One year later, this is the legacy of Kansas transgender activist Stephanie Mott

This week marked a year since the Kansas transgender activist Stephanie Mott died, suddenly of a heart attack, leaving the state’s LGBTQ community and its many allies stunned and heartbroken.  “She will be missed,” Gov. Laura Kelly said at the time, “but her advocacy to improve Kansas will be remembered.”  “There’s a hole in our… Continue reading One year later, this is the legacy of Kansas transgender activist Stephanie Mott

A year of gratitude from No Place Like Home-land

A year ago today – Kansas Day – my wife and I, along with our dear friend Emily Levine, drove from Kansas City to the Lawrence Public Library for the official release of my book, No Place Like Home. The book is about brave LGBTQ Kansans who spent a decade fighting for equality, so I… Continue reading A year of gratitude from No Place Like Home-land

Here’s more help understanding America (a book review)

One summer in the mid-'90s, the writer Meghan O’Gieblyn was at a Christian rock festival in Peoria where the headliner was DC Talk, a trio formed at Jerry Falwell’s Liberty University. The band was riding a wave of mainstream popularity thanks to the grungy, alt-rock sound of its album Jesus Freak (the record would rise… Continue reading Here’s more help understanding America (a book review)

Meet one of the trans people suing the state of Kansas for their birthright

Luc Malik Bensimón was in the news this month. He’s one of the plaintiffs in Lambda Legal’s lawsuit against the state of Kansas over its refusal to change gender markers on transgender peoples’ birth certificates. “My identity as a man has been put on hold… so, short and sweet, I’m here today because I would like… Continue reading Meet one of the trans people suing the state of Kansas for their birthright

A 74-Year-Old Lesbian Activist To Janelle Monáe: The Kansas Through Line

In my happy daydreams, when Janelle Monáe plays her long-awaited homecoming concert in Kansas City in October, Lea Hopkins is her opening act. Hopkins isn’t an entertainer, but she’s a celebrity in her own right, one every Kansas Citian should know. And the two share a connection. Hopkins, who still reads the daily paper old-school,… Continue reading A 74-Year-Old Lesbian Activist To Janelle Monáe: The Kansas Through Line

Where’s the parade, Kansas City? Lessons from a month of Prides in Kansas

I’m old enough to have seen a lot of Pride celebrations. My first was in San Francisco in 1982. I was 19 years old, freshly transplanted to Berkeley from my home in Nebraska. My mind was blown as soon as I stepped onto an East Bay BART train packed with other high-spirited gay people, all… Continue reading Where’s the parade, Kansas City? Lessons from a month of Prides in Kansas

Here’s how Wyandotte Countians just did something historic for LGBTQ Kansas

An equal-rights victory that has historically involved months of bruising battle in other Kansas towns just happened quietly in the state’s third-largest city. On Thursday, one item among many on the agenda for Wyandotte County commissioners was whether to add sexual orientation and gender identity to the list of groups covered by the county’s non-discrimination… Continue reading Here’s how Wyandotte Countians just did something historic for LGBTQ Kansas