A New Anti-LGBTQ Emoji Has Taken Social Media By Storm

A new anti-LGBTQ emoji is popping up on social media.

You may have noticed in the past few days that homophobes and LGBTQ people alike are using a new emoji. The emoji shows a typical pride flag, but it then has a strikethrough symbol layered on top.

The emoji is not an official one, but it has popped up on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. Though, it can only be seen on mobile apps. Whereas, laptop/desktop users see a pride flag with a strikethrough next to it and not on top.

On Twitter, as with most things on that social media platform, there has been a split in discussion and usage of the emoji. Some are alarmed by the emoji’s very existence while others, including LGBTQ people, are using the emoji to make jokes.

Later, one twitter user named Mitchell confessed to being the first to tweet the emoji on Monday evening. The user says he found the flaw in Apple’s code a month ago. According to Out, the user combined two Unicode blocks to make the single emoji.

Mitchell then expressed joy at seeing LGBTQ people using the emoji ironically, but worried about its use by homophobes.

Unfortunately, his fears could easily become reality as the emoji has spread to Facebook and Instagram.

So far, Apple has yet to comment on this development.

Pride Fort Lauderdale Planning One Heck Of A Pride Weekend!

One of my Facebook Friends was at Hunter's Wilton Manors last night (their Sunday Night is EPIC!) and shared dance floor video captioning it, "This is what freedom feels like."  I have to agree Jim, living in Fort Lauderdale and having Wilton Manors at your fingertips, it sure does feel like freedom.  Living in a city where it doesn't really cross your mind that wait... I'm gay and that makes me different. It just really doesn't happen. We're all human and love is love. 

Granted, the epicenter of gay love in Southern Florida is Wilton Manors, the little island city is surrounded by Fort Lauderdale and other FTL burbs.  Fort Lauderdale is full of LGBT love.  I just moved into my new home this week and met the lesbian couple next door, the gay couple on the other side, but still have to meet the owners of 4 other abutting properties, all gay, and I wasn't even aiming to move into a gay neighborhood! 

It's so easy to show your PRIDE living in Fort Lauderdale ... you just have to be who you are and that's it. 

My first couple of years living/renting here, I didn't attend the Pride Fort Lauderdale events in February. They were in a park, had vendors and, well, I just didn't give it the time of day. These past two years... WOW! What an incredible and positive difference it has been since moving PRIDE to the Fort Lauderdale Beach, imho. 

Let's look at 2019 and what the heck is happening this week at Pride Fort Lauderdale.  I so wanted to embed the video from this Facebook post, but alas, I didn't have the ability.  It sums up the whole 4 day celebration. 

Did you click on the link or the pic above and catch all of that? Well, here's more of the breakdown of events.  And to get to and from the beach, check out the infographs at the end of this post.

THURS - Feb 21st 

BRING IT TO THE RUNWAY!!!  A little distance away from the beach, you'll find FASHION to be all about PRIDE as the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, FL. 




FRIDAY - Feb 22nd  &  SATURDAY - Feb 23rd

I've had the pleasure of getting a sneak peek at AirOtic this past week as my roommates are heavily involved in the Sunshine Cathedral.  The talent, the visuals, the costumes, and lack there of are just some of the reasons to check out the erotic AirOtic. 

AirOtic will be flying high over audiences at the Sunshine Cathedral on Friday, Feb. 22 and Saturday, Feb. 23. Get tickets at OUTlandishFL.com for this official Pride event. http://ow.ly/h6ew30nDaNl

You can check out the PrideFortLauderdale Facebook Page for all of this information and more. 


Miss Major Griffin-Gracy and Mayor Dean Trantalis will be the parade grand marshals on Saturday, Feb. 23. Miss Major was an eyewitness to the police raids that sparked the Stonewall Riots and Mayor Trantalis made history as our city's first openly gay mayor.

