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Bromo of the Week: Anderson Cooper

5 Jul

“The fact is, I’m gay.”

As we’re sure most of you know by now, Anderson Cooper has come out and said that he is gay.

In a blog post on his friend Andrew Sullivan’s blog, Anderson was asked to weigh in on the topic of gay people in the public eye and whether or not they should come out publicly.

In his reply, Anderson disclosed to the public that he is, in fact, gay and he explained a bit why he kept it quiet for so long.

On being a journalist:

” I’ve always believed that who a reporter votes for, what religion they are, who they love, should not be something they have to discuss publicly. As long as a journalist shows fairness and honesty in his or her work, their private life shouldn’t matter.”

On why it’s the right time to come out:

“It’s become clear to me that by remaining silent on certain aspects of my personal life for so long, I have given some the mistaken impression that I am trying to hide something – something that makes me uncomfortable, ashamed or even afraid. This is distressing because it is simply not true.”

On being gay:

“The fact is, I’m gay, always have been, always will be, and I couldn’t be any more happy, comfortable with myself, and proud.”

On bullying:

“…the tide of history only advances when people make themselves fully visible. There continue to be far too many incidences of bullying of young people, as well as discrimination and violence against people of all ages, based on their sexual orientation, and I believe there is value in making clear where I stand.”

Anderson is a well-known and respected journalist who kept his sexuality a secret for professional reasons. We are glad that he was able to come out publicly though, because he shares a very important message: you should never be ashamed of who you are.

And for that, Anderson Cooper is our Bromo of the Week.

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Gender is…

5 Jul

Found this picture on the LGBT News Facebook page this morning and thought it would be nice to share here.

What is gender to you?

Zealots Boycotting Oreo Because of a Picture

28 Jun

Get ready to blow a gasket.

Last night, Oreo posted the following the picture to their Facebook page:

What followed was a slew of homophobic and idiotic comments from assholes:

“Boo…This makes me sad that oreo’s support homosexuality.” – Toni Lipford, 1 Like.

“gays need to leave america.” – Dylan Arsenault, 3 Likes.

“This is absolutely disgusting. Your attempt to “normalize” the behaviour of homosexuals has cost you a customer.” – Desean Washington, 4 Likes.

“don’t support gays or the companies that do, and hell yea i’m a hater! being a fag is just wrong and always will be!!!! you should all be exiled to some island where you can all share aids together!! no more oreos for this family!!!!!” – Robert Hunter, 1 Like.

“Homosexual ‘love’ is not real love. ‘Greater love hath no man than to lay down his life his friends.’ — Jesus Christ. You are supporting the wrong things Oreo. Won’t be buying your cookies no mo’ in my house. ENjoy your new lack of sales!!!! :)” – Crystal Walker, 1 Like.

And that’s just a sample of them. Buzzfeed has compiled a list of them if you want to get your blood boiling even more.

Personally, I think Oreo is better off without these people. Actually, a lot of things would be better off without these people. But I’m not going to call for them to be exiled to an island where all bigots can share diseases together because that’s just wrong… and I’m not an asshole (I’m looking at you, Robert Hunter).

What really scares me though is most of these people are parents and have families. These are the “values” (and I really hate to use that word here) that they’re passing on to their children. “Homosexual love is not real love”!?!?! Where do they even come up with this shit?!

This morning, the Oreo page was flooded with more positive comments in support of the company’s stance on gay pride. Most of these commenters also denounced the ‘haters’ who will no longer be buying Oreos. Good riddance.

Thank you, Oreo, for taking a stand and for not backing down in the face of bigots and bullies.

Update: CFI Covers Up Transphobic Pride Parade Plans

21 Jun

In an apparent attempt to obtain an ally cookie from the trans* community of Toronto, Centre for Inquiry planned to dress their members in drag and march in the Pride Parade.

This year we’re going to have a bit of fun- and show our support for the trans community BY DRESSING IN DRAG. Transphobia is an insidious and often overlooked problem which effects thousands of Canadians.

