Awareness | Posted by Julie Graves on 08/10/2017

On Trump’s Transgender Military Ban

The ban is discriminatory.

The ban is discriminatory.

Historically, changes in military policies have been indicative of broader fights for social change in America. For example, the military’s desegregation in 1948 reflected the Civil Rights movement’s progress made around racial discrimination against African Americans, and the 2011 repeal of “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell,” a policy that banned openly gay citizens from serving in the military, reflected the progress the LGBT movement had made (in fact, gay marriage was legalized soon after). So in the wake of this progress, it was all the more upsetting when Trump declared a ban on transgender people serving in the military last Wednesday.

Though Trump claimed to have consulted with top military officials about this ban, General Joseph Dunford stated that he would not remove transgender people from the …

More >

Feminism | Posted by Farha Khalidi on 07/26/2017

How This Youth Council Is Helping Queer Muslims

Urooj Arshad

Urooj Arshad

Our government has a way of minimizing its destructive influence on the minorities of this nation by convincing us that we’re the problem—that we’re all out to get each other and everyone else—so we lose focus on the systemic oppression inflicted upon us by our highest-ranking officials and start to point fingers at each other, until we reach mutually assured destruction.

Take, for instance, the Muslim and LGBTQ+ communities in the United States. Both of these communities are marginalized in our conservative Christian society, and as such are pitted against each other. Urooj Arshad, founder of the Muslim Youth Leadership Council, told the FBomb that she believes the U.S. government is “bigoted towards the LGBT and Muslim communities, but tries to use the LGBT community as a proxy …

More >

Feminism | Posted by Libby Segal on 02/22/2017

A Mother-Daughter Outing

Credit: Libby Segal

Credit: Libby Segal

I came out to my family at 25 years old. It was 2014, and while the country had made great progress in acceptance in terms of recognizing civil unions, putting more LGBTQ figures on television, and passing pro-gay laws, coming out was still a weighty experience. I was fortunate enough to have recently moved to New York, where there was less stigma and more acceptance for LGBTQ folks than there was on my college campus in Rhode Island or in my hometown of Bethlehem, PA. But even so, I struggled with the coming out process, mostly because I had struggled so hard to come out to myself.

I had never really been worried about what my parents would say or think when I eventually came out, but

More >

Feminism | Posted by Caitlin Templeton on 12/28/2016

I Fall In Love With One’s Soul, Not Their Gender

On being pansexual.

On being pansexual.

When I looked into the eyes of the first woman I ever liked — loved, even — I felt like I finally understood the famous words attributed to Edgar Allan Poe: “the eyes are the window to the soul.” I didn’t just see her, but myself; I saw a reflection of my own soul within hers. It was like a breath of fresh air — or maybe it wasn’t even that. Maybe I was just then breathing for the first time. And, my god, I didn’t even know how I was living before.

But as seemingly simple as my realization for my love for her was, realizing that those feelings meant I was also pansexual wasn’t easy at all. I didn’t wake up one day and decide, …

More >

Feminism | Posted by Crystal O on 08/22/2016

How I Fit Into Mainstream Pride Events As A Queer Black Woman

Pride

I realized that I wasn’t straight when I was about 15 years old. Soon after, I got involved with my high school’s Gay-Straight Alliance. During one of the club’s meetings, the steering committee chair of an organization called PFLAG (Parents, Friends, and Families of Lesbians of Gays) joined us as a guest speaker. That day proved to be a pivotal one for me. After the committee chair spoke, I attended a PFLAG meeting and became a member of their youth group: Rainbow Youth and Allies. I am now proud to facilitate this group.

Actually coming out, however, was a process that started after I had begun attending PFLAG. I was fairly open about my sexuality at school and was not shy to stand up for myself and for the …

More >

Feminism | Posted by Lauren D on 06/30/2016

Being An Ally Is About More Than Your Own Identity

It’s about action, too.

In the wake of the Orlando mass shooting and throughout this month of LGBTQPIA+ pride, I have seen an immense presence of online support and love for the LGBTQPIA+ community — support for which I am incredibly grateful. But I have also seen a number of perhaps well-intended, yet ultimately offensive, comments from self-identified “allies” — the majority of whom are apparently white, cisgender, or heterosexual/heteromantic. In this time of both tragedy and pride, it seems useful to discuss what it really means to be an ally.

Allyship is not just an identity — it requires action. An ally to the the LGBTQPIA+ community is someone who uses their cishet privilege to lift up the silenced voices in that community. Allies are allies because they do …

More >

Feminism | Posted by David G on 06/14/2016

What The Orlando Shooting Means To Me As A Queer Teen

#Orlando

On Sunday night, I couldn’t cry. I didn’t know how to — it was as if every resource I had to deal with deep, inescapable grief had been disabled. I felt short-circuited, wired and rewired out of my current plane of existence.

On Monday, I started breaking down.

A part of me feels like I’m infringing upon other people’s story. I’m not from Orlando and didn’t lose anyone, so I can’t possibly understand what my Orlando counterparts, those who are and did, are going through. And yet on Monday, I began to feel the grief someone feels when they lose a loved one: the void of anger and anguish and the thick fog of confusion. This complex entanglement of emotions weaved together, like vines climbing and suffocating a wall, …

More >

Feminism | Posted by Tanvi S on 09/8/2014

The LGBTQ Movement Is About More Than Marriage Equality

Many activists have brought attention to the fact that the LGBTQ movement – or at least the public perception of it is — is too focused on marriage. It seems that the media has almost made the entire social movement synonymous with same-sex marriage, which distracts from the vast array of other problems that the LGBTQ community faces. There are plenty of other issues that this movement addresses and the media must do a better job of focusing on those fights as well.

For example, violence against trans and queer people (especially trans and queer people of color) is on the rise. Homelessness and poverty disproportionately affect the LGBTQ community for a variety of reasons including employment discrimination, lack of health care, and housing discrimination. LGBTQ youth are bullied in …

More >