ERMAHGAWD!  My first ever PRIDE was in Portland, Maine and the Saturday night dance was on the Maine State Pier, aw, the good ol' days.  And who was performing that night on stage?!?! None other than this icon. Not sure I can contain it. 

Pepper MaShay will be performing live on a float in the #PrideFortLauderdale Carnaval parade on Saturday, Feb. 23 

And for the people wanting so see some beautiful women, WWE superstar WWE Sonya Deville will be celebrating Pride in Fort Lauderdale! She'll be appearing in the parade and a TV crew from E!'s "Total Divas" will be filming her all weekend at Pride events for an upcoming episode!


What's a pride without a block party? Well, it's still fun, but come on!  Go to the BLOCK PARTY!

The Spectacular Fort Lauderdale Pride Parade & Block Party!!! Live darlings live!
Now crack that fan!!!



SUNDAY - Feb 24th

"American Idol" fan favorite Ada Vox invites you to join her at Pride Fort Lauderdale on Sunday, Feb. 24 at Fort Lauderdale Beach Park.

But it apparently seems that bookface had an issue with Ada's cleavage. 

I'm truly excited about this year's offering.  I had an amazing time last year on the beach and this year will be even better.

As I mentioned above. Living in Fort Lauderdale is a dream, paradise, almost unreal. Adn to go back to my friend's statement, "This is what freedom feels like."  It looks like Pride Fort Lauderdale is throwing out all the stops to share that feeling of freedom with everyone and anyone that wants to have a taste. 

If you are unable to attend this year's Pride Fort Lauderdale, start booking now for next year.  As we covered in an earlier post - Mark Your Calendars - Pride of the Americas in 2020 Planned for Fort Lauderdale.

Pictures and video from Pride Fort Lauderdale

South Florida City Wraps Police Car To Show Their LGBT Pride

Living just steps from the border of Wilton Manors, I reside in one of the gayest areas in the nation. Depending on what stat, survey, census, based on residents, owned businesses, per capita gay couples, Wilton Manors ranks 1st, 2nd, or 3rd gayest place in the United States. 

FBI Questions, But Doesn't Arrest Man Accused Of Wilton Manors Anti-Gay Threats

Prosecutors Find Man Who Threatened Wilton Manors Had At Least 59 Facebook Accounts.

While walking around the island city, a police presence is seen, felt, known. When there is a threat against our community here, we see the protection that is offered to us. When there is a pride celebration, you will find me clapping louder for the police forces marching in the parade than when the church groups and politicians walk on by. 

Watch Out Palm Springs: A City In Florida Just Elected An All-LGBTQ City Commission

There has been no question in this citizen's mind if the police force is here for the LGBT community of Wilton Manors. But now, they are literally rolling out their support. The Wilton Manors Police Department has redesigned a squad car with “Policing with Pride" statement on the back window and rainbows along the sides.

The Orlando Sentinel shares that Gary Blocker, the city’s assistant police chief, stated, “This is our way of supporting our Wilton Manors community that is welcoming to all. Each and every day, our agency polices with pride and passion and this car reinforces to our stakeholders that we are stronger together.”

Will the car be just for show? It is planned to be out and proud at the upcoming Pride Fort Lauderdale (Feb. 23-24) and the Wilton Manors Stonewall Pride Parade and Street Festival (June 15).

The new vehicle is a little bit of a show as well as a get back at Fort Lauderdale. South Florida Gay News (SFGN) reports:

Wilton Manors police decked out the cruiser in early January well ahead of the two upcoming events so they couldn’t be shamed like they were last year when another city thought of it first.

“Fort Lauderdale skunked us last year,” O’Connell confessed. “They had one of their cars wrapped for our Stonewall parade last year. We are trying to one-up them.”

The festive decor will come off after the June event.

“It’s a wrap. Easy on, easy off,” O’Connell said. The city spent about $1,000 on the decals, he said.

“The few dollars that were spent are significantly outweighed by the popular impact,” O’Connell added. “It’s a great illustration of our Police Department reflecting the community it serves.”

