#LGBTQ

Triathlon Union Reverses Course On Rainbow Flag Ban After Uproar

Last week, Outsports reported the International Triathlon Union, the governing body for triathlon events around the world, had effectively banned rainbow flags from being flown at ITU events.

The LGBT sporting site noted that the phrase “sexual orientation” had been quietly added to a rule about displaying ‘propaganda’ two months ago.

Part X regarding the general conduct of athletes read, “Athletes will avoid displaying any kind of demonstration of political, religious, sexual orientation or racial propaganda.”

The penalty for flying or displaying a rainbow pride flag could be disqualification and removal from competition.

At the time, a spokesperson for ITU told Outsports the language was “similar wording that is included in many other sporting organizations.”

The ITU has now reversed course and rescinded the ban on rainbow flags or symbols.

“The ITU has always stood for equality, inclusion and respect, and would never knowingly take such a decision that would infringe on the rights and freedoms of people to express themselves and banning the display of rainbow flags,” writes the ITU in a new statement.

The organization goes on to say they will “revisit the rule” to make sure the right of self-expression is continued and embraced.

The statement closes with this:

ITU regrets that this interpretation of the updated rules could have affected any person. It was never ITU’s intention that anyone could be hurt by this decision, one that was never intended to be taken against any group of individuals, no matter their race, religion or sexual orientation.

ITU is proud to be an organisation that is absolutely inclusive from its inception, and will continue to be so in the future.

It’s somewhat disingenuous to say there was a ‘misunderstanding’ when the ITU spokesperson clearly articulated the new rule to Outsports just last week.

Great Britain's Jack Bristow told BBC Sport, "Banning the flag 'for our own good' is not a good look."

"It wasn't really an issue beforehand, so I don't know why they introduced this rule and it seems to have backfired on them," he added. "But it's great they have responded so quickly and been prepared to listen to feedback."

(h/t Outsports, BBC Sport)

Leader In 'Ex-Gay' Movement Now Seeking To Date Men

My grandmother used to say all the time, "Ye who protesteth the loudest, do it the mostesth!"

That echoes in my mind as I report that a prominent therapist in the so-called conversion therapy industry has announced he has left the ‘ex-gay’ movement and is actively looking to date men.

Truth Wins Out, a nonprofit think tank and advocacy group that fights against anti-LGBT prejudice and discrimination, obtained screen captures of a private Facebook group that shared the news David Matheson, who penned the controversial ‘ex-gay’ book, Becoming a Whole Man, is now living his life as an openly gay man.

During his career as a therapist, Matheson has authored several ‘ex-gay therapy’ programs including the notorious Journey Into Manhood program.

Rich Wyler, Journey Into Manhood’s director, broke the news in the Facebook group writing, “David…says that living a single, celibate life ‘just isn’t feasible' for him, so he’s seeking a male partner.”

Wyler added, “He has gone from bisexuality to exclusively gay.”

TWO reached out to Matheson and received a statement which was appallingly absent any regret for his actions in the past. He also shares he plans to remain in the Mormon Church.

“My time in a straight marriage and in the ‘ex-gay’ world was genuine and sincere and a rich blessing to me,” Matheson said in text messages to TWO. “I remember most of it with fondness and gratitude for the joy and growth it caused in me and many others. But I had stopped growing and was starting to die. So I’ve embarked on a new life-giving path that has already started a whole new growth process.

“I wasn’t faking it all those years,” he added. “I’m not renouncing my past work or my LDS faith. And I’m not condemning mixed-orientation marriages.” 

“I continue to support the rights of individuals to choose how they will respond to their sexual attractions and identity,” he wrote in closing. “With that freedom, I am now choosing to pursue life as a gay man.”

At least one former client of Journey Into Manhood rejected the announcement.

“While I am pleased for Mr. Matheson that he has found a path forward for his life, I can’t help but think of the hundreds if not thousands of people who are still stuck in the closet, a closet that was created in part by Mr Matheson himself,” said Chaim Levin, who claims he was psychologically harmed by the program Matheson helped design for Journey Into Manhood. “I hope that Mr. Matheson will do whatever he can to rectify the harm that he’s inflicted on many people in the LGBTQ community, myself included.”

A 2007 New York Times article revealed Matheson had earned a master’s in counseling and guidance from Brigham Young University. He began full-time practice in New Jersey in 2004, where he charged clients $240 per 90-minute session.

