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  • Nic F. Anderson

Queer Catch Up: Friday, Nov. 15, 2019

Welcome to back to YUNGMIGA’s Friday Queer Catch-Up, a weekly post where folks can catch up recent LGBTQ+ news and pop culture.



Researchers from Boston University, Boston Medical Center and Harvard Medical School analyzed data of more than 70,500 cancer survivors to try and determine if there was a difference in quality of care and quality of life due to sexual orientation. Researches found that out of the cancer survivors, 1,931 were self-identified as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or other gender non-conforming person. Researchers found that overall, more lesbian, gay and bisexual women than men faced differences in quality of care. For example, 42.7 percent of lesbian, gay and bisexual women had more difficult time obtaining access to care compared with 28 percent of heterosexual women.

Read more here


Super Happy Fun America (SHFA), the organizers of Boston’s “Straight Pride” event in August, announced they were heading to Dallas, Texas, to support a similar event held by "Protecting Our Next Generations," (PONG) on Saturday, Nov. 16. However, one of the event's speakers announced the event was going to be postponed due to the city asking for a fee.

Read more here


Nikki Araguz Loyd, trans rights activist from Texas, dies at age 44-years-old. Her cause of death is unknown at this time. The Houston Chronicle reported:

"Transgender advocates in Texas praised Loyd for her commitment since the 1990s for supporting transgender rights. She most notably fought a high-profile court battle over the legitimacy of her marriage to a Wharton County firefighter who was killed during a massive fire in 2010. She courted reality TV, became a public speaker and rode in the Houston Gay Pride Parade. She also worked as an entrepreneur in Houston and founded the Transgender National Alliance in 2015.

“Every part of me hurts,” her husband William Loyd said in a Facebook post Thursday. “I can't stop crying. Our kids can't stop crying. The Matriarchal part of our family is just gone and will never be replaced. I'll love you forever TigerLilly. I'll never love again, you were and always will be the love of my life.”

Funeral arrangements are pending."

Read more here


Gov. Brian Kemp announced Angela Duncan will fill a newly-created seat on the Gwinnett County Superior Court bench in Georgia.

It is believed Kemp is the first openly LGBTQ+ judge that Kemp has appointed. Duncan accepted Kemp’s appointment on last week “with tremendous gratitude and appreciation,” according to the AJC, “I will continue to serve the citizens of Gwinnett County with the same dedication that I have served them over the last 15 years as a magistrate judge... I look forward to serving beside those who have been my role models and mentors during my career.”

Read more here


Charles Russell Rhines, 63-year-old a convicted killer, was given a lethal injection at approximately 7.35 p.m. last Monday at the state prison in Sioux Falls. The U.S. Supreme Court denied a last-minute appeal despite claims that jurors on Rhines' case were biased against him for being gay.

This execution is shy of three decades after Rhines killed 22-year-old Donnivan Schaeffer by stabbing him to death in 1992.

Rhines' attorney Shawn Nolan said it was "very sad and profoundly unjust" that Rhines was executed before a court could hear evidence of the alleged gay bias that Rhines claims influenced the jury's decision in sentencing him to die, the Associated Press reported.

Read more here

And here

And here


Indianapolis City-County Council voters elected candidates Alison Brown, Ethan Evans, and Keith Potts to the body, also reelecting Zach Adamson, according to local TV station WTHR. They represented a record number of LGBTQ candidates, reports another station, WRTV.

Advocate reported: "Brown, who identifies as queer, becomes the first woman from the LGBTQ community to serve on the council. The LGBTQ Victory Fund made note of election so many queer candidates in a city that just three years ago served as Vice President Mike Pence’s home base when he was governor of Indiana. “A rainbow wave came crashing into Mike Pence’s backyard Tuesday night, with voters sending three openly LGBTQ candidates to the Indianapolis City-County Council,” said Annise Parker, president and CEO of LGBTQ Victory Fund.“While LGBTQ people continue to be severely underrepresented in the state, these victories will inspire more LGBTQ Hoosiers to consider a run for office and make change in a state that lags much of the country in LGBTQ protections.” Parker made particular note of Brown."

