Thursday, April 07, 2011

Target Issues Gay-Positive Message

A little damage control from Target: "Whether we're gay, straight, or identify any other way...we love whoever it is we love."

(Tipped by JMG reader Donald)

RELATED: Target has lost its lawsuit against the gay group it was trying to stop from collecting marriage equality petitions outside its San Diego stores.
Judge Barton said Target and its powerful law firm of Morrison & Foerster, which has offices globally, failed to show sufficient evidence that the big-box retailer’s business was suffering as a result of the petitioners. “This million-dollar law firm overreached in this case,” Watson said. “They got beat by a lawyer fresh out of law school and a volunteer lawyer.” Canvass For A Cause team members were out today at Target stores in Mission Valley in San Diego and in Encinitas. “We are celebrating our freedom of speech rights today,” Watson said.
Target now has a track record of 121-1 against groups canvassing outside its California stores. They are expected to appeal today's ruling, their first such loss.

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Defense Secretary Robert Gates To Troops: DADT Repeal Will Bring Little Change

Just posted to the Pentagon's official YouTube channel.
(Tipped by JMG reader John)

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HomoQuotable - Kerry Eleveld

"President Barack Obama has just announced his 2012 bid for re-election and the inevitable push for LGBT support - donor, voter, and activist - has begun. To be sure, many LGBT Americans would much rather see Barack Obama still gracing the Oval Office come January of 2013 than a Republican. And so, many of us are faced with a familiar dilemma: should we sublimate our intrinsic desire to continue advocating for full equality to the urgency of reelecting a man who has presided over some of the greatest advances in the history of the LGBT movement? My answer: No.

"This not an either-or proposition in my opinion, nor should we feel compelled to surrender our basic humanity to the whims of the election cycle. That type of thinking is a relic of days past when politicians held firmly to the notion that addressing LGBT concerns would undoubtedly be a drag on their electability. What we have witnessed over the past couple years is just the opposite. The repeal of 'don't ask, don't tell' scored huge points with President Obama's target voters -- independent, moderate, and progressive alike - and his declaration that the discriminatory Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional reestablished his ability to show bold leadership. Here's our new reality: The right thing to do is also the popular thing to do." - Former Advocate White House reporter Kerry Eleveld, writing for Equality Matters.

Read Eleveld's complete essay.

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Daft Punk - Alive

I've never gotten into Daft Punk, but there's a smokin' hot guy in this clip and Towleroad notes "the homoerotic tension runs high."

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Hacker: I'm Done With Westboro

(Tipped by JMG reader NYC Girl)

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DELAWARE: Civil Unions Passes Senate

The Delaware Senate just approved its civil unions bill! Washington Blade reports:
The Delaware Senate on Thursday passed a bill to legalize civil unions in the state by a 13-6 vote. Eleven votes were needed to pass it. The approval came after the Senate defeated two hostile amendments, including one that would have forced a state referendum on the issue. The second amendment called for expanding the measure to include opposite-sex couples. It was defeated 12-2.
The bill will be considered next week by the state House, where it is expected to pass easily. However...remember Maryland.

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Tweet Of the Day - Sarah Palin

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Joint Chiefs: No Problems With Repeal

Today the Joint Chiefs of Staff testified before the House Armed Services Committee to report that they foresee no problems with the implementation of the repeal of DADT.
"We've not seen issues," said Gen. James Amos, commandant of the Marine Corps. "There's not been anxiety over it from the forces in the field." Amos had been one of the strongest opponents of repealing Don't Ask Don't Tell, the 17-year ban on gays in the military. Last year, he said his men would be distracted - possibly fatally - by allowing gays to serve. But testifying alongside the chiefs of the Navy, Army and Air Force on Thursday, he told the House Armed Services Committee that training of the rank and file was going smoothly. "There hasn't been pushback," Amos said. Army Gen. Norton Schwartz said he was "more comfortable than I was" last year about the new policy.
The compulsive liars at the anti-gay Moonie Times report today's hearing differently, citing the "skeptical" words of one congressman in their headline.

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Bill Cosby: Donald Trump Is Full Of It

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American Family Association Poll: Why Are Homosexuals So Culturally Powerful?

In reaction to today's release of a Williams Institute study showing fewer LGBT Americans than other studies have shown, the American Family Association asks its followers why gay people are still so damn culturally powerful. Could it be...SATAN?

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Cast Out Your Poverty Demons

Prosper! Become a millionaire! Jeebus wants you rich!

(Source)

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Turning Gay Mice Straight?

The science journal Nature has published a study claiming that the sexual orientation of mice can be changed with the neurotransmitter 5-HT.
Although the question of to whom a male directs his mating attempts is a critical one in social interactions, little is known about the molecular and cellular mechanisms controlling mammalian sexual preference. Here we report that the neurotransmitter 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) is required for male sexual preference. Wild-type male mice preferred females over males, but males lacking central serotonergic neurons lost sexual preference although they were not generally defective in olfaction or in pheromone sensing. A role for 5-HT was demonstrated by the phenotype of mice lacking tryptophan hydroxylase 2 (Tph2), which is required for the first step of 5-HT synthesis in the brain. Thirty-five minutes after the injection of the intermediate 5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP), which circumvented Tph2 to restore 5-HT to the wild-type level, adult Tph2 knockout mice also preferred females over males. These results indicate that 5-HT and serotonergic neurons in the adult brain regulate mammalian sexual preference.
You'll have to subscribe to Nature to read the full study.

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SATURDAY: Furball NYC @ LGBT Center

Doors open 8PM, $10. Always a hot sweaty good time.

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Montana State GOP Rep Celebrates: Gays Can't Act Gay In Public In My State

Montana GOP state Rep. Bill Peterson claims that since the state legislature blocked a recent move to decriminalize homosexuality, there are happily still two laws which he can use to persecute gay people.
According to Peterson, chair of the House Judiciary Committee, there are at least two prosecutable offenses—felonies punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a $50,000 fine. One is the "recruitment" of non-gays. "Homosexuals can't go out into the heterosexual community and try to recruit people, or try to enlist them in homosexual acts," Peterson says. He provides an example: "'Here, young man, your hormones are raging. Let's go in this bedroom, and we'll engage in some homosexual acts. You'll find you like it.'"

