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David's Thoughts

by David Placher

Saturday, February 04, 2017

Arizona • Sun, Snow & Fun

Arizona, the home to the Grand Canyon, became a state on February 14th, 1912, and it was the last of the 48 coterminous United States to be admitted to the union. Originally it was part of New Mexico, but the land was ceded to the U.S. in 1848, and became a separate territory in 1863.

Remember the Boston Tea Party? The “Shot Heard ’Round the World”? Or “One if by land, two if by sea”? Many of Massachusetts’s cities and towns played an oversize role in U.S. history, and their dates of founding show they’ve seen a lot: Concord (1635), Hingham (1633), Ipswich (1630), Watertown (1630), Medford (1630), Boston (1630), Lynn (1629), Salem (1626), Gloucester (1623), and Plymouth (1620).

The same can be said for Massachusetts’s ole LGBT rights. The Commonwealth’s (that’s how it deems itself) polices and laws also play an important role in the development of the LGBT rights in the U.S.

All reasons to consider a visit to this forward-thinking, LGBT-friendly state. Traveling to Boston from Baltimore is cheap. Southwest, JetBlue, and Spirit airlines offer roundtrip airfares for as little as $80. From there, traveling to any of Massachusetts other historic cities is just a short drive.

Friday, December 23, 2016

Brownsville, Texas • Borderline

Brownsville is located at the southern tip of Texas and it borders Matamoros, Mexico. It’s also close to South Padre Island, a major spring break destination in Texas. Traveling to Brownsville from Baltimore can be expensive and complicated because few airlines fly there and there’s inevitably a layover – no direct flights. Brownsville is a conservative city with a lot of potential. Although its downtown is filled with payday lenders and cheap knick-knack shops, its historical architecture is evidence of a once thriving area. There is potential for revitalization, if the right person with vision arrived.

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Rainbow Flag in Dire Distress

The American flag is displayed with the union down as a signal of dire distress in the instances of extreme danger to life or property.  The Rainbow flag, commonly referred to as the gay pride flag, is a symbol of gay pride and rights.  As of November 8, 2016, it should be displayed with the top red stripe pointing down as a symbol of LGBT distress because President-elect Trump, Vice President-elect Pence and their team have positions on issues that are unfavorable to the LGBT community.  Although Trump has delivered mixed statements--some favorable, some not--about the LGBT community over the years, his entourage of surrogates are hostile to the LGBT community and all will be in positions to influence public policy.

Friday, November 11, 2016

Portland, Maine

Cool, Coastal, Close

Portland, Maine, is a wonderful city to visit for a weekend trip from Baltimore. Located on the Casco Bay, offshore Portland is replete with awesome islands. On land’s edge, the city’s waterfront features restaurants, shops, and working finishing wharves. Portland also has an inclusive feel, with several LGBT venues, including Blackstones, Portland’s oldest gay bar, and Styxx, a popular gay club. The state, however, has a very complex LGBT history, filled with setbacks and successes. Maine recognizes this roller coaster and supports efforts to preserve its LGBT history. The LGBT community in Maine continues to grow. Recently, Bustle news, a media outlet that focuses on women’s issues, rated Maine as one of the best places to live for LGBTers.

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