We look back on 2018, a midterm year for a country that’s just living on a prayer

By : Jeremy Williams and Ryan Williams-Jent
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It’s been two years since we, as a country, entered into the reality that is the Trump Administration. The country feels more divided than ever and the phrases “fake news” and “it’s all a witch hunt” are commonplace.

The violence that seems to define who Americans are these days is also there, particularly in Florida, where there has been no justice for the five transgender women of color who were murdered and yet another mass shooting—this time at a high school in Parkland, Fla.—pulled the focus of the world to our state.

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Pride-banning Ronda Storms loses bid for Florida House

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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BRANDON | Ronda Storms, who led Hillsborough County’s now-defunct ban on the recognition of LGBTQ Pride, lost her bid for House District 59 in Florida’s GOP Primary Aug. 28.

Storms announced March 9 that she would run for the office, having left the public eye in 2012 after losing a property appraiser’s race. The two-term state senator’s anti-LGBTQ ban on pride celebrations in Hillsborough County passed in 2005 and remained in place until 2013.

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Pride-banning Ronda Storms announces bid for Florida House

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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Republican Ronda Storms, who spearheaded Hillsborough County’s now-defunct ban on the recognition of LGBTQ Pride, has announced her candidacy for Florida’s House District 59.

“I’m Ronda Storms,” the two-term state senator and Hillsborough County commissioner announced via social media on March 9. “I want to thank each of you that have stopped [to encourage] me to run for office. After much prayerful consideration, my family and I have decided to step forward and make the personal sacrifice necessary to run… this time, State House, District 59, Republican.”

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Accidental Advocates

By : Steve Blanchard
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Notorious pastor Fred Phelps Sr. died on March 18, sparking mixed reactions from LGBTs and the community at large. His Westboro Baptist Church and his so-called congregation made national news often with its protest of the funerals of AIDS patients, Matthew Shepard and fallen U.S. soldiers.

Phelps and his Topeka-based church had the same message at each appearance: The country was doomed because of its tolerance of homosexuality.

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