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How punk music and feminism changed a young life

| Sunday, July 13, 2014

Rudy Garcia of East L.A. says that when he was young, he never quite felt like the “normal” kid. Although his migrant parents pressured the youngest of their eight children to be the embodiment of the American dream, Rudy was more interested in punk-rock music, feminism, and ‘zine culture.

“Everything that I was into was also very not received well by my family, you know? They just thought I was crazy: ‘What are you doing?’ or, ‘How are you dressing? Oh, my God! You’re embarrassing the family!’ I would get angry at my mom, but it was this misdirected anger.”

Rudy’s hobbies soon became passions, and he created his own ‘zine, Scutter, which served as an outlet for creative self-expression as well as musical and cultural exploration. Rudy identifies this crucial time in his life as the point where he began to feel alive again.

It became more about expressing myself and really talking to musicians about homophobia, and feminism, and trying to change things, and then also just being really honest about my life, and my experiences, and hating my body slash trying to love my body.

This is Rudy’s true LGBTQ story:

“I’m from Driftwood,” a collection of “lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer stories from all over the world,” appears weekends on LGBTQ Nation. For more true LGBT stories, or to share your own, visit “I’m from Driftwood.”

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OUT: Michael Sam and the draw that changed American sports forever

| Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Michael Sam, the first openly gay player drafted into the NFL, graces the cover of the August issue of OUT Magazine, the first time he has appeared on the cover of a gay publication.

OUT

OUT

An excerpt:

The first 15 minutes of the interview were excruciating. Sam refused to make eye contact with me. His answers were curt and nonrevealing. … I was starting to understand why he won Defensive Player of the Year.

Desperate to turn things around, I started talking about myself and mentioned visiting a boyfriend in upstate New York. Suddenly Sam’s head perked up; for the first time, he looked me in the eyes. “Wait—you’re gay?” I wasn’t sure how this could have been unclear. “Uh, yes,” I replied, wondering how he was going to take the news. “Oh!” he blurted, his voice rising five octaves. “And Aaron [Hicklin, Out’s editor in chief ]? Is he gay, too?” I nodded.

His face melted into a smile; he inched his chair closer to the table and loosened the furrow in his brow. “I thought you guys were straight! That’s why I was giving you a hard time.” His eyes, which had glared with impermeability all through the shoot, suddenly started to radiate warmth and comradeship. Sam’s metamorphosis was so sudden and cartoonish, it suggested how much energy he was having to expend to protect his sexual orientation from people he feared would use it against him.

Whereas before Sam had refused to discuss his relationship, now he was busting out his phone and showing me pictures of his treasured man. … “I’m sorry about before — I just thought you were some reporter after a story. Some of those guys are vultures.”

Sam may not have an effective gaydar, but he had a keenly developed sense of kinship. His entire adult life had been dominated by teams and, evidently, a binary vision of friend or foe. All it took was the word “boyfriend” for him to switch from lion to lamb, and to become not only cooperative but downright solicitous.

“Have you still not gotten your tea?” he fretted. I hadn’t. He hounded the waiter and obtained my tea, but he was still worried. “Are you sure you don’t want lemon and honey?” He was a strong advocate of lemon and honey.

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Russian MP says naked Apollo on banknote promotes ‘gay propaganda’

| Wednesday, July 9, 2014
A section of a Russian 100-rouble banknote.

A section of a Russian 100-rouble banknote.

A Russian lawmaker wants his country’s Central Bank to change the 100 rouble note and remove naked images of the Greek god Apollo because it violates Russian law by exposing minors to “gay propaganda.”

“You can see clearly that Apollo is naked, you can see his genitalia,” says Member of Parliament Roman Khudyakov.

The note, worth less than $3, depicts an image of a statue of Apollo riding a four-horse chariot atop the Bolshoi Theater, one of Russia’s main cultural symbols, reports Reuters.

“I submitted a parliamentary request and forwarded it directly to the head of the central bank asking for the banknote to be brought into line with the law protecting children and to remove this Apollo,” said Khudyakov.

The Central Bank had no immediate comment.

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Reality series features couples agreeing to get ‘married at first sight’

| Tuesday, July 8, 2014

This is the “sanctity of marriage” that conservatives are fighting to protect: From the FYI Network comes a news series documenting the stories of six individuals, “yearning for romance and a loving partnership,” who agree to a provocative proposal: getting married at first sight?