Peterson hasn't actually seen this happen, he says, because "I don't associate with that group of people at all... I've associated with mainstream people all my life." The other offense, in Peterson's legal opinion, is the public display of homosexuality, since he believes the Supreme Court's decision only applies to private acts behind closed doors. Being gay in public, he says, is a wholly different matter: "In my mind, if they were engaging in acts in public that could be construed as homosexual, it would violate that statute. It has to be more than affection. It has to be overt homosexual acts of some kind or another... If kissing goes to that extent, yes. If it's more than that, yes."
The head of a local lawyers group clarifies: "The statute will not be enforced as written—ever. We take our marching orders not only from the legislature but from the courts in which we appear."

(Tipped by JMG reader Michael)

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Anti-Condom Message For Christian Kids

Satan makes condoms seem delicious like rat poison.

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MISSISSIPPI: 46% Of Polled Republicans Would Make Interracial Marriage Illegal

Public Policy Polling asked self-identified Mississippi Republicans how they feel (PDF) about interracial marriage. And 74% of those who'd like to ban interracial marriage also have a "favorable view" of Sarah Palin.

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ARKANSAS: State Supreme Court Blocks Move To Ban Gay Adoption

Something to brighten your day:
The Arkansas Supreme Court has upheld a decision to strike down a state law barring gay couples and other unmarried people living together from serving as adoptive or foster parents. The state's high court wrote in an opinion Thursday that the law burdens the privacy of unmarried couples who live together. A state judge struck down the law last April because he said it forced unmarried couples to choose between their relationships and becoming adoptive parents.
The case had been brought by the anti-gay state attorney general, who said that adoption was not a constitutionally protected right.

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Orlando Loses PBS Station

This morning my mom tips me to the news that Orlando's PBS station has been sold to a religious broadcaster. If the deal is approved by the FCC, Orlando will now have four local Christian television stations. Cable customers will continue to get the PBS station out of Daytona Beach. Television industry blog TVB reports:
The Public Broadcasting Service has lost its second large-market member station since the year began. WMFE-TV in Orlando, Fla., has been sold to Dallas-based Christian broadcaster Daystar Television for $5 million, according to the Orlando Sentinel. Community Communications Inc., the nonprofit that runs WMFE’s TV and radio operations, said increasing financial pressure led to the sale of the television station. [snip] Orlando is the 19th largest TV market in the United States, with 1.45 million television homes. Earlier this year, PBS lost its main member station in the nation’s No. 2 market, Los Angeles, when KCET-TV dropped its affiliation. KCET went independent Jan. 1, 2011, after being the main PBS affiliate in Southern California for four decades, citing financial pressure brought on by a 40 percent fee hike from PBS.
As I've mentioned here before, my first real post-college jobby-job was at WMFE, where I was a lowly news assistant. It was a generally terrible gig, but I did get to work the first space shuttle launches at Cape Canaveral. I was also out at work, as was my boss and half of the news department. I'm guessing that the GOP's recent attacks on PBS has something to do with WMFE throwing in the towel.

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Lawrence O'Donnell Rewrites Glenn Beck

Another classic take-down by Lawrence O'Donnell.

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Another Big Earthquake Rocks Japan

Tsunami warnings have been issued. Developing...

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Jon Stewart Grills Huckabee Over Support For Seven Mountains Dominionism

Last night Jon Stewart took Mike Huckabee to task over his declaration that Americans should be "forced at gunpoint" to listen to whackjob Seven Mountains dominionist David Barton. This is the first of three clips, Right Wing Watch has the full set.

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Open Thread Thursday

How's your love life?

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Homophobia From Manwich

Copyranter sez: "Maybe I'm just being a too-sensitive NYC metrosexual here, but casting a shirtless bear kinda adds fuel to the gay-bashing Manwich flame."

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Does Not Apply To Gay Men

(Source)

ENDA Reintroduced In House

The doomed-from-the-start 2011 edition of ENDA was introduced yesterday by Rep. Barney Frank. Chris Geidner reports at Metro Weekly:
At the end of the 111th Congress, 203 members of the 435-member body had joined Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) in co-sponsoring the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. The jobs protection bill, though only 14 members away from having a majority of the House as co-sponsors, never made it out of the House Education and Labor Committee chaired by ENDA co-sponsor Rep. George Miller (D-Calif.). Today, the bill, which would prohibit most employers from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation of gender identity, was reintroduced by Frank with only a few more than half that number -- 111 co-sponsors.
The HRC's Fred Sainz tells Geidner: "It's a start. The goal will be to work back up to a number that exceeds last session's number with a greater number of Republicans. We know that this is a building session, and frankly, I wouldn't measure success by the number of co-sponsors alone but by the amount of education and outreach we do to members."

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Crazy Eyes Gets Cozy With Hate Group

Yesterday Rep. Michele "Crazy Eyes" Bachmann traded compliments with Tony Perkins, the head of the SPLC-certified hate group, Family Research Council, as they discussed teabagger strategies to "take this country back."

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New Study: Nine Million LGBT Americans?

According to a study released today by the Williams Institute (PDF), there are almost nine million LGBT persons in the United States. That works out to 3.5% of the adult population. Via press release:
The Williams Institute, a leading think tank dedicated to the field of sexual orientation and gender identity-related law and public policy, released new research that estimates the size of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community in the United States. Drawing on information from four recent national and two state-level population-based surveys, the analyses suggest that there are more than 8 million adults in the US who are lesbian, gay, or bisexual, comprising 3.5% of the adult population. There are also nearly 700,000 transgender individuals in the US. In total, the study suggests that approximately 9 million Americans - roughly the population of New Jersey - identify as LGBT.
The study notes: "Estimates of those who report any lifetime same-sex sexual behavior and any same-sex sexual attraction are substantially higher than estimates of those who identify as lesbian, gay, or bisexual. An estimated 19 million Americans (8.2%) report that they have engaged in same-sex sexual behavior and nearly 25.6 million Americans (11%) acknowledge at least some same-sex sexual attraction."

