Protests shake Brazil after beloved black LGBT women’s activist killed

Protests shake Brazil after beloved black LGBT women's activist killed

Marielle Franco’s death is believed to have been an assassination

Thousands have taken to the streets all over Brazil to protest the death of activist and politician Marielle Franco, who was shot to death on Wednesday in what appears to have been a cold-blooded assassination.

The 38-year-old, who was a city councillor in Rio de Janeiro, has been immediately martyred as a symbol of the voiceless in a country which has long been suffering from the effects of structural racism and poverty.

The Associated Press reports that two men in a car fired nine shots into the car carrying Franco and her driver, Anderson Pedro Gomes, on Wednesday evening and that a press officer in the back seat of the vehicle was injured but survived the attack. The officials they spoke to said they believed that Franco was targeted.

Franco was killed hours after holding an empowerment event for “Young Black Women Who Are Changing Power Structures”. In a speech at the event, she spoke out about police brutality and the lack of black councilwomen elected in Rio.

“I’ll be there for 10 years,” she said of her post which she had held since 2016. “Or think that I’ll be there for 10 […]

Travel operators eye pink dollars as rich LGBT tourists are more willing to go off the beaten track

Travel operators eye pink dollars as rich LGBT tourists are more willing to go off the beaten track

A placard advertising LGBT travel at the ITB travel trade fair in Berlin. Photo: John MacDougall From gay-friendly honeymoon destinations to party escapes, tourism has long catered to LGBT travellers. As acceptance grows, so do calls for the industry to broaden its offers, and avoid clichés.

All too often travel professionals stuck to stereotypical views of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transsexual guests as hedonistic holidaymakers, says Thomas Boemkes of the consulting agency Diversity Tourism at Berlin’s ITB fair, the world’s largest travel trade show.

“Hotel owners still ask me how to be gay friendly, and if, for example, they should be offering condoms,” says Boemkes.

“I tell them all they have to do is be tolerant and welcoming, as you would be with any other client, without being intrusive,” he says, adding that “it is appreciated” when reception staff ask two male guests whether they would like twin rooms or a shared bed.

The World Tourism Organisation estimated in a 2016 report that LGBT travellers account for five to 10 per cent of global tourists.

It describes a group “that travels with greater frequency and shows higher-than-average patterns of spending”, making them and their so-called “pink dollars” welcome visitors in many countries. John Tanzella, […]

LGBT boat party to start Worcester’s Pride celebrations

LGBT boat party to start Worcester's Pride celebrations

Tomas Easterlow (left) and Vince Monte (right) onboard the Pride of the West Midlands which will set sail along the River Severn to start Worcester’s Pride celebrations. Photo: Jonathan Barry A BOAT party along the River Severn will begin the countdown towards Worcestershire Pride.

For the third year running, the city will be celebrating its LGBT community and an 80-strong party will again take to the water to kick things off.

Organised by Vince Monte and Tomas Easterlow, the boat party will depart from North Quay and then cruise along the River Severn to Diglis before returning.

Hosted by Annie Rexic, DJs and a host of drag queens, many of whom are from the local area, will perform including Alicia Lashes, Isabel End, Miss Pandy La’Roux and Marla B.Zarre.

Misty Monique, Paul Aleksandr, Rachael Starla and Eva Fliction will also perform.

Mr Monte, said: "We’ve got lots of drag queens and DJs appearing on the night."We wanted to keep the acts as local as possible so it really feels like a Worcestershire Pride and focuses on what is going on around Worcester."We’re trying to push as much local talent as possible."It’s going to be bigger and better than ever before."We’ve got about 80 places […]

Irish PM Leo Varadkar: I talked about LGBT rights with Mike Pence

Irish PM Leo Varadkar: I talked about LGBT rights with Mike Pence

Ireland’s Prime Minister Leo Varadkar speaks before presenting a bowl of Shamrock to US President Donald Trump as Vice President Mike Pence (L) looks on in the East Room of the White House on March 15, 2018 in Washington, DC. (Photo by MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images) Ireland’s Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has confirmed he raised LGBT rights at a behind-closed-doors meeting with US Vice President Mike Pence.