After four weeks, the three couples must decide whether they want to stay married.

“Married at First Sight” premieres July 8 on the FYI Network (formerly the Biography channel).

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Apple video commemorates LGBT pride: ‘Inclusion inspires innovation’

| Monday, July 7, 2014

In a new video posted on its YouTube page Monday, Apple documents its participation in San Francisco’s LGBT Pride parade on June 29, where approximately 5,000 Apple employees marched in the company’s first ever officially sanctioned Pride parade.

Via Apple:

“On June 29, thousands of Apple employees and their families marched in the San Francisco Pride Parade. They came from around the world — from cities as far as Munich, Paris, and Hong Kong — to celebrate Apple’s unwavering commitment to equality and diversity. Because we believe that inclusion inspires innovation.”

The short film is set to Coldplay’s “A Sky Full of Stars.”

Watch:

Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook made a surprise appearance at the San Francisco event to greet employees and their families early in the morning, but did not march in the parade himself.

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Burger King ‘Proud Whopper’ wrapper for sale on ebay for $1,000

| Monday, July 7, 2014

Burger not included:

ebay

ebay

The “Proud Whopper” was available for only a few days at one San Francisco Burger King location during the city’s pride festivities. Customers were not told what is in the burger, which came wrapped in rainbow paper. Once opened up, a message inside the wrapper stated, “We are all the same inside.”

Update: As of Tuesday, there are still no bids on the wrapper.

Here’s a video of diners trying to figure it out.

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Is a gay ‘showmance’ blossoming in the Big Brother house?

| Monday, July 7, 2014

Is a gay “showmance” finally blossoming in the Big Brother house?

This year’s very “politically correct” season of CBS’ Big Brother is a far cry from last year’s edition, in which viewers were treated to a seemingly endless display of racist, ethnic, homophobic slurs that resulted in reports of at least two houseguests being fired from their jobs.

Now in its 16th year, Big Brother may finally have its first gay “showmance” — or at least, the closest thing to it.

Houseguests Frankie Grande (self-described internet personality and brother of pop singer Ariana Grande) and Zach Rance (a golf enthusiast from Florida, who says he is straight) are regularly seen sharing intimate moments and admiring each other’s “assets.”

And in one televised segment, houseguest Cody Calafiore recalls that Zach once said he wanted to sleep with Frankie (although he allegedly use more colorful language).

Watch a clip:

If the “Zankie” showmance doesn’t work out, gay viewers may be able to look forward to a budding “bromance” between houseguests Devin Shepherd and Caleb Reynolds. In a segment televised Sunday, Shepherd offered to cuddle with Reynolds, who said he’s in need of some close companionship.

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Marriage News Watch: Victory in Ky., more hearings from coast-to-coast

| Monday, July 7, 2014

This week’s Marriage News Watch report from Matt Baume at the American Foundation for Equal Rights (AFER), recaps a big victory in Kentucky, and numerous hearings coming up from one side of the country to the other.

Plus, a battle of wills and a surprise move in Colorado. And one of the Prop 8 lawyers is headed back to court — this time, as a judge.

Watch:

Miss any of these stories? Check the links below under “Related Articles” for the full reports.

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It’s a girl! U.S. Rep. Jared Polis, partner announce birth of daughter

| Friday, July 4, 2014

DENVER — U.S. Rep. Jared Polis (D-Colo.) has announced the birth of a new daughter named Cora.

Cora Polis, born July 4, 2014.Family photo

Cora Polis, born July 4, 2014.

While few details of the birth were made available, the Democratic congressman from Boulder said in a statement Friday, “I think I’m going to miss the fireworks for the first time in my life, but my first daughter is far more thrilling.”

Polis and his partner, Marlon Reis, already have a son, Caspian Julius, who is 2½ years old and is nicknamed “CJ.”

It was unclear whether Cora was adopted or born through a surrogate.

Polis was the first openly gay parent in the U.S. Congress.

Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Uber celebrates LGBT Pride, marriage equality by marrying eight couples

| Thursday, July 3, 2014

In celebration of San Francisco’s LGBT pride and to commemorate the anniversary of marriage equality returning to California, eight couples — gay and straight — said “I do” in a ceremony on Saturday sponsored by Uber, the transportation network company based in San Francisco.

Among the officiants was Campbell, Calif., mayor Evan Low, who in 2009 became the youngest openly gay, Asian American Mayor in the nation.

Here are some highlights on the day:

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