[00:00:00] There’s no place like the Qube.

[00:00:26] Family, it’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. As promised, I want to answer the questions you left for me in the survey. You all took the time and I want to take the time too.

[00:00:48] Now, this week’s question. Where’s the hotline? I have a queer news story to share. Yo, thank you so much for this question. It’s funny, the [00:01:00] hotline has been a couple of places. But I’m going to do a better job of centralizing it. So I started it on Tik Tok, so I would post on Tik Tok, like, share your queer news stories with me.

[00:01:11] And I have admittedly not been great at keeping up with that. So I actually just created an audio voicemail line with Speakpipe. It’s really great. I put a link in the show notes, you click that link, you can hear me give you a prompt, and then you can reply. You can reply from your phone and you leave me an audio voicemail message with the details about your story.

[00:01:37] This is so important to me because there are so many stories that never make it to the light of day. Don’t make it to a blog. Don’t make it to television news, but they’re important. And There’s so much queer joy happening around the country that I never get to see. So you all giving me stories that are happening in your communities means so much and I want to tell them.

[00:01:59] So [00:02:00] yes, a link is in the show notes and I’ll do a better job of posting it on TikTok too.

[00:02:11] Now it’s that time to talk about the Q Crew. Thank y’all so much for supporting the work of this podcast. Our queer news community receives a weekly email from me sharing our top queer news stories, an unedited video about those stories, and also what’s just going on in my life. And now, first dibs on our exclusive interviews, which we have coming up.

[00:02:31] Some really good ones too. Family, the Q Crew helps to supplement the cost of this pod. From hosting, to editing, to marketing, to PR, to travel. All the things. 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.

[00:02:52] A link is in the show notes.

[00:02:56] Now for the news. Family, how [00:03:00] about some global news? Greece has legalized same sex marriage, and Nepal has recognized its first lesbian marriage. In politics, a Tennessee pride organization wins 500, 000 in an anti LGBTQ discrimination case, and Utah’s governor I can’t even believe I’m saying this, but Utah’s governor calls for Natalie Klein to resign after her anti trans Facebook post.

[00:03:29] In culture and entertainment, let’s talk about Cecilia Gentile’s epic home going service in New York City, Brittany Greiner going back to Baylor to have her jersey retired, and a collection of queer comedians are coming together in an upcoming Netflix special. Let’s go! Our top stories for today are actually in global news.

[00:03:53] Let’s start with Greece. Greece has become the first Christian Orthodox majority country to [00:04:00] actually legalize same sex marriage. And it wasn’t even a close vote. Y’all same sex marriage won 176 to 76. That’s right. That’s right. I mean, it wasn’t even close. This vote has taken decades to become a reality.

[00:04:20] I mean, 15 of the 27 members of the European Union have already legalized same sex marriage, so Greece is sort of just joining the party. And Stella, she leads a same sex parents group in Greece called Rainbow Families. She told Reuters news agency, This is a historic moment. This is a day of joy. And it wasn’t just the LGBTQ organizations in Greece who were fighting for this legislation.

[00:04:49] They also had the support of their prime minister, Mr. Takis. He said this law would boldly abolish a serious [00:05:00] inequality. Yeah, he said that. He also went on to say the reform makes the lives of several of our fellow citizens better without taking away anything from the lives of the many. I mean, this is the whole point, right?

[00:05:19] Giving rights to LGBTQ folks doesn’t harm anyone else. It only enhances the lives of the citizens who have been most marginalized. It seems to make so much sense to me. And of course this legislation was met with opposition. There were absolutely protesters outside with their crosses, with their Bibles, protesting, and yet and still here we are with a victory in Greece.

[00:05:49] And much to my surprise, this wasn’t the only good news coming from our global siblings. Yes, indeed. In Nepal, we have our first lesbian [00:06:00] couple being recognized. Now, this is a big deal. Let me tell you why. While doing my research, I learned back in 97, a queer couple got married, had a traditional Hindu ceremony, but the government didn’t recognize their marriage as being legal.