In a break from political convention, media were banned from Vice President’s meeting with Mr Varadkar, who is one of just a few openly gay world leaders.

LGBT rights groups suspect that the reporting ban was put in place by the VP to avoid him being called out publicly on his anti-LGBT record.

Mr Varadkar has now spoken about how the meeting went down – though, naturally, his account of affairs is diplomatic.

He confirmed: “I did privately manage to speak to them about equality and my support for equal rights for women and the LGBT community here in America and also in Ireland.”

The leader did not recount Mr Pence’s response. United States Vice President Mike Pence looks on as Prime Minister Leo Varadkar of Ireland speaks during the Shamrock Bowl Presentation at the White House on March […]

Republican aborts election bid after calling teen shooting survivor Emma Gonzalez a ‘skinhead lesbian’

Republican aborts election bid after calling teen shooting survivor Emma Gonzalez a ‘skinhead lesbian’

Leslie Gibson (left) quit after making disparaging remarks about Emma Gonzalez A Republican candidate has aborted his election campaign, after facing fury for comments about Parkland shooting survivor Emma González.

Emma González was a senior at the school in Parkland, Florida, where 17 people died and 14 were injured in a mass shooting by an extremist with a legally-bought assault rifle last month.

The teenager was the target of a shocking slur earlier this month from Leslie Gibson, a GOP candidate who had been running for a place in Maine’s House of Representatives.

The politician wrote: “There is nothing about this skinhead lesbian that impresses me and there is nothing that she has to say unless you’re a frothing at the mouth moonbat.”

He went on to question her status as a survivor of the shooting, claiming she was in “a different part of the school” while her classmates were being murdered. (Getty) Mr Gibson today dropped out of the race – after a young Democrat running to block his election raised thousands through a crowdfunding campaign off the back of his row.

The candidate said dropping out would be “the best thing for everybody.”The Republican added: “I am not walking away with my […]

Brutal blow for Cynthia Nixon’s political ambitions as Sir Elton John backs her opponent

Brutal blow for Cynthia Nixon’s political ambitions as Sir Elton John backs her opponent

Cynthia Nixon and Sir Elton John (Photo by Roy Rochlin/Getty Images) Sir Elton John has backed Cynthia Nixon’s opponent, as the actress prepares a bid to become the first openly gay Governor of New York.

The Sex and the City actress is expected to shortly announce a campaign as a Democratic challenger to New York’s incumbent Governor Andrew Cuomo.

Nixon, who starred on iconic New York-based TV show Sex and the City as Miranda Hobbes, has been a frequent critic from the left of Governor Cuomo, who is seeking a third term in office.

Her governorship would shatter two ceilings at once – New York has never had a female governor, nor an openly gay governor. Cynthia Nixon at the Tony Awards (Getty Images) But Nixon’s ambitions were struck a blow today – when seasoned LGBT rights campaigner Sir Elton John backed her rival.

Sr Elton threw his full support behind Cuomo’s re-election campaign, releasing a statement on Friday alongside his his husband David Furnish that endorsed Governor Cuomo for a third term.

The letter repeatedly cited Governor Cuomo’s leadership on LGBT issues – somewhat of a low blow to the actress, given Nixon is herself part of the LGBT community.Sir Elton and David […]

Gotham star Cory Michael Smith comes out

Gotham star Cory Michael Smith comes out

Edward Nygma Gotham star Cory Michael Smith has spoken about his sexuality publicly for the first time – as he stars in a drama set during the AIDS crisis.

Smith is best known for playing Edward Nygma, AKA supervillain The Riddler, on Fox’s popular Batman prequel TV series.

In an interview with the Daily Beast , Smith revealed that he identifies as queer.

He had been discussing his new film ‘1985’, which debuted at SXSW this month and tackles the AIDS crisis head-on.

