18-year-old Louise Deser Sinkel has been crowned Pasadena’s Rose Parade Queen, and in the process making history as the first individual from the LGBTQ person to do so.
Siskel becomes the 101stQueen of the Tournament of Roses in December and will lead the parade of New Year’s Day. More than 1,000 young women competed for the crown.
The Tournament of the Roses started 130 years ago as a small marketing event by Pasadena’s Valley Hunt Club. The aim was to promote the city’s charm and beautiful weather. It has grown in stature and is now one of America’s main New Year Celebrations.
As the first LGTBI winner, Siskel says she is also the first Jewish person and the first to wear glasses.
The new Queen said her message to everyone is to stand up and fight for what they believe in. ’I encourage everyone to stay engaged and active within your community, advocate and fight for the things you believe in, regardless of whether other people respond or care about those things in the way you do,’ she told the local paper.
‘I think it can be easy to get discouraged when people don’t share the same passion for your values or for the things that you care about, but I hope that people continue to fight for the things that are important to them, regardless of the support they see from others.’
The year 2018 will no doubt go down in LGBT+ history with several landmark moments changing LGBT lives.
India’s Supreme Court repealed a British colonial era-rule criminalizing gay sex
The historic decision on September 6 not only freed the country’s 1.3 billion peopleof the threat of life in prison for consummating consensual homosexual relationships, but it also revitalized the fight for LGBT+ rights in nearby countries, such as Singapore, and further afield, like in Kenya.
The landmark decision will not overcome the stigma surrounding homosexualityovernight, and LGBT+ people continue to faces various forms of restrictions and persecutions across the world.
Yet LGBT+ rights have advanced in small and big steps in the past 365 days—and as American voters elected the largest-yet contingent of LGBT+ lawmakers in the midterm elections this year, there are reasons to hope for more steps to come in 2019.
Here are the landmark moments of 2018 worth celebrating and remembering.
LGBT+ history in communities: new and first points of pride
Pride parades have colored new parts of the world in 2018, starting in Myanmar in January, when the country saw thousands of people attending its first-ever public LGBT+ festival.
Over the course of the year, the rainbow community claimed rights and visibility from the glaciers in Antarctica to the Caribbean shores of Barbados and Guyana.
In New Zealand, pride festivities this year were particularly eventful. Auckland Pride march saw for the first time the participation of the country’s prime minister, Jacinda Ardern, and was also the first pride parade in the country to feature the same-sex wedding of a lesbian couple.
More community-specific parades have also emerged. Trans rights supporters marched for the first time in the streets of Belfast in Northern Ireland in June and Dublin in the Republic of Ireland in July.
Those who identify as bisexual and their allies instead held a pride march in Los Angeles in September in what is believed to be the first-ever city-wide Bi Pride in the US.
LGBT+ history for trans representation: Awarded at lastWhile the UK was engulfed in a debate around self-identification of transgender people for most of the year as part of a public government consultation on reforms to the Gender Recognition Act, similar reforms were approved in Uruguay and in Chile.
The year opened and closed with landmark moments for the transgender community working in the entertainment industry. In January, Yance Ford became the first transgender director to earn an Academy Award nomination for Best Documentary Feature.
Ford did not ultimately win the honour, but the Oscars still represented a landmark moment for transgender representation when Chilean actress Daniela Vega became the first transgender person to present an award at the ceremony and the movie she starred in, A Fantastic Woman, also won the prize for Best Foreign Film.
In December, the Miss Universe beauty pageant featured a transgender woman as one of the contestants for the first time—beauty queen Angela Ponce, who already made history in her native Spain by winning the national title in July.
In Pakistan, a country where the transgender community faces prejudice and violence, there were particular milestones to celebrate with regards to their presence in the workforce. A TV channel appointed a transgender newsreader for the first time, while the government hired its first-ever openly transgender employee.
LGBT+ history in Parenthood: A global fight for rightsThe legal and societal recognition of LGBT+ families is yet another goal on the path to full equality. In Croatia, a book celebrating and normalizing parents of the same gender proved a success, selling out its first 500 copies upon launch.
In various countries where a legal vacuum on IVF and surrogacy for LGBT+ people persists, it has become the role of the courts or local authorities to make landmark rulings in the best interests of the child.
This was the case in Italy, where a lesbian couple convinced local authorities to recognise their child, born out of IVF, as officially having two mothers.
In Israel, where the exclusion of gay parents from a reform of surrogacy law sparked a nationwide strike this summer and inspired an activist to launch the country’s first LGBT+ party, a court agreed with a gay couple that allowing only one of the adoptive parents’ names on the child’s birth certificate was a discriminatory practice.
LGBT+ history in the Royal family: Not that kind of wedding
This year the British royal family significantly grew in size.
