April 30, 2014

Award Nominated Actor Bob Hoskins Dead at 71

Bob Hoskins, 'Who Framed Roger Rabbit' Star, Dead At 71
The Academy Award-nominated actor died Tuesday of pneumonia
British actor Bob Hoskins, best known for his starring role as Eddie Valiant in “Who Framed Roger Rabbit” died Tuesday of pneumonia, TheWrap has confirmed. He was 71.
 The versatile actor was nominated for an Academy Award for his performance in 1986 drama “Mona Lisa.”
Hoskins’ portrayal of an ex-con netted him the BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role and the Golden Globe Award for Best Actor in a Motion Picture Drama.
 His biggest hit came two years later in the blockbuster 1988 comedy “Who Framed Roger Rabbit,” where Hoskins played the hard-nosed private investigator Eddie Valiant.
He continued to make successful star turns in other family comedies including Mr. Smee in “Hook,” and as the eponymous video game character in “Super Mario Brothers.”
Hoskins retired from acting in 2012 after he was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease.
 “We are devastated by the loss of our beloved Bob. Bob died peacefully at hospital last night surrounded by family, following a bout of Pneumonia,” said a statement released by Hoskins’ family. “We ask that you respect our privacy during this time and thank you for your messages of love and support.”
Helen Mirren also released a statement paying her respects to the beloved actor.
“Bob was a great actor and an even greater man,” she wrote. “Funny, loyal, instinctive, hard working, with that inimitable energy that seemed like a spectacular firework rocket just as it takes off. When I worked with him on his iconic film, the ‘Long Good Friday,’ he was supportive and unegotistic. He was never sexist, when many around at that time, were. I had the honor of watching the creation of one of the most memorable characters of British film.”
Tony Maglio contributed to this report

Boy Scout Accidentally Outed at Facebook



Garrett Bryant and Kat Bryant. Garrett will not be able to work at a Boy Scout camp becuase he is gay.


A longtime member of the Boy Scouts who was accidentally outed as gay on Facebook lost out on a coveted summer job with the organization because of the social media mistake.
Garrett Bryant, 19, was looking forward to a leadership position in Arizona when he was told last month that he was being turned down because of his sexuality.

"I did the best I could to follow BSAs 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' policy for gay members," Bryant told the Daily News on Tuesday. "But I couldn't control other people outing me, even if by accident. Following the rules as being an Eagle Scout apparently weren't enough for me to stay on camp staff."
One week before he received the bad news, Bryant had updated his status on Facebook to say he was in a relationship. He received many congratulatory responses, and at least one friend inquired, “what's his name?"

Bryant realized the mistake nine to 12 hours later and removed the comments, but it was too late. He says he believes Boy Scouts officials saw the post or were told of it.
When he called to require about why he was turned down, he was told "homosexuality" was the reason, he said.
Garrett Bryant and Kat Bryant. Garrett will not be able to work at a Boy Scout camp because he is gay.

Garrett Bryant came out to his mother, Kat, last year.

"I felt just extreme sadness," the Northern Arizona University freshman told The News. "I am not one to cry easily. It was pretty intense."
This year the Boy Scouts began allowing openly gay teens into their ranks, but still don't allow gay adults. Bryant is still considered a youth for many programs in the organization, but not for all of them.

"The whole reason we went public with it is to bring it to light that halfway is nowhere near good enough," said mom Kat Bryant, who has known since the fall that her son is gay.
And when Garrett turns 21, he may face more problems from the organization’s antiquated rules — and all because of the social media miscue.

“How will they [BSA] even know these people are gay unless they start digging into people’s Facebook posts?" Scoutcamp.org webmaster Ed Henderson told NBC News, which first reported the story. "It’s going to create a witch hunt."

Fudge, FK is Used Billions of Times, Where does it come from?

