Miss Spain first Transgender Woman in the Ms. Universe Contest

Miss Spain

Angela Ponce, better known as the reigning Miss Spain, didn’t win the Miss Universe pageant Sunday.
But she didn’t seem to mind.

Simply by representing her country this year, Ponce became the first transgender woman to compete in Miss Universe. After the preliminary rounds, the 27-year-old model said it was “an honor and pride” to be part of the history of the pageant.

“This is for you, for those who have no visibility, no voice, because we all deserve a world of respect, inclusion and freedom,” Ponce wrote on Instagram on Friday. “And today I am here, proudly representing my nation, all women and human rights.”

Though Miss Universe – and other beauty pageants – have undergone scrutiny (and changes) in recent years to avoid objectifying women, Ponce said she embraced the competition as a chance to fulfill not only her personal ambitions but to be an ambassador for Spanish culture.

Queen of Ethiopia

Hi there,

We are going to have to talk straight to get through this.

This is causing me tremendous emotional stress, and I can’t go on like this.

You plan the whole thing, tell me what and when to do it. If a motel is preferred, we will go there. Plan it to your schedule.

I will stay ‘clean’, till then, because I want to be me.

Maybe meeting at the motel on s congress south of here. It’s do or die now.

Tell me what you want me to be there with, and I will. It’s now Sunday, so I will be able to have anything. Lets do this, I beg you. Tell me what to do, and I will. Period. Name your price. i will not be shy. Don’t you either.

You can comment here. Noone who reads this site knows anything about this. I need a yes or no, and what if yes.

Not a Single Woman Present

Not a Single Woman Present

not a single woman present

Well…..there wasn’t a single woman who decided Roe v. Wade, but we don’t hear women complaining about men making that decision for them..
Or how about the 19th amendment? Not one woman there either. Decided entirely by men…heck, mostly WHITE *gasp!*?men for that matter.

You’re appalling. Women protested and marched for the right to make their own decisions regarding their bodies, and it wasn’t that long ago. To think that in this day and age, another woman would actually think that there should be no female representatives present to add facts, and enthusiastically show their ignorance is mind blowing. Have you ever had an independent thought?

Also, during Roe Vs. Wade there weren’t a bunch of women in congress, nor were women allowed to vote until around the same time too. Nor were there blacks. Those things were decided because of mass protests and live lost for that cause. But hey, keep proving that you’re a white privileged, ignorant, bubble head that doesn’t have to do much in life to get by,

I hear and see women protesting all the time about men making the decision for women. Why do you say that you don’t hear women “complaining.” It’s called protesting not “complaining.” I am pro-choice. That means if a women gets pregnant is solely her right and choice as to how that continues.

I don’t see how people who claim to be so inclusive can be SO judgmental based on nothing but an insignificant comparison and my skin color, sex, sexual orientation, or religion.

I am a crazy bitch, not a stupid twat.

The words below were written by a black les friend of mine.

I did judge your character. It sucks. What you fail to realize is that the reason this country is an abomination is we’ve had nothing but white men as a majority of the rule makers.

But your empty head can’t wrap your mind around THAT. I’m 52, I’m tired of white privileged idiots like you that think “It’s been good enough for me so far, let the white guys decide, I’m sure they’ll be fair to all”.

Because you can’t understand WHY people would be upset that a group of people deciding their fate has no way of relating to it, have discriminated throughout time and thus far have disregarded women as second class. I based my opinion of you from what you wrote, and your station in life and that you’re obviously clueless about the problems facing others today. You don’t want to face the fact that life is easier for you than someone that isn’t white. Don’t expect everyone to coddle you like Daddy and tell you that you’re special – you aren’t.

By the way, if you weren’t white, your words would be different.

I’m a Free Ass Mother Fucker

Janelle Monae

Janelle Monae arrives at the Los Angeles premiere of ‘Moonlight’ at the DGA Theater in Los Angele

A free-ass mother fucker

Janelle Monae used to only hint at her sexuality through meta­phors and alter egos, said Brittany Spanos in Rolling Stone. Now the singer and actress is speaking openly about being pansexual, or, as she puts it, “a free-ass motherf—er:’

For years, Mo nae says, she hid behind a robotic public persona-whose response to dating questions was “I only date androids” -to stop people pry­ing into her personal life.

It also meant she didn’t have to come out to her sprawling, strict Baptist family. Growing up in Kansas City, Monae heard some relatives say they believed that “all gay people are going to hell:’

Janelle Monae

Today, not all members of her large family-“! got 50 first cousins!” -know about her romantic life, but they have likely all seen her wear sheer pants and share a lollipop with Tessa Thompson, her rumored girlfriend, in a recent, music video.

“I literally do not have time;’ she says with a laugh, “to hold a town-hall meeting with my family and be like, ‘News flash!”‘ Mom1e, 32, hopes that by publicly coming out now, she can help fans who might be struggling with their own sexuality.

“I want girls and boys who are feeling ostracized to say “F That!!!:

Court Upholds Transgender Teen’s Civil Rights


A federal judge in Virginia sided Tuesday with a trans gender teenager who spent most of his high school years fighting to use the boys’ bathroom in a case that stood at the center of the national fight for transgender student rights.

The judge said the school board that passed bathroom restrictions violated the teen’s constitutional rights.

Gavin Grimm, 19, sued the Gloucester County School Board after it passed a policy requiring students to use the bathrooms that aligned with their “biological gender.”

Grimm, who was assigned the gender female at birth, told his classmates he was transgender his sophomore year and began using the boys’ bathroom. When parents learned of it, they protested to the school board, which passed the restrictions.

