Gay dating app Jack’d endorses DeRay McKesson

Photo Credit: DeRay McKesson's Facebook (facebook.com/dmckesson)
Photo credit: DeRay McKesson’s Facebook (facebook.com/dmckesson)

Civil rights activist DeRay McKesson rose to national attention over the past year both for his work with the Black Lives Matter movement and for his decision to come out publicly as gay. Since then, McKesson has made even more headlines with his announcement last month of his candidacy for the 2016 Baltimore mayoral election. McKesson is already a famous candidate in the election, but now he’s gained some equally famous support as gay dating app Jack’d has publicly endorsed McKesson.

Jack’d, which describes itself as “the largest and fastest growing dating app for guys looking to meet guys,” made the announcement this week and pledged $6,000, the maximum allowed from a single campaign donor, to McKesson’s campaign. The dating app is also encouraging thousands of gay and bisexual men in the Baltimore area to register to vote and support McKesson in the election.


“DeRay Mckesson is a voice for this generation,” said Hector Camacho, CEO of Online Buddies, the parent company of Jack’d, during this week’s announcement. “His passion, activism and relentless commitment for justice have forced the nation to reflect and respond. We applaud DeRay’s courage and dedication in the demand for equal rights, not only in Baltimore, but throughout the nation.”

Phil Henricks, the VP of strategy and business development at Jack’d, also explained his take on why the app was endorsing McKesson.


“Over 30,000 LGBTQ students attend Maryland’s public schools,” Henricks said. “A vast majority of them face harassment by students and faculty on a daily basis. A third report that they skip school due to fear. We need a leader who will be committed to implementing anti-bullying policies.”

It didn’t take long for McKesson to publicly respond to the endorsement and he shared his gratitude to Jack’d for backing his campaign.

“The fight for justice is long. It is a fight to ensure equity within systems and structures that affect so many of us from communities that have traditionally been marginalized because of race and/or identity. As a proud Black gay man, I’m honored by the support of Jack’d to help mobilize the young, LGBTQ voters of Baltimore. Let’s use our platforms to continue to build community and honor the complexity of our identities,” McKesson said.

We’re surprised that Jack’d would throw their support behind a Black mayoral candidate, but we applaud them for the support and hope that it inspires others in the gay community to show their support for McKesson as well.

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