Matheson helped develop the ‘program’ for Journey into Manhood, which took gay men go into the forest where they were encouraged to engage in “manly” activities in an effort to change their sexual orientation. 

“For some people ‘gay’ is never going to work,” he told ABC’s Nightline in 2010 while discussing Journey Into Manhood. “That kind of life, and that kind of living, is never going to gel — ever — with their value system.”

“For those men, that’s why we exist, so that they can have another way, another approach of dealing with their sexual feelings,” Matheson added.

Since the publication of TWO's report, Matheson has posted a lengthy coming-out essay on his Facebook page, which reads in part:

 

Not that I would excuse myself, but any shortcomings I had as a therapist came from too narrow a view of what “emotionally healthy” can look like. They came from my own homophobia and narrow mindedness. I am truly sorry for those flaws and the harm they have surely caused some people. And I’m sorry for the confusion and pain my choice may be causing others.

Even today, as a newly-out gay man, I still find too much homophobia in myself.

 

(h/t Truth Wins Out - image via HUME Clinic)

Unfaithfully Yours Honors Tammy Faye Bakker's Life!

Unfaithfully Yours Honors Tammy Faye Bakker's Life!


Did You Know Jim Bakker Was Accused Of Homosexuality?

I first came across the late, noted television personality, Tammy Faye Bakker (or Tammy Faye Messner) when I was still in grade school as she appeared as a cast member on the sometimes forgotten reality show, The Surreal Life. At that stage in my life, it was still a bit rare to see the LGBTQ community painted in such a positive light in media. My escape during my youth, of course, was television and pop culture. I witnessed Tammy Faye praising the gay community and playing a mother to the other cast members, including porn star, Ron Jeremy, reality television vixen, Trishelle Canatella, and Rapper, Vanilla Ice. It is so easy to fall in love with Tammy Faye. Her charming, warm personality oozed with spark. As you likely know, Tammy Faye passed into paradise in 2007 after complications with colon cancer spread to her lungs. Strangely, I hadn't researched much into Tammy Faye or her former husband, Jim Bakker, and was glued to my television in a recent ABC 20/20 documentary highlighting the couple's life, fraud scandals, and sexual allegations.


During the documentary, Unfaithfully Yours, we were schooled on Jim and Tammy's televangelist Christian news program, Praise The Lord (PTL). Long story short, Jim and Tammy would basically ask for dollar after dollar and religious zealots would donate and donate. The Bakker's lived lavishly until sexual allegations came against Jim and his colleague, Jim Fletcher, along with allegations of fraud. In the documentary, it is briefly glossed over that Jim had numerous allegations of engaging in homosexuality. Shocker, right? Through that, Jim was also accused by his secretary, Jessica Hahn, of sexual assault and was eventually jailed for fraud. This would lead to Tammy Faye's life in shambles, leaving only a thousand dollars to her name. It was at her rock bottom Tammy Faye began connecting with the LGBTQ community.


World of Wonder producers, Randy Barbato and Fenton Bailey, are interviewed during the documentary as they discuss their own film, The Eyes of Tammy Faye, and her love of the gay community, including her acceptance of people living with HIV at the height of the AIDS epidemic. Tammy Faye never backed down on her love of our community and called Christians "sad" for being afraid of those suffering from AIDS and not being able to care about them. She was truly ahead of her time and is now considered a gay icon for her role in gay events, including pride parades. She is quoted saying on Larry King:

"When we lost everything, it was the gay people that came to my rescue, and I will always love them for that."


I highly recommend you checking out Tammy Faye's latest documentary! I watched it on Hulu, but I'm sure you're crafty enough to figure out elsewhere to view it. In the meantime, check out the teaser trailer for the documentary below.

 

 

 

Horror Film, Daddy’s Girl, Includes Kinky, Gay Character!

Horror Film, Daddy’s Girl, Includes Kinky, Gay Character!


This Is One Daddy You Don’t Want Blindfolding You!

