Lez Dish It OUT! AfterEllen’s LGBT Weekly Round-Up

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Photo: Human Rights Campaign, Instagram, The Today Show, Facebook

Photo: Human Rights Campaign, Instagram, The Today Show, Facebook, NASA

Happy belated International Women’s Day! I hope you celebrated March 8 with women you love and admire. If you missed our Editor-In-Chief’s A Day Without Women letter, check out the thought-provoking piece HERE.

This week I have a handful of stories which will restore your faith in humanity, some cool news about Sally Ride, and I also reveal what inspired Kristen Stewart to get a buzz cut. It’s a buffet of lady lovin’ goodness up in here!

Photo: Giphy

LEGO To Honor Sally Ride

Photo: NASA

Photo: NASA

Almost five years after the lesbian astronaut’s death, LEGO announced its plans to honor her incredible legacy alongside four other female pioneers at NASA. The “Women of NASA” set was designed by MIT News Deputy Editor Maia Weinstock and features Katherine Johnson (NASA mathematician) Margaret Hamilton (computer scientist), Mae Jemison (first African-American woman in space in 1992), Nancy Grace Roman ( NASA exec and astronomer).

Check out the pro-women set below:

Screen Shot 2017-03-09 at 8.27.31 AM

Photo: LEGO

What’s especially cool is, Maia’s project beat out 11 other fan creations and received 10,000 public votes in just fifteen days. You can watch the announcement of her win below:

Weinstock went on to say:

“I hope that ‘Women of NASA’ will be one little extra brick in the wall of trying to improve how women are perceived and shown in books, toys, and family programming. Anything I can do to help make sure girls understand that they can and should be interested in the sciences, engineering, and math, that is my goal. At the end of the day, that’s why I am doing this.”

Keep your eyes out for the set in late 2017 or early 2018!

Kristen Stewart Explains Why She Shaved Her Head & Discusses The Implications Of Her “So Gay” Moment On SNL

Photo: The Today Show

Photo: Today Show

As you’ve already probably noticed, Kristen is now rocking a shaved head. While the 26-year-old has tried out numerous hairstyles over the years, this is by far her boldest and most talked about look. The drastic change also happens to follow her“I’m so gay!” declaration on SNL last month, which could be a mere coincidence or a decision designed to remind us that she doesn’t care about the square peg that is Hollywood.

In a conversation with the Today Show on Thursday, K.Stew got candid on the real reason for cutting her locks. Before you watch the clip below, see what our  Editor-In-Chief had to say about the buzz cut HERE.

P.S. Kristen discusses her hair around the 59 second mark.

Welp, it sounds like this decision was a mix of practicability and sheer novelty.

Moving on…

In a chat with The Guardian, the celeb broached the subject of “coming out”. I found the quotes to be a bit convoluted, and I think this has to do with Kristen’s continued struggle to find a proper footing with her sexuality… despite her I’m So Gay moment.

When the interviewer pressed Stewart about her perceived role as an LGBTQ icon, she responded:

“… I mean, it’s hard to talk about. I don’t want to seem presumptuous, because everyone has their own experience. The whole issue of sexuality is so grey. I’m just trying to acknowledge that fluidity, that greyness, which has always existed. But maybe only now are we allowed to start talking about it.”

The Personal Shopper star added:

“Oh, I think things are changing. I mean, I don’t think I would have approached my life differently if that hadn’t been the case. But who knows? Individually we are all part of that change and so I can take some credit for it, I guess – there’s no reason why I should shy away from that. But all the prejudice; it’s going for sure. I mean, yeah, it’s definitely still there. People still have some horrendous fucking experiences. But it’s cool that you don’t have to nail everything down any more. That whole certainty about whether you’re straight or gay or whatever. You’re not confused if you’re bisexual. It’s not confusing at all. For me, it’s quite the opposite.”

Thoughts?

Brandi Burgess Talks To The Human Rights Campaign About Why She Came Out

Photo: Donja Dryden

Photo: Donja Dryden

I first covered Brandi’s story in a January round-up and I’m happy to highlight her story again. For those who missed my last post on Burgess, she’s the daughter of ultra-conservative and Alabama based radio host Rick Burgess. Rick essentially disowned and publicly shamed Brandi after she announced her bisexuality in an emotional op-ed.

Once Ms. Burgess’ piece went viral, the Human Rights Campaign of Alabama decided to chat with her about coming out to Rick and her hopes for the future. I particularly like this quote from Brandi: “It’s dangerous when we live in boxes and shadows.” Yup.

Watch the interview below:

As for Mr. Burgess, he had this to say:

“I told (Brandi) before and I’ll say it again you’re my daughter and I will always love you. But I love you enough to tell you the truth. I’m not going to come up with some version of love that really isn’t love at all, that pats you on the back to justify you all the way to hell.”

