The Wonderful World of Wanzie: Welcome Spring!

By : Michael Wanzie
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We are now living in a time when we, as citizens and indeed the elected leaders of the United States of America, seem to be constantly at odds with another. Not merely over policies or how best to solve a problem, overcome adversity or deal with a crisis; rather over whether or not the policy was ever really a policy to begin with and whether or not the problem, adversity or crisis actually exists or ever existed.

It is impossible to make any real progress debating solutions when our time is instead spent debating what is fact and what is fiction; what is news and what is fantasy. Never in my lifetime have I witnessed such a crippling of the ability of our government, indeed the ability of our nation as a whole, to achieve consensus on any matter because we the people can’t even agree on the validity or truthfulness of said matter. This my friends will go down in history as the most significant and most harmful blow to our democracy brought about by the election of Donald J. tRump as president.

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Trump says DOJ, FBI to review the Jussie Smollett case

By : Mariah Cooper Of The Washington Blade, Courtesy Of The National LGBT Media Association
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President Donald Trump tweeted on March 28 that the U.S. Department of Justice and FBI will review the “outrageous” Jussie Smollett case after prosecutors dropped 16 counts of disorderly conduct against the “Empire” actor.

“FBI & DOJ to review the outrageous Jussie Smollett case in Chicago. It is an embarrassment to our Nation!” Trump tweeted.

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House votes to rebuke Trump’s trans military ban

By : Chris Johnson Of The Washington Blade, Courtesy Of The National LGBT Media Association
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The U.S. House voted March 28 to rebuke President Trump’s transgender military ban by approving a non-binding resolution with bipartisan support.

The resolution, which was introduced by Rep. Joseph Kennedy III (D-Mass.), was approved by a vote of 238-185 after an hour of debate on the House floor in which lawmakers denounced the Trump administration’s policy as discriminatory.

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Jair Bolsonaro visits White House, reiterates opposition to LGBTI rights

By : Michael K. Lavers Of The Washington Blade, Courtesy Of The National LGBT Media Association
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Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro on March 19 reiterated his opposition to LGBTI rights when he spoke alongside President Trump during a press conference in the White House Rose Garden.

Bolsonaro, speaking through a translator, stressed his government’s “respect of traditional family values” and opposition to “gender identity.” Bolsonaro in his remarks also praised Trump.

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Court rules Trump admin ‘incorrect’ in moving forward with trans military ban

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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In a development that could complicate the implementation of the transgender military ban, a federal judge in D.C. ruled the Trump administration is “incorrect” in determining no legal impediment remains in place barring enforcement of the policy.

U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly, a Clinton appointee, issued a notice on March 19 asserting her injunction remains in place for the time being despite an order from the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals vacating the decision.

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Buttigieg slams Pence as ‘cheerleader of the porn star presidency’

By : Chris Johnson of The Washington Blade, Courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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Openly gay, 2020 presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg slammed his fellow Hoosier Vice President Mike Pence, who’s notorious for his anti-LGBT record, as a “cheerleader of the porn star presidency.”

Buttigieg made the comments March 10 during a CNN town hall event at the South by Southwest tech conference in Austin in response to a question from host Jake Tapper on whether Pence would be better or worse than President Trump.

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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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Samira Obeid: Poet and Community Advocate

By : Hannah Willard
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Hannah Willard

As an advocate, poet and friend, Sam Obeid embodies a quintessential feminist manifesto: “the personal is political.”

Sam weaves together her work and her life into a seamless tapestry of social justice. She oversees the ANYTOWN program of Community Tampa Bay, a youth leadership and diversity residential program. She is a celebrated poet and has delivered acclaimed spoken word performances worldwide. Recently, Sam became an involuntary spokesperson for our country’s broken immigration system, as she was caught in the crosshairs of Trump’s bigotry and forced to leave the country.

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Trump admin turns to Supreme Court to ban trans people from military

By : CHRIS JOHNSON OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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With court orders in place from four judges barring the U.S. military from enacting President Trump’s transgender ban, the Trump administration is seeking recourse from the U.S. Supreme Court to allow the policy to go into effect.

U.S. Solicitor General Neil Francisco submitted petitions Nov. 23 for certiorari in three cases calling on the court to review the litigation and reverse the preliminary injunctions enjoining enforcement of Trump’s transgender ban.

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House GOP urges Trump to drop LGBT protections in NAFTA update

By : CHRIS JOHNSON OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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A group of nearly 40 House Republicans are calling on President Trump to drop from the updated U.S. trade proposal with Mexico and Canada a provision encouraging countries to adopt policies barring anti-LGBT discrimination in the workforce, throwing ratification of the deal in question.

In a letter dated Nov. 16, lawmakers led by Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-Colo.) say they’re “deeply concerned” by the proposed LGBT requirements in the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, a renegotiation of the 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement initiated by President Trump. An article in Politico Nov. 16 highlighted the letter.

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Lesbian former MMA fighter Sharice Davids elected to Congress in Kansas

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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A lesbian attorney in Kansas who formerly was a mixed martial arts fighter has won election to the U.S. House, setting her up to become one of the first female Native Americans to serve in Congress.

MSNBC declared Davids, a Democrat, won over her Republican incumbent Rep. Kevin Yoder (R-Kansas), a Trump ally, at 8 pm local time on Nov 6.

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Trump names openly gay judicial nominee — bringing total to 2

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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President Trump has nominated to the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals an openly gay federal prosecutor tasked with enforcing organized crime and drug laws, doubling the number of his out judicial nominees.

The White House announced Trump’s nomination of Patrick Bumatay to the Ninth Circuit last week as part of a group of 18 nominees for judgeships as well as appointments as U.S. attorneys and U.S. marshals. Log Cabin Republicans confirmed to the Washington Blade on Oct. 15  Bumatay is openly gay.

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