Coronavirus Updates: Central Florida and Tampa Bay

By : Watermark Staff
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COVID-19, a new coronavirus, is dominating news coverage and social media these days, and with information changing and updating rapidly we want to make sure the local LGBTQ community is keeping up on the most up-to-date information when it comes to medical recommendations, organizational resources and business closures.

Below are links to the information we have, as well as some resources to keep an eye on. Please check back frequently as information is constantly updating and changing. Also, be sure to check in on those close to you who are most vulnerable to the coronavirus.

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03.05.20 Central Florida Bureau Chief’s Desk

By : Jeremy Williams
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I saw myself in Pete Buttigieg. I know that some people had concerns with him, and he was by no means the perfect candidate, but it is not something I can say for any other presidential candidate in the current presidential race, or any presidential race I have voted in before.

Since Mayor Pete made his historical announcement that he would run to be the next president of the United States I have had my eyes — along with my support and vote — locked on him. I like his calm, cool and collected manner. He doesn’t take a stage yelling and waving his arms around frantically. He doesn’t belittle and demean anyone, unlike the current Commander-in-Chief. Pete is smart, articulate and is well prepared every time he takes a debate or town hall stage.

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Gabbard ignores LGBTQ survey questions from Human Rights Campaign

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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ABOVE: Tulsi Gabbard (Photo from Michael Key of the Washington Blade)

Seven current candidates for the Democratic presidential nomination were the among the respondents to an LGBTQ survey the nation’s leading LGBTQ group unveiled Feb. 24, but Tulsi Gabbard — who has been criticized for having an anti-LGBTQ past — wasn’t among them.

The seven current candidates who responded — Joseph Biden, Michael Bloomberg, Pete Buttigieg, Amy Klobuchar, Bernie Sanders, Tom Steyer and Elizabeth Warren — responded affirmatively to each of HRC’s questions on LGBTQ issues, including whether they support the Equality Act, oppose President Trump’s transgender military ban and will commit to tackling anti-trans violence.

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Spring Arts Guide 2020

By : Dylan Todd
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Let’s spring out for the arts in 2020 with Watermark’s annual Spring Arts Guide.

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Buttigieg to 9-year-old seeking advice on coming out: ‘You seem pretty strong’

By : Chris Johnson of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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Pete Buttigieg gives youth advice on coming out at campaign rally in Denver (Screenshot via Twitter)

When a 9-year-old boy asked Pete Buttigieg on stage at a campaign rally in Denver Feb. 23 for advice on having the bravery to come out, the gay presidential hopeful initially didn’t have much to offer, but said he was very impressed.

“I don’t think you need a lot of advice from me on bravery,” Buttigieg said. “You seem pretty strong.”

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Mormon-owned BYU eases rules on ‘homosexual behavior’

By : Wire Report
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ABOVE: BYU, photo via BYU’s Facebook page.

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) | Brigham Young University in Utah has revised its strict code of conduct to strip a rule that banned any behavior that reflected “homosexual feelings,” which LGBTQ students and their allies felt created an unfair double standard not imposed on heterosexual couples.

The university is owned by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which teaches its members that being gay isn’t a sin, but engaging in same-sex intimacy is.

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U.S. medical schools boost LGBTQ students, doctor training

By : Wire Report
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ABOVE: LGBTQ Outreach and Engagement at Harvard Medical School (Photo from website)

Aliya Feroe recalls the flustered OB-GYN who referred her to another physician after learning she identified as queer. For Rhi Ledgerwood, who was designated female at birth, identifies as trans and doesn’t have sex with men, it was a doctor advising about condoms and pregnancy prevention. For Tim Keyes, who came out as gay at age 17, it’s when doctors automatically assumed he sleeps with women.

Ask any LGBTQ patient about awkward doctor visits and chances are they’ll have a story to tell.

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The 49 Fund is accepting applications for 4th annual scholarships

By : Samantha Neely
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ABOVE: Barry Miller (second from L) with several of The 49 Fund scholarship recipients at Orlando City Hall in 2019. (Photo by Jeremy Williams)

ORLANDO | The 49 Fund, an initiative at Central Florida Foundation, is accepting applications for its fourth annual scholarship awards to honor those lost in the Pulse tragedy.

The fund will award up to 10 local LGBTQ students with a $4,900 scholarship to help pay for college tuition.

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Sony reportedly planning to introduce bisexual ‘Spider-Man’ in next movie

By : John Paul King of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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ABOVE: Andrew Garfield as Spider-Man (Image courtesy Sony Pictures)

Sony Pictures is making plans for Spider-Man to come swinging back onto the screen soon – and a rumor has emerged that they want him to be bisexual.

According to a report from geek fansite We Got This Covered, the entertainment giant is looking to develop their return to the superhero franchise as a live-action movie in the vein of 2018’s “Into the Spider-Verse,” the Oscar-winning animated film featuring multiple versions of the superhero who are brought together from their respective dimensions to join forces against an enemy seeking to destroy them all.

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Watermark’s Most Eligible Singles 2020: Amy Dalzell

By : Ryan Williams-Jent
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AGE: 47

BORN IN: Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

IDENTIFIES AS: Lesbian female

PRONOUNS: She/Her/Hers

SIGN: Cancer

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Hundreds of LGBTQ advocates lobby lawmakers for protections

By : Wire Report
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Above: Equality Virginia and partners (Photo from Twitter)

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) | The day after hundreds lobbied lawmakers on behalf of LGBTQ rights during Equality Virginia’s Day of Action, two significant bills advanced in the General Assembly to further protections for the state’s LGBTQ residents.

The House passed a bill from Del. Mark Levine, D-Alexandria, Feb. 5 to prohibit discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity in employment, housing, insurance and banking.

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Watermark’s 2020 WAVE Awards Final Round – Tampa Bay

By : Watermark Staff
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Our WAVEs 2020 vision has gotten a bit clearer. You nominated, we counted and now we have your Top 3!

The Watermark Awards for Variety and Excellence, or the WAVEs as we call them, recognize the best in Tampa Bay’s LGBTQ community in the areas of activism, service, entertainment and more. In each category, we asked our readers to write in who best represents the values of the LGBTQ community in your area. You have spoken and here is the final round. Now tell us your favorite from the Top 3.

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