Free At Last [cover feature]

Lena Fancher (L), Jan Zimmerman Addressing the needs of the LGBTQ community, Lotus Place Recovery’s Lena Fancher and Jan Zimmerman on living your authentic life. BY MARK ARIEL  |  PHOTO BY DUSTI CUNNINGHAM Lotus Place Recovery is a gender diverse conscious organization located in in Fountain Valley, near Newport Beach, whose goal is to help…

Finding Your People

Xavier Espejo, California Drummer 2017, on taking advantage of opportunities that come your way. BY KIAN KAMATAKI  |  PHOTO BY DUSTI CUNNINGHAM California Drummer 2017, Xavier Espejo, leaving this month for Chicago to participate in International Mr Leather 2018 contest (IML), talks to THE FIGHT about racial diversity, sex positivity and representing his title to…

California Prides

JUSSIE SMOLLETT, LONG BEACH PRIDE EVE, LA PRIDE A record number of Pride Festivals, taking place throughout the state over the next few months. Actor, singer and songwriter Jussie Smollett of Fox’s hit television series Empire, will showcase his musical talents at the 35th Annual Long Beach Pride Festival on Saturday, May 19 at the…

Community Ties

Former West Hollywood city council member, Los Angeles County Assessor, Jeffrey Prang is running for re-election. BY MARK ARIEL Los Angeles County Assessor Jeffrey Prang, former West Hollywood council member, currently running for re-election,  is no stranger to politics.  A gay man, originally from Warren, Michigan, Prang says that “public service has appealed to me…

Fronting Femininity

Ariana and The Rose’s Ariana DiLorenzo on musical influences, Studio 54 and female front women. BY ROXIE PERKINS Ariana DiLorenzo, the creator of Ariana and The Rose, the synth, art-pop band that headlined at The Dinah last month, says that she “decided early on that with my music I want to make spaces for the…

Hidden Truths

PHOTOS BY ANDREW LEIGH GREEN Andrew Leigh Green, an award winning photographic artist based in Launceston, Tasmania, was the odd, creative kid who didn’t fit in, the one who just wasn’t normal and should be ostracized in the eyes of the conservative community. As a proud gay photographic artist Green makes full use of his…

Pride & Prejudice

Olympic Diver Robert Páez: “It was up to me whether I lived in happiness, or sank and lived in a lie that never would be.” Robert Páez, 23, a professional diver from Venezuela, who represented his country in the 2012 and 2016 Summer Olympics, came out publicly last month in a moving op-ed at outsports.com. “I’ve been…

The Sex Police

(Photo: Danny Cruz) New laws, on local, state and federal levels, are driving more sex workers into the streets, putting their lives at risk. BY LARRY BUHL On April 17, a new California bill meant to expand the definition of “pandering,” which means solicitation and recruitment for prostitution, was tabled in the Senate Public Safety…

And The Winner Is

Mr. LA Leather Bear 2018 Ben Kaufher is the new Mr. Los Angeles Leather 2018.  BY MARK ARIEL Ben Kaufher of Bears LA won the coveted title of Mr. Los Angeles Leather 2018 last month at the Mr. Los Angeles Leather 2018 Contest which took place at The Globe Theater. The runner ups were Spike,…

Sex In The Age Of Trump

Sales of sex toys are up. “People are looking for ways to relieve stress.” BY ORLY LYONNE According to Mr. Hankey of mrhankeystoys.com, the recent political upheaval may have been bad for the country but good for sales in the sex industry. “Our sales are up 200% over last year—however I’m not really sure that…

Stronger Together

Mr. Bear LA 2018 Art Berkowitz: “I would like to see the LGBTQ community become more inclusive.” BY VICTOR MELAMED  |  PHOTO BY ROBERT GREEN Art Berkowitz recently won the title of Mr. Bear LA 2018. (His bear brother, Mr. LA Leather Bear 2018 Ben Kaufher became  the new Mr. Los Angeles Leather 2018 last month). Winning…

Tales Of The City

WeHo Reads celebrates National Poetry Month and One City One Pride. BY ORLY LYONNE The City of West Hollywood’s WeHo Arts program presents WeHo Reads, a literary series at the West Hollywood Library. Past authors who have been part of the WeHo Reads series include André Aciman (Call Me By Your Name), Armistead Maupin, Cecil…

Transforming Our Culture

Folsom Street Events announces partnership with legendary artist Clive Barker. BY KIAN KAMATAKI Folsom Street Events announced last month that the 2018 Folsom Street Fair and Magnitude posters will feature original images by writer, film director, painter, and photographer, Clive Barker. The images have been selected from the never before seen photographic series titled Imagining…

Yes Mistress

An interview with queer dominatrix and dungeon owner Mistress Justine Cross. BY ROXIE PERKINS Mistress Justine Cross is a queer professional and lifestyle dominatrix who also owns, runs, and operates Dungeon East and Dungeon West. As a BDSM educator Cross hosts speaking events and educational performances at college campuses including at UCLA’s “BDSM 101” workshop…

Stirring Dragons

One trans man’s journey in recovery. “All heroes go through turmoil or hell in order to emerge changed on the other side.” BY SIFU MATHEW CARVER  |  ILLUSTRATION BY ZOHAR LAZAR We are all heroes, though dormant some times. Waiting, many of us, for something or someone to rouse us from our slumber, to give…