A gay staffer has been appointed to a powerful role by president-elect Joe Biden.
The incoming leader, who this week received the official go-ahead for his transition to power, has been hard at work setting up the team of top officials who will fill his White House.
As he makes a number of cabinet posts and high-profile appointments, Biden has tapped a prominent gay staffer for an important role.
Gay staffer Carlos Elizondo tapped for top White House role
Carlos Elizondo has been named the social secretary for the incoming White House, after previously filling a similar role for Biden for all eight years of his vice presidency under Barack Obama.
The role places him in charge of planning, coordination and execution of official social events at the White House.
Biden said in a statement dated Friday (20 November): “I’m proud to name additional members of our team who will help deliver the change America needs in these difficult times. Their dedication to overcoming the challenges facing our country today are rooted in their diverse backgrounds and experiences. They will serve the American people and help build back better, creating a more just, equitable, and united nation.”
Incoming White House chief of staff Ron Klain added: “To bring president-elect Biden and vice president-elect Harris’ agenda to life you must have a boundless team of experts ready for day one.
“Today’s appointees are respected leaders who will bring a commitment to serving the American people each and every day. They will support our work to build an administration and White House that represents America and delivers results.”
Elizondo, who has previously worked in events at Georgetown University and Walt Disney World, currently lives with his partner in Washington DC.
Joe Biden administration could have a number of high-ranking LGBT+ staffers
The staffer is likely to be far from the only out figure in a senior White House role. Karine Jean-Pierre, currently chief of staff to vice president-elect Kamala Harris, could become the first out lesbian and first Black woman to be named White House press secretary.
Dr Rachel Levine, Pennsylvania’s secretary of health and one of the most senior trans officials in the US, has also been touted as an outside chance at a healthcare role.
Germany’s government has approved legislation that will offer €3,000 in compensation for gay military personnel who have experienced discrimination.
Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, Germany’s defence minister, said: “I know that we can’t make up for the personal injustice they suffered but, with the lifting of verdicts and the payment of lump-sum compensation, we want to send a signal of redress.”
The new legislation aims to “restore the dignity of these people who wanted nothing other than to serve Germany”, according to Kramp-Karrenbauer.
The legislation still requires paliamentary approval, but Kramp-Karrenbauer is optimistic about getting the support of lawmakers. She hopes to “rehabilitate and compensate those affected next year”.
The ministry previously commissioned a study and found “systemic discrimination” in the military from 1955 to 2000. This included both West Germany’s military, the Bundeswehr, and the military of reunited Germany from 1990.
The study found that homosexuality was “viewed as a security risk in the Bundeswehr until the turn of the millennium and made a career as an officer or non-commissioned officer impossible”.
The new legislation will also cover victims of discrimination in East Germany’s National People’s Army. Kramp-Karrenbauer said this was “an important signal” because 2020 marks 30 years since the reunification of Germany.
The government will offer €3,000 in compensation to personnel who received military court verdicts for consensual gay sex. Soldiers who were dismissed, denied for promotions or put under investigation will also be eligible for compensation.
In September, Kramp-Karrenbauer apologised to those who suffered discrimination.
The defence minister said: “I very much regret the practice of discrimination against homosexuals in the Bundeswehr, which stood for the policy of that time. I apologize to those who suffered because of it.”
This comes after the UK Ministry of Defence apologised for similar policies in January. However, the UK has not yet introduced an official compensation scheme for those dismissed from the military on grounds of their sexual orientation.
More than 150 people have sought compensation in the UK, though its thought the true number affected is likely to run into the thousands.
Rudolf Scharping, previously Germany’s defence minister, ended official discrimination in 2000 after an officer took a legal case to Germany’s highest court having been removed from his position. Scharping stated: “Homosexuality does not constitute grounds for restrictions in terms of assignment or status.”
A constitutional amendment before the Hungarian Parliament would effectively ban LGBTQ people from adopting, drawing the ire of human rights activists.
Draft language submitted to parliament this month by Justice Minister Judit Varga states that children must be raised “in accordance with the values based on our homeland’s constitutional identity and Christian culture.”
“The basis for family relations is marriage,” it reads in part. “The mother is a woman, the father is a man.”