A third royal baby was born, Prince Harry got hitched and Lord Ivar Mountbatten, a cousin to the Queen and the great-nephew of Earl Mountbatten of Burma, who came out as gay in 2016, wedded his long-term partner James Coyle.
While no member of the royal family attended the wedding, his ex-wife Penelope Thompson walked by his side to give him away at the altar.
Queen Elizabeth II appeared to celebrate Pride month by flaunting a rainbow flower decoration on her hat to Royal Ascot—earlier that month, she had also made her first appearance with the first-ever openly gay footman to serve the monarch.
Ollie Roberts, a 21-year-old who has previously served in the Royal Air Force, was appointed to the role of personal footman to the monarch in June. He reportedly quit his job after being demoted from his position because of “courting publicity” a few months later.
LGBT+ history in sports: No kicking around
Sports remains a largely hostile environment for LGBT+ people to thrive in their authentic selfs. Two leading footballers playing in the British Premier League, Arsenal’s Héctor Bellerín and Chelsea’s Olivier Giroud have both said as much about football in recent interviews this year.
This is why is all the more remarkable that football player Collin Martin, who plays for Minnesota United in the MLS, decided to come out as gay this year posting a picture of himself wrapped in a rainbow flag. Martin is now the only out gay football player in a top professional soccer league.
In other sports, LGBT+ athletes have been able to show their excellency. On the sparkling surface of the ice rink, American figure skater’s Adam Rippon shined brightest, becoming the first openly gay man to qualify for the Olympics.
Rippon’s fellow Team USA athlete Gus Kenworthy, who came out in 2015 and competed in the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics as an out gay man, made television history when he kissed his boyfriend live on NBC’s international broadcast.
Even in the fighting sports, LGBT+ athletes have pulled all the right punches. Pat Manuel became the first transgender man to fight and win at a professional level in US boxing and WWE’s first openly lesbian wrestler Sonya Deville—real name Daria Berenato—competed in the first-ever WrestleMania women’s battle royal at the event.
In more strides for LGBT+ history in sports, assistant philosophy professor Rachel McKinnon won gold in the sprint at the 2018 UCI Masters Track Cycling World Championships, becoming the first transgender woman to win a world championship in cycling.
Traditional gender roles have been subverted in cheerleading, too, with male cheerleaders performing in the National Football League (NFL) for the first time this year.
The NFL also recorded a landmark moment when it joined the Major League Basketball to march at the New York Pride for the first time.
In yet another first, 59-year-old retired Dallas Cowboys player Jeff Rohrer became the first gay NFL player to marry a man when he tied the knot with his fiancé Joshua Ross in November.
Here’s to more progress in 2019.
Written By: Sofia Lotto Persio. 25 December 2018. Pinknews.com
Spain’s entry to the Miss Universe pageant, Angela Ponce, is breaking down barriers as the first-ever transgender woman to compete in the pageant that was formerly owned by Donald Trump. Ponce, a model who beat out 22 other women to become Spain’s entry to the pageant, which takes place on Sunday in Bangkok, said she hopes to use the platform to elevate trans visibility.
“If my going through all this contributes to the world moving a little step forward, then that’s a personal crown that will always accompany me,” Ponce told the Associated Press after she won the title of Miss Spain in June.
Ponce competed in the Miss World pageant in 2015 and found that the rules made it such that a trans woman could not win, which crushed her, she told Time in late November. But since Ponce made it to the Miss Universe finals, Miss World has now changed its rules, she said.
"I changed the rules," Ponce of the impact she's already had.
But the Miss Universe pageant under former owner Trump did not halt its ban on transgender contestants in 2012 without pressure. The ban was speciously lifted at the same time that famed attorney Gloria Allred threatened legal action against it for banning Jenna Talackova, a trans contestant from Canada.
Considering Trump’s past relationship with the pageant and his ongoing attacks on trans people including a proposed military ban and his administration's attempt to define trans people out of existence, Ponce commented on what it would mean for her to win in terms of Trump.
It would send “More than a message to him [Trump]. It would be a win for human rights,” She told Time. “Trans women have been persecuted and erased for so long. If they give me the crown, it would show trans women are just as much women as cis women.”
Despite competing on the world stage for some audiences that may not be tolerant of her trans identity, Ponce said she’s excited to compete.
“I’m not trying to impose anything on anyone. I’d never try to change anyone’s culture or way of life,” Ponce said. “But by competing I’ll make trans people more visible for everyone, which is a big step. I’m not nervous. I’m excited.”
Written by: Tracy Gilchrist. 16 December, 2018. Advocate
The film Philadelphia marked a turning point in Hollywood history–the moment when mainstream movies could finally tackle the proverbial elephant in the room: AIDS. Said beast had long cast a shadow over Tinseltown when the movie finally hit cinemas in 1993. Celebrities like Rock Hudson had already died of the disease, and the Reagan & Bush White Houses had done their best to ignore the epidemic. It was the crime of the century, writing HIV/AIDS off as a “behavior-based” condition, which allowed it to become an international pandemic which actually hit many more straight people than gay men.
