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AP EXCLUSIVE -- HRC AND OTHER LGBTQ ADVOCATES LAUNCH MAJOR PAID MEDIA CAMPAIGN AGAINST TRUMP-PENCE TRANSGENDER MILITARY BAN: The AP’s Lolita Baldor (@lbaldor) reports this morning that a television ad featuring military, national security, and bipartisan officials voicing opposition to the Trump-Pence discriminatory ban on transgender military service is airing on major networks during morning news programs - “including on the president’s go-to station, Fox News.” The ad says, “An impulsive president tweets that transgender Americans won't be allowed to serve. But decorated military leaders say there's no reason to single out these brave heroes." Sponsored by HRC, Lambda Legal, OutServe-SLDN, American Military Partner Association, and Gender Justice League, it is part of the largest paid media campaign against Donald Trump's ban on transgender troops since he tweeted the policy last July. HRC’s Sarah McBride (@SarahEMcBride) tells Baldor that there’s a "critical window of time" to take the fight directly to the White House. The effort has also included a full-page ad in USA Today. More from HRC and the AP.

HRC JOINS MORE THAN 150 ORGANIZATIONS URGING STATE DEPARTMENT TO RETAIN LANGUAGE ON GLOBAL HUMAN RIGHTS: The letter  to Secretary of State Rex Tillerson comes in response to a department directive to strike from the annual Human Rights Report the full range of abuses and human rights violations experienced most especially by women, girls, LGBTQ people, and other marginalized people around the world. “We call on you to uphold the credibility of this important human rights tool -- that so many of our colleagues around the world use to hold governments to account,” the letter reads. “Your leadership is needed to immediately intervene and reverse course on this decision.” More from Politico.

THROWBACK THURSDAY -- REFLECTING ON THE LEADERSHIP AND POLITICAL POWER OF BLACK WOMEN: As Black History Month draws to a close, and we turn toward Women’s History Month, HRC is highlighting the political and electoral power of Black women. Watch this eloquent reminder from Birmingham city councilor Sheila Tyson (@SheilaTyson4CC) of the power of community to mobilize for change. Watch here.

DESPICABLE -- KANSAS GOP VOTES TO “OPPOSE ALL EFFORTS TO VALIDATE TRANSGENDER IDENTITY”: Laughably, they also claim to recognize “the dignity of those who are gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender.” More from The Wichita Eagle.

HRC MOURNS ZAKARIA FRY, TRANS WOMAN FOUND DEAD IN NEW MEXICO: Fry had been missing since mid-January. Fry’s friends, family and loved ones are sharing their condolences and fond memories of her on her Facebook page. One message, from friend Maddy Wilson, reads: “You were my older sister. You took care of me and loved me like family. I’ll forever love you. I’m sorry.” The Albuquerque Police Department is investigating the case as a homicide. More from HRC.

MORNING MUST LISTEN -- HRC’S SARAH MCBRIDE (@SARAHEMCBRIDE) ON FRESH AIR:

UNIVERSITY OF KANSAS ALUM DONATES $1 MILLION TO SUPPORT LGBTQ STUDENT SCHOLARSHIPS: More from KSNT.

OLYMPIAN GUS KENWORTHY EXPOSES THE SICKENING HOMOPHOBIA DIRECTED AT HIM: Freestyle skier Kenworthy (@guskenworthy), a Olympic silver medalist, called out the slurs, threats and homophobia he has endured. Kenworthy came out as gay in 2015. More from The Advocate.

BEXAR COUNTY, TEXAS, ADDS SEXUAL ORIENTATION, GENDER IDENTITY AND GENDER EXPRESSION TO COUNTY EMPLOYMENT POLICY: More from Out in San Antonio.

COOPERATIVE BAPTIST FELLOWSHIP WILL HIRE LGBTQ PEOPLE -- BUT NOT FOR LEADERSHIP ROLES: The small step forward still fails to fully include LGBTQ faithful in the fellowhsip, which has nearly 1,800 churches. More from World Religion News.

NEW AD FROM MAP SHOWS GRIEVING WIDOW TURNED AWAY FROM FUNERAL HOME AFTER HER WIFE DIES: The ad, from the Movement Advancement Project, shows what could happen if businesses are given a license to discriminate against LGBTQ people. More from Dallas Voice.

MARCH IS BISEXUAL HEALTH MONTH: The Williams Institute found that bisexual people are far less likely than their gay and lesbian counterparts to disclose their sexual orientation to their medical providers, leaving them at risk of failing to have access to a full range of medically-necessary care. More from HRC.

MORNING MUST READ FROM HRC’S CHARLOTTE CLYMER (@CMCLYMER): “How fashion helped me discover my true, imperfect, authentic self as a trans woman,” in NBC.

 GLOBAL EQUALITY NEWS

HRC CALLS ON STATE DEPARTMENT TO CONTINUE WITHHOLDING FUNDING FOR EGYPT OVER ABYSMAL HUMAN RIGHTS RECORD: More from HRC.

LAWSUIT FILED CHALLENGING BERMUDA’S REPEAL OF  MARRIAGE EQUALITY: Last month, Bermuda became the first national territory in the world to repeal marriage equality. More from the Jamaica Observer.

READING RAINBOW - Bookmark now to read on your lunch break!

Bethesda Beat reports that a new Maryland school may be named after Bayard Rustin; KQED interviews Mexican-American filmmaker Leo Herrera about his upcoming film with LGBTQ themes; Pensions & Investments shares a piece from Out Leadership’s Todd Sears on the importance of LGBTQ people in the boardroom; LAD Bible lists five transgender trailblazers you should know about; Washingtonian reviews Kings, a new play with LGBTQ themes


Filed under: A.M. Equality, Community

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