It’s Sunday Funday – Put On Your Sunglasses, Get Naked, and Get Civil Unionized

The UK is Full of Happy Gay People

There are two reasons I am happy with news from the United Kingdom:

Fewer lesbian and gay couples get divorced in the UK than straight couples.

+ A Jamaican lesbian was granted asylum in the UK after an appeal on her initial rejection. Immigration judges agreed with her attorney that “a deeply homophobic society” like Jamaica is no place for an out queer woman, especially one who had lived in the UK for 7 years in a long-term relationship.

Everyone’s In Love in Illinois

More than 1,600 couples in Illinois got civil unions in the first month of their being legal. The law allowing gay civil unions, signed in January, took effect in June. At the close of the month Equality Illinois asked county clerks for their numbers, but it is predicted that the 1,618 couples they counted in over 80 percent of the state’s counties is actually an understatement.

Lesbian Androids

Janelle Monae has always been circumspect about her personal life, answering questions about her sexual orientation by explaining that she “only dates androids.” But now maybe she’s revealing that more about what that means? In a new interview with The Evening Standard, Monae says: “That’s great, they can claim me as well as the straight community, as well as androids,” she says. “I speak about androids because I think the android represents the new ‘other’. You can compare it to being a lesbian or being a gay man or being a black woman … What I want is for people who feel oppressed or feel like the ‘other’ to connect with the music and to feel like, ‘She represents who I am’.” She also says she’ll talk about her sexual orientation “in due time… when I’m ready to have a family and be out and in public with my family.” So… not NOT coming out?

Presbyterians Open Doors To Gay People

Jeannia Oakes wants to be a pastor but she’s a lesbian. And to that she says, who gives a fuck:

“I need to be fully who I am, and the church needs to accept that. God calls me to both things equally, to be who I am and to be a pastor of the church.”

The ban on gay pastors in the Presbyterian Church ends today because of Oakes, who asked her church to endorse her and then went on to receive the proper instruction for her service. The Fourth Presbyterian Church, which Oakes attended, accepted gay parishioners and taught her that gay people could actually be a part of religious institutions. Sounds crazy, right?

And even though it was a long challenge to an ever longer-upheld ban, Oakes was willing to fight through it for God:

“God wasn’t giving up on me. I wasn’t giving up on God.”

Churches have the right to opt back in to the ban on gay clergy, but for now, Oakes is on Cloud 9. Let’s hang out there for a second.

Let’s Get Naked and Do Yoga

Doing yoga naked sounds awkward, right? Well, get over it. It’s good for your mental body image, confidence, and attitude. Plus, it still has all the old benefits of yoga and everyone else will be naked.

Vancouver’s Saturday in the Park

Northbank, the only gay bar in Vancouver, is no longer open. But hey, the gay people there still exist! And the 17th annual Saturday in the Park, an event in downtown Vancouver put on by Saturday in the Park Pride, celebrated the LGBT community of the city with an even bigger turnout than last year. Beer, drag queens, and rainbow balloons were included.

People Apologizing To Us

Two major league athletes this week came forward and apologized for being total homophobic jerks.

DeSean Jackson of the Eagles apologized for saying a multi-word homophobic slur on a radio program last month – on Twitter:

“I am sorry for using words that I know to be hurtful and unacceptable in a recent radio interview,” Jackson tweeted Saturday. “I have made a mistake and would like to make it clear that words I used meant no disrespect to the Gay and Lesbian community. Intolerance is unacceptable and I apologize to anyone I have offended.”

And Chicago White Sox second baseman Gordon Beckham apologized for calling his former teammate Chris Getz gay as a big funny joke at a game:

“Obviously I apologize and kind of want to move on. Obviously it was meant as a joke but obviously it was in the wrong place and I didn’t mean it that way. I will just try to move on. …It’s one of those things that was unfortunate that happened and I want to try to move on from it.”

Nautical Photo Shoot Day

There is only one thing I want to do today, and that’s have a nautical-themed photoshoot for the New York Times. They’re collecting photos of girls on sailboats – er, of nautical-themed outfits for their Street Style column from people around the globe, and their favorites will be featured. So if you’ve got some stripes, or anchors, or anything else you saw on Tumblr, go ahead and submit. I bet you look so nice in blue stripes and brass buttons.

I Really Love Sunglasses

Magnum Photos and Slate Present: Sunglasses, or at least 23 great photos of them.

Britney Goes Down (South)

The Femme Fatale Tour is going to be hitting additional cities – in South America. Sources reported she is going to go to Colombia, Mexico, Brazil, and maybe Argentina, Chile, Venezuela, and Peru.

This Puppy Is Excited

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Carmen spent six years at Autostraddle, ultimately serving as Straddleverse Director, Feminism Editor and Social Media Co-Director. She is now the Consulting Digital Editor at Ms. and writes regularly for DAME, the Women’s Media Center, the National Women’s History Museum and other prominent feminist platforms; her work has also been published in print and online by outlets like BuzzFeed, Bitch, Bust, CityLab, ElixHER, Feministing, Feminist Formations, GirlBoss, GrokNation, MEL, Mic and SIGNS, and she is a co-founder of Argot Magazine. You can find Carmen on Twitter, Instagram and Tumblr or in the drive-thru line at the nearest In-N-Out.

Carmen has written 921 articles for us.

23 Comments

  1. Actually, while the ban of gay ordination in the Presbyterian Church is officially no more today, the vote to remove the ban actually was won in May. It needed 87 regions, or presbyteries, to pass; by the end of the vote it got 97 (it hit 87 with presbyteries still left to vote). Before that vote, Presbyterian pastors from all over the country had to vote to even get it on the list of things to vote about (it was called Amendment 10-A, if you’re curious). So, while it’s SUPER awesome that Oakes will get the chance to be a pastor (I myself am a bisexual lady starting school to be a Presbyterian pastor as well), she’s only one part of the fight/win. It took the Church as a whole to make this wonderful thing happen.

    • It’s kind of wonderful that the momentum is there across the whole Church, rather than just being an individual victory… since that indicates things are changing across the board.

      I am Anglican by birth and non-denominational by inclination ;) but I wish you all the best for your studies and vocation!!

      • Thanks! The whole situation is interesting because even in the presbyteries that voted no (aka anti-gay ordination), there are still GLBT friendly churches. My presbytery is one of the most conservative in the country, yet there are at least 3 or 4 GLBT friendly Presby churches here who would LOVE to ordain a queer person. In places where the vote was yes, that number is even higher. It’s nice that, in a world where people are using religion to hate on folks, there are people showing that that is NOT what it should be about (and that it’s getting coverage).

  2. Sunday Funday Buzzkill:

    I wonder if the UK divorce numbers would be similar if they looked at different groups, such as: the age of the people getting married, how long they’d been together before getting married, etc. For some time, I think gay/lesbian government-recognized marriage stats will look good, but maybe only because the couples getting their papers were basically already committed/married to each other.

    Also, the original source article headline: Lesbians twice as likely as gay men to separate: survey. Nice.

  3. It’s nice that they apologized, but both quotes kind of read like “I’m sorry I said homophobic things, but it’s not like I meant them offensively anyway.”
    They sound like they’re only apologizing because they have to and still are looking for a way to excuse what they said.

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