LGBTQ media organization GLAAD has for the first time issued a Media Report Card, evaluating 17 mainstream media publications based on their coverage of LGBTQ people and LGBTQ rights. This first ever rendition namely focuses on the same-day reporting from February 25, which is when the Equality Act passed the U.S. House of Representatives by bipartisan vote. Based on that, most of the 17 received failing grades for “repeated dangerous & false anti-trans rhetoric.” GLAAD Ceo and President Sarah Kate Ellis said “LGBTQ voices cannot be left out of the coverage of the Equality Act, especially while lawmakers use their platforms to spread inaccurate information about them. We are urging the mainstream press to include LGBTQ people while covering issues important to our lives, and to recognize and call out misinformation.” Of the 17 that were evaluated, GLAAD issued failing grades to eight publications, substandard grades to three publications, passing marks to five publications, and a “super” failing grade to one. None received an “Outstanding” grade by GLAAD’s methodology. GLAAD found that Newsweek was the “worst offender” among mainstream media. In alphabetical order, the other eight failing mainstream news sources by GLAAD’s determination were Bloomberg, the Boston Globe, CBS News, CNN, FOX News, The Hill, the New York Times, and the Wall Street Journal. Publications in these categories, overall, were found to have “failed to include any quotes from LGBTQ advocates” and “failed to contextualize need for Equality Act.” In slight contrast, even FOX News included a “quote from LGBTQ Congressmember,” out Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI) who sponsored the Equality Act. Their report was contributed to by the Associated Press (AP), which received a passing grade from GLAAD separately. In addition to the AP, the other passing publications were HuffPost, NPR, Reuters, and the Washington Post. They all included statements from LGBTQ advocates or members of Congress. The publications that fell into the “Satisfactory/Needs Improvement” grading included ABC News, NBC News, and USA Today. GLAAD notes that it is not trying to “shame or attack” the journalists or publications featured in the report, but rather offer “suggestions, best practices, and links to helpful resources” alongside the grades.
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki, reiterating “trans rights are human rights,” warned state legislatures today that passing bills targeting transgender youth is against the law.
Psaki said “The president believes that trans rights are human rights, and that no one should be discriminated on the basis of sex, not only is this the law of the land, it’s his own deeply held view.” Psaki addressed the issue as many state legislatures are advancing bills that would restrict transgender youth’s access to sports and transition-related care. The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision last year in Bostock v. Clayton County determined anti-transgender discrimination is a form of sex discrimination, thus illegal in the workforce under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act. Although the ruling didn’t purport to address sports, the logic behind the decision has broad applications to all laws against sex discrimination, including Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972. Laws seeking to target transgender youth would seem to flout the Bostock decision as well as the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Psaki also invoked the executive order Biden signed on his first day in office seeking to implement the Bostock decision, making it clear it applies to students in the context of bathrooms, locker rooms, and sports. Also during the briefing, Psaki addressed the Equality Act, legislation to expand the ban on discrimination against LGBTQ people under federal law.
A State Department spokesman confirmed yesterday that Online platforms directed by Russian intelligence are spreading disinformation about two of the coronavirus vaccines being used in the US. The agency’s Global Engagement Center identified three Russian outlets — News Front, New Eastern Outlook and Oriental Review — that are spreading not only misinformation about the virus, but also regarding international organizations, military conflicts, protests; and any divisive issue that they can exploit. The state department said “These sites all vary in their reach, tone, and audience — but they all are spreading Russian propaganda and disinformation. The State Department’s finding of a link between these sites and Russian Intelligence is a result of a joint interagency conclusion. Dmitry Peskov, A spokesman for the Kremlin denied that the country’s intelligence services were spearheading the disinformation campaign saying “It’s nonsense. Russian special services have nothing to do with any criticism against vaccines.” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Monday that the Biden administration is taking steps to address efforts by Russia to undermine confidence in the vaccines.
U.S. regulators have approved the first long-acting drug combo for HIV, monthly shots that can replace the daily pills now used to control infection with the AIDS virus. Thursday’s approval of the two-shot combo called Cabenuva is expected to make it easier for people to stay on track with their HIV medicines and to do so with more privacy. It’s a huge change from not long ago, when patients had to take multiple pills several times a day, carefully timed around meals. Dr Steven Deeks, an HIV specialist at UC San Francisco said today “That will enhance quality of life. People don’t want those daily reminders that they’re HIV infected.” Cabenuva combines rilpivirine, sold as Edurant by Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen unit, and a new drug — cabotegravir, from ViiV Healthcare. They’re packaged together and given as separate shots once a month. Dosing every two months also is being tested. Studies found that patients greatly preferred the shots.
