A Music Video for Change

Art Attack, a artistic group in Kenya, recently created a remix of “Same Love” featuring prominent queer Kenyan activists to help fight the country’s homophobia, prompting a very interesting exchange with Google. Read more and watch the powerful video below!

*Trigger warning: suicide*download

http://www.tffmag.com/blog/2016/3/17/t7ukb44o9i4hd3q15vzojlzu3t759k

 

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Brief Hiatus

Hello friends!

Sorry for not uploading new content recently; our center has been busy working on an exciting week of events for our Spring Symposium, which will be centered around Native and Indigenous Cultures.

Here is the slideshow for a presentation on Two Spirit Identities one of our staff members did for one of our discussion groups a few weeks ago:

https://docs.google.com/a/my.uri.edu/presentation/d/18ct_Kt7-Jr1GpNldwGPzJp5-hRr4R2PJjEMfe1_qfZ0/edit?usp=docslist_api

two-spirit_image

If this topic interests you, please check out our Facebook page for upcoming event details!

https://www.facebook.com/URILGBTQCenter/?fref=ts

Queering Star Wars

More diversity needed … John Boyega and Oscar Isaac in Star Wars: The Force Awakens.

Two prominent figures from the famous sci-fi series have recently talked about inclusion of homosexuality in the franchise.

When asked about the possibility, JJ Abrams recently responded: “‘I would love it,” he said to The Daily Beast. “To me, the fun of Star Wars is the glory of possibility. So it seems insanely narrow-minded and counterintuitive to say that there wouldn’t be a homosexual character in that world…When I talk about inclusivity it’s not excluding gay characters…It’s about inclusivity. So of course.'”

Actor Mark Hamill followed up on Abrams’ comment, saying: ‘”I just read online that JJ is very much open to that. In the old days, you would get fan mail,” he said to the Sun. “But now fans are writing and asking all these questions: ‘I’m bullied in school … I’m afraid to come out.’ They say to me: ‘Could Luke be gay?’ I’d say it is meant to be interpreted by the viewer. If you think Luke is gay, of course he is. You should not be ashamed of it. Judge Luke by his character, not by who he loves.”‘

Read more here:

http://www.theguardian.com/film/2016/mar/01/jj-abram-gay-characters-in-star-wars-welcome

http://www.theguardian.com/film/2016/feb/20/gay-kiss-star-wars-episode-viii-john-boyega-oscar-isaac

What do you think? Would you like to see a greater spectrum of implied/explicit sexual orientation in Star Wars? Or would it seem like they’re adding the obligate “token” gay characters? Do you think we will ever see folks outside the gender expression binary in major productions like this?

Transitioning Under Obamacare

Here is the story of one woman who used the new Affordable Care Act to cover her gender confirmation surgery when she was not able to access treatment otherwise:

http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2014/08/25/obamacare-now-pays-for-gender-reassignment.html

Contrastingly, below is another op-ed that details some technical problems with the system that might prevent Trans* people from getting the coverage they need:

http://whatifpost.com/despite-obamacare-promise-transgender-people-have-trouble-getting-some-care.htm

(It is important to note that the Trans* experience includes so much more than medical procedures; however, this is still a crucial issue of equality of care and treatment.)