Under the amendment, only opposite-sex married couples would be eligible to adopt children, with exceptions made on a case-by-case basis by Minister of Family Affairs Katalin Novák. The bill effectively bans gay couples, single people and unmarried straight couples from adopting.
It also asserts that the government “protects children’s right to the gender identity they were born with.”
LGBTQ advocates view the proposals, which are expected to pass next month, as yet another assault by Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s right-wing party, Fidesz, which has been in power since 2010 and maintains a two-thirds majority in Parliament.
A new constitution enacted in 2012 defines marriage exclusively as the union of a man and a woman and asserts that the traditional family is “the basis of the survival of the nation.”
Gay people “can do what they want, but they cannot get their marriages recognized by the state,” Orbán said in 2016 interview. “An apple cannot ask to be called a pear.”
In 2019, the speaker of the Hungarian National Assembly, László Kövér, compared same-sex couples wanting to adopt or marry to pedophiles. “Morally, there is no difference,” said Kövér, a founding member of Fidesz and a close ally of Orbán.
Senior party officials even called for a boycott of Coca-Cola when it launched an LGBTQ-inclusive ad campaign that summer. In May, the government reversed regulations allowing transgender and intersex citizens to change the gender listed on legal documents. The new regulations redefined the word “nem” — which in Hungarian can mean either “sex” or “gender” — to refer specifically to a person’s biological sex at birth “based on primary sex characteristics and chromosomes.”
The law puts trans and intersex people “at risk of harassment, discrimination, and even violence in daily situations when they need to use identity documents,” according to Human Rights Watch.
Another new proposal would abolish the Equal Treatment Authority, an autonomous agency tasked with investigating discrimination based on sexual orientation, ethnicity, religion and other factors.
Some responsibilities would be taken over by the commissioner for fundamental rights, Ákos Kozma, an Orbán loyalist who’s been largely silent on LGBTQ issues. ILGA-Europe, a leading European rights group, said the sole purpose of transferring control to Kozma is to “reduce the efficacy” of anti-discrimination policies.
These measures come as Hungary, like the rest of the world, is battling a deadly pandemic. Tamás Dombos, a board member for the Hatter Society, Hungary’s oldest and largest gay rights group, said the timing is strategic.
“Now the debate focuses on this issue rather than how bad the government is handling the pandemic or the changes they want to make to the electoral process,” Dombos told NBC News. “They create this noise so the opposition can’t focus on one issue.”
The ban on legal recognition of transgender people was passed just as the pandemic’s first wave hit Hungary. To date, the country of 9.8 million has reported 157,000 cases of Covid-19 and 3,380 deaths.
“The government has used the Covid-19 pandemic as a pretext to grab unlimited power and is using Parliament to rubber-stamp problematic nonpublic-health-related bills,” Human Rights Watch said in a statement Thursday.
The new amendments were presented on Nov. 10, the same day Parliament voted to extend a coronavirus-related state of emergency that Orbán had declared a week earlier.
Not only do they further stigmatize transgender people and same-sex couples raising children, Dombos said, they also make outreach to LGBTQ youth nearly impossible.
But the attacks on the LGBTQ community aren’t limited to the corridors of the Hungarian Parliament. “A Fairy Tale for Everyone,” a Hungarian children’s book with well-known tales incorporating gay people and other marginalized groups, was met with a barrage of homophobic vitriol when it was published in September. A leading Fidesz politician tore apart a copy page by page at a news conference, and a petition demanding it be removed from stores garnered more than 85,000 signatures.
“Hungarians are patient and tolerant” of homosexuality, he said. “We also tolerate provocation well, but there is a red line that cannot be crossed.”
The book’s authors, Dorottya Redai and Boldizsár Nagy, said they were disturbed by Orbán’s rhetoric. “When a prime minister says something like this … others will think they can also,” they told Time magazine.
Dombos said while he hasn’t seen physical violence, people on the street are getting more vocal. “Now you get called names. They shout, ‘Hey f—-t!’ That never happened before,” he said. “They feel encouraged now.”
Last month, Redai told Time that a large poster declaring, “Homosexual propaganda publication, which is dangerous for children, is sold here,” was draped outside a bookstore selling “A Fairy Tale for Everyone.”
