LAN Airlines recently launched a web site geared specifically towards LGBT travelers. The site, LAN Diversity, is committed to showing travelers the diversity of South America and providing information that can make travel more enjoyable for LGBT people.
LAN Diversity includes descriptions of South American travel destinations with information specific to LGBT travelers, like gay-friendly locations, gay culture, trips with LGBT tour operators, and local pride parades or other LGBT events. The site also includes local LGBT news for different locations. From the press release:
“If you’re traveling to Buenos Aires, not only can you purchase your ticket from the online booking engine, but you can read current news relating to LGBT topics in that region, view dates for the Buenos Aires International Gay and Lesbian Film Festival or Buenos Aires Pride, and find restaurants and hotels in the city that are popular among gay and lesbian travelers,” said Katitiza Mandakovic, Leisure Director, LAN Airlines North America. “Our goal was to make LANdiversity.com a trusted source for news and information on LGBT travel to South America and we are so proud to be able to offer such a unique resource to travelers all over the world.”
According to the press release, LAN Airlines has always been quite LGBT-friendly, and this certainly proves it. Every single airline, travel destination or tourist area should have some kind of service like this. I’ll definitely be using it and looking out for others like it.
It was the first full day back after Winter Break. I had actually decided to do it the day before, the minute I entered the dorm, because I knew that he would be there already. Unfortunately, another one of my roommates was also there, so it didn’t happen then. It was a Monday, January 14th. I remember being nervous all day. I asked my best friend if he wanted to go on a walk after dinner, and he agreed. He then proceeded to invite the rest of our room to go also, thankfully they all declined (the lazy bums).
Anyway, after dinner we went on our walk. I had decided to walk up to Lookout Point, a spot halfway up the mountain that looks out on the city below, one of my favorite places on campus. Nice and peaceful there. On the way up he asked me if I was alright at least three times, because I obviously wasn’t, and each time I responded with a tepid “Yea, I’m fine.” When we finally got there I sat in silence with my back to the view, he was standing behind me looking out at the city. We were like that for what felt like an eternity, although was probably only a few minutes, me trying to get the words out, although I was not making a sound. Luckily, I was prepared for my own inability to speak, so I finally stood up, shaking, tapped him on the shoulder and handed him a letter. It was only a few paragraphs long, but it said all that needed to be said (”I’m bisexual. I hope this doesn’t change anything between us.”). I walked away trying not to cry, not succeeding in doing so. I leaned against a rock wall about twenty feet away, my back turned, completely dreading what was to come next. About a minute later I hear him walking towards me, and as he approached I heard the words that I will never forget, “Hey man; that’s fine.”
I won’t ever forget the conversation that followed. He told me he was completely okay with it, and that his mother was gay, which he had always found hard/awkward to have to tell friends. I never actually said the words “I’m bi” to him until a few nights later on a different walk. We were interrupted by the cops at one point, asking if we were alright, and at that point I could respond truthfully, “Yes.” When we started the walk back down the mountain my legs almost gave out from under me. I asked for the letter back, because I wanted something to always remind me of that night. I still have it, and read it anytime I feel down. In hindsight I don’t think that I should have taken it back though. I think that if something like that had been given to me, I would have wanted to keep it. I don’t think I’ll ever know if he wanted to keep it or not, because I don’t think I’ll be ever be asking him “Hey, you know that letter that I gave you when I came out? You want it back?”
I came out months later as gay. I don’t know if I was gay all along and was just denying that fact to myself, or if I was truly bisexual and my sexuality just evolved. I don’t think that it really matters either way. I felt what I felt, and I am what I am. Nothing will change that.
I’m assuming this is in the middle of a conversation about you being a gay. And this human is like ‘oooh you’re a gay, have you ever had sex tho’ and you’re like ‘yea i bone same-sexed people all the time’ and then they’re like ‘but that’s…
The North Carolina Psychological Association has published a straightforward list of reasons why opposing marriage equality is simply incorrect. This comes at a time when North Carolina is considering an amendment to ban same-sex marriage in the state.
A summary of the reasons:
1. There is no empirical evidence that supports the denial of marriage rights to people in same-sex relationships.
2. There is empirical evidence that denial of marriage rights to people in same-sex relationships is damaging to their psychological health.
