I had no idea what was going on as I listened to NPR in perilous rush-hour traffic a few days back: I almost drove into the black Suburban in front of me in my perplexed state. I marveled at the mention of both the Middle East and homosexuality in the same byline. Recently with the ironically named Jasmine Revolution, one only heard about the chanting droves in Tahrir Square in Cairo, and the unprecedented outpouring of filial devotion in barricaded hubs of so-called “national telepathy,” as a protester interviewed in The New Yorker put it. In the very same article, Wendell Steavenson describes the unique amalgamation of socially and economically disparate people in a famously stratified part of the world:
Zach Wahls is a nineteen-year-old Engineering student at the University of Iowa. He is also a staunch gay-rights advocate who bravely and eloquently testified before the Iowa House of Representatives on behalf of his mothers, the video of which currently has over 1.7 million views.
Zach graciously agreed to answer some questions for the FBomb, and, believe me, if you don’t already have a crush on him, you’re about to.
You have been called the new “poster-child for straight allies who support marriage equality.” How do you feel about this title?
To be honest, I really don’t like being thought of as a “straight ally,” so to speak, because it implies that I’m somehow separate from the community, which is simply not the case. Gay rights are my rights as …
According to a recent report by ActionAid – an international NGO – there’s a rising, incredibly homophobic and violent trend amongst South Africans. In addition to waves of homophobic attacks and murders in townships like Johannesburg and Cape Town, South African lesbians are the victims of “corrective” rape.
“Corrective rape” is the practice of a heterosexual man raping a lesbian with the intent of “turning” her heterosexual. As if the act of rape weren’t enough, many of these women experience after effects of contracting HIV/AIDS and lasting psychological trauma, including a rise in depression and suicide attempts.
What’s even more frustrating than the occurrence of Corrective Rape is the South African government’s complete unwillingness to act on behalf of the victims. South Africa’s national prosecuting authority, …
11 for ’11: Eleven Ways to Fight for Human Rights and Social Justice in 2011
Human rights org Breakthrough has announced eleven ways that individuals can help fight for human rights in 2011, recommending eleven unique actions, many supported by activist and nonprofit organizations. The Breakthrough eleven for eleven range from encouraging acceptance and tolerance among children, to helping to end violence against women, to participating in Breakthrough’s video and Twitter contest, I AM THIS LAND, looking for new visions of a more tolerant and accepting America, going on now atwww.iamthisland.org.
The Breakthrough eleven for eleven are below:
1. Read for Good: Take a cue from Reading to End Racism of Colorado and talk to your local library about volunteering to host a reading group for kids. Choose books with a positive message of acceptance and encourage dialogue about their experiences.…
how many other out lesbians in the mainstream media can you even think of?
Recently, my high school Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) had an unofficial “Big Gay Movie Day.” It was wonderful. I got to spend time with my fabulous, accepting friends and drink copious amounts of Mountain Dew. But there was something about it that disappointed me.
The first movie we watched was the Rocky Horror Picture Show. Now, while Dr. Frank-n-Furter is a wonderful, awkward, completely mad transvestite, he’s a man. A terrific, diabolical man, but still. A man.
Once we had got all of our giggling and time-warping out of the way, we moved on to a more serious movie, Prayers for Bobby. Prayers for Bobby is a phenomenal and touching movie about religious hatred and …
As a senior in high school, I am less than ecstatic about senior year and its attendant rites. That’s right: it’s prom time.
It’s a fortuitous year to be queer and prom-bound, as Constance McMillen has brought the issue to the forefront of America’s pop culturally-inclined social consciousness. You may have heard this already: McMillen asked to take her girlfriend to prom. School went nuts, canceled their prom, then sent Constance to a fake prom with other excluded kids while the rest of the class partied in secret. The one-two punch of bigotry and cruelty sent buzz not just through the gay community but the media at large. Impassioned Facebook groups such as “Let Constance Take Her Girlfriend to Prom!” sprouted up, along …
Constance McMillen: I’m Sorry People Where You Live Seriously Suck
As if things don't suck enough for Constance McMillen in Itawamba County, where she was initially banned from her prom because she wanted to NOT have to hide the fact that she's gay and bring her girlfriend as her date...they just got a little worse. In case you missed the first post about Constance McMillen, here's her appearance on the Ellen DeGeneres show to catch you up:
So, when things were looking like they might turn around the fine people of Itawamba decided that that couldn't possibly happen. Clearly, the outrage of such OFFENSIVENESS as a gay couple (21st century people...21st century) called for the parents to get involved and do something truly heinous.
I live in an extremely Republican environment, and I identify as a Democrat. I am an extremely involved member in my Young Democrats Club at my school. I was in the process of letting my mother know that I was campaigning for our upcoming local elections, and my stepdad cut me off and started arguing with me.
One of the things we argued about was gay rights. I’m not homosexual, but I still don’t believe that heterosexuals have the right to tell others they can’t be gay. So with my quick wit, I won the argument. But then my stepdad asks, “Who’s the boy?”
I said, “There isn’t one.” (Because there isn’t.)
And he goes, “Well, when I was in high school, girls joined clubs to get the boy’s …