Fuckebegger (1286/7) it appears as part of the surname of one of Edward I’s palfreymen. Marc Morris posted this excellent photo on Twitter:
Image



One origin story for fuck is that it comes from when sex was outlawed unless it was permitted explicitly by the king, so people who were legally banging had Fornication Under Consent of the King on their doors, or: F.U.C.K. But obviously that’s wrong. As are all of the other nonsensical acronyms floating about (anything ending in Carnal Knowledge uses words which wouldn’t be used until AFTER the contents of this blog post). So if you do believe any of that, stop it. Stop it right now.

But right now there’s a post going round with a lovely image of a manuscript from Brasenose College, Oxford, proudly declaring it’s the earliest instance of fuck in English (although, it notes, that is apart from that pesky one from Scotland and that one that says fuck but is written in code). But even if we DO agree to discount those two little exceptions, it’s still not the earliest instance. I think the Brasenose fuck was considered the earliest in 1993, and that’s quite out-dated now.

So, for your enjoyment and workplace sniggering, here’s a potted history of fuck.

Instances of fuck before the fifteenth century are rare. Despite it commonly being classed as one of the Anglo-Saxon four-letter words, Jesse Sheidlower (author of an entire book on fuck, and past editor of the OED so he knows what he’s talking about) suspects that it came into English in the fifteenth century from something like Low German, Frisian or Dutch. While ‘fuck’ existed in English before then it was never used to mean rogering, instead it typically meant ‘to strike’ (which was, way-back-when, related to the word that became fuck because it’s a kind of hitting…). Anything that appears earlier is most likely to be the use of fuck to mean ‘to strike’. If you wanted to talk about making whoopee in a dirty way, the Middle English word to use was swive. [ETA: @earlymodernjohn asked if it's related to Modern English 'swivel' as in 'go swivel' and it is! The more you know...]

Another theory for why there’s hardly any written record of fuck before the fifteenth century is because, if it was around before then, it was just too darn rude to write down. The coded example might have been an early way around actually writing it.

Another theory for its late arrival is that it’s a borrowing from Norse (the Vikings) via Scottish because several early instances are found in Scottish writing (such as the fifteenth-century one discounted in that other article). However, this is generally believed to be unlikely, in part because the Scottish weren’t considered influential enough for English to borrow words from them. Perhaps there were more early written examples in Scottish simply because they were less prudish about writing it.

There are lots of instances of the word fuck from before the fifteenth century drifting around, some of the most notable of which are, chronologically:

John Le Fucker (supposedly from 1278) – While excellent, this name is probably apocryphal. Since it was first written about no-one’s been able to find it and it’s generally assumed to be a mis-reading, perhaps of Tucker, or a variant on fulcher, meaning ‘soldier’. Disappointing.

Fuckebegger (1286/7) it appears as part of the surname of one of Edward I’s palfreymen. Marc Morris posted this excellent photo on Twitter:
Image

However, this is generally assumed to mean ‘to strike’ and can be compared with the Anglo-Norman surname Butevilein meaning ‘to strike the churl or wretch’ (‘vilein’ being related to the English villain which originally meant a person of a lower status).

The place-names Ric Wyndfuk and Ric Wyndfuck de Wodehous (which sounds like a brilliant place to live), both of which are found near Sherwood Forest in a document from 1287. These use the bird-name Windfucker (first cited 1599) which may or may not have something to do with making the beast with two backs. The OED veers towards yes, probably, it’s a kestrel which majestically mounts the wind. So the place-names here kind of have fuck in them by a circuitous route and are possibly the earliest instance of fuck in English.

Simon Fukkebotere and Willm’i Smalfuk (Ipswich, c. 1290). Simon’s ‘fuck’ is almost definitely being used to mean ‘to strike’ and describes his trade, which, I know, is hugely disappointing. Who wants ‘hit-butter’ when you could have ‘fuck-butter’?? William’s ‘fuck’ is a new one and it’s probably related to a fukke, a type of sail first cited in 1465. Sorry.

