Lesbian tennis legend Billie Jean King has spoken out against Florida governor Ron DeSantis over the state’s ‘Don’t Say Gay’ law.
King who was in Florida for the 2023 Billie Jean King Cup on Friday (14 April), spoke out against the state’s ‘Don’t Say Gay’ law – which bars public schools from teaching about LGBT+ topics and gender identity from kindergarten through third grade .
“If you heard my personal journey, which I thought I was straight, I realized later in life I wasn’t. I had to figure out who am I, who is my authentic self. Going through that journey just for me personally, the important thing is to be welcoming to everyone. I have no control over what the governor is doing. He probably has gay kids in his family. He’ll say he doesn’t probably, but I bet he does. Most people have gay relatives, even if they don’t know it. I’m about inclusion. I think you should have different people on the (school) board. Shouldn’t just be the people like you, that look like you, think like you. I think it’s important to have people who think differently. That’s how you really win.
The Biden administration’s press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre called DeSantis’ plan to extend the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ law “completely, utterly wrong”. “Make no mistake, this is part of a disturbing and dangerous trend we’re seeing across the country, of legislation that [is] anti-LGBTQI+, anti-trans, in a way we have not seen in some time. We’re talking about students, we’re talking about educators, we’re talking about individuals.”
1. Many new sites will lazily call King “queer”. Billie Jean King openly identifies as a Lesbian and should be noted as such. Not “queer’. PLEASE be respectful of how people identify.
2. BJK should really push for her tournament to be moved out of Florida permanently.
Tennis legend Billie Jean King, who will be part of the official US delegation to the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics is now saying that athletes should not protest for LGBT rights at the games citing Rule 50 of the Olympic Charter, which bans political demonstrations by participants.
“I don’t want any athlete getting in trouble.” King said. “Before I knew about Rule 50, I thought it would be sweet to wave some flags or something. But they can get in big trouble and have their medal taken away and also be sent home.”
King said she’ll walk in the opening ceremony, attend ice hockey and figure skating events and meet US athletes during her three-day visit to the Games.
“I’m all excited about meeting different athletes and watching them do what they do,” King said in an AP interview “The Olympics is foremost about the athletes coming together, and they have worked so hard for this moment to be representing their country and competing.
“That’s the essence of what it’s about.”
“Maybe we’ll help the LGBT community in Russia, I hope there will be a connection for them and help them not feel alone and disenfranchised,” King continued: “Personally, I hope it helps the movement take another step forward so people will realise we’re just like everybody else. It should be a non-issue. It’s just like people of colour in our country and other places, it has to be a non-issue. I just think it’s important that we’re seen and we’re out and we’re free,” King said. “I hope that I’ll meet people, maybe in Russia, who are concerned and have discussions. There’s nothing like meeting people in person and just listening to them and exchanging information and building relationships. The Russian people have always been so wonderful to me, personally.”
Yes Billie Jean the medals are so much more important than the violence, persecution, and human rights abuses against members of your own community in Russia.
April 28 1977 – Florida Governor Reubin Askew asks Miami voters to rescind a recently passed ray rights ordinance saying, “I would not want a known homosexual teaching my children. Askew was an ally of Florida Orange Juice spokesperson Anita Bryant, who conducted an anti-gay crusade and signed legislation prohibiting any gay or lesbians in Florida from adopting children.
April 28th, 1990 – Over 1000 people attend Queer Nation’s first major demonstration. Queer Nation founded by AIDS activists from ACT UP mobilized over a 1000 protesters in a matter of hours outside Uncle Charlie’s Downtown in NYC responding to pipe bomb which exploded at about 12:10 A.M injuring 3 men in the very popular Greenwich Village gay bar and marched their way to the NYPD’s 6th Precinct, blocking traffic.
Five years later in 1995 it was discovered that an extremist radical Muslim terrorist ring led by El Sayyid Nosair who was convicted of involvement in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing was responsible for the pipe bomb attack
April 29, 1933 – Singer Rod McKuen is born in Oakland, California. His “new age” songs made him a celebrity in the late 60s. He told an interviewer “I have had sex with men. Does that make me gay?”
After moving to Paris, Stein met Alice B. Toklas in 1907; she called her “Pussy” and Gertrude was “Lovey” to Alice. Their apartment on the Rue de Fleurus became a famous meeting place for artists and writers.
During the period Toklas and Stein were together, they frequently exchanged love letters. Alice was an early riser, and Gertrude, who wrote late into the night, left her tender, passionate notes to cheer up her mornings. “Baby precious Hubby worked and / loved his wifey, sweet sleepy wifey, / dear dainty wifey, baby precious sleep,” Stein once rhymed.
