Around the world, the 20th of November each year is set aside to remember those who have died as a result of anti-transgender hatred or prejudice.
It’s a day of reflection as we remember people we have lost. But it can also be a day of celebration, awareness and renewal, as our communities join together in solidarity and hope for a better future.
Thursday 20 November 2014 is the 16th annual Transgender Day of Remembrance. The idea began in America back in the late ‘90s following the violent unsolved murder of trans woman Rita Hester, and the day is now marked in more than 20 countries across the world, including here in Australia.
The latest figures from Transgender Europe’s Trans Murder Monitoring project list 226 reported killings of trans people in the 12 months to October 2014. The update shows reports of murdered trans people in 28 countries in the last 12 months, with the majority of 113 from Brazil.
Here in Australia, a local survey by The Gender Centre in 2012 found that 51% had experienced a transphobic incident directed at themselves – either verbal abuse, physical abuse or discrimination. But only 22% had reported the incident to the authorities, as many feared their concerns would not be taken seriously, and others did not want to be ‘outed’ in a police report
A Councillor in Melbourne’s City of Casey is pushing ahead with a motion tonight which, if successful, would affectively ban the municipality from doing anything even remotely LGBTI-related.
Rise Up Australia party member Rosalie Crestani’s motion describes sexual orientation as a “private issue” and work with LGBTI issues as “special treatment” which goes against the Council’s obligation to “serve all residents equally.”
A federal advisory committee on Thursday recommended for the first time that the U.S. soften its ban on blood donations from gay men.
Under the new recommendations, made by the U.S. Health and Human Services' Advisory Committee on Blood and Tissue Safety and Availability, gay men would be able to donate blood after a year of abstinence. Under the current rules, men who have had sex with other men are essentially banned for life from donating blood.
SAME-sex couples in NSW who married overseas can now have their marital status recognised under the NSW Relationships Register.
The news comes after Sydney state independent MP Alex Greenwich won government support to allow this, in response to his Relationships Register Amendment (Recognition of Same-sex and Gender-diverse Relationships) Bill 2014.
Under the amendments, same sex couples who married overseas can now reflect their marital status on relevant forms.
It also means they no longer have to declare that they are “not married”.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has a firm view on homosexuality and gay marriage. “Marriage between a man and a woman is essential to the Creator's plan,” the church declares on its website. “The Church’s doctrinal position is clear: Sexual activity should only occur between a man and a woman who are married.”
But there’s a catch: LDS doctrine is subject to sudden reversals. While other churches cling to the Bible, Mormons believe new revelations can overthrow past injunctions, including those written in scripture. “Nowhere does the Bible proclaim that all revelations from God would be gathered into a single volume to be forever closed,” the church contends.
G20 is here and Brisbane’s LGBT community is leading the party. One of the most striking images in the river city right now is the very colourful 3-metre high, 25-metre long Brisbane sign at South Bank which represents the different communities and groups which make up our wider community. The big pink and sparkly B represents the contribution that our local LGBT culture offers Brisbane with Brisbane Pride Festival representatives contributing to its design. Our B will be the first letter of the sign on display to over 3000 media as the spotlight shines on Brisbane for the G20 Summit. #G20Cultural
Sexuality isn’t a choice. So it may seem confusing to some when people say they don’t label their sexuality or feel that their sexuality is fluid.
But being sexually fluid doesn’t mean a person is confused. For a person to know and accept their sexuality as fluid, they must be self-aware.
This isn’t to say that there aren’t some people, like barsexuals, who use the idea of sexual fluidity to play at homosexuality without having to deal with the stigma. But this article isn’t about them.
This article is about those who identify as bi, pan, queer, no labels, genderqueer, or any other identity that goes beyond the sexual identities normally covered by “gay” and “straight”.
I’ve known plenty of couples who were the same position when they first got together. Though it was a bit awkward at first, their feelings for each other forced them to jump the hump and discover new boundaries in their sex life. It taught them to be more submissive, more dominant, more connected. In other words, it bonded them.
Okay, so you get that gender identity is different from gender expression, which is different from sexual orientation. You know the difference between transsexual, transgender, gender queer, gender fluid, and asexual. You know that not everyone wants “the surgery,” and not to ask if they do.
You proudly claim the mantle of transgender ally. But are you one?
Some recent conversations I’ve had have revealed prevalent myths and misconceptions about transgender people that we need to move beyond. Simple definitions aren’t enough: we need to be talking about lived realities.
So here’s your Trans 201 lesson on 10 common misconceptions.
Nicole clutches her phone, flops down on the couch next to her mother, and squeals, “Oh my God!” She’s just learned that a boy she met online is someone she might have known in preschool. Her mother Jenn looks skeptical. “How would he know it’s you?” she asks. Nicole tells a complicated tale involving a picture and shared acquaintances. Her excitement renders the story incomprehensible to all except perhaps other 13-year-olds.
