LOCAL NEWS: Jim Kenney, Other Celebs to Guest-Bartend at Philly4Pulse Event

Philly4Pulse is Thursday, July 21, 2016 in the Gayborhood.

Philly4Pulse is Thursday, July 21, 2016 in the Gayborhood.

Philadelphia’s Gayborhood unites with public figures to support the victims of the Orlando Pulse shootings.

Since June 14th, owners and representatives from the Gayborhood’s most popular bars have joined forces to help host an event to support the victims of the tragic Orlando shootings at Pulse Nightclub. Called “Philly4Pulse,” these bar owners (including Tabu, ICandy, Knock, Woody’s, Tavern on Camac, and more) are putting on a huge one-night-only fundraiser with funds going directly to Equality Florida. “With 14 established bars coming together and pooling our contacts, resources, and energy, we have seen an unprecedented response from vendors, suppliers, volunteers,” said Tabu owner Jeffrey Sotland. “We have come together to support the community in ways we never imagined.” The July 21st event is slated to have participating bars feature over 30 local celebrity/public figure guest bartenders including Mayor Jim Kenney, Mike Jerrick and Alex Holley of Fox29, Rue Landau, and District Attorney Seth Williams. Equality Florida CEO Nadine Smith, who helped organized the 1993 March on Washington, will also be at the event in support. In addition to the bar crawls, participating nightclubs will hold Latino-themed evenings as a way of recognizing the majority of the victims of the shooting. “This event is more about just raising money and bringing customers into the bars, Sotland said. “This event is about engagement and the bar owners are bringing Nadine Smith, Executive Director of Equality Florida, to Philadelphia to meet and engage with our community…she was 100% on board, when asked.” For more information on this upcoming event, check out the official Facebook event page. Read more »

NATIONAL NEWS: A Transgender Bathroom Ad Causes Big Buzz

Screenshot from the controversial bathroom ad.

Screenshot from the controversial bathroom ad.

A national TV ad depicting transgender bathroom discrimination will premiere during the Republican National Convention.

A new ad spotlighting the bathroom discrimination struggles faced by transgender people will make its national television debut on the FOX News channel on Thursday, July 21st, during the final night of the Republican National Convention in Cleveland. The 60-second ad, now available to watch at www.FairnessUSA.org, features a transgender woman from North Carolina, where HB2 passed earlier this year, discussing how the lack of state and federal nondiscrimination protections affects her every day. HB2 makes it illegal for transgender people to use restrooms in public buildings that match the gender they live, making them susceptible to even higher levels of harassment and violence. The ad has had thousands of views since its online release on Monday. After the RNC, the ad will run again run nationally on MSNBC during the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia the following week. Read more »

LGBTQ&A: R. Eric Thomas

R. Eric Thomas

R. Eric Thomas

R. Eric Thomas is a local playwright, “dramedian,” and creative writer who still makes time to work at the William Way Center. We got to talk with the renaissance man on what inspires his various talents and what it’s like to go viral online.

Tell us a little about yourself.
I don’t know where to start. That’s not true. Yes, I do. I’m working with a life coach to get better at owning my power. And by that I mean I follow a lot of inspirational Instagrams. Okay, it’s just two inspirational Instagrams. And a lot of thirst traps. Anyway, I’m a lot of things right now: Read more »

TOP PICKS: The Best LGBTQ Events This Weekend

Zaddy returns for a special "Summer Vibes" edition.

Zaddy returns for a special “Summer Vibes” edition.

FRIDAY EVENTS

DTF: Darryl and Timaree Fun Hour
8:30 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Franky Bradley’s, 1320 Chancellor Street; over 21.

“The greatest sex ed/comedy/game show in the known universe” is back with Gayborhood favorite Dr. Timaree and popular comedian Darryl Charles as they chat about sex and everything under the covers. Read more »

The Must-See Films at This Year’s qFLIX Film Festival

qFLIX Philadelphia is from July 5-10, 2016.

qFLIX Philadelphia is from July 5-10, 2016.

