The UN Wants Us To Be Free & Equal and Naya Rivera Looks Good In Pink This Sunday Funday

Happy Sunday Funday, queerz! I turned 23 at International Autostraddle Summer Brunch Day. Isn’t that so neat?


geneva and i, round one

The UN Loves You – and Desmond Tutu, Too

The UN this week launched a global campaign for LGBT equality called “Free & Equal.” Like Sweet ‘n’ Low, but good for human rights.

At a press conference held in Cape Town, South Africa, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay was joined by Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu and Justice Edwin Cameron of the South African Constitutional Court to announce the year-long project. A statement of support was read out on behalf of renowned South African singer and UNICEF and Roll Back Malaria Goodwill Ambassador Yvonne Chaka Chaka.

“The Universal Declaration of Human Rights promises a world in which everyone is born free and equal in dignity and rights – no exceptions, no one left behind,” said High Commissioner Pillay. “Yet it’s still a hollow promise for many millions of LGBT people forced to confront hatred, intolerance, violence and discrimination on a daily basis.”

“Changing attitudes is never easy. But it has happened on other issues and it is happening already in many parts of the world on this one. It begins with often difficult conversations,” Pillay went on to say. “And that is what we want to do with this campaign. Free & Equal will inspire millions of conversations among people around the world and across the ideological spectrum.”


The campaign, which educates around issues of anti-gay and anti-trans* violence and discrimination also encourages “greater respect for the rights of LGBT people.” Desmond Tutu jumped into action by declaring that he will not rest in a homophobic heaven, which is kinda a bummer ’cause he probs has a fine-ass suite reserved on Cloud 9.

Nobel Peace Prize laureate and South African archbishop emeritus Desmond Tutu said he does not believe religion provides justification for homophobia at a rally hosted by the United Nations Human Rights Office in Cape Town, South Africa, on Friday.

“I would refuse to go to a homophobic heaven,” Tutu said, according to Australia’s Herald Sun. “No, I would say sorry, I mean I would much rather go to the other place… I would not worship a God who is homophobic and that is how deeply I feel about this.”


Badass Retired Pastors: “F*ck Y’all, We’re Marrying the Gays”

In Nevada, five retired Methodist ministers are putting an end to the tomfoolery of their church (and state) by placing the vows in their own hands and marrying the gays.

Naya Rivera Wears Pink

What’s your name, pretty girl, tell me what’s your name

naya rivera

I’m Comin’ Out

Julie Hermann is the athletics director at Rutgers University. In completely unexpected news, she’s gay.

The last line in her Rutgers bio now reads, “Hermann and her partner Dr. Leslie Danehy are the proud parents of a 7-year-old son, Aidan,” which was previously omitted from her biography, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.

ESPN reports that Hermann is one of only three female athletic directors at the FBS level, and one of very few athletic directors in Division I college sports who are openly gay.

Hermann was previously a volleyball coach for University of Tennessee and the University of Louisville’s athletic director. She told ESPN that she and her partner were “really blessed to have a wonderful family, and we’re excited to become part of the Rutger’s community.”

Fuck Yeah Arrested Development

Arrested Development is coming back! AGAIN. HOLY FUCK!


Meanwhile, In Bosnia…

Bosnia has adopted an anti-hate crime law that includes queers and trans* folks.

Baby Fruit Bats

Like I said.

I bet you never thought you’d want to hug a bat? Or if you did, I would’ve called you a major weirdo until this very moment.

Meet Trish Wimberley of the Australian Bat Clinic, she fosters orphaned baby bats and is a hero to lovers of cutest ever YouTube videos.

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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 919 articles for us.


  1. Oh god the bats!!! – I always thought they looked cool without ever seeing them close up!
    Now I find they are like tiny adorable bears with awesome wings!
    I need to find something like this to do in the UK – bats are now a major hole in my life.
    Brb, setting up a bat sanctuary.

  2. Desmond Tutu!! It’s so great to hear Archbishop Desmond Tutu’s comments against homophobia as I think it could have a very genuine impact on how homosexuality is viewed in SA. His quotes on the matter have been plastered everywhere this week and is definitely something that has been taken notice of in a big way. I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that other than Madiba, Tutu is probably the most widely admired and respected person in South Africa. He is almost universally well liked. He also has immense standing as a Christian theologian, so his pro gay rights stance is huge in a country where queers are really still struggling a great deal to find societal acceptance and gay marriage is only legal because we have a great constitution (post-apartheid) which protects against discrimination. (Ruth Bader Ginsburg said so, so it must be true.)

  3. I live in London and yesterday a bat flew into my bedroom and got stuck flying round and round the light until (about 15 minutes later!) it finally flew out. At the time I was very freaked out. Now I have watched this video I want one as a pet!

    The rest of this post was great, but the bats at the end totally distracted me from commenting on anything else!

  4. I don’t think it’s been mentioned on autostraddle yet that Sarah Huffman came out! Yay Huffy!

    I thought this was a good thing to be in the Sunday Funday.

    • Mana Shim who plays with the Thorns came out too (I have no idea if she was “publicly” out before, but she specifically mentioned it in her athlete ally statement).

  5. Oh and Heather Peace married her girlfriend the other day now that it’s legal in the U.K.!

  6. THE BAT VIDEO! Okay, so I have to admit I qualify as a “major weirdo” because I’ve loved bats for years, and I’ve never seen baby bats before. I even have a bat tattooed on my upper arm.

  7. Unfortunately the UN doesn’t treat its own LGBT employees as equal as they don’t recognise same-sex marriage equally to different-sex marriage. (I work there.)
    This has implications for pay, benefits and visas as well as more minor things like access to the premises.
    Some of these things are available to divorced spouses, so they consider a gay marriage less legitimate than a straight divorce.
    It also means that they are disregarding their Member State’s decisions about whom they grant a legal marriage.
    So, when in glass houses…

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