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Archive for April, 2011

Queer Corner Quickie #14: NBC, Donald Trump, Michael Bloomberg, Atlanta Braves, Cary Grant

A quick roundup of this week’s gay happenings…

Video of the Week: Following Apple’s tear-jerking It Gets Better video, the employees at NBC recently released their own addition to the It Gets Better Project.

White House to host first ever transgender meeting.

Malaysia officials rounded up 66 teenage male students who were deemed effeminate and sent them to a government sponsored camp because it was feared they “could end up gay or transsexual”. A petition is circulating around the world to have the “Sissy Boot Camps” shut down.

Because of the hateful anti-gay views Donald Trump has spewing since he announced he’s “running” for President, GLAAD has issued a call-to-action asking the LGBT community and its allies to boycott all Trump-owned entities.

Pulitzer Prize winner Cynthia Tucker penned this amazing column, Eddie Long: homophobe, narcissist, con artist, about mega-church Pastor Eddie Long. He’s the extremely anti-gay and married pastor who made headlines recently for allegedly having affairs with multiple male members of his congregation.

French-based HIV/AIDS awareness organization AIDES has released another campy video about safe sex. This time featuring Willy the Tourist.

A federal judge ordered NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg to restore funding to HIV/AIDS Services Administration. He was going to cut 254 employees from the organization, but it was found that such a large cut would be unconstitutional. So, the administration filed suite and they won!

Houston’s Fox affiliate Fox 26 recently featured a discussion that included American Family Association right-wing, nut-job Bryan Fischer discussing Glee and how it’s making TV too gay. The reporter even ridiculously states that the show is using homosexuality as product placement. Really!?

The Cosmopolitan Hotel in Las Vegas forcibly barred a transgender women from the hotel for life after she used their ladies restroom this week. But shortly after the story went viral and was then printed in Las Vegas Weekly, the hotel issued an apology and said the transgender guest was welcome back anytime. She says the apology is insincere and she won’t be returning.

I’ve mentioned Tennessee’s new “Don’t Say Gay Bill” before. It would effectively ban teachers in elementary schools from talking about homosexuality. Here the bill’s sponsor Senator Stacey Campfield (R-TN) talks idiotically about the bill’s merits. And here Washington Post columnist Alexandra Petri writes about how idiotic the bills is.

Tennessee is on an anti-gay roll. A bill that would ban cities in the state from passing anti-discrimination bills that include sexuality has been passed in the house. If signed into law it would resend a recent Nashville ordinance that was passed that added sexuality to the city’s anti-discrimination laws.

Loved this video about discrimination within the gay community. It’s an issue that we never talk about, but so needs to be addressed.

Gay Bashing Report: Vigil honors gay hate crime victim in Austin | Utah man assaulted outside Salt Lake City gay club | Thug beats up gay man in London over his shorts | Canadian lesbian awarded $22,000 over anti-gay tirade by comic | Convicted Kentucky gay basher faces delay in sentencing, hate crime determination | Thugs targeting men coming from gay bars in NYC’s West Village, police say

Openly gay former NBA star John Amaechi recently spoke in depth with David Pakman on the radio show Midweek Politics about the Kobe Bryant controversy, gay NBA players and more.

Speaking of meat-head athletes, an Atlanta Braves coach has come under fire for yelling anti-gay slurs and making inappropriate sexually suggestive gestures at a group of fans during a game last week in San Francisco. He’s apologized, but is still under investigation.

A male student at Riverview High School in Florida was kicked out of class for wearing high heels.

Killer Queen: The Story of Paco the Pink Pounder is a new play being staged in NYC about the the trials faced by an out gay boxer.

In a new memoir, Cary Grant’s daughter Jennifer says he was not gay, despite the barrage of evidence by Hollywood historians that he was.

Elton John and his modern family were recently featured in an in-depth segment on 20/20. Here’s Part 1 and here’s Part 2.

Here’s an interesting interview with out MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow. She talks about why she’s out and why she thinks a certain famous news anchor should also come out.

Famous gay filmmaker Malcolm Ingram (Small Town Gay Bar, Bear Nation) is making a new documentary called Continental, about the famous bath house in New York city during the ’60s that saw such guests and performers like Bette Midler, Barry Manilow and Patti Labelle. But he needs your help. He’s raising money for the project on Kickstarter and must raise $20,000 by May 11.

Photo of the Week: Model Bak Jea Min at a recent Guess underwear fashion show.

Ohio Queers: Anti-gay arsonist attack near Zanesville kills 8 horses

In Morgan County a gay man’s barn was set on fire and the words “fags are freaks” and “burn in hell” were painted in white spray paint along the outside of the barn. The arson attack killed 8 of the Ohio man’s horses.

