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This Way Out Radio Episode #1893: Justice and D’Arcy Drollinger, Drag Laureate (Part 2)


San Francisco Drag Laureate D’Arcy Drollinger talks about the perspective to be gained by blowing up masculine and feminine identities, and how he’s creating an Oasis for the art form (Part 2 of a two-part interview with Eric Jansen of “Out In The Bay” outinthbay.org ).


And in NewsWrap: more than a hundred people skirt the governor’s ban on Istanbul LGBTQ Pride by crossing to the Asian side of the city, Santiago’s peaceful Pride Parade is assaulted by a mob of hooded thugs, Romania’s largest celebration of LGBTQ Pride brings thousands to the streets of Bucharest and spreads to several other cities, pro-Palestinian protests impact Pride events in the U.S. and Canada, the daughter of Cameroon President Paul Biya comes out and becomes an outlaw in her country, the Tennessee-based Tractor Supply Company beats its former progressive policies down with a shovel, and more international LGBTQ news reported this week by Tanya Kane-Parry and David Hunt (produced by Brian DeShazor).


All this on the July 8, 2024 edition of This Way Out!

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Complete Program Summary`
for the week of July 8, 2024

Justice and D’Arcy Drollinger, Drag Laureate (Part 2)


NewsWrap (full transcript below): More than a hundred activists briefly defy government bans again to march with LGBTQ Pride in Istanbul, but Turkish security police arrest more than a dozen as the crowd attempts to disperse … thugs attack peaceful Pride-goers in the Chilean capital of Santiago causing injuries and property damage, but it was all celebration on the same day in Concepcion … organizers of the 19th edition of Bucharest Pride call it Romania’s largest-ever … pro-Palestinian protesters of the Israel-Hamas War disrupt Pride parades in a number of cities, including Toronto, Philadelphia, Boston, Denver, and New York City … while more than 50 people are arrested in post-Pride Parade melees in Chicago’s “Boystown” neighborhood … Brenda Biya, the daughter of Cameroon’s President Paul Biya, comes out with Pride on Instagram in photos of her kissing her Brazilian model girlfriend Layyons Valença … queer farmers and ranchers express shock and betrayal — and consider a monetary response — to the total reversal of pro-queer diversity-equity-inclusion policies and actions by the agricultural product and home improvement retailer Tractor Supply Company (written by GREG GORDON and LUCIA CHAPPELLE, produced by BRIAN DeSHAZOR with production assistance by DANIEL HUECIAS, reported this week by TANYA KANE-PARRY and DAVID HUNT).


Feature: We met San Francisco Drag Laureate D’Arcy Drollinger behind the scenes of his public role last week, where he told Out In The Bay’s ERIC JANSEN how it all began. Before returning to that intimate conversation, we sample D’Arcy onstage, streaming live from his drag and trans haven nightspot, Oasis. The world’s first Drag Laureate and Eric Jansen’s conversation then turns to the ugly targeting of drag shows in the creativity-stifling culture wars (Eric Jansen and Porfirio Rangel co-produced Out In The Bay’s interview with San Francisco Drag Laureate D’Arcy Drollinger. David Kwan did the sound design and audio editing for the original interview, which is online at outinthebay,org; we added music by THE VILLAGE PEOPLE and CYNDI LAUPER).


Feature: Brief teases and promo for next week’s Part 1 of DAVID HUNT’s special two-part series Working While Queer 2024.


NewsWrap

A summary of some of the news in or affecting
global LGBTQ communities
for the week ending July 6th, 2024
Written by Greg Gordon and Lucia Chappelle,
reported this week by Tanya Kane-Parry and David Hunt,
produced by Brian DeShazor with technical assistance by Daniel Huecias.

[SOUND: speaker and crowd]

    More than a hundred people defied the governor of Istanbul’s ban on LGBTQ Pride June 30th with several arrests.  Public Pride events have been officially banned since 2015 in the Turkish city that once hosted of one of the region’s largest celebrations. Authorities say Pride had to be shut down due to concerns over “security and public sensitivities.”

This year organizers tried to avoid direct confrontations with police by leaving their fenced off former home on Istiklal Avenue in Taksim Square. Instead they crossed the Bosphorus strait that divides the continents to hold an impromptu action in Istanbul’s Asian side. They marched briefly along Bagdad Avenue waving rainbow flags and chanting liberation slogans.  Organizers read a statement criticizing the increased “polarization” of the country before quickly disbanding as security police arrived.  About 15 people were unable to escape the authorities. They’ve all since been released.

The emergence of Turkey’s far-right authoritarian President Recep Tayyipt Erdogan in 2003 signaled the end of Pride celebrations.  Istanbul’s governor warned in May this year that his office would not allow “various illegal groups” to hold unauthorized events.

A statement posted to social media by the organizers read, in part, “Today, you closed down Istiklal, blocked all roads and squares leading to it. You halted life in a whole city… But you forgot one thing: if necessary, we can pierce through stones, bend time, and once again find each other in our smiles. … We never tire of deceiving the police, forcing them to deal with us.” The statement ended in all caps with, GET USED TO IT, WE ARE EVERYWHERE.”


