Thursday, August 31, 2017

Montrose area (LGBTQ area) of Houston flooded; will this raise housing questions?


HRC has a blog post “How to Help Texas Today”, link here

There is a Montrose fund for the LGBT community in Houston.  It corresponds to Cedar Springs in Dallas, which I know very well.  A YouTube video shows that the Montrose area is heavily flooded.  I visited it many times in the 1980s.  I don't think it's "that close" to a bayou as I remember, so it should drain earlier (if I have my geography right).  I do wonder how well organized the tavern and bar owners are to help each other out.  Caven was a big owner of clubs in Texas when I lived there in the 1980s.  

  

The question naturally comes up, will there be housing requests, similar to what we have seen with asylum seekers, especially from other cities in Texas, and maybe farther away.  How would they be coordinated?  Single people may be more likely to want to move permanently than large families.  

I wonder if Minute Maid Park (Houston Astros) could have housed evacuees.  

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Outright published Arab Mass Media report on LGBTQ rights in the Middle East


Outright has published an online pamphlet “Arab Mass Media”, “A Monitoring Report Looking at Sexuality and Gender Identity in Arabic Media from 2014 to 2017”, link here

The report separates gender identity and intersex issues and notes that international bodies on human rights have been slow to recognize these, in comparison to the more familiar issues of sexuality for cis-gender people.

The PDF for the main report is here

Thursday, August 24, 2017

White House issues guidelines on "transgender ban" to Pentagon


The White House has set guidelines for how Trump’s “transgender ban” in the military will proceed.
   
The key points seem to be that people who say they are transgender cannot enlist, and that Mattis can remove active duty transgender troops who are not deployable,  Further, it appears that sexual reassignment surgery will not be provided. 

It’s important to remember that transgender troops are deployed today and usually do not run into issues.  Maybe unusual, but sometimes female-to-male transgender persons match men in physical capabilities, even to the point that professional sports would be possible.  And Kristin Beck served as a Navy Seal as a male but did reassignment surgery after retirement (which does not seem to create objection now with the GOP).  


Several transgender military members have sued already, and more litigation is expected.

Gordon Lubold reports in the Wall Street Journal here. The report indicates that Trump’s tweet was motivated by the fact that enlistment of transgender people had been set to start July 1, 2017.  

The ban does not affect cis-gender gay troops, some of whom I know are deployed now (personally).  And so far, no casualties.



Update: Aug. 29

The Palm Center has published a papers, explaining (1) that Mattis's discretion to retain transgender soldiers is much less than reported and (2) how the trans policy is "worse than DADT: (Slate).

But later today Mattis announced formation of a panel to determine transgender readiness guidance (CNN).  Vox (Alex  Ward) reports that Mattis has until Feb 21, 2018 to figure out the rules for combat readiness and that the full policy goes into effect March 23, 2018.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Company offers spyware to parents to spot gay teens, claiming it protects the family's "continuation" into the future


An article in “Newownext” by Dan Avery reports that a French spyware company wants to sell social media monitoring software to parents to predict whether a son is gay, link

The company boldly says this is step that a family must take to guarantee its survival and lineage. 

 “The sexual orientation of your children” is “responsible for the continuation of your family.”

The article shows a particularly attractive lean white male teen as a cover draw.
  
I was an only child so this was indeed a big deal for my own parents.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Uganda police cancel Pride 2017 in the country out of vigilantism


Pride Uganda 2017 was cancelled after careful and determined planning, after persistent police threats. The Kuchu Times has a detailed statement here. A good example of the heckler's veto. 
  
The statement reports that police were concerned about security and could not protect the festival because “sexual minorities have no rights” as specific groups in Uganda, even if the aggressive laws have softened a bit. 
  
By User: (WT-shared) Tending at wts wikivoyage, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

Saturday, August 12, 2017

More LGBT asylum seekers from Central America; transgender military ban halted by North Korean situation


The Washington Blade, in a story by Michael J. Lavers,  is reporting the entry of at least sixteen LGBT (some are trans) asylum seekers from Central America who came through Mexico and arrived at the border at Nogales.  It is not clear yet how they will be assisted, whether they would go to detention or be housed somewhere.  It’s not completely clear yet if Trump’s various EO’s matter. This blog had discussed the idea of parole form detention here April 1.



The Blade also reports (story by Karen Ocamb)  that the implementation of Trump’s tweeted transgender ban in the military has been put on hold because of “the threat of nuclear war with North Korea”.  On July 29, I had written a Wordpress blog posting suggesting that Trump’s transgender ban could make him look bad in facing North Korea.  Trump had written his notorious tweet two days before DPRK’s second ICBM test and I wrote this blog posting a couple more days after.  

Jennifer Williams, a "trans Republican" has a perspective on the trans ban here (published by Log Cabin Republicans). 

Wednesday, August 09, 2017

Baltimore Transgender Alliance creates a hosting network for homeless trans


The Baltimore Transgender Alliance has created a group called HostHome, a “network of guests, hosts and patrons”, according to a story by Steve Charing in the Washington Blade here. 

The group apparently has some interest in raising money for group homes.  Apparently there are individual hosts, but it was not clear from the article that it asks for hosts, by comparison with DC Center Global and asylum seekers.
  

Here’s the group’s Facebook page

The Baltimore Sun has hosted one of the group’s podcasts, here

Saturday, August 05, 2017

Trump instructs on transgender attrition from military; Outwrite Book Fair in Washington DC


The Trump administration has passed some guidance down on transgender soldiers, saying they will not be allowed to reenlist, and officers must leave when their commissions expire. Lambda Legal has announced it is about to file legal action, as in this story today

Rumors about this outcome were circulating today as I attended the 2017 Outwrite LGBT Book Fair at the DC Center in Washington DC.  I’ve given some details on my Book Reviews blog today.  Transgender-related (and gender fluidity themes seemed more in evidence this year than last, when I had an exhibit with my “Do Ask Do Tell” series.  Yet, culturally, the transgender and fluid community circulates rather separately from the cis-male world of a lot of dance floors (so it seemed last night at Town).

I believe that Center Global would have held its monthly meeting at noon (I was there around 1 PM) but there was not discussion while I was there of asylum and hosting  I have not been able to work out a plan to assist with that so far this year, and may sell my inherited trust house, as I have explained on other posts.  This year, I did not set up a table for my “Do Ask Do Tell” books as I had in 2016.
Canada has started accepted refugees from Chechnya (maybe these are really asylum seekers), story.

Thursday, August 03, 2017

Former CEO of Rentboy gets 6 months in prison; judge noted he had done good works with his illegal income


Jeffrey Hurant, former CEO of “Rentboy.com”  (link is for legal defense fund; the site no longer operates and domain name is for sale), has been sentenced to six months in prison in federal court in Brooklyn, for promoting prostitution.  But the judge admitted, in somewhat libertarian fashion, that Hurant had done considerable good for the gay community in fighting AIDS and HIV with safe-sex education and had often cooperated with law enforcement in other matters.


Here' is the CBS News story

The story reminds one of the controversy over Backpage, which has been used in heterosexual trafficking.  Bills in Congress (reported on my BillBoushka blog yesterday) could make websites and web service providers share more downstream liability, carving out Section 230 exceptions.  This could indirectly affect amateur reporting on gay issues like everything else.



Milo Yiannopoulos has reported a brutal beating of white teens in Quincy MA which was filmed on a cellphone without a 911 call.  This might be a gay bashing.  Here is his link. I have sent this story on to ABC7News.