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Beck: I Didn't Want This Job Anyway

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FOX NEWS: GOProud's Chris Barron Mistaken For Spin Doctors Lead Singer

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Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Savage Vs. Gallagher, Round 2

"I do not intend to 'educate your college students,' Maggie. Your college students—the offspring of NOM supporters—are being 'educated' at Brigham Young, Liberty University, Bob Jones, Seattle Pacific University, and other Christianist madrassas. My college tours typically take me to secular institutions of higher learning where the kids were hooking up and having sex long before my visit to campus.

"I know what women are like. I may not know what women taste like—I've never gone down on one—but I do know what women are like. My mother was a woman, my sister is a woman, my aunts are women, my favorite bartender is a woman, lots of my friends, neighbors, and coworkers are women. And as someone who sleeps with men and is a long-term relationship with a man, I know what (straight) women have to put up with. I'm not the first gay man that women have turned to for advice about love and sex, Maggie, and I won't be the last. And aren't you a practicing Catholic? Not knowing what women are like (or taste like) has never stopped the Pope from offering his unsolicited advice to women—no birth control, no abortions, no oral, no anal, no handjobs—and it's hypocritical of you to suggest that I'm not qualified to advise women, since I won't fuck 'em, without first telling that old fag in Rome to STFU already." - Dan Savage, responding to yesterday's attack from NOM chaircow Maggie Gallagher.

Read Savage's complete essay.

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A Gay Caveman?

The discovery of a 5000 year-old skeleton in the Czech Republic has scientists speculating.
During that period, men were traditionally buried lying on their right side with the head pointing towards the west; women on their left side with the head facing east. In this case, the man was on his left side with his head facing west. Another clue is that men tended to be interred with weapons, hammers and flint knives as well as several portions of food and drink to accompany them to the other side. Women would be buried with necklaces made from teeth, pets, and copper earrings, as well as domestic jugs and an egg-shaped pot placed near the feet. The ‘gay caveman’ was buried with household jugs, and no weapons.

Archaeologists do not think it was a mistake or coincidence given the importance attached to funerals during the period, known as the Corded Ware era because of the pottery it produced. From history and ethnology, we know that people from this period took funeral rites very seriously so it is highly unlikely that this positioning was a mistake,’ said lead researcher Kamila Remisova Vesinova. ‘Far more likely is that he was a man with a different sexual orientation, homosexual or transvestite. What we see here does not add up to traditional Corded Ware cultural norms.’ An oval, egg-shaped container usually associated with female burials was also found at the feet of the skeleton.

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Gadhafi To Obama: Please Call Off Attacks

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CALIFORNIA: Christianists Ramp Up Attacks On Gay-Positive Education Bill

Anti-gay Christianist groups are launching an all-out war on California's pending SB 48 bill, which calls for the inclusion of notable LGBT figures in lessons about civics and history. From a World Net Daily story about "sexual brainwashing":
"Life has consequences. This is what parents get with the Democrats," said SaveCalifornia.com President Randy Thomasson (pictured). "It's what they get with the teacher unions. It's what they get by believing the lie that people are born 'gay,' when they're not. Or that this is a harmless lifestyle. "This is what parents get when they place their children in the government school system and say that they have no other options," he continued. "Parents are seeing the tip of the iceberg in SB 48, and they need to wake up to the fact that the public school they went to as a child no longer exists. "Government schools in California are mandated by more than half a dozens laws already to bring children to think that homosexual, bisexual and transsexual [lifestyles are] good and natural and maybe even for them," he said.
SB 48 is sponsored by openly gay state Sen. Mark Leno, who, the above-linked article pointedly notes, had a former partner who died of AIDS. Because teaching kids about Harvey Milk will give them AIDS. Or something.

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The Palin/Bachmann 2012 Opera

From voiceover artist D.C. Douglas.

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Student Voting Laws By State

GOP-dominated state legislatures are making it harder for college students to vote without a local ID. Cuz you know who young people tend to vote for. Embiggen for details.

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Slick It Up

Probably NSFW.

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MSNBC On "Refuse To Lie" Campaign

You have to wonder how much editorial control openly gay MSNBC midday anchor Thomas Roberts has, as it seems he rarely misses an important LGBT story.

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Poor To Suffer Under GOP Budget

We can't be surprised by this.

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NASHVILLE: City Council Passes Bill Banning Businesses That Discriminate

If your company discriminates against its LGBT employees, Nashville will no longer do business with you.
Councilman Jamie Hollin, a sponsor of the bill, said after the vote that Metro had “sent a clear signal all around the world” that people of all kinds are welcome to work in Nashville. Advocates of gay rights agreed. “If you’re willing to work hard, and you’re talented, you’re welcome in Nashville, Tenn.,” said Chris Sanders, chairman of the Tennessee Equality Project’s Nashville chapter. Several council members spoke passionately against the bill. Critics on the council had so far made two arguments: that creating another protected class of employee made companies vulnerable to litigation, and that uneven policies across county lines would hamper commerce. Councilman Phil Claiborne said more bluntly what others had hinted at previously. Claiborne said the policy told business owners with religious convictions opposing homosexuality that they had to “abandon their core beliefs” to do business with Metro. “That’s a hypocritical travesty,” Claiborne said.
Nashville Mayor Karl Dean is expected to sign the bill.

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Tweet Of The Day - Stop Beck

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SAN DIEGO: Appeals Court Upholds Firing Of Teacher For "Immoral" Craigslist Ad

A California state court of appeals has overturned a lower court's ruling that the San Diego Unified School District acted improperly when it fired a teacher for his "men seeking men" ad posted on Craigslist.
The appeals court agreed with the school district that Lampedusa's conduct fit the Education Code definition of "immoral conduct." The district had appealed the commission's ruling. The ad included explicit pictures and a graphic explanation of the kinds of sexual activities that Lampedusa preferred. The ad, however, did not include his name or school affiliation. In a commission hearing, Lampedusa said he had placed similar ads four or five times in the past. The appeals court, in agreeing with the school district, noted that Lampedusa did not accept that the ad was improper because it might be seen by students or their parents.
The above-linked story does not say how the school learned about the ad.

UPDATE: According to CBS News, the school found about the ad when an anonymous male called the police. It's not clear why the police felt the need to notify the school.

