Family, it’s your favorite queer radio personality Anna DeShawn and this is Queer News. Your fav weekly news pod where race & sexuality meet politics, culture, and entertainment.
Now I really need you to tap in because I know how it is. Y’all hear the beginning of the show every week and you kind of tune out. I get it but I really need you to tap in because I need your help. I want to know more about you. I want to know more about what you like about the show. I want to know what you’d like to see with the show. So I’ve put together a quick survey. The survey will take you about 4 minutes to complete. Once you complete the survey you enter to win a $50 gift card. The link is in the show notes but you can also find it on my IG & TikTok profiles.Thank you so in advance.
Now, a couple of week’s ago you heard me report about Sakia Gunn. Well last week I had the opportunity to talk with her cousin Valencia who was there that tragic night. She shared with me what happened, how her life has been for the last 20 years, and why this street naming moment was so significant. To hear the interview you got to join the QCrew.
The QCrew is our Queer News community where you receive a weekly email sharing our top queer news stories, an unedited video from me about the top queer stories, and now exclusive interviews. The QCrew helps to supplement the costs of pod; podcast hosting, editing, marketing, PR, travel, etc. If you believe in the work we do. If you believe LGBTQ stories need to be amplified. If you love and respect how I report on the news and tell our stories, join the QCrew like our newest member, Lucien. Welcome Lucien and thank you for joining us. Come on and join us. A link is in the show notes.
Now for the news. Today is trans day of resilience and we are going to honor our trans siblings today by speaking the names. Speaking the names of all our trans and non-binary siblings we’ve lost in 2023. I think that will be heavy enough for all of us so I’m going to give you a couple of movie recommendations to give you some entertainment this week as well. Let’s go!
Family, today is Trans Day of Resilience.
This is a day to mourn and commemorate the lives of the vibrant, beloved transgender, non-binary, and gender non-conforming siblings lost to violence and suicide in the past year.
This day marks the birthday of Rita Hester, a Black transgender woman who was murdered in 1998. Gwendolyn Ann Smith, a transgender advocate, started TDOR in honor of her friend Rita.
TDOR closes out Transgender Awareness Week that went from Nov. 13-19
Although we will never know how many trans, nonbinary, and non-conforming individuals have been murdered, because many hate crimes are not reported
London Price, a Black trans woman, was killed in Miami-Dade County, Florida on October 23. She was 26 years old.
Lisa Love, a Black trans woman, was killed in Chicago, Illinois on October 17. She was 35 years old.
A’nee Johnson, a Black trans woman, was killed in Washington, DC on October 14. She was 30 years old.
Dominic Dupree (also known as Dominic Palace), a Black gender-nonconforming person, was killed in Chicago, Illinois on October 13. They were 25 years old.
Chyna Long, a Black trans woman, was killed in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on October 8. She was 30 years old.
YOKO (YOUONLYKNOWONE), a Black nonbinary, was killed in New Orleans, Louisiana on September 19. They were 30 years old.
Sherlyn Marjorie, a Latina trans woman, was killed in Albuquerque, New Mexico on September 17. She was 35 years old.
Kylie Monali, a trans woman, was killed in Murrietta, California on September 7. She was 41 years old.
Luis Ángel Díaz Castro, a Latino transgender man, was killed in San Juan, Puerto Rico on August 12. He was 22 years old.
Thomas “Tom-Tom” Robertson, a Black gender non-conforming person, was killed in Calumet City, Illinois on August 17. They were 28 years old.
De’Vonnie J’Rae Johnson, a Black trans woman, was killed in Los Angeles, California on August 7. She was 28 years old.
Jacob Williamson, a white trans man, was killed in Monroe, North Carolina on June 30. He was 18 years old.
Chanell Perez Ortiz, a Latina trans woman, was killed in Carolina, Puerto Rico on June 25. She was 29 years old.
Ashia Davis (also known as Asia Davis), a Black trans woman, was killed in Detroit, Michigan on June 2. She was 34 years old.
Banko Brown (also known as Banko Paso), a Black trans man, was killed in San Francisco, California on April 27. He was 24 years old.
Rasheeda “Koko Da Doll” Williams, a Black trans woman, was killed in Atlanta, Georgia on April 18. She was 35 years old.
Ashley Burton, a Black trans woman, was killed in Atlanta, Georgia on April 11. She was 37 years old.
Tasiyah “Siyah” Woodland, a Black trans woman, was killed in St. Mary’s County, Maryland on March 24. She was 18 years old.
Tortuguita, a Indigenous queer and non-binary individual, was killed in Atlanta, Georgia on January 18. They were 26 years old.
Cashay B. Henderson, a Black trans woman, was killed in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on February 26. She was 31 years old.
Imanitwitaho Zachee, a Black trans woman, was killed in Louisville, Kentucky on February 3. She was 26 years old.
Maria Fer, a Latina trans woman, was killed in Houston, Texas on January 21. She was 22 years old.
