruled in favor of same-sex marriage nationwide in 2015

Saturday, May 14, 2022

Greece to ban conversion therapy for minors

Greece banned conversion therapy for minors, a practice aimed at suppressing a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity and which the LGBT community worldwide, as well as health experts, have condemned as harmful.

Under the bill, which Greece’s parliament approved, psychologists or other health professionals need a person’s explicit consent to perform such treatment and face fines and a prison term if they violate the law.

The government has drafted a national strategy that runs until 2025 on reforms promoting gender equality in Greece, a largely conservative country. Canada, New Zealand and France criminalized conversion therapy earlier this year.

“There were some false treatments that stated that when a minor has chosen a different sexual orientation, his parents could supposedly proceed with ‘treatments’ for this child to ‘return to normality,’” Health Minister Thanos Plevris told. 

“Obviously these treatments not only are not a therapy but they are not supported scientifically,” the minister added.

United Nations urged to ban conversion therapy worldwide.

Greek Parliament approved same-sex civil unions in 2015

Thursday, May 12, 2022

Don't miss next weekend the Eurovision Song Contest 2022 in Italy


Two of Italy’s most popular young artists, Mahmood & Blanco, will represent Italy in Eurovision 2022 in Turin, after winning the 72nd Sanremo Music Festival earlier this year with their song Brividi.

As with reigning Contest champs Måneskin, Mahmood shot to fame on The X Factor Italia. The Milanese musician released a succession of singles thereafter, and has also put out two full-length albums.

Blanco is a singer/rapper from Brescia with big aspirations. His 2021 single, Mi Fai Impazzire, spent 8 weeks at the top of the Italian charts, and was followed by the release of debut album, Blu Celeste, which also shot to number one.

Their song Brividi, which means “shivers”, is a contemporary ballad that sees two men pouring their hearts out. But, contrary to what some might think it is, or hope it is, it’s not a male couple’s duet, but it’s a connection of two individuals both struggling and making mistakes in relationships. Mahmood happens to be gay and the other, Blanco, straight. 

Mahmood and Blanco have such a funny dynamic and despite their temperamental differences they genuinely have chemistry and seem to find each other’s company amusing and entertaining.

Watch the video below:

Mahmood and Blanco at Vanity Fair's cover

Tuesday, May 10, 2022

Afghan men claiming asylum in UK on sexuality grounds are refused

The British Home Office has denied asylum to 25 LGBT men from Afghanistan, forced to flee their homes due to their sexuality, since 2017.

Information obtained under the Freedom of Information act by the Byline Times revealed that 25 Afghan men were denied asylum on sexuality grounds by the Home Office, but none were subsequently deported. 

Those men had their asylum applications denied after the Home Office changed its guidance to say Afghanistan was a safe place for LGBT people so long as they didn’t “seek to cause public outrage”. 

Even after the Taliban seized control of Afghanistan, Home Office guidance from October 2021 said that deporting LGBT Afghans presents “no real risk of harm”, although the Government stopped enforcing returns to the country following the UK’s withdrawal. 

LGBT people in Afghanistan have always faced persecution and violence under Sharia law, all forms of same-sex sexual activity are illegal and are punishable by death. Queer people can also be imprisoned for lengthy sentences if they are found to have engaged in sexual activity with a person of the same sex.

A recent report shows the desperate situation of LGBT people in Afghanistan after the Taliban takeover.

Read the report here

Monday, May 9, 2022

Heartstopper, the new queer sensation of TV series


Heartstopper is about Charlie, an openly gay anxious boy, and Nick, a kind-hearted rugby player. They both go to the same British all-boys school and when they meet, they immediately have a connection and become friends.

Before being the new sensation of TV series, it was also a successful comic created by Alicce Oseman in 2016. After three years and 1 million books sold, there was talk of a television adaptation, but Covid pandemic delayed the release until 2022.

The main roles in TV show are played by Joe Locke (Charlie) and Kit Connor (Nick) but, beyond them, the show get a look at their friend groups and classmates, and how they react to the two hanging out with each other, some of them accepting but other directly bullying. Any way, Heartstopper creators wanted to show queer teens that the future can be bright.

