News Round-Up: February 26, 2021

Dan Reynolds of Imagine Dragons
Dan Reynolds of Imagine Dragons
Dan Reynolds of Imagine Dragons (photo via Instagram)

Some news items you might have missed:

KTNV: Imagine Dragons frontman Dan Reynolds (above) is donating his childhood home in Las Vegas to help LGBTQ youth. Reynolds’ home will serve as Nevada’s first-ever Encircle Resource Center which helps more than 70,000 kids and their families each year.

Instinct Magazine: Benjamin Davis has been charged with capital murder in the death of a man Harris County deputies said he targeted for robbery. His tool? The gay dating app Grindr.

Kenneth-in-the-212: Check out the weekly round-up of the what’s what in LGBTQ publications like Wilson Lai (below) covering DNA Magazine.

Cover of DNA Magazine
(image via DNA Magazine)

Reuters: The U.S. Justice Department has charged more than 300 people with taking part in the deadly storming of the Capitol by former President Donald Trump’s supporters, and at least 280 have been arrested.

The Advocate: A worker at KFC was fired for screaming ‘f*cking queers’ at a gay couple picking up food via the drive-through window.

Stonewall Gazette: The short film, The Dirt Between My Fingers, follows an unlikely friendship when two boys meet under strange circumstances. A coming (out) of age short film about first love.

Dan Reynolds Uses Billboard Music Awards Speech To Call For Ending Conversion Therapy

Dan Reynolds of Imagine Dragons at 2019 Billboard Music Awards

During last night’s Billboard Music Awards telecast from Las Vegas, Imagine Dragons frontman Dan Reynolds used the band’s acceptance speech time for winning Top Rock Artists to call for a nationwide ban on so-called conversion therapy.

“I just want to take this moment to say that there are still 34 states that don’t have laws banning conversion therapy,” said Reynolds backed by his band mates Wayne Sermon, Ben McKee, and Daniel Platzman. “On top of that, 58 percent of our LGBTQ population live in those states. This can change, but it’s going to take all of us talking to our state legislature, pushing forward laws to protect our LGBTQ youth.”

“And lastly, we have seen with conversion therapy that our LGBTQ youth have double the rate of depression, triple the rate of suicide after conversion therapy,” he added. “It’s not working and needs to change.”

Major medical organizations like the American Medical Association, the American Psychiatric Association and the American Academy of Pediatrics have all denounced ‘conversion therapy’ which treats being gay as a mental illness.

Also known as ‘ex-gay therapy,’ the practice has been shown to lead to depression, decreased self-esteem, substance abuse, anxiety and, in some cases, suicidal behavior.

Currently, 16 states plus Washington D.C. have banned the harmful practice on minors.

Reynolds, a longtime LGBTQ ally, has spent years standing up for the community. Growing up Mormon in Utah, he saw close friends struggle to resolve being gay with their families and faith.

Reynolds does a lot more than make speeches at award shows, though.

He teamed up with former Mormon rocker Tyler Glenn to create the annual music festival LOVELOUD which aims to raise money for LGBTQ charities and organizations like The Trevor Project and the Tegan and Sara Foundation.

He also helped produce the documentary Believer, which explores how the Mormon Church treats its LGBTQ members.

Last month, Reynolds took to Twitter calling for religious leaders to help stop the practice of so-called ‘conversion therapy.

News Round-Up: September 4, 2018

Some news items you might have missed:

• How about some ‘Transformation Tuesday?’ I’ve featured InstaHunk and paleontologist Francesc Gascó many times on The Randy Report. But check out his before/after pic above. Francesc notes, “The biggest change is on the inside.”

• A new documentary, American Circumcision, looks at the effects of circumcision and a movement to end the practice in the United States.

• Donald Trump’s lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, says the Trumpster will try to block the release of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s final report. Because that’s what innocent people do? #AbuseOfPower

• The Vatican has now admitted representatives lied about whether the Pope knew who Kentucky County Clerk Kim Davis was when he met with her in private in 2015.

• Scientists now say no amount of alcohol may be safe to drink. #RuhRoh

• Eminem released his new album last Friday and already there’s scandal surrounding it as the rapper chooses to use the word “faggot.” LGBTQ ally and Imagine Dragons front man Dan Reynolds was not having it:

Imagine Dragons’ Dan Reynolds Wants To Change How Mormon Church Sees LGBTQ Youth

LGBTQ ally Dan Reynolds, of Imagine Dragons, wants the Mormon Church to rethink how it views LGBTQ youth
Dan Reynolds of Imagine Dragons

How much do we love Grammy Award-winning Imagine Dragons frontman, Dan Reynolds?

Raised Mormon, Reynolds has spent years fighting for greater LGBTQ acceptance within the church.

Growing up, the native Utahn had a middle school friend who was Mormon and gay, and he watched how the struggles of trying to resolve the two worlds wore on his friend. Reynolds also says he’s lost high school friends to suicide.

Determined to affect change, he and former Mormon rocker Tyler Glenn teamed up last year to create the annual music festival LoveLoud held in Salt Lake City which aims to raise money for LGBTQ charities and organizations like The Trevor Project and the Tegan and Sara Foundation.

This year the event takes place on July 28.

“I think the LoveLoud stage is the most important stage I will ever stand on,” the 30-year-old recently told Queerty. “The festival has helped facilitate vital conversation about what it means to truly love and accept our LGBTQ youth.”

New documentary 'Believer' follows Dan Reynolds mission to perpetuate change within the Mormon Church and how it treats LGBTQ youth

The new documentary, Believer, follows Reynolds as he launched the music festival last year and also explores how the Mormon Church treats its LGBTQ members.

“I hope people understand the importance of fully accepting and loving our LGBTQ youth,” says Reynolds about the film. “I hope people are able to watch and feel the harsh realities that our LGBTQ youth are facing in faith-based communities. I hope it perpetuates change.”

Watch the trailer for Believer below and check out info for LoveLoud Music Festival here.