How charming…

HSBC Bank CEO Walks Lesbian Employee Down The Aisle After Her Homophobic Dad Declines The Honor

Photo: YouTube

Photo: YouTube

There are so many sweet aspects of this story I don’t even know where to start.

The logistics: Jennifer and Sam date for eleven years before they decide to get married on November 13, 2016. The two could not be more perfect or happy together. In fact, the seemingly fated couple even share the same birthday.

The problem? Same-sex marriage is illegal in Taiwan and Jen’s dad refuses to participate in his lesbian daughter’s wedding.

The solution? Jennifer’s boss at HSBC Bank Taiwan, John Li, decides to step in for the ceremonious walk down the aisle. Not only does John want to send a strong message about LGBTQ acceptance, but he also wants Jennifer to feel loved and valued on her wedding day. As for the legal side of things, the two settle for a symbolic ceremony.

The result? Jen and Sam have an incredible day full of love and create wonderful memories:

The current state of my eyes:

Photo: Blogspot

Jane Lynch Opens Up About Her Web Series Dropping The Soap

Screen Shot 2017-03-09 at 2.27.55 PM

Photo: Dekkoo

Jane Lynch is back… with a web series!

Dropping The Soap follows the cast of a failing soap opera as they try to revive their failing careers  Jane plays a harsh executive producer brought on by the show to get the stars in line and let’s just say things don’t go as planned.

The lesbian icon said of the project:

“I think it’s just a great workplace comedy. It’s about a really interesting subject; soap operas have lost their glow and their shine. All of us growing up loved soap operas. I was an All My Children fan, and I watched General Hospital every single day. It’s definitely a form that is no longer as relevant as it was back then. It’s almost as if stay-at-home moms don’t exist anymore. It’s really hard to keep them on the air, so this is about a bunch of people who are fighting for their lives to stay relevant.”

The series JUST premiered on the gay streaming service Dekkoo and is also available on Google Play, Roku, and iTunes. Check out the trailer below:

Will you be tuning in?

Dad Gifts His Daughter With A Sweet Coming Out Present

Photo: Twitter

Photo: Twitter

This is one of those diamond in the rough type of stories.

Earlier this week, a 15-year-old teen from Texas named Nevaeh Sotelo shared an adorable anecdote about her  accepting and incredible dad Robert Sotelo. Per Buzzfeed News, Nevaeh first came out as a lesbian in October of 2015, an announcement which elevated the already strong bond she shared with her dad. Most recently, Robert gifted Nev with a rainbow umbrella to remind her of his enduring love and support.

Photo: Twitter

Photo: Twitter

nev

Photo: Twitter

Mr. Sotelo explained:

“I bought it for her because I know at her age it’s hard to be accepted in this cruel world we live in and not one moment do I want my daughter to forget that her dad loves her no matter what. I want her to know on those stormy and rainy days as she’s holding up that umbrella that I am there to protect her just like the umbrella is there to protect her from the rain.”

So. Many. Emotions.

Nevaeh said of her dad:

“My dad is a strong believer in equality, as am I. He knows that everyone should be treated with the same respect no matter your gender, sexuality, race, or anything in between. He definitely is brave. He’s not afraid to speak up about things either.”

What an awesome family! Hopefully more parents of LGBTQ teens follow suit.

Lesbian Launches App For LGBTQ Christians

bible

Photo: Facebook

As someone who isn’t remotely religious, I really admire members of the LGBTQ community who have created unique ways for their faith and sexuality to coexist. Last week I discussed Glitter Ash Wednesday, a pro-LGBTQ take on the first day of Lent. This week I have some news about “Our Bible” app, a “meditation app for LGBTQ Christians, their friends, family and allies” set to launch in June 2017. The app was designed by lesbian Crystal Cheatham, a longtime activist who is committed to celebrating and creating a safe space for LGBTQ Christians. “Our Bible” will provide LGBTQ Christians the opportunity to chat with one another, will offer pro-women and LGBTQ devotionals, and a bevvy of inspirational videos/podcasts to boot.

Speaking on her inspiration to invent the app, Crystal explains:

“I’m black, I’m a lesbian, and I’m tired of feeling like my faith doesn’t matter. Some think it’s an anomaly that a black lesbian can be a Christian, but there are many out there like me, not just gay but those who are pro-choice and Christian, anti-Trump and Christian and interfaith and Christian.”

Check out a preview of “Our Bible” below:

Photo: Our Bible

Photo: Our Bible

Cheatham elaborated on the app’s premise:

“I believe in popular education, that’s why I’m accepting daily devotionals from anyone willing to sit down and pen one. This app is for all identities, not just those who fit into the white, heteronormative mold that has fed conservative Christianity for so long. I believe spirituality is a spectrum and I want to create something for those who have been harmed by the church and for those who still fiercely love it.”

