Vacationing in an Anti Gay Country

Author: , March 28th, 2016

Maldives

For three months I had been filled with pure excitement because my trip to the Maldives was finally booked. I spent hours on the internet looking at the wondrous beaches, fantastic hotels, and the pure idyllic paradise setting that made up the islands of the Maldives. Each island was more beautiful than the next but each had one thing in common. Each one was paradise. But each one was also anti-gay.

The Maldives is governed by Sharia Law which criminalises same-sex sexual acts between both men and women. The International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association states that for men ‘the punishment is banishment for nine months to one year or a whipping of 10 to 30 strokes, while the punishment for women is house arrest for nine months to one year.’

I immediately felt the moral dilemma as an LGBTI traveler. Did I want to go to a country where it was illegal to be gay? Would I even feel safe there? Is it wrong to spend my money in a country where I’m not even welcomed?

By David Calderon – Full Story at Gay Star News

Maldives Gay Travel Resources

Seven Tips for Traveling While Trans

Author: , October 9th, 2015

tsa_imaging

The recent tale of a transgender woman humiliated, demeaned, detained, delayed, and derailed by the Transportation Security Administration has struck fear into some trans travelers and validated the paranoia of others who vow not to travel (or avoid airports) so as to avoid a horror story of their own.

Well, as a trans woman who’s traveled the country by nearly every means available, I have something important to tell you: whatever happens, you’ll survive.

But I know from my own experience that bad things happen at the airport screening area all the time, ranging from the simply annoying to downright soul-crushing, as in the case of Shadi Petosky. Her friends and supporters created a hashtag on social media to help others share their experiences: #TravelingWhileTrans.

And let’s face it, airport insecurity is hardly a new phenomenon.

By Dawn Ennis – Full Story at The Advocate

What is Gay Friendly Travel?

Author: , September 18th, 2014

Gay Pride Flag San FranciscoI think we can all agree that the term “gay-friendly” and the increase in its usage is a good thing. It’s wonderful to see businesses that openly support and welcome LGBT customers. Unfortunately, bigotry is still pervasive and pops up every day in places you’d never expect. So a rainbow sticker or flag in a window can go a long way in making people feel safe.

But, what exactly does the term “gay-friendly” mean when it comes to travel? Does throwing the term into your hotel or resort listing mean that every member of your staff understands what that means in practice? Should you differentiate between gay-owned and gay-friendly? Where’s the line between marketing and philosophy?

As a brand new hotel owner, these are a few of the questions that have been on my mind lately and that I thought should be answered.

By Jay Deratany – Full Story at On Top Magazine

What is Gay Pride For?

Author: , June 21st, 2014

Gay Pride

June is Pride Month across the U.S., and the kickoff to a season of Pride. Every weekend from June through September, somewhere, the LGBT community amasses in official events and activities celebrating our diversity. And every year, about the same time, complaints about Pride will begin, too. Everyone has an opinion about what Pride should be — and should not be.

Some of these conversations are incredibly valuable as the big-tent community continues to consider what it is, where it is going and how it should be represented. Each voice contributing to this discussion provides a greater celebration of who and what we are as a collective of varied individuals coming together to celebrate us.

There are important questions that are worth asking in order to define what each community wants and needs Pride to be. What is Pride? Is it a parade? Is it a celebration? Is it a political demonstration? What are we saying — to each other, and to the non-LGBT community? How do we want to present ourselves? Who do we want to represent us? Are we represented?

These are all good questions. Unfortunately, some of the answers are not. The greatest rejection of the very idea of Gay Pride is typically expressed as: “Pride does not represent me.” That’s a valid feeling. It’s the specific objections — and suggested solutions — that so often include judgment of other parts of our community that are problematic.

By Emerson Collins – Full Story at The Dallas Voice

Who Owns Gay Pride?

Author: , June 18th, 2014

Rainbow FlagThere’s a lawsuit in New York City right now that asks the question, “Can one group own Gay Pride?”

Heritage of Pride, Inc., is a nonprofit organization in New York responsible for organizing the city’s annual Gay Pride Parade. In recent years, Heritage has expanded its reach to stage multiple events (dances, etc.) during June.

But Heritage isn’t, of course, the only group that organizes Pride events; gay promoters Brandon Voss and Jake Resnicow have been putting on Pride Month events since 2009. In 2011, Heritage filed a trademark claim to the phrase “NYC Pride,” and is now trying to enjoin Voss and Resnicow from using that term.

Full Story at the Dallas Voice

The Evolution of the Gay Pride Parade

Author: , June 12th, 2014

Gay Pride ParadeThe gay pride parade has become a popular vehicle for showcasing LGBT pride. An unabashed celebration, the parade is a living, breathing manifestation of the out-and-proud mantra, putting the LGBT community on full display.

However, the history of the parade comes from less celebratory roots, tied more to political activism and protests. Born out of necessity, it was a reaction to commemorate one of the most important events in gay rights history.

On June 28, 1969, a riot broke out at the Stonewall Inn, a gay club in downtown Manhattan. Police had been known to raid the club from time to time, but on that night, the patrons fought back. A protest broke out, with police and community members clashing through the night, and for the rest of the week. That was 45 years ago, and it was the spark that ignited the beginning of the gay rights movement, which has snowballed into a much larger movement for the entire LGBT community.

By Yohana Desta – Full Story at Mashable

Gay Pride: Watching the Defectives

Author: , June 2nd, 2014

Gay Pride SFLast Sunday at 12:30pm, I was in position on Christopher Street with Terrence, his glamor boys, and touring UK bloggers Dave and Darren. The Pride parade was due to round the corner any minute, but I tore off in search of a bodega, crossing my fingers that my desperate need for a soda wouldn’t cause me to miss Dykes On Bikes. Half a block away, I found a little place and ducked in, weaving through the customers clogging the aisles on rushed missions like mine. I was third in line, two bottles of Sprite under my arm, when the man in front of me spotted a friend entering the store.

“David! Sweetie! Where are you watching from? Come hang out with us on Allen’s balcony!”

David, a bookish looking middle-aged man, destroyed the festive mood in the little store in an instant. “Absolutely not. Those defectives and freaks?” he spat, indicating the colorful crowd outside the store, “They have nothing to do with MY life, thank you very much. This parade has as much dignity as a carnival freak show. It’s no wonder the whole country hates us.”

Luckily for David, the Asshole Killer mind ray I’ve been working on is not yet operational. I settled for pushing him a little, just a tiny bit, just to get by him in that narrow aisle, of course. I returned to my sweaty little group and tried to put what I’d heard out of my mind for the remainder of the day, because I knew that by the next morning, the thousands of Davids of the world, the ones who have media access anyway, would all issue their now familiar day-after-Pride rant. The one where they decry the drag queens on all those newspaper front pages. The one where they beat their chests and lament, “Why don’t the papers ever show the NORMAL gay people? Where are the bankers and lawyers? Why must all the coverage be drag queens and leather freaks in assless chaps?”

Full Story at Joe.My.God