Gavin Grimm, 19, sued the Glouchester County School Board after it passed a policy requiring students to use restrooms aligned with their “biological gender.” A judge on Tuesday found the restrictions violated the teen’s constitutional rights. ASSOCIATED PRESS 2016. The decision comes as schools, lawmakers and courts wrestle with how to accommodate students whose gender identity conflicts with the sex on their birth certificate.

Grimm argued the restriction violated Title IX, which prohibits sex discrimination in schools that receive federal funds. The Obama administration backed him, filing briefs supporting his case. But a federal judge in 2015 denied the teen’s request for a court order so he could use the boys’ bathroom.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit ruled in Grimm’s favor, deferring to the Obama administration’s argument that bathroom restrictions for trans gender students violated Title IX. Soon after, the Education Department issued guidance directing all public schools to allow students to use bathrooms in accordance with their gender identity, even when it conflicted with the sex on their birth certificate.

Grimm’s case was appealed to the Sup re me Court by the school board, and the court was set to hear it in spring 2017.

The move infuriated conservatives and several states sued to overturn the Education Department guidance. After President Donald Trump took office, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos and Attorney General Jeff Sessions rescinded the guidance.

The Supreme Court sent Grimm’s case back to a lower federal court after the Trump administration reversed the guidance on transgender student rights.

Transgender Boy’s Bathroom Struggle – Maryland

Max Brennan, 16, sits with his parents, Larry and Lyn. Max is transgender and his family filed a lawsuit when he was prohibited from using the boys locker room at his school. Brennan is an honor student and member of the marching band.



Transgender Boy Max Brennan

Lynn and Larry Brennan’s oldest child could have remained anonymous, just three initials in federal court papers accusing the local school system of discrimination. But their son was done with secrets, and the pretending that sickened him in those dark days after puberty hit.

Instead, the Brennan’s 16-year-old — honor-roll student, marching-band member and rule follower — is out front trying to rewrite the rules at his high school on Maryland’s Eastern Shore.

Sophomore MAB — Max Alexander Brennan — is pressing to open doors to the boys’ locker room in the latest drive for transgender rights. “It makes me sound more rebellious than I am,” Brennan said at home in St. Michaels, his chocolate Labrador in his lap.

“I’m just a teenager in this small town, in this small state. … If I put my name out there, it makes it more personal,” he said.

Brennan’s case is moving ahead after a federal judge in Baltimore ruled in March that transgender students are protected by federal law from discrimination and found for the first time that Maryland’s constit country about the treatment of transgender and non-transgender students in the already awkward realm of high school locker rooms.
A federal appeals court in Pennsylvania takes up the case next month of a non transgender student who says his privacy rights were violated when officials allowed a transgender boy to change in the boys’ facilities.

On the flip side, a pending Florida case involves a transgender boy banished from the boys’ restroom after the school received an anonymous complaint. Withindaysoftheruling in Baltimore in Brennan’s case, the schools superintendent in Talbot County, Maryland, said Brennan could use the boys’ locker room. The two paragraph letter said the school board was granting access voluntarily, not settling the legal case or making the formal policy change that Brennan was seeking.

Brennan wants a guarantee that locker room access will not be revoked for him or others and that if the board changes its mind, there will be consequences. The decision in the Gavin Grimm case enabled Brennan to use a boys’ restroom at school, but he still had to use a unisex restroom as his private locker room. Going there to change for soccer practice meant missing out on the camaraderie of jokes and chatter among his junior varsity teammates.

Going there to change for gym class meant having to explain to substitute teachers why he was late. “It was forcing me to out myself to people I didn’t know and to make them see me or treat me differently,” Brennan said.

In court papers, school officials have said they must look out for all students, who have a right to “bodily privacy” and should not be forced to undress in front of the opposite biological sex. A video made by the district in the St. Michael’ s Middle High School locker room and submitted in court showed the were no privacy partitions.

Schools Superintendent Kelly Griffith declined to be interviewed about Brennan’s case because the lawsuit continues. But in an email, she said, the board “recognizes that gender identity issues involve serious and important considerations for individual students and their families. We recognize that no two students are alike.”
As for locker rooms, she added, “We will be making decisions on a case by case basis.” [As it should be!]

Brennan, the oldest of three, was raised as a girl [biologically was. Some angel texting or something and fucked things up]. An easygoing kid, he fought wearing dresses and was more interested in his two brothers’ trucks and trains than Barbie dolls, his parents said. The family moved seven years ago from New Jersey to Maryland’s Eastern Shore, attracted to the schools and quaint waterfront town that draws Washington, D.C.-area transplants and vacationers.

By sixth grade, Brennan knew he was a boy. The lie of living life as a girl made him physically ill, he said in court papers, and increasingly, he kept to himself, sliding into deep despair.

A therapist diagnosed Brennan’s feelings as gender dysphoria. His parents learned about it after Larry Brennan found a draft of a letter Brennan had crafted to tell his parents in essence: “I am a boy.”

His mother, an occupational therapist, mourned the daughter she thought she had and was nervous about Brennan’s safety. His father, who works in real estate, initially thought his child was just confused. [Quit clouding the issue with facts, mom!] The family quickly rallied behind Brennan, whose mood slowly improved. He legally changed his name and birth certificate. His younger brothers, now 14 and 11, helped choose the name Max. He began weekly testosterone shots and last year had a double mastectomy. [Oh that hurts me to hear that!]

“I had this secret the whole time, and I could finally let it go,” said the once withdrawn Brennan, who had a leading role in the spring performance of “James and the Giant Peach” and dreams of studying theater or psychology in college in New York.

At the start of seventh grade, the family talked with school officials, who were compassionate and supportive of Brennan. The principal organized a presentation for teachers. With the principal, the family made plans for Brennan to go public on his 13th birthday and to begin using a unisex bathroom in the nurse’s office.

