World cycling bans trans women, Troye Sivan feels the ‘Rush’ and more

6 queer and trans stories we’re watching: July 17

Welcome back to Monday! It’s a new week, which means we’ve rounded up five of the biggest stories in queer news, so you can get up to date in just a few minutes. From Hungarian bookstores fighting homophobia to Troye Sivan’s latest music video, Xtra has you covered, so read on for your Monday newsflash. 

1. A Hungarian bookstore received a huge fine for selling a Heartstopper graphic novel
2. World cycling’s governing body banned trans women from competing in women’s events
3. Swatch is suing Malaysia over the seizure of Pride watches
4. The Montana State Library has withdrawn from the oldest and largest library association because its president described herself as a “Marxist lesbian”
5. The second annual Come Home Queer festival in Newfoundland’s ​​Small Point-Adam’s Cove-Blackhead-Broad Cove happened this weekend
6. Troye Sivan’s latest song, “Rush,” debuted with a sweaty and sexy music video—but some fans are disappointed at the lack of diversity on display

1. A Hungarian bookstore received a huge fine for selling a Heartstopper graphic novel

Hungarian bookstore Lira Kiskereskedelmi Kft was fined after they were found selling queer graphic novel Heartstopper without covering it in plastic foil, a violation of a law that bans LGBTQ+ literature for under-18s. 

The graphic novel follows a love story between two teenage boys, something officials say counts as “display and promotion of homosexuality,” as per the 2021 law. The Budapest metropolitan government office issued the fine, which totals 12m forints (about CAD $47,500), because the book was not in “closed packaging,” with a spokesperson for the office telling PinkNews that they “will always take strict action against companies that do not comply with the law.”

The store’s creative director Krisztian Nyary has since said the fine was disproportionate, and that the bookstore would respond legally.

2. World cycling’s governing body banned trans women from competing in women’s events

In a reversal of previous policy, the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) announced last week that it will no longer permit trans women who transitioned after their endogenous puberty to compete in women’s events. Previously, the organization had allowed trans women to compete in women’s events if they maintained a plasma testosterone level of 2.5 nanomoles per litre for two months prior to and during competitions.

The decision comes after a review prompted by cyclist Austin Killips’s winning the the Tour of the Gila in New Mexico in April. Killips called out the transphobic sentiment behind the ruling in a Substack post, criticizing the “right-wingers who want nothing but the worst for the world” and adding, “I do not need to line up at a World Cup again, but I won’t be able to sleep at night if I’m not fighting for the next woman who deserves a shot at everything this sport has given me.”

 

3. Swatch is suing Malaysia over the seizure of Pride watches

Swiss watch company Swatch is suing the Malaysian government over their seizure of 172 Pride-themed watches, an action they say has no legal basis. 

The company filed a suit with the High Court in Kuala Lumpur, arguing that their watches “did not and are not in any way capable of causing any disruption to public order or morality or any violations of the law.” The watches themselves were seized back in May, in targeted raids on 16 outlets across the country.

The case is set to be heard in the High Court later this week. 

4. The Montana State Library has withdrawn from the oldest and largest library association because its president described herself as a “Marxist lesbian”

The Montana State Library voted to leave the American Library Association (ALA), the world’s oldest and largest library association, because the ALA’s president described herself as a “Marxist lesbian” in a since-deleted social media post from over a year ago.

The ALA president, Emily Drabinski, began her role this month, tweeting in April 2022 her pride in being appointed to the position. 

“I just cannot believe that a Marxist lesbian who believes that collective power is possible to build and can be wielded for a better world is the president-elect of @ALALibrary,” she had tweeted.

Tom Burnett, a Montana State Library Commission member motioned to “immediately withdraw” from the ALA in response, additionally proposing to send a letter to the organization explaining that their duty to the Constitution “forbids association with an organization led by a Marxist.”

The ALA published a statement in response, highlighting how Montana libraries have received over USD $218,000 in grants from the ALA, as well as operating various programs and projects from which the library benefits. 

5. The second annual Come Home Queer festival in Newfoundland’s ​​Small Point-Adam’s Cove-Blackhead-Broad Cove happened this weekend

Come Home Queer, a festival in the tiny Newfoundland community of Small Point-Adam’s Cove-Blackhead-Broad Cove celebrated its second year this weekend with three days of Pride-themed fun for the community.

The festival, which is free, featured a Pride flag-raising at the local town hall, as well as a premiere of a local film celebrating the project and a dance party. 

Organizers told CBC that the festival takes place in the Conception Bay North community, where Small Point-Adam’s Cove-Blackhead-Broad Cove is located, because of the area’s history of lesbian community-building. 

“A little over 30 years ago, a number of older lesbians came into this small community when it was difficult,” organizer Gerry Rogers told CBC. “Eventually, as we got to know one another, the town and the lesbians grew to love one another, to respect one another, to welcome one another.” 

Small Point-Adam’s Cove-Blackhead-Broad Cove has a population of just over 400 people.

6. Troye Sivan’s latest song “Rush” debuted with a sweaty and sexy music video—but some fans are disappointed at the lack of diversity on display

Queer singer Troye Sivan released his latest single, “Rush,” alongside a sweaty, sexy music video that sees camera shots taken through glory holes, and a whole bunch of nudity.

Fans have praised the song and its video for its unabashed queerness, which is hopefully just a taste of what’s to come on Sivan’s much-anticipated album, “Something to Give Each Other,” which drops on Oct. 13.

But other fans felt that Sivan’s video could’ve gone further in terms of representation of body types. One fan said that while they love Sivan’s music, they felt let down by the video.

“I adore Troye Sivan, but this ‘Rush’ video is making me feel some type of way,” Rolling Stone journalist Tomás Mier said in a tweet. “It seems like a case study on how white gays choose to view queer people as a whole. There’s not a single fat person in the entire video. Just white twinks and chiselled bodies.”

🌈Bonus good news (because we need it)🌈

We’re a little obsessed with this Megan Rapinoe lesbian anime Nike ad… full show when? 👀

Eve Cable is a reporter based at The Eastern Door in Kahnawà:ke. Her work has also been featured in Filter Magazine, The Rover, The Hoser, and more.

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