Gallup on S/S marriage
The most current Gallup poll shows 70 percent of adults in the U.S. support same-sex marriage. That’s up from 26 percent in 1996. Majorities in all age groups are supportive: 80 percent of young adults, 72 percent of middle-aged adults, and 60 percent of older adults. Politically, 80 percent of Democrats support it, unchanged for some years, but for the first time a majority of Republicans, 55 percent, report supporting S/S marriage.
Good news on the LGBT/bakery connection. “Confections,” a bakery in Lufkin, Texas, announced it would feature rainbow cookies for Pride Month. After the announcement, the trolls on Facebook posted negative messages and some customers canceled orders. The bakery told its story on Facebook and users stepped up and did something nice. By the following day, Confections was inundated with messages of support from Lufkin and around the country. One non-Lufkin poster bought the canceled cookie orders and had them donated to LGBTQ charities and other nonprofits in the area. Locals flooded the bakery, A TV news drone showed video of people flooding Confections’ brick and mortar location. By the end of the day, Confections posted that it had sold out of its entire inventory of baked goods.
RNC Pride earns slaps
Can’t please everyone, especially Mitt Romney’s niece — Republican National Committee Chair Ronna McDaniel. She tweeted her support for Pride Month and faced immediate slap back. She tweeted, “the Republican Party was proud to have doubled our LGBTQ support over the last 4 years” and said the party would “continue to grow our big tent by supporting measures that promote fairness and balance protections for LGBTQ Americans and those with deeply held religious beliefs.” An immediate slap came from mild-mannered Chasten Buttigieg, who called out McDaniel to, “Re-visit your party’s platform before you open your mouth about #pride.” From the other side, Tony Perkins, the head of Family Research Council, called on religious conservatives to boycott the RNC, writing in his weekly column, “If McDaniel was looking for a way to end her party’s record-breaking fundraising, she nailed it.”
The ‘King disses hate chicken
In a coup of “pride marketing,’, Burger King used Chick-fil-A’s founder’s history of LGBTQ-unfriendly donations as a reason to relaunch a fried chicken sandwich of their own and donate to LGBTQ causes this month (40 cents for every chicken sandwich sold at BK). The announcement stressed BK will donate “even on Sundays,” an obvious slam against Chick-fil-A’s observance of blue laws. The founder of the purveyor of hate chicken, Dan Cathy, was revealed recently in the media to have donated to organizations pushing back on the passage of the Equality Act, encouraging state legislatures to pass transgender sport-inclusion bans, and filing lawsuits to expand religious exemptions to anti-discrimination laws. Another chain, Popeye’s Chicken, jumped on the pride marketing bandwagon in June as well. Chicken has never been so popular in the LGBT community.
DOD nixes Pride flags
Though the U.S. State Department okayed flying the Rainbow Flag during June at U.S. embassies in countries that wouldn’t be offended, U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin did not reverse the U.S. military’s prohibition of non-military or non-national flags and insignia at official military installations. Austin has introduced several LGBTQ-affirming policies, reversed other LGBTQ-unfriendly policies, and appointed LGBT persons to high ranks in the DOD. But this was a bridge too far, announcing the Pentagon “will maintain existing policy for the display or depiction of unofficial flags.” The White House has not responded to the decision but is expected to say something, as allowing the military to fly the Rainbow Flag was a promise made by the winner in the last presidential campaign
LGBT unfriendly towns targeted
Consumer goods company Unilever has selected locales in the USA that scored a zero on the Human Rights Campaign’s Municipal Equality Index — Monroe, La.; Moore, Okla.; Clemson, S.C.; Florence, Ala.; and towns and cities in need of support in southwest Missouri — as subjects of its “United We Stand’ Pride campaign. HRC’s score measures non-discrimination laws in the U.S. and Unilever picked five communities to profile. A filmmaker, Tourmaline, will create content about life in these communities with an eye to “empower and amplify local LGBTQ+ communities, with this year’s supporting grassroots organizations,” RanaVerse, an advocacy organization working with Unilever explained. “Through careful assessment, we targeted five communities with little to no LGBTQ+ discrimination protections and diverse needs, and use those insights to shape the campaign.” Along with HRC, Unilever will feature and fund local LGBT organizations: Forum for Equality, Freedom Oklahoma, South Carolina Black Pride, the Knights and Orchids Society, and PFLAG Springfield, as partners.
NYPD out of NYC Pride
Heritage of Pride, which organizes NYC Pride events has banned the NYPD uniformed police organization Gay Officers Action League from the parade and other Pride celebrations until at least 2025. Heritage opined that banning police will increase a feeling of safety. “NYC Pride seeks to create safer spaces for the LGBTQIA+ and BIPOC communities at a time when violence against marginalized groups, specifically BIPOC and trans communities, has continued to escalate. NYC Pride is unwilling to contribute in any way to creating an atmosphere of fear or harm for members of the community.” Private security and emergency services, using off-duty NYPD officers, will be used in place of police. NYPD will still provide traffic control. GOAL sued the NYPD in 1996 to be able to use a police van and the department marching band at Pride events.
Religious discrimination defended by DOJ
Delighting political enemies and confounding political friends, the U.S. Department of Justice announced it will defend Christian schools’ religious freedom to discriminate against LGBTQ students. Thirty-three LGBTQ students have filed a class-action lawsuit against the Department of Education, saying religious exemptions in Title IX of the DOE statute resulted in harassment, conversion therapy, expulsion, and humiliation. The DOJ, part of an administration supporting the Equality Act which proposes bans on religious businesses and organizations from using the Religious Freedom and Restoration Act, says in a filing, “The administration and the Christian schools’ interests are identical to uphold the Religious Exemption as it is currently applied [in Title IX].” The DOJ brief is in response to “The Council of Christian Colleges and Universities” attempt to intervene in the case, saying the DOJ wouldn’t provide a thorough defense and “may be openly hostile” to the cause. Maybe judicial jujitsu on the part of the DOJ?
Soccer fans delay Denver game
Referees and team ownership “paused” a CONCACAF Nations League soccer game in Denver because some fans were chanting “Puto” just before the game went into overtime. It took three minutes for officials to get the fans to stop chanting the word, considered an anti-gay slur. Rumors are that the chanting stopped after a Denver Drag queen stood up, faced the hecklers, pulled off her earrings, and yelled, “Don’t make me come up there.” In overtime, the U.S. team won the game 3–2. The CONCACAF Nations League is made up of national teams from North America, Central America, and the Caribbean and not affiliated with Major League Soccer. “Puto” is used as a slur, ESPN reported, by some fans at Mexican national games and games in other Latin American countries. CONCACAF rules call for a pause when fans use the chant. If the chanting continues, then the referee can send teams back to the locker rooms and even end the game.