Students began calling their classmate by his new name. A pronoun occasionally got mixed up unintentionally, [used to that, but you are no longer on my good side.] but it was understandable in a class of about 60, most of whom had known Brennan for years as a girl.

As eighth grade approached, Brennan said he was ready to use the facilities designated for boys. The day before the school year started, though, his mother had to deliver a setback. The school board insisted that Brennan continue to use the private, unisex bathroom or the girls’ restrooms and locker room, court papers show, and later explained its “obligation to consider the rights of all of its students.”

Brennan’s parents consulted lawyers for the first time, and at school, Brennan mostly avoided the restroom. It was humiliating, he said in court filings, recalling “weird looks” from other students when he ducked into gender-neutral facilities no other students used.

He never stepped into the girls’ locker room. The girls would have complained, Brennan said, his cheeks flushing even now at that scenario. [Had the anatomy, but it obviously was not a girl.]

That spring of 2016, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit, which hears cases from Virginia and Maryland, sided with Gavin Grimm, and the Talbot County superintendent announced in a letter to parents that the board had to follow the court’s directive.

Brennan could use the boys’ restroom. The change prompted some public complaints, including a call for the superintendent to resign, a letter of protest and testimony from three people at a board meeting, including a local pastor concerned about the safety and privacy of non-transgender students.

But the locker room was still off limits, and Brennan went to court with the help of FreeState Justice, a step he and his parents never imagined taking. “We’ve been following his lead the whole time, while trying to guide him as parents,” Lynn Brennan said.

One friend and teammate, Jeremy Foy, told the court, “all the students that I know of are cool with the fact that MAB is a boy.” Brennan’s case is moving ahead after a federal judge in Baltimore ruled in March that transgender students are protected by federal law from discrimination and found for the first time that Maryland’s constitution includes protections for transgender people.

Lesbian couple sues Trump administration for not allowing them to adopt refugee children

Two Texas women are suing the Trump administration after they were told they could not foster a refugee child because they don’t “mirror the Holy Family.”

Fatma Marouf and Bryn Esplin, professors at Texas A&M University who were married three years ago, said they were turned away by Catholic Charities Fort Worth after they expressed interest in applying to be foster parents to a refugee child. Catholic Charities, which has multiple regional offices, is the only organization in Texas that works with the federal government to resettle unaccompanied refugee children.

Catholic Charities’ program is overseen by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, one of two lead agencies that partners with the federal Office of Refugee Resettlement. With the help of the LGBT legal group Lambda Legal, the couple is suing both the Conference and U.S. Health and Human Services, claiming the decision to reject their interest in foster care violated the Constitution.

In a statement, the Texas Conference of Catholic Bishops and Catholic Diocese of Fort Worth did not comment on the couple’s specific allegations but said their refugee foster care rules comply with all federal regulations and laws.

“Finding foster parents — and other resources — for refugee children is difficult work,” Catholic Diocese of Fort Worth Bishop Michael Olson said. “It would be tragic if Catholic Charities were not able to provide this help, in accordance with the Gospel values and family, assistance that is so essential to these children who are vulnerable to being mistreated as meaningless in society.”

Marouf and Esplin moved to Texas in 2016 and reside in Fort Worth. In their lawsuit, the couple claims administrators at the Catholic Charities Fort Worth invited Marouf to learn about their foster care program for refugee kids.

But when Marouf and Esplin showed up for an interview, they said they were told they did not “qualify” to be foster parents. Donna Springer, chairwoman of the organization’s board of directors executive committee, allegedly told the couple that foster parents must “mirror the Holy Family,” according to the suit.

Marouf, who directs the A&M School of Law’s Immigrant Rights Clinic, said the agency put its religious views over the best interests of the kids in their care. This is so fucking true. Religious bigots promoting patriarchy is at the bottom of this.

“Refugee children have been through enough trauma to last a lifetime,” Marouf, 41, said. “They need love, stability, and support, which Bryn and I have in abundance.”

Esplin, 33, who designed the curricula for the A&M College of Medicine’s child and adolescent psychiatry bioethics fellows, added: “Being denied the opportunity to foster a child because we don’t ‘mirror the Holy Family’ — clearly code for being a same-sex couple — was hurtful and insulting to us.”

In the lawsuit, the couple states that Catholic Charities Fort Worth was aware the women were married prior to their interview. The women said they were told they did not qualify just before the group’s director of immigration services invited Marouf to give a presentation on her legal work at A&M.

Catholic Charities Fort Worth denies the couple ever spoke with Springer — saying she “never had any contact with the couple” — but acknowledged the then-director of child welfare services talked to them over the phone.

Last year, Texas passed a law giving legal cover to adoption and foster care agencies that cite religion to turn away prospective parents. Many faith-based adoption groups, including those that receive taxpayer money through state contracts, already turn away LGBT couples or prospective parents who are single, unmarried or not Christian.

The new Texas law, which went into effect Aug. 1, extended additional legal protections if these rejections are made based on the child placement agency’s “sincerely held religious beliefs.”

But this law doesn’t apply to Marouf and Esplin’s case, Lambda Legal said, because refugee child foster care is run through the federal, not state, government.

“We are challenging federal funding to an organization that permits religiously-based discrimination,” said Currey Cook, director of the Youth in Out-of-Home Care Project at Lambda Legal.

“But while our case does not challenge the state (law), it goes to the heart of the issue in that equally unconstitutional law and demonstrates clearly the danger of such laws — harm to children as result of fewer homes available to them and harm to the loving families turned away.”

Dolores Huerta, Presidential Medal of Freedom Achiever

Dolores Huerta “Racism, sexism, discrimination, and social and economic inequities continue dividing people of color from their white counterparts, women from men and the rich from the poor, she said. A better future can only be achieved, she said, through a grass-roots effort of organizing to demand change.”