So a little competition between neighboring towns/cities. But both cities still have our best interest in mind. 

Awesome! Fort Lauderdale Elects Its First Ever Openly-Gay Mayor!

The Orlando Sentinel also states the police department invites people to take selfies with the Pride Patrol vehicle and use the hashtag #wmpd4all .

Keep up the good work Wilton Manors.  Thanks for being an example for others. 

h/t: Orlando SentinelSFGN

Manchester Pride Goers Are Mad After Concert Tickets More Than Doubled In Price

Pride goers are pissed!

Tickets for Manchester Pride’s music program and The Village party went on sale yesterday (January 31), and they become a terrible surprise for some fans. It turns out, tickets have more than doubled in price this year, according to the Independent.

Tickets for the event are now priced at £70 (at the most). The year before, the most expensive ticket was £28. Many suspect this could be because of a big name performer that has yet to be announced. But no matter what, many former goers are sharing their anger online.

This isn’t the only change the to event, however. Earlier in January, Manchester Pride changed the event’s name and location. The event that used to be known as The Big Weekend is now being called Manchester Pride Live. In addition, its spot has changed to Mayfield Depot.

But how much are these tickets specifically? Well, the prices go as follows:

  • Rainbow Pass weekend ticket – £70.95
  • Rainbow Pass day ticket – £37.95
  • Gay Village Gathering weekend ticket – £16.50
  • Gay Village Gathering day ticket – £11

The event, which will runs from August 24 through the 25th, is expected to fit 30 artists on two stages. In addition, “world class acts” have been promised to perform at ticket-only parties as well. That said, a line-up has yet to be announced.

We’ll see if its truly the performers upping the price tag in due time. But will former goers think the price is worth it?

h/t: The Independent

Disney Is Hosting Its First Official Pride Parade At One Of Its Theme Parks

Disney Paris is gonna do a Pride night!

Disneyland Paris has announced that it will be hosting an official Pride event from 8pm to 2 am on June 1, 2019.

The event, titled Magical Pride, was originally an unofficial event organized by Greatdays Holidays and Manchester Pride. While they have been going to Disneyland Pride since 2014, Disneyland Paris had no official affiliation with the event.

But that has changed, as Magical Pride has now become an official occasion at the popular theme park.

According to Sortiraparis.com, LGBTQ participants and families will get the entire them park to themselves for the night. Participants also get special opportunities like joining or watching the Magical March of Diversity Parade, event specific Disney character meet & greets, access to select rides, and more.

Related: Get Ready To Celebrate Pride With Disney's New "Rainbow Mickey" Apparel

But how do you sign up for this event? According to Gay.it, you can sign up for your Magical Pride packages now with Greatdays Holidays.

You can secure your spot by depositing at least £99.00 per person and then paying the rest 8 weeks before the event. There are also multiple packages that include staying at a Disney Hotel, a Disney Park Hopper Ticket, and, of course, a ticket to the Magical Pride Party.

If you’re interested and want to take part, you can book your stay today.

h/t: Sortiraparis.com, Gay.it

Nervous Around Gay People? Get a Gay Friend, Study Shows

A study found that the minds of people who are uncomfortable around LGBTQ individuals can be changed if they make just one gay friend, reports NBC

This was the case for one Dr. Nelson Bonheim, who was hesitant to invite his female coworker to his golf club after finding out that she is a lesbian and was living with another woman. However, after getting to know his colleague, he became good friends with her and realized that she and her wife are just like any other couple and even spoke at their wedding. Bonheim recalled that he wasn't against same-sex marriage, but he was not as accepting as he is now. 

Bonheim's acceptance of his lesbian colleague after befriending her is known as contact theory. Daniel DellaPosta, a gay sociology professor at Penn State and author of the study “Gay Acquaintanceship and Attitudes Toward Homosexuality: A Conservative Test" had a personal interest in understanding the relatively recent rise in the acceptance of homosexuality. In his study, he examined how straight people are affected by relationships with gay and lesbian people. He compared data from the 2006, 2008, and 2010 General Social Survey, or GSS.

