Utah soccer star overcomes challenges as openly gay athlete

By : wire report
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ABOVE: Carly Nelson. Photo by Steve C. Wilson via University of Utah Women’s Soccer’s Facebook page.

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) | Carly Nelson loves everything about her goalkeeper’s job description for the Utah women’s soccer team, including the pressure of keeping opponents from scoring, having a unique view of the field and directing the defenders in front of her. “And, of course,” she said, “wearing the different colors.”

Nelson has worn distinctive goalie uniforms of gray, pink, blue and yellow at various times in her Ute career. Those color choices are her personal expressions, just as her parents once believed about her sexual orientation.

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Out NFL bisexual Ryan Russell just wants to play

By : Karen Ocamb of the Los Angeles Blade, Courtesy of the Natioan LGBT Media Association
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ABOVE: Ryan Russell, photo courtesy Russell.

LOS ANGELES | It was a long two days. NFL free agent Ryan Russell came out twice in a personal column on ESPN on Aug. 29 and during the subsequent whirlwind of press—first as a bisexual and second as a defensive end who writes poetry and romance stories.

“My primary objective right now is football and getting back in the NFL and playing. And I think the biggest way that I could also kind of help be a more visible figure in professional football, for other LGBT players, is to be on the field,” Russell who continues to train at the NFL’s Exos sports program in Carson, tells the Blade. “I know that there’s an opportunity for me, and I know that my best years of playing are ahead of me and I can’t wait to show the world what I can do.”

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Hong Kong turmoil raises questions about 2022 Gay Games

By : Lou Chibbaro Jr. of The Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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ABOVE: Recent unrest in Hong Kong has some wondering about viability of the Gay Games there in 2022. (Photo by Studio Incendo via Flickr)

The escalating violent street clashes between Hong Kong’s pro-democracy movement protesters and local authorities taking orders from China that have taken place each week since June have raised questions about whether Hong Kong can remain a viable host city for the 2022 Gay Games.

In 2017, the Federation of Gay Games, which organizes the quadrennial international LGBT sports event that attracts as many as 15,000 athletes and thousands more spectators, selected Hong Kong as the host city for the 2022 Gay Games.

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Education Dept. agrees to take up anti-trans complaint from girl athletes

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Betsy DeVos, Washington Blade photo by Michael Key.

The Trump administration has agreed to investigate a complaint from an anti-LGBT legal group contending a Connecticut’s school trans-inclusive policy has “denied equal athletic benefits and opportunities to girls.”

The complaint was filed by Alliance Defending Freedom on behalf of three teen athletes and accepted by the Department of Education Wednesday at a time when opponents of LGBT non-discrimination measures are stoking fears over men playing in women’s sports to derail those efforts.

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Megan Rapinoe gives special birthday shoutout to brother after World Cup win

By : Mariah Cooper of the Washington Blade, Courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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ABOVE: Megan Rapinoe at the World Cup. Photo courtesy Rapinoe’s Facebook page.

Megan Rapinoe took the time to give her brother Brian Rapinoe a birthday shout out right after leading the U.S. Women’s National Team to its second straight World Cup win.

While giving a post-game interview to Fox News, Rapinoe directly addressed her brother.

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NHL expands engagement efforts including Pride participation

By : Kevin Majoros OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Ally Braden Holtby at the Capital Pride parade June 8. Washington Blade photo by Kevin Majoros.

Hockey is for Everyone, the National Hockey League’s (NHL) cultural campaign, has evolved in a significant way over the past year. Originally an annual one-month campaign in February, the NHL shifted their strategy to a year-round community program for long-term engagement.

Hockey is for Everyone uses the game of hockey and the League’s global influence to drive positive social change and foster more inclusive communities. NHL stakeholders guide the conversation at the league level and the campaign amplifies what NHL teams are already doing.

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Ally and baseball pro Sean Doolittle wears Pride on his cleats

By : Kevin Majoros OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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When Washington Nationals ace relief pitcher Sean Doolittle travels to away games, he uses his free time to hunt down local, independently owned bookstores. He posts his findings on his Twitter feed to help raise awareness for the oftentimes struggling bookstores.

Small bookstores are one of the many causes locally and nationally that Doolittle has taken under his wing. In mid-May, he sat down with his wife Eireann Dolan and turned his attention to another cause they both advocate for–LGBTQ rights.

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Andy Brennan is the first male Australian pro soccer player to come out as gay

By : Mariah Cooper of the Washington Blade, Courtesy of the Natioan LGBT Media Association
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Andy Brennan is the first male Australian professional soccer player to come out as gay.

The 26-year-old, who plays forward for the club Green Gully, made the announcement in an Instagram post.

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Fears over men playing in women’s sports dominate Equality Act hearing

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Julie Beck speaks at the House Judiciary Committee against the Equality Act. (Screen capture public domain)

A congressional hearing April 2 on the Equality Act, legislation seeking to prohibit anti-LGBT discrimination in fundamental aspects of life such as employment and housing, quickly got sidetracked into fears over men participating in women’s sports.

The issue became a central focus during the nearly four-hour congressional hearing before the House Judiciary Committee on the Equality Act, which would amend the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to ban anti-LGBT discrimination under federal law.

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Homophobic, racist tweets resurface from Atlanta Braves’ Sean Newcomb, Washington Nationals’ Trea Turner

By : Jeremy Brener
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Atlanta Braves pitcher Sean Newcomb and Washington Nationals shortstop Trea Turner had several past homophobic and racist tweets resurfaced by fans July 29, overshadowing successful seasons each player was having.

Newcomb, 25, made national headlines for missing a no-hitter by one out against the Los Angeles Dodgers Sunday.

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Trans coach boosting visibility for girls’ baseball

By : KEVIN MAJOROS OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Ava Benach and daughter Paloma share a love of baseball. (Photo courtesy Ava Benach)

Ava Benach signed up her daughter Paloma to play little league baseball when she was five years old. At the time, she made the erroneous assumption that eventually, Paloma would have to switch to softball.

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Rejected by family, trans soccer player finds support from teammates

By : KEVIN MAJOROS OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Reeves Gift found himself homeless after coming out as trans to his parents. Now, he’s headed to film school at USC. (Washington Blade photo by Kevin Majoros)

Last fall, Reeves Gift was living a double life.

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