Even a cosmopolitan city like Budapest, one of the first in Eastern Europe to hold a Pride march, hasn’t been immune. In August, a rainbow flag displayed outside City Hall was ripped down and thrown in the garbage.
Előd Novák, party leader of the extremist group Mi Hazánk, took credit for the vandalism, declaring that the “anti-family symbol has no place on the street.”
Budapest Mayor Gergely Karácsony had been the first to fly the symbol of the LGBTQ community on city property.
Days earlier, nationalist football fans calling themselves Aryan Greens reportedly set fire to a Pride flag outside another municipal building and replaced it with a banner for their favorite team.
The increasing homophobia has had a chilling effect on Hungary’s LGBTQ community.
“The general strategy for people is to stay in the closet,” Dombos said. “More than half aren’t out to their family, and only about 20 percent are out at work.” It has also pushed some to leave the country.
“The reasons why people emigrate are complex, but many LGBTQ people say dealing with discrimination and homophobic language day after day was an important factor,” Dombos said. “It’s quite easy to leave within the E.U. — you can go to Germany or other European countries where the jobs are better and there’s more acceptance.”
For those who stay and fight, countering a party with two-thirds majority is difficult under normal circumstances. During the pandemic, activists can’t have demonstrations, meet with politicians or even even hold in-person gatherings.
“We try to gather online, but it’s just not the same,” Dombos said.
Just days after Hungary announced the latest proposed amendments, the European Union’s executive commission announced its first formal strategy to protect the rights of LGBTQ citizens.
“We will defend the rights of LGBT people against those who have more and more appetite to attack them from an ideological point of view,” E.U. Commission Vice President Vera Jourova said Nov. 13 at a news conference. “This belongs to the authoritarian playbook, and it does not have a place in the E.U.”
The strategy proposes adding anti-gay hate crimes to the list of offenses for which the E.U. could set minimum penalties, including terrorism, drug trafficking and money laundering. It would also protect the legal status of same-sex married couples in all member states and tie funding to compliance with E.U. anti-discrimination laws.
Varga, the justice minister, condemned the strategy on Twitter, saying Hungary would “not accept any financial threats for protecting the traditional role of family and marriage.”
In any event, the guidelines aren’t binding on member countries. When dozens of Polish cities declared themselves “LGBT-free zones,”the commission could only deny small amounts of funding to a half-dozen towns.
Orbán has forged ideological ties with Poland in rejecting what he sees as an E.U. agenda. At a World War I memorial ceremony in August, Orbán called on central Europe to unite around its Christian roots.
“Western Europe has given up on a Christian Europe,” he warned, “and instead experiments with a godless cosmos, rainbow families, migration and open societies.”
So far, Hungary’s response to European Union pressure over human rights has been to veto E.U. legislation. Last week, Hungary and Poland united to veto the E.U.’s trillion-euro budget and coronavirus recovery package, because access is linked to countries’ adherence to the rule of law and European values.
Orbán previously vetoed ratification of an E.U. treaty on violence against women and an agreement to prevent discrimination against LGBTQ people.
The prime minister, according to Dombos, enjoys the political theatrics and “likes the idea that he’s shaping the E.U.”
Fidesz actually began as a progressive, youth-oriented party in the late 1980s, Dombos added, but then the political landscape changed and the party filled the vacuum in the right-wing space.
“More and more they became extreme, with statements not just about LGBT people, but about homeless people, Roma, Jews, migrants and asylum-seekers,” Dombos said. “Their strategy is to come up with an enemy, create a campaign around it and pass a law, and then tell us how they’ve rescued us from disaster.”
Mauree Turner made history this month by becoming the country’s first openly nonbinary state legislator. Turner, 27, was elected to represent District 88 in the Oklahoma House of Representatives on Nov. 3 with more than 70 percent of the vote and assumed office last week. Turner is also thought to be the first Muslim lawmaker to serve in the Oklahoma Legislature.
Turner, who uses both they/them and she/her pronouns, grew up in Ardmore, a city of 25,000 people that sits smack in between Oklahoma City to the north and Dallas to the south. Turner said their childhood was relatively idealistic: They had a supportive and involved mother and grew up singing in the choir and participating in their school band. They attended college at Oklahoma State University and then spent time organizing for various civil rights projects in Oklahoma, including an American Civil Liberties Union criminal justice reform campaign.