The results of the study found that  “respondents who were acquainted with at least one gay or lesbian person in 2006 exhibited greater shifts toward increased acceptance of homosexuality and gay marriage in 2008 and 2010.” In 2006, only 45% of people with a gay or lesbian friend supported same-sex marriage, while in 2010, 61% of respondents did. In contrast, in 2006, only 22% of people who did not have a gay or lesbian friend supported same-sex marriage, and in 2010, the number actually decreased to 18%. 

DellaPosta hypothesized that people who only see LGBTQ people in a superficial setting, i.e. in a grocery store, may have their prejudices enforced, while people who take the extra step to get to know an LGBTQ person, whether it be just knowing their name or sitting down and talking to them, will be affected by the contact effect and reconsider their biases. 

DellaPosta also recognized the two-fold importance of coming out. The process of coming out can be very liberating for LGBTQ people but it can also help straight people connect with their LGBTQ friends or family members at a more personal level which may reduce prejudice. He also wants to see every gay doctor, lawyer, architect, etc. to come out to show the world that LGBTQ people aren't part of some out-group that is different, but people who are the same as everyone else. He believes that this will help straight people conquer their own bias and stereotypes of LGBTQ and reduce homophobia. He realizes, however, that not everyone who has a gay or lesbian friend will change their mind, but at a macro scale, the contact effect works. 

As a gay friend, reading about this made my Grinch-sized heart grow three sizes, as it made me realize that by just being myself, I could have and can continue to make a positive difference in how people think. You really never know how you can change someone's life by simply being a part of it, and I think that's beautiful. 

h/t: NBC

San Diego Pride Considers Donating $170K Worth Of Profits

San Diego Pride’s giving back, and it’s giving back a lot.

San Diego Pride has announced on Thursday that it will be donating more than $170,000 to 59 different LGBTQ-serving charities and organizations around the world.

According to Patch, San Diego Pride has so much money to spend after having a successful 2018 Pride. They now plan to give over that extra money back to LGBTQ people.

"San Diego Pride, its events and year-round programming are made possible by our over 30 LGBTQ-serving nonprofit community partners, 87 sponsors, 5,600 volunteer shifts, 22,000 volunteers hours, 45,000 Festival attendees, and 250,000 Parade attendees," San Diego Pride Executive Director Fernando Lopez said. "It is this collective effort that builds on the legacy of those who came before us that makes this level of philanthropy possible."

"Our giving will have a tangible impact on projects locally, nationally, and globally that support and sustain LGBTQ communities in a myriad of ways," added San Diego Pride's Director of Philanthropy Sarafina Scapicchio. "This year's grants will help create new LGBTQ youth programs, feed and house people living with HIV, fund multiple LGBTQ-focused performing arts projects, provide legal support for LGBTQ victims of sex trafficking, scholarships for transgender students, emergency housing for homeless LGBTQ people and so much more."

As for which organizations San Diego Pride will donate to, some organizations include Accra Pride, Associação de Educação do Homem de Amanhã de Brasília, Being Alive San Diego, Blindspot Collective, Breakthrough Workshop Theatre, Casa Ruby, Inc., and more.

San Diego Pride plans to donate to Pride Community Grants to fund youth programs, sobriety services, LGBTQ arts and culture programs, queer communities of color, transgender community support programs, and health and human services programs.

Check out the official press release for more info and the full list of recipients.

India's Citizens Rejoice At First Dehli Pride Since The Historic Supreme Court Ruling

LGBTQ residents and allies celebrated the decriminalization of homosexuality in India earlier today.

Just two months after India’s Supreme Court ruled that the colonial era law Section 377 was unconstitutional, the city of Dehli was graced with a joyous pride parade.

