From the March-April 2015 issue of News & Letters
Lesbian teenager Jessie Hernandez was shot and killed by police in Denver on Jan. 26. Her supporters held a vigil that night, then demanded of District Attorney Morrissey that the investigation into her killing be transparent. Denver Freedom Riders, an anti-racist group, chanted, “Jessie’s life matters!” at the police station of the officers, Greene and Jordan, who killed her. The NAACP’s September 2014 report, Born Suspect: Stop-and-Frisk Abuses & the Continued Fight to End Racial Profiling in America, reveals that Queer people of color are most at risk for police profiling.
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The China LGBT Awareness Campaign bravely launched the “Love Is Not A Choice” ad campaign just before Valentine’s Day. The campaign streams ads on social media sites, showing actual same-sex couples doing ordinary things. The ad reads, “Love is not a choice. We did not choose to be homosexual. We just are. Happily, the world is big enough for all of us.” The text for photos of straight couples reads, “We did not choose to be heterosexual.”
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The Tennessee Trans Justice Project has a mission to “shine a light on inequalities suffered by the transgender community, including: barriers to healthcare, discriminatory hiring practices, violence and assault.” The Project’s first major event was a Visibility March in Legislative Plaza in Nashville on Feb. 22 to increase Trans visibility, bringing awareness to Trans people who were murdered or who committed suicide.
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Michael Mason, a pioneer of British GLBT journalism, died the weekend of Jan. 31. Mason was news editor at Gay News from 1972 until the early 1980s, and then founded Capital Gay, which ran from 1981 until 1995. Capital Gay’s reporting on the HIV pandemic and advice on safer sex is credited with saving the lives of many people, Queer and straight.