The series has received critical acclaim. It shows an inclusive romance and open-armed embrace for queer youth, which lays the strong foundations of what you can only hope will be the uplifting and inclusive depictions of queer characters for the next generation of viewers.

Watch the trailer below:

Saturday, May 7, 2022

Republican senators want TV ratings to warn about LGBTQ content

Five Republican senators have urged the TV Parental Guidelines Monitoring Board to update its ratings for certain children’s shows to include warnings about what they describe as “disturbing” LGBTQ content, namely “irreversible and harmful experimental treatments for mental disorders like gender dysphoria.”

Sens. Roger Marshall (R-Kan.), Mike Braun (R-Ind.), Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), Steve Daines (R-Mont.), and Mike Lee (R-Utah) all signed the letter, which pushes for the PGMA’s rating system to incorporate warnings for LGBTQ content before lamenting how one Disney executive was recently quoted as saying she supports having “many, many many LGBTQ characters in our stories.”

“To the detriment of children, gender dysphoria has become sensationalized in the popular media and television with radical activists and entertainment companies,” the letter reads. “This radical and sexual sensation not only harms children, but also destabilizes and damages parental rights.”

The letter includes multiple mentions of Disney, which has been under assault from conservatives for speaking out against Florida’s new law that prohibits teachers in kindergarten through third grade from discussing sexual orientation or gender identity. The law also allows parents to sue over alleged violations. 

“Sexual orientation and gender identity instruction often entails a discussion concerning an individual’s pattern of emotional, romantic, and sexual attraction,” the senators argue. “Parents all over the country have rightfully expressed outrage over its inclusion in the classroom.”

These Repubican senators sound like Putin's anti-gay propaganda law, why am I not surprised?

The 5 Republican senators who support this retrograde initiative

Thursday, May 5, 2022

Historic appointment as White House press secretary, the first black woman and out LGBTQ person in this role

After a year and a half at the podium, White House press secretary Jen Psaki is planning to leave the White House, and her current deputy, Karine Jean-Pierre, will be her replacement, President Joe Biden announced.

In a historic pick, Jean-Pierre will be the first Black, and first openly gay person to hold the position of White House press secretary. Last month, Jean-Pierre spoke out against anti-LGBTQ legislation in states across the country.

"Karine not only brings the experience, talent and integrity needed for this difficult job, but she will continue to lead the way in communicating about the work of the Biden-Harris Administration on behalf of the American people. Jill and I have known and respected Karine a long time and she will be a strong voice speaking for me and this Administration," President Biden said in a statement.

Jean-Pierre has an accomplished background as a communications leader, from work in the Obama White House to presidential campaigns and local politics. She has also served as Chief Public Affairs Officer for and as an NBC and MSNBC Political Analyst. 

Jean-Pierre and Psaki at the White House press room

Wednesday, May 4, 2022

Tom Daley, champion of Pride

For The Advocate's May/June cover story, Tom Daley, the world-class diver, discusses using his platform to fight for LGBTQ+ athletes and the joy of raising a son with his husband, Dustin Lance Black, here.

The Advocate

Tuesday, May 3, 2022

Police looking for serial killer of gay men in north of Spain


Very bad news from Spain, the police is investigating the action of a serial killer of gay men in the city of Bilbao, after four deaths occurred late 2021.

At first, the four deaths seemed unconnected, but the investigators have found some similarities between the four victims: they were all male users of a dating app for homosexuals and lived in the historic center of Bilbao.

The alert was activated when the relatives of a 43-year-old man who had apparently died naturally reported that someone had taken "thousands of euros" from his bank account. 

Everything changed when liquid ecstasy was found in the samples of the corpse. According to experts, this is a drug that takes away the willpower of those who use it and that, in larger doses, may cause death.

The police verified that one of his last decisions had been to meet at his home with another man he had met through a dating app for homosexuals.

After this discovery, the police began to work with the hypothesis that the alleged murderer drugged the victim to get his online banking passwords and credentials.

Three previous similar deaths had gone unnoticed: there were no signs of violence on the bodies and no indication of unnatural death was found in the homes of the deceased. But the results of new autopsies carried out on the victims confirmed that there were also traces of liquid ecstasy in them.

Following that lead, investigators began to find similarities to the three previous cases. The three other victims were all homosexual men with profiles on said dating application.