3. There is empirical evidence that opposing denial of marriage rights initiatives has beneficial psychological effects.
4. Psychologists have colleagues and we have clients for whom this issue is relevant and important, and who appreciate representation. From a social justice perspective, significant benefits accrue to all of us when diverse families are legally and socially sanctioned.
Thus, it is resolved that, based on the available empirical evidence, the North Carolina Psychological Association is opposed to the May ballot initiative that would alter the North Carolina Constitution to make marriage between a man and a woman the only legal domestic union recognized in the state. This position will be communicated to NCPA members, and NCPA may be listed with other organizations opposing the amendment, such as Equality NC. NCPA may also seek to make coalitions with other mental health associations and agencies for the purpose of opposing the amendment.
“…Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that people won’t feel insecure around you. … when we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”—Maryanne Williamson (via myowngirlfriend)
APICHA, one of New York’s most progressive community health centers, officially opens the doors to a Transgender Clinic. Designed to accommodate the distinct needs of transgender and gender variant/genderqueer individuals with particular focus on communities of color.
I came out to my sisters and friends when I was 17. It came as a shock but they accepted me and loved me for who I am.
I’m American but was born and raised here in Mexico because my father lived here before he met my mother. It’s hell to live in a place like this even though I might sound ungrateful and spoiled. Most of the time I got things that I wanted and drove a fancy car but being in a Catholic private school all my life and having a homophobic mother, family and ex-friends is not something to be jealous about.
I learned how to hide who I am since I was in the 3rd grade, wearing a mask since then because being gay is something “sinful” and wrong. I was told daily that gays where only welcomed in hell so I lived with that fear.
Once I came out to my sister a huge weight was lifted off of my shoulders but not my sister’s. The person I told everything to is now studying in Utah and I need her each and every day because my mother hates me and surprisingly so do I. My mother has bombarded me several times during the past years with homophobic comments. The first was when we were watching the news and saw that in UK they were going to approve a tax on divorce. “That’s an excellent idea! Couldn’t agree more, lets see if they think twice once they file for divorce, this will teach them not to divorce a year after they get married, or like gays that they file for divorce after ten days.” I don’t know where she gets her information.
Another example was when we were in the car, I thanked a car for giving me the chance to pass with a hand gesture and she said, “Don’t move your hand like that, men don’t do that. You look like a girl or worse a ‘fag’.” Those words hurt more than they should and my friends tell me I should stop thinking about it, that she’s not worth my love nor my time. But it hurts, it hurts that the person who is biologically programed to love you hates you for something you didn’t choose to be.
And even though I’m closer to my friends and sisters than ever there’s something missing and no matter how hard I try to fill that hole with friends, booze, drugs and sex (I know that’s not an excuse but it’s an escape), I feel lonely, I can’t find someone to love me here. No matter how hard I try or how many gay friends I have no one seems to love me. Some have been close but in the end no one stays. And I feel depressed, afraid of loneliness and no one seems to notice, no one seems to see that I’m going insane and I need someone to save me or maybe they do see it but they just don’t care enough. Now I’m only waiting for the next two years when I transfer and go study to California or New York and forget this godforsaken town.
I fear I’ll never find someone, someone who makes me eager for the future and makes my day every day. I also fear not being here on family dinners because of those too cold-hearted to associate with gays. And each night I wonder, will my so-called mother still love me if I told her, will she come to my wedding, cry when I leave? Or would she thank the “god” above? For finally letting me go, the person she pretended to love.
So for now I’ll wait wait to get out of here, wait to be loved, wait to be free.
Alfred Kinsey believed that human sexuality could be charted on a scale of 0 to 6, with 0 being “Exclusively heterosexual” and 6 being “Exclusively homosexual.” Owing to changing cultural boundaries and advanced research, Kinsey’s scale has recently been expanded:
0. So heterosexual that you think all other heterosexuals should be shot, because they seem a little gay.
1. So heterosexual that when a tax return or a loan application asks your gender you reply, “Straight.”
2. So heterosexual that the thought of two people of the same sex having intercourse doesn’t disgust you; it confuses you—“Wait a minute, if they’re both girls, which one falls asleep immediately afterward while the other one keeps babbling about her day?”
3. So heterosexual that when you go to see “Hugh Jackman: Back on Broadway” you can’t understand why he doesn’t just use his steel Wolverine claws to kill his backup dancers.
