body-positive underwear
body-positive underwear

Don’t Be Dumb at Brunch: Joe Biden, a #MeToo for Homophobia and Body-Positive Undies

Happy Sunday! It’s brunch time, so don’t be dumb. This week we bring you stories on former Vice President Joe Biden’s new initiative to help the LGBTQ community, a push to eradicate homophobia in professional athletics by the only openly gay male athlete in pro-sports, some cool new “manties” in a body-positive underwear campaign and the results of a scary new survey. Of course, we have our Whack Job of the Week? See who it is below.

Here are the week’s 5 news stories that’ll keep you looking well-informed at brunch:

1. Joe Biden Tells Parents to Love Their LGBTQ Kids

This week, former Vice President Joe Biden launched “As You Are,” an initiative urging families to embrace their LGBTQ children. The first video for the campaign included pop star and LGBT ally Cyndi Lauper, former gay retired NFL football player Wade Davis, transgender model Geena Rocero and other LGBTQ activists.

Biden, who famously got out “over his skis” when he came out in support of marriage equality a week before his boss did, hopes these stories of rejection and acceptance will shed light on the impact families can have on young LGBTQ people’s lives.

n the video Biden says, “We’ll use our resources to highlight the harms of family rejection and lift up research, best practices and personal stories to show the importance of family acceptance.” Meanwhile, current VP Mike Pence is giving speeches to anti-gay groups and talking about Trump’s plan for a space force. We collectively shake our heads.

2. A Gay #MeToo in Pro Sports?

Minnesota United Soccer player, Collin Martin is the only openly gay male player in all of professional sports right now. Let that sink it. Maybe he’s the only one because of homophobia in sports. Well, Collin has teamed up with Athlete Ally and the Ross Initiative in Sports for Equality (RISE) in hopes of creating a sort of #MeToo movement addressing homophobia in sports.

Martin has been speaking to student-athletes and championing initiatives to address anti-LGBTQ sentiment in sports while working to develop training that educates colleges coaches on stopping homophobia before it ever appears on-field, during practice or in the locker room.

It certainly won’t be an easy job considering that a 2015 survey of 9,500 athletes from six English-speaking countries found 83% of male athletes remain closeted to their teammates. In addition to that, 84% had witnessed homophobia in a sporting match and 80% said they didn’t feel safe being openly gay as a competitor or spectator.

3. Survey Says Half of Americans Are Okay with Businesses Refusing Service to Same-Sex Couples

We hope you’re sitting down. A new survey taken soon after the LGBTQ community suffered a setback with the Masterpiece Cakeshop Supreme Court case shows that 46% of respondents believe caterers, florists and other wedding-related businesses should be allowed to refuse to serve same-sex couples if serving them violates their religious beliefs.

On the flip side, 48% said proprietors don’t have that right. The Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI) survey shows an increase in support of so-called “religious freedom” for businesses compared to the results of a 2017 survey.

Even though support for marriage equality is at an all-time high at 64%, many people — especially other communities such as African-American and Latinx communities — are not as settled on the issue of requiring business have an “open to all” policy when owners object to same-sex couples on religious grounds.

This survey clearly shows that in the world of Trump, we have plenty of work still to do.

4. We’re Feeling the Surge Through This New Body-Positive Campaign

We love it when a brand actually demonstrates inclusivity in a real and meaningful way. Some underwear brands have tried and failed to really be body-positive casting maybe one too many models while trying to represent non-model bodies.

Well, leave it to the U.K. brand Surge to show us how to do it. This body-positive underwear brand has really embraced body diversity in their latest campaign. The photo campaign depicts guys from ages 21 to 43 including men of color and a trans man.

Some look like “lift bros,” but the others are realistic representations of everyday men that inspire us to embrace our own positive body image.

5. Whack Job of the Week: Hey Allen Loftis … Get it Straight!

Discrimination against anyone sucks. But it’s especially hateful and stupid when a person discriminates against someone because they think they know what they are.

Take Allen Loftis. He gay bashed a group of straight guys because he thought they were gay. His victims were dressed up at an 80’s rock cover band concert. Really, he saw their wild clothes, assumed they were gay and went in punching.

The guys fought back, but they still endured injuries. Allen was arrested and landed himself in a heap of trouble because even though none of his victims identify as gay, they’re still pressing hate crime charges.

We hope Allen gets some solitary time (and mental help) to think about what it means to be a hater.

What do you think of the body-positive underwear campaign and this week’s other LGBTQ news stories?

Paul Katami and Jeff Zarrillo were one of two plaintiff couples in California’s 2013 challenge of Proposition 8, which brought marriage equality back to the state after being ruled on by the U.S. Supreme Court. These activists also host the weekly podcast The Husbands. Catch them there or follow them on Instagram @JeffZandPaulK.