At Queer News Tonight we bring the LGBTQ commuinity the best of emerging artists, photographers, calendars and other visual artists that should come to your attention. Tonight we bring you an interesting on-line exhibit by photo artist AdeY. This Swedish & British multidisciplinary artist works to study subjects such as the human body’s balance, strength and physics. The exhibit reflects a decade long representation of the male nude form. Features in the online exhibit called “BOYS WILL BE BOYS… BOYS! BOYS! BOYS! Available at adey.co, boysboysboys.org or adey social media platforms on instagram through February 5. It includes 2015 “Ascension. Here they photograph and portray the body in its purest form – bare, undressed, and naked. The work seeks to create a non-sexualized and open-minded representation of humankind, which is based on a dream of acceptance. 2020 Gateway celebrating the differences about physics, gender, race and sexuality. 2016 “Hangout” represents more than 60 photographers from 25 countries – including China, India, Iran, Poland, Russia and Turkey where gay rights are repressed and queer lives under constant threat. “Autumn is coming”, 2015 “Boys Will Be Boys”. Other former presentations include titles “Formation”, “Horizon”, “Sensitive Surface”, “Ying Yang”, “Are You Sure?” and 2018 “Layer”, The images are eye popping and thought provoking for the LGBTQ community.
Friday night Fox News and Tucker Carlson declared war on the LGBTQ community. Last week’s trans descrimination ban signed by Executive Order by President Biden totally pissed Tucker Carlson, Sean Hannity and Laura Ingrahams Friday night broadcasts on Fox. Carlson lead his news broadcast with, what he described as “the descrimination of woman” that the Trans descrimination ban represented. He suggested that all Americans could get into the woman’s bathroom stall. The story dominated the top and the largest portion of Carlson’s show. Interestingly he suggested that the LGB of the American community does not support this Trans descrimination policy. He also suggested that so many in the US are not speaking out against the new Executive order for fear of being characterized as homophobic. All three shows Friday night focused extensively on a cultural war on Trans descrimination, trans student participation in sports and the contradictions it represents. Fox news made a clear commitment to demonstrate just two days after President Bidens inauguration that trans issues will be front and center to the conservative right of America and especially fox news.
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A week ago, Jen Ellis of Essex Junction, Vt., was living her normal life as a schoolteacher with her partner, Liz, and their daughter. Now she’s getting thousands of emails a day asking for mittens like the ones she made for Sen. Bernie Sanders that he wore in a pic from last week’s inauguration of President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris that went viral.
She told Slate “I think my Gmail has crashed now.” In just a few hours after the photo of the mittens went viral, Ellis had thousands of emails either requesting interviews with her or inquiring about how they too could get some mittens like “Bernie’s.” Ellis says she was actually one of the last to know that Sanders wore the mittens, as she was teaching during the inauguration. She said “As soon as I was done with my remote teaching, I hopped in my car and drove home. It was a huge blizzard yesterday up here in Vermont, so it took me forever. As soon as I walked in the door, my partner was like, ‘You’re not going to believe this.’” She initially gave the mittens to Sanders back in 2016. Ellis’s daughter goes to the preschool that Sanders’s daughter-in-law Liza Driscoll owns and operates. After Sanders lost the Democratic presidential nomination to Hillary Clinton, she asked Driscoll to give him a pair of mittens she made. The various meme’s of her queer made mittons have been viewed an estimated 1 billion times since last week.
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Homosexuality is illegal in the United Arab Emirates and even cross-dressing is forbidden, but Dubai will host the International Conference on Gender Identity and LGBT Rights in May. The country has recently started to modernize its legal system to make it less reliant on Islamic law and more in step with other countries. The UAE announced changes to the legal code that better protects women, loosens alcohol restrictions, and alters divorce and marriage laws. The World Academy of Science, Engineering and Technology’s website has information about the upcoming conference, but doesn’t mention the country’s laws that could end up landing any presenters in prison.