According to WHIZ News, Brent Whitehouse awoke just after 11:30 p.m. Sunday to find his barn engulfed in flames. He immediately called 911, but it was too late. By the time the fire was subdued his horses had been killed and the entire barn destroyed. Whitehouse is an openly gay resident of McConnelsville, a small town near Zanesville, where he works as a horse trainer and breeder, and owns an insurance company.

Here’s an excerpt from The Zanesville Times Record report:

Shane Cartmill, spokesman for the fire marshal’s office, said when firefighters arrived on the scene, they quickly decided it was a crime scene due to derogatory sayings that had been painted on the barn and barn doors prior to the fire.

“They were hateful,” Whitehouse said of the sayings. “I think the investigators are looking at this like a hate crime.”

Whitehouse, a horse trainer and breeder, and owner of an insurance company in McConnelsville, said he is still in shock over losing Elvis, Barney, Floyd, Princess and her week-old foal, Buddy, Love, Bella and Ethel. The value of the horses was hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Click here for the WHIZ News video report.

Glee-cap: ‘Born This Way’

The studio execs at Fox might want to consider giving the Glee creators 30 extra minutes to play around with every week, because the 90-minute episode this week was quintessential Glee at its best. Great songs. Great story. It just worked.

This week the kids are just a few weeks from the national competition in New York and are preparing by practicing their dance moves when clumsy Finn knocks Rachel in the face and breaks her nose. While in the emergency room the doctor recommends she use this opportunity to get rid of her Jewish schnoz with plastic surgery. This leads the entire Glee clan on journey through self acceptance.

Mr. Shu assigns the kids to sing songs about acceptance in order to help force some self esteem on his students. Quinn and Rachel duet on a “Unpretty”/”I Feel Pretty” mash-up (more on this amazingness later). And Finn stumbles through a full dance number with Mike Chang as he sings Sammy Davis Jr.’s “I’ve Gotta Be Me” (the best Cory Monteith’s sounded yet, by the way) to showcase his accepting the fact that he can’t dance.

While Rachel is deciding if she wants to go under the knife for beauty, guidance counselor Emma fights Mr. Shu over accepting she has OCD. In order to keep her lesbianism from becoming common knowledge, Santana pairs with fellow closet case Dave Karofsky to bring Kurt back to McKinley to curry favor so they’ll win prom king and queen. Speaking of prom, Lauren pairs with Puck in a campaign to derail Quinn and make Lauren prom queen. Their plan also goes off the rails when Lauren posts photos of Quinn in middle school when she’s twice as big with freckles and a pony tail, but the photos somehow help Quinn’s bid for queen rather than make her chances worse.

In the end Kurt returns (to a beautiful goodbye from the Warblers who sang “Somewhere Only We Know” in McKinley’s quad) and  cements the occasion with his brilliant falsetto on “As If We Never Said Goodbye” for Mr. Shu’s acceptance assignment. Emma goes to a shrink and starts on medication, signaling her long road to recovery. Rachel decides to not get the nose job, a decision pushed by a amazing Barbara centric flash dance scene at the mall led by Kurt and Puck. And we close with the highly anticipated Lady Gaga “Born This Way” remake, the kids sporting shirts that boldly showcase their “difference.” My faves? Kurt: “Likes Boys” Mercedes: “No Weave” Brittany: “I’m With Stoopid” (with an arrow pointing at her head) Puck: “I’m With Stupid” (with an arrow pointing to his crotch). Oh, and and by the way, their remake of “Born This Way” was AMAZING!

And that’s what you missed on…GLEE!

Fave moment: I love it when Kurt’s dad gets all upset for his gay son. Makes me wish I had a dad when I was I young with that much conviction for making my life better. And this beard situation with Santana and Karofsky is interesting. I’m leaning towards liking it, but I’m not sure what to think yet, so we’ll see where it goes. But my all time fave moment from this episode is  Kurt’s return to McKinley. It’s about damn time!

Annoying moment: So, what happens if Santana and Karofsky win prom king and queen? (Hypothetically speaking of course. We already know who the prom king and queen are because of a big mouth extra.) Does that mean Karofsky gets to got back to beating up on Kurt again? And PFLAG’s aren’t started at schools, Gay Straight Alliances are, but I’m liking the effort on Kurt’s part. Also I’m liking this whole bully patrol thing, but it rings false since it’s under the guise of this Santana scam. I wish they wouldn’t have gone that route with the storyline.

Fave quote: Ms. Santana’s  witty beauties dominated this episode. Here are my three faves…

“The only straight I am is straight up bitch.”

“You’re what we call a late-in-life gay. You’re going to stay in the closet, get married, get drunk to have relations with your wife, have a couple kids, maybe become a state senator or a deacon and then get caught in the men’s room tapping your foot with some page.”