“While I never wanted to be in politics in this aspect, community organizing is always about answering a call to action, and that’s what my community was doing,” Turner said.
“I’m still reading so many messages from folks around the world that are just happy to have some sort of representation,” said Turner, whose district represents central Oklahoma City. “We’ve been able to create a space where folks can not only see themselves but also feel a little more empowered to show up, either fully as themselves or even just a little more fuller.”
Former Houston Mayor Annise Parker, CEO of the LGBTQ Victory Fund, a national organization that trains and advocates for LGBTQ political candidates, called Turner a “trailblazer,” saying, “Their courage to run openly will inspire more nonbinary people to pursue careers in elected office.”
“Of all the states to achieve a milestone political moment for nonbinary people, few would have thought it would be Oklahoma, where there are so few LGBTQ elected officials,” Parker said in a statement. “But Mauree ran a tireless campaign focused on the issues that matter to their district while also being authentic and open about who they are.”
As for the issues that matter to Turner, their campaign platform focused on criminal justice reform and more access to health care and public education.
“It was devastating for a lot of reasons for me on a personal level, and I think for Oklahoma’s growth as a whole,” Turner said. “Honestly, I don’t blame the people in how the vote ended up. What I blame is institutions that benefit from keeping Oklahomans incarcerated.
“Right now in Oklahoma, we’ve got mothers sitting in prison for 30-plus years because they wrote bad checks to be able to provide food for their families,” Turner said.
Another more local issue Turner is focused on in District 88 — one of the most liberal districts in deep red Oklahoma — is power lines. An ice storm last month left many in their district without power for weeks. Turner noted that power lines are underground in many more affluent districts but not in District 88, which Turner said is unacceptable. Turner wants to get those power lines underground in the next 10 to 15 years.
Turner said they think part of their campaign’s appeal was their belief in “people- and community-based solutions.” Now that they’re in office, Turner is starting to lay the groundwork for what they hope will be a long and successful political career.
“Politics is a place where you figure out not necessarily what you can and can’t do but what is within your bandwidth in the immediate [future] and what is in your bandwidth to do in the long run,” they said. “You have to continuously figure out what helps you continuously show up to this work in the best version of you, so that you have that longevity of being able to do this work.”
California’s average daily number of coronavirus cases has tripled in the last month, a Times analysis has found, as pandemic conditions deteriorated dramatically around the state.
The coronavirus is now infecting more Californians daily than at any previous point in the COVID-19 pandemic, raising concerns about a new peak in coronavirus-related deaths by Christmas.
As of Saturday night, California was averaging more than 11,500 new coronavirus cases a day over the last seven days, more than triple the number a month earlier, on Oct. 21, which was nearly 3,200, according to a Times analysis.
Even during the summertime surge, which led to the season with California’s worst COVID-19 death toll, the average daily number of coronavirus cases over a seven-day period never exceeded 10,000.
COVID-19 hospitalizations have doubled in the last month, the analysis found. And COVID-19 deaths have suddenly begun to climb in recent days. In the last week, an average of 65 Californian deaths have been reported daily, a more than 50% increase from two weeks ago, when 43 fatalities were reported daily on average.
The rate at which Californians are testing positive for the coronavirus was up dramatically in the last week — a troubling indication of the rapid spread of the highly contagious virus. On Saturday, the coronavirus positivity rate hit 6.1%, double the percentage it was on Nov. 1, when the rate was 2.98%.
On Saturday, San Diego and San Bernardino counties both recorded their highest single-day coronavirus case totals in the history of the pandemic, according to health officials.
Saturday continued a disturbing trend of daily case counts surpassing 4,000. On Saturday, 4,387 coronavirus cases were reported, according to an independent Times tally of coronavirus cases; on Friday, 4,158 were reported; and on Thursday, 4,943 were tallied, a single-day record.
If L.A. County averages 4,000 cases daily over a five-day period, officials have said they will plan to require the closure of outdoor restaurant dining areas, which would restrict eateries to serving food only by takeout and delivery for the first time since May. Officials said they plan to give three days’ notice before such a new health order would become effective.
And should L.A. County average 4,500 cases daily over a five-day period, officials have warned that they will impose a springtime style stay-at-home order.
