Hillary Clinton urges LGBTQ advocates to keep fighting

By : Wire Report
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(Image from YouTube.)

NEW YORK (AP) — Hillary Clinton told an audience of LGBTQ advocates April 20 that the progress they’ve achieved in recent years may not be secure under the Donald Trump administration, and urged them to keep fighting.

“I know that the election hit a lot of us hard,” Clinton said of her bitter loss to Trump in November. “But I can tell you this: Even when it feels tempting to pull the covers over your head, please keep going.”

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Orlando’s chapter of Gays Against Guns is officially launched

By : David Thomas Moran
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ORLANDO – You might recall a group marching in the Orlando Pride parade last November with a huge rainbow banner that said “Gays Against Guns.” That wasn’t just a one-off parade stunt. GAG Orlando is still at it and recently met at The Center Orlando to layout some gun safety directives for the next few months including joining the League of Women Voters’ Florida Coalition to Prevent Gun Violence.

The Orlando chapter of GAG also plans to step up pressure on gun retailers, lobbyists and elected officials to stop enabling gun violence. The group is part of a national network of GAG chapters focused on ACT UP-inspired direct actions and founded in response to the Pulse hate crime.

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In the wake of the Pulse massacre last summer, millions of dollars rolled in to help the survivors. But where has the money gone?

By : Alma J. Hill
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Every Friday night, for the past 13 years, Josean Garcia had gone out with the same two friends. Garcia, Amanda Alvear and Mercedez Flores had been inseparable since they bonded in middle school. On June 12, after some coordinating, the three made their way to Pulse Nightclub.

They bought a few drinks. Alvarez danced on camera for her Snapchat story, and filmed partygoers early in the night. In her haunting final clip, gunshots rang out, cutting through the music. She mutters lowly, the word “shooting” audible in the chaos. She bites her thumb searching, fumbles, and the feed cuts out.

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A toast and a stumble through 2016, the year we will never forget

By : Billy Manes and Jeremy Williams
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We could go on and on about our gripes with the letter “P” this year, generally circulating around two terms: “Pulse” and “Politics.” So, indeed, that’s what we’ll do. Though we may have seen some wonderful developments in the year that God forgot, for the most part, many of us are grabbing at straws, trying to make sense of how it is that we descended so deeply, that we became the eye of the target of absolute terror.

Some may say that 2016 was the backlash for all of the gifts we were given by 2015, most notably marriage equality in both state and nation. Others might opine that there is something else going on here with the media, with conspiracies, with a new Cold War. We can’t be certain, but we certainly have each other’s backs, as has been proven by the many acts of kindness that rose up to meet the beast of an election year gone awry and a local community cut to its core. We are not a weak people; we have seen trouble before. But this year owns a special place in our hearts, one we hope that heals over without forgetting those who suffered and those who commandeered offenses that none of us could have been prepared for.

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Orlando’s Overheard: Mary expansion, enchanted jungles and they’re with her

By : Anonymous
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Mary gets supersized

The downtown Orlando Hamburger Mary’s is often at capacity with its theme nights such as trivia and Broadway Brunch. The daytime business crowd also seems to flock to Mary’s. So it’s no surprise that Orlando’s location is following in the high heels of the Tampa location with a neighborly expansion. A while ago it was rumored Hamburger Mary’s may open a second location in the I-Drive area, but we weren’t able to receive confirmation.

The former Church Street tavern, and previously the Dessert Lady’s location, will now be home to an expanded version of Hamburger Mary’s called Mary’s Sidebar Café.

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Organización comunitaria local busca exaltar las voces de la comunidad LGBTQ+ y Latinx

By : David Thomas Moran
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Translated by Esteban Rios.

Un grupo recién formado trabaja para promover la intersección a nivel local de las voces y opiniones de las comunidades LGBTQ+ y Latinx a lo largo de toda Florida Central.

Más que nada, QLatinx desea brindar un espacio de sanación para sus miembros. El grupo busca fortalecer a las personas LGBTQ+ y Latinx, así como a sus aliados quienes han resultado sumamente afectados por el crimen de odio cometido en Pulse, para movilizar y apoyarse los unos a los otros a medida que afrontan las secuelas del tiroteo. El grupo ya ha sido noticia reciente al aparecer en la revista The New Yorker.

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Terry DeCarlo to remain GLBT Community Center of Central Florida’s executive director

By : Jeremy Williams
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Terry DeCarlo will be staying on as the executive director for the GLBT Community Center of Central Florida indefinitely, The Center’s Board of Directors announced in a press release July 8.

DeCarlo previously announced his resignation from The Center May 27 after accepting a new position as the regional director for the AIDS Healthcare Foundation in South Florida.

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What Do We Do Now? Moving forward after the terrifying incident at Pulse in Orlando.

By : Dr. David Baker-Hargrove
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On Sunday morning, June 12 about 7 a.m, I walked downstairs to notice I had an unusual amount of notifications on Facebook and an email from The Center’s Board President, Tim Vargas time stamped at 6:30 a.m.: “Dr. Dave, give me a call as soon as you can.”

I don’t even know what time it was when I got there. I got a great parking place, so it must have been early. The rest of the day was a fluid haze. So many people coming to The Center. They came because they needed to connect and there didn’t seem a more appropriate place to go than our Center. The back alley was a parade of vehicles over the next several days of trunks opening and stores and food being taken out. Whenever there is tragedy or death, the food just comes. It’s our attempt to make sense of the unthinkable.

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The Center bursting with donations, volunteers from across country

By : Alex Storer
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The Center was bursting at the seams on June 16.

Four days after the Pulse shooting, The Center President Tim Vargas still couldn’t find enough room for all the supplies donated — or all the volunteers, for that matter. A back room had food and supplies stacked nearly to the ceiling. The Center has been coordinating the community response to the Pulse shooting by accepting food and water donations and transporting them to counselors, first responders and the victims’ families. The Center has also helped raise more than $500,000 to help pay the medical bills of surviving victims.

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The Center to host “Welcome to the Jungle” party June 17

By : Alex Storer
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WelcometotheJunglePartyPosterBreak out your Tarzan costume.

Instead of a “Black and White Gala,” The GLBT Center of Central Florida will host a “Welcome to the Jungle” party this year on June 17 at the Orlando History Museum.

The event, which will be headlined by former Pussycat doll J Sutta, includes a silent auction, gambling, dancing, food, drink, stilt-walkers and free professional body-painters.

The Center, whose mission is “to promote and empower the GLBT community and its allies through information, education, advocacy and support,” is attempting something of a rebranding, according to board member Rob Domenico.

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The GLBT Center is looking for a new leader

By : Jamie Hyman
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After a little more than a year and a half as executive director of The Center, Terry DeCarlo is resigning.

DeCarlo migrated to Orlando from South Florida, where he was Director of Marketing, Public Relations and Events at Broward House for eight years. He was hired to head The Center in October of 2014. Once his resignation becomes effective June 24, DeCarlo will return to South Florida for his new role as regional director for the AIDS Healthcare Foundation.

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Panasonic a pioneer for LGBT rights in Japan

By : Wire Report
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TOKYO (AP) – For decades, Panasonic Corp. has shaped Japanese corporate tradition – be it morning exercise routines or lifetime employment. But don’t hold your breath waiting for other Asian businesses to emulate its latest policy announcement: Recognizing same-sex partnerships.

Much of Asia remains far behind the West in such attitudes. Panasonic’s move is rare, although bold, and seems unlikely to herald a sea change.

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