Okay, what horror fan doesn't like a bit of a throwback to the classics? Nowadays, we're thrown a handful of CGI to bring some of our favorite demons and ghosts to...life...but we've strayed a little bit from the "it could happen to you" horror genre. While I may have some sage in my junk drawer...just in case, I can't help but question: Sometimes, isn't it a little odd people are shrieking in the theaters over something fabricated by Hollywood meant for a scare. We all just witnessed the success of the Netflix film Bird Box and the plenty of memes to come from it, but we never even got to see these haunting monsters. In the good ole' days, a scare from a "monster" such as Michael Myers or Jason Voorhees, crept deep. Sure, they eventually had a supernatural feel to them, but at first, they were honestly just regular guys. Their films carried a vibe: This could be you. Whether you were a horny camp goer or a virgin babysitter, you weren't safe. Recently, a horror short was released via Crypt TV which showcased not only the old trope of this-could-be-you horror, but focuses on a gay character who subtly enjoys anonymous sex!


According to Chicago Pride, Crypt TV released a horror short, Daddy's Girl, written and created by openly gay writer, Mickey Keating, highlights a gay character who may be considered kinky to the majority. Keating tells how imperative it was to not only have a main character who is gay, but also the coveted title of first kill by being the promiscuous "girl":  

"Flick Duvall (Michael Carver-Simmons) is the film's gay character, and hasn't changed since day one, years ago. Flick was never intended to be a bad friend to the titular character, but his sexuality is what did him in due to homophobia. He was living his life, giving advice on men and dating to his girlfriends. As a gay man, I'm aware there are many different subcultures within the LGBT community, especially when it relates to sex. Flick is kinky. He meets his demise while roleplaying in an anonymous sexual scene; he is waiting blindfolded on a bed, thinking it's his should-be-beau coming in for a romp. Unfortunately, it's Ashleigh Frost's (Alicia Rae Underwood) father, Eugene (Rex Mundo and Corey Cannon), who meets him and he is bamboozled. I'm a big supporter of females, as they are the most important people in my life, so I didn't want to sexualize another female to have her get the 'skank' edit and be killed off because of it. I was determined to turn the tables and have the clad character be a gay man who is our first to go. I also wanted to give a little wink to that particular fetish being extremely dangerous. You never know who could be on the other end of that phone call."



In the film, we're also treated to some eye candy in the form of Diesel Johnson (John Davis Jr.) and a cruel, "mean girl" Blogger played fabulously by Stacy Hernandez. While our favorite character, Flick, may not last long; Daddy's Girl is a horror short with moving instrumental music and a to-the-point plot which we can easily watch on our commute or tucked into bed to give us goosebumps and a reminder of what slasher horror used to be.


You can check out the full video of Daddy's Girl here!

Judge Rules Same-Sex Married Couple Can't Live In Retirement Community

A Missouri lesbian couple was told they couldn’t buy a unit in a retirement community because they’re married. 

The women took their case to court, filing a lawsuit alleging sex discrimination.

They lost.

Beverly Nance, 68, and Mary Walsh, 72, have been in a committed relationship for 40 years, and married for ten.

In 2016, the couple visited and applied to move into the Friendship Village Sunset Hills community - doesn’t that sound lovely? - a retirement community near St. Louis. 

They were qualified tenants and they even put down a $2,000 deposit.

But a week after putting down the deposit, a representative of Friendship Village called to inquire about the nature of the women's relationship.

When Walsh informed the rep that they were married, they were told they couldn’t move into Friendship Village because it has a policy that “defined marriage as between a man and a woman” and as “marriage is understood in the Bible.”

So, the women, with the help of the National Center for Lesbian Rights, sued in federal court claiming that the Fair Housing Act (FHA) had been violated.

The FHA bans discrimination on the basis of “race, color, religion, sex, familial status, or national origin.”

“Mary and Bev were denied housing for one reason and one reason only – because they were married to each other rather than to men,” said National Center for Lesbian Rights Senior Staff Attorney Julie Wilensky in a statement. “This is exactly the type of sex discrimination the Fair Housing Act prohibits.”

But U.S. District Judge Jean Hamilton didn’t see it that way and dismissed their case this week, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

“The Court finds the claims boil down to those of discrimination based on sexual orientation rather than sex alone,” wrote Judge Hamilton. “The Eighth Circuit has squarely held that ‘Title VII does not prohibit discrimination against homosexuals.’”

In the state of Missouri, discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity is legal. There are no statewide protections for LGBTQ people in the Show Me state.

The couple's lawyers told reporters, “We disagree with the court’s decision, and our clients are considering next steps.”