4. Heterosexual, yet still able to read the Times’ Arts & Leisure section without asking, “Who are Patti LuPone and Mandy Patinkin? School-board members from Staten Island?”
5. Heterosexual, but still willing to understand, at least theoretically, why two women having sex aren’t just practicing until their husbands get back from their golf date.
6. Heterosexual, yet still able to wear colors other than brown, olive green, and navy blue (but never pink or yellow, because you’re not some goddam circus clown).
7. Heterosexual, but sometimes fantasizes about bathing.
8. Heterosexual, but once, at college, glimpsed a roommate naked and thought, If everyone else in the world were dead, I would have sex with that person, as long as we both kept saying, “But everyone else is still dead, right?”
9. Heterosexual, but once, while serving in the military, made love with a same-sex partner, and afterward said either “I was so drunk,” “Wait—does that count as sex?,” or “Whoa. At least now I can check that off my bucket list, along with hot-air ballooning.”
10. Heterosexual, but during sex with one’s spouse often pictures the spouse with different genitalia sprouting from his or her forehead. This is not to be confused with imagining your spouse’s forehead as a place to hold keys, or to hang up your windbreaker.
11. Heterosexual, but while on business trips will frequently have intercourse with same-sex partners, primarily because they know the best local restaurants.
12. You identify as bisexual because you think it will double your chances of getting a date for Saturday night.
13. You identify as bisexual because you think it sounds French.
14. So bisexual that you fantasize not only about both Brad and Angelina but also about Regis and Kelly.
15. So bisexual that you get Patti LuPone and Mandy Patinkin confused.
16. Almost too bisexual, because you keep approaching straight married couples on the subway and murmuring, “The answer is yes.”
17. Homosexual, but occasionally attracted to the opposite gender, just to get your mom’s hopes up.
18. Homosexual, but willing to look at a member of the opposite sex without howling, “Dear God in Heaven, what is that?”
19. Homosexual, but sometimes still fantasizes about kissing someone of the opposite sex, as an item on a scavenger hunt.
20. Homosexual, but willing to speak to heterosexuals without muttering, under your breath, “Have you ever even been to a museum?”
21. So homosexual that both partners can achieve orgasm just by debating dream casting for the next revival of “Follies.”
22. So homosexual that you refer to you and your partner’s genitalia as “matchy-matchy.”
23. So exclusively homosexual that you made an “It Gets Better” video aimed at kids who were raised in homes without stacks of coffee-table books.
24. So overwhelmingly homosexual that you dream that Patti LuPone and Mandy Patinkin are your birth parents.
I identify as genderqueer even though I ID as female because my gender expression is very queer. Not just my clothing/fashion sense, but also my personality, mannerisms, etc. I’m a strange mix of stereotypically male and stereotypically female traits. I’m…
Each year, QUEER WOMEN OF COLOR MEDIA ARTS PROJECT offers 4 free Filmmaking Workshops through our award-winning Training Program. Our workshops serve teenagers to elders.
To better serve our community, QWOCMAP has conducted Training Program workshops specifically for youth (ages 18 to 25), queer folks of color who are butch/genderqueer/transgender, Asian/Pacific Islander, Black/African descent, Chicanas/Latinas, and Native American/Indigenous/First Nations queer women. We also offered a workshop focused on queer immigration. We do this to deepen the dialogue and address issues specific to each community’s needs.
Intermediate workshops (and soon, advanced workshops) are available to participants who have completed a film through our QWOCMAP introductory workshop. Information regarding intermediate workshops will be announced through our filmmaker listserve and on this page when available. Please contact TRAINING@qwocmap.org with questions or inquiries.
“Using ‘gay and lesbian’ as a phrase that’s supposed to include the whole queer community is like using ‘he’ as a pronoun standing in for all people. In both cases, over half the group is left out.”—Lindasusan Ulrich, bisexual-identified LGBTQ+ activist and principal author & editor of the 2011 San Francisco Human Rights Commission report “Bisexual Invisibility: Impacts and Recommendations” (via bialogue-group)
I’ve known Kate since we were in Kindergarten. We befriended one another in high school, dated for 3 1/2 years, attended colleges in the Hudson Valley region of New York, and both came out as trans* during adulthood.
Kate usually prefers not to subscribe to any particular…