“Have you ever heard of the term beards? It’s when a gay man and woman date each other to hide the fact that they’re gay. Like the Roosevelts.”

Fave song: There was so many great musical moments in this episode. I definitely loved the “Born This Way” remake, especially how much it featured Kurt. The “Unpretty”/”I Feel Pretty” mash-up was phenomenal. And Chris Colfer’s “As If We Never Said Goodbye” (from the iconic Andrew Lloyd Webber musical “Sunset Boulevard”) gave me goosebumps.

You can watch full episodes of Glee here.

RuPaul Recap: Grand Finale

The Final 3! Raja, Alexis and Manila

The Season 3 finale of RDR was extremely predictable and didn’t include a single moment of surprise, but it was really touching to see these three drag queen Amazons finishing out the RDR journey together.

The episode was filled with stock RDR moments. From the final three queens geeking out over being in a Rpaul music video (that she just happened to be working on as the final was approaching) to the forced emotions that come with Ru’s annual one-on-one tic tak luncheon with each queen to the trim three panel judges deliberation featuring Ru’s stock “this decision is so hard” moment when we already know who’s she’s going to pick.

For the finale the queens had to channel their inner goddess for Ru’s new music video for her single “Champion.” The queens were shown folding under the pressure as a weird looking choreographer and hot head director yelled at them every chance they got for every little mistake the girls made. Then they took to the runway for the grand finale, where Ru had to girl stand on the stage alone name a pro and con about themselves each of their competitors. After sufficient shade was thrown Ru finally brought back the girls to crown the winner.

Alexis was sent packing first taking third place. Manila and Raja then took the stage for the final lip sync after which Ru finally crowned Raja the winner, with Manila taking second runner up. (Which gave us the best quote of the night. “I’m first runner up so maybe if Raja dies of old age I’ll get the crown.”) But seriously, was anyone NOT expecting this???

Next week is the drama-licious reunion episode! Can’t wait!

Congrats Raja!

Favorite Moment: The girls’ emotional interactions throughout the episode were cute. It was great to see Raja finally giving Alexis the credit she deserved. Although I wasn’t a fan of Alexis going in on Manila for being annoying. She wasn’t nearly as annoying as Mimi Imfurst or Shangela (just saying).

Runway Pick: I actually thought Alexis looked the best she’d ever looked, but it didn’t matter what she did this week. Girl wasn’t going to win.

The Next Drag Super Star: Just for the record, I so called it!

Untucked: I loved when the girls went through their memories of the girls who’d left before them. It was so ridiculously staged, but it did produce some pretty hilarious shade and was a nice reminder of who all the girls were from the season for the reunion episode next week.

Missed the episode? You can catch full episodes of RuPaul’s Drag Race and Untucked online at Logotv.com.

BONUS: Here a video from a recent surprise visit the finalist took to the NYC LGBT Youth Center. It’s too adorable for words.

Know Thine Enemy: Ted Nugent

Musician and conservative nut job Ted Nugent recently went on a rant against gays in the Washington Times in response to the outcry against Kobe Bryant for calling a referee a “f**king faggot” during a recent NBA game.

Here’s a snippet from the column:

If the NBA had any true gay convictions, the NBA should host a Homosexual Night. During halftime, the homosexuals could come down on the court, hold hands and prance around the court to music by the Village People. The NBA could then give each homosexual a pink basketball as a symbol of solidarity.

I can’t post more or I may start spouting obscenities. Ever since Nugent became culturally irrelevant as soon (as the ’80s ended) Mr. Nugent has been spewing this type of conservative hate language against gays or anything not in line with the Tea Party and the Religious Right.

Here he is spouting his nonsense on Fox News just before the 2008 presidential election in order to promote his equally insane book, Ted, White, and Blue: The Nugent Manifesto.

Queer Film Spotlight: ‘Violet Tendencies’

Violet Tendencies is a gay romantic comedy by director Casper Andreas and writer Jesse Archer starring Mindy Cohn (Natalie from “The Facts of Life”). The film has been making its rounds on the gay film festivals circuit since last spring and was even given a limited release in theaters at the end of 2010. The reviews have also been somewhat favorable.