Daily deaths are also starting to climb in L.A. County. On Saturday, an average of 23 residents in Los Angeles County were reported to be dying from COVID-19 daily over the previous seven days; that’s double the figure from early November, when about 11 people were dying a day.
There are a number of reasons for the sudden surge in coronavirus cases in California, where a surge began in late October.
They include the colder weather, which encourages people to stay indoors; increased travel from other harder-hit states; gatherings to watch the NBA Finals and the World Series, won by the Lakers and Dodgers, respectively; Halloween; protests and celebrations related to the election; a general increase in social gatherings; an increase in workplace outbreaks; a premature feeling that the danger of the pandemic had passed; and fatigue and even resentment of continuing with COVID-19 safety precautions, according to state and local health officials.
Cumulatively, California has recorded 1.1 million coronavirus cases and more than 18,700 deaths. Nationally, more than 12 million coronavirus cases have been diagnosed and more than 255,000 people in the U.S. have died.
Federal, state and local authorities are urging people to stay home for Thanksgiving and abandon Thanksgiving travel plans, whether it be a cross-country plane flight or a drive across town, to avoid spreading the virus at celebrations. The virus can be transmitted by people who seem perfectly healthy and never fall sick.
A travel advisory issued by California in mid-November implored residents to avoid nonessential out-of-state travel and asks those who arrive from outside of the state to quarantine for 14 days, meaning they should stay at home or other lodging as much as possible during that time and order food by delivery.
L.A. County’s director of public health, Barbara Ferrer, urged college students living on campus to not return home just for the Thanksgiving holiday. Students who do end up returning home for a month or more, she said, should quarantine in separate rooms for as much as possible for a 14-day period. If they haven’t yet returned home, she advised that it’s too late for them to partake in communal Thanksgiving celebrations, which risks spreading the virus to the rest of the family and friends.
Officials say it’s safest to keep Thanksgiving celebrations just among people in the household. For people who do intend to invite others from outside their household to gatherings, a state health order
COVID-19 has already killed more than double the number of people in L.A. County than died from the flu in the last cold-and-flu season. “This should serve as a severe demonstration of how much more dangerous COVID-19 is than the flu,” L.A. County Health Officer Dr. Muntu Davis said Thursday.
Last week, Los Angeles County issued an advisory urging people to stay home as much as possible for the next two to three weeks. On Friday, a new health order went into effect that ordered nonessential businesses and restaurants with outdoor dining areas to shut their doors to the public between 10 p.m. to 6 a.m.; although takeout and delivery services may continue during those overnight hours.
On Saturday, California’s new limited overnight stay-at-home order went into effect in counties in the most restrictive COVID-19 tier, which covers 94% of California’s population. It’s aimed at being far less intrusive than the statewide stay-at-home order implemented in the spring, and designed to curb late-night drinking and group gatherings, where inhibitions are lowered, masks are taken off and the virus can easily spread.
The order prohibits all gatherings between 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. among people from different households and all nonessential activities outside the home with people from other households.
The order does allow people to leave their homes in the overnight hours to go grocery shopping, pick up takeout food, walk the dog, and work for essential businesses, which includes working for restaurants serving food for takeout and delivery.
Experts say similar government-ordered limits on late-night activity in Europe have helped drive down surges in the coronavirus there.
The surge in cases has been seen across the state. Here is an analysis by region among selected counties in California’s most populated areas as of Saturday night. More detailed analysis for all of California’s 58 counties can be found on The Times’ California coronavirus tracker website
LGBT+ Native American young people are more likely to be at risk of suicide, new data has warned.
New research from the Trevor Project shows that LGBT+ youth from American Indian and Alaskan Native backgrounds are 2.5 times more likely to report a suicide attempt in the past year, compared to their LGBT+ peers.
American Indian and Alaskan Native youth who reported facing discrimination were also at greater risk of suicide, but supportive families and LGBT-affirming schools can reduced the suicide risk by nearly 60 per cent.
LGBT+ American Indian and Alaskan Native youth are also significantly more likely to experience housing instability, food insecurity and foster care.
Nearly half of the American Indian and Alaskan Native LGBT+ youth identified as transgender, non-binary, or questioning their gender, while 20 per cent identified as Two-Spirit.
