The Royal Canadian Mint has unveiled its new $1 ‘equality coin’, honoring the progress of civil rights for ‘LGBTQ2’ Canadians.
Canada’s Minister of Finance Bill Morneau unveiled the coin today via a Facebook Live stream.
The unveiling ceremony took place at The 519 Center – an LGBTI center in the heart of Toronto’s gay village.
It has been created to mark 50 years since the beginning of the process of decriminalization of homosexuality in Canada.
The new coin combines the words ‘EQUALITY-ÉGALITÉ’ and features the work of Vancouver artist Joe Average.
It enters into circulation today. Only 3 million of the coins will be produced.
‘The equality coin recognizes their triumphs’
Commenting, Bill Morneau said: ‘For the past 50 years and beyond, Canadians have fought for their right to love, marry, start a family and live openly as their most authentic selves.’
He continued: ‘The equality coin recognizes their triumphs and encourages all of us to build a better, more inclusive Canada – because like the coin itself, the more equality we have in Canada, the richer we all are.’
‘Today is an important day for the LGBTQ2 community, and for all Canadians, as this commemorative coin enters circulation,’ said Randy Boissonnault, Special Advisor to the Prime Minister on LGBTQ2 Issues. ‘It is an opportunity to reflect on a landmark event in our country’s history, and a reminder of the progress still to be made as we work toward inclusion and equality for all LGBTQ2 Canadians.’
Written by: Jamie Tabberer. 23 April 2019. Gaystarnews.com
After being outed as gay by my brother, my devout Muslim father in Indonesia gave me a choice — follow his rules and stop living as an out man or choose my own path and be disinherited.
When I told my father that I wanted to be free to be myself, he immediately became angry and furious. He told me to get out. I just cried and fell silent, speechless. I couldn’t move from my seat and did not know what to do.
Until being outed in 2015 when my brother stumbled across a gay porn video I had stupidly loaded on my computer, I was feeling happy as a gay man and distance runner. In addition to the video, my brother also discovered text messages that showed I was dating a man and he told my parents.
Indonesia is the world’s largest Muslim country and hostile to LGBT people. Nonetheless, when I came out to my best friend, Vivi, in 2013 in high school she was accepting. I later brought my first boyfriend to meet her and told her the whole story about my sexual orientation.
After I came out to Vivi, I got the strength to tell others and my circle of friends became a great support system. But that still left me terrified of telling my family.
While my father is a Muslim, my mother is Christian, but both are very devout. My brother who outed me was of no support and when I got my father’s ultimatum, I had no one in my family to turn to.
I grew up in a family who expected me to be the one who would bring success to our name. I have two brothers, but only I graduated with a college diploma while my brothers made it through high school.
My mother tried to persuade me to change and leave anything connected to being LGBT. My parents associated being gay with rampant sex and drugs, even though that was not my experience.
In the end, my parents said they would give me a second chance if I swore a Muslim oath about honoring God. I felt that I would not be able to fulfill this vow, because I would never be able to change, as they wished me to be straight.
I was told that if I violate the oath, they would not consider me their child anymore.
Since that day, things have been low-key between us, but my mother regularly gives me advice about being closer to God.
But I know there will be a time for me to let them know that I am still part of the LGBT environment. That’s when I have to make a decision and choose for my own life, because I have the right to determine my life, not them. I really love them and I just hope they accept me for who I am.
I am still looking for my life partner and hope to settle down and start a family, living with someone I love like couples I see in other parts of the world. For now, I am grateful that there are so many friends that I consider to be a family who always support me.
Denny Faj, 27, lives in Jakarta, Indonesia, and is a member of Adidas Runners Jakarta. He can be reached via Instagram (@dennyfaj) or email (email@example.com)
Story editor: Jim Buzinski. 03 April 2019. Danny jaj. Outsports.com
Imagine Dragons front man Dan Reynolds has pleaded with religious leaders to denounce ‘gay cure’ therapy.
The pop star, both straight and Mormon, is vocal in his support to the LGBTI community.
He established the Love Loud music festival which benefits LGBTI suicide charities.