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Jerry Falwell's Liberty University Got $445M In Public Money Last Year

Alex Pareene reports at Salon:
Liberty University, the evangelical private Christian school founded by dead apartheid-supporting bigot Jerry Falwell, received $445 million in federal financial aid last year. The Corporation for Public Broadcasting, by the way, received $420 million from the federal government. That massive sum was thanks to the growth of Liberty's online program, which enrolled 52,000 students last year. The school is the No. 1 recipient of Pell grant money in the state of Virginia.
Liberty was deeply in dept and on the verge of bankruptcy as recently as 2006. But shortly after Jerry Falwell was found face down in a pool of his own gravy, the school learned that he'd left them $34M via his life insurance policy.

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Westboro Mocks The NOH8 Campaign

If you can bear it (or even care) Westboro is tweeting out the link to the below video in which they mock the NOH8 campaign. (Twitter is all they have these days as all of Westboro's sites remain hacked.) Lots of NSFW language from God's Most Holy Family.

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HomoConQuotable - James Kirchick

"Those who fault [Pastor Terry] Jones for the behavior of Muslim extremists in Afghanistan must answer: Where does the blame-shifting end? Is Salman Rushdie, whose Satantic Verses earned him a fatwa from the Ayatollah Khomeini, to blame for the murder of his Japanese translator? Should the Danish cartoonist who drew images of Mohammed foot the bill for repairs to his nation's embassy in Damascus, which was burned by a mob in 2006? Why don't we just veil our women and execute our gays while we're at it, since that's what the radicals want? [snip]

"It is one thing to say that Jones' Koran-burning was a stupid and offensive thing to do. He is not Rushdie, after all, whose 'provocation' was the exercising of the creative spirit. It is another thing entirely, however, to move to the accusation that Jones is culpable for the murderous acts of people half way around the world. People who riot and murder at the burning of a book do not need a pretext to act like savages. That's exactly what they already are." - Homocon journalist James Kirchick, writing for the New York Daily News.

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FRIDAY: Blowoff NYC @ Highline Ballroom

Doors open 11:30PM, advance tickets are $15. One of these days, I'm going to get around to framing one of their great posters. By the way, Bob Mould's memoir, See A Little Light: The Trail Of Rage And Melody, comes out on June 15th.

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GOProud Vs. "Union Scum"

Yesterday GOProud members Matt Hissey and Brendan Kissam crashed a pro-union rally at Philadelphia's Temple University where their "Union Scum" sign was destroyed by union supporters. Hissey writes on his blog:
Two brave college students, who only wanted to bring a different point of view to a protest, were eviscerated, and nearly attacked. This was my first direct confrontation with union protesters, and I have never been so scared for my safety. They proved to me that they are not only un-educated on issues, but they are un-democratic. A democracy cannot function without dialogue and difference of opinion. The union thugs proved to me that they do not care about dissenting opinion. It is there way or the high way. No wonder they have such extravagant pensions and healthcare plans. When they do not get what they want, they take to the streets like wild animals and stifle any opposite whatsoever. Unions, simply put, are anti-American. They are like a virus, taking, taking, taking, growing stronger, and destroying everything they come into contact with.

RELATED: You may recall Matt Hissey for his declaration that he really doesn't like gay people, who "need to be more normal and straight-acting."

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COLORADO: Denver Archbishop Celebrates Defeat Of Civil Unions Bill

"In the face of unfriendly media coverage and heavy political pressure, opponents of the legislation did the right thing. They challenged and tabled the bill, killing it for this session. That sounds like a small act, but it took courage, especially in an environment of bitter criticism. The committee members who opposed the bill deserve our gratitude and support. The civil unions debate is about securing legitimacy for social arrangements and personal behaviors that most societies and religious traditions have found problematic from long experience—and that a great many people see as morally troubling, not because they are 'haters' or 'frightened' or 'bigots' or 'uneducated'—that kind of language is the real bigotry in this debate—but because they’ve carefully thought through the implications for society at large." - Denver Archbishop Charles Chaput.

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George Takei Auditions For Spider-Man


(Source)

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New Heights Of Hypocrisy For NOM

NOM is ALL upset because openly gay philanthropist and mega-millionaire Tim Gill has promised to oppose anti-gay politicians in his home state of Colorado. How dare he "threaten to dump" millions to oppose people who don't vote the way he wants them to! Oh wait, last month that's exactly what NOM said they would do to any Maryland legislator who voted for same-sex marriage.

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The $69 Hot Dog

What recession? "NYC restaurant Serendipity 3 now serves the world's most expensive hot dog, a steal at $69. Some of its features: truffle oil, a Germany-imported pretzel bun, and pure beef."

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Clever Dicks Use Condoms

Copyranter reviews this condom ad from France: "Watch our hero's smart-missile solve a complicated math problem, do a book signing, disable a bomb, and paint a nude—ladies swooning at every pants-drop. And of course, it always wears a condom. Because it's SMART. A bit heavy-handed (that's what his chafed dick said last night) for my tastes. The guy looks like a douche."

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Quote Of The Day - Diane Gramley

"We are undermining our military [with this policy] and thus undermining our national defense, so we are encouraging them to get into the thick of the battle because that's what it's going to take to get this terrible law thrown out. If we allow this implementation to go forth, then it will destroy our military, and there's no doubt about that. So we're encouraging Pennsylvanians to contact Congressman Bill Shuster and Congressman Mark Critz and ask them to protect our military." - Diane Gramley, head of the Pennsylvania chapter of the American Family Association, announcing a new AFA campaign against the repeal of DADT. The congressmen named above sit on the House Armed Services Committee.

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Bristol Palin Paid $262,000 For Work Against Teenage Pregnancy

Abstinence advocate and teen mother Bristol Palin was paid $262,000 for appearances made on behalf of a teen pregnancy prevention group.
Bristol Palin was 18 when she was appointed as a teen ambassador for the New York-based foundation in 2009, months after giving birth to son, Tripp. She and the 2-year-old boy's father, Levi Johnston, are no longer together. Palin family attorney John Tiemessen and foundation officials did not immediately return calls for comment Tuesday. Palin, who still works for the foundation, told The Associated Press last year that girls would think twice about having sex if they knew how tough it is to be a mother. She said she "wasn't prepared at all" for the dramatic changes in her life since becoming a mom. "I don't think anyone realizes how difficult it really is until you actually have a screaming baby in your arms and you're up all night," Palin said

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United States Of The Environment

(Source)

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Eurovision: Poland's Magdalena Tul

Anybody else hearing Britney?

