With so much hate continually aimed at the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community, we like to take a moment every once in a while to highlight some of the good news featured on The Huffington Post.
Every other weekend HuffPost Gay Voices offers its "Something To Celebrate" feature, a round up of the best LGBT moments from the week before.
It's a great way to catch up on the stories that you might have missed during the last seven days -- not to mention a much needed reminder that though the LGBT community still faces many enemies and it must continue to fight, it's making gains and beautiful things happen in and to the LGBT community every day.
Have a look at 10 of the best LGBT stories from the past week and then let us know what your favorite moment was in the comments section below:
Transgender Rapper Mykki Blanco Premieres 'Wavvy' Video
If you haven't heard of Mykki Blanco before, don't blame yourself too much. The female alter ego of transgender rapper Michael David Quattlebaum had been somewhat of an underground phenomenon until recently. But now she's been getting heaps of love for her fierce (and we mean that literally, not in the passe late-'90s way) rap skills and has been praised by everyone from the <em><a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/19/fashion/the-evolution-of-michael-quattlebaum-jr-a-k-a-mykki-blanco.html" target="_hplink">New York Times</a></em> to <em><a href="http://www.spin.com/articles/see-mykki-blancos-brave-join-my-militia-clip" target="_hplink">Spin</a></em> magazine. Blanco was "born" last summer when Quattlebaum, who had been releasing music under the name No Fear and is also a poet, writer and a fixture on the downtown NYC art scene, <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/19/fashion/the-evolution-of-michael-quattlebaum-jr-a-k-a-mykki-blanco.html" target="_hplink">first hit the streets</a> of New York dressed as a woman, the <em>New York Times</em> reports. "I call it my golden-ticket day," Quattlebaum told the paper. "It was like Pandora's box opened." Check out the video above for her new single, "Wavvy," directed by Francesco Carrozzini, and then <a href="https://twitter.com/MykkiBlanco" target="_hplink">follow her on Twitter</a> to keep up with what other new music is headed our way later this year.
Gay Florida Bathhouse Offers Free Admission To Republican Convention Delegates
<a href="http://www.yborresortandspa.com/" target="_hplink">A gay Florida bathhouse</a> could reap the benefits of the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/21/republican-national-convention-hurricane_n_1817139.html" target="_hplink">Republican National Convention</a> next week by offering GOP delegates free admission. <a href="http://joemygod.blogspot.com/2012/08/tampa-bathhouse-offers-free-admittance.html" target="_hplink">As Joe. My. God blogger Joe Jervis reported</a>, Ybor Resort and Spa -- which describes itself as Tampa Bay's "largest, all-gay, private men's club, resort, and bathhouse" -- advertises the special RNC deal <a href="http://www.yborresortandspa.com/" target="_hplink">on its website</a>. "For those unaware, Ybor City is a homo-heavy entertainment district famed for its riotous nightclub scene, which is often described as Tampa's version of Bourbon Street," Jervis notes. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/24/ybor-resort-and-spa-gay-florida-bathhouse-rnc-offer_n_1827894.html?utm_hp_ref=gay-voices&ncid=edlinkusaolp00000009" target="_hplink">Read the full story here.</a>
San Francisco 49ers Join 'It Gets Better' Campaign
Anti-gay bullying advocates are praising the San Francisco 49ers, who became the first NFL team to join the "It Gets Better" campaign in support of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) youth. Appearing in the newly-released clip are linebacker Ahmad Brooks, defensive tackles Ricky Jean Francois and Isaac Sopoaga, as well as safety Donte Whitner. "The San Francisco 49ers are proud to join ItGetsBetter.org, to let all LGBT teens know that It Gets Better," Whitner says in the video. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/24/san-francisco-49ers-it-gets-better-campaign-_n_1828488.html" target="_hplink">Read the full story here</a>.
Vermont Inn Settles Gay Marriage Lawsuit With Lesbian Couple
Two New York women and a Vermont country inn have settled a lawsuit that accused the business of refusing to host the couple's wedding reception. The American Civil Liberties Union said Thursday the Wildflower Inn in Lyndonville agreed to pay a $10,000 civil penalty to the Vermont Human Rights Commission and to place $20,000 in a charitable trust. Under the settlement, the inn also agreed it would no longer host weddings and their receptions. The innkeepers' lawyer, Jim Campbell, said they had decided previously to end that part of their business. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/23/wildflower-inn-vermont-gay-marriage-lawsuit_n_1826218.html" target="_hplink">Read the full Associated Press story here</a>.
