Happy Sunday! It’s brunch time, so don’t be dumb. We’re half way through Pride Month. We’ve got a story on that, a World Cup update plus a campaign to remind people that our blood is useless. Of course, we have our Whack Job of the Week, too! See who it is below.
Here are the week’s 5 news stories that’ll keep you looking well-informed at brunch:
1. Our Blood Is Useless
As a way to protest the FDA ban against sexually active gay men donating blood, the New York based design firm Mother has launched their “Blood Is Blood” campaign. The centerpiece of the campaign is this gay blood t-shirt, a shirt is screen-printed with a special ink created from “useless gay blood” refused by blood donation centers.
Originally, in 1983, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) put a lifetime ban on MSM donating blood; the change to a year-long ban was only passed in 2015. The FDA claims it is to keep HIV out of the donated blood supply, even though all blood is thoroughly screened for HIV. Just imagine, if the FDA were to allow MSM to donate blood, it’s estimated that 1.8 million more lives could be saved from the additional 615,300 pints of blood.
Let that sink in. Our community needs to keep lobbying the FDA to eliminate this archaic ban.
2. World Cup Update: Not Safe, No Surprise
Russia, the World Cup and LGBTQ fans – what could go wrong?
We knew safety could potentially be an issue for LGBTQ people in Russia and we have already had some incidents and the tournament is one-day old. One activist has been arrested and three gay soccer fans have been savagely attacked so far not to mention reports of gay bashings. Famous British LGBTQ rights activist Peter Tatchell was arrested after his one-person protest against the year-and-a-half-long campaign of kidnapping, torturing and murdering LGBTQ citizens in Chechnya. The gay bashing of two French LGBTQ soccer fans resulted in head injuries and a fractured jaw.
FIFA, the organization that oversees the World Cup can not continue to award this popular event to countries with poor LGBTQ rights records. Russia has a terrible record and has banned LGBTQ citizens from protesting. They will certainly do very little over the next two weeks to protect us. The good news is that America has been awarded the 2028 World Cup and will partner with Mexico and Canada.
3. Refreshingly Rotten
In celebration of LGBTQ Pride month, the review aggregation website, Rotten Tomatoes has released it’s top ten LGBTQ television shows and movies based on their Tomatometer. The “rotten” / “fresh” ratings site has created quite a list of award winning content. We admit, we’ve missed a few of these. After some Pride celebrations, it’s definitely time for some “Netflix and chill.” Get watching!
4. Posh Pride Purchases
As we get to the middle of LGBTQ Pride month, we continue to see more and more companies release products specifically in celebration of our community. This is a great list of 11 products that you may not have seen and some (all) are a must-have. It’s important that we show our appreciation to these companies for their support of diversity and inclusion during pride month – and all year long. Make a purchase and support. Plus, you can show off at brunch that you’re not dumb. You’re smart and stylish! The LaCoste polo you’re wearing says so!
5. Whack Job of the Week: “Pastor” Dave Grisham
Dave Grisham, a “pastor” with Last Frontier Evangelism, recently disrupted a family-friendly PrideFest event in Anchorage, Alaska.
Drag Queen Story Time, a ticketed event at the Loussac Library, was meant to celebrate reading, creativity and LGBTQ acceptance. Instead, Grisham recorded himself as he screamed anti-LGBTQ remarks at a group of children. Yes, children. Once Grisham entered the room, two drag queens and a drag king can be seen reading a book to a room of children and their parents. “Hey, kids, my name is Pastor David, and I want to tell you there’s no such thing as transgenders,” he interrupted. “God made men men and women women.” He was immediately escorted off premises.
This creep also, apparently, likes to ruin young kids Christmas by telling them Santa doesn’t exist. How miserable do you have to be to hate Drag Queens and Santa?
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.