It must be said that for all the setbacks and disappointments we face day after day, election after election, year after year, sometimes we actually do manage to score a victory or two. In the last week Texas and Nevada both just gave you some new reasons to head West, young men (and women and people who would rather not/do not conform to either gender):
Houston, Texas: City controller -- and lesbian -- Annise Parker (above) beat former city attorney Gene Locke in the city's mayoral race, making Houston the largest city in the United States with a queer person presiding over city hall. "Tonight the voters of Houston have opened the door to history," Parker said. "I acknowledge that. I embrace that. I know what this win means to many of us who never thought we could achieve high office." Chuck Wolfe, president of the Victory Fund which backed Parker, added, "This is an important milestone for our country, but it's equally important to know voters in Houston chose Annise even after a flurry of antigay campaigns designed to divide and distract voters. This time the extremists failed. Houstonians rejected their tactics and voted for the most experienced and competent candidate to lead this city forward."
Nevada: The Nevada board of health has ruled that brothels in the state are now legally allowed to employ male prostitutes. Under an old law men were prohibited from providing legal sex work because they could not undergo cervical testing for STDs -- a requirement by the state. So, Bobbi Davis, who runs the Shady Lady Ranch, challenged the law in order to add men to her brothel's roster. Women and gay men will be able to visit the Ranch beginning in January to request the services of male prostitutes. The Advocate reports that "George Flint, a lobbyist for the Nevada Brothel Owners Association, said he 'reluctantly' agreed to the change because he couldn't oppose regulation for one gender and not the other."
For more information on these stories and more, head to Advocate.com.