Here’s a synopsis from the movie’s Web site:

Violet Tendencies tells the tale of Manhattan’s most fabulous fruit fly! At nearly 40, Violet (Mindy Cohn) is the racy, fun-loving belle of the ball. She spends her nights as royalty, but when the party ends she always heads home alone. While her co-worker Riley (Sam Whitten) struggles with his baby-crazy boyfriend Markus (Casper Andreas), and her roommate Luke (Jesse Archer) tackles monoga-mania, Violets romantic life is one big bellyflop. Realizing shes at a certain age and still single, Violet is at a crossroads. In the fast-paced world of high fashion PR where she works, Riley tells her she need only seek out a straight male version of herself – the mythical “Fag Stag”. But the glamorous guru Salome (Kim Allen) gives her conflicting advice. To nab a man, she insists, Violet must abandon her gay boys once and for all. When Violet arrives home from yet another disastrous date to find Luke has organized a gay sex party in her bedroom, she decides Salome may be right. In order to get a prized man of her own, Violet strikes out on a hilarious quest to change the woman she is. Chasing love at all costs, she may find it in the most unlikely of places.

Based on the trailer (bel0w) it looks like Cohn is delightful center of attention as unnecessary camp explodes around her. But it looks like it follows the conventions of a typical romantic comedy (with a large dose of raunchy), and my love for chick flicks just can say no.

Violet Tendencies is set for a May 24th DVD release. You can pre-order the film here. You can also watch it now on iTunes, Amazon.com or through your cable’s Video on Demand.

Here’s the trailer:

Queer Corner Quickie #13: Amazing Grace, Glee, DOMA, Lil B, Malcolm X, Kobe Bryant

A quick roundup of this week’s gay happenings…

Video of the Week: Guyanese singer Nhojj has created an amazing rendition of the hymn “Amazing Grace” and shot it against a music video featuring a gay wedding. This has been turning heads on YouTube for a little while now. I love it and wish Nhojj all the success in the world as he continues to use his art to support gay marriage rights.

Chris Colfer and Darren Criss who play Kurt and Blaine on Glee have been making their rounds in the press circuit. The creators behind Glee have released an album by The Warblers and the group promoted it on The Today Show with two performances. The group also appeared on Ellen for a performance and chat with Criss as well. Colfer is quite busy with the development of a new pilot on The Disney Channel, which he wrote, and a new movie which he also wrote and stars in. And he was in the Time 100, an annual list of the most influential people, where there are also a couple video interviews where he discusses his rise to fame.

A same-sex immigration bill is finally making its way through the U.S. Senate. We’ll see how far its gets.

A new study finds that teen suicide rates for gay and straights is higher in conservative areas. This doesn’t surprise me at all.

My friend and fellow blogger, Malcolm Varner, recently posted a very passionate and heartwarming Its Gets Better video.

Two 14-year-old girls in Minnesota commit suicide together and bullying may have been the reason.

Lil B says he’s receiving death threats for his I’m Gay album title. The straight rapper announced at Coachella that’s he’d be titling his next LP I’m Gay in an effort to support LGBT rights. GLAAD even released a statement about his efforts.

Gay Bashing Report: Gay rights groups want Austin shootings prosecuted as hate crime | 15 charges for U.S. student in Tyler Clementi’s suicide case, including bias | A transgender woman was brutally beaten by two teens at a Baltimore McDonald’s earlier this week, she’s now speaking out about the vicious attack and Equality Maryland is pushing for the assault to be charged as a hate crime, the McDonald’s employee who filmed the attack and put in on YouTube praising the attackers because the victim was a man has been fired

GOP House members seek impeachment of Iowa justices for same-sex marriage decision. Give me a break.

Malcolm X’s daughter disputes claims that X had a same-sex relationship in new bio on father.

A Senate education panel in Tennessee has approved a bill to prevent students from learning about homosexuality in public elementary and middle schools. Really?!

Christina Aguilera is to be the first star immortalized on West Hollywood’s new Gay Walk of Fame.

DOMA Update: Speaker John Boehner has hired law firm King & Spalding to defend DOMA (Defense of Marriage Act)  in court. (And fyi he’s using tax dollars to pay their $500/hour bill.)  But what’s worse is the contract with King & Spalding bars all employees of the international law firm from advocating for repeal of DOMA, which many are saying is illegal.

In response to Kobe’s usage of a gay slur during a recent game, GLAAD has been working with the Lakers to find a solution. First Kobe was fined $100,000 and now he and other Lakers players are appearing in this PSA about hurtful language. Also GLSEN and the NBA has teamed up to put out a national PSA. Here’s some behind-the-scenes video of that effort.

46 Years Ago [This Week]: First lesbian and gay protest at the White House.

The latest episode of No More Down Low features Noah’s Arc vets Doug Spearman and Darryl Stephens, they discuss being black gay actors in Hollywood and if Noah’s Arc is planning another comeback.

This amazing PSA from TheKidsAreListening.org is focused towards foster parents of LGBTQ youth.

Photo of the Week: After being discontinued, the New York Fire Department is releasing a new calendar filled with scantily clad firemen. The latest edition was released on Thursday and can be purchased here.

And here’s an ad for the calendar that was posted on YouTube.