Fockynggroue – Another place-name, from Bristol in 1373. This was shown in 2007 quite persuasively to be the earliest instance of fuck in English used to mean doing the funny downstairs business. It’s a name akin to Lovegrove rather than one which uses the Old English personal name Focca which appears in the place-name Fockbury, or from Old English Folca as in Folkestone. While the instances before this are possibly to do with getting down and nasty, this one’s pretty conclusive, and predates the Fucking Abbot by 155 years.

The coded poem mentioned above from 1475 called Fleas, Flies and Friars in which ‘fucking’ appears as follows:

Non sunt in celi
quia gxddbov xxkxzt pg ifmk
Which, decoded reads: ‘fuccant uuiuys of heli’

‘They [the friars] are not in Heaven because they fuck (the) women of Ely’ (which might be interpreted as a pun on ‘Hell’).

The following are the earliest citations in the OED:

1513 – W. Dunbar Poems, Scottish, ‘Be his feirris he wald haue fukkit’.

The Fucking Abbot (1528) isn’t even the earliest citation that’s widely talked about, predated by ten years by Dunbar, which the link discounts as not being in English, despite appearing in the Oxford English Dictionary.

[THE FUCKING ABBOT COMES HERE IN THE CHRONOLOGY]

1663 – Richard Head, Hic et Ubique: or, The Humors of Dublin. A comedy, ‘I did creep in..and there I did see putting [sic] the great fuck upon my weef.’ I’ve included this even though it’s quite late because I really like saying ‘the great fuck upon my weef’. And because it’s written by a man called Richard Head. RICHARD. HEAD.

And in 1680 by John Wilmot, 2nd Earl of Rochester in a book of what sounds like LOVELY poems: ‘Thus was I Rook’d of Twelve substantial Fucks’.

So, I think we can definitely say there’s at least three, possibly four earlier instances of fuck in English before the Fucking Abbot. Sorry dude.

A Wedding Alliance Might Make Central FL the Gay Wedding Destination in the State


                                                                     
  

The Wedding Alliance — an Orlando organization that raises awareness on marriage equality — is partnering with MBA Orlando to better notify local businesses about the $150 million economic impact waiting to hit Central Florida if same-sex marriage is approved.
The two organizations' efforts could lead to Central Florida becoming the top gay wedding destination, which could mean big business for Central Florida's tourism and hospitality industries.
Mikael Frank Audebert, president of MBA Orlando, said based on a recent survey conducted by MBA Orlando and Converge Orlando Inc. — Central Florida’s LGBT visitors bureau — the region is losing an estimated $150 million over a three-year span (about 6.5 percent of that would be sales tax for our local governments) to other states that offer marriage equality. Statewide, that is $1.1 billion.
As previously reported by the Orlando Business Journal , Orlando is among thetop 10 destinations for the gay travel market and that the LGBT community is responsible for nearly $3 billion impact.
Converge Orlando launched a campaign in December to attract more same-sex married couples to honeymoon in Orlando, but Audebert said that may prove to be a hard task if marriage equality is not welcomed in Central Florida.
“A positive unintended consequence to bringing marriage equality to Florida would mean more LGBT honeymoons as well. Couples married in other states are very sensitive to the laws that affect their rights when traveling to other states,” Audebert said via email. “Right now, Hawaii is a much more desirable honeymoon destination than Florida simply because of [Florida's] anti-gay marriage laws. So marriage equality goes beyond what the wedding industry can benefit from. It is at the core of major economic impact that would positively affect our primary source of revenue in Florida: tourism.”
The partnership between the Wedding Alliance and MBA is looking to prepare businesses now for if and when marriage equality is accepted in Florida.
From the partnership, Audebert will become the alliance’s president, effective April 30, and founders and chairperson of the organization Andrew Springer and Jamie O’Donnell will transition into an advisory board.
Richardson is a general assignment reporter for online and print.

Bisexuals Should Come Out but What Does a Bisexual Make??