Learn more about the app HERE.

Kate McKinnon Parodies Jeff Sessions On SNL

Photo: NBC

Photo: NBC

Kate is the master of impressions. While the celesbian is best known for her portrayal of Hillary Clinton, her Jeff Sessions impression on SNL this past Saturday generated A LOT of buzz.

In the hilarious clip below, the skit pokes fun of the Attorney General’s SHADY relationship with Russia and his recent perjury scandal. McKinnon jokes about Sessions through the context of Forrest Gump, which is perfect for many reasons.

Watch the bit below:

A standout line:

“I had a bad week. Started out real good. President made a great speech; folks were thrilled on the account that it was real words in a row for a whole hour. We was all as happy as a monkey with a peanut machine. But then I went to bed, I got 800 messages and phone alerts saying I was a sneaky little liar. I didn’t know what to do so my lawyer said ‘Run, Jeffy, run.’ I started running and running.”

P.S. Kate is set to star in the dark comedy Rough Night alongside Scarlett Johansson. Read AE’s announcement of the news HERE and watch the trailer below:

The film will premiere on June 16.

The Story Of 18th Century Lesbian Anne Lister Is Set To Become A Miniseries

annie2

Photo: Joshua Horner

Anne Lister was one hell of a lady.

If you’re a fan of the the 18th century lesbian and her lady lovin’ diaries, I have good news. The historical figure’s life will be retold  in an eight-part miniseries called Shibden Hall. The name references Lister’s family estate and where the bulk of her lesbian trysts took place. I imagine the series will focus on Anne’s pursuit of the wealthy heiress Ann Walker, who she “married” in 1834, and her life as a dynamic trailblazer. I also assume there will be lots and lots of SEX.

The show will be written by Sally Wrainwright (Happy Valley, Last Tango In Halifax) and will co-produced by the BBC and HBO.

Sally gushed over new project, revealing:

“Anne Lister is a gift to a dramatist. She is one of the most exuberant, thrilling and brilliant women in British history, and I can’t wait to celebrate her. Landowner, industrialist, traveler, mountaineer, scholar, would-be brain surgeon and prolific diarist, Anne returns from years of travel to her ancestral home, determined to restore it to its former glory, and determined to marry Ann Walker. It’s a beautifully rich, complicated, surprising love story.”

P.S. AE already covered a 2010 film on Anne’s life — refresh your memory HERE.

Brianna Hildebrand Opens Up About Meeting Her First Girlfriend & Promotes The Premiere Of Tragedy Girls

Photo: Instagram

Photo: Instagram

If you’re not familiar with Brianna, she’s a gay actress who landed the role of Negasonic Teenage Warhead in Deadpool. Following the major break, in May of 2016 the rising star came out and quickly landed herself a girlfriend.

According to Hildebrand, she coincidentally met her GF on the set of First Girl I Loved, a story about two teenage girls who grapple with their sexuality and subsequent feelings for one another.

In a conversation with The Independent thi week, Brianna discussed inadvertently merging her personal life with art, explaining:

“It took me a long time, not necessarily to come out, but to understand how I was feeling. It wasn’t planned for me to come out with First Girl or anything. I just so happened to have met my current girlfriend on the set.”

Fun fact: the star’s lady love worked in the movie’s art department.

The Texan added:

“I am lucky to say now that it is not frightening for me living in LA to be gay. Even when I was in Texas, I wasn’t afraid. I was kind of out in high school. I just could never decide on what label. I am glad that I am public about it and I think I should be.”

In case you’re interested in First Girl I Loved here’s the trailer:

As for Tragedy Girls, the horror movie tells the tale of two teens (played by Brianna and Alexandra Shipp), who want to boost their popularity on social media through MURDERING just about everyone in their sleepy Midwest town. Totally logical, right?

The official synopsis advertises:

“Sadie and McKayla are two social-media obsessed best friends who will stop at nothing to build their online following. The self-titled “Tragedy Girls” kidnap Lowell, an unambitious local serial killer, and force him to mentor them into modern horror legends by committing murders to blow up on the internet. As the bodies fall, the girls become national news and panic in their small town hits a fever pitch — just then, Lowell escapes! Now with the local Sheriff closing in and their relationship on the rocks, the girls must rethink their plan before they find themselves the latest victims of their own killing spree.”

The film premieres at SXSW this weekend and I’ll definitely let you guys know how its received.

Wanda Sykes Celebrates Her Birthday!

Photo: Gifrific

On March 7, Wanda marked her 53rd year on earth. The hilarious lesbian comic thanked her fans for all the the b-day love by tweeting out a bunch of cute heart emojis:

Happy birthday, Ms. Sykes! Thanks for making us laugh and keeping us woke.

That’s a wrap! Kick off the weekend with this GIF of Jane snuggling two doe-eyed pups:

Photo: Tumblr

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