Rufus Wainwright & Jorn Weisbrodt Tie The Knot
Musician Rufus Wainwright has tied the knot. Publicist Bianca Bianconi confirmed Wainwright and Jorn Weisbrodt were married in a ceremony Thursday. People reports the 39-year-old musician and the artistic director of the Luminato Festival were married by close friend and artist Justin Vivian Bond in a ceremony in Montauk on Long Island. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/24/rufus-wainwright-jorn-weisbrodt-married_n_1828528.html" target="_hplink">Read the full Associated Press story here</a>.
New Poll Reveals 2012 Election Concerns Of LGBT Voters
Same-sex marriage may be dominating the headlines nationwide, but political candidates' stances on other LGBT-relevant issues are also significantly impacting voters' decisions as November gets closer. According to a new survey released today by Logo TV, 49 percent of the general population would also be more likely to vote for a candidate if he or she supported legislation to define and prevent bullying of LGBT youth, while 41 percent would favor a political official who would continue to allow LGBT people to serve openly in the U.S. military. Dr. Kenneth Sherrill of New York's Hunter College, who advised the Logo project, was among those to also praise the poll's findings, saying it documented a "political transformation of epic proportions." <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/23/lgbt-issues-voter-attitudes-logo-tv-survey_n_1823322.html" target="_hplink">Read the full story here</a>.
Jordan Addison, a student at Radford University in Radford, Va., is no stranger to dealing with homophobic vandalism. Over the course of just three months this year, reports WDBJ, Addison's car has been damaged four times. Vandals have keyed homophobic slurs into the side, painted impossible-to-remove hate speech on the panels, and caused other damage totaling around $2,500 -- an amount Addison couldn't afford to pay to have the car fixed. Luckily for Addison, he didn't have to, as a group of business owners in nearby Roanoke united to fix his car, spearheaded by Richard Henegar, Jr., the manager at Quality Auto Paint and Body. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/21/jordan-addison-bullied-car_n_1819863.html" target="_hplink">Read the full story here</a>.
Hugh Hefner Pens Editorial In Support Of Same-Sex Marriage, Gay Rights
Add Hugh Hefner to the list of celebrities and other high-profile figures speaking out in favor of same-sex marriage. The 86-year-old <em>Playboy </em>founder calls the struggle for marriage equality "a fight for all of our rights" in an editorial featured in the September issue of his magazine, according to Politico. "Today, in every instance of sexual rights falling under attack, you'll find legislation forced into place by people who practice discrimination disguised as religious freedom," Hefner writes. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/21/hugh-hefner-playboy-founder-gay-marriage_n_1819258.html" target="_hplink">Read the full story here</a>.
T-Mobile Backs Gay Marriage In Washington State
Add T-Mobile to the ever-growing list of companies speaking out in favor of same-sex marriage in Washington state. Bellevue Patch cites company officials who said that the cell phone network will contribute $25,000 to Washington United For Marriage (WUM), which is currently working to pass the state's Referendum 74, which would affirm the legislatively-backed law that legalizes same-sex marriage. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/20/t-mobile-gay-marriage-washington-state_n_1812967.html" target="_hplink">Click here to read more</a>.
Toyota Casts Transgender Model In Cheeky New Commerical
Car companies often use bikini-clad models to sell their product (see: this gross milk-and-donuts commercial that obvi got yanked from the air). But rarely do you see men in bikinis strutting their stuff for mega brands -- and Toyota is here to change that. The Japanese car company cast Stav Strashko, a stunning male model, for its latest commercial for the Auris (known stateside as a Corolla). The video clip, above, begins with classic commercial conventions: long-haired blonde model walks sultrily towards the car in a string bikini... until the end, when it becomes clear that Stav's got less cleavage than your average swimsuit model. Surprise! <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/22/stav-strashko-toyota-commercial_n_1822990.html" target="_hplink">Read the full story here</a>.
Earlier on HuffPost: