Welcome back to yungmiga’s Queer Catch Up, a weekly post where folks can catch up recent queer news and pop culture.
Federal judge overturns ObamaCare transgender protections, ruling that the 2016 policy is a religious freedom violation of Christian providers. The Hill reported: “Judge Reed O’Connor in the Northern District of Texas vacated an Obama-era regulation that prohibited insurers and providers who receive federal money from denying treatment or coverage to anyone based on sex, gender identity or termination of pregnancy.
"It also required doctors and hospitals to provide “medically necessary” services to transgender individuals as long as those services were the same ones provided to other patients. O’Connor, the same judge who last year ruled that the entire Affordable Care Act is unconstitutional, said the rule violates the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. His ruling is likely to be appealed.”
A Georgia school district reverses transgender-friendly bathroom policy after their board members, employees and students received death threats. Board of Education for Pickens County School released a press release that stated:
"There have been many serious safety concerns raised in the past few days. School board members, staff, and students have been threatened due to the administration’s implementation of Adams vs. St. John’s County School District. There have been death threats, student harassment, and vandalism of school property. The District understands and acknowledges that it has the responsibility to protect its staff and students. However, the District has concerns that it may not be able to meet these recently increased demands. Therefore, the District shall return to bathroom procedures in place at the beginning of the 2019-2020 school year until it can consult with law enforcement and other safety professionals so that these concerns may be addressed.”
Wisconsin woman was fired from restaurant for refusing to serve transphobic customers. Brittany Spencer was working at Fat Joe’s Bar & Grill in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, as a server when one of the tables she was waiting began to make transphobic comments to her. KATC reported: “‘They were asking me if I thought it was disgusting and wrong and why we would let someone like that into the establishment," Spencer said. "To which I answered, no, I do not agree with that and walked away.’According to ownership at Fat Joe's, both groups are regulars at the bar. Spencer says she went to her manager to ask if someone else could serve the table because she didn't feel comfortable.‘[My manager] essentially told me to suck it up or go home,’ Spencer said. ‘To which I said, OK. I will leave.’”
Photo of BB Hill.
Another transgender woman was murdered, this time in Kansas City. The suspect waited at scene to be arrested by authorities. Newsweek reported: “Brianna "BB" Hill was shot and killed at 11:30 a.m. local time on Monday. Hill was the second transgender person murdered in the Kansas City area this year. Her death is estimated to be the 21st such killing nationwide. Police have not reported a motive for the murder nor released the suspect's name.”
Ugandan LGBTQ+ activist Brian Wasswa is killed on Oct. 5, one day after they were attacked in their home. NBC reports: “The death of Wasswa, who was gay and gender-nonconforming, comes as human rights advocates have been sounding the alarm that the Ugandan government is ramping up pressure on the country’s LGBTQ community by threatening to reconsider the infamous 2014 “Kill the Gays” bill that increased the penalty for homosexuality from life in prison to death.”
Comcast executive sues the company alleging he was discriminated against for being gay. NBC reports: “A senior executive at Comcast Corp. alleges that during his 18-year tenure at the company, he was routinely discriminated against because of his sexual orientation, despite serving as a public face for the media giant’s diversity efforts.
In a 45-page federal lawsuit filed last week, Klayton Fennell, the company’s senior vice president of government affairs, claims that he was denied equal pay, passed over for promotions and called a derogatory name by an unnamed colleague due to his sexuality. He also alleges that he was retaliated against after he filed a discrimination complaint against the company last year with the Philadelphia Commission on Human Relations and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.”
Tanning salons in cities across the United States seem to cluster in neighborhoods with a higher gay and bisexual male population, suggesting that it “might be one reason for higher skin cancer rates among sexual minority men,” Reuters reported.
More than one dozen prison employees are under investigation after being accused of mocking transgender inmates on Facebook groups such as purposely using incorrect pronouns and and transphobic language on posts, CNN reported.
Pink News reported that homophobia is increasing among young people in the UK, with internet hate being the one to blame. Pink News reported: “A new report has shown that homophobia is on the rise among young people, with one in four 18-24 year olds believing being LGBT+ is “immoral or against their beliefs”, higher than any other age group. According to the Hate Crime Report 2019, by LGBT+ anti-violence charity Galop, young people are showing increasingly polarised views about LGBT+ people.”
Frank Ocean Launched Queer Club Night in New York named “PrEP+” to pay homage to “what could have been of the 1980s NYC club scene” if there were HIV preventing drugs then. There are mixed reviews.
Los Angeles Blade photo by Daniel Sliwa
Protesters interrupt CNN-Human Rights Campaign town hall to highlight the dangers black transgender women face. Protesters held up a transgender pride flags with the words "we are dying" written on it and shouted: “Trans people are dying!” and "Do something!"
Screenshot from the app.
A new "DNA app" is falsely claiming that it can tell how gay someone is.
A developer using the name Joel Bellenson, allegedly an employee for Insolent AI, created and put out a DNA app which is supposed to tell you how gay someone is using a study published earlier this year. However, the app can't do this because there is no one "gay gene."