Grindr wants people to be Kindr

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Grindr, a premiere sex and dating app for queer people (though men comprise the platform’s predominant user base), has launched what appears to be a new initiative, according to a slightly cryptic post to the brand’s official Instagram account. The post features audio messages of intertwining various voices. One such message is someone saying, “When [someone] says to me that I don’t date black people… that can be referred to as sexual racism.” There’s a logo reading “Kindr,” using Grindr’s logo.

*sound on* 🔊 It’s time to play nice. Dropping September 2018.

A post shared by Grindr (@grindr) on

Grindr has faced criticism from users since its inception from those who have been subjected to types of mistreatment — including, in some cases,violent anti-gay hate crimes — based on the notions of individually defined sexual preferences, usually by cisgender men.

Some users have sworn off the app completely due to experiencing discrimination, and, as mentioned, Grindr is no stranger to criticism, or even lawsuits, around what constitutes acceptable free speech, and best internal practices for monitoring forms of hate speech without censoring sexual preference.

It’s tricky, and only time will tell how this all shakes out, but if Grindr pulls off its Kindr campaign with tangible results, it may actually be something of a revolution in the queer community. This also comes on the heels of trans model and activist Munroe Bergdorf’s announcement of her involvement with Grindr, after publicly acknowledging the platform’s need to call out racists and transphobic users.

(German users might face some uncomfortable questions once people see an app called Kindr on their phones though…)

Summer Penis?

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We’ve all heard about “shrinkage,” but there’s a theory that a penis grows larger in warmer weather, too. As the temperature rises, some people swear they get “summer penis,” adding a few cm in length and girth down below. An article in MEL magazine explored this phenomenon, quoting several Reddit users who say the heat led to bigger penises, better erections and larger testicles.x

“Bigger dick in summer and smaller in winter?” posted a Redditor named Guillermo in 2016. “Anybody notices size fluctuation during the year? I know mine is bigger, I have better erections in the summer and I also tend more to of a shower instead of a grower. In the winter, it is the exact contrary. Why is that? More heat = better blood flow? Does that happen to you guys also?”

A number of users piped up to agree: One claimed that in deep winter his penis is about two inches soft. In the hot months, though, it can swell to twice that size (even larger “if I don’t masturbate for a few days”). Another revealed that he had “summer balls”: “I mean, when it’s hot they like to go down like if they were trying to get to my knee. In winter or cold days they look like a little hard brain.”

Of course, people have been scheming to upsize their shlongs for centuries, but there may be some science to summer penis. “When it’s hot outside, you may take in more water, which may in combination with the sweating make it appear like your body or skin is bloated,” urologist Dr. Jamin Brahmbhatt told MEL. “And that may give you the perception that things are larger.”

And, just like blood vessels contract when confronted with cold, they expand when warm to regulate heat. “The warmer the ambient environment, the more the blood vessels dilate, and the warmth allowing vasodilation increases blood flow,” urologist Dudley Danoff says. “So if we think of the penis as these two sausage casings that fill with blood, and the one channel that carries the urine, then the sausage casing will swell and expand to its genetic limit depending on the volume of blood. The increased blood flow will increase, and the corpora [the erectile tissue] will be expanded, and the penis will be ‘larger.’”

Unsettling metaphors about sausage aside, Danoff says the increased blood flow wouldn’t hold true when the penis is flaccid, but Dr. Jesse Mills director of the Men’s Clinic at UCLA disagrees. Mills has told Health.com, “penile size in the flaccid state is purely a function of how much blood flow is circulating in the penis. The warmer the environment, the more ‘show’ a man is going to have.”

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Gay Teen gets kicked out by Parents, still finds Success

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For almost all kids the senior year of high school is fraught with stress, obstacles and challenges. But its safe to say most teens don’t have the year Seth Owen just faced: In the middle of his sophomore year in Jacksonville, Florida, his father decided to take an unapproved dive into his son’s cell phone, and in doing so realised Owen was gay.

His Christian parents gave him an ultimatum: submit to so-called “gay-conversion therapy” and attend their anti-queer church or leave the house. Speaking to News4Jax, Owen explained, “They made it clear the intention was to make me straight.”

While he continued to live with his parents, Seth found reasons to stay away from home. From after-school programs to swimming, Owen says he felt like he was “doing something good with the struggle instead of doing something damaging.” When he finally put his foot down about the anti-LGBTQ church, he was forced to move out this past February with no financial or emotional support from his parents.

“I was really, really upset,” Owen shares. “It was extremely hurtful to know that I was walking out that door not knowing what lay ahead and feeling I don’t know how to explain it, it was devastating, absolutely devastating.”

Sleeping on friends couches and holding down jobs to support himself, Owen did what seems almost impossible: he maintained a 4.16 GPA becoming the co-valedictorian of First Coast High School’s class of 2018.

Owen had already been accepted to Georgetown University receiving a $50,000 scholarship. But, the remaining $27,000 of the $77,000 annual tuition was to be covered by his parents. With no support in sight from his parents, one of Owen’s teachers created a crowd funding campaign that received more than twice as much money as needed.

“I don’t think thank you is good enough,” Owen says. “Of course I am extremely grateful, but I think thank you doesn’t say it. Now it’s time to pay it forward.” With an inspiring attitude, Owen says he plans to become a defence attorney for neglected teens who find themselves in situations like his.

Research found that American kids & teens that are queer are twice as likely to face homelessness than straight youth, and those who are homeless are at a significantly higher risk of violence and death compared to straight youth.

