Welcome, GO readers, to our weekly roundup of the biggest lesbian, bisexual, queer, and transgender women’s news and entertainment stories! We’ll be recapping the biggest hits each week and talking to the newsmakers, movers, and shakers behind them.
Ellen Page Accuses Brett Ratner Of Outing Her
In the weeks since the New York Times published allegations of sexual misconduct against Harvey Weinstein, there have been a cascade of women who’ve come forward with accusations against other directors, actors and comedians. In a Facebook post on Nov. 10, out actor Ellen Page detailed accusations that Brett Ratner outed her, touched her and used vicious language before they worked together on the film X Men: The Last Stand. At just 18-years-old at the time, Page hadn’t yet come to understand her own sexuality. Page alleges that Ratner told her to sleep with another woman to figure it out. “You should fuck her to make her realize sheʼs gay,” Ratner allegedly said. “I felt violated when this happened,” Page wrote of the incident.
In that horrifyingly inappropriate moment, Ratner weaponized Page’s identity against her, an act that is deeply homophobic. “Making someone feel ashamed of who they are is a cruel manipulation, designed oppress and repress,” Page wrote in the post that also detailed sexual misconduct. “I was robbed of more than autonomy over my ability define myself.” Page is among a small group of queer women who’ve spoken out about Hollywood’s toxic masculinity in the wake of allegations. In a society that aims to discredit, undermine and disempower those who come forward, Page is truly brave for telling her story.
It’s Transgender Awareness Week
How are you centering trans people in your life this week (and always)? Are you donating to the Trans Women of Color Collective? Or maybe purchasing holidays gifts from trans and nonbinary artists? Possibly even talking to your friends and family about being more trans inclusive? The work is a daily commitment to undoing the systems of power that continue to oppress us all. #TransAwarenessWeek
From Nov. 13 to Nov.17, organizations and activists across the country are bringing attention to trans visibility. While trans people have received heightened media in recent years, they still face astonishingly high levels of violence, underemployment and policing. Visibility is so important to ending the stigma against trans people, and provide support for the community. In an effort to address the issues faced by the community, GLAAD has several resources for how to show allyship, such as guides to use gender neutral language and information about how the media should cover trans issues. And we just wrote about how to use more gender inclusive language. The week leads up to Transgender Day of Remembrance on Nov. 20, a day to remember the lives lost to transphobic violence.
Amber Heard Was Told Coming Out Would Ruin Her Career
It’s the oldest anti-LGBTQ tactic in Hollywood, and yet we rarely talk about how the pressure to remain closeted in affects bisexual actors. In Allure’s December cover story, Amber Heard opened up about how she was told that coming out as bi would ruin her chances to make it in the industry. “Everyone told me: ‘You cannot do this.’ I had played opposite Nicolas Cage [in one movie], and in another I was playing opposite Johnny [Depp],” Heard told the magazine. “And everyone said, ‘You’re throwing it all away. You can’t do this to your career,’” she added. “And I said, ‘I cannot do this any other way. Watch me.’” As an in-demand actor, Heard obviously proved the naysayers wrong. Her story goes to show that bisexual people, too, face pressures to remain closeted. Go off, Amber!
Lena Waithe Covers The ‘OUT100’
Even before the multi-talented writer and actor became the first black woman to win an Emmy for comedy writing, Lena Waithe was beloved in the queer community for Master of None. So, it only seems appropriate that she’s one of the covers for 2017’s Out 100. The magazine recognized Waithe as “Artist of the Year.” “If I wasn’t a queer black woman, I don’t know if I would have been standing on that stage,” Waithe told the magazine of her Emmys moment. “I hoped that they could see through me that when you tell your story, when you live your authentic life, only good things will come from it.” Waithe penned the upcoming Showtime series The Chi and is set to star in the 2018 Steven Spielberg film Ready Player One.
Australia Says Yes To Marriage Equality
After a two month-long postal survey, Australia voted “yes” to same-sex marriage. This week, there were big celebrations down under thanks to an overwhelming win for marriage equality in the country. 61 percent of the country voted in favor, while just 38 percent voted it down, according to CNN. While the LGBTQ community never wanted a vote — our rights should never be subject to popular opinion — the vote paves the way for a bill to be introduced in parliament that would legalize marriage between same-sex couples. “They voted ‘yes’ for fairness, they voted ‘yes’ for commitment, they voted ‘yes’ for love. And now it is up to us here in the Parliament of Australia to get on with it,” Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said. Love really does win.