10 must-read LGBTQ stories from July

If you missed any of July’s most popular LGBTQ stories, we have you covered. From movie executives killing “Scooby Doo” fans’ “lesbian Velma dreams” to claims that a transgender prisoner was “set up” after making a #MeToo complaint, it was a busy month for queer news.

Valentina Sampaio for Sports Illustrated Swimsuit 2020 on sale July 21.Josie Clough / Sports Illustrated

Trans model makes Sports Illustrated Swimsuit history

Sports Illustrated featured its first openly transgender model for the magazine’s annual swimsuit issue. Valentina Sampaio was named a 2020 Rookie of the Year for its issue that hit stands on July 21, marking the first time a trans beauty is featured on the pages of the iconic publication. (July 10, 2020)

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The U.S. national flag and an LGBT pride flag hoisted on the front facade of the U.S. Embassy in Moscow.Valery Sharifulin / Valery Sharifulin/TASS

Putin mocks U.S. Embassy for flying rainbow flag

President mocked the U.S. Embassy in Moscow for flying a rainbow flag to celebrate LGBTQ rights, suggesting it reflected the sexual orientation of its staff. (July 5, 2020)

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From left, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Linda Cardellini, Matthew Lillard and Freddie Prinze Jr. in “Scooby-Doo.”Village Road Show / Hanna Barbera

‘Scooby-Doo’ writer says studio killed fans’ ‘lesbian Velma dreams’

“Scooby-Doo” writer James Gunn revealed that his plan to feature the brainy detective Velma as an “explicitly gay” character in the 2002 live-action movie was axed by studio executives. (July 13, 2020)

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Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks during a news conference at the State Department in Washington, on July 15, 2020.Andrew Harnik / AFP – Getty Images

Pompeo says U.S. should limit which human rights it defends

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo argued for a more limited U.S. view of global human rights advocacy based on the principals laid out by America’s Founding Fathers, a suggestion critics assumed meant stepping away from more modern concepts such as support for women and the LGBTQ communities around the world. (July 17, 2020)

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The Bloomsburg Fairground in 2013.Jimmy May / Bloomsburg Press Enterprise via AP

A Pennsylvania fair becomes ensnared in online transphobia

A charity event in Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania, became fodder for controversy after a social media post compared a man in a dunk tank — who was wearing a dress, blond wig and glasses — to the state’s health secretary, Dr. Rachel Levine, who is transgender and has been leading the state’s coronavirus response. (July 22, 2020)

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North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum speaks in Bismarck on March 20, 2020.Tom Stromme / The Bismarck Tribune via AP file

North Dakota governor blasts party’s anti-LGBTQ resolution

North Dakota’s Republican governor blasted an anti-LGBTQ resolution that was passed by hundreds of his party’s delegates, calling it insulting and divisive. (July 24, 2020)

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Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson addresses attendees at First Baptist Church Dallas during a Celebrate Freedom Rally in Dallas, on June 28, 2020.Tony Gutierrez / AP

Trump admin. moves to repeal trans protections in homeless shelters

The Department of Housing and Urban Development plans to move forward with a measure that would permit federally funded homeless shelters to house transgender clients according to their sex assigned at birth. (July 2, 2020)

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Plaintiff Jesse Hammons.Jason Chesnut / ACLU

Trans man files discrimination suit after hospital cancels hysterectomy

A transgender man is suing the University of Maryland Medical System in federal court, claiming his rights were violated when his gender-affirming surgery was canceled by one of the hospital system’s subsidiaries. (July 22, 2020)

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C. Jay Smith.Medina Orthwein LLP

California prison officials are staring down yet another lawsuit from a transgender woman who says she was abused in custody. (July 7, 2020)

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Marsha P. JohnsonNetflix

Petitioners want Marsha P. Johnson statue to replace Columbus monument

More than 75,000 people have signed on to a petition to have a statue of Marsha P. Johnson erected in her hometown of Elizabeth, New Jersey, in place of its existing Christopher Columbus monument. (July 1, 2020)

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