‘m sitting in a room in Northern Ireland opposite a man who says he offers “talking therapy” to people who don’t want to be gay. And I cannot help feeling worried – despite all the evidence I’ve read to the contrary, a tiny part of me believes that he may actually convince me that I can choose to stop being gay.
The man in front of me is Mike Davidson, he’s originally from New Zealand and he’s invited me into his home, about 30 minutes outside Belfast. It’s in a very quiet close of small houses tucked away off a side road, the type of place where everyone knows your business. Do his neighbours know what happens here? I start to feel a little uneasy. It reminds me of my home town Eastbourne and of being in the closet, hiding my secrets.
That doesn’t mean the fight is won though, and Icelandic women continue the battle for true equality – not just for women, but for the LGBT community too. Despite a reputation for being one of the most progressive nations towards LGBT people, Iceland has in fact not always gone as far as it could. A recent bill – a form of self-identification for trans people – has moved the country further along. The prime minister of Iceland, Katrín Jakobsdóttir, was the driving force. For her, it was a way to ensure that Iceland was again setting an example for the world. “Well, you could say that we have been running a little bit behind, but now with this legislation we’re actually again at the front. So it took some time I think for this small group of people to actually get heard.”
In a federal lawsuit filed yesterday, a group of LGBTQ+ video creators claims YouTube discriminates against their content. The group alleges that YouTube suppresses their videos, restricts their ability to monetize their channels and enforces its policies unevenly, giving more leeway to producers with large audiences. According to The Washington Post, the suit argues that YouTube deploys “unlawful content regulation, distribution, and monetization practices that stigmatize, restrict, block, demonetize, and financially harm the LGBT Plaintiffs and the greater LGBT Community.”
IMDb will allow people in the entertainment industry to remove their birth names from the site. The move follows criticism from several LGBTQ+ groups for continuing to publish the birth names of transgender people in the industry without their consent (an act known as deadnaming).
When is the last time you asked a casual acquaintance—or better yet, a stranger!—the details about how their baby was conceived? You probably wouldn’t go up to the random heterosexual couple ahead of you in the grocery store checkout line and request a full conception play-by-play. But same-sex parents find themselves barraged with inappropriate questions about something incredibly private to them all the time. People somehow feel it’s okay to quench their curiosity about how they built their family.
Just because a kid has two moms or two dads does not mean you can pile on the invasive questions. Even if you think you mean well, here’s what you should not be asking.
This August marks the 25th anniversary of the debut of My So-Called Life, the short-lived but influential teen drama that was also one of the first network shows to have a gay character as a series regular. Rickie Vasquez (Wilson Cruz) faced some of the same adolescent woes as his peers Angela Chase (Claire Danes) and Rayanne Graff (A.J. Langer), but as an out teen, he also faced homophobia at home and school. Despite the show’s limited run, Rickie became a beacon for queer teen viewers, especially queer teens of color who’d waited a long time to see themselves on TV.
Last week, Mark Chambers, the mayor of Carbon Hill, Alabama, shared an image on his Facebook page that read, in all-caps, “WE LIVE IN A SOCIETY WHERE HOMOSEXUALS LECTURE US ON MORALS, TRANSVESTITES LECTURE US ON HUMAN BIOLOGY, BABY KILLERS LECTURE US ON HUMAN RIGHTS AND SOCIALISTS LECTURE US ON ECONOMICS.”
SOUNDS LIKE AN OKAY WORLD TO ME!
In case the post wasn’t clear enough on just where he stands on the issue of LGBT rights (or abortion, or socialism), after a friend commented that it “will take a revolution” to change society, Chambers then replied, “The only way to change it would be to kill the problem out. I know it’s bad to say but with out killing them out there’s no way to fix it.”
As a recently out gay woman, I was a little unsure at first about how to talk with my kids about LGBTQ+ topics. But, even before I accepted my identity and told my family I was gay, having these conversations was something that was important to me. I wanted my kids to be allies, not just for me, but for the queer community at large. I also wanted to make it clear to them that if they fall anywhere within the beautiful LGBTQ+ rainbow, I will accept and love them for who they are.
Still, I understand that if you’re not surrounded by queer folks, it can feel arbitrary or forced to suddenly start talking to your kids about “gay” topics. It helps to keep in mind, though, that you are talking about diversity of love and gender expression. We can all relate to being true to ourselves, right? But what if you don’t really know what to say? What if you yourself feel under-informed? And how the heck does one even begin to explain all of this to a kid?
Three mysterious deaths and dozens of violent attacks on butch lesbians, or camionas, have put lesbians in Chile’s Fifth region on red alert.
Nicole Saavedra Bahamondes’ family knew she was not a morning person.
Especially at weekends, the 23-year-old did not leave her bedroom early – and she knew her mother wouldn’t disturb her in her cosy bed, still laden with the cuddly toys from her childhood.
At about 11:00 on a Saturday, Nicole would usually emerge and walk slowly to the kitchen in search of coffee.
She would blearily exchange words with her mother, Olga Bahamondes, giving monosyllabic answers to any questions about the night before.
Two women say they were subjected to a homophobic attack and left covered in blood after refusing to kiss on a bus.
Melania Geymonat, 28, said the attack on her and partner Chris happened on the top deck of a London night bus as they were travelling to Camden Town.
A group of young men began harassing them when they discovered the women were a couple, asking them to kiss while making sexual gestures.
Four male teenagers aged between 15 and 18 have been arrested.
They are being questioned on suspicion of robbery and aggravated grievous bodily harm.