Dan Reynolds urges religious leaders to denounce ‘gay cure’ therapy Reynolds said: ‘I plead with our religious leaders across the world to stand up for equality together.
‘True equality – not empty words of love – but statements and actions thats show our LGBTQ youth that they are “sinless” and perfect just as they are.'
‘Until these changes are made within the doctrines of orthodox faith, we will continue to see increased rates of suicidality and depression/anxiety amongst our LGBTQ youth.’
He continued: ‘It is a false notion that LGBTQ youth are more likely to have emotional vulnerabilities because of who they are/how their brains are programmed.'
‘The truth is that the leaders of our communities have created societal rules that leave no room for our LGBTQ youth to be healthy.
‘It is a flawed system, not a flawed individual.'
‘Until the leaders of all orthodox faiths denounce conversion therapy and accept our LGBTQ youth into full fellowship I believe we will continue to see a great exodus from all orthodox faith.'
‘We are not a generation that will stand for intolerance, homophobia or racism.’
Reynolds concluded: ‘And to those that say the simple answer is for our youth to just leave religion – it isn’t that simple.'
‘Many of these LGBTQ youth will be kicked out of the home and put into a more dangerous situation if they denounce the faith of their family.'
‘Also many find peace in their faith. They love it.'
‘It brings them comfort in a sad and oftentimes scary world.'
‘It is now up to our leaders to LEAD. How many more children will be lost before we practice true love in our churches?’
Written by: Joe Morgan. 21 March 2019. gaystarnews.com
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
This year San Diego Pride will give out money to their favorite gay charities. They have announced that they will be donating $170,000 to LGBTQ organizations.
Since 1994 San Diego Pride has donated their surplus profits and has given more than $2.7 million since then.
“San Diego Pride, its events and year-round programming are made possible by our over 30 LGBTQ-serving nonprofit community partners, 87 sponsors, 5,600 volunteer shifts, 22,000 volunteers hours, 45,000 Festival attendees, and 250,000 Parade attendees,” San Diego Pride Executive Director Fernando Lopez said. “It is this collective effort that builds on the legacy of those who came before us that makes this level of philanthropy possible.”
“Our giving will have a tangible impact on projects locally, nationally, and globally that support and sustain LGBTQ communities in a myriad of ways,” San Diego Pride’s Director of Philanthropy Sarafina Scapicchio said. “This year’s grants will help create new LGBTQ youth programs, feed and house people living with HIV, fund multiple LGBTQ-focused performing arts projects, provide legal support for LGBTQ victims of sex trafficking, scholarships for transgender students, emergency housing for homeless LGBTQ people and so much more.”
As of right now, San Diego Pride has not released the names or any specifics of who will receive the money, only that they will donate to about 59 different LGBTQ-serving organizations.
They want donate to transgender community support programs, health and human service programs, sobriety services, youth programs and LGBTQ art and culture programs.
Grey’s Anatomy’s actor Jake Borelli has publicly come out as gay after being inspired by a same-sex storyline on the show.
Borelli posted about his experience of growing up as a gay kid in Ohio on Instagram, after his character Schmitt shared a kiss with male surgeon Nico Kim (Alex Landi) in a recent episode titled “Flowers Grow Out of My Grave”—making it the medical drama’s first male same-sex storyline.
“As a gay guy myself, tonight’s episode was so special to me,” Borelli posted on Thursday.
“This is exactly the kind of story I craved as a young gay kid growing up in Ohio, and it blows my mind that I’m able to bring life to Dr. Levi Schmitt as he begins to grapple with his own sexuality this season on Grey’s Anatomy.
“His vulnerability and courage inspire me every day, and I hope he can do the same for you.”
Borelli also uploaded a photo of himself wearing a Pride-themed bandana.
Popular Univision morning show Despierta America had an interesting morning broadcast. Luis Sandoval the showâs host decided to open up about his own sexuality.
