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This Happened

This Happened—January 20: The Obama Presidency Begins

Barack Obama is inaugurated as 44th President of the United States on this date in 2009, making him the first African-American president.

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What did Barack Obama do before becoming president?

After working as a writer and editor, Barack Obama became a community organizer in Chicago, lectured on constitutional law at the University of Chicago, and then served in the Illinois State Senate and U.S. Senate.

What did Barack Obama achieve during his presidency?

Obama’s main reforms include the Affordable Care Act, sometimes referred to as "Obamacare", the Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, and the repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell in 2010 for LGBTQ+ people working in the military.

What is Barack Obama doing now?

Since leaving office, Obama has remained active in politics, including campaigning for candidates in various American elections. He has also written a book called A Promised Land that was published in 2020.

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LGBTQ Plus

Mayan And Out! Living Proudly As An Indigenous Gay Man

Being gay and indigenous can mean facing double discrimination, including from within the communities they belong to. But LGBTQ+ indigenous people in Guatemala are liberating their sexuality and reclaiming their cultural heritage.

Photo of the March of Dignity in Guatemala

The March of Dignity in Guatemala

Teresa Son and Emma Gómez

CANTEL — Enrique Salanic and Arcadio Salanic are two K'iché Mayan gay men from this western Guatemalan city

Fire is a powerful symbol for them. Associated with the sons and daughters of Tohil, the god who bestows fire in Mayan culture, it becomes the mirror and the passage that allows them to see and express their sexuality. It is a portal that connects people with their grandmothers and grandfathers, the cosmos and the energies that the earth transmits.

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