by Ryan Shea

Instagram can be used for multiple reasons. It gives us the opportunity to take a peek into the lives of celebrities we adore, check up on our friends and loved ones and double tap a bunch of guys we find irresistibly hot.

Then there’s The AIDS Memorial page, which in my opinion is an account that any and everybody should be following on the popular social media platform.

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I landed on it a while ago and was blown away by the stories people shared about their loved ones who tragically passed of AIDS. Every post is different but each comes with enough emotions to make someone (present company included) cry their eyes out as they read about several subjects and the impact they made on this world prior to their unfortunate passing. …


by Isabella Zollner

Eight years ago in one of the biggest PR disasters for any fast food restaurant, it became publicly known that Chick-Fil-A’s multi million dollar ‘charity’ campaigns were funding organizations known to be hostile towards the LGBTQ+ community. In an aggressive and unusual move, the Chick-Fil-A president Dan Cathy doubled down on the company’s “traditional marriage” ideals. This sparked nationwide protests and boycotts, even in Southern states (which make up most of Chick-Fil-A’s sales). However, because of former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee’s public support for Chick-Fil-A, their sales actually rose 12%. Mike Huckabee and other Republican elected officials created a Chick-Fil-A Day and restaurants across the country saw their orders rise past capacity. Their sales rose to 4.6 …


by Sassafras Lowrey

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This year, Thanksgiving is looking a little bit different. Because of the pandemic, many of us aren’t having to spend the holiday with extended family. But if you find yourself having to spend Thanksgiving around your immediate family you live with, and if they aren’t supportive, that can be challenging. You might also be in a position of having to navigate ZOOMgiving or other video conferencing over the Thanksgiving table with relatives who are less supportive or welcoming. …


by Madison Rose

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Civil engagement is a vital aspect of our democracy. And with the Trump era coming to a close, we cannot take for granted the victories we have acquired and we should not ignore the victories which we have yet to accomplish. There is still so much work to be done, for the LGBTQIA+ community, for the Black Lives Matter movement, for gun safety initiatives, for climate change, for feminism, and more. Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are not our saving graces for these issues. We need to stay mobilized for the issues we hold dear to our hearts so that politicians do not merely use those issues for the hashtags they need to get themselves elected. We have to add action to their promises. …


by Isabella Zollner

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Maybe your state’s governor has been easing up on COVID-19 restrictions. Maybe your friends have been throwing parties where masks are only suggested. Maybe your place of work doesn’t even require masks anymore. You’re starting to feel safer, not because the number of cases are going down (they aren’t) but because everyone else is letting their guard down. No one wants to be the only person who doesn’t think that it’s safe to get together. This is all starting to feel normal and so you’re letting things slide. …


by Kris Barz

Our drag queen superhero tackles another issue.

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About the Artist:

Krisa Gonna is a comic series created by illustrator Kris Barz. All of his characters are part of the LGBTQIA community. The stories are about friendships, relationships, work, family, sexism, prejudice and the strips touch those issues with irony, comedy and a little bit of sarcasm.

The webcomic is an independent project and the official website is live. Go to www.outandaboutcomics.com and check it out!


by Christine Kinori

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2020 has been one of the worst years marked with so much loss and pain, but for the American transgender community, it has also been their most violent year yet. This year alone more than 37 transgender people have been violently killed — that we know of. This is alarming given that these are only a few of the violent deaths that have been officially reported, most of these cases are often mis-reported or unreported.

In his speech early today, President-Elect Biden vowed to protect the rights of the Transgender community. This is a welcomed change of events given how the incumbent government led by Trump has been going out of their way to strip the LGBTQ+ community their rights. Biden recognizes this issue for what it is: a matter of human rights.


by Ryan Cassata

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TIP ONE:

use the right pronouns. these are required pronouns. they are survival. if you mess up, apologize and correct yourself. if you don’t know someone’s pronouns kindly ask “What pronouns honor you?” or “I use she/her, what pronouns do you use?”

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TIP TWO:

don’t assume a trans person’s sexuality. know that gender identity and sexuality are two different things. while they do intersect, they do not determine each other. a trans person can be of any sexuality. avoid thinking/saying things like “why’d you transition to a guy just to be gay? wouldn’t it have been easier to just be straight?”

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TIP THREE:

be an open ear, a great listener, a shoulder to cry on, and someone to lean on. trans people go through a lot. sometimes we need to vent, sometimes we need validation from our friends, sometimes we just need someone to be there for us. be that person. check in on your trans friends. stay connected. stay supportive. …


by Christine Kinori

Two weeks ago, the world waited with baited breath to see who America would choose as their next leader. As expected, the election was quite the political duel between Trump and Biden. In the end, Biden came out as the winner and is set to be the 46th President of America. Unfortunately, Trump is not ready to accept defeat and is still refusing to concede.

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via Bloomberg

This reminds me of something most African leaders do when they lose in an election. They refuse to concede and become the bitter loser who drags all the people they can bring down with them. Back in 2017, many people took to the streets in Kenya to protests — citing election fraud and it got really bad. Many people lost their lives, fighting for their leader. It was a tense time which was marred with heavy violence in most of the opposition strongholds. Many people died during their encounter with Kenyan Defence Forces who were deployed to maintain peace in these opposition strongholds. Others died, simply because they were in the wrong place at the wrong time. I still remember when protesters in the slums decided to attack the police who retaliated by opening fire. …


Top Expert Weighs In — by Ryan Shea

Saturday, November 7th was a historic day for millions of people across the world when it was announced that Joe Biden had become our president elect after beating current POTUS Donald Trump.

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We were also in a state of pure joy and happiness due to Kamala Harris becoming our first female Vice President ever (not to mention first Black VP and first South Asian VP). It was the first time many of us felt hope after a four-year nightmare that looked like it was never going to end.
Well, it has, or it will in a short period of time when Biden is expected to be sworn in on January 20, 2021. So what does this mean for the LGBTQ community with him and Harris coming into power?

About

MatthewsPlace.com

MatthewsPlace.com is a program of the Matthew Shepard Foundation| Words by & for LGBTQ+ youth | #EraseHate | Want to submit? Email sara@matthewshepard.org

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