The 38-year-old has been on the show since 2005. Sandoval who became emotional opened up about his sexuality with views. âI do not live in the closet,â he uttered through tears. âMy family knows it. I have a partner that I am happy with and if I cry it is because this moment is very emotional for me.â
Sandoval who currently lives in Los Angeles grew up in Nayarit, Mexico, at 25 he landed his job at Despierta America.
He was prompted to go public after the suicide of 9-year-old Jamel Myles. Myles killed himself after coming out to his family and school and enduring bullying. âImagine a motherâs pain,â Sandoval said while coming out. âLosing your nine-year-old son and then I started to see people criticizing the lady, âthis is your fault, you exposed your son to these things, you deserve it.ââ
Sandoval who was out to his family and that his mother has always supported him, she even was present during the broadcast.
Amid an outpouring of support from the LGBT community, he opened up about his partner on Instagram:
âWhatâs next after leaving the closet? ? He is Renato [Perez], my life partner and is a psychotherapist,â Sandoval said in his post.
We have to congratulate Luis for having the courage and conviction to go public and to think this all happened on National Coming Out Day.
Watch the video (Itâs in Spanish)
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.
On Saturday, September 22 West Hollywood will be hosting the first Bi Pride celebration in the United States. Let fly those pink, purple and blue flags.
The Human Rights Campaign and the city of West Hollywood will be organizing the event along with the Los Angeles chapter of amBi, according to the Los Angeles Blade.
“While a small number of cities have issued proclamations recognizing Bi Visibility Day, this is a historic celebration as the first full-fledged Bi Pride celebration hosted by any U.S. city,” Ian Lawrence-Tourinho, president of the amBi network, tells the site.
amBi wants to“to build a world in which our bisexuality is a clear source of pride, joy, and strength” — according to Ian Lawrence-Tourinho.
“Ostensibly LGBT events and LGBT organizations fail time and time again to address bi issues. Just a few years ago, it was common for amBi to get booed hand heckled by gays and lesbians in the crowd as we marched in the LA Pride parade. We still get hostile people coming up to us at the festival every year,” Lawrence-Tourinho stated.
Bisexuals are often mistaken for straight or gay. “Short of carrying bi flags around all day, to be visibly bi we’d have to walk hand in hand with at least two people who aren’t the same sex,” Lawrence-Tourinho says. Furthermore, there is a common misconception that bisexuals are treated better in the Heterosexual world, but a recent study found that most will experience a “higher risk for poor mental health outcomes” than gay or straight peers.
The bi population will get their moment in the spotlight as West Hollywood gears up for the Bi-Pride event.
“This is our first crack at this and the event will certainly evolve a great deal in the future,” adds Lawrence-Tourinho, “but we definitely would like to continue every year and create a model of celebration and visibility that can be duplicated in other cities around the globe.”
The New York Yankees are planning events to remember and celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots. The team came under fire for being one of two clubs in the Major Leagues to not hold any LGBT Pride events.
But the team has announced that it is planning several major events to honor the Stonewall riots that occurred in 1969 at the Stonewall Inn, a gay bar, in which many regard as the foundations of the modern LGBT rights movement.
SportsNews New York writer Andy Martino said: “According to major league sources, the Yankees have been quietly planning significant events for next season to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, a seminal event in both the history of LGBTQ rights and New York City.”
“While a Yankees spokesman said it was too early to confirm any specifics of the 2019 promotional calendar, other sources said that the team continues to work out details of Stonewall-centered events. ‘Specifics have not been finalized, but I hear that the final plan is likely to include activities both inside and outside the ballpark.”
The team acknowledged that they have been working on LGBT events long before it was criticized for not hosting a Pride night. Martino added the club is “focused on the Stonewall anniversary as a way to push the standard Pride Nights to a deeper level.”
The Stonewall Inn, in New York City’s Greenwich Village for many played a major role in LGBT history. It was the location for a series of riots in June 1969, by members of the community all in response to a police raid.
Two activists Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera who were gender non-conforming, thus sparking the entire civil rights movement and the very reason we celebrate Pride Month and celebrated in June.
Some of the earliest Pride marched started in 1970, and in some countries Pride is still referred to as Christopher Street Day Parades the location of the pub.