Florida’s surgeon general might be fired

By : Wire Report
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Tallahassee (AP) – Dr. John Armstrong’s future as Florida’s Surgeon General is in doubt after the Senate’s Ethics and Election Committee temporarily postponed his confirmation vote for a second time.

Sen. Garrett Richter said March 1 he’ll ask Senate President Andy Gardiner to convene the committee for at least one more meeting. He must approve any committee meetings over session’s final 10 days.

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Changes Coming to St. Pete Pride?

By : Aaron Drake
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The tumult in the community over big changes happening to the St. Petersburg Pride Festival and Parade can simmer down a bit: It appears St. Pete Pride isn’t going anywhere in 2016.

There is no doubt a shift on the horizon, with chatter that Pride is moving the parade and festival to Downtown or possibly the new pier once it is completed, which is estimated for fall 2018. And there’s a possibility St. Pete might be building to become a candidate to host World Pride in the near future, which will take a literal village (or city) to make happen.

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Partners in prevention: HIV prevention drugs available in more Central Florida locations

By : Jamie Hyman
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Central Floridians interested in HIV prevention medications now have several options.

Planned Parenthood announced at the end of 2015 that they offer both PrEP and PEP (pre- and post-exposure prophylaxis) at local clinics.

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Kinky Boots event brings LGBT youth behind the curtain

By : Jamie Hyman
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About 20 of Central Florida’s LGBT youth will get an opportunity to learn about what goes into a Broadway production.

Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts, in partnership with Zebra Coalition, Kinky Boots and the True Colors Foundation is hosting the event, which is an afternoon of educational speakers followed by a dinner, performance and then a Q&A with the Kinky Boots cast.

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Screened Out – The Witch

By : Stephen Miller
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Ralph Ineson, Anya Taylor-Joy, Kate Dickie, Harvey Scrimshaw

It’s easy to sense the research and commitment that went into the horror movie The Witch, the debut full-length by NYC stage talent and shorts director Robert Eggers. The flick – set in 17th-century New England – follows a Puritan family thrust out into the wilderness, where they battle evil forces that come from the gnarled woods around them.

Alas, the sum here is more mood than sense. By the end, all the dark foreboding, meticulous academics, commentary on fundamentalism, and self-flagellating religiosity has less witchy magic. It devolves into gory absurdism.

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Some of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia’s anti-gay highlights

By : Wire Report
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Washington (AP) – Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia kept your attention, whether you liked him or not.

He was a big personality who rather enjoyed the spotlight, and he did not often shy from controversy.

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Oscar Predictions and Watermark’s 2016 Oscars Pool!

By : Stephen Miller
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It’s our annual Oscar column – and it’s a doozy! In the comments, you can submit you predictions. We’ll draw a prizewinner from the correct or most correct. You will win SOMETHING!

The 88th Oscar season is all about diversity…or lack thereof. This year, scads of people are viably upset that there was not a single nomination of a minority in actor or director categories.

Is Hollywood the new Great White Way?

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Utah lawmakers postpone vote to make adoption fair for gay couples

By : Wire Report
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GayUtahAbstrSalt Lake City (AP) – Utah lawmakers postponed a vote on a proposal to ensure married gay couples are treated equally as married heterosexual couples in adoptions and foster care placements.

The vote was pushed off Feb. 12 after legislators cited worries about the late hour and concerns that some had about the measure.

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“Separate but equal” marriage license bill moves to Senate floor with bipartisan support

By : Wire Report
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Frankfort, Ky. (AP) – Kentucky lawmakers want to create two marriage license forms, one designed for gay couples and another for straight couples, in a move critics say harks back to the “separate but equal” days of the civil rights movement.

One marriage license form would note the “bride” and “groom” and the other form would note “first party” and “second party.” Bill sponsor Republican Sen. Stephen West of Paris said couples, both gay and straight, could use either form.

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Wedding Bells at Watermark: Mark Badley and Jason Newkirk

By : Samantha Rosenthal
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Mark Badley and Jason Newkirk

Photo by Castaldo Studio

“Mark is wonderful and will go along with all the crazy schemes and everything I come up with – and he’s always there beside me, loving me and supporting me no matter how crazy my little mind can go,” Jason says.

When Jason Newkirk, a writer and office manager for a production company, first met Mark Badley, a pharmacy buyer, he was at a loss for words, which isn’t like Jason, being a person who always has something to say.

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Parents join the conversation at 2016 Orlando Youth Empowerment Summit

By : Adam Manno
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From Tumblr to transgender trends, the leaders, teachers and students who attended the third annual Orlando Youth Empowerment Summit tackled a wide range of topics of interest to modern LGBT youth.

Co-sponsored by the City of Orlando in partnership with GLSEN, the Orlando Youth Alliance, and Zebra Coalition, O-YES is a collaborative workshop and panel-based conference aimed at empowering Orlando’s LGBTQIA+ community through dialogue and discourse.

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New York moves toward conversion therapy ban

By : Wire Report
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New York (AP) – New York is taking steps to stop therapists from trying to change young people’s sexual orientation, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Feb. 6, joining a number of states that have acted against what’s known as gay conversion therapy.

The Democratic governor’s move comes as gay rights advocates have campaigned state by state with mixed results to try to ban a practice that major mental health organizations have repudiated.

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