At the time of writing this post, the police have already identified a suspect, a man between 20 and 30 years of Colombian origin, who calls himself Carlos in his dating profiles.

I hope they find and arrest the killer as soon as possible, Spanish gay men are totally frightened and shocked.

Monday, May 2, 2022

Mormon university student shows rainbow colors while graduating

Jillian Orr, 28, majored in psychology at BYU in Utah, which is owned by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (LDS), commonly known as the Mormon church.

The university has strict anti-LGBTQ policies enshrined in its Honor Code, which students can be expelled for breaking. For example, requiring that they “live a chaste and virtuous life, including abstaining from any sexual relations outside a marriage between a man and a woman”, and even banning “same-sex romantic behaviour” because it does not “lead to eternal marriage”.

Half-way through her course Jillian, who was raised Mormon, realised that she was bisexual. However, she decided to stay because of the low tuition fees, well-respected psychology department, and the fact that her credits for BYU’s many required Mormon religion classes would not be transferrable to another university.

Ahead of her graduation ceremony, her little sister suggested that she make a statement on stage, and offered to sew a Pride flag to the inside of her gown. She showed herself flashing the inside of her gown to the audience as she crossed the stage.

Jillian wrote after the ceremony: "At BYU it’s against the Honor Code to be in a homosexual relationship. If you are discovered to be dating or just holding hands there are severe consequences. They threaten to take away your degree and kick you out of the university. Students are afraid to be who they are, so they hide out of fear until they get out. I will not hide. I will be seen. In front of the entire school.”

Proud of you!!!

Jillian in front of the entire school

Saturday, April 30, 2022

Top Biden health official Rachel Levine warn of the dangers of state bills to trans youth

Admiral Rachel Levine, the highest-ranking transgender person in the federal government, gave a speech in in Fort Worth at the Out For Health Conference at Texas Christian University, urging physicians-in-training to fight political attacks against young trans people and their families.

Levine said: "Trans youth in particular are being hounded in public and driven to deaths of despair at an alarming rate. Fifty-two percent of all transgender and nonbinary young people in the U.S. seriously contemplated killing themselves in 2020. Think about how many of them thought it was better to die than to put up with any more harassment, scapegoating and intentional abuse."

More than 100 anti-trans bills have been introduced in state legislatures this year, mostly directed at youth; some seek to bar trans student athletes from participating in sports under their gender identity, while others would deny gender-affirming health care to young people. In opinion of Levine, many of these legislative attacks use scientific language to justify their political aims, but it is also being used to drive people to suicide.

LGBTQ youth, especially trans youth, are extremely vulnerable and need support. “We need to empower them because they are at risk,” she concluded.

Friday, April 29, 2022

Spanish government to launch a free LGBTQ helpline


Spanish government is launching a “rainbow phone” line to provide advice for and prevent discrimination against LGBTQ people.

It will incorporate legal assistance with general information on LGBTQ rights, as well as psychological support where possible.

The phone number to be 028, this is symbolic because International Pride Day typically takes place on 28 June each year.

The service is set to be free, accessible in multiple languages and will be available 24/7, all year round.

The helpline is part of a wider attempt from the Spanish government to improve the lives of its LGBTQ citizens by tackling things such as discrimination and homophobic violence.

Spain approved same-sex marriage in 2005, and it is one of the nation tops in the list of countries most accepting of homosexuality according to the ILGA index and according to a Pew Research Center.

Unfortunately, LGBTQ rights activists were warning that attacks on queer people increased in Spain in recent times, under the umbrella of the growth of the far right party VOX.

Gay people in Spain can marry and adopt since 2005

Thursday, April 28, 2022

Canada lifts restrictions on gay men's blood donations


Health Canada approved the request by Canadian Blood Services to end the policy that restricts homosexuals from donating blood for three months after engaging in gay sex. A move Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said was "good news for all Canadians" but had taken too long.

Trudeau said at a news conference the ban should have ended 10 to 15 years ago, but research proving it would not affect the safety of the blood supply had not been done by previous governments.

Trudeau also said his government spent C$5 million dollars on research into the safety aspects of changing the blood donation rules and multiple scientific reports showed the blood supply would continue to be safe.

The research said current risks of contracting HIV from the blood supply, with all samples tested, was estimated to be "very low," at 1 in 20.7 million.

