Emboldened by Trump victory, new Florida legislature aims rightward

By : Billy Manes
Comments: 1

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Though early reports of Florida’s arriving House of Representatives and Senate seem to indicate a kinder, gentler edge to proceedings – including more transparency, less nepotism, fewer spouses on airplanes during official business – at least one Democratic legislator isn’t really convinced. Carlos Guillermo Smith, who was officially elected to represent east Orlando this fall, making him the first Latino LGBTQ house representative to take that office, isn’t convinced.

“I think the Florida legislature is preparing to take a hard right turn,” he says. “They have been unapologetic already.”

Continue Reading >>

Florida advocate fights HIV through social media

By : Wire Report
Comments: 0

SUNRISE, Fla. (AP) – As she’s done hundreds of times, Maria Mejia stepped up to the podium, scanned the audience, took a deep breath and shared her story.

At 18, she learned she was HIV positive. By 28, she had AIDS. Those diagnoses eventually launched her on a mission to raise awareness about HIV prevention and the sometimes harsh realities of living with the virus.

Continue Reading >>

Orlando charities learn from prior mass killings mistakes

By : Wire Report
Comments: 0

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) – In the days after the June 12 attack on the Pulse nightclub, other victims of mass shootings reached out to the survivors and their families to ensure that mistakes made with charity efforts after previous attacks were not repeated.

Anita Busch, whose cousin Micayla Medek was killed with 11 others in a Denver-area theater attack in 2012, said those families had to scrape and claw and still wait months for help.

Continue Reading >>

The gloves come off as the race for District 70 gets closer

By : Jeremy Williams
Comments: 0

ST. PETERSBURG – The candidates are upping their attacks as the Democratic primary for District 70 gets closer.

St. Petersburg business owner, and openly gay candidate, Dan Fiorini has called Tampa Bay area lawyer CJ Czaia out for hiring Theresa “Momma Tee” Lassiter as a campaign consultant.

Continue Reading >>

In the wake of the Pulse massacre, the LGBT community inadvertently intersects with the gun-rights battle

By : Billy Manes
Comments: 0

“This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine. Let it shine, let it shine for the 49,” was just one of the transcendent protest hymns echoing through the lobby outside the Orlando office of U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., on July 11.

While organizers representing the full panoply of Central Florida staged their “#sitinforthe49” – a clear reference to the 49 people gunned down by a semi-automatic rifle in the early hours of June 12 – echoes of unrest from the fringes were everywhere. Members of Black Lives Matter, Planned Parenthood, Equality Florida and Organize Now, among others, assembled peacefully, even mournfully, for a morning of conscientious objection.

Continue Reading >>