Hey-o, tapioca pearls and organic fruit smoothies! This is my debut Sunday Funday and may I just tell you that I’m freakin’ jazzed. The world is full of so much shitty shit shit and I’m just tickled to bring you some good news to start your week.
Right now my human dino baby is vigorously jumping around in her Jumperoo. She’s squealing and flapping her arms and she lost a sock in the process and boi howdy, I wish anything made me as happy as jumping is making her right now.
Let’s do this thing.
America Writer and Autostraddle Fave, Gabby Rivera, is “Dope as Hell”
+ Gabby Fucking Rivera is killing it right now as the first-ever queer Latina writing a comic about a queer Latina superhero and the first queer Latina writer at Marvel Comics, period. Have you picked up your copy of America #1 yet? Mey interviewed her first, for the record (and you should go read the Autostraddle interview right NOW if you haven’t because it’s fuckin’ great), but also Gabby was interviewed by the Washington Post this week, like whoa!
I get to see groups of little brown girls and their moms all done up in their America Chavez cosplay gear. And the stories that we tell through ‘America’ will be part of their pop culture experience… And, hell yeah, there’s pressure, but also I love it and it’s making me a better writer. It’s a blessing.
+ Gabby also did this lil’ interview for The Advocate about writing America Chavez, where she answers the very important question of whether America will have any romantic storylines, to which she replied:
America’s a vibrant young, fierce, and gorgeous superhero babe. You can bet your Yeezys that she’s going to be dating. But it’s not going to be some heavy meditation on the stresses, inequities, and violence faced by LGBTQ people. We get enough of that in the news and in personal essays. That work is vital and important. But America’s series is meant to be a space of joy and fantasy. I also want it to be a healing piece of media/art so that folks who are being beaten down by the system and life in general can laugh and cheer and get a moment to breathe easy in this chaotic world. We get to watch America, an unapologetically queer Latina, deal with everyday love stuff. I’m so ready for that, aren’t you?
Boston St. Paddy’s Day Parade Gets a Taste of the Rainbow
The organizers of the St. Patrick’s Day parade in Boston, MA, voted unanimously to allow OutVets, a LGBTQ veterans organization, to march in the parade this weekend. Initially, OutVets was barred from participating following a vote of the South Boston Allied War Veterans Council, the organizers of the parade. The Council has a long history of banning participation of gay groups, even litigating the issue to the Supreme Court (and winning) in 1995. Gay organizations were allowed to participate for the first time in 2015.
Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker (a Republican!), Boston Mayor Marty Walsh, State Senator Linda Dorcena Forry, Congressmember Seth Moulton, and Congressmember Stephen Lynch were among those who spoke out in support of OutVets and vowed not to participate unless the Council reversed their decision.
Local sponsors pulled out and veterans spoke publicly against the decision. The honorary veteran parade marshall who was set to lead the parade stepped down in support of OutVets.
Ultimately, the parade’s lead organizer, Tim Duross, made the unilateral decision to allow OutVets, since he couldn’t convince the other members of the Council. His name was on the permit, so he was able to make the decision without Council support. “It may be my last decision as parade organizer, but it’s the right thing to do,” he said. Later, the Council took up the vote again and unanimously agreed to support Duross’ decision to allow OutVets to participate.
Bills, Bills, Bills
+ 15 Florida Republicans have signed onto the Competitive Workforce Act, a bill that would ban discrimination against LGBT people in employment, housing, and businesses. While more GOP support would be needed to pass the bill, it’s a “seismic shift” according to Hannah Willard of Equality Florida. Willard said, “What we saw over the last five years, especially, is a growing number of people who understand LGBT equality does not have to be a partisan issue.”
+ Massachusetts LGBTQ and repro rights orgs’ ambitious 2017 agenda includes a bill that would help train elder service providers on how to appropriately care for LGBTQ seniors, a ban on conversion therapy, a bill to make it easier for minors to access confidential health care, a bill requiring insurance companies to reimburse for HIV and STI testing, and a comprehensive sex ed bill.
Said Arline Isaacson, co-chair of the Massachusetts Gay and Lesbian Political Caucus, said:
State legislators are more important now than ever before to protect us, to protect our freedoms and to protect us against the excesses and the overreach of the Trump administration. I hope that the LGBTQ community will understand their interconnectedness with other groups. We’ve got to work together if we are going to defeat these lousy proposals.
Pride Is a Protest March, Again
Stonewall was a police riot. Pride is a commemoration of the annual protest march started by the Gay Liberation Front following the Stonewall riots. However, Pride in many major cities has become more of a capitalism-sponsored celebratory dance party, with corporate banners instead of protest signs.
The decision is one part logistical issues and one part the current political climate, but I’m not complaining! 250,000-500,000 people are expected to attend L.A. Pride.
Get Yer Tissues Out
Taiwan is poised to legalize same-sex marriage this year, which would make Taiwan the first Asian country to legalize marriage equality. Businesses are already clamoring for that pink dollar. But try to put your feelings about late-stage capitalism aside to enjoy this video by HSBC Bank in Taiwan of a bride being walked down the aisle by her boss after her father refused. Look, I’m not a wedding traditionalist or romantic by any means. I’m not even strongly in the pro-marriage equality camp, but this is pretty… heartwarming. And her dog is SO FLUFF. GODDAMMIT, HSBC!
Finally, Darlene Connor Comes Out to Her Dad!
Oh, Sara Gilbert… look at you now…