Read more here


Rep. Ilhan Omar (D.-Minn.) quoted a CBS News Tweet of a clip of House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R.-Calif.) saying that the current House of Representatives' legacy was that it had issued more subpoenas then laws passed.

Omar took to Twitter to say otherwise: “We’ve passed hundreds of bills,” Omar responded to McCarthy in her tweet. “To improve the election security your party has compromised, to give LGBTQIA+ people the protections it has denied, and to raise the wages of workers it has ignored.”

Read more here


Vox reported: "The change would apply to a wide range of programs, including those aimed at HIV prevention and treatment for opioid addiction and other substance abuse. But advocates say it appears targeted at the child welfare system, where it could have devastating effects, including keeping children from finding homes and even funneling them into the prison system."

“If you turn away a qualified, loving family that wants to open their home to a child, then you’re not placing a child,” Denise Brogan-Kator, chief policy officer of Family Equality, a group that advocates for the rights of LGBTQ families, told Vox.

Read more here



People are raving online that Frog and Toad are the “ultimate queer relationship goals.”

Read the full article here


Kesha talked about what it's like being bisexual in the music industry and being in an open relationship with her current boyfriend. She told Out magazine: "'He’s a sweetheart, but he also lets me be me,' she said. 'You know, I’ll call him and be like, ‘I had fun tonight, I met a sweet girl and we had a really good time.’ And he’ll say, ‘Cool, babe, I love you.’ It’s so nice. … He knows that I’m just a wild spirit that needs to run free, and that I always come back to the barn for apples from my boy!'"

Read more here


Lesbian pastor Jacinta Nzilani Kilonzo. (Tuko Kenya via YouTube)

Proud lesbian and Kenyan pastor, Jacinta Nzilani, opened up about her attraction to women, a 25-year-long marriage to a man and her new life in an emotional interview with UK radio station. “When I was 16 I realised that I was attracted to women more than men. It is not a habit, it is something that is inside me,” Nzilani said according to Standard Media.

According to Pink News UK, when Nzilani was 18-years-old, she joined a convent and become a nun; however, within the first few days, she was “inappropriately touched by a priest.”

Nzilani left and returned home and was quickly “married off to a man” who was reportedly almost twice her age.

According to Pink News UK Nzilani said, “Marriage was tough and I was not interested in sex. Whenever we got intimate it was by force and I hated it.”

They had three children.

“My husband succumbed to cancer in 2008 after a 25-year marriage and this affected me… My in-laws turned against me and some even beat me up saying I had brought a curse on their family,” she recalled.” Nzilani said according to Standard Media.

Read the full article here

More here


Screenshot of Mikael Chukwuma Owunna's online portfolio "about" section.

Mikael Chukwuma Owunna is an “award-winning queer Nigerian-Swedish artist, photographer, Fulbright Scholar and engineer born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.”

Owunna came out as gay on MySpace in 2005 and he told NPR that many of his Nigeran family members viewed his sexual orientation as “un-African.” Owunna was raised in Pittsburgh, where he still lives, but throughout his life, he has gone home to Nigeria during the holidays. NPR reported: “a priestess performed several forced exorcisms to wwash the 'gay devil' out.’" Owunna’s new book, “Limitless Africans,” challenges the beliefs that LGBTQ+ Africans are “un-African.”

His online portfolio states:

“After enduring years of severe alienation from my Nigerian heritage and a series of exorcisms in Nigeria as well, I started Limit(less) to reclaim my African-ness and queerness on my own terms.

Limit(less) is an award-winning documentary photography project on LGBTQ African immigrants in North America and Europe. Between 2013 and 2017, I shot and documented the stories of over 50 individuals for the project in 10 countries toward my goal of debunking the myth that it is “un-African” to be LGBTQ. In the process I found that there are no safe spaces anywhere for LGBTQ Africans - even in the "liberal" West.

"The project is the first-of-its-kind to document recent LGBTQ African immigrant and asylum seeker experiences across the West; visually expanding conceptions of African-ness and queerness. It is a collaborative response between me and my community to redefine what it means to be an immigrant, African and queer in North America and Europe at this time. To confront, with our self-love and stories, the oppressive narratives that say we should not exist. We are Limitless.”

Listen to NPR’s interview with Mikael Chukwuma Owunna

Learn more about Owunna here