Amy Green, director of research at The Trevor Project, said: “It is apparent that exposure to both LGBTQ-based stigma and racism has compounding effects and places American Indian/Alaskan Native youth who are Two-Spirit/LGBTQ at greater risk for suicide.
“Further, the disproportionality in reports of foster care, housing instability, and food insecurity highlights the devastating impact of historical oppression and trauma on American Indian/Alaskan Native youth.
“There is an urgent need to de-colonise systems that perpetuate the oppression of American Indian/Alaskan Native people.
“The Trevor Project will continue to advocate for intersectional programs and practices and increased investment in suicide prevention initiatives and research that specifically consider the unique needs of American Indian/Alaskan Native youth.”
The Trevor Project added: “To reduce suicidality, there is not only a need to make existing programs and practices more affirming of AI/AN and Two-Spirit/LGBTQ identities, but also to include key individuals in the lives of these youth such as community leaders, family members, and youth themselves in the development of suicide prevention initiatives.
“Our research team is committed to the ongoing dissemination of data that allows Trevor and others to better understand and address the needs of these youth.
“Further, our crisis services team works 24/7 to provide culturally-informed and affirming support to youth in crisis over the phone, online, and through text.”
Donald Trump-appointed judges reverved a vital ban on therapists offering conversion therapy – a denounced and debunked pseudosicenfitic practise – Friday (November 20), branding the ban “unconstititional”.
Also called reparative therapy, medical organisations across the world have widely rejected the treatment as traumatising and psychologically scarring, especially to minors.
In fact, the American Academy of Paediatrics warned against it as early as 1993. They said it reinforced anxiety and shame.
But in a tightly divided court in Florida, the 11th US Circuit Court of Appeals sided with two therapists who sought to argue that bans in the city of Boca Raton and Palm Beach County violated their free speech rights.
As NBC Newsreported, judges voted 2-1 against the conversion therapy ban. Both judges are appointed by Trump and are members of the conservative Federalist Society.
While Obama-appointed circuit Judge Barbara Martin dissented from the conservative majority, instead stressed the importance of protecting LGBT+ youth from a “harmful theraputic pratcise.”
In contrast, circuit Judge Britt Grant said that as much as enjoining the laws would allow “speech that many find concerning, even dangerous”, the First Amendment “does not allow communities to determine how their neighbors may be counseled about matters of sexual orientation or gender.”
As a result, the courts favoured conversion therapists Robert Otto and Julie Hamilton in a ruling that effectively dissolves the some 21 bans on the practice across cities and counties in Florida. Both said their clients often had “sincerely held religious beliefs conflicting with homosexuality.”
Also called reparative therapy, medical organisations across the world have widely debunked and rejected the treatment as traumatising and psychologically scarring, especially to minors.
In fact, the American Academy of Paediatrics warned against it as early as 1993. They said it reinforced anxiety and shame.
The practise, which has been around more than a century, has many techniques. Most commonly, talking therapy.
However, some physicians who practise the therapy are known to use shock treatments and induce associative nausea in patients, according to a 2018 study by the Williams Institute of the School of Law at the University of California, Los Angeles.
Despite such denouncement and discrediting, the ‘therapy’ has remained common in patches of the US.
Though, the impact of the practise is immeasurable, an estimated 698,000 LGBTI+ adults in the US have received conversion therapy, according to research.
