The Dish: The Rebel Dykes of London Demand a Place in Herstory, Amandla Stenberg on Pronouns

Hide your wives!

Happy Tuesday! I have so much to tell you.

In Detroit, LGBTQ hate crime victims are getting help from advocates at the Fair Michigan Foundation, who, in a new partnership with the city, encourage them to tell their stories, and in some cases, prosecute individuals who harmed them. “It relieves anxiety,” said coordinator Karen Hall. “Our goal is that we are there for them providing support so that they don’t get revictimized. … Our goal is to be there providing support so that they get back on the road to recovery.”

In the 19802, Rebel Dykes ruled London but no one remembered–until now. They were queers and punks who opened the city’s “first lesbian fetish club, Chain Reactions, which caused uproar among other lesbian groups who were more conservative.” But apparently, “the complaints only fuelled the night’s success,” as one Rebel Dyke notes: “It was always packed out, with a different ‘sex cabaret’ each week. ‘Groups of women would come together to put it on and fall in and out of love while making it,’ she laughs. ‘We had pickets outside from other lesbians who thought that lesbians shouldn’t be doing this thing as it ‘wasn’t quite right.'” There’s a documentary in the works about these Dykes now, and you can watch a sizzle reel and donate to help getting it finished.

The United Methodist Church’s judicial council is meeting in Newark, New Jersey this week to “determine the validity of a lesbian’s ordination as a bishop in Colorado.” Rev. Karen Oliveto is a married lesbian who was elected bishop in 2016, but because the church’s Book of Discipline says “self-avowed practicing homosexuals” cannot be ordained, nine council members now get to vote on if she should be allowed to serve as an openly gay clergy member. I hope at least one of those council members asks “What would Jesus do?”

An out lesbian, Alice Weidel, has taken on the position of co-leader for the German Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) party, which is homophobic, misogynistic and xenophobic, so….what the hell? Something she actually said: “We don’t want any imported civil wars on German streets. Political correctness belongs on the rubbish heap of history.” This is why we can’t have nice things. (Strangely, Weidel used to work at Goldman Sachs, and now the company is tracking how many of its applicants are LGBTQ-identified in an effort to become more diverse and inclusive.)

Speaking of lesbian conservatives (is this a theme today or what?), lesbian San Diego County District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis is resigning early this summer and is now “considering a bid next year for the District 4 Board of Supervisors.” Dumanis said in a statement: “Having spent 30 years of my life in the DA’s office, this has been a difficult decision. I’ve spent 43 years in public life and it has been my honor to work on behalf of San Diegans. Serving as district attorney has been an absolute privilege and one of the highest honors of my professional life.”

I don’t know that it’s relevant that Riverview High math teacher Lora Jane Riedas is a lesbian, but conservatives sure think so. Riedas asked students not to wear cross necklaces in her classroom, saying she believed they were “gang symbols,” and now the Liberty Counsel is attacking her for eschewing religious liberty while also pointing out that she “clearly seeks opportunities to engage in GLSEN-directed classroom activism, which has called on teachers to use its ‘Educator Guide’ to promote GLSEN’s views about homosexuality and gender confusion on ‘Day of Silence,’ and to do so this Friday, April 21, 2017.” You say that like it’s a bad thing. p.s. the school says no one has complained about this teacher now or ever.

Australia had a Don’t Ask Don’t Tell policy of its own until 1992, and so LGBTQ military personnel have long been closeted or left out of history. Historians like Ruth Ford are now trying to change that.

Cara Delevingne shares the cover of V with her “Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets” Dane DeHaan this month.

photo by V magazine

Out actor Amandla Stenberg is one of People’s Most Beautiful this year, and in her profile, she shares her thoughts on pronouns: “I tend to believe that gender as we’ve set it up in current-day society doesn’t actually exist. I’ve said before that I’m comfortable with using the pronouns ‘they’ or ‘them’ alongside ‘she’ and ‘her’ just because that’s a conversation that’s important to me. I don’t necessarily always subscribe to female pronouns just because I don’t think that pronouns are necessarily very meaningful.”

photo by People

A new study from Child Development finds that trans and cis kids are pretty similar. In fact, the researchers found that “young transgender children were just as likely as [cisgender] children to (a) show preferences for peers, toys, and clothing culturally associated with their expressed gender, (b) dress in a stereotypically gendered outfit, (c) endorse flexibility in gender stereotypes, and (d) say they are more similar to children of their gender than to children of the other gender.” This once again proves that kids are fine, and adults are the messy ones.

Out Web Fest (“Hollywood’s first web festival dedicated to celebrating short-form digital content created by and for the LGBTQ community”) will honor YouTubers Gigi Gorgeous, Tyler Oakley and Ari Fitz at this year’s Visibility Awards in L.A. on May 12. The fest will take place over the next two days, showing all kinds of cool queer content from the internet.

The 1960s and ’70s were when fashion got a little queerer, and that’s because counterculture began to do away with gender-specific clothing and hair, refusing to look “square.”

Transgender woman Isabella Red Cloud was refused service at a church soup kitchen in Sioux Falls, South Dakota because she was wearing a dress. Cloud then got on Facebook Live and took the mission to task, but was denied entrance to the church again the following day, and was issued a criminal trespassing citation by police. AGAIN, WHAT WOULD JESUS DO?

In much better news, an Indianapolis high school voted out trans senior Alan Belmont as their Prom King. A member of the show choir, he said he has faced some bullying, but ultimately has had a “surge of confidence” after his classmates supported him through his transition. “I want kids to know that confidence is the key to surviving bullying,” Belmont said. “If you love yourself, negative words mean nothing if you know they aren’t true. Believe your own happiness and love over others’ negativity and hate.”

The ACLU is supporting a trans man whose local hospital refused to give him a hysterectomy, canceling the pre-planned procedure the night before surgery.  “They were discriminating against me based on who I am and it took me years and years and years to accept who I am,” said Evan Michael Minton. “It really hit the heart of me just deeply in my core.” Minton and the ACLU filed a suit against the ironically named Dignity Health Mercy San Juan Medical Center in Carmichael last week.

EW has the first look at the posters for the all-female “Hangover”-esque film “Rough Night” starring Scarlett Johansson, Zoe Kravitz, Jillian Bell, Ilana Glazer and, of course, Kate McKinnon.

Photo via EW


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