The policy change marks a significant milestone toward a more inclusive blood donation system.

Trudeau announced Canada ending ban on gay men's blood donation, watch it below:

Tuesday, April 26, 2022

YouTuber and Twitch streamer Ranboo comes out

YouTube and Twitch star Ranboo said that while his sexuality is “unlabelled”, he is OK with being called gay. The American streamer joined YouTube in January 2020 and has since amassed over 60 million views.

The YouTuber soon began to trend on Twitter after he posted the message. It came after social media speculation about his sexuality. Taking to his alternative Twitter account a few hours later, the 18-year-old thanked fans for their supportive messages.

“Yo just wanted to say thanks for all the support with everything and tonight lol have been wanting to do that for a while tonight just lined up well,” he wrote.

Ranboo then added: “And for those confused basically I guess I am technically unlabeled as the way I have kinda always gone around life just being attracted to whoever I am attracted to it just so happens that most of them line up with a ‘certain type’ you could say lol am okay with the gay label :)”


With the bf

Sunday, April 24, 2022

My policeman


My Policeman is a romantic drama film directed by Michael Grandage. A take on the 2012 novel of the same name by author Bethan Roberts. It stars Harry Styles, Emma Corrin, and David Dawson.

The film tells the emotional, dramatic story of an English love triangle during a time when queerness was criminalized

Harry Styles stars as a bi policeman named Tom Burgess who marries Marion, played by Emma Corrin, after she falls in love when he teaches her to swim at Brighton beach.

Tom also falling in love with Patrick, played by David Dawson, in a time when same-sex relationships were still illegal. 

The film then catches up with the married couple a few decades later when Tom’s former lover re-enters their life.

Three older actors have also been cast to play Marion, Tom and Patrick in the 90s: Gina McKee as an older Marion, Linus Roache as an older Tom, and Rupert Everett as an older Patrick.

Watch a trailer below:

Friday, April 22, 2022

LGBT+ charity in Russia formally dissolved by the courts

Charitable Foundation Sphere is a human rights organization that, starting from 2011, defends the rights of the LGBT+ community in Russia, fights against systemic homophobia, biphobia and transphobia, and is an expert at creating and coordinating human rights programs and initiatives.

Sphere has been formally dissolved by Kuibyshev District Court judge Tatiana Kuzovkina after the Russian ministry for justice argued that they were carrying out “political activities”.

The ministry claimed one of Sphere’s goals is to change Russian legislation, which is not a permissible charitable goal under federal law. The ministry argued in court that liquidating Sphere was the only way to successfully curb the organisation’s “illegal activities”.

Vitaly Isakov, the lawyer representing Sphere, argued against the move, telling the court that liquidating the charity would have a severe impact on LGBT+ people in Russia, who would find themselves left without any protection.

In a press release, Sphere said this is not the first time human rights groups have been forced to stop operating because of state interference. “In many ways, a similar attempt to liquidate Sphere is the contribution of the ruling structures to negating the entire human rights movement, including the LGBT+ movement".

Russia has become an increasingly hostile place for LGBT+ people.

Support Russian Charitable Foundation Sphere here.

Support the Russian LGBT Network's programs here.

Sign now for the Russian LGBT+ movement!

Wednesday, April 20, 2022

There are no reasons to ban trans women from sports, according to science and experts


Dozens of American states have sought this year to ban trans women from sports while British prime minister Boris Johnson said “biological males” shouldn’t compete against cisgender women.

The vexing debate over trans people kicking a ball or running for a few seconds has increasingly engulfed the minds of lawmakers and pundits.

Yet while research is still scant on the area, advocacy groups and many sports governing bodies generally agree that trans people playing sports is a non-issue.

After all, sport is unfair. Some athletes have natural advantages, such as height, while others have access to better coaching and resources.

For the most part, trans women need to undergo hormone therapy for at least one year to complete. Even then, testosterone, long associated with strength, isn’t even the reason for some performance differences in the first place, studies have suggested.

In this way, last year, the International Olympic Committee released new guidelines that said there is no need for trans women to lower their testosterone to compete against cisgender women.

Doctors, academics, and sports psychologists, meanwhile, told that such bans balloon an apparent problem that doesn’t exist and, in doing so, foster division within sports. They stress that sex can greatly vary women person to person, there is no one way a women’s body can be.