(h/t St. Louis Post-Dispatch - image via Facebook/MaryWalsh)

Some Of Our Favorite #TenYearChallenge Posts

Social media has recently embraced a trend of posting side-by-side pictures of yourself in 2009 (or thereabouts) and in 2019, to show the world how life has treated you over the years.

We thought we’d do a round-up of notable LGBTQs, Instagram faves and more who have been taking part in the “How hard did aging hit you?” challenge, aka the “10 Year Challenge.”

Maybe it’s me, but I think most folks look way better with the additional decade than before.

There are posts that are humorous, and some definitely inspiring.

Scrolling through the side-by-side pics, there are folks who seem to have seriously age-defying genes (or are very good at FaceTune), and some are literally different people.

Maybe you love it, maybe you hate it? Let’s take a look.

Eliad Cohen looked great in swim suit ten years ago, but the “Papa Party” prez is just that much hotter today.

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

2009 VS 2019 20 VS 30 Have I changed a lot in these 10 years? #howharddidaginghityouchallenge

A post shared by Eliad Cohen (@eliad_cohen) on

 

Austin Wolf reminisces of the days when he was “young, small and cute.” He was certainly cute, but we think he’s totally hotter now. #Daddy

 

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Long long ago in land far far away. I was young, small and cute. Lol

A post shared by Austin Wolf (@austinwolfff) on

 

Fitness trainer Joel Green barely looks any older, although he’s rocking that beard:

 

 

Laverne Cox shows she’s like a fine wine, just getting better with age:

 

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Ok getting in on the fun. #tenyearchallenge. #howharddidaginghityouch #TransIsBeautiful

A post shared by laverne cox (@lavernecox) on

 

Fitness hottie Bremen Menelli has totally transformed since 2009:

 

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Transformed! 2009-2019 What do you guys think? . . . . . . . #10yearschallenge

A post shared by Bremen Menelli WBFF Pro (@bremen_fitness_) on

 

Jim Newman went even further back than 10 years because he wanted to give as close a matchup as possible. “Save a horse…”

 

 

Dan Tai literally went from boy to man. Man, did he ever!

 

 

Out actor Luke Evans (Beauty and the Beast) reminds us that age is just a number, and he wears his well:

 

 

Trans musician and model Jaimie Wilson admits life’s journey took a different route in his #10yearchallenge:

 

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

I’m Jumping on the #10yearchallenge even though I can’t actually do the challenge correctly because I have zero photos of me from 10 years ago. 10 years ago I was 13 without social media. The photos that exist of me back then I’m unable to have because my parents have them. That’s ok though. The important thing is that I know how much I’ve developed and grown into the man I was destined to become. These challenges are fun and all, and are an awesome reminder of how far I’ve come...but remember changes and growth are far more than physical. That’s something social media forgets sometimes. Love you all . . . #ftm #transgender #transisbeautiful #femaletomale #lgbtpride #mensstyle #singer #boy #trans #instagood #transformation #lgbt #loveislove #musician #blueeyes #pride #nohate #selfie #instadaily #countryboy #fitness #bodytransformation #beforeandafter

A post shared by Jaimie Wilson (@tboy61915) on

 

Fitness trainer Austen Gravett demonstrates that a few years, some gym time and a good barber can be a recipe for hotness:

 

 

Beefy fitness model Quin Bruce rocked a shag haircut back in the day, but he’s totes woofilicious now:

 

 

Olympian Caitlyn Jenner gives you #TenYearChallenge realness with a message of encouraging folks to “Be authentic to yourself:”

 

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Now THAT is a #10YearChallenge Be authentic to yourself

A post shared by Caitlyn Jenner (@caitlynjenner) on

 

And then there’s superstar Mariah Carey, who admits she really doesn’t get the point of the ten year challenge. Writes Mimi, “Time is not something I acknowledge.”

 

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

I don't get this 10 year challenge, time is not something I acknowledge. *Picture taken at some point prior to today

A post shared by Mariah Carey (@mariahcarey) on

 

The opinions expressed here represent those of the author and not of Instinct Magazine or its other contributors.

Hate Group Whines Over Shaun T & Hubby Covering 'Parents' Magazine

A group of ‘Christian’ conservative consumers has lost their collective minds over a gay couple appearing on the cover of a mainstream parenting magazine.

Inspirational fitness coach Shaun T (of the ‘Insanity’ workout) and his husband, Scott Blokker, cover the February issue of Parents magazine as they share their years-long journey to becoming parents to twins Silas and Sander.