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Tuesday, April 05, 2011

LGBT Rights Advocate Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (FL) Tapped To Chair Democratic National Committee

Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (FL), who has an stellar record regarding LGBT rights, was today named to head the Democratic National Committee. She will continue to serve in the House and replaces outgoing DNC chair Tim Kaine, who also today announced a Virginia bid for the Senate.

Schultz is a founding member of the Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus and in 2007 she voted for ENDA. She supports marriage equality, gay adoption, and unsurprisingly, has a 100% rating from the Human Rights Campaign. On Sunday she was named Public Official Star of the Year by the South Florida Pride Center.

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Vice President Jesse Ventura

Former Minnesota governor, pro wrestler, and 9/11 truther Jesse Ventura says he'd consider running for vice president on a ticket headed by Libertarian whackadoodle Rep. Ron Paul.
Ventura claimed that he would never run as a Republican or Democrat. "They are the problem, not the solution. We need to abolish political parties in this country,” he said in the Good Morning America interview. The former governor described Ron Paul as "the only federal elected official who will stand up for America on the congressional floor.” Paul ran as a Republican in 2008, and as a Libertarian in 1988. Jesse Ventura also spoke of Sarah Palin in a CNN interview, and estimated that she may win the Republican ticket in 2012.
An open atheist, Ventura is actually fantastic on LGBT rights. His TruTV series, Conspiracy Theory, just completed its second season.

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Maggie Gallagher Denounces Dan Savage

Maggie Gallagher puts her hooves to the NOM blog today to declare that Dan Savage's sexual ethic of valuing honesty over fidelity is going to be a disaster for the viewers of his upcoming MTV show.
There was a thoughtful analysis of [Savage's] sexual ethics in the Washington Monthly recently, for folks who want to get a taste of what he writes. The essay, by a Lutheran Minister, ends by pointing out where Savage ethics lead. A young man, in love with his girlfriend, with whom he has had a rather open and satisfying sexual relationship, but is tempted by more "sexual variety" asks how he can ask for that without ruining his relationship, which he values. Savage, who for all his experience, does not know what women are like, advises him to tell her openly and honestly what he wants, because otherwise the young man will just cheat on her.

The Lutheran minister, wiser in the ways of men and women, suggests that this young man is going to get pretty lonely looking for another woman able to give him all this young woman does--and who doesn't mind his playing around on the side. The possibility of taming one's sexual desire for the sake of another, or of a vow, is not in the Savage moral imagination. Libido will have out, and honesty about that is the best policy. He brings, in other words, the best of gay sexual ethics and experience to a straight audience, with potentially disastrous results.
Sexual ethics lectures from the woman who bore a child out of wedlock. Yup.

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PhoboQuotable - VA Gov. Bob McDonnell

"I don’t think we ought to force Catholic Charities to make that part of their policy or other similar situated groups. Many of our adoption agencies are faith-based groups that ought to be able to establish what their own policies are. Current regulations that say you can’t discriminate on the basis of race, color or national origin I think are proper. I think previous efforts to expand that to a number of other classes are going to have very strict scrutiny to make sure that we don’t inhibit the very fine work some faith-based organizations are doing." - Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, declaring his opposition to a proposed regulation banning discrimination against adoptive gay parents.

NOM and other anti-gay hate groups have branded the proposed regulation as stipulating "mandatory gay adoption." Gay people are not presently barred from adopting children in Virginia, but McDonnell appears to be in favor of that.

RELATED: Shortly after he took office in 2010, McDonnell stripped LGBT people from a statewide anti-discrimination executive order.

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Catholic League Vs. New Hampshire GOP

Catholic League blowhard Bill Donohue's war with the New Hampshire GOP is escalating, as today he threatens to sue them for libel.
Never in the nearly 18 years I have spent as president of the Catholic League have I seen more totally irresponsible statements issued by the lawmakers in any one state. While some Republicans—and all of those attacking the Catholic League are Republicans—are merely upset with our criticism of Rep. Bettencourt, two have clearly crossed the line. Rep. Lynne Ober wrote the following to us in an e-mail: "I agree that it is certainly unfortunate that the Catholic League chooses to harbor a person who helped pedophiles continue abusing children." Rep. Andrew Manuse wrote this missive: "I am now considering a bill to remove the Church's tax exempt status in New Hampshire, for you have clearly shown that you no longer want it." I have a challenge for the two of them. Why doesn't Ober take the next step by personally accusing me of harboring a person who helped pedophiles continue to abuse children? Organizations can't sue for libel, but individuals can. Why doesn't Manuse go right ahead with his bill to remove the Church's tax-exempt status? We'd love to present his e-mail in court.
Popcorn. Recliner. Feet up.

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Lucy Liu for New York Marriage

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American Family Association: Slutty Black People Are Rutting Like Rabbits

"Welfare has destroyed the African-American family by telling young black women that husbands and fathers are unnecessary and obsolete. Welfare has subsidized illegitimacy by offering financial rewards to women who have more children out of wedlock. We have incentivized fornication rather than marriage, and it’s no wonder we are now awash in the disastrous social consequences of people who rut like rabbits." - American Family Association spokesbigot Bryan Fischer, earning his hate group stripes every day. And all of the GOP presidential candidates continue to appear on his radio show.

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Cindy Jacobs: God Is Sending Natural Disasters Because Of The Repeal Of DADT

Not only did God kill all those birds in Arkansas because of the repeal of DADT, the earthquake in Japan and that tsunami? Totally because of gay soldiers in the U.S.

