THE family of a lesbian woman who was shot and killed believe her death was mostly influenced by her sexuality. Limakatso Puling, 29, was shot and killed in Avoca Hills on Tuesday night.
It is alleged Puling and a friend were walking home when they were approached by armed men who demanded their cellphones. It is believed that Puling refused to hand over her cellphone leading to one of the men shooting her in the head.
Thembeka Ngcengula, Puling’s girlfriend, said it would take her a very long time to come to terms with her loss. Not only had she lost a partner but a parent to her disabled daughter, Olwethu, she said.
Lineo Puling, Limakatso’s aunt, said the family were heartbroken. They were expecting to see her in the December holidays. She said Puling had called home a weekend before her death and told them to make arrangements for a family get-together.
“I don’t even know where to begin explaining the hurt our family, especially her grandmother, is going through. We haven’t seen her since 2018. Receiving her phone calls telling us she was coming home brought so much joy. Unfortunately, it was short-lived.”
Lineo said they were saddened that their daughter was robbed of her chance at life because of her sexuality.
“We contacted her friend who she was with when they were attacked. She told us that when Limakatso refused (to give) her phone, those men kept calling her names regarding her sexuality. The killers must be gloating that they killed a lesbian. Was she not a human being? She was a lesbian woman and didn’t deserve to be killed. I hope justice will be served one day.”
Hong Kong man accused of concealing his sex to rape woman cleared of all charges
An unemployed Hong Kong man accused of concealing his sex in order to rape a woman he met on a lesbian forum has been cleared of all charges.
A High Court jury on Friday acquitted Tsang Tsz-ho, 30, after four hours of closed-door deliberations in the midst of a typhoon, which ultimately led to the postponement of all other hearings.
Tsang was found not guilty of rape by a vote of five to two, and cleared of indecent assault by a unanimous vote from the jury of six men and one woman, concluding a 10-day trial before Mr Justice Joseph Yau Chi-lap.
The NYPD is asking for help in its search for the man who attacked a young woman in the East Village because she was holding hands with her girlfriend.
On September 15, the 21-year-old woman was walking with her girlfriend near the corner of East 14th St. and 3rd avenue when the suspect began yelling anti-gay slurs at them, amNY reported.
The couple continued walking, but the suspect did not relent. Continuing to spout slurs, he approached the victim and punched her in the face before fleeing the scene. The victim was not seriously injured.
Nearly a month later, the attacker has still not been found. The NYPD Hate Crime Task Force continues to investigate the incident and on Sunday, released camera footage of the suspect walking down the street.
Back in May, when the streaming platform Twitch announced the release of more than 350 new “identity tags” that could be used to sort streams into distinctive categories, Jess Bolden was excited.
The 25-year-old FACEIT Games Esports analyst, who lives between France and Italy with her female partner, streams the game Rainbow Six Siege, a largely male-dominated pursuit. Bolden was once Samsung team head coach for the game, which she streams under the name JessGOAT.
She figured she could use the new “lesbian” tag to show other lesbian gamers that her stream was a safe space for them. But, Bolden says, she felt conflicted. “I would look at the tag for that extra second, to question myself, and I’m usually confident in everything that I do,” Bolden says. “So there’s obviously a problem.”
Bolden’s hesitancy was justifiable. Twitch has been widely criticized for an ongoing scandal involving “hate raids” aimed mostly at its BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ users. These attacks are carried out by bots programmed to spam streamers’ chats with offensive messages. The conditions became so bad that Twitch users started a campaign — #TwitchDoBetter — to push for change, and at one point arranged a digital “protest” where streamers boycotted the platform in solidarity with hate raid victims.
In response, Twitch last month filed a lawsuit against two users allegedly behind many hate raids and, more recently, introduced chat verification.
While hate against streamers is common, lesbians feel they are the subject of both sexism and a specific kind of sexualization. “We get multiple DMs, like ‘I could turn you straight’ or ‘You haven’t found the right guy,’” says Baeu, an 18-year-old lesbian streamer from Florida who broadcasts to followers under the name Spoink. Baeu is a member of Lilac Lesbians, a Minecraft Championship team hoping to increase lesbian representation in gaming. (Input is withholding the last names of most of the streamers in this piece out of concern for their safety.)
“Even when I was underage, they’d still message me inappropriate stuff,” Baeu adds. “Twitch’s solution was pretty much: ‘Oh, well you have your messages open.’” She adds that multiple reports she’s submitted to the company about harassment have not resulted in any action against offending users.