Dolores Huerta

Dolores Huerta, a longtime civil rights leader and a champion for farmworkers, immigrants and women, visited Southwestern University on Jan. 18 as part of “Remember, Honor and Act — MLK 50,” a celebration of Martin Luther King Jr.’s life and legacy.

During her speech to a crowded room of students, teachers and community members, Huerta didn’t shy away from hot topics, which she said parallel the social and political climate of the 1960s.

Racism, sexism, discrimination, and social and economic inequities continue dividing people of color from their white counterparts, women from men and the rich from the poor, she said. A better future can only be achieved, she said, through a grass-roots effort of organizing to demand change.

“We’re in a very critical moment not only in our country but in our world,” Huerta said. “When things are so bad that people start paying attention, I say that’s a good time to organize.”

She suggested the growing divide between certain political, social and ethnic groups begins as early as prekindergarten.

“Look at the content in our schools,” Huerta said. “Somehow, it seems a whole lot of things have been left out of our educational system.” She said those omissions include the contributions from underrepresented groups in the United States, reaching as far back as the nation’s founding.

Dolores Huerta touched on a potential renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement, which has a major effect on trading among the United States, Mexico and Canada. She said the agreement has led to corporations taking over the production of goods from farmers in developing countries. She urged students to go beyond the ballot box and get involved through volunteering and serving on community boards.

“I do believe we’re going to have a new political revolution,” Huerta said, adding that recent wins for Democrats in Alabama and Virginia back her theory. Dolores Huerta created the Agricultural Workers Association and co-founded the united Farm Workers. Working alongside César Chávez, she was arrested 22 times for protesting, helped lead a highly publicized and successful grape boycott, and coined the phrase “Si, se puede” (“Yes, we can”).

Dolores Huerta has earned numerous honors, including the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

“Dolores Huerta has been an inspiration to our community for a very long time,” said Marissa Madrid-Ortega, president of the university’s Coalition for Diversity and Social Justice, which co-sponsored the event. The school recently obtained rights to stream “Dolores the Movie,” a documentary about her work and life.

“It’s amazing to see someone who looks like me — another Latina — who was able to continue that activism all throughout her life,” Madrid-Ortega said. Nadia Siles, an engineer at Samsung Austin Semiconductor, attended the event after watching the documentary. She said she sees her hardworking mother and activist sister in Huerta.
“I had never been an activist. I was a bystander watching,” Siles said as she was overcome with emotion. “She took me from just watching the news to actually wanting to be involved and go out and volunteer anddo more.”

Topless protester tries to steal Jesus from Nativity at Vatican

god is woman

Police in Rome on Christmas day detained a topless protester after she tried to remove the baby Jesus from the Vatican’s Nativity scene. The woman was wearing only pants and shoes. A photographer from Reuters news agency said the woman jumped over guard rails and rushed onto the nativity scene shouting, “God is woman!” She had the same message written on her back.

Alisa Vinogradova
Sextremist Femen activist

Video of the moment posted to Twitter shows the topless woman being tackled to the ground by a police officer in a black cape, right in the middle of the nativity scene with a statue of the mother of Jesus looking on. The protester managed to get her hands on the naked baby Jesus, but it was left dangling from the manger as the cop, quickly joined by several others, wrestled with her.

Activista de FEMEN intenta robar al niño Jesús

Activista de FEMEN intenta raptar al niño Jesús del nacimiento gigante del Vaticano mientras grita “Dios es Mujer”. http://bit.ly/2BzAc5w

Posted by Newsweek en Español on Monday, December 25, 2017

The Ukrainian “sextremist” Alisa Vinogradova was identi›ied by her fellow members of the international feminist activist organization, Femen, on group’s the website. The group is known for its topless activists who challenge patriarchies around the world.

Is American Conservatism Inherently Bigoted?

Conservative Bigotry


“Is American conservatism inherently bigoted?” asked Peter Beinart.

(Click on video at right.)

For many liberals, the answer is obviously “Yes.” President Trump’s attacks on Mexicans, Muslims, and other minorities, combined with his half-hearted repudiations of white supremacists, have made Repub­lican racism almost an article of faith in Democratic politics.

But efforts to shame conservatives have backfired horribly. “Outrage at political correctness-fueled by the conviction that charges of bigotry are used to shut down legitimate discussion-has become more central to American conservatism.”

After being constantly stigmatized as racists and homo­phobes, conservatives have adopted a siege mentality and are expressing more racial and cultural resentments.

“Liberals would be wise to recog­nize this vicious cycle” and stop wielding the epithets “racist,” “bigot,” and “anti-Semitic” so promiscuously. Republicans do bear responsibility for renouncing egregious racists in their midst, as well as policies, such as Voter ID laws, that clearly have racial consequences.

But to halt “the downward spiral” of cultural division, self-righteous liberals should re­mind themselves that values evolve over time, and that Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama publicly opposed gay marriage until five years ago.

Were they bigots until 2012? “Hatred and scorn” are easy. Empathy and persuasion are hard-but without them, our divisions will only deepen.

Federal judge tosses out Texas abortion law – again

District Judge Lee Yeakel

For the third time this year, a federal judge has tossed out an abortion-related regulation in Texas — this time a law that bans a common type of second-trimester abortion unless doctors first employ an added procedure to ensure fetal demise.

In a ruling issued Wednesday afternoon, U.S. District Judge Lee Yeakel of Austin said the law requires doctors to use risky, unproven and medically unnecessary methods to cause fetal demise before beginning a dilation and evacuation abortion, the safest and most common such procedure after the 15th week of pregnancy.

The added procedure, typically conducted by injecting toxins into the fetus via a 4-inch needle inserted through the abdomen or vagina, carries increased risks of infection and other health complications, Yeakel wrote.