[00:06:16] It actually wasn’t until last year, literally decades after their wedding, that the government decided to officially recognize them. So for this lesbian couple, their names are Anju and Supreeta. To have the courage to actually submit their marriage license to the government, that took a lot. And then for them to recognize it, what a tremendous victory.

[00:06:45] An LGBT activist group in Nepal said this. The Nepalese LGBT communities have launched a campaign for identity based rights of the sexual minority communities since 2001. And the campaign has [00:07:00] become successful in getting officially registered same sex marriage. After more than two decades of struggle.

[00:07:08] Now the name of this group actually translates into recognition of love. Y’all I love this. I love this good news and I hope I get to report on this type of thing.

[00:07:25] Today in political news, I want to tell you all about a story coming out of Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Yeah, I don’t know where Murfreesboro, Tennessee is either, but this is some good news that I just had to share. In Murfreesboro, there’s an organization called the Tennessee Equality Project. T. E. P. And they actually organized Murphy Burroughs annual Burroughs Pride Festival.

[00:07:50] Now, they encountered anti LGBTQ hate from the city manager, whose name is Craig Tindall. Now, he [00:08:00] told them he was never going to issue them another permit for T. E. P. events. And we already know he’s doing this because he doesn’t believe LGBTQ folks should have rights. But little did he know that TEP was going to file a lawsuit and get backed by the ACLU, the ACLU of Tennessee, and law firms Ballard’s Fire and Burr and Furman.

[00:08:20] Yes. So they had the support they needed to file this suit. And guess what happened next? They won. That’s right. They won a 500, 000 settlement to cover damages and attorney’s fees. And that wasn’t the end of it. The city also agreed that, that Craig guy was not to process any other permit applications going forward.

[00:08:48] He was actually barred from it. Okay? The attorneys for TEP, they said. More important than the monetary recovery, this settlement sends a clear [00:09:00] message that the city’s discrimination against the LGBTQ plus community was blatantly unconstitutional, and that this type of behavior will no longer be tolerated here or anywhere across the country.

[00:09:13] Y’all, I do think that this helps to set a precedent. Given all LGBTQ legislation that’s been submitted this year so far, Which I reported a few weeks ago has been over 300 deals. This gives some legal precedence that it is actually unconstitutional to discriminate against LGBTQ folks. And now the executive director of TEP, Chris Sanders, says they can begin going back to putting their attention on the 2024 Borough Pride Festival, which I have no doubt will be the biggest and best one yet.

[00:09:51] Go TEP! Now, for more political news, let’s go west to Utah and much to my [00:10:00] welcome surprise, this is more good political news. Okay. Now, a couple of weeks ago, you may have heard a story about a school board member who went to their Facebook page, posted a picture of two girls and suggested one of them was trans.

[00:10:16] Did you hear about that? Well, the person that posted that. Her name is Natalie Clean, and she’s known for being anti trans and anti LGBTQ. She’s a conservative member of the School Board of Education. And what she realizes now is not only was that girl not trans, but that what she did was incredibly irresponsible.

[00:10:40] Because that post led to that girl on that basketball team being harassed. cyberbullied and harmed. The student athlete’s parents actually did an interview and they said, here’s a person that is supposed to be in a position of leadership that [00:11:00] advocates for our children’s safety, well being, their privacy, and she’s the one who has instigated this post that has led to all this hate.

[00:11:10] Yeah, that’s exactly what she did. Now, did she apologize? It kind of depends on what you consider an apology. She wrote a Facebook post acknowledging that she created a firestorm, right? And that the teenager did receive derogatory comments. But then she went about defending her intent saying that the girl quote, does have a larger build like her parents.

[00:11:36] What? But it gets better. She went to say, we live in strange times when it is normal to pause and wonder if people are what they say they are because of the push to normalize transgenderism, is that a word? Transgenderism in our society. She went on to say, but. That is definitely not the case with this student, and I apologize again that the conversation around the post turned [00:12:00] personal.