The “lesbian” tag has only increased harassment, according to Bolden. “‘I hate gays’ is probably the most common [comment],” she says. “Or people complaining that I’m a lesbian.” All of the streamers interviewed agreed that they had seen abuse aimed specifically at lesbians, ranging from statements like “of course you’re a lesbian — you’re fat” to assertions that the lesbian streamers were “going to hell” because of their sexuality.
A same-sex couple who were denied rental housing in Evansville because of their sexual orientation won their complaint this week against a company that says God, not government, is the final authority.
The Evansville-Vanderburgh County Human Relations Commission ruled in favor of Kimberly and Chasity Scott in their 2020 filing, while Myers Family Rentals, the subject of the Scotts’ complaint, was hit with $41,000 in civil penalties and damages.
While being shown the home in May 2020, the Scotts said they were asked by a Myers family member if they were “together, together” or “lesbian.”
“Yes, ma’am, we are. She (Chasity) is my wife,” Kimberly Scott responded.
After hearing this, Myers Family Rentals refused to make the home available to the Scotts, according to the couple’s complaint. It was filed a few days after the Scotts toured the home.
The Scotts said they moved to Henderson after being denied the rental property in Vanderburgh County.
According to the Human Relations Commission’s findings, Myers Family Rentals admitted that they “do not rent to people who choose to live as boyfriend and girlfriend, fiancés, male or female homosexuals, polygamous, polyamorous, or any other relationship that denies God’s requirement … that marriage be between one man and one woman.”
The Scotts said they were discriminated against based on Vanderburgh County’s Fair Housing Ordinance, which is a companion to federal and Indiana fair housing laws.
In 2008, after 55 years together, Del Martin, age 87, and Phyllis Lyon, age 84, were finally wed in San Francisco, but it was for the second time. Four years earlier, before same-sex marriage was legalized in the state of California, during a large ceremony honoring their long-standing contributions to LGBTQ activism, they were the first of 90 gay couples to be married illegally by the city’s then-mayor Gavin Newsom.
When Martin and Phyllis made their initial vows as San Francisco’s first same-sex couple, the ceremony was conducted so that their union could potentially be included in a lawsuit to champion marriage equality in the United States. The director of the National Center for Lesbian Rights, Kate Kendell, invited them with this promise: “This will hopefully be the last thing the movement will ever ask you to do, but do you wanna get married?”
As lesbian history was unfolding in the 1950s, it was Del and Phyllis who gathered in the home of their friend Rose Bamberger and her partner Rosemary Sliepen and founded the Daughters of Bilitis (DOB), the first lesbian organization in the country. Martin and Lyon would soon become co-editors of the Ladder, DOB’s publication, and grow the readership even amid an era of pervasive homophobia. The pair was also the first lesbian couple to join the National Organization for Women, as feminist causes also spurred their organizing work.
Over the next five decades, Martin and Lyon never stopped organizing, and gradually, thanks in no small part to their efforts, LGBTQ visibility shifted from secrecy to “out and proud” activism.
I will never forget watching Martina Navratilova play at Wimbledon the year after she came out as a lesbian. It was the 1982 tournament and the backlash against her had been brutal.
Very deeply courageous and principled, Martina once estimated that she lost around US$10 million in endorsement deals as corporate executives rushed to distance themselves from her at a time when anti-gay bigotry was sky high within the context of the AIDS crisis.
Martina was the very first lesbian role model of my generation. I was 20 years old during that tournament, and I heard from lesbians of all ages about the pride they felt at being able to tell those friends and family members that were not comfortable about lesbianism that Martina was one of them. The only other lesbians I had seen on TV were the characters in The Killing of Sister George, portrayed as twisted and damaged individuals, so having a sports superstar on our team was amazing.
Clearly not everyone felt the same. The Australian retired tennis player Margaret Court, who had won at Wimbledon three times, said in 1990 that although Navratilova is a “great player” she would like to see somebody win, “to whom the younger players can look up to”. Court, a born again Christian, said that as far as she was concerned, “it is very sad for children to be exposed to homosexuality.”
The name of Javiera Mena is a beacon for the Latin American LGBTQ community, even more so among in the musical community.
Since the beginning, Mena has sung about lesbian love, while fighting to defeat the stigma around that. Her battle for the visibility of the LGBTQ community, of which she is a part, has led her to be considered an icon.
The Chilean singer-songwriter presented her Extended Play “Entusiasmo” a month ago, hinting at the album she plans to release in 2022.
The production includes the singles “Diva” with Chico Blanco, a song to pay tribute to the LGBTQ community, and “Dos”, a ballad that tells the story of a woman in love with two other women.
Towards the normalization of lesbian love in music
But is it easy to write and sing love songs between women?