Pride Media’s Out magazine is thrilled to release the 2020 Out100 presented by Lexus. The list remains the largest annual portfolio recognizing members of the LGBTQ+ for their ground-breaking, ripple-inducing, and culture-shifting impact nationwide. The coveted and anticipated Out100 issue features four covers including trailblazing actor Wilson Cruz, activist and BLM organizer Janaya Khan, actor and director Joe Mantello, and artist and icon Janelle Monáe.This year’s honorees make up one of the most diverse lists in Out magazine’s history, spanning several generations and a multitude of intersections from 18-year-old rap sensation Kidd Kenn and 99-year old trans WWII U.S. Navy fighter pilot Robina Asti to MSNBC journalist Rachel Maddow, who in a year of political tension was a voice of reason for the LGBTQ+ community. From fashion legend André Leon Talley, headlining musician Lizzo, comedian Wanda Sykes, actors Jeremy Pope and Cheyenne Jacksonto modeling industry heavyweight Ivan Bart, the creators of Queer Eye, and Joe Biden and Kamala Harris’s very queer team Jamal Brown, Reggie Greer, and Karine Jean-Pierre, inclusivity and progress are the driving force behind this year’s list. Each honoree represents not just the past but also the future. Leading into 2021, the LGBTQ+ community as a whole will undoubtedly reap the benefits of their accomplishments. This year might have brought an onslaught of challenges, but it also welcomed new opportunities to reflect about what matters to the LGBTQ+ community and what lies ahead in the fight for equality and justice. Now more than ever, it’s vital to recognize the powerful voices leading the charge and sounding off the new vanguard of queer leaders. In a year of Pride celebrated at home instead of in the streets, community support from company partners like Lexus, Citi, Gilead, McDonald’s USA, Truly Hard Seltzer, and Stoli® Group USA, LLC has never been more importantor helpful in amplifying these powerful Out100 voices moving the LGBTQ+ community forward. “Community building has been the bedrock of the LGBTQ+ rights movement, and part of that is understanding the fact that we are not and have never been monolithic. All of us have a story and role to play in this fight. All of our experiences and lived realities are different, special, and integral in building a better world — together. The Out100 list is a representation of this journey. For 26 years, it has stood the test of time and continues to empower the next generation of LGBTQ+ thought leaders, artists, and professionals to create a more inclusive future for all of us.” — David Artavia, Editor in Chief, Out
This year, Out’s nationally recognized and respected Out100 issue extends beyond the brand’s print and online properties with two exciting virtual events. On Friday, November 20, the cofounder of Black Lives Matter Canada, Janaya Khan, will moderate a dynamic “How Do We Come Back From This?” symposium on what moving out of the last four years looks like for culture, politics, the movement, and ourselves, including Emmy-winning creator of Transparent Joey Soloway, trans activist Ashlee Marie Preston, and PR strategist Kelly Bush Novak. On Saturday, November 21, the Out100 culminates in the first-ever 2020 Out100 Virtual Honoree Induction Ceremony, live at 5 p.m. Pacific (8 p.m. Eastern) at Out.com/Out100Live, and available on all Revry live channels and on-demand at 6 p.m. Pacific (9 p.m. Eastern) at watch.revry.tv.
The 2020 Out100 Virtual Honoree Induction Ceremony will feature appearances by 2020 Out100 Honorees: Cover stars Wilson Cruz and Joe Mantello. In the “Television” category: Theo Germaine, David Collins, Michael Williams & Bob Eric (Scout Productions), Brandon KyleGoodman, Cheyenne Jackson, Jamal Sims, Jeremy Pope, Shakina, and Jo Ellen Pellman. In the “Fashion and Beauty” category: Patrick Church, Patrick Starrr, and Ivan Bart. In the “The Firsts” category: Shevrin Jones, Paris Barclay, Sharon-Franklin Brown, and Kierra Johnson. In the “Advocacy” category: Mark S. King, Rashad Robinson, Queen Jean, Cody Renard Richard, Scott Wiener, Mary Trump, Rachel Levine, Malcolm Kenyatta, Tiffany Caban, and Ritchie Torres. In the “Biden’s Team” category: Jamal Brown and Reggie Greer. In the “Thinkers” category: Andrew Gelwicks. In the “All Stars” category: Thomas Beattie. In the “Film” category: Brigette Lundy-Paine, and Gerard Bush & Christopher Rens. In the “Innovators” category: Richard Gray.*And Special Guest – Mel C
Tune in and follow the conversation on social media: #Out100 “Now more than ever, it’s important to highlight the monumental achievements the LGBTQ+ community has made against the backdrop of a giant cultural shift and an evolving landscape of entertainment, politics, social justice, industry, and so much more. This list is critical. Before I was in charge of Out, I long dreamed of making it on the list myself. I never did, but it still pushed me to do better.” — Diane Anderson-Minshall, CEO & Editorial Director, Pride Media Diane Anderson-Minshall, David Artavia, and the entire family at Out express their deepest gratitude to those involved in making the Out100 issue and the Out100 Virtual Honoree Induction Ceremony an experience to never forget, with a special thank-you to the presenting sponsor Lexus for all their contributions. Find out who made this year’s Out100 list exclusively at Out.com/Out100. The full list drops Thursday, November 19tht. The Out100 print issue will be available on newsstands December 1st, 2020. Subscribe today. For More Information, Assets, and Interview Avails, please contact: JB@PotentPR.com
About Pride Media Pride Media is the largest publisher of LGBTQ+ content in the U.S., including Out, The Advocate, PRIDE.com, Out Traveler, and Plus. With over 53 years of award-winning editorial spanning digital, print, social and experiential, our content shapes the LGBTQ+ landscape—serving as the go-to destination for our audience across entertainment, news & politics, LGBTQ+ rights, travel, wellness, finance, food & spirits, and fashion. By covering every aspect of the LGBTQ+ experience, Pride Media’s brands use the power of words to inspire the full spectrum of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer people to live life with pride.