Many who rally to ban trans athletes shout that gender is defined by biological sex. But scientists have long said that biological sex isn’t so straightforward and there is no single biological factor that defines a person’s sex.

Recently, data showed Lia Thomas doesn’t have 
unfair advantage over cisgender women

Monday, April 18, 2022

Sign now for the Russian LGBT+ movement!


Russian LGBT Network is an interregional movement representing various LGBT+ initiatives and activists all across the country. Without it, hundreds of LGBT+ lives wouldn’t have been saved from the anti-LGBT+ crackdown in Chechnya since 2017. 

In over 15 years, since it started its work in 2006, the Russian LGBT Network has been providing legal and psychological assistance to LGBT+ people across the country, supporting various initiatives and organizations, lending emergency assistance in crisis situations, and engaging in monitoring and advocacy. In addition, it promotes public awareness about LGBT+ people and discrimination against them, and makes a significant contribution to overcoming homophobia, biphobia and transphobia in the Russian society.

The Russian LGBT Network and initiatives and activists associated with it have constantly been targeted with threats, provocations and defamation campaigns. The Russian Ministry of Justice claims that the foundation aims at altering the “moral foundations of the Russian Federation” and tries to “bring discord into the Russian society by acting in violation of the country’s Constitution.” The activity of helping LGBT+ people, according to the Ministry, does not align with Russian traditional values.

The liquidation of the organization operating all the Russian LGBT Network’s programs would lead to the termination of all its work, leaving those who rely on their assistance without support. It would also be a clear signal sent by the authorities to the civil society that any LGBT+ activism is taboo.

Support Charitable Foundation Sphere

Support the Russian LGBT Network's programs

Thank you for signing here!!!

Friday, April 15, 2022

A dozen U.S. states propose so-called 'Don't Say Gay' bills


Florida, with Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis, has attracted considerable attention for its “Don't Say Gay” law. It’s not a new legislative notion, these gag laws have swept across the U.S., with similar legislation is appearing in at least a dozen other states. Each bill has its own particular language, let’s see how several states are approaching this issue.

In Alabama, with Republican Gov. Kay Ivey, has a bathroom bill dealling with opposite genders wanting to use opposite bathrooms. It was amended to include language declaring that anyone teaching in grades K-5 shall not engage in classroom discussion or provide classroom instruction regarding sexual orientation or gender identity that is not age appropriate or developmentally appropriate. In this law, "engage" is a problem word, suggesting that even if students bring the topics up, teachers should refuse to continue the discussion.

In Georgia, with Republican Gov. Brian P. Kemp, was promoted a bill forbiding schools to promote, compel or encourage classroom of sexual orientation or gender identity in primary grade levels, the bill sought to extend these prohibitions to any private or non-public schools that receive state money.

In Indiana, Kentucky, Missouri and Oklahoma the bills include a similar clause: "A student enrolled at a state educational institution shall not be required to engage in any form of mandatory gender or sexual diversity training or counseling".

In Iowa, with Republican Gov. Kim Reynolds, the bill bans any instruction relating to gender identity from kindergarten classes. In grades 1 through 6, such instruction may only be provided with parental consent. Iowa defines gender identity as a gender-related identity of a person, regardless of the person’s assigned sex at birth.

In Ohio, with Republican Gov. Mike DeWine, the bill prohibits any curriculum or instructional materials on sexual orientation or gender identity. It goes further by also prohibiting any such instruction for grades 4-12 that is not age-appropriate or developmentally appropriate. 

In South Carolina, with Republican Gov. Henry McMaster, the bill prohibits requiring an individual to affirm, accept, adopt, or adhere to concepts including the existence of genders other than male and female, gender fluidity, nonbinary pronouns, and that race and sex are social constructs. It also says that state-funded entities may not.

And Tennessee's bill, with Republican Gov. Bill Lee, declares no public or charter school in state will not be allowed to use textbooks or instructional materials that promote, normalize, support, or address lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, or transgender (LGBT) issues or lifestyle.

Biden’s Administration issued a strong statement against these legislations. Remember all of you decide with your vote.

