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From Hollywood to Capitol Hill, here are 12 pioneering queer Latinos

From Afro-Latino gay lawmaker Ritchie Torres to transgender “Pose” star Mj Rodriguez, gay Latinos are making both history and waves in a number of areas. To celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month, here are just 12 pioneers you should know from LGBTQ and Latino communities.

Ricky martin

The Puerto Rican pop star shared her truth in a 2010 blog post on her official website. “I’m proud to say I’m a lucky gay man,” he wrote. “I am very fortunate to be who I am.”

Ricky Martin performs at the iHeartRadio Theater in Los Angeles, in Burbank, California on February 10, 2015.Mike Windle / Getty Images for iHeartMedia file

In a July 2020 interview on Apple Music’s Proud Radio, Martin said he struggled to choose whether to become gay or bisexual. “And then I said, ‘Rick, you’re a very lucky gay man. You are gay. ‘ And I wrote it down and hit send and then I cried like crazy. And since then, I’ve been super happy, ”he said.

Martin, 49, is married to artist Jwan Yosef and has four children.

Demi Lovato

The 29-year-old singer and former Disney star, whose father is of Mexican descent, came out earlier this year as a non-binary and announced that their pronouns are them / them.

Demi Lovato speaks on stage during the Teen Vogue Summit 2019 at Goya Studios in Los Angeles on November 2, 2019.Rich Fury / Getty Images for the Teen Vogue dossier

“Over the past year and a half, I’ve been doing healing and self-reflection work,” Lovato said in the first episode of their podcast, 4D With Demi Lovato, in May. “And through this work, I had the revelation that I identify as non-binary.”

India Moore

The transgender actor and activist was a star of the hit FX series “Pose”. Moore, who is of Haitian, Puerto Rican and Dominican descent, told NBC News last year that they are using their advocacy work to highlight pervasive injustices and inequalities in black and brown trans and queer communities.

Indya Moore attends the 2021 Met Gala Celebrating In America: A Lexicon Of Fashion at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City on September 13, 2021.Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty Images for The Met Museum / Vogue

“I’m really happy that people like me for my work, but it’s also important for people to connect with the fact that they love an artist who is also a black trans person who is part of a community that is targeted with violence every day, ”they said.

Manuel ‘Manny Mua’ Gutierrez

Latino beauty influencer, known by his YouTube name Manny Mua, was ranked the most beloved beauty guru in a recent insider poll. With more than 4.8 million subscribers, the Mexican-American YouTuber “is constantly blurring the lines of gender in cosmetics,” according to his website.

Manuel Gutierrez, known professionally as Manny MUA, arrives for the world premiere of Disney’s “The Lion King” at the Dolby Theater in Hollywood on July 9, 2019.Robyn Beck / AFP via Getty Images file

Jennicet Gutiérrez

An undocumented transgender woman, Gutiérrez made headlines around the world when she interrupted President Barack Obama at a White House reception in June 2015 in honor of LGBTQ Pride Month and shouted: “Free all LGBTQ immigrants from detention.”

“As President Obama spoke about the progress of LGBT people, I couldn’t help but think of my transgender sisters in detention (immigration) who were in pain. I suddenly felt so tired of the violence and transphobia we face, ”the activist told NBC Latino shortly after the incident. “I also felt this sense of urgency. It was the opportunity of a lifetime and I didn’t want to wait. I had to speak for others.

Gutiérrez is currently a community organizer for Familia: Trans Queer Liberation Movement.

Emilie Estéfan

Singer Emily Estefan, daughter of Grammy-winning music icon Gloria Estefan, spoke candidly last year about her difficult experience with her Cuban-American mother during their Facebook Watch series “Red Table Talk: The Estefans. “.

Emily Estefan speaks on stage during NATPE Miami 2020 at the Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami Beach, Florida on January 22, 2020.Jason Koerner File / Getty Images

“I was like, ‘Hey, I’m in love with this girl.’ The first thing you said was, ‘If you tell your grandmother and she dies her blood is on your hands,’ said Emily Estefan, who has been dating her girlfriend Gemeny Hernandez since. several years.

