The Advocate reported that the White House would give LGBT Syrian refugees priority for entry given the persecution they face under ISIS. The Advocate writes, according to White House spokesman Josh Earnest, “the administration would instead prioritize letting in those refugees ‘deemed to be the most vulnerable.’ LGBT people would be among those meeting that definition.” The article goes on to say that the State Department has said that, “priority would be placed on those facing extreme persecution,” and that the definition of those being persecuted included LGBT refugees. Another interesting dimension the article described was a change recently in the State Department definition of the word, ‘spouse’, which now includes LGBT. So LGBT spouses of Syrian refugees are now seen differently than they might have been, thanks to marriage equality.
Sitting in a coffee shop this morning I was surprised by the number of cute, sexy men who came in. Some alone, some with other guys and some with women. Texting my partner as I sipped my coffee I told him that there were a lot of cute suburban guys in the coffee shop this morning. It was difficult not to stare. It seemed like the men were cuter then the women. Maybe it is my perspective, I texted. His reply, “You are seeing the world through boy colored glasses.” I guess am.
Tonight I attended a screening of the film, Desert Migration. The film is a documentary about long-term survivors of HIV/AIDS. The film tells a powerful story of different individuals, all long-term HIV/AIDS survivors, living in Palm Springs, CA. I have read about the complex set of issues facing long term HIV/AIDS survivors but have no personal experience in this area. I was very moved by the film and the filmmaker’s powerful way of letting each men tell their story in a raw, unfiltered manner.
Ireland just passed a bill removing religious exemption from their LGBT equality law. The Republic of Ireland earlier this year approved same sex marriage in a referendum, which went into effect this month. They are now removing the religious exemption, a topic that has been controversial in the United States, from their equality laws.
I am fully out at the company where I work. I came out as a gay man over a year and a half ago. But when I work outside the four walls of my company, it can feel like I am back in the closet. I serve on the board of directors of a company that my company owns along with six other companies. Four times a year I fly off to different cities for the board meetings. I have never come out to my fellow board members. One of the Vice President’s of the company, on whose board I serve, is an out lesbian, and I am out to her. She is a ray of light to me in this staid business relationship.
As a gay man and a father I could not have asked for you to be any more supportive than you have been since I came out to you three years ago. When we marched together this past summer, with my boyfriend, surrounded by my coworkers, in the Capital Pride Parade, it was a powerful and empowering experience.
I just finished reading the newly published book, Becoming Nicole: The Transformation of an American Family by Amy Ellis Nutt. It is a fascinating, well written story about what it means to be transgender in todays world. Nutt tells the story of the Maines family interspersed with chapters on the history and most current scientific understanding of what it means to be transgender. The book is a portrait of a family and their journey from the adoption of two male twins, and the belief by one of the twins, almost from his birth, that he was a girl inside.