Writing an LGBTQ round-up this weekend feels like a distraction away from what is rightly dominating the news and needs our full attention: the sudden and messy implementation of the Muslim Ban in America, signed on Holocaust Memorial Day.
The White House website for 45 (for that is how I will reference him) instantly wiped away any commitments or even interest in LGBT rights. The official line so far from his administration is they ‘don’t know’ what LGBTQ rights passed under President Obama may be revoked. Following from last week’s global Women’s Marches, an LGBTQ march in Washington DC is already being planned around Pride weekend in June. But as this weekend has shown, we won’t wait to gather and protest.
— BuzzFeed LGBT (@BuzzFeedLGBT) January 22, 2017
Digital activism makes an impact too. Linda Riley has been relentlessly campaigning and signing supporters up to her #No2LGBTHate Thunderclap this Wednesday afternoon at 4pm GMT. The campaign is asking Twitter to take more responsibility and action for homophobic, biphobic and transphobic abuse from its users. With over 2000 supporters so far, including Yoko Ono, the campaign will reach 24 million people and make clear that freedom of speech isn’t a permit for hate speech.
— Linda Riley (@LindaRiley8) January 10, 2017
Love still doesn’t win in the Church of England
The Church of England has spent two years having Shared Conversations about sexuality. Last Friday, the House of Bishops ended that process with a report that changed nothing. They insist the church should ‘stand against homophobia’ while simultaneously refusing same-sex marriages. This is the very definition of homophobia that not only hurts and turns away LGBTQ Christians, but reinforces to non-Christians who care about their queer friends, equality and justice that the church is irrelevant and discriminatory.
Documents like this are not just pieces of paper. For LGBT Christians, this is our life, our well-being, our place in our faith community.
— Vicky Beeching (@vickybeeching) January 27, 2017
A very brief, quick over view from me.
“I trusted because what else was I to do?” https://t.co/v1LcOaRCRK
— Lucy Gorman (@lucy25) January 27, 2017
Go shopping at Lush whose Valentine’s Day ads in America feature same-sex couples. This is a good time to remind everyone Lush is my favourite shop, and it’s my birthday next week. And keep reading The Independent and The Guardian/Observer. No other UK papers come close to their longstanding commitment to LGBTQ identities and reporting.
— Lush North America (@lushcosmetics) January 27, 2017
Here’s what your sleeping position reveals about your relationship https://t.co/D2tcxxZONM
— The Independent (@Independent) January 25, 2017
— Observer Magazine (@ObsMagazine) January 22, 2017
Love does win in DC church
Here’s one more story from Washington DC to tie all the others together. Sally and Maria are married and are about to jointly become Senior Pastors at Calvary Baptist Church in the city. On the same Sunday morning protestors told them they were ‘going to hell’, the church members voted to become a sanctuary church to help migrants facing deportation. That’s my Christianity.
Christian Protesters Barge Into LGBT-Inclusive Church, Tell Parishioners They’re “Going To Hell” https://t.co/AppicM4O6t
— Broderick Greer (@BroderickGreer) January 28, 2017
Finally, some of my own news to share. I’m changing jobs and exceptionally fortunate to be moving from one charity I love, Christian Aid to another, Stonewall. I’ve also just started tweeting for @SohoGathering, a casual group I’m part of that meets every Thursday night in Soho. Follow me on Twitter @JoeyKnock for more #LGBTQProgress news throughout the week.