[00:12:00] That was never the intention, and again, I removed the post as soon as I realized what had transpired. Family, she shouldn’t have wrote the post in the first place. How you write a post and not do research? You are intentionally trying to cause harm and controversy, and now it came to backfire. And let me tell y’all how that went down.

[00:12:22] On Wednesday, Utah’s Board of Education Voted to censor Klein, but not just censor her. Y’all. She’s been stripped of all her committee assignments. She’s been prohibited from attending the board’s advisory committee meetings and forbidden from placing items on the board’s agenda. So basically she can’t do nothing.

[00:12:44] They have also asked her to resign. She has until February 19th to make a decision, but even if she doesn’t resign, she really can’t do anything. And it didn’t get better for Klein. Even the governor and Lieutenant [00:13:00] governor of Utah spoke out against her saying she embarrassed the state of Utah and the state board of education.

[00:13:08] We were stunned to learn of this unconscionable behavior of board. and others towards a high school student. The last thing our children need is an elected official harassing them on social media. Now, the irony here is that Utah, this governor and lieutenant governor have signed off on anti trans legislation over the last two years.

[00:13:31] So it’s not that they are pro LGBTQ or pro trans. It’s just this situation blew up and they had no other choice. But you know, all of that is fine and dandy, but the more I learned about this story and the more I sat with it, the worse I felt for that high school student whose face was blasted all over Facebook and whose life has been upended because of the irresponsibility [00:14:00] of this school board member because now her life is forever changed for absolutely no reason at all.

[00:14:09] Let’s take a quick break, family, and when we get back. We’ll have culture and entertainment news.

[00:14:18] If you’re hearing this, it means we didn’t sell this ad space. If you’re hearing this, it means running ads on our podcast actually can work. You see what I did there? You see this real life example. You got an event. Do you have an organization? Do you got something you need to get the word out about? We got rates starting as low as 100.

[00:14:38] Check the link in our show notes for more information. We got such a glove, a hold on our hearts from this young woman. We’re not going to think of Cecilia as gone. We’re going to think of her in another realm, in a place where everything is beautiful and shiny, where we could say, Cecilia, [00:15:00] we love you.

[00:15:01] Repeat after me again. Cecilia! Cecilia! Cecilia! Cecilia! Now give Cecilia a standing ovation.

[00:15:23] Now the voice you just heard was Kyanne Doroshow. She’s an icon. And the LGBTQ community who has been advocating for trans rights for decades. She was the mistress of ceremonies for Cecilia’s home going services that was held at St. Patrick’s cathedral. Now, if this name and this cathedral sounds familiar, it’s because it’s home to the historic site of the infamous act up.

[00:15:48] Stop the church 1989 protest where 111 protesters were arrested and 53 were handcuffed inside that church. [00:16:00] I’m sure you all have seen the images, right? They were fighting against Cardinal John O’Connor at the time because he was outspoken about being opposed to teaching safe sex in the public school system and opposed to distributing condoms.

[00:16:14] To curb the spread of AIDS. Now at the time, a lot of people did not agree with ACT UP and they did not agree with this action, but we already know power concedes nothing. And sometimes disruption is exactly what must be done. Well, on Thursday, February 15th, over 1, 400 people gathered in this church to say goodbye to a mother, an activist, a sex worker, an immigrant rights advocate, a woman of trans experience.

[00:16:48] It’s an icon, Cecilia Gentile. The service opened up with a word and song by Billy Porter, followed by many traditional Catholic [00:17:00] songs and rituals. Gentile’s partner, Peter, spoke and shared his love and heartbreak with everyone. He said, seeing all the people at the funeral services and all the love he’s received from people in her community all over the world.

[00:17:16] is a testament of how awesome Cecilia was. He went on to say, I’m so grateful for them all. She was an angel, an icon, a mother, an educator, a leader, and so much to so many people. She’d always be there and answer that call. But to me, she was my partner. We woke up every day next to each other with so much laughter and love.

[00:17:41] I’m gonna take that with me forever. Of course, some celebrities were in attendance as well. Sadra Ramirez, India Moore, Peppermint, Raquel Willis, and Ryan McGinley. I watched some of the service, and I sat there in tears as they chanted her name in [00:18:00] this historic Catholic cathedral that is known for not being LGBTQ friendly, and we showed up.