Shaun and Scott are the first-ever same-sex couple to appear on the cover of the 93-year-old publication.

In the article, the couple chronicle the “twelve attempts, six egg donors, five surrogates, two doctors, one miscarriage, and thousands of dollars” they went through before the arrival of their children in November of 2017.

 

But the misleadingly-named ‘One Million Moms,’ an off-shoot of the anti-LGBTQ hate group American Family Association, are angry at the coverage.

In a blog post, the group moans, “Parents is using its magazine as a platform to promote the pro-homosexual lifestyle.”

The group, whose Facebook page has nowhere near a million followers, whines that, “Mothers and fathers are seeing more and more similar examples of children being indoctrinated to perceive same-sex couples as normal, especially in the media.”

The haters go on to say that “this agenda is a deal breaker,” although whose ‘deal’ is being broken isn’t clear.

They also accuse Parents of trying to “force a lifestyle on the American public that the medical community identifies as unhealthy.”

Ultimately, OMMs asks folks to sign a petition - from which they could possibly harvest your email address for mass fundraising campaigns - to join in their outrage.

At this writing, the petition has garnered a tepid 7,500 signatures. #Fail

(play sad trombone sound here)

We think Shaun, Scott and family are fabulous. Make sure you click over to the magazine website to read the article.

And since we’re here, let’s take a trip through the fitness buffs’ Instagram account, shall we?

 

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Home sweet Home #family p.s. Major shoutout to the grandparents for surviving twinsanity! #twins

A post shared by Shaun T (@shaunt) on

 

 

 

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

The phrase “love is love” goes beyond sexual orientation. It’s the culmination of freedoms between two people. We all come from different backgrounds but it’s about how much you can accept someone else’s differences as well as accepting the fact that it’s ok for you to be different! It’s ok to be positively you and it’s ok to let others be positively them! •We rarely workout together. •I’m LOUD. He’s Quiet. •He works from a desk. I hate sitting down. •He’s comedy. I’m horror. •I like old fashioned’s. He likes frozen fruity. •I’m salty. He’s sweet. •He’s 47, I’m 40. ....AND WE LOVE IT! #individuallytogether #loveislove #marriage #couple #vacation

A post shared by Shaun T (@shaunt) on

 

 

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Shaun T (@shaunt) on

 

 

The opinions expressed here represent those of the author and not of Instinct nor its other contributors.

(h/t Parents)

Timeless Diva Cher Premieres New 'Here We Go Again' Concert Tour

Cher launched her Here We Go Again concert tour last night at the Ester Germain Arena in Estero, Florida, and we’ve got the pics to prove it.

The Grammy Hall of Famer did not disappoint fans with show-stopping renditions of her biggest hits including “Believe,” “Woman’s World,” and “If I Could Turn Back Time.”

She also reached back to her early hits with video duets of "The Beat Goes On" and "I Got You Babe" with then-husband Sonny Bono.

The set list also included selections from her ABBA cover album Dancing Queen like “Waterloo,” “SOS” and “Fernando.”

And it wouldn’t be a Cher extravaganza without costumes, costumes and more costumes.

Naples News reports that between songs the diva offered personal insights including the fact that she never felt any industry respect until she snagged that Oscar for Moonstruck, telling the audience, "I've never been accepted by singers as a singer, and actors don't think I'm an actor."

The diva is accompanied on this tour by special guests Nile Rodgers & Chic, who released their first album in 26 years last fall titled, It’s About Time.

This concert tour follows the 72-year-old’s busy 2018 which included a featured role in the ABBA-tastic movie musical, Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again; the release of her ABBA cover songs album; plus producing The Cher Show on Broadway, a new musical based on her life story.

Check out more pics from opening night below, and click here to complete tour dates.

The Here We Go Again tour continues through May 18.

(h/t Naples News - photo credit: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Live Nation)

Transgender Patron Wins In Washington DC Bathroom Complaint

During a visit last summer to Cuba Libre, a popular Washington DC bar and restaurant, Charlotte Clymer was stopped as she attempted to use the women restroom by an employee.

The employee demanded to see the transgender woman’s ID claiming the restaurant ‘required’ her to show legal identification to prove she was female.

Clymer, who was at the venue celebrating a friend’s bachelorette party, dismissed the employee and entered the ladies room. According to the Washington Blade, the employee didn’t ask anyone else for identification.