With Philadelphia, Hollywood joined the cry of the LGBTQ community for empathy, with major stars like Denzel Washington and Tom Hanks (who won his first Oscar) appearing in the movie, which became a major hit with audiences and changed the way many people thought about the disease.
Now Coca-Cola has partnered with the noted anti-AIDS charity (Red) to produce a new video recalling that pre-Philadelphia world, the impact of the film, and how American progress since Reagan (yes, even President George W. Bush became a champion in the fight) has helped stem the spread of HIV, especially in sub-Saharan Africa.
Featuring interviews with Hanks, Washington and co-star Mary Steenburgen, the emotional short film reminds viewers of one powerful truth: even in the most desperate of times, we can still find hope.
Written by: David Reddish
The month of October is LGBT History Month — but why is it that, who said it is, and how did it come about?
What we now call LGBT History Month began in 1994 as Lesbian and Gay History Month, though it quickly added bisexual to the name, then later switched to the LGBT acronym.
The event was the brainchild of Rodney Wilson, a high school teacher and the founder of the first chapter of GLSEN — the LGBTQ organization dedicated to students and educators — outside of the group’s home state of Massachusetts.
In the early 1990s, Wilson was teaching history and government at Mehlville High School in suburban St. Louis.
It was while teaching at Mehlville, while lecturing on the Holocaust that Wilson came out to his students, explaining that had he been in Germany during World War II, he would likely have been imprisoned and killed under the Third Reich.
This humble beginning led University of Missouri-St. Louis — with Wilson as the founder on the first coordinating committee — to host the initial Gay History Month Event. Wilson chose October as National Coming Out Day was already established at the 11th of October.
It also commemorated the anniversary of the National March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights, the first of its kind, held on the 14th of October, 1979.
The Paris city council plans to open an archive center in 2020 that will preserve documentation of the LGBT movement in France from the 1960s onwards.
The idea was conceived by the former Socialist mayor Bertrand Delanoë 20 years ago but, due to disagreements with LGBT associations, a center failed to materialize. The recent success of Robin Campillo's 120 Beats per Minute—about the Act Up group who were prominent figures in Aids activism in the 1990s—has given fresh impetus to the creation of the center.
“The film's critical and public success has enabled us to accelerate the process, which has dragged on for 15 years,” says Bruno Julliard, the deputy mayor of Paris in charge of culture. The film won the Grand Prix of the jury at Cannes Film Festival this year.
While the plans are at the consultation stage, the archive is likely to be in the town hall of the third or fourth arrondissement in the Marais district, which is the centre of France’s LGBT culture. The aim is to make the historical archives accessible to researchers. “The City of Paris has a concrete commitment towards appropriating the heritage of this activist battle and preserving its archives, and if there's a city that is legitimate in archiving this activist battle, it's Paris,” Julliard says. “Paris has a historic relationship with human rights and LGBT rights.”
The center will include a collection of magazines and posters, a community space, meeting rooms and potentially an exhibition space. “It's important that the documentation will be as large and diverse as possible, and I hope there will be funds for photographs and artworks to enable the collection to be enriched,” Julliard says.
Julliard adds that there is potential for partnerships with foundations and museums, highlighting the work of artists such as Keith Haring, Pierre et Gilles and photographers who have worked on LGBT issues. “Everything needs to be reflected upon but I'd like art to contribute to the archives and put the LGBT fight in France and around the world into perspective,” he says.
The archive centre is being financed by the French state, the City of Paris and private partners.
#Gay Rights # LGBTHistory
California becomes the first state in the nation to recognize LGBTQ military veterans.
On Monday Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law a bill designating the LGBTQ Veterans Memorial at the Desert Memorial Park in Cathedral City, and making it the state’s official LGBTQ Veterans Memorial. The memorial park will assume the maintenance of the monument.
In 2001 the memorial was established by Frank Moulton AMVETS Post 66 which is based in Palm Springs but was not recognized by the state until now. It is an obelisk of mahogany granite from South Dakota with the logo of the Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual Veterans of America. According to a press release it was the nation’s first memorial to be dedicated to LGBTQ veterans.
“Our memorial has become a holy place for people who want closure; people who were excluded from the military funerals of their loved ones, excluded from saying goodbye and having an opportunity to gain closure,” Tom Swann Hernandez, founder and current commander of Post 66.
Hernandez testified before the state legislature to argue for the memorial to be officially recognized by the state. Legislation such as this was introduced and passed before, but Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) voted the bill in 2004.
