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There are some days you’d just rather not look at the phone, turn on a TV, scroll through any timeline or newsfeed, listen to the radio, or be connected in any way, shape, or form to the outside world. Bad news has a way of clouding bright and hopeful visions of society and humanity. The moment we begin to feel like there are steps being taken in the right direction, we’re quickly reminded of the relentlessness of those who hate.

There’s no wrapping your head around what is now labeled the deadliest mass shooting in US history and deadliest terrorist attack since 9/11These are the things I honestly wish I did not have to write about. But there’s a lot to be said about the homophobia that still exists and remains to be an engine behind horrific attacks like what happened at Pulse Nightclub in Orlando, FL.

At least 50 people were killed and more than 50 others were wounded…

– NBCNews.com

People generally don’t like to hear that we have a responsibility to one another, but I feel like that is only when it comes to showing others the right way. Homophobia is taught faithfully in our churches, in our homes, it is passed on so easily in our schools and even on the streets. To take the opportunity to teach others about acceptance seems like pulling teeth, and that may be because it conflicts with the morals of so many people. It’s easier to teach our sons and daughters that identifying or associating themselves with the LGBTQ community will lead to shame and ruin than it is to show them how gratifying and liberating it is to accept oneself and others. Where we go wrong is assuming that only LGBTQ people have a hard life, and that we’d rather not have that for the next generation. That’s only further perpetuating a cycle that we’re trying to avoid. No one wants a hard life, especially for their kids, but it shouldn’t have to cost things like dignity, integrity, or sometimes even lives, to pursue that. What we need to really understand to its fullest extent is realistically, there will be people out there who will dislike you regardless of how you identify. This shouldn’t stop any of us from pursuing our own happiness; we shouldn’t be stifled with fear because of paranoia.

On the other hand, we have moments like the attack on Pulse, where what was supposed to be a night of people enjoying themselves during LGBTQ Pride Month ended up being a killing spree for a terrorist (now identified as Omar Mateen). omar-mateenThis only proves that we aren’t safe, even in the places where we’re limited to exist freely, without disrupting the societal norm. Mateen’s father said that Omar had recently gotten angry after seeing two men kissing, which may have inspired the attack. While I don’t want to minimize everything it took to bring this man to kill 50 people and wound 50+ others, I will say that there is nothing surprising about this. Homophobes tend to become so wrapped up in hurt when they see gay men specifically living their lives, simply existing, loving freely and openly. I’ve been exposed to it myself and will testify. They try to take matters into their own hands–which has lead to so many searchable hate crimes and killings that have been reported in the media. It’s sickening.

A word of advice and in relation to the very first sentence of this post: when tragedy strikes and you’re trying to avoid being angry because of it, stay away from social media. I did the wrong thing by searching hashtags and reading comments, even after expecting exactly what I read. IMG_6699Comments like “AIDS all over the dance floor” and other disgusting tweets were sent out in the wake of the massacre. It goes without saying that this shit is no laughing matter, but it takes a strong case of stupid to make a dark time a laughing matter. Ignorance is the breeding grounds for a hoard of other undesirable characteristics like bitterness, poor timing, and terrible sense of humor, just to name a few. Retweets and likes mean more to us than human lives. Validation from those we’ve never met holds more weight than the slain souls who could’ve easily been us. A wake up call for social media comedians is needed, and some of them get the reality slap they deserve. What drives people to make light of a massacre is beyond me, but what I do know is that there is power in just a little bit of research…

IMG_6702

TEA

There are countless others who felt the need to chime in on the foolery, but we won’t shed anymore spotlights on assholes. They’re meant to stay in the dark. Moving on, it was reported earlier that the gunman was a regular at Pulse in Orlando and even had a profile on a gay dating app.

…  Read more at FonzFranc.com

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For The Culture

We Support Black Queer Youth. Including Zion Wade.

