Racist and homophobic threats rattle students, faculty at a NC university

By : Wire Report
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ABOVE: Wake Forest University (Photo from Wiki Commons)

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP) | Three months after a set of anonymous, threatening, racist, antisemitic and homophobic emails sent a wave of fear through the sociology department at Wake Forest University, the department chairman says he’s still waiting for university leaders to announce a meaningful response.

The emails to faculty in sociology and two other departments called for a “purge” of minorities and the LGBTQ community. Alarmed by what he deemed white supremacist terrorism, chairman Joseph Soares canceled sociology classes for a week. When they resumed, Wake Forest police officers were stationed outside classrooms and the building itself. Doors normally open were closed and locked. Even a study lounge was locked.

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Tennessee governor signs anti-LGBT adoption bill

By : Wire Report
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) | Tennessee has become the latest state to assure continued taxpayer funding of faith-based foster care and adoption agencies even if those organizations exclude LGBT families and others based on religious beliefs.

Republican Gov. Bill Lee signed the bill Jan. 24 without fanfare or an official announcement, making it the first law to be implemented in Tennessee this year.

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Biden takes swipe at Sanders for accepting Joe Rogan’s support

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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ABOVE: Joe Biden (Photo from CNN/Des Moines Register)

In an increasingly heated Democratic primary just a week before the Iowa caucuses, Joe Biden took a not-so-veiled swipe at Bernie Sanders Jan. 25 for accepting Joe Rogan’s support despite comments from the podcast host condemned as transphobic.

Taking to Twitter, Biden draws on his comments he made as vice president when he called transgender rights “the civil rights issue of our time,” which stands in contrast to the Sanders campaign accepting Rogan’s support.

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Sanders campaign defends accepting Joe Rogan support amid LGBTQ backlash

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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Above: Sen. Bernie Sanders (Photo from CNN/Des Moines Register)

Sen. Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign is defending amid LGBTQ backlash its acceptance of support from podcast host Joe Rogan, who in the past has made comments condemned as transphobic, used anti-gay epithets and jokingly compared a black neighborhood to “Planet of the Apes.”

Briahna Joy Gray, national press secretary for the Sanders campaign, responded to the controversy in a statement to the Washington Blade by emphasizing the need to build a coalition to defeat President Trump in the 2020 election.

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New documentary cloaks anonymous sources in ‘face doubles’

By : Wire Report
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PARK CITY, Utah (AP) | In documentaries, anonymous sources have often been reduced to a shadowy, voice-distorted figure, or worse, a pixelated blur. But a new documentary that premiered at the Sundance Film Festival Jan. 26 has, with the aid of advanced digital technology, gone to greater lengths to preserve the secrecy of its sources while still conveying their humanity.

“Welcome to Chechnya,” directed by David France, is about an underground pipeline created to rescue LGBTQ Chechens from the Russian republic where the government has for several years waged a crackdown on gays. In the predominantly Muslim region in southern Russia ruled by strongman Ramzan Kadyrov, LGBTQ Chechens have been detained, tortured and killed.

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Ohio judge apologizes for writing homophobic letters in ’90s

By : Wire Report
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MAUMEE, Ohio (AP) | A judge in northwest Ohio deeply apologized Jan. 23 for a pair of homophobic letters-to-the-editor he wrote to his college newspaper in the 1990s.

Maumee Municipal Court Judge Dan Hazard issued the apology to The Blade, of Toledo, after the newspaper discovered the letters, which are available in the online archive of The Lantern at Ohio State University.

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S. Korean military decides to discharge transgender soldier

By : Wire Report
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ABOVE: Seoul, South Korea. (Photo by Laurie Nevay, from Wikimedia Commons)

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) | South Korea’s military decided Jan. 22 to discharge a soldier who recently undertook gender reassignment surgery, a ruling expected to draw strong criticism from human rights groups.

It was the first time in South Korea that an active-duty member has been referred to a military panel to determine whether to end his or her service due to a sex change operation. South Korea prohibits transgender people from joining the military but has no specific laws on what to do with those who have sex change operations during their time in service.

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Watermark’s 2020 WAVE Awards Final Round – Tampa Bay

By : Watermark Staff
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Our WAVEs 2020 vision has gotten a bit clearer. You nominated, we counted and now we have your Top 3!

The Watermark Awards for Variety and Excellence, or the WAVEs as we call them, recognize the best in Tampa Bay’s LGBTQ community in the areas of activism, service, entertainment and more. In each category, we asked our readers to write in who best represents the values of the LGBTQ community in your area. You have spoken and here is the final round. Now tell us your favorite from the Top 3.

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Watermark’s 2020 WAVE Awards Final Round – VOTE NOW

By : Watermark Staff
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Our WAVEs 2020 vision has gotten a bit clearer. You nominated, we counted and now we have your Top 3!

The Watermark Awards for Variety and Excellence, or the WAVEs as we call them, recognize the best in Central Florida and Tampa Bay’s LGBTQ community in the areas of activism, service, entertainment and more. In each category, we asked our readers to write in who best represents the values of the LGBTQ community in your area. You have spoken and here is the final round. Now tell us your favorite from the Top 3.

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Watermark’s 2020 WAVE Awards Final Round – Central Florida

By : Watermark Staff
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Our WAVEs 2020 vision has gotten a bit clearer. You nominated, we counted and now we have your Top 3!

The Watermark Awards for Variety and Excellence, or the WAVEs as we call them, recognize the best in Central Florida’s LGBTQ community in the areas of activism, service, entertainment and more. In each category, we asked our readers to write in who best represents the values of the LGBTQ community in your area. You have spoken and here is the final round. Now tell us your favorite from the Top 3.

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Discredited conversion therapy banned in conservative Utah

By : Wire Report
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ABOVE: Utah State Capitol, photo public domain.

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) | The discredited practice of conversion therapy for LGBTQ children is now banned in Utah, making it the 19th state and one of the most conservative to prohibit it.

Supporters navigated a winding path to passage and some dissent remains, but barring it in Utah could give a boost to similar efforts in other right-leaning states, said Shannon Minter, legal director for the National Center for Lesbian Rights.

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Warren pledges a Cabinet half-filled with women and non-binary people

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Sen. Elizabeth Warren, photo via Warren’s Facebook page.

With weeks remaining before the Iowa caucuses on Feb. 3, Democratic candidate Elizabeth Warren has come out with a pledge to fill half of her Cabinet as president with women and non-binary people.

Warren made the pledge within a Medium post on Tuesday titled, “Restoring Integrity & Competence to Government After Trump,” which says Trump will “leave behind a government that has been infected by corruption and incompetence” upon his presumed exit from the White House after the 2020 election and outlines her plans.

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