“The court is unaware of any other medical context that requires a doctor — in contravention of the doctor’s medical judgment and the best interest of the patient — to conduct a medical procedure that delivers no benefit to the woman,” he wrote.

In his ruling, Yeakel acknowledged that the state has an interest in preserving the life of a fetus, as determined by the Supreme Court. But the state’s interest does not supersede a woman’s right to an abortion, he said.

“That a woman may make the decision to have an abortion before a fetus may survive outside her womb is solely and exclusively the woman’s decision. The power to make this decision is her right,” Yeakel wrote.

“The state’s position is that the right and the interest are entitled to equal weight. But this is incorrect,” the judge added. “The state’s legitimate interest in fetal life does not allow the imposition of an additional medical procedure … not driven by medical necessity. Here, the state’s interest must give way to the woman’s right.”

At the urging of abortion providers, Yeakel temporarily blocked the Texas law on Aug. 31, the day before it was to take effect. That 14-day temporary restraining order was extended until Wednesday to allow time for Yeakel to issue a written opinion after a five-day trial on the law’s constitutionality that took place earlier this month.

Abortion rights advocates praised Wednesday’s decision.

Danica Roem First Trans Elected State Legislator

This is so precious.A republican male was running against a transgender democrat. His thing was ensuring that trans women could not use the female restroom. He was defeated by a transgender woman.

danica roem

State Legislator Danica Roem

Associated Press 11/09/2017.

Richmond Virginia – A Virginia woman who is set to become the first openly transgender person to get elected and serve in a state legislature in the U.S.

Roem, a former newspaper reporter and longtime metal band singer, defeated Republican Del. Bob Marshall, winning 54 percent of the 22,000 votes cast in the Virginia House of Delegates district outside the nation’s capital.
She will be the only openly transgender state legislator in the U.S. and the first to both get elected and serve, according to the Victory Fund, a political action committee at works to get openly LGBTQ people elected.

Roem started her gender transition about five years ago when she was 28 and began taking hormone replacement therapy in late 20s. while she openly talks about it, saying it “fundamentally altered my life for the better” – she’s made it clear while campaigning that she would rather focus on jobs, schools and improving Route 28, one of the area’s most congested thoroughfares.

“I’m going to bring a reporter’s sensibilities here to Richmond so that we can actually accomplish the things I’m setting out to do without hyperbole, without discrimination.”

Working as a reporter taught her how to listen and understand people, she said on her campaign website.

No matter where you come from, how you worship, or who you love, you are welcomed and celebrated in Virginia because of who you are, not despite it.

Her opponent was a lightning rod for controversy, sponsoring a bill that would have restricted which bath rooms transgender people could use.

On the campaign trail Marshall and other Republicans repeatedly misidentified Roem’s gender.

Texas Legislature Seeks to dis-allow Foster Care Placement with LGBT Couples

Foster Care

The hugely overburdened child welfare systems seeks to worsen it by not allowing placement with LGBT couples.
Divided largely along party lines, the Texas House approved a bill Wednesday that would allow faith-based foster care and adoption agencies to refuse to place children with lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender households over religious objections.

Supporters, most of them Republicans, said HB 3859 would protect the free practice of religion while keeping essential Christian organizations in the child-welfare system, which is plagued by a shortage of homes for children who had been abused or neglected.

The 93-49 vote sent House Bill 3859 to the Senate, where similar legislation has been stalled in committee.
Led by Democrats, opponents said the bill would allow for state-sanctioned discrimination under the guise of religion, favoring conservative Christian beliefs — and potential objections to non-Christian, single or LGBT Texans — over the welfare of children.

“I never want y’all to have to go against your religion,” said Rep. Mary Gonzalez, D-Clint. “But when we use tax dollars, those tax dollars should never be used to discriminate against any Texan.”
The bill’s author, Rep. James Frank, R-Wichita Falls, said he was trying to ensure that faith-based groups can remain in business.

“This is really to give quick, clear certainty to providers so they can take care of children instead of fighting lawsuits,” he said. “We need everyone to the table to help with the foster care situation.”
Four Democrats voted for the bill — Reps. Nicole Collier of Fort Worth, Rene Oliveira of Brownsville, Terry Canales of Edinburg and Ryan Guillen of Rio Grande City.

Two Republicans voted against — Reps. Sarah Davis of West University Place and Jason Villalba of Dallas.
Wednesday’s vote followed more than three hours of sometimes emotional debate on the bill Tuesday night, during which Frank said most of the opposition was based on “fabricated hysteria” by opponents.
“This provides a reasonable accommodation to those who are helping solve our foster-care crisis,” Frank said. “This bill will make more foster-care homes available.”

But Rep. Celia Israel, D-Austin, said she believed the bill was more about political posturing than helping children. “The idea that kids in foster care should be political pawns is just crushing,” she said.
HB 3859, with 41 Republican authors and co-authors, would allow faith-based child-welfare agencies to refuse service based on a sincerely held religious belief. The bill should not affect the choice of families for foster children, Frank said, because those decisions are made by Child Protective Services and organizations that would not be granted the right of religious refusal.
Applying to be a foster care parent in Texas

Creator of the Rainbow Flag Dies at 65

Gilbert Baker, a self-described “gay Betsy Ross” who in 1978 hand-dyed and stitched together eight strips of vibrantly colored fabric into a rainbow flag, instantly creating an enduring international symbol of gay pride, was found dead on Friday at his home in New York City. He was 65.

Cleve Jones, a friend and gay rights activist who confirmed the death, said that Baker had a stroke several years ago but had not been sick recently.

The first flags had eight colors, each stripe carrying its own signicicance: pink for sex, red for life, orange for healing, yellow for sun, green for nature, turquoise for magic, blue for peace and purple for spirit.