Jenn isn’t convinced. “But how would he know it’s you?” she repeats. Nicole loses interest in explaining herself and goes back to her phone without ever acknowledging what her mother is really asking. How would the boy have recognized Nicole, a pretty eighth grader with long, blond, fuchsia-streaked hair, as a former classmate? Back then, Nicole was a little boy named Nicolas.
Senior NSW Liberal MP Don Harwin has revealed he is gay in a speech to the NSW Legislative Council, crediting his private struggles with giving him the determination needed to succeed in Parliament.
The president of the upper house made the revelation in a Christmas message on the last sitting day of Parliament for the year on Thursday. He joins just a handful of openly gay NSW MPs, including Labor's Penny Sharpe and Helen Westwood, Liberal Bruce Notley-Smith and independent Alex Greenwich.
With rouged lips, long hair and a strut that would give Naomi Campbell pause, Dave Williams, 47, works the 75-foot runway that stretches between crowded rows of green chipped-paint bunk beds at the L.A. County Sheriff’s Men’s Central Jail.
Williams, a transgender inmate known on the inside as Yah Yah, glides past a hooting and hollering crowd of her fellow gay and transgender inmates, perched atop their beds for a prime view. She’s flaunting a white cotton halter-top baby-doll dress and matching white Cinderella gloves, hand-crafted for her by one of the trans women inside this infamously tough downtown L.A. jail.
An equal sign is often used as a symbol for the LGBT community, but I believe a pyramid is a more appropriate image. And at the top of the social hierarchy stands the idealized gay white man, and it will probably never change.
Married same-sex couples and widowers in Ohio file the first of four petitions expected over the coming days asking the high court to resolve issues about marriage and marriage recognition. Update: Tennessee same-sex couples also filed their request with the Supreme Court on Friday.
Sundance Selects has acquired North American Rights to David Thorpe's debut "Do I Sound Gay?" ahead of its US premiere at DOC NYC on November 13. This documentary set at the intertwines of speech and sexual identity premiered to applause at Toronto this year, with THR calling it a "light-hearted but not at all frivolous non-fiction film."
Movies and popular culture have an indelible impact on developing mindsets. The significance can even be more profound when you identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT), given that representation of the community in Hollywood is still limited.
Still, there have been some true cinematic milestones portraying LGBT lifestyles over the years. "Boys Don't Cry," "Brokeback Mountain" and "Milk" have nabbed Oscars, while "Velvet Goldmine" and "A Beautiful Thing" enjoy cult followings among queer audiences and beyond.
We asked the HuffPost Gay Voices editorial team as well as our readers to name the movies which shaped the way they felt about themselves as LGBT people. We also added a few titles ("A League of Their Own," "Steel Magnolias") that may not feature prominent LGBT plotlines if we felt the viewer made a sufficient case for its inclusion.
Take a look at 22 movies that changed the way we felt about ourselves as LGBT people below.
It’s not easy being gay, especially in the 79 or so countries where it’s illegal.
Around the world, a wide range of laws dictate whether gay people can live openly or whether they must exist underground, deny their desires, or hide their identity for fear of persecution. Some of these laws put lives in danger—as in some Nigerian states, where people found guilty of homosexuality can be stoned to death. Other countries impose discriminatory restrictions on people’s ability to live as fully as they might like—as in Chile, where same-sex couples have legal recognition but are barred from adopting children.
This map shows the danger spots around the world for people who are not heterosexual.
Singapore’s Court of Appeal recently upheld the law criminalizing sex between men, a ruling the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) community in Asia sees as part of a growing conservative trend in the region. For example, in 2013 the Supreme Court of India overturned the 2009 decision of the Delhi High Court to strike down a 150-year-old law criminalizing same-sex sexual conduct. In Singapore, men who commit acts of “gross indecency” with other men can face up to two years in jail.
Richard Tisei, a candidate for an open House seat in northeastern Massachusetts, and Carl DeMaio, the challenger to a Democrat representative in San Diego, could have been the first openly gay Republicans in Congress.
Tisei's hopes were dashed early on election night as his Democratic opponent, an Iraq War veteran 16 years his junior, swept to victory in the blue state, which hasn't sent a Republican to the House in nearly 20 years. On the other side of the country, DeMaio held on in his tight Southern California race until Sunday, when he conceded to Democratic Rep. Scott Peters.
It could be a sign that the Republican Party's much-hyped inclusion efforts are at an impasse, that the social-conservative base rejects these candidates while the party establishment throws its cash behind them. But despite the surface-level optics, 2014 could go down as a net win for Republican gay-rights champions.