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Family, t’s your favorite queer radio personality, Anna DeShawn. And this is queer news, your favorite weekly news pod where race and sexuality meet politics, culture, and entertainment. And family, I want to let y’all know we got a winner. We got a winner. Hey, we got a winner. Hey, for the survey. Yes, indeed.

Liz is our winner. Boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom. Congratulations, Liz. Thank you so much. For being such a great supporter of the pod. It really means a lot to me. Your kind words mean so much to me and I hope to see you again at Outspoken. Okay, for sure. Now I do want to share a few data points with y’all that are standing out to me because 84 of y’all took the survey and I appreciate y’all.

And like I said, I’ve been digging into it. There’s more to dig into. There’s so much to read. You know what I mean? And I want to share a few other things that are standing out to me. In this moment, 1, 62 percent of y’all actually listened to the majority of these episodes. Thank you. 63 percent of y’all feel like the length is just right.

So we’re going to keep it here. I also realized y’all love the culture and entertainment news, which I think is amazing. I’ve got some things in the works in my mind to help buff that portion of just a little bit, because so many y’all said y’all want more of that. I’m also grateful that the vast majority of you would actually recommend this podcast to a friend.

And that means. So much because word of mouth is how we grow this pod, period. The vast majority of you told me that you’d like more interviews too. So I’m going to work on that because I do enjoy talking to folks and it seems like y’all like listening to them. 80 percent of you all told me that you’d like to listen to this podcast to stay informed and we will continue to do everything we can to make sure that remains the case.

Now, while going through, I read your written in responses as well. Those were so important to me. Some want less music. Some want me to hurry up and get to the stories. Others want more resources, more in depth coverage, more diverse voices. I appreciate all this feedback and your thoughts are going to directly inform decisions we make on this pod now and in the future.

Also, a few of you left questions for me. So I’m going to go through answer those at the top of the show till I get through them all. Okay. So thank you again, because I want this pod to be better. I want to have a top 10. Podcasts on the charts, you know, and I can’t do that without y’all. I just can’t. And also it’s just better to be on the journey with people.

I don’t want to be on the Island. I’m not interested in that life. And so thank you for being on this queer news journey with me. It really does mean the world. And so thank you. Thank you. Now is a great time to join the Q crew. Don’t you agree? Our queer news community, where you can receive a weekly email, sharing our top queer news stories and unedited video from me about those top queer news stories and about what’s going on in my life, what’s happening in the queer world in general, and first dibs on any exclusive interviews we land here on the pod.

The Q crew helps to supplement the costs. Editing, hosting, marketing, travel, PR, Chile, it all costs. I was telling somebody the other day, doing good also comes with receipts. You heard me. Doing good comes with receipts. So, 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 Q crew.

A link is in the show notes. Now for the news. We remember a Billy Jones Hennon, a lifelong LGBTQ advocate who made his transition just this past week. The ACLU is reporting that 300, 300, 300 anti LGBTQ bills have been introduced across 35 states this year. Family, we are 29 days in to the year. What? The man who murdered Taya Ashton last year was sentenced to 48 years in prison.

A scholarship has been named for O’Shea’s sibling. And let’s talk about this queer eye drama that’s going around and making its way around the interwebs. And also I’m loving this season for Coleman Domingo. We got more news about him. Um, let’s go for our top story today. Let us remember a Billy Jones Hennon.

Now I had never heard of him before. I saw the stories come across that he was a long time LGBTQ advocate who had transitioned at the age of 81. He passed alongside his husband of 45 years in their home in Mexico. Now, as I began to read about a Billy. I was like, wow, this man was amazing. And so on today, I want us to remember him, uplift his name out here in the world, and maybe you’ll want to go learn more about him, but in the meantime, let me tell y’all what I learned about him.

He co founded the National Coalition of Black Gays. Now this became the first national advocacy group for gay and lesbian African Americans. That’s really critical because the gay rights movement is known for being A white male movement and it was absolutely that in the seventies period. So co founding this organization was a really big deal.

Now, a year later in 1979, I learned that he served as logistics coordinator for the first ever national march on Washington for lesbian and gay rights. Now, this national march was huge. This march took place because Reagan was about to be president, LGBTQ hate, and of course the recent assassination of California politician and icon, Harvey Milk.

It’s reported that upwards of a hundred thousand LGBTQ folks showed up in 1979 to March. That’s amazing. A. Billy also participated in the first delegation of gay people of color to meet with representatives of the president of the United States during the Carter administration. While doing my research, I also found out that he identified as bisexual, and he talked openly about biphobia and his own hesitancy to identify as bi, and he did it anyway.

Victoria Kirby York, BKY is what we call her, the Public Policy and Programs Director for the National Black Justice Coalition. said this about Ability, that he didn’t just lament what was happening. He strategized, he organized, and he got people who didn’t otherwise want to be in the same room together, to be in the same room, knowing that was the only way we would reach liberation.