Thousands participated in India's first pride parade since that historic court ruling (though the 11th in history). Many marchers chanted “We Got Our Freedom” while waving rainbow flags or signs with messages like, “Love Wins.”

"It's the first time we are not marching as criminals," said parade organizer Deepti to AFP.

"People are marching with freedom and zero burden," she added.

Now with India joining 119 other countries who have all legalized homosexuality, parade participants are noticeably walking with a spring in their step.



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"This parade is about happiness, happiness and happiness," said participant Deepanshu Goswami to AFP.

"It will take one more generation for a social acceptance but the fear factor is gone. I'm enjoying my life as a free citizen now," he added.

Check out some photos from the event down below.



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Delhi Queer Pride 2018 #delhiqueerpride #delhipride #freedomtolove #human #loveisnotacrime #pride #freedom

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Pride Wall Vandalized in Houston

The pride wall, located at Jenni's Noodle House in Houston, Texas was recently vandalized with hurtful messages, according to The Houston Chronicle.

The vandal or vandals painted in black a large X and the words "stop your gay agenda" 

The wall was created after another pride wall, located at Select Skate Shop was painted over in black with the word "select" in rainbow letters to contrast the black background. Select Skate Shop said that the decision was made because the wall kept being vandalized and it became expensive to repaint it every time.

The owner of Jenni's Noodle House, which has three locations throughout Houston, Jenni Tran-Weaver "jumped at the chance" to have Houston's next pride wall on the side of her restaurant. The new wall contains all traditional pride colors along with bright colors meant to represent the entire LGBTQ+ spectrum. The words "Be Visible" as well as a quote from Jim Obergefell, the plaintiff in the Obergefell v. Hodges Supreme Court case can be seen on the wall. It's a shame that someone would ruin a beautiful wall with an equally beautiful message but I'm not entirely surprised. 

In response to the vandalism, Jenni's Noodle House asked if anyone knew who was responsible for the graffiti in a Facebook post. They also wrote "Hater gonna hate. Noodle gonna rule." So at least they're in good spirits after this vandalism. However, Jenni should be mindful of the fact that the wall may get vandalized again, as it frequently happened when the wall was at Select Skate Shop. It is my hope that they find who vandalized the wall and dish out the appropriate punishment. In this day and age, hating or "disapproving" of LGBTQ+ people is definitely passé and has no purpose; not that it ever did. 

h/t: The Houston Chronicle

Donations Abound in Iowa Library

After a book burning, in which a man burned rented LGBT-themed books in protest of a Pride event, hundreds of books have been donated to the Orange City Public Library, according to Des Moines Register.

Paul Dorr, the man who rented out and burned LGBT-themed books did so in protest of Orange City Pride, as he believes that LGBTQ people are immoral. Dorr does not plan on paying for or replacing the books, which could land him with a fine between $65 to $625 and 30 days in jail if convicted of the charge of fifth-degree theft. 

Dorr is hardly the first person to burn books and he won't be the last, unfortunately. Book burning and other forms of book censorship have historically been used to silence voices, with LGBT voices being frequently shut down. According to the American Library Association, in 2017, four out of the top ten challenged books contained LGBT themes, in 2016, five out of ten, and in 2015 three out of ten.

However, attitudes towards LGBT themes in literature may be changing, as multiple GoFundMe pages have been created to offset the loss of the books. Along with the GoFundMe pages, Justin Scott, the Iowa state director for American Atheists, set up a Facebook fundraiser in response to Dorr's book burning. The fundraiser raised over $1,000 within days. The Orange City Public Library told Scott to consider giving a portion of the funds to other local libraries and LGBT organizations. 

James Peron, president of Moorfield Storey Institute, said ghat he had shipped twenty LGBT-themed books to the library and he is planning on shipping more.

It's nice to know that the residents of Sioux County, one of the most conservative counties in Iowa, recognize that LGBT voices deserve to be heard and that there will be consequences to every action, and in this case, the good outweighed the bad. 

h/t: Des Moines Register, American Library Association