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Washington "Moonie" Times Publishes Repulsive Anti-Trans Editorial

The Washington Times has published an editorial denouncing the attempt to allow transgender New York City residents the right to a birth certificate noting their correct gender. The piece refers to trans people as "just messed up" individuals who have "surgically mutilated" their bodies. And it goes from there.
It’s fair to ask where all of this is heading. Could Jocelyn Wildenstein - famously nicknamed “Catwoman” for the feline appearance she achieved through multiple plastic surgeries - decide after years of struggling with her identity that she is actually a cat? With the precedents set by these new policies, all she would need to do to secure her new cat identity is find a doctor to certify that she was undergoing “appropriate clinical treatment” to secure the right to demand that her official government documents be altered to reflect who she has become. She’s already had the surgeries. The old saying about giving an inch and losing a mile comes to mind. As Sam Berkley, born Samantha, complained in a press conference about the lawsuit, “I don’t feel comfortable with the government deciding whether I’m a man or not.” Strike “man” and replace with “human” or “sane” and there’s not much of a difference.
RELATED: A favorite publication for wingnuts like Tony Perkins and Maggie Gallagher, the Washington Times was founded by Rev. Sun Myung Moon's Unification Church, who believe that marriage is between one man and one woman who have just met for the first time at a mass wedding consisting of thousands of people. Moon has called gay people "dung-eating dogs" who will be murdered by God. In the 80s, he served time in U.S. federal prison for fraud.

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How To Get A Cushy State Job

1. Drop out of college.
2. Rack up multiple DUI convictions.
3. Get your dad to give the Wisconsin governor $121K.
4. Jackpot!

(Source)

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Tweet Of The Day - Rep. Tammy Baldwin

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GOP Unveils Budget That Overhauls Medicare & Medicaid, Repeals Obamacare

House Budget Committee chairman Rep. Paul Ryan today unveiled a long-term plan that would dramatically overhaul the way the federal government and states administer Medicare and Medicaid. The GOP plan also, of course, repeals "Obamacare."
Ryan's budget proposal aims to slash $6 trillion from the budget over the next 10 years. It would in part accomplish that by changing Medicaid -- which serves low-income families -- from a government-run insurance program to a system of block grants distributed to states. Medicare, a government-run health care program for those over 65, would essentially turn into a "premium support" program -- the government would essentially provide vouchers for health care, but the funds would go directly to the insurer rather than the consumer. The government would give private health insurers a set amount of money to cover senior citizens. The change to Medicare would go into effect in 2022 under the plan. It's a risky proposal politically, given Medicare's overwhelming popularity, but Ryan and the GOP are prepared to argue the changes are necessary.
Below is the PR clip Ryan issued today in support of his plan.

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BRAZIL: The Deadliest Place In The World To Be Transgender

Reeling from the murders of numerous transgender people, Brazilian activists have launched a petition campaign to the nation's president.
President Dilma Rousseff, You have said that human rights are at the “center of your politics.” In the face of a dramatic rise in attacks and murders of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Brazilians, we need your immediate support for the passage of the Anti-Homophobia law (PLC122) that will ensure that ALL Brazilians have equal protection under the law.
Organizers of the international activist group All Out write us today to request your signatures on the petition. They hope to gather 100,000 names and generate media attention when delivering the petitions to the president.

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ILLINOIS: Federal Appeals Court Rules Against Anti-Gay Walmart Employee

The Seventh Court of Appeals has upheld a lower court's ruling against an Illinois woman who sued Wal-Mart for religious discrimination. According to the woman, she has a God-given right to scream anti-gay epithets at her coworkers. Gay City News reports:
According to the unsigned ruling, Tanisha Matthews, who describes herself as an Apostolic Christian, worked as an overnight stocker at a Wal-Mart store in Joliet, Illinois. While on a break, she took part in a heated conversation with other employees about God and homosexuality. Another employee who participated reported to management that Matthews was "screaming over her" that God does not accept gays, they should not "be on earth," and they will "go to hell" because they are not "right in the head." During a company investigation of the incident, five other employees confirmed that Matthews said gays are sinners who are going to hell. Wal-Mart managers considered these remarks to be "serious harassment" in violation of the company's "Zero Tolerance" harassment policy, which bars any conduct that could be interpreted as harassment on the basis of categories that include sexual orientation. Serious harassment is considered "gross misconduct" that is grounds for dismissal.
The ruling observes: "If Matthews is arguing that Wal-Mart must permit her to admonish gays at work to accommodate her religion, the claim fails. Wal-Mart fired her because she violated company policy when she harassed a co-worker, not because of her beliefs, and employers need not relieve workers from complying with neutral workplace rules as a religious accommodation if it would create an undue hardship." The above-linked article notes that Christian legal groups have been ramping up claims of the right to proselytize in the workplace. Courts, so far, have largely disagreed.

Read the entire ruling.

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House Democrats To Boehner: What Are Your Plans Regarding DOMA Defense?

Via press release, a letter from the six House Democrats who are lead sponsors of the bill to repeal DOMA.
Dear Mr. Speaker,

It is our understanding that deadlines for Congressional action are fast approaching and that House General Counsel or outside counsel retained to represent the House must appear and move to intervene or otherwise participate, if it chooses to do so, in at least one case, Windsor v. United States of America, on or before April 18, 2011. We therefore ask that you brief all interested Members before April 18, 2011 regarding the course of action with regard to the Winsor
case and any other proceedings where the House intends to defend DOMA. Among other things, we are interested in a status report on who will be representing the House, estimates regarding the cost and length of proposed litigation efforts, the anticipated role of the House in litigation (i.e., intervenor or amicus curiae), and your assessment regarding the likelihood of success on the merits. If you or House General Counsel already have arranged for representation by outside counsel, we would welcome and appreciate their participation in this briefing.
The letter was signed by Jerrold Nadler, Barney Frank, Tammy Baldwin, Jared Polis, David Cicilline, and John Conyers. Metro Weekly has the full letter (PDF).

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The Rise Of Seven Mountains Dominionism

Probably the scariest development in the Christianist movement in recent years is the advent of "Seven Mountains" dominionism. Right Wing Watch explains:
Seven Mountains dominionism seeks to place Christians in control over the seven forces that shape and control our culture: (1) Business; (2) Government; (3) Media; (4) Arts and Entertainment; (5) Education; (6) Family; and (7) Religion. The reason for this, as Lance Wallnau, the leading advocate for Seven Mountains theology, explained is that Jesus "doesn't come back until He's accomplished the dominion of nations." And that way "dominion of nations" is accomplished is by having Christians gain control of these "seven mountains" in order to install a "virtual theocracy" overseen by "true apostles" who will fight Satan and his Antichrist agenda.
One of the most popular advocates of Seven Mountains is historical revisionist David Barton, about whose sermons Mike Huckabee said last week: "I almost wish that there would be like a simultaneous telecast and all Americans would be forced, forced — at gun point no less — to listen to every David Barton message. And I think our country would be better for it. I wish it’d happen."

