From dildos on the Mediterranean to Trump’s latest missteps, 2017 brought us plenty of memorable moments, both good and bad.
Below, we’ve compiled our most-read stories of the year. Hey, don’t blame us!
A nature photographer witnessed two males copulating in a game preserve—a rare sighting of animal homosexuality in the wild.
Ezekeil Mutua, head of the Kenyan Film Classification Board, insisted the lions were copying behavior they had seen from queer tourists.
Crystal Griner received a hero’s welcome after she helped foil a shooter who opened fire on group of Republican congressmen in June: But when the out officer was awarded a U.S. Medal of Honor the following month, Donald Trump tried to force a kiss on her.
“Griner’s discomfort is palpable, and she even appears to try and pull away from the president at one point,” wrote Bipartisan Report.
Twitter Channel 4/The Island
Lifeguards in Camaldoli, Italy, were forced to ban children from swimming when dozens of sex toys appeared on the shore.
China Photos/Getty Images
In September, for the first time ever, the CDC confirmed that HIV-positive people with undetectable viral loads can’t transmit the virus, something activists and scientists have been saying for years.
The Former Drag Race contestant came out as a trans woman in March. “Thank you to everyone who has supported me on this journey,” Gunn wrote on Instagram.
Elishaly D’witshes stunned onlookers when she jumped off of a double-decker bus into a perfect split at Miami’s Palace Bar, which has since shuttered its doors.
Amber Cantorna, the daughter of a top-ranking member of the anti-gay activist group Focus On The Family, came out as a lesbian in her memoir, Refocusing My Family: Coming Out, Being Cast Out, and Discovering the True Love of God.
“I got to the point where I felt like, no matter the cost, I had to be authentic with myself,” she wrote.
Ru rarely discusses his personal life publicly but, in a March interview with Hollywood Today Live, he revealed he had made it official with Georges LeBar, his partner of more than 20 years.
Russian singer Zelimkhan Bakaev disappeared earlier this year, abandoning contact with friends and family after arriving in Grozny. Activists on the ground believe he was picked up by authorities and was tortured to death, one of several fatalities stemming from the country’s homophobic witch hunt.
On Christmas Eve 2016, Tatiana Lozano Pereira of Sao Paulo, Brazil, hired two men to murder her 17-year-old son, Itaberli, because he was gay.
In January, she confessed to the crime and named the assailants—including Itaberli’s stepfather, who helped dispose of the body.
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
In March, Trump gutted Obama-era protections for LGBT federal contractors by nullifying an executive order that required companies to demonstrate compliance with legal protections.
“It’s sending a message to these companies that the federal government simply doesn’t care whether or not they violate the law,” said Lambda Legal’s Camilla Taylor.
In July, Jenner finally came to the realization that Trump wasn’t an ally: “There are 15,000 patriotic transgender Americans in the US military fighting for all of us,” she tweeted. “What happened to your promise to fight for them?”
Twitter was not kind to her late-in-the-game epiphany.
After Twitter refused to delete more than 300 racist and homophobic tweets, German-Israeli activist Shahak Shapira spray-painted some of the abusive messages outside the company’s offices in Hamburg.
Ron T. Ennis/Fort Worth Star-Telegram/MCT via Getty Images
Even Republican House Speaker Joe Straus opposed the bathroom bill forced on the Texas legislature by Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick. Straus blocked the “Texas Privacy Act,” in the house, saying he was “disgusted” by the bill.
“Tell the lieutenant governor I don’t want the suicide of a single Texan on my hands.”
— Yes, You're Economically Anxious (@YesYoureRacist) August 13, 2017
Twitter user @YesYoureRacist lead the charge to name and shame white supremacists who attended August’s “Unite the Right” march in Charlottesville.
Cole White, the first attendee exposed, was fired from his job at a hot dog restaurant in Berkeley, California.
After photos of Flynn and Heizer being cozy surfaced on social media, rumors circulated that the 13 Reasons Why co-stars were dating IRL. The theory was debunked by Heizer’s rep, but Flynn has since come out and is now dating Grammy winner Sam Smith.
At a U.N. gathering in October, 13 countries voted against a call to ban capital punishment for a variety of offenses—including homosexuality. While most who voted nay were from African and Arab countries, they were joined by U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley.
Regardless of America’s surprising vote, the resolution still passed.