‘American Idol’ finalist claims she ‘chose’ to be straight

By : Mariah Cooper of the Washington Blade, courtesy of The National Gay Media Association
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“American Idol” runner-up La’Porsha Renae is claiming that being gay or straight is a choice because she was able to choose her sexuality.

Renae began defending herself when a person tweeted that the 23-year-old singer was homophobic.

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Garfield Wikipedia debate forces creator to clarify cat’s gender

By : Mariah Cooper of the Washington Blade, courtesy of The National Gay Media Association
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Garfield is known as the lazy, lasagna-eating orange cat but some fans who thought the cartoon character could also be gender fluid led to a 60-hour Wikipedia edit war.

Podcaster Virgil Texas started the great debate when he cited an interview Garfield creator Jim Davis did for Mental Floss in 2014.

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Positive living: The importance of our straight allies

By : Greg Stemm
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GregStemmHeadshotI have a bumper sticker on the back of my car that reads: “I don’t mind straight people as long as they act gay in public.”

Now before you roll your eyes about my well-known snarky sense of humor, just let me say that bumper sticker was a gift… a gift from a straight ally friend. If you are like me, relationships with the “opposite sex” (hetero v. homo) are rewarding and treasured bonds. I adore my straight friends, and some of them are more “family” than any gay “family” members could ever be. As a community, too, our straight allies have time and time again rushed to our defense, stood solidly against the powers of discrimination and given us comfort and support at times when we’ve needed it most.

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Buzzfeed video asks about weird questions gay couples get

By : Jeremy Williams
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A same-sex relationship is just like a straight relationship in most ways. The butterflies in the stomach, the putting your best face forward and the stressing out about what to wear on the first date are all universal.

One of the more interesting things about being in a same-sex relationship is the response and questions you get from your straight friends, family and even strangers about what it’s like to be gay and dating.

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Watermark Reader Comments: Do we still need gay bars?

By : Jamie Hyman
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Watermark readers have a lot to say about “Raising the Bar,” our in-depth piece from our latest issue discussing the role and relevancy of gay bars now that LGBTs are arguably mainstream.

Read a sample of reader comments from WatermarkOnline.com and Watermark’s Facebook page after the jump: 

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New study suggests there’s no such thing as a straight woman

By : Jeremy Williams
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A truly straight woman might be a mythical creature, like a unicorn or the Loch Ness monster.

A study released Nov. 5 by the University of Essex finds that while lesbians were predominantly more attracted to the female form, most of the women who identified as straight were aroused by both naked men and naked women.

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Rollins’ Lisa Tillmann takes her research and activism to her newest book, ‘In Solidarity’

By : Stephen Miller
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Orlando – Professor and activist Lisa Tillmann is a vital straight ally to Central Florida’s LGBT community. She has made it her life’s work to explore and balance inequality—and her new academic book explores that in intriguing, very readable ways.

Besides chairing Rollins College’s Critical Media and Cultural Studies department, Tillmann has produced films about gay rights, fat shaming, body image and disparities in the U.S. food market. 

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Jason Lambert has used the success of The Hammered Lamb to help LGBT charities

By : Dylan Drobet
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Orlando – Growing up, Jason Lambert had his fair share of nicknames—Lamb Chops, Lambskin, J-Lamb, Lambo, Lambertini. The list goes on and Lambert knew when he opened his restaurant two-and-a-half years ago—The Hammered Lamb in Ivanhoe village—it had to have ‘Lamb’ in the name.

“I was out with some friends and we were discussing several names for the bar when my friend Jordan said, ‘What about The Hammered Lamb?’ and it stuck,” Lambert says. “Right after that I had another friend, Patrick Fatica, design the logo and the branding began.”

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Nathan Lane says straight actors can play gay roles

By : Wire Report
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BEVERLY HILLS, California (AP) – Gay actors shouldn’t have a monopoly on gay roles, award-winning stage and screen actor Nathan Lane said.

Lane, who is gay and has played both straight and gay characters, was asked the question at a TV critics’ meeting Tuesday. He was there to discuss PBS’ presentation of the Broadway play “The Nance,” in which he stars.

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Atlantic City courting gay tourism market

By : Wire Report
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ATLANTIC CITY, New Jersey (AP) – Atlantic City is planning a series of events to attract gay tourists, who are becoming an increasingly important part of the resort’s growth strategy.

Mayor Don Guardian and tourism officials said June 16 the goal is to reinvigorate a once-thriving gay community in the New Jersey resort city.

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6.5.14 Editor’s Desk

By : Steve Blanchard
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It’s June, which means news outlets around the country will cover LGBT Pride events. And as with every year, the uneducated collection of straight individuals who don’t know their civil rights history or understand the importance of equality will be irritated by this attention. And eventually, they will ask the repetitive question: “Why isn’t there a straight pride parade?”

They’ve asked before, so let’s break it down, shall we?

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Overheard Orlando: Paradise lost

By : Anonymous
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In and Out
Paradise Lounge on Mills has changed names yet again. The once-upon-a-time Cactus Club was recently sold and is now known as Orlando Nights. That’s not all. It is said to be marketed as a straight bar. While one bar is going straight, another endeavor, keeping the gays in mind, is opening. Jason Lambert, part-owner of Stardust Lounge, has confirmed that he has signed the lease as of Nov. 1 for the space that used to be Lava Lounge on Orange Avenue. “It’s going to be a neighborhood bar that’s obviously super gay friendly,” says Lambert.  “I don’t want to put a label on it as just a ‘gay bar,’ as I have a lot of straight friends too from working in the downtown bar scene for the last 15 years.” He says that depending on permitting and remodeling, he hopes to open by January at the latest. “Having been part owner of Stardust Lounge for the last 4 1/2 years, I hope to make it similar to that, where everyone – LGBTQ and straight – feel comfortable!”

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