In 1952 Congress designated the first Thursday in May as the National Day of Prayer, an event now hijacked by Seven Mountains proponents. Check out their bizarre and not a little terrifying promotional clip.

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Matt Baume: Politicians & Gay Bashers

This week's episode includes an update on the DOMA/deportation situation from attorney Lavi Soloway.

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NEW ZEALAND: A Man May Not Marry...

My pal Leif Wauters points out New Zealand's rather exhaustive and confusing list of who a man may not marry. Daughter's son's wife? Wait, what? Same-sex marriages don't appear on the banned list, possibly because New Zealand offers civil unions. Leif and his husband were forced to emigrate to New Zealand last year because of DOMA. They are watching the developments on that front very closely.

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HomoQuotable - B. Daniel Blatt

"Americans know that advancing employees by merit is what 'wins' for business. And that is why most employers don’t discriminate against gay people. Once again, government shouldn’t be telling entrepreneurs how to run their enterprises. They don’t need a nanny state to tell them as much. If a company discriminates against quality gay people, it will suffer in the marketplace, with a lower caliber of worker and a reduced efficiency of operation.

"Alas that Log Cabin cannot put forward a conservative position on gay issues and still feels instead it just has to join the gay groups in looking for solutions to the perceived problems in our community. With increasing social acceptance of gay people, with more and more corporations adopting non-discrimination policies and offering domestic partnership benefits, ENDA is a solution in search of a problem. And conservatives would do well to oppose it." - B. Daniel Blatt, Gay Patriot blogger and GOProud member.

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Catholic Church Fights CT Move To Lift Statute Of Limitations On Molestation

Connecticut lawmakers says they are shocked by the Catholic Church's opposition to a proposed lifting of the statute of limitations on lawsuits for the sexual abuse of minors.
“I’m just so surprised they are opposing this. We certainly had the sense last year that they would not,” Sen. Beth Bye, D-West Hartford, said of the bill she proposed that eliminates the limitation on civil suits prospectively. Bills that would have removed any limitation on when a suit could be brought retroactively, aimed to a large extent at the childhood victims of Dr. George Reardon, a former physician at St. Francis Hospital and Medical Center, failed to go forward in 2009 and 2010. More than 100 lawsuits have been brought against Reardon, who died in 1998, and against St. Francis. Police say more than 50,000 slides of child pornography found in the home where Reardon once lived had belonged to the doctor, who practiced medicine at St. Francis for more than 30 years.
Current Connecticut law permits lawsuits for 30 years after a minor victim's 18th birthday. One advocate for victims of childhood sexual abuse says that half of her clients come forward after the time limit has expired.

(Tipped by JMG reader Casey)

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Newt Gingrich Denies That The American Family Association Is A Hate Group

Just because the AFA has called for criminalizing homosexuality, for banning Muslims from the military and elected office, and has declared that Native Americans shouldn't have the right to own land ....why that's NO reason to call them a hate group. They are decent Christians and totally deserving of all that dough funneled to them by Gingrich! Video and question by Igor Volsky at ThinkProgress.

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IRELAND: Civil Unions Begin

Barry Dignam and Hugh Walsh (above) today become among Ireland's first gay couples to be joined under the nation's civil partnerships law. The law went into effect on January 1st with a three month waiting period.
Theirs is not the first civil partnership to take place here – six civil partnerships have already been registered in the State arising from court-granted exemptions to the usual three-month notice which couples must give to the General Registrar Office. Mr Dignam admitted that when the couple originally found out that they were to be the first gay couple who were to avail of the new regime without first seeking an exemption to do so, they did consider postponing the ceremony given the media attention that would inevitably follow. “We did have an opportunity to move the date but we felt that we would have been cheating [gay] people who had been through an awful lot of hardship – those who had been ridiculed and even jailed in the past,” he said.

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A Message From Borders Books

(Source)

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NOM Rhode Island: House Vote On Marriage May Be Very Close

The leader of NOM's Rhode Island chapter appeared on CBN yesterday to praise Catholic and Hispanic churches for "standing up against gay marriage." According to this NOM spokesbigot, marriage equality has a shot of passage in the state House, but petitions from anti-gay churches may have convinced the Senate not to move forward.

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Photo Of The Day

Yup, that's a Great White. But it's OK, that one's totally small.

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Eurovision: Macedonia's Vlatko Ilievski

Officially competing as the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia due to a long-running dispute over Greece's region with the same name. Rusinka is Macedonian for "Russian girl."

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Monday, April 04, 2011

Super Gay NCAA Recap

Wait for the end.

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NEW YORK CITY: Five Queer Rising Activists Arrested In Traffic Blockade

Despite New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo's vehement support for marriage equality and his recent promise for a "full court press" on the issue in the state Senate, activists from Queer Rising today stopped traffic outside of Cuomo's Manhattan office. Via press release:
Five people have been arrested for blocking rush-hour traffic just outside Governor Cuomo's Manhattan office, at East 41 Street and 3rd Avenue. The Queer Rising members unfurled a 75-foot banner that reads, “Marriage Equality NOW! Call Cuomo: 518-474-8390!!!” Five members of Queer Rising members handcuffed and chained themselves in the middle of the street and refused to leave the demonstration. Those arrested were: Natasha Dillon (26, lesbian activist); Kevin Donohue (51, gay Jewish activist); Melissa Kleckner (31, straight ally); Ali Lozano (20, lesbian student activist); Robert Moore (30, gay Mormon activist).
A separate action was staged simultaneously at Grand Central Terminal in which ten drag queens officiated mock same-sex weddings.