As the gay rights movement spread from San Francisco and New York in the 1970s, Baker was often asked by friends aware of his creative talents to make banners for protests and marches.

Before a gay pride parade in 1978 in San Francisco, Harvey Milk, a city supervisor and gay rights leader who was assassinated that year, joined others in asking Baker to create an emblem to represent the movement.

Baker, with help from volunteers, pieced together the first rainbow flags, unveiling them in the parade on June 25, 1978.

“A flag translates into everything, from tacky souvenirs to the names of organizations and the way that flags function,” Baker said in an interview in 2008. “I knewinstantlywhenIsawthe reaction that it was going to be something. I didn’t know what or how or — but I knew.”

The flag itself has changed since 1978, going from eight colors to six. Pink fabric was too expensive, Baker said, so it was removed,and turquoise and blue were combined into one color, royal blue.

Baker was born on June 2, 1951, in Chanute, Kan. His mother was a teacher, and his father was a lawyer and a judge. Baker said he was outgoing growing up but had always thought of himself as an outcast because he was gay.

Baker spent a year in college before he was drafted into the Army. He served as a medic and was eventually stationed in San Francisco, where he remained after leaving the Army in 1972.

After the 1978 parade, Baker joined a flag company in San Francisco that supported his idea of mass-producing his creation, but he later left for a career in art and design.

Baker refused to apply for a trademark for his flag.

“It was his gift to the world,” Jones said. “He told me when the flag first went up that he knew at that moment that it was his life’s work.”

The rise of Wild Feminism and Pussy Riot

Nadya Tolokonnikova

The rise of Wild Feminism and Pussy Riot
Lisa Gene Cox

“It’s important not to say to yourself, ‘Oh, it’s O.K.,’”

Nadezhda Andreyevna Tolokonnikova (Russian: Наде́жда Андре́евна Толоко́нникова; born November 7, 1989),nicknamed “Nadya Tolokno” (Надя Толокно), is a Russian conceptual artist and political activist. She is a member of the anti-Putinist punk rock group Pussy Riot, and has a history of political activism with the controversial street art group Voina. On August 17, 2012, she was convicted of “hooliganism motivated by religious hatred” after a performance in Moscow Cathedral of Christ the Saviour and sentenced to two years’ imprisonment. On December 23, 2013, she was released early with another Pussy Riot member Maria Alyokhina under a newly passed amnesty bill dedicated to the 20th anniversary of the Russian constitution.

Tolokonnikova was recognized as a political prisoner by the Russian human rights group “Union of Solidarity with Political Prisoners”. Amnesty International named her a prisoner of conscience due to “the severity of the response of the Russian authorities”.

(Source Wikipedia)

If influential advisers to Mr. Trump continue to so loosely issue jail threats to journalists for doing their constitutionally protected work that’s a big change to the institution of the presidency in my book, as well as in the one the founders wrote.

Leading up to Ms. Tolokonnikova’s trial, Russian news reports carried suggestions that she and her bandmates were pawns of Hillary Clinton’s State Department or witches working with a global satanic conspiracy — perhaps linked to the one that was behind the Sept. 11 attacks, as lawyers for one of their offended accusers put it. This is what we now call “fake news.”

Pussy Riot became an international symbol of Mr. Putin’s crackdown on free speech; of how his regime uses falsehood and deflection to sow confusion and undermine critics.

Make America Great Again – Pussy Riot

Now that the political-media environment that we smugly thought to be “over there” seems to be arriving over here, Ms. Tolokonnikova has a message: “It’s important not to say to yourself, ‘Oh, it’s O.K.,’” she told me. “It’s important to remember that, for example, in Russia, for the first year of when Vladimir Putin came to power, everybody was thinking that it will be O.K.”

She pointed to Russian oligarchs who helped engineer Mr. Putin’s rise to power at the end of 1999 but didn’t appreciate the threat he posed to them until they found themselves under arrest, forced into exile or forced into giving up their businesses — especially if those businesses included independent media critical of Mr. Putin (see Berezovsky, Boris; Gusinsky, Vladimir).

Of course, the United States has checks, balances and traditions that presumably preclude anything like that from happening, she acknowledged as we sat comfortably in sunny Miami Beach while it played host to a celebration of free expression (Art Basel).

“It is a common phrase right now that ‘America has institutions,’” Ms. Tolokonnikova said. “It does. But a president has power to change institutions and a president moreover has power to change public perception of what is normal, which could lead to changing institutions.”

As if to make her point, later that day the informal Trump adviser Corey Lewandowski declared that The New York Times’s executive editor, Dean Baquet, “should be in jail.” In October, The Times published an article about leaked pages from Mr. Trump’s 1995 state tax returns.

If influential advisers to Mr. Trump continue to so loosely issue jail threats to journalists for doing their constitutionally protected work after Inauguration Day, well, that’s a big change to the institution of the presidency in my book, as well as in the one the founders wrote.

None of it is all that shocking to Ms. Tolokonnikova, who at 27 has seen this music video before.

She was planning a lecture that night urging artists to become more engaged and pick up where the politically conscious punk bands like the The Dead Kennedys left off — their messages largely lost in the music of corporate-label imitators who hardly said boo through the debates over two wars, the Great Recession and racially charged police shootings.

Transgender Dolls Now on Sale

jazz jenny
WASHINGTON — A New York dollmaker says it will be selling what it believes is the first transgender doll on the market.

The doll is based on Jazz Jennings, the teenage trans-gender subject of the TLC documentary series “I am Jazz.” It will make its debut at the New York Toy Fair next week and be available on the Tonner Doll Co.’s web site and in specialty stores in July.