“There are few songs which are a lesbian woman singing to another woman. There are very few of these in the mainstream although there must be more now. I’m sure I am missing some and that there will be more and more.” Mena told Zona Pop CNN.
“In pop music we always have had gay men. We have great gay performers – Freddie Mercury, George Michael, Elton John. Even in Latin America, we had Juan Gabriel – although what was obvious didn’t need to be asked about [his iconic response to being asked if he was gay]. But we don’t have many references for lesbian women in Latin America, or in the rest of the world,” adds the singer-songwriter. (Translated)
El nombre de Javiera Mena es un referente para la comunidad LGBTQ en Latinoamérica. Más aún la musical.
Desde sus inicios, Mena le ha cantado al amor lésbico, al mismo tiempo que ha luchado para derrotar el estigma alrededor de esa palabra. Su batalla por la visibilización de la comunidad LGBTQ, de la cual es parte, la ha llevado a ser considerada un ícono.
La cantautora chilena presentó hace un mes su Extended Play “Entusiasmo”, un abrebocas del que será el disco que prevé lanzar en 2022.
De la producción se desprenden los sencillos “Diva” junto a Chico Blanco, un tema para rendirle tributo a la comunidad LGBTQ, y “Dos”, una balada que cuenta la historia de una mujer enamorada de otras dos mujeres.
Hacia la normalización del amor lésbico en la música
Pero, ¿es fácil escribir y cantar canciones al amor entre mujeres?
“Hay pocas canciones de una mujer lesbiana hablándole a otra mujer. Hay muy pocas igual en el mainstream, o ahora deben haber más, seguramente yo no me estoy enterando y cada vez habrá más”, dijo Mena a Zona Pop CNN.
“En la música pop siempre existió el hombre gay. Tenemos grandes referentes, Freddie Mercury, George Michael, Elton John, incluso en Latinoamérica, Juan Gabriel, que aunque lo que se ve no se pregunta, ¡lo que se ve no se pregunta! Pero de mujeres lesbianas no tenemos muchos referentes en Latinoamérica y en el mundo tampoco”, agrega la cantautora.
July 16 2021: TUCSON, Az. – The global audience of the It Gets Better Project received a glimpse into the lives of LGBTQ+ athletes who won’t let setbacks keep them from achieving their dreams in its new series “Passion. Power. Performance,” which streamed last month.
The docu-series shares inspirational stories behind proud LGBTQ+ athletes who are out and training for the 2021 Tokyo Olympics, which episode one featured Arizona-based paralympic basketball player for Team USA, Courtney Ryan.
“I want to be an inspiration because you see me on the court doing some crazy tricks, tilting in a chair, doing all of this stuff that you wouldn’t expect,” Ryan said. “That’s what I love about wheelchair basketball — we get the opportunity to change perceptions and change ideas of what disability should look like. We aren’t fragile. We are competitors, and we’re ready to prove that,” she added.
Out and Training for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020: Sports have always been part of Ryan’s life – and that didn’t change after she became paraplegic. Watch how with the support of her sister, she came out, and is changing perceptions of disability.
After a Russian grocery chain apologized for featuring gay parents in an ad, two lesbian parents told Meduza what it’s like to live in a country where their very portrayal qualifies as offensive.
In late June, the Russian grocery store chain VkusVill put out an advertisement featuring a lesbian couple as part of its “Recipes for Family Happiness” campaign. The ad set off an avalanche of homophobic comments and threats against the company, and VkusVill soon announced it would delete the ad, calling it “a mistake that occurred as a result of some individual employees’ unprofessionalism.” This sparked another wave of criticism on social media, as people accused the chain of cowardice and hypocrisy. Throughout the debate, however, there’s been almost no mention of the difficulties same-sex couples in Russia actually face. To learn more about what life is like for same-sex parented families in Russia, Meduza spoke to Yana and Yaroslava, two women in a loving relationship who are now raising a child together.
July 16, 2021: Lillian Faderman is a mother and grandmother, but these aren’t the only titles that make her proud: The La Jolla resident is known, depending on who you talk to, as the “mother of lesbian history” or the “foremother of gay and lesbian studies.”
Over the past four decades, Faderman’s books have revealed the hidden history of female same-sex romance and uncovered how American lesbians pioneered social movements that transformed our society. She’s also written landmark books about gay rights, pioneering politician Harvey Milk and more. Three of her works have been named Notable Books by The New York Times, a remarkable accomplishment for any author.
Faderman, who turns 81 on Saturday at the tail end of San Diego’s Pride Week, isn’t done. She recently curated an exhibit about local LGBTQ+ history at the San Diego History Center, and she’s now finishing her work on an upcoming book. In an interview, she talked about her awakening as a Southern California teenager, the influential roles of lesbians in America’s past and San Diego’s surprising history as a vanguard of LGBT activism.
