DOD unveils plan to initiate Trump transgender policy on April 12

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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With court orders barring President Trump from enforcing his transgender military ban out of the way, the Defense Department late March 12 unveiled its plan to make the policy a reality, announcing it would begin April 12.

15-page memo signed by David Norquirst, who’s performing the duties of deputy secretary of defense, spells out the timeline, procedures and potential exemptions for implementing the plan ordered by Trump and created by former Defense Secretary James Mattis.

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Anti-LGBT petitions before Supreme Court could make for dire term

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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A number of anti-LGBT petitions are before the U.S. Supreme Court, although legal experts say adjudication of these cases — if justices agree to take them up — may not be as bad as some observers fear.

With one exception, each of the petitions before the court calls for a rollback of LGBT rights or a reversal of decisions from lower courts affirming LGBT rights within those jurisdictions.

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LGBT History Project: Willyce Kim wrote her own story

By : Jason Villemez, SPECIAL TO WATERMARK FROM THE LGBT HISTORY PROJECT
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ABOVE: A selection of Willyce Kim’s books. Photo: Jason Villemez

Willyce Kim is the first Asian-American lesbian writer to be published in the U.S. She spent her childhood years in Hawaii and California, and graduated from San Francisco College for Women in 1968. Kim was influenced by musicians such as Bob Dylan and Joan Baez and writers including Adrienne Rich and Diane Di Prima.

She self-published her first poetry chapbook, “Curtains of Light,” with her sister in 1970 and soon after she began working with the Women’s Press Collective in Oakland. As a member of the collective, she published works, took photographs and traveled the country to distribute literature and give readings at colleges, bookstores and women’s bars. In the ’70s and ’80s, she published three poetry collections, two novels, and contributed to literary magazines including The Furies, Phoenix Rising, and Conditions.

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Valdez rejects anti-trans bathroom bill as ‘fear-mongering’ in Texas debate

By : Chris Johnson OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Lesbian candidate for Texas governor Lupe Valdez rejected anti-transgender bathroom legislation — once a priority for anti-LGBT Gov. Greg Abbott — as “fear-mongering” in a debate Friday night with her opponent.

During the debate at the Lyndon B. Johnson Presidential Library in Austin, KSAT-TV anchor Steve Spriester asked Abbott whether he’d sign a bill barring transgender people from using the restroom consistent with their gender identity.

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Milo Yiannopoulos’ ‘Free Speech’ rally flops at UC Berkeley

By : MARIAH COOPER OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Milo Yiannopoulos’ “Free Speech” rally at the University of California, Berkeley on Sunday culminated in the former senior Breitbart editor being escorted away by police after a 20-minute appearance.

The rally took place on the campus’ famed Sproul Plaza, known for being a hotbed of student protests during the Free Speech Movement of the 1960s. Yiannopoulos appeared to take selfies with fans, sign copies of his book and led the crowd of about 150 people in a rendition of the national anthem.

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Berkeley killing renews debate over gender pronouns

By : Wire Report
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BERKELEY, Calif. (AP)- Pablo Gomez Jr. was a University of California, Berkeley, senior majoring in Latino studies and a prominent campus activist when authorities say he stabbed to death a popular elementary-school teacher.

Soon, the crime that police described as “very brutal and unusual” in a city that reported just two homicides last year was sucked up into the debate over gender identity when it was reported that Gomez preferred to be called “they” rather than “he.”

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