A celebration of queer youth!

Republicans unleashed fury after a drag king was in the People's House.

A celebration of queer youth!
In this week's newsletter: A tense few days at the Capitol after someone read a book in the House basement; Politics' real-time effect on LGBTQ+ youth; Queer "insurrectionists" in the Capitol?; A brand new Out of the Closet to win free swag, and last month's winner!


Every week, we highlight the lives of our readers by showing off what queer joy looks like to them. Show off your life by replying back to this email with a photo, or tagging us on Instagram @lookoutphx.

Melanie Willingham-Jaggers, the national executive director for GLSEN, an LGBTQ+ educators' rights group, came to Arizona to celebrate the state's inaugural LGBTQ+ Youth Day at the Capitol on Wednesday. (Photo courtesy of Lizette Trujillo)

YOUTH DAY: Months ago, a cohort of LGBTQ+ advocacy groups in Arizona had an idea: to show queer youth across Arizona that their government is made for them.

Rep. Lorena Austin (D.-Mesa) came up with the idea after students at multiple schools had asked Austin to speak at their Gay-Straight Alliances.

"I think they finally saw someone like them," Austin said yesterday at the Capitol Rose Garden during a press junket to announce the state's first LGBTQ+ Youth Day at the Capitol.

Students from across Arizona's school districts including Tucson, Phoenix, Chandler, and Mesa gathered to simply be seen by members of the legislature, especially Republicans who have attempted to limit the rights of trans and nonbinary students in schools.

"Democrats support you," Austin said from the House floor.

But the event was tinged with slight anxiety. The day before, a Capitol insider told LOOKOUT that House Speaker Ben Toma pulled Austin into his office and "yelled at" them for hosting a private event in a meeting room for Drag Story Hour-Arizona. The event only had adults present, and the drag performer Freddy Prinze was dressed in a full glitter and sequined suit.

Toma's outburst on Austin came only after the speaker was called out on X by his congressional challenger, Sen. Anthony Kern (R.-Glendale). The two are running for a devoutly Republican district in the West Valley.

In an announcement on X, Toma said that Democrats would be barred from reserving spaces in the House "until trust is restored." He called drag "perverse," and said Austin misled him.

One House staffer told LOOKOUT that Toma was lying and "saving face." They said that all House members and staff were well aware of the event weeks before it was scheduled. LOOKOUT reached out to Toma's office to ask how he was misled when his office approved the event.

We have not received a response.

WHAT WE’RE KEEPING AN EYE ON: This kind of grandstanding isn't new in politics. And queer communities are often cast as main characters in Arizona's political theatre.

But what makes this newsworthy, at least to us, is how state Rep. Rachel Jones (R.-Tucson) invited an anti-trans leader from the group Gays Against Groomers to sit among the students at yesterday's event.

The Arizona chapter of Gays Against Groomers is run by Robert Wallace, who is seeking a seat on the Fountain Hills City Council. Wallace was also the secretary of the Log Cabin Republics in Phoenix, the organization's largest chapter.

On his campaign website, Wallace says that he is protecting students from the "woke Marxist agenda" inside of schools.

We'd like to do a bit of digging into Wallace. As an openly gay man who is running for office and also running on an anti-trans platform, we feel it's our job to do some backgrounding. If you have any information on Wallace, feel free to reach out by responding back to this email.

We do reporting that changes lives.
The kind of impactful work for and within the community can't be found anywhere else. And we don't charge you a penny for it. At LOOKOUT, we are independently funded exclusively by readers like yourself. If you enjoy the work we do, click here to become a monthly or annual donor.

  • ENDORSEMENT: The anti-drag-but-former-friend-of-a-drag-queen Senate Candidate Kari Lake has received an endorsement from Sonny Borelli, who said birth control should be an aspirin "between your knees." The Phoenix New Times
  • QUEER INSURRECTION: Two members of the House LGBTQ+ Legislative Caucus are being accused of "insurrection" after shouting down fellow Rep. Matt Gress (R.-Paradise Valley) for his vote against debating a repeal on the abortion ban. AZ Mirror

  • METHODIST CHANGE: The United Methodist Church repealed a longstanding ban that disallowed LGBTQ+ clergy. The Associated Press
  • ONE IN TEN: More than one in ten LGBTQ+ youth constemplated suicide last year. They cited the state of politics as a significant factor. The Hill
  • KERN, THE HATER: Sen. Anthony Kern, who has introduced and passed multiple anti-LGBTQ+ bills, went on. awhite supremacist's talk show to go on a homophobic screed. Angry White Men


Have a community event coming up you want LOOKOUT to highlight? Email us.

  • Fri. May 3 - Eat and drink up with the Greater Phoenix Equality Chamber of Commerce's at their monthly luncheon at YUMBar. Info
  • Sat. May 4- Like Dungeons and Dragons? Play a bit with TSAZ at their D&D Fundraiser. Info
  • Sat. May 4- GLSEN Arizona has a reading event at the Flagstaff Library. Info
  • Tues. May 7 - One n Ten hosts a meetup in Flagstaff for queer youth aged 18-24. Info
  • Wed. May 15 - Thems is hosting a writing workshop. Info
  • Sat. May 18 - Get all dressed up for the Sparkle Glitter GLSEN prom. Info


Without the LGBTQ+ community, there’s less meaning. Guess the word below with only the support of the letters L, G, B, T, Q, I, A and submit your answer to be entered into our monthly drawing for exclusive LOOKOUT swag. The more times you play, the more chances you get to win! The next drawing will be April 30.

_ _ _ _T_A

Hint: The spanish translation for "Our House," this private club was a lesbian hangout in Tucson that closed in 1982.

Last Week's Answer: BICYCLE

Sheila K. (Phoenix)
Victoria C. (Phoenix)

Great! You’ve successfully signed up.

Welcome back! You've successfully signed in.

You've successfully subscribed to LOOKOUT .

Success! Check your email for magic link to sign-in.

Success! Your billing info has been updated.

Your billing was not updated.

LOOKOUT Publications is a federally recognized nonprofit news outlet. EIN Number:92-3129757