It was said that, “People said, ‘Well, if you have a gay veteran’s memorial, then we’ll have one for left-handed veterans one day, for right-handed veterans,’” at an event in July Hernandez said “that there are people who try to diminish the importance of the memorial, but we will not give up.” Assembly Bill 2439 passed with bipartisan support, whereas before it was opposed by Republicans.
Assemblymember Eduardo Garcia the chief sponsor of AB 2439 stressed the importance of honoring LGBTQ veterans because of the struggles many had to endure to serve in the military. Hernandez successfully fought the Navy when they attempted to discharge him after he came out in 1992. Today Donald Trump’s administration is trying to prevent transgender people from serving. . “It doesn’t seem to be getting any easier for our LGBTQ community to continue to fight for the inclusiveness that you — the men and women in uniform — have fought to ensure,” Garcia said
A special dedication ceremony will be held in November hosted by Post 66 and they have invited Gov. Brown.
The former proprietor of a Hollywood filing station brothel during the Golden Age of Hollywood has released the Secret History of Hollywood, a documentary about his career and life, on July 27. Scotty was known as a self-described procurer of prostitutes and hookers to the elite in Hollywood during the 1940s. The documentary about his life, he talks about everyone from Cary Grant to Katherine Hepburn to Marlon Brando, even Charles Laughton, revealing who did what with who and what they were into.
The city of West Hollywood awarded Scotty the key to the city at a formal ceremony for his work in creating a safe space and his defense of the LGBT community long before the Stonewall Riots. Believe it or not, at the age of 95 he is still working as a hooker and private bartender. Hey, if you really love your job why quit?
Scotty has also opened his personal archives, showing the public dozens of hereto-unseen images of himself, friends and associates.
Here are a few images released, a small glimpse into homo-eroticism from the past.
Halloween is considered one of the best holidays in New Orleans. For the LGBT Community, it’s about sharing its love of showmanship, and culture.
Halloween New Orleans for 35 years has been one of the most successful events in New Orleans. The sole mission of HNO is to raise money for Project Lazarus an organization that provides health care, support services, and housing for those living with HIV/AIDS (both men and women). HNO has raised approximately $4.5 million for Project Lazarus, 100% of all donations go directly to Project Lazarus, and is one of the few donation/volunteer events left in the United States.
HNO weekend is something to experience, after attending last year’s event at the House of Blues I was amazed at the transition. There are few events that impress me, however, I can’t stress how this one truly did. You come to realize that behind the scenes there is a lot of work put into this event. Each year they select a different theme, and according to Dustin Woehrmann, President of the HNO Board “the planning and execution of the Halloween event is planned right down to the smallest detail.” Furthermore “It’s about having fun, but also raising money for Project Lazarus, which is getting harder to do each year. We must reach a younger crowd and that can be difficult.”
But make no mistake HNO works hard to raise what money they can, last year they raised approximately $30,000 for Project Lazarus. For the board, it’s not just about raising money, but a desire to foster a supportive community here in New Orleans. HNO will also host mini-events during the year to keep the group engaged.
Most people know that I’m not a fan of large LGBT parties. It’s been my experience that most turn into another boring circuit party, with stuck up half-dressed men, loud music, overpriced drinks and me wondering what the hell I'm doing here. However, for some reason, the HNO Halloween Party was different for me, maybe because I was there to take pictures, but I was impressed with the creative costumes and the effects were impressive (did I say that already?) either way I look forward to next year’s events.
For more information visit: Halloween New Orleans
TO SEE ADDITIONAL IMAGES VISIT THE ARCHIVED PICTORIAL BLOG
Lost home videos were discovered by Geoff Story, a filmmaker from St. Louis. Telling Nancy Fowler from St. Louis Public Radio he explained that he stumbled upon them 20 years ago at an estate sale of the Buddy Walton.
Walton often referred to as St. Louis' "hairdresser to the stars", including Eleanor Roosevelt and Ethel Merman if they happened to pass through St. Louis, but was also known for having lavish pool parities at his home.
“These men are still in their 20s in the sun, swimming, like they always will,” Story says. “There’s a real sweet pain, and when you watch it, there’s a happiness but you can’t believe it’s so long ago and you can’t touch it–it’s gone.”
Finding the footage inspired the idea for a documentary, which lead Story to set out and find gay men who were alive in the 1940's and talking to them about their experiences and lives. Story's new film Gay Home Movie, which he is currently working on, give us a rare look into an invisible world when LGBT individuals were forced to love and live in the dark. His documentary has already sparked the interest of gay Hollywood exec Brain Graden. “It speaks to a wide array of people on a very deep level,” Graden tells Fowler. “What are the chances someone would go to an estate sale and pick up these canisters of old footage? It’s almost like these men are trying to talk to us from beyond the grave.”
h/t: St. Louis Public Radio