After entering a stall to do her business, Clymer heard the man walk into the bathroom in an attempt to search for her.

“I go into a stall to do my business and I hear him walk in and search for me in this busy restroom full of women,” Clymer shared on her Facebook. “He is doing everything but opening the stall doors. I ignore him, and after a few minutes, he leaves. I do my business, wash my hands, and walk out.”

“On the other side of the door are the attendant and the manager, who says it’s D.C. law that you must have ‘female’ on your ID to use the women’s restroom,” added Clymer. “I tell him he’s wrong and there’s no chance I’m showing him my ID.”

This is where it’s important to note that Clymer works with the Human Rights Campaign, and if anyone knows the law on transgender protections, it’s Clymer. 

In fact, she pulled up the DC Human Rights Act on her phone and showed the manager the ordinance that prohibits discrimination based on gender identity or expression in regard to housing, employment and (ahem) public accommodations.

After the manager, who Clymer described as “condescending and dismissive,”  threatened to call the police, she was eventually ejected from the restaurant.

Standing outside the restaurant, an angry Clymer called the police herself. According to the Washington Post, the officers showed up and reassured her the law was on her side.

Eventually, Clymer filed a complaint with the Office of Human Rights, and the DC Attorney General's office launched an investigation as well.

As a result of her complaint, the owner of Cuba Libre has apologized and been ordered to pay a $7,000 fine for violating the Human Rights Act. Additionally, the settlement with the Attorney General calls for the restaurant to “institute policies on civil rights compliance and training.”

Plus, signage is now required in the establishment that states the local ordinance that “all individuals are allowed to use the restroom that corresponds to their gender identity or expression.”

For her part, Clymer Clymer told the Washington Blade that she’s pleased with the outcome.

“I am quite grateful for the work of Attorney General Racine and his staff to ensure that discrimination has no place in D.C., and I am thankful that Cuba Libre and CEO Barry Gutin have worked in good faith since the fall to ensure that this doesn’t happen again,” Clymer said.

“All parties worked together to make sure a terrible night was turned into a great teaching moment, which was built on the history of advocacy by trans folks in D.C., particularly trans women of color,” she added.

(h/t Washington Blade)

Brian Sims Got Put In Facebook Timeout When A Social Media Troll Called Him A 'F*gg*t'

We love that woofy, gay Pennsylvania state legislator Brian Sims does not back down from trolls and haters.

Last week when a woman who appeared to be named “Jill Freb” sent him a message on social media reading, “You get out, f*gg*t,” Sims didn’t pause to share the comment with his followers.

Sims wrote, “Anyone know my new friend Jill?” as he posted a pic of the comment and asked his peeps to report the comment to the powers that be at Facebook.

But then, is a strange reversal, Sims himself was blocked from posting on his own account for sharing Kreb’s homophobic comment.

“Last night, I got back from the governor’s swearing-in ceremony,” Sims told Metro Weekly. “I went to put up some information about the swearing-in and a trans candidate who’s announcing a campaign today, and I got a notification that, because of that specific post with her telling me to “get out” and calling me a “faggot” — not even the other posts associated with it — I had been blocked from all my accounts, both public and personal.”

 

Eventually, Sims got his Facebook account reinstated, admittedly because he happens to know some folks there. 

 

But Sims wasn’t done with the issue.

He went on to say he never received any “explanation from Facebook Diversity, Government and Politics on Facebook or Facebook HQ” about the lockdown.

Eventually, Facebook responded to MetroWeekly with a statement regarding the ‘mistake.’

“We allow people to share messages they receive even hateful ones,” wrote the Facebook spokesman. “Removing this post was a mistake in misunderstanding that it was discussing a message Representative Sims had himself experienced. The post does not violate our Community Standards and has been restored and Representative Sims is no longer in a feature block.”

But Sims still has concerns for the free speech of those who may not have his connections or position.

“I have dozens of connections to Facebook and had to use all of them to fix this,” he wrote. “What happens to the person who doesn’t know anyone there?”

“This isn’t just about getting my Facebook page turned back on,” said Sims. “This either needs to continue or start a conversation about what Facebook is doing, authentically, substantively, to make sure they’re not culling legitimate speech and not endorsing, supporting, or lifting up illegitimate speech — whether it’s hate speech or fake accounts.”

(h/t MetroWeekly)

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