Through July 10th, this year’s qFLIX film festival is screening 50 of the most inventive and unique LGBTQ films the city has to offer. Here’s our day-by-day cheat sheet to the standouts.

WEDNESDAY: Kiss Me, Kill Me, directed by Casper Andres
9:30 p.m. at Prince Theatre, 1412 Chestnut Street
Thought you were ready for a gay marriage? This mystery murder caper will have you guessing again. This brilliantly crafted film features so many famous LGBTQ stars that you will be stunned by the cameos while wondering whodunnit. Read more »

NATIONAL NEWS: Activist-Turned-Congressman Pushes for Equality Act

Congressman John Lewis

Congressman John Lewis

Legendary civil-rights-activist-turned-elected-official John Lewis is co-sponsoring the Equality Act.

Georgia Congressman John Lewis, the last surviving Big Six civil rights leader, is co-sponsoring a bill that would add LGBTQ Americans to the classes protected by the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The Equality Act, which would make legislative revisions that would allow for nondiscrimination protections based on sexual orientation and gender identity, has been stalled for years. The current attention surrounding LGBTQ rights during an election year has helped raise interest in pursuing the bill. “People should be discussing it and debating it,” said Lewis to a local Georgia TV station. “No one should be left behind, whether you’re straight or gay. It should be equality for all.” A recent Bloomberg survey found that three-quarters of Americans agree that sexual orientation should be protected the way race is. Read more »

LGBTQ&A: Kelly Burkhardt

Kelly Burkhardt with Hillary Clinton.

Kelly Burkhardt with Hillary Clinton.

Kelly Burkhardt is a photographer/filmmaker who has been spotlighting LGBTQ life in Philly for years. We got to chat with her about her professional aspirations, being a woman in the industry, and her upcoming documentary on the late LGBTQ leader Gloria Casarez.

Can you tell us a little about yourself?
I am proud to say that I have been living and actively participating in Philadelphia’s LGBT community for almost 20 years. I was the VP of operations for TLA Releasing, which primarily focuses on releasing groundbreaking, provocative LGBT films around the world, including gay classics like Latter Days and Mysterious Skin. I was the documentary, feature and shorts programmer for Philadelphia Qfest for ten years. Qfest has morphed into Philadelphia Qflix, and I am so thrilled the festival is continuing on. I have had the privilege of being credited as an award-winning film producer/director/writer, with highlights that include Beautiful Something (2015), directed by Joseph Graham, Miles (2016), directed by Nathan Adloff, which stars Molly Shannon and Paul Reiser and is currently screening at select film festivals right now across the country. Read more »

OPINION: #HeterosexualPrideDay Proves Mainstream Homophobia Still Exists

twitter app

On Tuesday, the world celebrated the 47th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots. It goes without saying that the protests in New York in 1967 constitute one of the most iconic moments in American LGBTQ history. There would be no LGBT Pride Month if not for this historic attack on social injustice and institutionalized homophobia. But only a day later, reality has set in as the hashtag #HeterosexualPrideDay is trending worldwide. Read more »

LOCAL NEWS: LGBT Non-Discrimination Bills Look Stalled for Summer

harrisburg in half

The LGBT non-discrimination bills recently proposed in the Pennsylvania legislature might have to wait until the fall before being considered.

After all of the recent progress made by the state Senate in approving LGBT non-discrimination protections in committee, the possible passing of them seems to be stalled until the fall. Groups such as the Pennsylvania Family Organization have made the argument that such polices would infringe upon their “religious liberty,” and GOP legislators are using that opposition as a justification to hold back on a vote. “Since the House wasn’t going to act on it this week anyway, I’m allowing our chairmen some time to hold hearings and do what they need to do to deal with the bill, and then we’ll make a decision in the fall,” said Senate majority leader Jake Corman to the press. As of now, both parties will are expected to continue to make the case for their positions until lawmakers decided to finally consider a vote. According to Equality Pennsylvania, 68 percent of LGBT Pennsylvanians are not fully protected from discrimination practices in their local ordinances. As a result, Pennsylvania is ranked the lowest on the Human Rights Campaign’s State Equality Index. Read more »

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