Former South Africa striker Portia Modise doesn’t care if the football community loves her. She doesn’t care if you like her outspoken manner, or the way she dresses, or that she loves women.
She’s the only African footballer to score 100 international goals, and represented her country for 15 years from the age of 16. But if you don’t want to give her respect for that, or her countless achievements on the field, she’s not too fussed about that either.
One of the first openly gay [sic] players in the global game, Modise says she only cares about furthering women’s football in South Africa, protecting female players from harassment, and being a voice for the LGBTQ+ community in her country.
Today, 21 years after her debut in 2000, the out footballers in Africa can be counted on one hand, but interestingly include her captaincy successor for Banyana Banyana, Janine van Wyk.
Despite hard-earned legal freedoms and constitutional rights won since apartheid [same-sex marriage has been legal in South Africa since 2006], much of the LGBTQ+ community in South Africa lives in perpetual fear of violence.
Murder and ‘corrective rape’, during which women are violated to ‘fix’ their queerness [sic], are still an epidemic for Black women in particular. There have been over 20 recorded LGBTQ+ hate crime murders locally since February 2021.
For Modise, the especially brutal rape and murder of national teammate and fellow activist Eudy Simelane in 2008, who was stabbed 25 times, further spurred her on in her fight for fair treatment, and was a factor in her exit from the team for four years.
In 1925, Eve Adams, a Polish-Jewish émigré who had spent the past four years travelling across the United States selling leftist radical literature, opened a tearoom in Greenwich Village. Eve’s Hangout, as it was sometimes known, was situated in the basement of 129 MacDougal Street. The small, sparingly lit cellar quickly became a destination among the city’s bohemian contingents—artists, poets, activists, gay men, and lesbians. According to the Daily News, it was rumored that “men kept to one room, the women in another.” The Quill, a downtown periodical, summed it up, mockingly, as a place “where ladies prefer each other.”
One evening in June, 1926, a woman named Margaret Leonard walked into Eve’s Hangout wearing a tweed suit and carrying a briefcase. Adams took to Leonard, and, the next day, they met at Adams’s apartment and rode a taxi to Times Square to see a play. Later, Leonard would report that, in the car, Adams kissed her “profusely,” slid her hand under Leonard’s coat, and touched Leonard’s breasts. At dinner, they waltzed. That night, Adams told Leonard that she wanted to give her a copy of the book she had published the previous year, called “Lesbian Love,” a collection of biographical snapshots of lesbians Adams had known. They returned to her apartment, where Adams gave Leonard a copy and autographed it.
A few days after their outing, Leonard returned to Eve’s Hangout and revealed herself to be an undercover policewoman. Together with four other officers, she arrested Adams for “disorderly conduct”—a broad charge that referred, in this case, to Adams’s alleged sexual advances—and for having written an “obscene” book. After trials for each charge, Adams was sentenced to a year and a half in jail. When she completed her sentence, immigration authorities began deportation proceedings against her. (Although she had begun applying for naturalization in 1923, Adams was not yet an American citizen.) During the hearings, she pleaded to be allowed to stay, but, in 1927, she was sent back to Poland. Her days there were hard. In a letter to a friend, she described her “everyday worry” being “for a piece of bread.” “I cannot steal and I am a stranger-Jew here,” she wrote. She sustained herself on a Ten Cent Classics edition of Tennyson’s poetry, and she eventually managed to move to Paris. Adams’s passport listed her profession as “writer—woman of letters,” but, to support herself, she sold novels to American tourists on the street. After the Nazis occupied France, she tirelessly worked to find a way out of the country, but in late 1943 she was captured and sent to Auschwitz, where she was murdered.
“Lesbian Love,” though long since largely forgotten, might be the first ethnography of lesbians in America. Structured as a series of vignettes, the book—which Adams described as a “scientific literary contribution”—captures scores of women who flirted, courted, or were in love with one another, and some who played with the presentations of their gender. In the opening chapter, “Glimpses,” Adams writes of “a little rendezvous tearoom, late after dinner hour, where six or seven girls had gathered. One lone man sat silent in a corner. Whispers and love sonatas could be heard among the group of girls—occasionally laughter.” The group included women called Ann, Sara (who seemed to be Ann’s lover), and “May, the proprietress, known as Jim.”
For a long time Hana Klein thought she was the only lesbian in Israel, and maybe in the whole world. She was born in 1951, grew up in Tel Aviv and at 11 realized that her feelings were a bit different from those of her girlfriends. But she didn’t know why. Klein says that in the Israel of the 1950s and ‘60s, “there were no words for it.”
