Happy Sunday! It’s brunch time. Don’t be Dumb. This week we bring you stories about the work to overturn marriage equality, the denial of visas to gay diplomat spouses and the release of a very interesting study on trans genetics. Plus, who will be the next Superman if Henry Cavill calls it quits? Is the world ready for a Black Superman? And as always we have our “Whackjob 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. Will We See a Reversal of Marriage Equality?
Marriage equality is only a few years old, but is it now in danger of being reversed? Well, the National Organization for Marriage is hoping to make that so. The group has been in the business of hate and discrimination through several state initiatives, even exporting its vile and bigoted message to other countries when efforts suffered here in the United States.
Now the org is banking on Brett Kavanaugh as a Supreme Court Justice to help overturn the rights afforded to millions of Americans. No doubt they will fabricate and fund lawsuits in hopes that one of them will make it before the highest court. Even though the Obergefell ruling seems bulletproof, you never know what could happen when the highest court in the land leans conservative. Stay tuned.
2. Is the World Ready for a Non-White Superman?
Is it time for a Black Superman? A Latinx Superman? How about one played by an openly gay actor? Henry Cavill is reportedly stepping away from the role and there are plenty of amazing, diverse actors who could play the Man of Steel.
Recently many superhero films have been criticized for white-washing or hetero-washing characters and storylines, even after smash hit The Black Panther changed the game. We say it’s time for a little more inclusive representation for our heroes. Don’t you?
3. Get Married or Get Out
In yet another move to continue chipping away at LGBTQ rights, the Trump administration is denying visas to the partners of more than 100 gay diplomats unless they are a married couple. Officials say the decision was motivated by legal reciprocity rather than an anti-gay agenda.
More than 100 families are affected by the decision, of which 55 are posted at U.S.-based international organizations such as the United Nations, says a State Department official. And, in case you were wondering, only 12% of UN member states even allow same-sex marriage.
If we’ve said it once, we’ve said it a thousand times: Elections have consequences. Under the new guidelines, diplomats — regardless of sexual orientation — will need to be married by the end of the year in order for their partners to receive visas. It’s a complete reversal of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s policy under Obama.
Reminder: Election day is Nov. 6.
4. We Now Know More About Trans Genetics
A recently released study found a “significant association” between several genes and gender dysphoria, signaling a strong likelihood that trans people are different from cis people on a genetic level. The research backs up other studies that point to a biological component to the transgender identity. It’s about brain activity.
So, no, trans people are not “mentally ill” as others will have you believe. This study shows brain activity strongly similar to the gender a person identifies with. It’s like we’ve always said about the LGBTQ community — it’s genetics, not choice. And this study helps prove that.
5. Whackjob of the Week: Roman Catholic Priest Paul Kalchik
As if the Catholic church hasn’t had enough to deal with in recent years, we now have to witness the awful representation of the homophobia we know runs so deep. Paul Kalchik — a Roman Catholic priest and head of the Resurrection Parish church in Chicago, Illinois — cut up and burned a rainbow flag even after he was told not to do so by the overseeing Cardinal. The flag was brought into the church in 1991 by a gay pastor who began holding services there. Since then there were no problems until Kalchik decided to use his faith for hate.
But he didn’t get away with the act, though unfortunately the flag and its history were destroyed. Soon after the hateful act was committed, Kalchik was called out by public protest and then asked to step away from the parish to “receive pastoral support so his needs can be assessed” by the same Cardinal who warned him to cool it.
Kalchik now says he’s in hiding from “rabid gays.”
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.
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