A spokesman for the company said the 18-inch doll, made using a “genderless” plastic mold typical of most dolls, is being tested for children ages 8 and older and is expected to retail for $89.99.

In comparison, the popular mass-market “American Girl” 18-inch dolls, which come with a book, sell for $115 on AmericanGirl.com.

jazz jenny

Tonner Doll, which is based in Kingston, N.Y., said Friday that the “Jazz” doll is being launched as a test for the specialty-retail market and will be sold in 25 to 50 stores.

The doll was designed and sculpted by company founder Robert Tonner.

Jennings appeared at age 6 on a Barbara Walters “20/20” special in 2007. She has identified as a female since she could talk, her parents told ABC News.

LGBT Foster Kids are the Responsibility of OUR Community

LGBT Youths

LGBT youths should be the top priority of the embattled Texas Child Protective Services.

I see and recognize an extreme danger here to the youths in our community. I feel that everyone who is LGBT should make it a priority to help our youths in our community from the dangers of those who disagree with our life style and feel that they must fix it. If you know of a solid LGBT family that would consider taking one of our youths into your home and provide a safe and supportive environment, I feel that it is your obligation to thoroughly discuss the issue then contact Child Protective Services of the decision.

Texas officials have unveiled a plan to work side by side with churches and faith leaders to recruit foster families to address the backlog of children in need of safe and nurturing homes. Some fear that such a heavy reliance on churches and faith communities might have an adverse impact on LGBT youth, making them even more vulnerable to rejection and placement disruption. Considering the platform state lawmakers have given reparative and conversion therapy efforts in recent years, it would be very easy for foster families to force youth to take part in these dangerous practices.

I read about every week where an LGBT youth commits suicide after being forced to say that gay, lesbian, transgender, or bisexuality is a horrible sin that must be ridden from their life.

I recall an article last month where a 17 year old went to a Florida Christian based Teen Challenge for court ordered drug treatment. After arriving back home he announced that he was no longer gay, that they had not only cured his drug addiction but also cured his homosexuality. Everyone that knew him, including family, knew instantly that something was not right. They knew who he was born as and what he was living as. Three days later he committed suicide.

Involving churches in placing foster kids is probably good for non LGBT youths, but LGBT youths should be out of their reach since Christians and other religions firmly feel that the LGBT life style is a sin, what ever that is, and that they will go to hell if not changed. If placed in such an environment the motive of accepting the kid by the foster parent was probably motivated by their desire to pursue what they think is their gods demand to change such behaviors to those taught in the very prejudiced and biggitous book that they refer to as the Bible.

Perhaps the state should consider a recruitment effort that is equally as aggressive in targeting progressive families who have the capacity and willingness to provide safe, accepting and affirming homes to LGBT youth. Furthermore, all foster families should be provided with training that addresses the impact that rejection can have on LGBT youth. A seminal study assessing the importance of family acceptance found that youth with rejecting caregivers are nearly eight times more likely to attempt suicide, six times more likely to be depressed, and 3½ times more likely to engage in risky sex associated with HIV infection than those youth with accepting caretakers.

8 Point Doe Transgender Deer

8 point doe

Transgender 8 point doe takes on the world

A Massachusetts hunter bagged what he thought was a large buck deer. Doe deer usually weigh around 150 pounds. Bucks around 185. This one weighed 220 pounds hand had a great rack of horns.

Then someone noticed something unusual. “Looks like female stuff to me!”

You think that the bucks had a problem banging a doe 40 pounds larger than them and with larger horns? Better make her happy guys!

“Every year we get reports of does with antlers, but generally speaking, they still have velvet on them,” a game warden said. “On average, you’re looking at 1 in 1,000 does having antlers of some kind.”

“There are different theories that scientists think cause antlers to grow in does,” Ravana explained. “Most scientists believe that does have the latent capacity to grow antlers. It’s just that they don’t have the testosterone to initiate antler growth.”

And those that do develop antlers will often have small nubs, or antlers covered in velvet, which consists of living tissue that nourishes the antlers during their growth phase.

“One of the things that crossed my mind when I heard about the 8 point doe, being hardened antlers and being so large in size, is that this might actually be a pseudohermaphrodite,”

“I didn’t get a look at the 8 point doe, but there might have been vestigial testes in the animal. It could have been an actual hermaphroditic deer — an animal having both male and female parts — which would increase the level of testosterone in the animal and initiate the antler growth and the subsequent shedding of the velvet.”

Damn, even deer have a hard time being understood when they are transgender. That makes me feel a little better.

If there are transgender 8 point does, it is not a long stretch to see that this is a natural phenomenon. All of nature has the capacity to identify with the gender that they identify with. Shit, just born that way y’all

NBC News on 8 point doe

Travis County Jail Transgender Ready

Travis County Jail Transgender Ready

November 19, 2016 Lisa Gene Cox

travis county sheriff office

A transgender activist has declared Travis County Jail to be transgender friendly and ready.

On November 2 of this year, I had a significant misunderstanding with a security guard, whom I have known a while, with a background of misunderstandings at a bus stop in front of a shopping center owned by HEB at Oltorf and Congress in South Austin, Texas. This disagreement landed me in jail for criminal trespass.

What concerned me the worst about going to jail was that I was obviously transgender, and jails are not known for ‘guests’ who are polite and open minded. I felt that I would be in great danger, and locked up with a lot of male robbers, sexual predators, drug dealers, you name it. None of them outstanding citizens of Austin Texas. “A guy with a first name Lisa and wearing red nail polish and toe polish, and has boobs! I have an idea.”

When I arrived at the Travis County Correctional Complex, run by the Travis County Sheriff Department and also known as Travis County Jail, I was shaking and crying. During my initial search, they asked if I wanted to be housed with the males or females. I said “females of course.” Then they had a female correctional officer take me to a room, take my clothes and look for things that you were not born with. Then I was given jail clothing (you will not find whem in Cosmopolitan magazine.) Then they had me sign a document that I wanted to be housed with the females.

