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U.S. Military Bans LGBTQ Pride Flag

When the Department of Defense released their new official flag policy list in order to remove the Confederate Battle Flag from displaying on military bases our LGBTQ Pride flag & sovereign Native Nations flags were eliminated. The new authorized list includes the U.S. flag, the flags of states & territories, the POW-MIA flag, those of allied countries, unit flags, senior leader flags & flags flown for protocol purposes. This policy does not explicitly ban the Confederate Battle Flag & by omission bans sovereign Native Nations & LGBTQ Pride Flags on installations. More than two dozen House Democrats are demanding the reinstatement of LGBTQ Pride & Sovereign Native Nations flags on military installations stating, “The implicit banning of these symbols of diversity & inclusion runs counter to our ideals as a nation & a military. The Department must have the strength & courage to be able to simultaneously stand against a symbol of hate & oppression in the Confederate Battle Flag while allowing the display of support for civil rights, equity & justice. The resolute ideal that “all men are created equal” is embodied by the victory of the United States Armed Forces in the American Civil War & the defeat of an armed insurrection that sought to maintain the slavery & oppression of African Americans. We ask that you immediately revise the new policy on flag display, explicitly ban the Confederate Battle Flag & ensure that service members can express support for diversity & inclusion through the display of sovereign Native Nations & LGBTQ Pride flags.”
For More Info: modernmilitary.org
LISTEN: Actor Phillip Keene Talks Project Wingman & More

San Francisco LGBTQ Virtual Expo Event

Now in its fifth year the OurTownSF LGBTQ Nonprofit Expo 2020 is going virtual on Saturday August 15th from 12:30P to 4:30P. This is the world's largest LGBTQ resource fair with over 150 groups serving the San Francisco community from all over the Bay Area with thousands of attendees expected to tune in. These groups are going through tough times so take this opportunity to meet up with dozens of groups & help support them as a new client, board member, volunteer or donor. Groups participating will be providing a free expo of arts, community fundraisers, health, athletic, legal, political, recovery service & spiritual groups. The program will included an intro by Mayor London Breed & Supervisor Rafael Mandelman plus entertainment by The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, the Lesbian/Gay Freedom Band & a member of the San Francisco Gay Men's Chorus. Attendees will be directed to links in order to reach participants discounts at various Castro businesses & door prizes with links to several forms of health consultations & insurance registration will also be available. It is free to attend & offers Bay Area groups serving the LGBTQ community the opportunity to attract new clients, volunteers, board members & donors. Natalie stated, “Paul & OurTownSF team, thank you for having Community Initiatives. We were so happy to meet so many people & organizations leaving this world a better place than they found it. Thank you for the hospitality & for the wonderful gathering!” OurTownSF is a program of REAF a 501(c)3 non-profit providing aid to HIV/AIDS, hunger & underserved youth programs.
For More Info: ourtownsf.org
LISTEN: Actor Phillip Keene Talks Project Wingman & More

GLAAD Media Awards To Air On Logo

GLAAD hosted a virtual ceremony to announce the award recipients of their 31st Annual Media Awards that will air on Logo on Monday August 3rd at 8P EST. The online event was hosted by comedians Fortune Feimster & Gina Yashere & featured special performances from Chloe x Halle, Shea Diamond & Ben Platt. Shea Diamond performed “I Am America” introduced by Demi Lovato who stated, “I specifically want to remind trans youth that you matter. I know things are crazy hard right now & you may not have your usual support system around you...but don’t let anyone, especially the Trump administration, fool you into thinking you are anything less than perfect & meant to be. Be proud of who you are, keep your voices loud & strong & know that we’re out here fighting for you.” The online ceremony featured appearances by Jennifer Garner, August Getty, Gigi Gorgeous Getty & Nats Getty, Dan Levy, Rachel Maddow, Ryan O’Connell, Dolly Parton, Peppermint, the cast & producers of Pose, Geena Rocero, Angelica Ross, Lilly Singh, Benito Skinner, Brian Michael Smith, Darryl Stephens, Lena Waithe, Olivia Wilde, Raquel Willis & more. Gabrielle Union & Dwyane Wade presented the award for Outstanding Drama Series to the cast of Pose stating, “We stand as allies with the LGBTQ+ community as proud parents of a transgender child. Our daughter Zaya is leading us in our journey & we’re doing all we can to give every one of our kids the ability to live their truth. I didn’t always understand how to do that – but I thank Zaya for teaching me & GLAAD for elevating the images & messages that accelerate acceptance in every family.”
For More Info: glaad.org
LISTEN: Actor Phillip Keene Talks Project Wingman & More
Hear Audio Chats w/ LGBTQ Leaders @OUTTAKE VOICES™

Defunding The Transgender Military Ban

The United States House of Representatives approved the Rule for consideration of the FY21 Defense Appropriations Act which defines which amendments the House will consider as they fund the Department of Defense operations in the next fiscal year. Among the amendments approved for debate in the Rule is amendment #66 offered by Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA) that would prevent DoD from using any funds to implement the transgender military ban. The amendment will be considered by the full House of Representatives later this week. Aaron Belkin, Director of the Palm Center stated, “The Department of Defense should not be spending taxpayer money on a politically motivated policy that keeps qualified people out of the military, particularly when the military continues to face enlistment shortfalls. The House’s immediate passage of Rep. Speier’s amendment would send the fiscally responsible message that we should be spending money on protecting Americans, not on baseless policies enacted to score political points.” Last week on the third anniversary of Trump’s transphobic tweets announcing that transgender troops would be banned from the military the Palm Center released a policy memo explaining that the ban can be easily reversed in under thirty days. The memo was authored by retired Rear Admiral Alan Steinman, the former Surgeon General equivalent of the U.S. Coast Guard & it provides a regulatory roadmap of the precise steps needed to immediately restore transgender military service. The Palm Center is an independent non-partisan research institute that conducts scholarly analysis of U.S. military personnel policy with an emphasis on LGBTQ populations.
For More Info: palmcenter.org
LISTEN: Actor Phillip Keene Talks Project Wingman & More