[00:18:09] We showed up as ourselves. We showed up to support each other in grief, and we remember Cecilia today, and we chant her name. Cecilia. Cecilia. Cecilia.

[00:18:24] Now for some sports news, by the time this episode is released, Brittany Griner’s jersey will be hanging in the rafters of Baylor University. This is such a moment because BG was instrumental in building this program. But due to her contentious relationship with Kim Mulkey, she stayed away. But now, she’s been welcomed back.

[00:18:45] Here, a bit of her journey, from landing in Waco, Texas on a private jet, to talking with some of the Baylor Bear faithful. I’m home! Let’s do it![00:19:00]

[00:19:02] I want to say this, that I know there were a lot of years that, you know, I was not around, but I never forgot any of y’all. Never once did I forget anybody that was here, supported me, helped me, gave me advice, showed up to the games, um, it was, this was really a home. This was my home. And I love the fact that I am here right now.

[00:19:27] And I love the fact that y’all are here right now with me at this moment. Um, I wish I could just go back in time. And, uh, and be able to be back here again, um, but I will promise you this, you will see me more and I will be on campus more and I will be at games more and I will be here. Thank y’all.

[00:19:55] Family. I am so happy that she is getting this moment. We all [00:20:00] know what BG has been through. And we also know what she went through at Baylor with Kim Mulkey. So this moment is so long overdue. I’m here for this whole winning season for BG, okay? Yes, indeed. Now, for our last culture and entertainment story for today, do I got any comedy lovers out there?

[00:20:19] People that just love comedy and want to laugh? Well, our contentious platform friend known as Netflix is actually fulfilling one of the demands that the Netflix Trans Employee Resource Group presented back to the company in 2021. Now, we all should remember these demands were raised after that Dave Chappelle special was dropped and that mess that happened.

[00:20:43] Well, one of the demands was increased funding for trans affirming content. Well, here we are in 2024, and we’ve got a Hannah Gadsby comedy special titled, Gender Agenda. Not the Gay Agenda. Not the Queer [00:21:00] Agenda. The Gender Agenda. Featuring seven of your favorite genderqueer comedians. Okay, we got Jess Thom.

[00:21:08] We got Alok. Asha Ward. Chloe Petz. DeAnne Smith. Smith, Krishna, and Dalio. Now this trailer, I watched it, y’all. It’s absolutely hilarious. So I included a link in the show notes for you to enjoy it too, okay? They are talking about all the things, gender, sexuality, even anxiety, all right? So it drops March 5th.

[00:21:31] So get ready to make this comedy special number one on Netflix.

[00:21:44] Now family, you know, it’s time for Anna’s got a word because I’ve always got a word and today’s word It’s gonna come from the mother herself. Audrey Lord. Audrey would have been 90 years old on Sunday, February 18th [00:22:00] Audrey Lord’s word Expressed how I felt before I had the words to describe it myself.

[00:22:06] Does that make sense? her book sister outsider Was a life changing read for me. And so today, I want to leave you with a couple of quotes from Audrey, because we all need some Audre Lorde in our life. She said, it is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognize, accept, and celebrate those differences.

[00:22:32] And the next one, this one is so powerful. My silences had not protected me. Your silence. Will not protect you, but for every real word spoken, for every attempt I had ever made to speak those truths for which I am still seeking. I had made contact with other women while we examined the words to fit in a world in which we all believed [00:23:00] bridging our differences.

[00:23:03] Y’all take Audrey with y’all this week, okay? Keep her close because our silence will not protect us till next week. Family. Peace.[00:23:35] 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 Deshawn. Podcast editing by Ryan Woodhull and brought to you by E3 radio and distributed on the Qube. We are Queer News Done Right.[00:24:00]

Transcript – Greece has legalized same-sex marriage, thousands pay their respects to Cecilia Gentili in New York City, and Baylor finally retires Brittney Griner’s jersey – February 19, 2024

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