CFI apparently had no idea that their effort was actually the transphobia they were trying to avoid in action. The complicated history between drag communities and trans communities is not one which has a place for an uninvited atheist community.

Several members of the trans community, as well as allies, started a small e-mail campaign to bring the organization’s attention to their blatant transphobia. In response, CFI quietly removed the offending statements with no acknowledgement to the complaints.

The now removed transphobia from CFI

This is not good enough. CFI is perpetuating the invisibility of the trans* community by refusing to comment on the legitimate concerns of trans* people. Instead of using this as an learning opportunity for their diverse following, CFI is silencing trans* voices in hopes of covering up their transphobia.

And don’t get me started on the problems associated with straight people dressing in drag at Pride to begin with.

UPDATE: Almost immediately after this post hit Twitter and Facebook, Jaimy Warner responded on the CFI @Pride event page – excerpt:

I admit that I could have worded the content better-it was not my intention to suggest drag and trans are the same … I can see how the juxtaposition of ‘drag’ and ‘trans’ could have easily been interpreted as offensive, and I have since removed that particular content from this event, the website and our newsletter.

A typical not-pology, placing the blame on queer people for being offended instead of owning up to the fact that the staff at CSI is still learning about the oppressions that trans* people face.

My advice to CFI members: Skip the drag and celebrate Pride like the rest of us do – being proud of who we are.

UPDATE 2: Warner has posted another apology, cancelled the drag event, and promised to look into the situation further.

Follow Monday

18 Jun

Happy Monday, Bros!

I was out of town this weekend, camping in the wilderness away from high rises, cramped street corners, and the TTC. All I had with me to stay in touch with civilization was my smartphone and Twitter app. Well apparently I’m not following any of the right accounts because I came home to a slew of news stories about special events, tragic accidents, and political mishaps. So this morning I did some research and compiled a list of five accounts you should be following if you want to keep up on all things Toronto and I thought I would share it with you. Now we can all stay informed and connected!

1) BlogTO
@BlogTO

You all know BlogTO. From restaurant reviews to movie listings, they’re covering everything Toronto. Follow them for a weekly calendar of events, archived photos of some of the city’s most beloved intersections, TTC updates, and much much more.

Yonge & Bloor, 1920s via @BlogTO

2) Pride Toronto
@PrideToronto

Pride Week is quickly approaching – how are you staying informed on what’s happening when? Follow @PrideToronto, the official Pride Toronto twitter account, for any information or notices you might need for Pride Week. And don’t just unfollow them after the week’s over. These guys stay active all year round, keeping you posted on the most current happenings and issues in the LGBT community.

3) Torontoist
@Torontoist

Torontoist is about Toronto and everything in it. It’s both a blog and a trusting news source. They love keeping Torontonians up-to-date on current events as soon as they happen. They live-tweeted the municipal budget and transport debates in their entirety. Their tweets include “in the news” & “to do today”, making sure every Torontonian is fully informed and never bored.

4) Queer Ontario
@queerontario

This one’s not unique to Toronto but since the LGBT community here is so huge, a large portion of Queer Ontario’s tweets are Toronto-related. Plus, they’re currently making a tour of the province stopping in at major city’s pride weeks, and it’s always fun to see how the rest of the province shows its pride! Follow this account to stay up-to-date on any federal, provincial, and municipal politics that are happening surrounding the LGBT community and the fight for our rights. They recently stayed very close to the passing of Toby’s Law as well as Ontario’s Accepting Schools Act.

5) Official TTC Tweets
@TTCnotices

We’ve all been there before. You’re running late for a meeting, pushing your way onto a subway train when the darned thing stops after 5 minutes. So you wait. And wait. And wait. Finally, an announcement is made that the train is delayed due to some sort of accident that is only vaguely described. Avoid this extremely frustrating situation next time by following @TTCnotices and giving it a quick check before you leave the house. They have up-to-date notices on delays, route diversions, and scheduled track maintenance. Trust me, a lot of frustrations with the TTC have been easily avoided due to my following of this account.

Why is the Queen Street streetcar always delayed?

What accounts do you follow to stay informed about Toronto? Share them in the comments sections below.