Advocacy groups are calling for the incoming Biden-Harris administration to make LGBTQ rights a cornerstone of its foreign policy.
The Council for Global Equality in a policy paper it released after the election calls for the new administration to issue an executive order within its first week in the White House that would lay “the institutional groundwork for supporting global LGBTI rights, transgender equality and reproductive rights.”
The advocacy group is also urging the new administration to “direct that gender issues feature prominently in a Biden foreign policy” and to “rethink religious exemptions to policies, with due consideration given to the public funding and purposes employed.” The Council for Global Equality, among other things, recommends the Biden-Harris administration nominate openly lesbian and transgender people for ambassadorships and “reinstate promptly” the State Department’s special envoy for the promotion of LGBTQ rights at the level of an ambassador.
The Council for Global Equality recommends the U.S. should rejoin both the U.N. Human Rights Council and the World Health Organization. The Council for Global Equality also calls for the Biden-Harris administration to formally renounce the State Department’s controversial Commission on Unalienable Rights that current Secretary of State Mike Pompeo created last year.
“We are excited to work with the Biden-Harris administration to center the rights of LGBTI individuals in U.S. foreign policy after four devastating years under the Trump administration,” Center for Global Equality Chair Mark Bromley told the Washington Blade on Monday.
The Center for American Progress this week made similar recommendations in its own policy paper that it released. The D.C.-based progressive think tank, like the Council for Global Equality, also calls for Congress to pass the Greater Leadership Overseas for the Benefit of Equality (GLOBE) Act, a bill that would require the U.S. to continue to promote LGBTQ rights abroad through its foreign policy.
The Human Rights Campaign and OutRight Action International have also echoed the Center for American Progress and the Council for Global Equality’s recommendations.
President Obama in 2011 issued a memorandum that made the promotion of LGBTQ rights abroad a cornerstone of U.S. foreign policy.
The Trump administration did not formalize this directive, but U.S. diplomats have continued to support gay rights abroad.
The White House in 2019 tapped then-U.S. Ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell to lead an initiative that encourages countries to decriminalize homosexuality. Grenell is one of the five openly gay ambassadors who Trump named during his administration.
The Trump administration has nevertheless faced sharp criticism over its domestic LGBTQ rights policy that included the reinstatement of the ban on openly transgender servicemembers. Activists in the U.S. and around the world also condemned the White House over its hardline immigration policy they say has made LGBTQ asylum seekers even more vulnerable.
A Biden-Harris transition spokesperson on Tuesday directed the Blade to the incoming administration’s LGBTQ rights platform.
The incoming administration has pledged to “significantly bolster the offices” at the State Department and the U.S. Agency for International Development that are “dedicated to promoting global LGBTQ+ rights and development.” Biden has also said he will “immediately appoint” a special LGBTQ rights envoy at the State Department and a special coordinator at USAID to handle the aforementioned issues.
The incoming administration, among other things, supports the GLOBE Act and the use of the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act to sanction those who commit anti-LGBTQ rights abuses. Biden says his administration will also “stand with local civil society” that champions LGBTQ rights.”
“As president, Biden will restore the United States’ standing as a global leader defending LGBTQ+ rights and developments and work closely with our partners and like-minded governments to ensure that violence and discrimination against LGBTQ+ individuals do not go unchecked,” reads Biden’s LGBTQ platform.