Friday, November 14, 2014

A Day to Remember

The Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDoR), held each year on November 20, was established in 1998 to memorialize transgender and gender non-conforming people who have been killed as a result of hatred, fear, and prejudice. The observance evolved from a web-based project into an international day of action, with observances in over 185 cities throughout more than 20 countries.

TDoR raises awareness of hate crimes against gender non-conforming people, provides an opportunity to publicly mourn and honor the lives of those who might otherwise be forgotten, and provides an opportunity to express love and respect for transgender people in the face of national indifference and hatred. The vigil reminds families, friends, and loved ones that transgender people are their sons, daughters, parents, friends, and lovers and invites their allies to stand in solidarity with the transgender community.

With the GLCCB ( having been under fire for their running of Baltimore Pride, other organizations may be stepping up to help. Hearts & Ears (, a Baltimore-based non-profit for sexual and gender minorities with mental health issues, has scheduled a town hall meeting at their headquarters on November 21 at 6 p.m. as a first step to encourage other organizations to pitch in.

Chase Brexton Health Care, the regional primary care provider, has named Nate Sweeney, a former caregiver and administrator for senior rehab, to serve as executive director for its new LGBT Health Resource Center.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Drag Debuts in Columbia

On November 8, a capacity crowd packed the Second Chance Saloon in the Village of Oakland Mills to see the very first public drag show in Columbia, Maryland. The audience was entertained by (from left-to-right): Onyx D. Pearl, Anastacia Amor, Krystal Nova, Shawnna Alexander, Ashlee Jozet Adams, and Ariyanna Myst perform. Anastacia and Shawnna were the co-hosts. “To every single person who attended and supported us, we thank you soo much for allowing us to be apart of a wonderful night and a wonderful establishment,” wrote Anastacia Amor on Facebook.

Gender Conference East, a gathering aimed at supporting children and youth across the gender spectrum as well as their families and the professionals working with them, will take place November 14 and 15 at the North Baltimore Plaza Hotel (2004 Greenspring Drive, Lutherville-Timonium, Maryland). The conference, co-sponsored by Gender Spectrum, PFLAG-Howard County, and the Ackerman Institute’s Gender and Family Project, will be divided into two segments: a professional day on November 14 and a family day on November 15.

Riding the red wave that splashed across the country and Maryland on November 4, former GOP State Senator Allan Kittleman stunned Democrat councilwoman Courtney Watson and her supporters in the race to succeed term-limited Ken Ulman as Howard County Executive. In doing so, Kittleman became only the second Republican to be elected to that office in the county’s history.

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