I love this quote, because it reminds us that we’re human. Even in this work for freedom and liberation and equity, everybody don’t get along, child. So you have to have people in the movement who can bring folks together. And that sounds like who he was. And so with that, a Billy, we remember you today. We speak your name today.

And I thank you for the work that you did that allows me the privilege to do the work that I do. Thank you. In politics today, I want to share this story that I read around 300 anti trans and anti LGBTQ bills being introduced already in 2024. Y’all, we are 29 days in. How was that even possible? Well, Let me break it down for you.

Okay. First off, half of these were introduced in a prior legislative session. Noted. And let me tell y’all this 119 brand new bills though, have been introduced 119. That is still more than any other year up until this point ever, like ever, this onslaught of hate from right wing Republicans is wild because it is so orchestrated.

It is so polarizing because most of them won’t pass.

LGBTQ orgs fighting this legislation, lobbyists fighting this legislation, parents and students across the country fighting this legislation, most of it won’t pass. But do y’all know that that doesn’t matter because the hate is being put out there anyway. The damage has been done to trans folks already.

It’s just not written in law, but it’s written in our minds. It’s written in our hearts that. There are legislators who can make laws in this country who don’t want to see us here, who want to see us erased. That damage is already done. And y’all know these bills range from restricting student and educator rights, to playing sports, to which bathroom should they use, to health care.

To date, Oklahoma is leading the way, introducing 40 anti LGBTQ and trans bills, followed by Missouri at 28, and South Carolina at 26. I know y’all hear me talk about this pretty much every episode of Queer News, but this is the issue of our time, and we have to make sure we’re doing everything we can to not only stay informed, but also support those who are actively in the fight.

Because if we really want to win, this is the work that must be done. For our next story, I want to tell y’all about Taya Ashton. Taya Ashton was a black trans woman who was murdered in 2021 in her own apartment. Soon after the police arrested Dee Allen Price of Maryland with her murder. They were in a relationship.

It’s reported that he found out she was trans and then he killed her. Just this past week, D. Allen Price was sentenced to 48 years in prison. He actually pleaded guilty to second degree murder and use of a firearm. According to HRC, 36 percent of trans and gender non conforming victims last year were killed by people they knew.

Including romantic or sexual partners, friends, family members, and the Washington Post reports, they found nearly half of trans women killed between 2015 and 2020 were killed by intimate partners. Now that report came out in 2021. Intimate partner violence is very real in the queer community and it shows up in a lot of different ways

and it is in these stories that we are all reminded that queer folks are not exempt. DV is real. Intimate partner violence is very real. And Taya Ashton was 20 years old. We remember her today and we speak her name. Now let’s take a quick break. While we hear from our sponsors and we’ll be back with the culture and entertainment news.

Did you lose your health insurance coverage? At GetCoveredIllinois. gov certified local navigators can help you find out if you qualify for a special enrollment period through the ACA marketplace. Find out more at GetCoveredIllinois. gov. Your health coverage starts here. All right, family, welcome back to the show.

Now let’s jump into some culture and entertainment news. First up, let’s talk about O’Shea’s sibling. Do y’all remember O’Shea? He was a 28 year old man who was murdered in a Brooklyn gas station for dancing and voguing to Beyonce. Do y’all remember this story? If not, maybe you remember this chant that I played on this very podcast.

Let’s play it.

That chant took place at a memorial celebrating O’Shea’s life. Well, now the dance company that Sibley attended as a teenager, the Philadelphia Dance Company, they have created a scholarship in O’Shea’s honor. It’s called the O’Shea Scholarship. Scholarship program, and it’s going to support teenage boys between the ages of 12 and 18 who wish to dance.

It’s going to cover tuition, transportation, and dance wear. The scholarship was initially funded through a GoFundMe campaign. The GoFundMe raised nearly 22, 000. Joan Myers Brown, founder of the Philadelphia Dance Company said this, we will take care of these boys as long as they’re interested in dance training.

This stigma that comes with being a man. No dancer has not changed. We don’t stigmatize them or point them out. We just let them be themselves. This is beautiful. If you want to support the Philadelphia Dance Company, visit their website and they have a support link. Go to donate and make a donation today.

Okay. I think what they’re doing is really important and I love that they’ve named a scholarship after O’Shea Sibley and remembering him always because there are so many more O’Sheas out there who just need a little help.

And since this is culture and entertainment news, and we’re going to lean on the entertainment in the moment, my TikTok timeline was full of this queer eye drama, and then I get online to prepare for this podcast, and of course it’s hit the blogs as well, right? I’m a big fan of Queer Eye. Do y’all watch Queer Eye?