The first hint that she wasn’t alone was at a kiosk selling porn magazines and newspapers; one journal caught her eye. “The cover photo was of two bare-breasted women touching each other, with the caption “Contemporary lesbians.” For the first time she realized that there was a word for what she was.
“People can’t imagine the feeling of something missing in conservative Israel at the time. The atmosphere was that there was nothing. For years I walked around in a desert …. Even when I learned what it was called, there was a feeling that nobody else was like me,” Klein says.
“Those were times without a computer, so you couldn’t Google things, there were no community organizations, there was no place to meet. I tried to bring up the subject with friends and see their reactions, and from them I realized that it wasn’t acceptable.”
Klein was one of the first activists in LGBTQ and feminist organizations in Israel. She started the country’s first organization for lesbians, Alef – an acronym for lesbian-feminist organization. She has often been called “Tel Aviv’s first lesbian.”
There’s a limit to what any one person can accomplish in her time on earth. Marcia Freedman managed to blow right past the limit and just kept going.
Pioneering feminist, LGBTQ activist, Knesset member, author and co-founder of an esteemed Middle East peace organization, Marcia Freedman died Sept. 21 in Berkeley. She was 83.
“She was quiet and wise,” said Janis Plotkin, who decades ago recruited Freedman to serve on the board of the S.F. Jewish Film Festival. “She was a little woman but a giant in terms of intellect, kindness, thoughtfulness and her strategic approach to problem-solving.”
Freedman’s social and political activism took many forms. Much of her work centered on Israeli politics and seeking to resolve the conflict with the Palestinians. She argued for a two-state solution long before it became a stated policy objective. As a young olah (immigrant) and member of Knesset, the state of Israel’s legislature, she also fostered groundbreaking women’s rights legislation, going toe to toe with her misogynist male colleagues.
A man in France is on trial for allegedly raping and torturing his lesbian sister and her girlfriends. Samy M reportedly lured his sister and her friends to the river Drôme, where he sexually abused and tortured the women. He is said to have used a razor to cut a ‘permanent smile’ on his sister’s girlfriend’s face. Her scars are still evident and will likely disfigure the victim for life.
Samy M has been on trial since Monday, September 27, at the Drôme Regional Court in Valence for the December 2018 crimes. As mentioned, he abducted and raped his then 24-year-old sister, who had left the family home in Bourg-de-Péage a month earlier, Les Observateurs reported. The man attacked his sibling after finding out she was having an intimate relationship with a woman, thereby going against the doctrine of Islam. Samy M was armed and hooded when he forced the victims to a deserted place, beat them, forced them to kneel down, and subsequently carved deep cuts on both cheeks of his sister’s girlfriend with a razor. “I will make you smile forever,” he allegedly told them, per the victims’ testimony in court.
Lesbian activist, Sisanda Gumede, 28 was the latest victim of homophobic murder in South Africa when she was stabbed at the weekend.
It is alleged that a 28-year-old lesbian activist, Sisanda Gumede, was stabbed on Sunday afternoon and was rushed to hospital bleeding profusely. She died en route to hospital.
“Although the information regarding the incident violently [sic] is still sketchy, it appears that the deceased and (the suspect) had an altercation while at home. Gumede’s murder is understood to be motivated by homophobia, as (the suspect) allegedly gloated after the incident that he had removed the curse from the family,” the Department of Social Development said in a statement released on Tuesday.
Two men have been arrested and charged in connection to the killing of out lesbian journalist Lyra McKee, who was shot to death while covering a riot in Northern Ireland two years ago.
“These arrests are the culmination of a detailed two-year investigation into Lyra’s murder and the events which preceded it,” Police Service of Northern Ireland Detective Superintendant Jason Murphy said in a written statement. “The local community have supported the Police Service of Northern Ireland throughout the course of this protracted investigation, and I wish to thank them for their continued support.”
Editor’s note: While the students at the centre of this story aren’t lesbians, accusing the students of being lesbian in this context demonstrates the social position of lesbians, with both the teacher and the students understanding the word alone to be derogatory. The media article did not challenge this framing.
Meerut: A teacher allegedly called two students lesbians as an insult, dragged them out by thweir hair and paraded them around the school after she spotted them having lunch together. She was “enraged” ar the violation of COVID protocol. Police have recorded the students statements and the school will initiate an inquiry.
The two Class X students were from different sections. One had come into the other’s classroom during lunch break. The teacher in charge, Amita Rastogi, lost her cool. “She used derogatory terms, said we were in a relationship and that we must be seeing each other outside school,” one of the girls said.