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Meet Fran Watson: Queer Black Houston Lawyer and Activist Seeks Texas Senate Seat

A photo of Texas Senate District 17 candidate Fran Watson.

As an assistant professor of Women’s, Gender & Sexuality Studies and Comparative Cultural Studies at University of Houston, I’m particularly thrilled to see candidates who make the Texas political landscape reflective of the diversity of Houston. I’ve had the privilege of getting to know Fran Watson through the city’s LGBTQ activist networks, and have seen her consistently show up to serve and engage with many different Texas communities. Fran and I traveled to Austin together this spring—as part of a…

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Speaking Out: Intersex Texan Promotes Protective Policy

A photo of intersex advocates Koomah and Mo Cortez.

When Mo Cortez was five years old, he woke up in a hospital bed, peeled back the sheets, and discovered a large red “X” on his groin. Cortez was born intersex—with ambiguous genitalia—and surgery was an attempt to “normalize” him. Instead, it made it him feel dehumanized, he says, “like a Frankenstein.” But despite his many challenges since then, Cortez says he has found truth in his identity, and has used his own experiences as motivation to tirelessly advocate for…

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