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Gabrielle Union Dwyane Wade Zion Wade

Dwyane Wade and Gabrielle Union supported their son, Zion Wade, at Miami Pride and there’s something I need our community to understand — Until you value ALL Black lives, you don’t believe Black lives matter.

Growing up as the daughter of a Black man who stated he would disown me for my queerness, I celebrate the love and support Dwyane and Gabrielle shower Zion with. It’s one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen and something that should be afforded to everyone within the LGBTQIA+ community indiscriminately. However, several troglodytic, backwards people believe that rather than protection, Zion deserves correction.

At 11-years-old, Zion Wade has expressed ownership of his identity. I applaud him. When I was 11, I was a victim of the same ridiculous banter all children hear. “Look at you and [random heterosexual boy], y’all are so cute together. I can’t wait until y’all grow up!” The same people who push children into heterosexual relationships without question are currently asking “How old is Zion? Isn’t he too young for this? How does he even know he’s gay?” as if queerness ebbs and flows like the tide. As if his identity comes later in life like a Pokemon evolution. The level of homophobia in the Black community during a time when we are losing more children to suicide because of their queerness and our community’s refusal to accept them is baffling.

It is difficult enough in this country to survive as a Black person without the added stress of being shunned by your own community. So many queer people find themselves without unconditional love, which results in them fleeing hostile living conditions and facing homelessness. And we have the audacity to wonder why children like Jamel Myles die by suicide at the age of 9.

If you are unable or unwilling to show up for queer Black youth, you’re just going to have to square up in 2019.

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LGBTQ

Perez Hilton Faces Harsh Criticism For Outing Son of Brunei Sultan

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Perez Hilton Brunei

Following the news that the Nation of Brunei would be enacting a Sharia law policy, celebrities and LGBT advocates spoke out against the injustice. Stating that the punishment for homosexuality and adultery is death by stoning, the law prompted a boycott of nine hotels owned by the Sultan in a viral campaign. For Perez Hilton, the boycott simply wasn’t enough. In a tasteless, insensitive, and life-threatening action, the gossip blogger outed the Sultan’s son.

In a recent YouTube video, Perez Hilton alleged that the Prince Azim, who is fourth in the line of succession, is gay. Although Perez understands that the law is “tantamount to LGBT genocide,” he fails to see that his decision to out the young prince is equally dangerous. Stating “It’s so hypocritical. This guy’s son is a big flamer, and now he’s enacted a law to stone to death gay men,” Perez believed that outing Prince Azim was for “the greater good.” However, the blogger has been on the defensive as few agree with his approach.

Advocates and members of the LGBT+ community assert Perez has placed the 36-year-old royal in the line of fire for a potential honor killing. According to Matthew Woolfe, a human rights group founder, the Sultan has been working diligently in an effort to clean up the family’s reputation. Known for a lifestyle of excess and filled with several controversies this sudden adoption of Sharia Penal Code is purportedly due to his desire to create a more palatable legacy. Perez’s recent admission poses a significant threat to Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah’s legacy, his outed son Azim, and even Perez himself.

In Harm’s Way

Before his unverified admission, Perez said the following:

“Y’all know I don’t out people anymore. I used to do that back in the day, but I’m making an exception here. I’m guessing the Sultan of Brunei doesn’t know that his son, Prince Azim, is a big old homo. I would know because I have spent time with him.”

Although Perez insists that neither he nor the Sultan’s son are in harm’s way because the law requires four Muslim witnesses, Brunei locals tell a different story. According to Shahiran S Shahrani who spoke with BBC News, queer citizens are living in fear.

“The gay community in Brunei has never been open but when Grindr came that helped people meet in secret. But now, what I’ve heard is that hardly anyone is using Grindr anymore. They’re afraid that they might talk to a police officer pretending to be gay. It hasn’t happened yet, but because of the new laws, people are afraid.”

As far as whether or not Perez is feeling remorse, outing queer people in violent environments is the hill he has chosen to die on.

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LGBTQ

Dating With HIV

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