Descriptive language used

 

I’ve heard your calls for bisexuals to come out to their friends and family, and I think it’s a great idea. Here’s my conundrum: I’m not sure I technically classify as “bisexual.” I’m a 40-year-old guy who strongly prefers sex with women to men (percentage-wise I’m 70/30). I’ve had sex with dudes in the past (five or six times) and loved it, though I’ve never had the same emotional attachment and attraction that I’ve had with women. Most people seem to think that bisexuals are equally attracted to both genders—sexually and emotionally—like they could decide by flipping a coin. So am I bisexual or just a juicy boner hobbyist? 
A quick word about my calls for bisexuals to come out to their friends and family . . .
Bisexuals complain about anti-bi stereotypes and misconceptions—about biphobia and bi-erasure—and quite rightly. It’s awful, it sucks, it’s gotta stop. But just as coming out has always been the most effective way for gays and lesbians to combat homophobia, coming out is the most effective way for bisexuals to combat biphobia. And while 77 percent of gay men and 71 percent of lesbians are out to “most of the important people in their lives,” according to a 2014 Pew Research survey of LGBT Americans, only 28 percent of bisexuals are.
Some argue that most bisexuals won’t feel safe enough to come out until straight and gay people get over their biphobia. That’s a bullshit argument. Yes, biphobia makes it more difficult for bisexuals to come out—in the same way that homophobia makes it difficult for gays and lesbians to come out. Someone could argue that the culture is less homophobic today, and they would be right. But that wouldn’t be the case if gay people hadn’t risked coming out when “insanely homophobic” was the near-universal default setting for “most of the important people in our lives,” i.e., friends, family, co-workers.
I’ve been accused of “blaming the victim” when I make this point. That’s absurd. I’m not blaming bisexuals for biphobia any more than I’m blaming gay people for homophobia. But biphobia will continue to thrive so long as the majority of bisexuals remain closeted. That’s just a fact. I’ve also been accused of being biphobic for making this point. That’s just nuts. (“That guy hates bisexual people so much, he wants there to be way more of them!”)
Okay, JUICED, on to your question: I get letters like yours every day. Guys tell me that they enjoy fucking men and women but they fall in love only with women. They’re not interested in relationships with men—some aren’t even into kissing men (getting fucked by men, yes; swapping spit with men, no)—but they love them juicy boners. These guys invariably tell me that they’re confused about their sexual orientation. They know they’re not straight (not with all the cock they’ve sucked), and they’re pretty sure they can’t be gay (not with all the pussy they’ve eaten), but they’re convinced they can’t be bisexual—aren’t bisexuals open to sex and relationships with both men and women? Isn’t that what everyone says?
These guys are bisexual, JUICED, and so are you. The reason so many guys like you are confused about their sexual identity—sorry, but “juicy boner hobbyist” is not a sexual identity—is because the popular definition of bisexuality, “someone who is equally attracted to men and women,” excludes guys like you. But there’s an improved definition making the rounds. It was coined by bisexual activist Robyn Ochs: “I call myself bisexual because I acknowledge that I have in myself the potential to be attracted—romantically and/or sexually—to people of more than one sex and/or gender, not necessarily at the same time, not necessarily in the same way, and not necessarily to the same degree.”
You say you’re attracted to men and women, but not in the same way or to the same degree? Congratulations, JUICED, you’re bisexual. But that may not be all you are . . .
“Of all of the bi guys I’ve known over the years,” gay journalist Charles Pulliam-Moore wrote in a post at Thought Catalog, “the majority of them have been what I would describe as bi-sexual but hetero-amorous. That is to say that while they’d certainly get into some sweaty bro-on-bro action, guys simply couldn’t provide the kind of emotional satisfaction necessary for a romantic relationship.”
So if identifying as bisexual feels dishonest—since many folks will assume it means you’re open to a relationship with a man—go ahead and say you’re “bi but hetero-amorous,” and rest assured that you’re not the only bi guy like you out there.
I am a 58-year-old gay man. I have never, ever been attracted to women sexually and never had sex with a woman. However, a few months ago I stumbled across some trans man porn (thank you, Buck Angel!) and was incredibly turned on. I would totally go down on or fuck a hot trans man. Am I still gay? 
“I get this question all the time,” says Buck Angel, a trans male porn star. “You are still gay, my friend. Trans men like myself who present ‘male’ consider ourselves men. So THROWN is still attracted to a man—just one who happens to have a different set of ‘balls.’ It does not make him any less gay. He’s attracted to the masculinity of the trans man. Some people think that genitals are the deciding factor in gender. This is far from the truth! So don’t stress it, THROWN, and go have some fun!”
I’m a 20-year-old guy in a long-distance relationship with my boyfriend of almost two years. Before I met him, I had a history of anonymous sex with men on Craigslist. I’ve recently been having urges to have anonymous sex again and urges that are hard to satisfy in a long-distance relationship. We tried having an open relationship but decided to stop because it left us feeling unhappy. I’m only comfortable with both of us having anonymous hookups, while my boyfriend is only comfortable hooking up with people he knows and is familiar with. 
Unless you guys have a concrete plan that lands you in the same city soon, your best course of action is to officially break up, do whatever/whoever you wanna do, keep in touch while sparing each other the details of your (now-separate and private) sex lives, and then pick up where you left off if and when you’re living in the same city.
If you can’t bear the thought of breaking up and you can’t resist your urges for immediate, real-time, in-person sexual contact, GBP, the second-best course of action is a don’t-ask/don’t-tell arrangement. You do whatever/whoever you wanna do (safely!), he does whatever/whoever he wants to do (safely!), while—again—sparing each other the details.
But the way your boyfriend wants to hook up—with people he knows—discomforts you, most likely because his hookup preferences seem more threatening. A known-and-familiar hookup could easily turn into a relationship, right? True enough, GBP, but the gay world is filled with loving couples in stable, long-term relationships who met during anonymous or nearly anonymous sexual encounters, aka unknown and unfamiliar hookups. So demanding that your boyfriend adopt your preferred model of hooking up is no guarantee that he won’t meet and fall in love with someone else—and it’s no guarantee that you won’t meet and fall in love with someone else either.
By Dan Savage:

Got problems? mail@savagelove.net. Follow @fakedansavage on Twitter.> Email Dan Savage

13 Worse Cities for Gays in their 20’s+

"Best cities lists" for those who identify as LGBT are often pretty predictable: New York, San Francisco, London, Paris, Berlin, Provincetown, you know the drill. Lists that continue to look only to these obvious strongholds miss out on a growing number of other equally exciting and progressive locations around the world that are ideal for young people in the LGBT community.
To cull our own list of slightly more under-the-radar cities for LGBT urban dwellers, we took a number of factors into consideration, namely legal protection, social acceptance, LGBT nightlife and economic opportunities (jobs are key) in order to define the very best cities around the world for young queer people. Pack your bags — it's time to move.

1. São Paulo, Brazil 


The culture of acceptance towards LGBT people in São Paulo has skyrocketed in recent years, a fact highlighted by the participation uptick in the city's annual pride events. The first, held in 1997, had about 2,000 people in attendance. In 2006? São Paulo set the Guinness World Record for the largest gay pride parade in the world: 3 million people (and it's getting bigger every year).
Additionally, the seventh most populated city on Earth, boasts a thriving LGBT nightlife, a nice complement to the fact that gay marriage was legalized in 2013. The city isn't cheap, but it serves as the economic exchange capital of South America. The Atlantic Cities ranked it 26thon the list of global "cities that offer the most opportunity" with respect to economic gain. 

2. Tel Aviv, Israel  



Tel Aviv is a major party city with a booming tech enterprise and it's easily the most LGBT-accepting country in the Middle East. While same-sex marriage isn't legal in Israel, the state does recognize same-sex marriages performed outside national borders and allows the partners of Israeli citizens to gain permits for residency. Also, same-sex couples are afforded the same rights and benefits extended to common-law married couples.
The city has an incredible history, great beaches and a vibrant LGBT nightlife featuring an annual pride parade held in June. In Parade, Yael Karov, the CEO of Ginger Software, claims Israel is "the 'Startup Nation,' … second only to Silicon Valley in terms of startup density." 