   Thousands of peaceful and colorful Pride Parade participants were making merry in the streets of Santiago, Chile on June 29th – that is until hooded thugs broke through security fences and assaulted them. The attackers punched and kicked the Pride-goers and threw stones and paint at floats, according to the Washington Blade. Parade infrastructure was also damaged.

The Movement for Homosexual Integration and Liberation organizes the Parade. MOVIHL is Chile’s leading queer advocacy group. Their spokesperson Javiera Zúñiga told the Blade that the attack was an aberration from what’s normally a joyous and peaceful event. She said, “What we are basically asking is that anyone who has seen something and can recognize any of the aggressors (contact us) through our social networks so that we can file complaints and do whatever is necessary to find those responsible.”

There were no disturbances reported at the LGBTQ+ Pride march for diversity in Concepcion, Chile the same day.


[SOUND: marchers chanting]

    It was the largest celebration of LGBTQ love Romania has ever had, according to organizers of the nineteenth annual Bucharest Pride. The Pride march on June 29th capped a series of events that began on the 21st.  An estimated 27,000 people waving rainbow flags and chanting pro-queer slogans marched the length of Calea Victoriei, the city’s major thoroughfare.  Contingents included representatives of at least 25 foreign embassies and the European Commission. A handful of anti-LGBTQ protestors were forcefully removed by police. Those opponents of Pride had held a March of Normality earlier in the day.

The Bucharest Pride festival is organized by the queer advocacy group ACCEPT. They said companion Pride events were held in the Romanian cities of Cluj, Lasi, Oradea and Timisoara.


   The horror in Gaza hung over Pride celebrations in a number of cities.

Pro-Palestinian protestors succeeded in shutting down Toronto’s June 30th Pride Parade.  More than two dozen people blocked the forward movement of the procession about three and a half hours after it had begun.  After about 45 minutes of the logjam, organizers announced the cancellation of the rest of the Parade in the interests of “public safety.”

Pro-Palestinian demonstrators held placards reading “No Pride in genocide” at Philadelphia’s June 2nd march, but the barricade was only temporary. There was a similar action in Denver.  At least three people were arrested at Boston’s Parade on June 8th when pro-Palestinian protestors clashed with police.

Where the modern-day queer liberation movement was born in New York City, occasional rain and anti-war disruptions combined to damper the annual celebration down Fifth Avenue on June 30th.  Russia’s war on Ukraine was also an issue for Pride-goers.  Thousands sought a return to the roots of Pride at the sixth annual Queer Liberation March in lower Manhattan on the same day.

Fifty-three people including nine juveniles were arrested in Chicago’s Lakeview neighborhood just hours after that city’s Pride Parade.  The charges range from aggravated battery of a transit employee or police officer to property crimes. At least four firearms were also confiscated. Authorities say rowdy celebrants or anti-queer thugs seem to be an indelible part of the Windy City’s Parade after-parties.


    Brenda Biya celebrated Pride month with a coming out announcement on Instagram on June 30th. The problem is that she’s the daughter of President Paul Biya of Cameroon, where same-gender sex is illegal.

The 26-year-old Cameroonian first daughter shared a picture of her kissing girlfriend Brazilian model Layyons Valença

with the caption “I’m crazy about you and I want the world to know.” Brenda is also featured in Valença’s TikTok videos.

Same-gender sex is punishable by up to five years in prison and a fine in the Central African nation.  In addition to the harsh societal taboos, the country’s National Communications Council banned broadcast media depictions of homosexuality last year.

President Biya has not publicly reacted to his daughter’s news to date.  One person wondered in a social media post if the country’s anti-queer laws are only “for the poor.”   Brenda replied, “Nobody will have anything to say because only love shall win. … I don’t condone hate, I think the mentality should change, but it will change once the people are ready."


    Finally, Tractor Supply Company is plowing over all of the pro-queer initiatives that had been a proud part of its diversity, equity and inclusion programs. The Brentwood, Tennessee-based U.S. agricultural product and home improvement company ended Pride month with a social media post bowing to a concerted effort by far-right groups to reverse course. The company’s statement says it will now “focus on rural America priorities including ag education and veteran causes, and stop sponsoring nonbusiness activities like pride festivals and voting campaigns.”

Tractor Supply will end its cooperation with the national U.S. advocacy group Human Rights Campaign, which had given the company high ratings for its queer support and inclusiveness.

Ersatz film director turned conservative activist Robby Starbuck led a three-week online campaign against what he called the Tractor Supply “woke agenda.”

That canceled “woke agenda” also includes Tractor Supply’s stated goal to “cut carbon emissions by 20 percent by 2025” and to achieve “net zero emissions across all operations by 2040.”

Don Martin is one of a group of queer farmers and ranchers organizing a boycott of Tractor Supply.  Martin and his husband co-own a 10-acre horse training and boarding facility in Illinois.  He told The Advocate that he felt personally betrayed. He said, “We didn’t ask for special treatment -- just respect and inclusion.”

Martin is just one voice in a growing chorus of queer former Tractor Supply customers saying, “We won’t support businesses that don’t support us. … Our dollars have power, and we need to use them wisely.”


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