Florida Gov. DeSantis is one of the Republican 
governors who supports these legislations

Tuesday, April 12, 2022

'Take Me Out' backs to Broadway

Take Me Out is a play by American playwright Richard Greenberg. It made its Broadway debut on February 27, 2003 at the Walter Kerr Theatre, where it ran for 355 performances and won the 2003 Tony Award for Best Play.

At the time of the writing of this play no Major League Baseball player had ever come out to the public during his career. That remains the case 20 years later, although a growing number of professional athletes in other sports have cracked open the closet door. This play is the dramatic exploration of what such an event might be like.

When Darren Lemming, the star center fielder for the Empires, comes out of the closet, the reception off the field reveals a barrage of long-held unspoken prejudices. Facing some hostile teammates and fraught friendships, Darren is forced to contend with the challenges of being a gay person of color within the confines of a classic American institution. As the Empires struggle to rally toward a championship season, the players and their fans begin to question tradition, their loyalties, and the price of victory.

Now, a Broadway revival, directed by Scott Ellis, opened at the Hayes Theater on April 4, 2022. It was originally scheduled to open on April 23, 2020. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the show suspended production. The cast is made up of Jesse Williams, Jesse Tyler Ferguson and Patrick J. Adams.

What Take Me Out does right is highlight how sportsmen, entrenched in a business that boasts the traditional expectations of masculinity, respond to a team member’s homosexuality. The reactions move from open support to microaggressions to downright hostility. Slow to bat, this play’s second act serves as its home run. Inside the team showers, beautifully crafted by David Rockwell, a place of vulnerability (and nudity) marks the show’s most memorable turning point. 

Monday, April 11, 2022

The LGBTQ100 index beats the S&P500

It’s not easy to beat the untouchable S&P500, but some indices do. This is the case of the LGBTQ100, a stock market indicator that includes the 100 US firms with the best practices and benefits for LGBTQ workers. 

Among the pillars to enter the index are non-discrimination policies, comparable benefits for LGBTQ families and inclusive culture. Candidate constituent companies are evaluated on key factors by a representative group of the LGBTQ community.

Since December 31, 2014, the LGBTQ100 has been revalued by 177% as collected Bloomberg. In the same period, S&P500 up 118%. The annualized return of the index queer it stands at 15% since its launch, compared to 11% for the S&P500.

Which companies are part of this indicator? Most of its heavy hitters are household names to investors: Tesla weights 4%, followed by AppleAmazon, Microsoft and cloud technology firm ServiceNow, with weights of 3% or more.

If, instead of looking at the ones that weigh the most, we focus on those that obtain the best scores in ESG (environmental, social and good governance) issues, the ones that stand out are CBRE Group, Adobe, Nvidia, Automatic Data and again Microsoft. 

Other interesting fact about diversity is the percentage of employees who belong to a social minority. It is only available to 28 of the 100 members of the LGBTQ100, and the first is Marriott International, with 67%. It is followed by Alphabet and the business services firm Iron Mountain, with 52%; the Target department store group, with 50% and Servicenow, with 44%.


Index evolution

Sunday, April 10, 2022

Poland's LGBT+ Film Festival celebrates its 13th edition

LGBT+ Film Festival Poland is one of the most important events on the cultural map of Central and Eastern Europe, presenting a wide variety of queer cinema which brings us closer to building a world of freedom and equality. 

Divided into 5 sections (features, documentaries, animated films, short films and classics), it explores non-normative identities through the lenses of filmmakers from around the globe.

The 13th edition of the festival will be held in a hybrid form; the physical screenings will be held in 8 Polish cities between April 22-29, 2022 and then proceed online for 14 days, geoblocked to Poland:

WARSZAWA – KinoGram/Fabryka Norblina, April 22-29

BYDGOSZCZ – MCK/Kino Orzeł, April 22-29

KONIN – Kino Kameralne/CKiS, April 22-24

POZNAŃ – Kino Pałacowe/CKZ, April 22-28

WROCŁAW – Kino Nowe Horyzonty, April 22-28

ŁÓDŹ – Kino Bodo, April 23-28

GDAŃSK – Kino Kameralne Cafe, April 23-29

KRAKÓW – Kino Pod Baranami, May 9-15


You can watch some repertoire's trailers and shorts below:

Official trailer

Dating Amber

My Father is My Mother's Brother