I watch Queer Eye. I enjoy them. Okay. I love that. They look like they like each other. And I don’t want to know that they don’t like each other as a matter of fact, but also on my TikTok timeline came videos about how some of them don’t like each other. I’m like, don’t ruin it. Let me just say this for me.

TV is entertainment. Okay. Some of these people, I never want to meet in real life ever. Do you understand? They will ruin it for me. I like this show for what the show is, and I want them to be this fab five who all have different skills and who come together and transform someone’s life. Period. The end. I like happy endings.

That’s what I want. But no, no, no, no, Bobby will not be returning to Queer Eye and then spills the tea as to why. Now I missed this whole drama because I tried to avoid the drama because I like to keep this image in my head of what I want them to be. Okay. Well, it turns out that Bobby and Tan have had a rift.

Who knows if the rift is over. Okay. But essentially Bobby was mad at Tan for some reason, unfollowed Tan on social media, stopped tagging Tan in all the pictures. And of course the people noticed, of course the people noticed. Now, let me tell y’all what Bobby had to say because Bobby. Has been talking.

Okay. And Bobby said, Tan and I had a moment. There was a situation and that’s between Tan and I. And it has nothing to do with the show. It was something personal that had been brewing. And nothing romantic, just to clarify that. Bobby went on to say, Should I have unfollowed Tan? No. Maybe I should have just muted him.

But that day, I was angry. And that’s the end of it. We became like siblings and siblings are always going to fight. Now that’s true. That’s true. Okay. Now he also went on to clarify why he left the show. And he said it was because he had taken other projects outside of the show before the series was renewed.

Now this series, Queer Eye, has been going on since 2018. They’re, they’re going into season eight. You know, and so it’s been going on for a long time. It’s a hit. Karamo has his own show, right? Jonathan’s podcast is blowing up always. And so I’d imagine all of them have other projects going on. I just think Bobby was over it.

Sometimes things come to an end, right? Absolutely. I’m sure they’ll find someone else to fill Bobby’s shoes and it’s going to be weird at first, but I’m open to it. I’m staying open.

And for our last story today, can I just share how I am in love with this season for Coleman Domingo? I am here for all of it. Okay. Just nominated for his first Rustin in Rustin. Now the news. Okay, that he is set to play Nat King Cole and he’s also set to play Joe Jackson, Michael Jackson’s father in another film.

This is his season, and I am here for it. Okay? He just is on the cover of Out Magazine, which y’all need to go pick up and or read a digital copy. The story was written by our friend and journalist, Trevelle Anderson. Trevelle has interviewed some of your friends. Favorite stars. And they were just nominated for NAACP image award too.

Okay. For their book, historically black phrases. Yes, they did. I’m loving Travail season two, but let me tell y’all Coleman is doing this thing. He’s not even just starring in the Nat King Cole story. He’s actually co writing it. And also it’s going to be his directorial debut. I’m here for it all. And one thing that stood out to me about the Out Magazine article and what Travelle posted was that Colman Domingo is our first out black gay movie star, a movie star.

And that is exactly what Colman is. Child, have you seen him walk across a red carpet in a white suit? If he is not giving movie star, no one is, okay? Coleman, I’m here for it. I cannot wait to see all the amazing things that you do. Cause I’m a fan. Are you a fan? I’m a fan. I’m a fan. Family, y’all know how we end the pod.

We always end with a word because Anna’s always got a word. And I want to share a quote that came up on my IG timeline this week by journalist Natasha Alford. Now, maybe you know her from the griot. She’s also a political analyst on CNN. So she did an interview with her agenda. It’s a digital media platform for ambitious women.

And she was quoted by saying this, And you see so clearly how you want to contribute to the world. There’s nothing that can stop you. This quote really stopped me in my tracks because I do feel like I’m called to the work that I’m doing. This work on Queer News, this work to build The Qube, a platform amplifying BIPOC and QTPOC voices, my work with E3 Radio, playing queer music all day long, this podcast.

But I find myself getting in my own way all the time. So when she says there’s nothing that can stop you, I’m telling you, I have stopped myself. Fear has stopped me and it’s not fear that I’m going to fail. Failure is inevitable. It’s something I have really learned to embrace because I’m better when things don’t go as planned, but fear that it might actually happen.

The fear around success at a whole nother level. I don’t know if that sounds strange to anybody. But that has definitely stopped me. And it is only in these moments where I get affirmations like these and reminders that I ought to get out of my own way. And so that’s my word for y’all today. Okay. Get out your own way.

That’s all I got. Just get out your own way. And believe me, I’m talking to myself today. Till next week. Peace. If you’ve enjoyed what you heard, rate and review us inside your favorite podcasting app. This podcast is written and produced by me, Anna Deshaun. Podcast editing by Ryan Woodhull and brought to you by E3 radio and distributed on the Qube.

We are Queer News Done Right.

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