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Tweet of The Day - Mister Cee

Hot 97 radio personality Mister Cee (real name Calvin Labrun) is denying police claims that he was found getting a public blowjob from another man.
The 44-year-old Labrun—who was a producer on BIG's debut album Ready to Die and who has a Tropical Fantasy flavor named after him—was found by police around 3:55 a.m. in a car with 20-year-old Lawrence Campbell, who appeared to be servicing him. This was not the first bust for the "Throwback at Noon" host, he reportedly was arrested in lower Manhattan last October 8 and November 20 while loitering for the purpose of prostitution (soliciting, we are assuming). In his October arrests Mister Cee plead guilty to disorderly conduct, while his November arrest's charges appear to have been dropped. Campbell does not appear to have a criminal history.
Hip-hop fan blogs have gone crazy with both denials and condemnations. The arrest has also become a top trending topic on Twitter.

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IRS Ombudsman Predicts No Penalties For Married Gay Couples Filing Joint Returns

The anti-gay Alliance Defense Fund is quite unhappy with the IRS ombudsman who says that married gay couples can expect little retribution for filing joint returns.
Nina E. Olson, the national taxpayer advocate who acts as an ombudsman for the I.R.S., acknowledged the uncertainty surrounding federal taxation of same-gender spouses in an annual report to Congress. In the report, she said that taxpayers may take a filing position without penalty if there is “substantial authority” to do so, such as a court case that hasn’t been overruled by the United States Court of Appeals. And there happen to be two such cases, which are currently on appeal.
Last week the Refuse To Lie campaign launched with the warning for gay couples to seriously consider the possible ramifications.

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Castro Street's Gay Bookstore To Close

San Francisco's A Different Light bookstore is said to be going out of business.
The Castro’s A Different Light Bookstore, one of the few remaining LGBT bookstores in the United States, is apparently closing. This comes on the heels of the closure of the Mission's Modern Times, another independent progressive bookstore. “Everything must go” signs were spotted in the store Saturday. Dismantled shelving sat in a pile in the back of the store. Neighborhood chatter is that doors will close for good this spring. A Different Light has been the gathering place for the Bay Area’s gay literati for decades – the company was first established in 1979. Local authors like Armistead Maupin would often pack the store full of eager readers when launching their latest titles.
Washington DC's Lambda Rising closed early last year. Oscar Wilde Books in the West Village and A Different Light's WeHo outlet both closed in 2009. What's left?

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A Short Film By Charlie Sheen

Wow. Just wow.

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America's Most Hated Family (In Crisis)

Clip description:
Following up on his 2007 documentary, The Most Hated Family in America, Louis Theroux returns to Topeka, Kansas, for a week-long visit with the Westboro Baptist Church. He again joins the Phelps family on their controversial pickets where they try to antagonise communities with offensive slogans and anti-gay placards. But four years on from Louis's last visit, there are signs of disarray in the Phelps clan. A series of defections of family members has shaken up the church.
This is Part 1 of four parts.

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Equality California: Should We Take Proposition 8 Back to The Ballot In 2012?

Equality California says that since it may be years before Prop 8 is resolved in federal court, it's time to talk about attempting its repeal on next year's ballot. Via press release:
Because legal experts are advising that the Proposition 8 federal challenge could take years to resolve, Equality California is launching a community engagement initiative to start a discussion on whether to return to the ballot in 2012 to repeal the marriage ban or whether to wait for a final decision by the courts. Before making any recommendation, Equality California will survey its membership, hold 10 town halls across the state and an online town hall, conduct a poll of likely 2012 voters, consult with political experts, coalition partners and engage with its members and the LGBT community. Equality California will announce results of polling and analysis by Labor Day. Details and a complete schedule for community town halls are forthcoming with initial meetings scheduled for San Francisco on May 19, West Hollywood on May 25 and San Diego on June 2.
A small but dogged campaign to place a repeal of Prop 8 on the 2010 ballot ultimately collapsed without the support of major groups like Equality California.

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Tainted Love

Male fertility probably isn't a major concern for most of you, but scientists say they've found a new predictor for low sperm count. It's the length of your taint. SRSLY.
That distance, measured from the anus to the underside of the scrotum, is linked to male fertility, including semen volume and sperm count, the study found. The shorter the AGD, the more likely a man was to have a low sperm count. This offers the prospect of a relatively simple screening test for men, said study co-author Shanna Swan of the University of Rochester Medical Center. "It's non-invasive and anybody can do it, and it's not sensitive to the kinds of things that sperm count is sensitive to, like stress or whether you have a cold or whether it's hot out," Swan said in a telephone interview.
You know somebody is going to work this into a porn plot.

(Tipped by JMG reader Marlin)

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Zombies Against Teabaggers

Hundreds of zombies flooded the streets of Madison, Wisconsin this weekend to protest the lack of delicious brains in the Tea Party-dominated state legislature. The zombie chant near the end of the below clip cracked me up.

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Rep. Anthony Weiner Schools The GOP: This Is How A Bill Becomes A Law

Sometimes it feels like Weiner and his college roommate Jon Stewart should totally switch jobs.

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NEW HAMPSHIRE: House GOP Leader Calls Catholic Bishop "A Pedophile Pimp"

New Hampshire House GOP leader D.J. Bettencourt is under fire for calling Bishop John McCormack a "pedophile pimp" after the cleric demonstrated against proposed budget cuts for social services.
Before being named bishop of Manchester in 1998, McCormack served as a top aide to Cardinal Bernard Law in Boston, where the Catholic sex abuse scandal began and where he was in charge of investigating sexual misconduct allegations. In 2002, McCormack averted unprecedented criminal charges against the New Hampshire diocese by agreeing that it had harmed children by moving abusive priests from parish to parish. "Would the Bishop like to discuss his history of protecting the 'vulnerable?'" Bettencourt wrote. "This man is a pedophile pimp who should have been led away from the State House in handcuffs with a rain coat over his head in disgrace. He has absolutely no moral credibility to lecture anyone."
The Catholic League's Bill Donohue is predictably outraged: "As president of the nation's largest Catholic civil rights organization, I am contacting every member of the New Hampshire House calling for a Resolution of Censure. House Majority Leader David J. Bettencourt has had plenty of time to retract his vicious assault on Manchester Bishop John B. McCormack and refuses to do so. Therefore, it is only fitting that he be censured for his invective."

RELATED: Bettencourt has already earned the scorn of the Christian right for saying that a repeal of same-sex marriage should not be among his chamber's priorities. That prompted NOM to brand him "an enemy of the family."

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