Jasmine “Star” Mack, a Black trans woman, was killed in Washington, DC on January 7. She was 36 years old.
Unique Banks, a Latina trans woman, was killed in Chicago, Illinois on January 23. She was 21 years old.
We speak your names today.
Family, welcome back to the show. I’m over here crying, but let me tell you, I want to leave y’all with some good things. Okay. There’s a couple of movies. that have just dropped on Netflix that I think you should go take some time this week and check out because we know how important ratings are and if we want to see more movies like these then we got to watch them, okay?
And if you got that Netflix situation set up, let’s go. The first one I want to tell you about is called The Dance. The Dads, according to Netflix, is a gentle meditation on fatherhood, brotherhood, and manhood. Yes, indeed. So it’s directed by Luchina Fisher. And she’s also the director of Mama Gloria. And Mama Gloria is close to my heart.
Mama Gloria is from Chicago. She was a bright, freaking shining light. Okay? She was an elder, a legend, who… Wrapped her arms around the trans community here in Chicago, and that’s why we called her Mama Gloria, okay? And so Lucina directed that film. Now, The Dads actually follows five fathers of trans children.
They are joined by Dennis Shepard, who is Matthew Shepard’s dad, on a weekend trip to Fish and Rural, Oklahoma. Now, some of this is serendipitous. These fathers know each other from participating in the Parents for a Transgender Equality National Council. Now, this council is through the Human Rights Campaign.
So, they were familiar with each other. And they were invited to go on this fishing trip and to be filmed to share their stories. Now, some quotes for me that really stand out in the trailer. One dad says, The thread that connects us all is that we love our children. And we’re willing to put everything on the line for us.
Other people’s children as well. Ooh, right? Another dad says, we’re letting people know we’re here. We’re not going to shy away. We’re not going to be in the shadows, not going to be scared. We’re going to confront this head on because that’s all we can do. We have to make the way safe for our children.
Come on, dads. Come on, dads. Now, these five dads, they all come from different walks of life. And in June, Netflix actually acquired the film from Lucina Fisher. Alright, and when it premiered at South by Southwest, Dwayne Wade saw it and was like, I gotta be a part of it. He became an executive producer. If y’all know what that means in the film world, that means he threw some money at this too, okay?
And now, it’s premiered on Netflix. I invite you all to go check out this movie. I saw the trailer. Okay, and it’s on my list for this week.
The architect of 1963’s momentous March on Washington, Bayard Rustin was one of the greatest activists and organizers the world has ever known. He challenged authority, never apologized for who he was, what he believed, or who he desired. And he did not back down. He made history, and in turn, he was forgotten.
As reported by The Legacy Project, Bayard was an activist and strategist for the Civil Rights Movement. On the forefront of A. Philip Randolph’s efforts to end segregation in the Armed Forces, Bayard Rustin was instrumental in obtaining President Truman’s July 1948 order to integrate the U.S. military. In 1949 Rustin spent almost a month on a chain-gang in North Carolina as punishment for protesting segregated seating on buses. As a leading proponent of non-violence in the face of racial injustice, Rustin used his influence to strengthen Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s position in the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, eventually becoming one of King’s chief political advisors, strategists and speechwriters. Through much of Bayard’s career his openness about being gay was an issue. Despite widespread pressure from other civil rights activists to fire him, Randolph and King remained steadfast in their support – though the threat of scandal often forced periods of estrangement. Indeed Rustin and King parted ways for three years before Randolph orchestrated Rustin’s pivotal role as architect of the watershed March on Washington, where Dr. King delivered his seminal “I Have A Dream” speech. In August of 1963, conservative Senator (and unabashed segregationist) Strom Thurmond of South Carolina took to the floor of the U.S. Senate to discredit the March by accusing Rustin of being a Communist, a draft-dodger and a homosexual. But such declarations did not sway Rustin from the path he had chosen for his life, and could not diminish his impact on King or on the movement he had quietly, but profoundly, influenced for decades. Rustin mentored King to make Mohandas Gandhi’s philosophy of non-violent “Civil Disobedience” the strategic centerpiece of King’s activism and the hallmark of his legacy. Though Bayard Rustin is often forgotten by many contemporary activists, few people had a more powerful influence on the Civil Rights Movement and its enduring impact on the course of American History. Bayard Rustin, may your legacy only be amplified.
Y’all know I end every episode with a word. My word today is to remember to take care of each other. That’s it. As we are headed into the holiday season full steam ahead its easy to forget these are not the happiest of times for everyone. Lots of hearts break during this time of the year. My word today is to remember to be kind. Do an act of kindness; give someone a hug, pay for someone’s gas, pay for someone’s meal. I don’t know lets just take care of each other because we’re all we got. Till next week, peace.
Netflix Acquires Luchina Fisher’s Docu Short ‘The Dads’; Dwyane Wade Among The EPs On “Love Letter” From Fathers To Their LGBTQ+ Children