Later in the segment, when actress and lesbian Rosie O’Donnell joined in the conversation, Gloria Estefan explained that she and her daughter had “been in therapy and tried to get out of it.”

“In my mind, if Emily told my mom and something happened to my mom, then she would still think with guilt that she could have caused this situation,” she said. “I know I said the wrong thing, but that’s where I was coming from.”

Guillermo Diaz

The openly gay actor, best known for his roles on Showtime’s “Weeds” and ABC’s “Scandal,” was born to Cuban parents in New Jersey and raised in New York’s Washington Heights neighborhood.

Guillermo Diaz.Brian Bowen Smith / ABC via Getty Images File

He shared his thoughts on the impact of the Stonewall Riots on him in 2019 with The Daily Beast.

“Honestly, I don’t remember the first time I heard about the Stonewall riots. I think it was probably when I was in college. But I remember learning so much more about them when I was making the movie Stonewall (1995), ”he said, referring to a movie in which he played a drag queen. “It gave me a sense of community and a wonderful sense of pride and respect for everyone who was there and who sacrificed so much for the LGBTQ community. I just remember feeling REALLY proud to be gay.

Díaz is set to be a part of Billy Eichner’s next “Bros” project, which The Hollywood Reporter says will go down in history with an all-LGBTQ main cast.

Michaela Jaé ‘Mj’ Rodriguez

The “Pose” star made history this summer after becoming the first transgender performer to be nominated for a Principal Emmy for her role as mother and nurse Blanca Rodriguez on the FX show. Rodriguez, whose father is half Puerto Rican, didn’t end up winning, but his nomination was notable nonetheless.

Mj Rodriguez attends the 2019 MTV Movie and TV Awards at Barker Hangar in Santa Monica, California on June 15, 2019.Emma McIntyre / Getty Images for MTV file

“No matter what ‘industry voters’ say, Mj Rodriguez is a winner in our eyes and does an amazing job amplifying trans voices on television and in the media. Well done!” tweeted Gay comedian and writer Sampson McCormick.

Representative Ritchie Torres

Representative Ritchie Torres became the first Afro-Latino gay member of Congress when he won his seat in New York’s 15th Congressional District, the poorest district in the country. Not new in history, the Democrat also became the youngest member of New York City Council in 2013 at just 25.

Rep. Ritchie Torres, DN.Y., stands on the steps of the Capitol, May 20, 2021.Tom Williams / CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images File

“It was surreal for me to go to my office for the first time,” Torres told NBC Latino earlier this year after being elected to Congress. “I never thought I would embark on a journey from public housing in the Bronx to the House of Representatives in Washington, DC”

Tessa thompson

The bisexual Afro-Latina actress is best known for her roles in “Men in Black: International” and “Creed”. She also plays queer superhero Valkyrie in the upcoming “Thor: Love and Thunder”, making her character Marvel Studios’ first LGBTQ superhero.

Tessa Thompson attends the 2021 Met Gala celebrating “In America: A Lexicon of Fashion” at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City on September 13, 2021.Noam Galai / GC Images

Rosario Dawson

The “Rent” actress, who is Puerto Rican and Cuban, shared in an interview with Bustle last year that people mistakenly thought she was out in an Instagram Pride 2018 post.

Actress Rosario Dawson appears on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, February 13, 2020.Andrew Lipovsky / NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images File

“People kept saying that I [came out] … I didn’t do that, ”she said. “I mean, it’s not inaccurate, but I never did go out go out. I mean, I guess I am now.

Aubrey Square

The “Parks and Recreation” alum, who starred in queer vacation romantic comedy “Happiest Season,” spoke to Advocate magazine in 2016 about her bisexuality.

Actress Aubrey Plaza attends the 2020 Sundance Film Festival – “Black Bear” premiere at the Library Center Theater in Park City, Utah on January 24, 2020.Ilya S. Savenok File / Getty Images

“Girls love me, it’s no secret. Hey, I love them too. I fall in love with girls and guys. I can’t help it, ”the half-Puerto Rican actress said.

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