The actor revealed that the film’s plot – which features a man travelling back to his family home after the death of his same-sex partner from AIDS-related illness – had a special poignance in his mind.

He said: “There’s something special about telling a story that feels closer to home. I’m not exactly like The Riddler in real life.“I’m from Middle America… I’m from Ohio. I’ve been living here [in New York] for a while, and there are stretches when I don’t see my family often.“Going home and that whole charade is very familiar. The first family dinner after a while. Coming out to a family, the fear of that.” The actor added that his own family responded with “a lot […]

Talk show host asks out Adam Rippon during live TV interview

Talk show host asks out Adam Rippon during live TV interview

Adam Rippon An out TV host took full advantage of his interview with Adam Rippon this week – to ask him on a date.

The Olympic bronze medallist has made very clear in previous interviews that he’s single and looking to mingle, and the message has definitely been received loud and clear.

Rippon was making an appearance on E!’s Daily Pop show this week when host Justin Sylvester took it in a surprising direction.

The anchor quizzed Rippon about sexting and his friendship with former skater Johnny Weir – before turning the interview to romance. Sylvester asked Rippon: “Are you dating anyone right now?” Rippon confirmed he was not, quipping: “Listen, anybody out there, let me know! I’ve just been so busy, I haven’t really had time.”

The TV host responded: “I’m just going to throw this out there… when you come to LA, I want to take you out on a date.

“Let’s grab drinks, your choice, or I can show you my LA, and we can just kick it!” Rippon appeared a bit taken aback by the line of questioning. He responded: “Wow. I love it. I love to just kick it.”The skater then accepted a rose from Sylvester, who added: “I’m […]

Olly Alexander: I was advised to stay in the closet when I got a record deal

Olly Alexander: I was advised to stay in the closet when I got a record deal

Olly Alexander of Years & Years (Photo by Andrew Toth/Getty Images for H&M) Years & Years singer Olly Alexander has revealed that he was advised to stay in the closet when his band got a record deal.

The singer made the comments while speaking in support of LGBT charity Stonewall at a dinner last night.

He said: “What happened after we signed was, we got offered media training.

“One afternoon I met a very nice lady whose job was to help us answer questions in interviews – give us tips, tell us what journalists might try to trip us up on. I asked her what she thought about me being gay. Olly Alexander (centre) with his Years & Years bandmates (Photo by Brad Barket/Getty Images for H&M) “She said, with very good intentions I’m sure: Why does anybody need to know about your sexuality? What business is it who you go to bed with? Do you really want to invite personal questions like that? Maybe it’s better to not say anything about your sexuality at all.”

He added: “I ignored her advice.”

The singer told the audience of LGBT activists: “The moment came when a journalist did ask me what my sexuality was, and […]

Gay man erased from his mother-in-law’s obituary because newspaper publisher ‘opposes gay marriage’

Gay man erased from his mother-in-law’s obituary because newspaper publisher ‘opposes gay marriage’

Barry Giles, Brenda Light and John Gambill A gay Texas man has spoken of his grief and anger after he was erased from his mother-in-law’s obituary.

Dallas couple Barry Giles and John Gambill, who have been together for 31 years, had placed an obituary for Mr Giles’ mother, Brenda Light, after her tragic death earlier this year.

The obituary, placed in local newspaper the Olton Enterprise, read in part: “Those left to cherish her memory include her son, Barry Giles and his husband, John Gambill of Dallas.”

However, the pair were mortified to discover that the newspaper removed the reference to Mr Gambill – who said Ms Light had been like a “second mother” to him for nearly three decades. When the couple called the newspaper to ask about the change, they were told the copy was erased because of “religious and ethical reasons”.

Speaking to Fox 10 , Mr Gambill said he was left distraught to suffer discrimination at such a difficult time.

He said: “She’s like my second mom, you know.”The pair say that the newspaper’s publisher Phillip Hamilton, who is a Baptist pastor, had made the decision. Mr Gambill said: “[I called them and] I said, ‘Why was my name left […]