Toklas gained wide attention with the publication of The Autobiogrphy of Alice B. Toklas (1933), which is actually Gertrude Stein’s memoirs. It records Toklas’s first-person observations of Stein’s life and her friends, among them Ernest Hemingway, Sherwood Anderson, Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, and Georges Braque.
The Alice B. Toklas Cookbook came out when Toklas was 77. It contained 300 recipes and became famous because of one special dish, Toklas’s Haschich Fudge (“which anyone could whip up on a rainy day,” as she wrote),
May 1, 1974 – Studio One disco opens in West Hollywood, CA. Started in an old WW2-era bomb-sight manufacturing building, Studio One has a long history that played a big part in the lives, politics and gay rights movement.
May 1, 1974 – Gay activists march in Portugal for the first time, demanding an end to the country’s sodomy laws and a repeal of all statutes that discriminate against gays and lesbians.
May 1, 1975 – Maine Legislators decriminalize homosexuality between consenting adults by repealing its sodomy laws.
May 1, 1975 – Published reports confirm that Paul Newman is having financing trouble with his attempt to bring The Front Runner, a 1974 novel by Patricia Nell Warren. considered now to be a classic of LGBT literature to the big screen. Newman eventually allows his option to lapse.
May 1, 1976 – Christopher Street magazine a gay-orientedmagazine published in New York City, New York debuts. Known both for its serious discussion of issues within the gay community and its satire of anti-gay criticism, it was one of the two most-widely read gay-issues publications in the USA. Christopher Street covered politics and culture and its aim was to become a gay New Yorker. Christopher Street printed 231 issues before closing its doors in December 1995.
May 2, 1895 – Lorenz Hart was born in New York. Richard Rogers wrote the perfect scores for Hart’s words. They became some of the best songs of the ’20s and ’30s. It was a closely guarded secret he was gay. No one knew until a biography came out 30 years after his death.
May 2, 1972 – J. Edgar Hoover dies, and leaves the bulk of his estate to Clyde Tolson, his “companion” of over 40 years. To this day no one really knows th truth if Hoover was gay or not. But for LGBT history’s sake lets hope that it wasn’t so.
May 3, 1912 – Writer May Sarton is born in Wendelgem, Belgium. The writer of some of the most lyric poetry of the 20th century. Satron didn’t see herself as a “lesbian” writer, instead wanting to touch on what is universally human about love in all its manifestations. When publishing her novel Mrs. Stevens Hears the Mermaids Singing in 1965, she feared that writing openly about lesbianism would lead to a diminution of the previously established value of her work. “The fear of homosexuality is so great that it took courage to write a novel about a woman homosexual who is not a sex maniac, a drunkard, a drug-taker, or in any way repulsive” wrote Sarton in Journal of a Solitude. After the book’s release, many of Sarton’s works began to be studied in university level Women’s Studies classes, being embraced by feminists and lesbians alike
May 3, 1989 – Christine Jorgenson, pioneering transsexual, dies of cancer at age sixty-two. Jorgensen was the first person to become widely known in the United States for having sex reassignment surgery—in this case, male to female.
Jorgensen grew up in the Bronx area of New York and upon returning to New York after military service and increasingly concerned over (as one obituary called it at the time) her “lack of male physical development” Jorgensen heard about sex reassignment surgery, and began taking the female hormone ethinyl estradiol on her own. She researched the subject with the help of Dr. Joseph Angelo, a husband of one of Jorgensen’s friends.
Jorgensen had intended to go to Sweden, where at the time the only doctors in the world performing this surgery were located. During a stopover in Copenhagen to visit relatives, however, she met Dr. Christian Hamburger, a Danish endocrinologist and specialist in rehabilitative hormonal therapy. Jorgensen stayed in Denmark, and under Dr. Hamburger’s direction, was allowed to begin hormone replacement therapy. She then got special permission from the Danish Minister of Justice to undergo the series of operations for sex re-assignment.
Jorgensen chose the name Christine in honor of Dr. Hamburger and she became the most famous and outspoken figures and for transsexual and transgender community.
May 4, 1993 – “Angels in America: Millennium Approaches” opens on Broadway. Millenium Approaches is part one of Angels in America: A Gay Fantasia on National Themes the Pulitzer Prize-winning play in two parts by American playwright Tony Kushner.
The two parts of the play are separately presentable and entitled Millennium Approaches and Perestroika, respectively and have been made into both a television miniseries and an opera by Peter Eötvös.
Angels in America received numerous awards, including the 1993 and 1994 Tony Awards for Best Play. The play’s first part, Millennium Approaches, received the 1993 Pulitzer Prize for Drama.
The play garnered much praise upon its release for its dialogue and exploration of social issues. “Mr. Kushner has written the most thrilling American play in years,” wrote The New York Times and decade after the play’s premier, Metro Weekly labeled it “one of the most important pieces of theater to come out of the late 20th century.”