MacKenzie Scott Major LGBTQ Gifts

MacKenzie Scott the former wife of Amazon founder Jeff Bezos announced that she has given $1.67 billion to charities in accordance to a pledge she made last year to give away the majority of her wealth during her lifetime. This included 46 million dollars to our LGBTQ community. Scott stated, “What fills me with hope is the thought of what will come if each of us reflects on what we can offer. Opportunities that flowed from the mere chance of skin color, sexual orientation, gender, or zip code may have yielded resources that can be powerful levers for change. People troubled by recent events can make new connections between privileges they’ve enjoyed & benefits they’ve taken for granted. From there, many will choose to share some of what they have with people whose equal participation is essential to the construction of a better world.” Some of the LGBTQ orgs that received gifts were Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice, GLSEN, Groundswell Fund, Lambda Legal, Leadership Conference Education Fund, National Center for Lesbian Rights, Point Foundation, SAGE, Transgender Law Center & PFLAG National. Brian Bond, Executive Director of PFLAG National stated, “Between the pandemic & years of being hit hard by dangerous & damaging anti-LGBTQ+ policies at the local, state & federal level, families & our LGBTQ+ loved ones have depended on PFLAG, perhaps more than ever. PFLAG National is grateful to MacKenzie Scott for her generosity, which will help strengthen our infrastructure, grow our staff & build new programs that will bring new allies along to the fight for LGBTQ+ affirmation & equality.”
For A Complete $$ List…
LISTEN: Actor Phillip Keene Talks Project Wingman & More

Amazon Prime LGBTQ Comedy Series

If you need some comic relief during these challenging times check out “Smothered” the new comedy series on Amazon Prime that tells the story of Randy (Mitch Hara) & Ralph (Jason Stuart) who also wrote & produced the series about a gay couple navigating their way through couples therapy. “Smothered” is part of Amazon Prime’s strategy to amplify the comedy side of LGBTQ voices & stories for a global audience. Jason Stuart (The Birth of a Nation) & Mitch Hara (Mutant Olive) harness their unique comedic talents & baggage to express their joint creativity & (separate) couples experience. The dark comedy shines a glaring light on a longtime gay couple who can’t stand each other but can’t afford to get divorced. Jason Stuart stated, “We are thrilled for the opportunity to partner with Amazon as we share our latest project, extending ourselves outside of the gay community & making all kinds of people laugh together. Mitch Hara added, “Smothered” is also a celebration of diversity. One that includes Little People, Transsexuals, Asians, Blacks, Whites, Jews, Closet Cases & a fluid dog. You’re welcome!” Rom-com fans will have a demented field day with season one featuring seven, irreverent short episodes as the series unfolds through their uninhibited & often shocking therapy sessions, viewers discover how the couple of 20 years outrageously nit-pick & push each other’s buttons. “Smothered” is directed by Terri Hanauer with guest appearances by Dalila Ali Rajah (Criminal Minds), Erik Aude' (American Sniper), Clent Bowers (Little Fockers), Erika Ervin (American Horror Story), Helen Hong (Silicon Valley), Scott Krinsky (Chuck), Pancho Moler (Ray Donovan) 7 Carole Ita White (Laverne & Shirley).
For More Info…
LISTEN: Actor Phillip Keene Talks Project Wingman & More

Israel Bans LGBTQ Conversion Therapy

The Knesset, the national legislature of Israel has approved a bill banning psychologists from practicing conversion therapy in Israel by a vote of 42 to 36. The legislation will take away the license of psychologists who uses conversion therapy, fine them & send them to jail for repeat offenses. Alternate Prime Minister & Blue & White leader Benny Gantz stated, “Conversion therapy was born in sin & its place is outside of the law & the public norm. We will make sure that everyone, from every background & sexual orientation, in Israel will have free choice & security in their identity." Meretz leader Nitzan Horowitz added, “Amazing news for the Israeli public & the LGBTQ+ community at whole. Today a historic change is beginning in Israel. I thank the MKs who voted in support of the freedom & equality in order to stop the horror of 'conversion therapy' & for everyone who acted, initiated, wrote, shared & fought for the life of the LGBTQ+ community. You helped save lives today.” The coalition of religious Jewish LGBTQ+ organizations, including Shoval, Havruta & Bat Kol welcomed the approval of the bill, saying "this is an exciting & significant day in which the injustice of years has been corrected & justice has been done to the victims. The Knesset chose to hear their cry & to protect additional youth from bodily & mental harm." Last month I talked with Shannon Minter, Legal Director of the National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR) about his work with “Born Perfect” to end conversion therapy in the USA in this exclusive audio interview. LISTEN
For Info: bornperfect.org
LISTEN: Actor Phillip Keene Talks Project Wingman & More

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U.S. Military Bans LGBTQ Pride Flag

When the Department of Defense released their new official flag policy list in order to remove the Confederate Battle Flag from displaying...

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