3. Stockholm, Sweden


Stockholm isn't a huge city, but it goes above and beyond as a progressive center for LGBT rights. Every July, Stockholm hosts a pride festival and while Sweden's official travel websiteexplains that there is "no center of gay life in Stockholm," that has a lot to do with the fact that the city is spread over 14 different islands and gay/gay-friendly clubs and bars are integrated on all of them.
In 2012 PricewaterhouseCoopers and the Partnership for New York City ranked Stockholmfifth in its overall rankings for cities with the most opportunities. In the same report, Stockholm ranked first in the categories of "intellectual capital and innovation," as well as "health, safety and security." 

4. Amsterdam, The Netherlands


Amsterdam has always led the pack regarding LGBT activism in both government legislation and social policy. In 2001 the Netherlands became the first country to legalize same-sex marriage, so it should come as no surprise that Amsterdam is incredibly accepting of the LGBT community. Since 1996 Amsterdam has hosted an annual pride festival and the city's nightlife is notoriously raucous.
As the city notes on its official travel site, "Amsterdam could be considered the birthplace of LGBT rights. Homosexuality was decriminalized here in 1811, and the first gay bar followed in 1927." It's also a center for innovation and entrepreneurship. The Innovation Cities Program conducted a global study to determine cities that retained a "global innovation economy" in spite of a precarious economic climate and found that Amsterdam ranked third worldwide. 

5. Toronto, Canada


Ignoring for just a moment that Rob Ford is the current mayor of Toronto, it's a truly great city to live in. Canada legalized same-sex marriage in 2005, becoming the fourth country in the world to do so. The nation is at the forefront of progressive change ensuring legal protections against discrimination for LGBT persons, allowing adoption, military service and the right to legally change one's gender. While there are certainly "gayborhoods" in Toronto, the city as a whole is very open-minded and many businesses catering to or owned by LGBT people are integrated throughout the city.
Plus it's a great place to work and find work. On the 2014 Scorecard on Prosperity, Toronto ranked third for "labor attractiveness and economic performance," up from sixth place in 2013. So, Rob Ford… keep it up? 

6. New Orleans, Louisiana


 christiannews.net

One of the best-kept American secrets is that NOLA is super queer. It's filled with young people, it's affordable and there are no open container laws. Autostraddle claims NOLA has "a thriving young queer and trans population, and the African-American LGBT community may be one of the largest in the U.S." While they don't have their own Pride events yet, you canlegally throw a parade with a license at any time, so who's to say Pride isn't every day? Plus there are plenty of gay clubs and bars throughout the city.
Employment wise, NOLA has a pretty long brag sheet, including taking the No. 2 spot onForbes' Best City for a Job list. Same-sex marriage isn't legal, but there are plenty of organizations in Louisiana working to change that, so laissez les bons temps rouler. 

7. Sydney, Australia



While same-sex marriage is still illegal in Australia, it's often considered one of the most gay-friendly places in the world. Sydney is home to a number of gay-friendly beaches and wild nightlife spots catering to the LGBT community. Its world-renowned Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras takes place annually, drawing enormous crowds and big sponsors.
Studies have found that in metropolitan areas, LGBT people are accepted by a wide majority gap, while in many rural areas there's still a ways to go. In the PricewaterhouseCoopers and the Partnership for New York City report on cities that offer the most opportunities, Sydney ranked 11th globally and it's often cited as a great place for entrepreneurs to start a business and young people to kickstart a career.  

8. Seattle, Washington


Seattle is not just Starbucks and rain. It's one of the most progressive cities (in one of the most progressive states) in America and same-sex marriage was legalized in Washington in 2012. During the last weekend of June, Seattle holds its annual Pride Parade, which draws well over 50,000 people.
Much like other major metropolitan areas, Seattle has a strong LGBT nightlife. Looking at jobs, the city is a win as well. Forbes ranked Seattle fifth on their top 10 list in 2013 for "Best Cities for Good Jobs." U.S. News and World Report echoed this, putting Seattle in sixth place for the "Best Cities to Find Jobs." Their football team is also pretty good, according to this year's Super Bowl, if you're into that. 

