This week we brought readers Meagan Flynn's cover story on Debra Schmidt, a longtime Harris County Sheriff's Office deputy who has fought for LGBT rights — even when her superiors disagreed with her vision. Schmidt considered retiring after Sheriff Ron Hickman demoted her, but after voters sent Hickman packing, the new sheriff, Ed Gonzalez, unexpectedly promoted Schmidt to his command staff.
Schmidt's story got us thinking of other important LGBT stories we've done in the past few years. Here are some of the best.
The Struggles of Being Young, Homeless and LGBT
When Crimson Jordan's mother told him that, if he wanted to make a gender transition, he would have to get out her house, Jordan chose to leave for good.
Houston Gets Poor Marks on LGBT Equality Report Card
A national human rights group gave Houston a score of 48 out of 100 for LGBT equality, according to a recently released report.
Judge Says Prison Sentence Shouldn't Equal Constant Rape, Assault for LGBT Inmates
This week U.S. District Judge Alfred H. Bennett refused to dismiss a lawsuit against Texas Department of Criminal Justice Executive Director Brad Livingston filed by a transgender inmate who faced 12 years of near constant rape and assault in the Texas prison system. As Bennett wrote in his ruling, that's because Livingston hasn't yet demonstrated what exactly he's done to protect her and other vulnerable LGBT inmates from abuse.
When Seeking Basic Medical Care, Transgender People Face Discrimination in Houston
Shortly before she was set to start college, Rose tried to kill herself. When she decided to check herself into Houston Methodist Hospital on Fannin for psychiatric treatment, she says, the doctor in charge of her care didn’t want to let her leave. Not because she was a danger to herself or others, but because he wanted to hold her indefinitely until she gave up her belief she was a woman. According to her, only the fact that she was a voluntary committal and no longer a minor set her free back into the world.
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I’m More Worried About Anti-HERO Activists in Bathrooms Than Trans People
This is the scenario people opposed to the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance want me to believe is going to happen: My little girl, all pink eyeglasses, blond curls and a sass level over 9,000, will need to use a public restroom at the park or a restaurant. Once in there, she will be at the mercy of a transwoman, maybe even one with a penis, who will use the rights protected by HERO to…what? Pee within a certain amount of feet from her? Expose herself? Molest her? What diabolical she-penis monstrosity has the city unleashed on our powerless womenfolk?
Down in the Polls, DA Devon Anderson Oddly Notes Her Opponent Is Gay
Republican incumbent Harris County District Attorney Devon Anderson is facing criticism in both conservative and liberal circles after making comments invoking Democratic opponent Kim Ogg's sexual orientation and personal beliefs.