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Apple Originally Thought ‘PeekaBoo Tranny’ Would Be a Great App Store Addition / Queerty

Posted: October 31st, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , , , , | No Comments »

"For all the difficulty developers of gay-related iPhone apps face just trying to get their product in the Apple store, one app that bashed transgender people had no problem getting through," writes Max Simon. Consumers first spotted the trans-bashing app, PeekaBoo Tranny, earlier this week, and asked Apple to pull the app. GLAAD took up the call the next day and it seems Apple has since pulled the app from their store.

The 99¢ app photobombed photos on your iOS device with a person described by some as a drag queen. The developers' "fave review" referred to the digital dopplegangers as "tranny skanks." After their app was pulled, the developers said they wished no offense.

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Emotional Openness May Be Good for Males’ Mental Health – TIME

Posted: August 31st, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , , , | No Comments »

A recent study by Professor Carlos Santos found that stereotypically "girlish skills" like empathy and the desire for intimate relationships help boys lead mentally and emotionally healthier lives—and may even save young men's lives. His multi-ethnic study also found zero correlation between race and hyper-masculinity, countering media stereotypes that often depict minorities as delinquent.

But as Charlie Glickman points out, "if you read the Time article [by Eben Harrel], you'll see some of the sorts of language that reinforce the macho mindset." In yet another example of the media being part of the problem, Harrell uses phrases like "stop sniveling and 'be a man'" and "being a mama's boy," which is the headline, no less. If boys or men escape stereotypes, we risk being gay-bashed.

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Miss. lesbian student sues over rejected tux photo – Yahoo! News

Posted: August 19th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , , , , , , | No Comments »

Ceara Sturgis has been wearing masculine clothes since ninth grade, but her High School denied her the opportunity to wear a tuxedo in the yearbook photo and opted, instead, to flat-out omit her name. Now Christine P. Sun, the ACLU lawyer who represented Constance McMillen in a similar case earlier this year, "filed a federal lawsuit for Sturgis, claiming the Copiah County district discriminated against her on the basis of sex and gender stereotypes," Shelia Byrd reports. "It's unfair and unlawful to force students to conform to outdated notions about what boys and girls should look like without any regard to who they actually are as people," Sun said. Sturgis said she cried when she saw the yearbook and felt punished "just for being who I am."

This new filing comes weeks after McMillen reached a settlement against the Itawamba County School District. McMillen credits Sturgis, whose own legal battle has been going on far longer, with giving her the inspiration for her own challenge.

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Is sex a human right? (via early to bed)

Posted: August 18th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , , , , | 6 Comments »

Early To Bed has a great rundown of a recent controversy:

In England, a 21 year old man with learning disabilities is receiving government funding to take a trip to Amsterdam for the purpose of losing his virginity to a prostitute. … This is just one of the many people receiving sexual services funded through a £520million scheme introduced to empower those with disabilities.

[A social worker] claims, "Refusing to offer him this service would be a violation of his human rights." Jezebel points out the sobering point that this is similar to language used by misogynists to defend rape. … [D]oes any one else find it odd that a country where prostitution is illegal has no problem sending a young man to see one elsewhere?

So, is sex a human right? No, but sexuality is. … Should taxpayers foot the bill for a 21 year old's sex holiday? Hell no.

This sheds some much-needed light on debates over acceptable sex and, more importantly, personal sexual responsibility.

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The last person out of the closet? The bisexual male – CNN.com

Posted: July 1st, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , , , | 2 Comments »

"Coming out bisexual in the 1980s was an agonizing experience for [Robert] Winn, who was raised Methodist in a military family," Stephanie Chen reports. "When Winn was a teenager in the 1980s, public support toward gays and bisexuals plummeted as the HIV panic stigmatized the gay community. Bisexuals were blamed for spreading the virus to the straight population."

Robert Winn, a physician monogamously married to a woman for 18 years, is not an exception among bisexual men. "Joshua Verbeke, a 29-year-old business student at Indiana University…played along with being gay [while working with advocacy organizations] to avoid criticism and questions about being bisexual," and "John, 41, a bisexual from California, said his sexual orientation makes him open-minded."

This balanced article is a rarity, and Stephanie Chen touches on many issues: "being openly bisexual can be complicated." Stereotyped promiscuity, gay camouflage, and disease make being a bisexual man harder than it sounds.

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Windy City Times – Trans professor makes history at Chicago State

Posted: June 30th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Philosophy Professor Das Janssen, the first openly transgender addition to Chicago State University, deals with both gender and race issues daily. "But it isn't Janssen's gender identity that gets the most attention in class," Mason Harrison writes, "it's his race. Janssen, who is white, simply 'politely corrects' students who may refer to him as 'she,' but aggressively challenges his students 'who don't want to be told what to do by white guys in ties at the front of the room.'"

Janssen says, "I haven't had the same troubles here that I've had at other institutions like with bathroom use. People want to make sure that I'm safe here." Mara Keisling, executive director of the National Center for Transgender Equality said, "There is a myth that Black people don't like gay marriage or LGBT people. […] I think that that's all just hogwash. There are white and Black people who are tolerant of LGBT people, and higher education has become a great place to transition." Now that's progress!

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STI Rates Among Swingers

Posted: June 27th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , , , , , | No Comments »

New data from health clinics in The Netherlands shows 12% of people practice swinging, indicating far more couples swing (consensually engage in sex with different partners) than believed. In America, estimates put swingers at 2% of the population, but if the Dutch numbers are any indication, American swingers are way more prevalent. Also, Cory Silverberg writes, "swingers, particularly swingers over 45, had a higher prevalence of STIs when tested at the community clinics."

In fact, swingers "had the second highest rate of combined STIs" among the groups considered, which "included men who have sex with men, sex workers, [and] straight people who weren't swingers." Evidently, STIs don't only target sex workers, despite contrary claims from anti-porn activists. "The researchers rightly point out that swingers may be a population public health folks should start paying some attention to," Cory says, offering common-sense advice about STI risk.

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Update: Cory Silverberg wrote an interesting followup to his piece about this study, which includes more figures and notes that “sex workers as a group are no more homogeneous than any other group, and no more broken than actors in LA or psychiatrists in ERs.”


Feminisnt » An argument for more sex workers to be out?

Posted: June 18th, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: Briefs | Tags: , , , , | No Comments »

Citing Andrew Sullivans' analysis of "Why The Gay Movement is Winning," highlighting that 77% of people say they know a gay or lesbian person today compared with 42% in 1992, independent pornographer Furry Girl urges sex workers to come out of the closet. She says that "Being out [does] loads of good by humanizing a stigmatized part of our society, of which almost no one openly admits they're either a creator/provider or consumer. You can help dispel stereotypes simply by showing people that sex workers are not a monolithic caricature of abused, drug-addled illiterates covered in open sores. […] When your opposition depends on secrecy and shame to influence public opinion, openness is a powerful weapon."

As more gay people come out of the closet, discriminating against them is made harder. Would the same hold true for sex workers? We think so.

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