Next I was taken to a nurse for screening. She saw the predicament and screened me not only for medical issues but transgender issues as well being what surgeries have I had done and my HRT, or Hormone Replacement Therapy, both I which I have been going through for years. I looked female (pretty much, considering I am 57 years old), and had boobs. She did her best to assess me to be placed with the females. I have read that this is the norm in Harris County, but as far as I knew it had never been done in Travis County, but I could be wrong. She told me not to take it personal against my gender but they would put me in isolation for a while and scratch their heads concerning classifying me.

Next a counselor visited me and filled out a “Transgender Review Board” document. Apparently, each transgender claim is studied by a board which they have set up. I so approve of that. Then I was placed in a lonely little cell for two days to await the outcome. I can see the problem. If they housed me with the males, it could lead to the greatest problems. And if they housed me with the females, it could lead to the greatest complaining.

Then someone visited me who was obviously a higher up and could make the decision. This is what he offered me. House me with the male kitchen workers. They don’t put up with problems in that area, and the guys would be probably the least problem. There were two men cells, but they gave me my own cell, and instructed the guards in that area to “Take care of her. DO NOT LET ANYTHING HAPPEN TO HER.”

This worked out great. As a transgender woman and transgender activist, I applaud the handling of this difficult situation by the Travis County Sheriff Department Correctional officers and those who directed them. I left a week after being locked up feeling cared for, and no one was uncomfortable.

Travis County Jail Website

Lisa Gene Cox

Transgender Activist, Author

Fantasypi.com gene@fantasypi.com

India’s Huge Transgender Community, the official third gender

There are many items of clothing that announce to the world that their wearer is now a woman. For some people, it’s the bra, for others, it’s their first shoe with a heel. For many Indian women, that garment is the sari, an expansive length of cloth that takes skill and know-how to wear correctly. Girls learn to execute this multi-step process from their mothers, and “come out” for the first time in their own sari during Ritu Kala Samskara, a ceremony that marks a girl’s transition into womanhood.

But, this journey isn’t just for girls. For India’s third gender, the hijra, that process of transformation is a much more complicated and fraught one to make. The label of “hijra” pertains to a diverse range of people who consider themselves outside of the cis categorization of male or female, but largely describes those born male who transition to female through a combination of gender affirmation surgery, taking on India’s traditional feminine gender roles, and wearing women’s clothing.

Though hijras were officially recognized by the Supreme Court in India in April of this year, which mandated their representation within government institutions, the idea of a “third gender” is not new there. Its origins go back thousands of years, and they have held cultural, political, and spiritual importance throughout history. But, like many in the global trans* community, they face incredible prejudice, discrimination, and violence. Even with their new legal recognition, hijras are still marginalized in a country where impoverished women do not have the same rights as their male counterparts. Since reliable doctors for sexual affirmation surgery are expensive and hard to find, many poor hijras seek out less-safe options. So, making the decision to transform at the risk of their own safety, civil rights, and personal health requires an incredible sense of identity. To hijra people, saris are a badge of honor, a symbol of self, and an armor against the world; it is their right.

With our host Asha Leo, we traveled to Coimbatore, India, to meet with a brave group of hijras in our final episode of Style Out There. Watch as we explore their world and perspective, and how powerful a single piece of clothing can be.

Two Transgender Workers Illegally Fired

DETROIT — A federal agency on Thursday filed its first lawsuits to protect transgender people in the workplace, accusing a Michigan funeral home and a Florida eye clinic of illegally firing employees who were making a transition to female.

R.G. & G.R. Harris Funeral Homes of Garden City, Michigan, and Lakeland Eye Clinic of Lakeland, Florida, violated federal law by discriminating based on gender stereotypes, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission said. It’s the first time the agency has sued claiming discrimination against people who are transgender.

Amiee Stephens, an embalmer and funeral director, was fired in 2013 after six years, after telling her boss she was transitioning from male to female, the EEOC said.

Brandi Branson was fired in 2011 as director of hearing services at Lakeland Eye in Florida after saying she was undergoing a gender transition to female, the agency said.

“Branson began wearing feminine attire to work, including makeup and women’s tailored clothing,” according to a lawsuit filed in federal court in Tampa, Florida. “Branson observed that co-workers snickered, rolled their eyes and withdrew from social interactions with her.”

The lawsuit against the funeral home was filed in U.S. District Court in Detroit. Messages seeking comment from the funeral home and the clinic weren’t immediately returned.

Federal law “prohibits employers from firing employees because they do not behave according to the employer’s stereotypes of how men and women should act,” said EEOC attorney Laurie Young.

The Human Rights Campaign applauded the EEOC’s actions: “Transgender people continue to face some of the highest levels of discrimination in the workplace,” legal director Sarah Warbelow said.

Transgender Teen Wins Right to Pee in the Woman’s Bathroom


Published on Feb 8, 2014

“School officials violated state anti-discrimination law when they would not allow a transgender fifth-grader to use the girls’ bathroom, according to a ruling by the highest court in Maine that’s believed to be the first of its kind.

The family of student Nicole Maines and the Maine Human Rights Commission sued in 2009 after school officials required her to use a staff, not student, restroom.

“This is a momentous decision that marks a huge breakthrough for transgender young people,” said Jennifer Levi, director of the Boston-based Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders’ Transgender Rights Project after the Maine Supreme Judicial Court’s ruling on Thursday.

The court concluded that the Orono school district’s actions violated the Maine Human Rights Act, which bans discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity, overturning a lower court’s ruling that the district acted within its discretion.”