9. Mexico City, Mexico



Mexico City, a metropolitan capital home to 20 million people, is way queerer than you might think. The city legalized same-sex marriage in 2009, trans* people have the legal right to change their gender on government documents and queer couples can adopt children together. It hosts one of the largest Pride parades in the Americas and the tide of public opinion regarding homosexuality has drastically shifted towards acceptance.
With more than 700 years of culture and history to explore, you'll still need to find time to party it up in LGBT hotspot areas like the Zona Rosa district and the Centro Histórico. In the PricewaterhouseCoopers and the Partnership for New York City report, Mexico City ranked 21st worldwide in global cities with the most opportunities for its inhabitants. 

10. Buenos Aires, Argentina



Many gay and lesbian travel websites compare Buenos Aires to a similarly sized European or North American cities with great LGBT scenes. In 2010 Argentina became the first country in Latin America to legalize same-sex marriage and the second country in the Americas to do so. Senators approved the "Gender Identity Law" unanimously in 2012, which requires that hormone therapy and sex reassignment surgery is free under both public and private health care plans. There are not, however, any laws forbidding discrimination against LGBT people that have passed on the national level.
Looking to career options, Fast Company writes that "Buenos Aires is a culturally vibrant, creative, entrepreneurial city." As for what time to go out? Don't expect things to pick up until midnight at the very least. 

11. Tokyo, Japan



While same-sex marriage may not be legal in Tokyo, that fact does not accurately reflect the climate of the city's LGBT culture. In Japan social norms trump legislation and culturally, homosexuality is neither explicitly forbidden nor encouraged, so the community exists without much hostility. There are, however, some institutional protections in place. Trans* people can legally change their gender after reassignment surgery as of 2008 and many activists in Japan consider it a big step that same-sex Japanese nationals can marry in foreign states.
Tokyo is one of the gay capitals of Asia, with a booming nightlife, an annual Pride festival and the Tokyo Lesbian and Gay Film Festival every June. For job seekers, this is a famously career-focused culture, and the PricewaterhouseCoopers report ranked Tokyo 10th in cities offering the greatest opportunities to those who live and work there. 

12. Barcelona, Spain



Same-sex marriage has been legal in Spain since 2005, anti-discrimination laws are in place to protect LGBT persons in both the workplace and the marketplace and trans* people can legally change their gender. 
There are seemingly hundreds if not thousands of places to go out for LGBT people in the city, including hundreds dedicated to LGBT nightlife alone, including everything from niche gatherings to foam parties. It is one of the crown jewels of LGBT-friendly cities, particularly for 20-somethings seeking a place that's relaxed, hard-working and knows how to have fun, all at the same time. 

13. Austin, Texas


"Keep Austin Weird," is the unofficially official slogan for Austin, Texas. Austin is a strange oasis at the center of a red state, with a young, active and diverse queer community. The city hosts great music festivals (SXSW, ACL) and has top-notch food (Tex-Mex!), along with a far more liberal-leaning population than its metropolitan neighbors. More great news? Austin ranks firstin Forbes for job seekers in 2014. So while same-sex marriage is still not legal in the state, the city is affordable, there's no state income tax and with its booming economy and vibrant queer culture, it's simply impossible not to have Austin on the list. 
Of course, there are always going to be awesome places that don't make the cut on lists like these. In the spirit of widening the cultural discourse around LGBT-friendly places for 20-somethings, make sure to put those cities you believe fit the criteria in the comments below.

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Kathleen French's avatar imageKathleen French

Kathleen French is currently receiving her MFA in fiction from NYU. She graduated with a B.A. in English from Harvard. Follow her on Twitter @frenchamnesty 

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