Talent Show Drag Act is illegal, School tells Teenage Boy

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A school has been criticised by a teenager and his family for blocking his participation in its end-of-term talent show because he wanted to perform in drag. Lewis, who is 14, said that he was left distraught after spending weeks perfecting a lip-sync dance routine only to be told on the eve of the event that he could not take part.

“I’m heartbroken and confused. After all the effort I have put into it, it has knocked my confidence a lot,” said Lewis, a student at an visual arts college in Dudley, England. “When I’m in drag I feel I’m truly being myself,” said the teenager, who has always loved dancing and decided he wanted to be a drag performer after watching the television show RuPaul’s Drag Race.

The school’s principal maintains that its decision was entirely made on the basis that it was not “age appropriate” for young people to perform drag acts. Lewis’ mother claimed the school’s legal team said that it was illegal for people under 18 to take part in drag act competitions and accused it of inventing the law because they “don’t accept him for who he is”.

Lewis has performed in drag at home, and his family say his new hobby has helped him overcome a lack of confidence. His performance, which was to have been his first in public, was a dance to a medley of tracks he mixed with his stepfather, including songs by Little Mix, Ariana Grande and RuPaul, and he was planning to wear a blazer, skirt, a silver wig and high heels bought for him by his grandmother.

Michelle King, the principal, said the school was inclusive and celebrated diversity. “We made the decision that it was not age appropriate for either the learner and for the intended audience, his peer group, for Lewis to appear as a ‘drag act’,” she said.

“We understood Lewis wanted to appear in the style of RuPaul, whose style of performance is characterised by strong language and sexual innuendo. We invited Lewis to appear in the show as a singer and were happy for him to dress in any manner he wished.”

Meanwhile Lewis was invited to perform at DragWorld UK, “Europe’s largest celebration of drag,” alongside some of the biggest names in drag like Violet Chachki and Courtney Act. The convention’s website promises that Athena Heart will perform “the very routine his school banned” in London this August.

“I’m very excited about my DragWorld invite to perform and get my name out there so others just like me know that it’s ok to be different,” Lewis said. He’s the only drag performer on DragWorld UK’s front page who didn’t compete on RuPaul’s Drag Race.

Ezra Miller cosplays as sexy Toadette at Comic-Con

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Comic-Con regularly attracts a wealth of talented and dedicated cosplayers for attendees to marvel at, but it’s not just fans who get in on the fun. Celebrities have been known to show up incognito on the exhibition floor, although some are far more open about their love for costuming, like Ezra Miller, who showed up for his third straight Con in an amazing get-up. And this year was his best–and also his sexiest–as he appeared as a very adult Toadette.

While most of the cast of the upcoming Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald  showed up for the film’s panel dressed in normal clothes, Ezra appeared on stage in front of thousands of fans as Toadette from Super Mario Bros. That alone would make for one of the best costumes in San Diego this year, because Toadette is definitely on the more obscure side.

But it’s even more exciting because he upped his getup considerably. Instead of including Toadette’s pink dress, he wore a mushroom head with her pink vest, a scarf with pink balls, and pink fishnet stockings.

German Alt-Rights not allowed to attend Pride, cry a river

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Germany’s biggest far-right party is complaining that Berlin Pride organisers refused to let its youth group have a booth, reports Berliner Zeitung.

The Alternative for Germany party is known for outrageous nationalist rhetoric and drafting unpassable legislation that plays into its base’s sense of victimhood. The youth wing, Junge Alternative, whose leader recently said that Adolf Hitler was mere “bird shit” in over a millennium of otherwise successful German history, applied to have a presence at Berlin’s Pride festivities but was rejected.

David Eckert, the 26-year-old head of the Junge Alternative Berlin chapter, wrote a Facebook post expressing his outrage that his group was not welcome at Berlin’s Christopher Street Day celebration July 28.

Eckert posted an “email exchange” between him and the event organizers who denied the request. In it, Pride leaders told him the festivities needed a “climate of acceptance” that was welcoming to refugees. They also rejected the group because its application came in past the deadline.

“Not every gay person wears vinyl and leather, struts around with a handbag and paints their nails,” Eckert said. He then quoted a poll stating 12 percent of German LGBT voters supported the alt-right party and asked if he could apply for next year’s Pride.

In a dazzling show of cognitive dissonance the party while committed to its anti-immigrant and anti-queer-rights platform, has sought to attract more queer voters. Its current leader, Alice Weidel, is a lesbian. However, during her candidacy, the party threatened to sue the German Parliament for legalising same-sex marriage last year.

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One Size definitely doesn’t fit all (when it comes to Condoms)

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Pasante, one of the largest independent condom manufacturers in the UK, has released a condom sizer card that allows people to slip their boners into differently sized holes, all to determine what size condom will work best for them.

While it’s super important to use condoms that actually fit your penis size, we hope Pasante’s condom sizer card isn’t made solely out of hard cardboard, because sticking your penis into that would hurt.

According to one custom-size condom manufacturer, various condom studies have shown that one-size-fits-all condoms don’t actually fit anywhere from 40–45% of people with penises. Either the condoms are too long, too short, too tight or too loose.

When a condom is too tight it can be difficult to put on quickly and it can uncomfortably constrict the penis, causing pain and reducing blood flow, both of which can lead to a loss of the erection. When a condom is too loose it bunches up near the base, which can reduce sexual stimulation and even run the risk of slipping off during sex.

Often gay folks will use whatever condoms they get for free at the gay bar, or they’ll just buy whatever’s cheapest at the drug store, but it’s a good idea to really examine and experiment to see which ones are going to work best for you.

A few years ago extra small condoms for teens between 12 and 14 went on sale in Switzerland. Called the Hotshot, the condom has been produced after government research showed that teenagers did not use sufficient protection when having sex.