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George Takei unhappy with gay Sulu scene in ‘Star Trek Beyond’

actor was unimpressed with big reveal

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(Screenshot via YouTube)

(Screenshot via YouTube)

George Takei is still unhappy about the portrayal of Sulu in the “Star Trek Beyond” film. In an interview with Digital Spy he explains why he was disappointed in the character.

“They talked about Sulu becoming gay, but it was such a tentative thing. Shakespeare said it: ‘Full of sound and fury, signifying nothing,'” Takei says. “Sulu comes back, picks up the little girl and hugs her, and then puts his arm around a guy and they walk off…not even a kiss. Just hugging the baby and arm around the guy… and it’s over.”

Takei also speculated on how “Star Trek” creator Gene Roddenberry might have incorporated a gay storyline into the modern franchise.

“He would’ve created a gay character who has his own history in this kind of society and explored what kind of issues he would have to deal with, and how he would’ve expressed himself, and how society would’ve dealt with him. All those potentials are there – and yet…,”Takei says.

In July Takei told the Hollywood Reporter he wasn’t pleased with Sulu being a gay character because “it’s a twisting of Gene’s creation, to which he put in so much thought. I think it’s really unfortunate.”

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The Washington Renegades: 25 years of kicking and camaraderie

Nation’s first LGBTQ rugby club heads to Rome for major tournament

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The Washington Renegades are celebrating 25 years.

In June of 2003, Ned Kieloch decided to go to an LGBTQ-inclusive men’s rugby practice on one Tuesday. He jokes that he never left. 

It was a long time coming — Kieloch had picked up a flyer for the team, the Washington Renegades, about three years earlier at Millennium March on Washington in 2000. He forgot about it until he moved to D.C. in 2003 when he got more information at Pride. Kieloch realized the practice was right down the street from where he lived at the time. 

Kieloch, who’s the current president of the Washington Renegades all these years later, has been actively involved since that first Tuesday practice. He took on his first officer position after just six months of joining the team.  

“I just fell in love with the game and with the guys, and I’ve never looked back,” Kieloch said. 

The Washington Renegades, founded in the fall of 1998 in D.C. as the first LGBTQ inclusive men’s rugby club in North America, is gearing up to commemorate its 25th anniversary. The group, made up of mainly men, is also traveling to Rome to play in an international gay rugby tournament this month. 

Kieloch played on the team for about a decade, then went on to support the team off the field. Since his time with the Washington Renegades, he’s seen the team through 100-point losses and winning seasons. 

Now, he’s heading to Rome with current players and team alumni to take part in the Bingham Cup, the biennial world championships of gay rugby. 

Washington Renegades (Photo courtesy of the Renegades)

Jetting to Rome 

This tournament first took place in 2002 in Mark Bingham’s memory, who was a gay rugby player among the passengers aboard United Airlines Flight 93. Along with a few others, he fought against hijackers on Sept. 11, 2001. This effort resulted in the crash of the plane in Pennsylvania, which prevented the hijackers from crashing it into a building in D.C. Bingham played for the gay rugby team the San Francisco Fog and helped to organize the Gotham Knights team in New York City. 

The Bingham Cup has been hosted in San Francisco, Nashville, London, and Amsterdam, among other cities around the world. 

About 60 people with the Washington Renegades will travel to Rome for the Bingham Cup, which runs from May 23-26. More than 100 teams will be participating, with about 5,000 players in total. 

Kai Walther, the team’s community engagement chair, said he’s looking forward to connecting with and learning from other queer people from other global teams. The LGBTQ rugby community is only so big in the United States, he said, and he’s excited to meet more people with his same passion. 

“There’s an understanding,” he said. “We all play this sport. We all are putting our bodies on the line for this.”

Nick DiNardo, who’s been a part of the Washington Renegades for two seasons, was looking for a place to play sports that was also connected to his identity. He got in contact with Kieloch, and like his own experience two decades ago, DiNardo was immediately all in. 

Growing up playing sports and hiding his identity, DiNardo said having queer-focused teams like the Washington Renegades is integral to building safe spaces where people can bond while doing something they love. 

“I’ve really developed a family,” DiNardo said. “We … support creating a space that’s open, inclusive, and safe for anyone who wants to come and learn and have a good time.”

Straight people are also a part of the team, which Kieloch says reflects the team’s values. 

“I think that’s one of the best things about our club,” Kieloch said. “I just love the camaraderie of it.”

Walther joined the Washington Renegades in the summer of 2023. He loves being on the team for several reasons — to meet new people and be able to be a part of a team where he feels he can be his entire queer self.

Because of the nature of the sport, trust is necessary, he said. This comes easier when everyone on the team has the same inclusive and accepting frame of mind. 

“There’s so much happening on the field. Like hitting other people, we have to get really close to each other, and support each other on tackles against other teams,” he said. “And so when we’re all on the same page, it makes us a lot stronger.”

Washington Renegades (Photo courtesy of the Renegades)
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PHOTOS: PrEP for Pride

White Plains LGBTQ celebration held by Charles County Department of Health

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A scene from PrEP for Pride at the Charles County Department of Health in White Plains, Md. on May 18. (Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

The second annual PrEP for Pride LGBTQIA+ Pride Festival was held on Saturday, May 18 on the campus of the Charles County Department of Health in White Plains, Md.

(Washington Blade photos by Michael Key)

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PHOTOS: Capital Trans Pride

Annual event features workshops, vendors, awards

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Workshops and panel discussions were held throughout the day in the auditorium of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Library during Capital Trans Pride on Saturday, May 18. (Washington Blade photo by Michael Key)

Capital Trans Pride was held at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Library on Saturday, May 18. The day-long annual event included workshops, panel discussions, vendors, an awards ceremony and more.

(Washington Blade photos by Michael Key)

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