A toast and a stumble through 2016, the year we will never forget

By : Billy Manes and Jeremy Williams
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We could go on and on about our gripes with the letter “P” this year, generally circulating around two terms: “Pulse” and “Politics.” So, indeed, that’s what we’ll do. Though we may have seen some wonderful developments in the year that God forgot, for the most part, many of us are grabbing at straws, trying to make sense of how it is that we descended so deeply, that we became the eye of the target of absolute terror.

Some may say that 2016 was the backlash for all of the gifts we were given by 2015, most notably marriage equality in both state and nation. Others might opine that there is something else going on here with the media, with conspiracies, with a new Cold War. We can’t be certain, but we certainly have each other’s backs, as has been proven by the many acts of kindness that rose up to meet the beast of an election year gone awry and a local community cut to its core. We are not a weak people; we have seen trouble before. But this year owns a special place in our hearts, one we hope that heals over without forgetting those who suffered and those who commandeered offenses that none of us could have been prepared for.

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Local leaders weigh in on the way we were and the way we will be

By : Billy Manes
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Dumbfounded. Knocked out. Afraid. Broken. These are just a few of the things that many of us are feeling in the wake of Donald Trump’s historic rise to presidential power on Nov. 8.

If you’re anything like us, you have a lot of questions. You may have even been harassed already. We reached out to some of our best and brightest for answers, options, hope. And they provided just that. We’re not done yet. And so we rise. Here are some words from our friends. Stay strong.

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Poe to show?: Politico reports that former state Democratic chair Bob Poe is considering a congressional run

By : Billy Manes
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29dd5d2Because political season is officially upon us, we shouldn’t feel surprised when politicos we know start popping up in news feeds as newborn contenders. Bob Poe, former chairman of the Florida Democratic Party and (more recently) fundraising friend of former Gov. Charlie Crist, is the latest to stick his wet finger in the wind to see if he’s going to throw his hat in the 10th Congressional District ring, according to Politico. We reached out to Poe, and he said that the notion of his candidacy is “premature,” though we all know that’s code for “independent polling.” A longtime champion of LGBT rights (along with husband Kenneth), Poe would clearly make some noise in a crowding field. He would also smile a lot. Poe likes to smile. From Marc Caputo at Politico:

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Guest Column: Our community suffered major losses

By : Bob Poe
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Bob Poe

Bob Poe

We lost.And that sucks.

Not only did we lose the all-important races for governor and attorney general on a statewide basis, butlocally we lost LGBT family member Joe Saunders and staunch allies Linda Stewart, Karen Castor Dentel and Mike Clelland in the state legislature.

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“Haven’t Seen You in Awhile” party hosted by Bob Poe and Ken Brown

By : Susan Clary
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Bob Poe and Ken Brown hosted a “Haven’t Seen You in Awhile!” party at their breathtaking condo in The Vue downtown Oct. 15.

The couple recently returned to Orlando following a summer in L.A. Special guest for the evening? Former Gov. Charlie Crist, who is considering a run for his old seat in 2014.

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