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Sainthood for Victim #1

First responders run towards danger. That goes for their chaplains. Father Mychal Judge, a Roman Catholic chaplain with the New York City Fire Department, died along with about 3,000 people in the September 11, 2001, terror attacks. Judge became known as “Victim #1” because he was the first recorded death after the attack. Now, New Ways Ministry, a national Catholic ministry promoting the rights of LGBT people, is working to have him declared a saint. He was struck and killed by falling debris in the North Tower of the World Trade Center. Judge had spent 40 years as chaplain to the NYPD and NYFD as well as often working with LGBT groups. In 1989 he founded one of the first Catholic HIV ministries that visited hospitalized patients and their families. He joined the city’s fire department in 1992. The Vatican contacted New Ways about canonization for Father Judge for his “good works.”

“Mychal Judge shows us that you can be gay and holy,” says James Martin, a Jesuit priest who advocates for LGBT inclusion in the church.

HRC fires executive in Cuomo scandal

The recently hired Human Rights Campaign president, Alphonso David, has been fired due to his involvement with resigned New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo. He was a chief legal counsel for the governor and was implicated by the New York Attorney General’s report on sexual harassment by the governor. The report alleged David was involved in covering up Cuomo’s misdeeds. HRC’s statement said David had not been truthful with the organization, “At HRC, we are fighting to bring full equality and liberation to LGBTQ+ People everywhere. That includes fighting on behalf of all victims of sexual harassment and assault.” David called the firing unjust, “As a Black, gay man who has spent his whole life fighting for civil and human rights, they cannot shut me up.”

Chasten (left) and Pete Buttigieg hold their newly adopted twin babies

Twins for Mayor Pete and Chasten

The most non-threatening gay couple in history — U. S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and husband Chasten Buttigieg — announced they adopted twins. The twins, named Penelope Rose and Joseph August Buttigieg, were revealed as “girl and boy” but no pronouns were specified. Buttigieg is the former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, and was a 2020 presidential candidate. He is the first openly gay cabinet secretary confirmed by the Senate and is now an influential member of the Washington establishment. Chasten Buttigieg is an author and educator.

Don’t Show Me state

A speech and drama teacher in Missouri resigned after refusing to sign a letter stating that he would not tell students that he’s gay. He was hired for the 2021/22 term in St Louis, his first job after graduating from college. He put up a sign that said, “In this classroom, everyone is welcome” and had a rainbow flag on his bookshelf. Some parents saw the flag and complained to school officials that he “was going to teach their child to be gay.” The school district and Missouri anti-discrimination policies do not include sexual orientation, so the Superintendent of Schools sent him a letter telling him not to show “his status” and included a list of other prohibitions. After refusing to sign, teacher John Wallis resigned and filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights.

Green Power Ranger is lesbian

During Disney’s Sentai-based Power Rangers 28th season, titled ”Dino Fury’”, the first Ranger who is unabashedly an LGBT person was introduced. It’s a low-key “outing” showing Green Ranger Izzy Garcia holding her girlfriend’s hand in an upcoming episode. The episode has already been shown in France. No U.S. air date for the episode has been announced. Fan reaction has been positive. Some critics say it’s a marketing move, but the producers of the kids’ series, which has extended the brand to costumes, breakfast cereals, toys, games, and trading cards announced on Twitter, “I assure you; it was no marketing ploy.” 

What’s Spanish for Smollett?

A gay man in Madrid created a minor media stir when it was revealed he was beaten, taunted for being gay, and the attackers carved, “maricón” (“faggot” in Spanish) on his butt. The alleged hate crime shocked the country and a protest was organized. Spanish Prime Minister condemned the alleged attack, saying “Hate has no place in our society.” Police were skeptical as there was no physical evidence of the attack other than the butt carving — no security camera footage, no witnesses, and the attack was called in by the man’s partner. After further police interviews, he admitted he made it up. The butt carving was done, “at the house of another person with whom I had a sexual relationship.” He said he lied to stay with his current partner. The organization, Movimiento Marika Madrid, went ahead with the protest saying “qué demonios” (what the hell), the numerous anti-LGBTQ hate crimes this year in Spain justified it.

Trolling Grindr for Gov. Newsom

Democratic California State Assemblymember Evan Low joined Grindr in an effort to stop the Republican recall of California Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom. On his profile, he wrote, “Hello beautiful! I’m on here to urge you to VOTE NO on the Republican Recall! Governor Gavin Newsom has consistently stood for equality and our LGBTQ community. Now let us all be there for him.” Low represents South Bay and Silicon Valley in the California State Assembly. He is Assistant Majority Whip and chairs the California Assembly Business and Professions Committee. He was sponsor of the law that bans all California state-funded travel to states that enacted laws to discriminate against LGBT individuals. No word if Low got any Grindr action with such a provocative profile.

Gay Democratic donor Ed Buck convicted in deaths

Even representation by Christopher Darden, best known for being part of the prosecution team in the murder trial of O.J. Simpson, couldn’t save political Democratic donor Ed Buck from conviction to a series of federal charges brought against him, including maintaining a drug den, distributing methamphetamine, enticement to cross state lines to engage in prostitution, and providing the drugs that led to the deaths of Gemmel Moore and Timothy Dean. It took jurors just four-and-a-half hours to convict the 66-year-old LGBT activist on the nine counts he was facing. Arrested and charged in 2019 with operating a drug house, prosecutors called him a violent sexual predator who preys on men struggling with addiction and homelessness. The two men died in his apartment but there wasn’t enough evidence to charge him with murder.

Is “B” misunderstood?

New research provides evidence that there are differences in perceptions of female and male bisexuality. Published in the European Journal of Social Psychology, researchers found that bisexual men were more likely to be viewed as being attracted to men more than women, while bisexual women were thought to be experimenting and equally attracted to men and women. The survey showed heterosexual, lesbian, and gay participants all perceived bisexual men as more attracted to men than to women. Said the lead researcher, Thekla Morgenroth, “I noticed that people often don’t believe that bisexual people are actually bisexual.” Those surveyed said bisexual men haven’t “come out” yet. They also found little evidence for, “erasure of female bisexuality,” indicating female bisexuality is a more accepted status. 

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