Video Sing-a-Long: Chow Down at Chik-fil-A? Even if You’re Gay?

 

They just want a little meat without the Bible.

Chk-fil-A: Closed on Sundays and strongly anti-LGBT

Married Lesbian Couple Rescued 40 From Utoya Massacre, Mainstream Media Ignores It

In the midst of the coverage about Anders Breivik’s murderous spree on Utoya is story of bravery, one that has gone under-reported in mainstream media.

Hege Dalin and her spouse Toril Hansen, a legally married lesbian couple, rescued 40 children who had jumped in the lake to escape Breivik’s rampage. Hearing the shots andscreams, the couple revved up their boat and scooped up children from the bloody water, returning to the island four times, despite bullet holes in the side of the boat. They saved 40 children.

While the story has received coverage in LGBT media, why hasn’t it been picked up by MSM which reported other rescues?

Talk About Equality quotes  the women’s story in Helsinki’s largest daily newspaper, Helsingin Sanoma

We were eating. Then shooting and then the awful screaming. We saw how the young people ran in panic into the lake.

In the aftermath, the couple said:

We did not sleep last night at all. Today, we have been together and talked about the events.

Now it’s time for all of us to talk about the bravery of a couple who repeatedly chose to risk their lives to save 40 children, a couple who have been seemingly overlooked, perhaps because they don’t fit into the comfortable stereotypes of heroes. Perhaps because they are lesbian and married.

I hope that’s not the case, because it would suck if the media is that narrow minded and fearful of celebrating true heroism.

Thank you, Hege and Toril. Thank you. And thank you, Norway for legalizing gay marriage in 2009.

GWBush’s Daughter Barbara Bush Speaks Up for Marriage Equality


Barbara Bush, the older fraternal twin of former president George W. Bush has joined her mother Laura Bush, anti-Prop 8 attorney Ted Olsen and Dick Cheney (!) as a supporter of marriage equality, appearing in a new video from the Human Rights Campaign’s “New Yorkers for Marriage Equality”  push.

I’m Barbara Bush and I’m a New Yorker for marriage equality.  New York is about fairness and equality and everyone should have the right to marry the person that they love.  Join us.

In September BB attended the American Foundation for Equal Rights dinner in New York.

The reality is marriage equality is a non-partisan issue. It doesn’t matter if the Pope or Pat Robertson marries a couple; unless they have that piece of paper signed and mailed in, they aren’t married. So let’s let everyone have that civil license and leave the churches, temples, groves to their own God/s, while the bureaucrats handle their business.

Elton John: “F**CK YOU!” to Anti-Civil Marrigage Equality H8ers

Last night I went to the American Foundation for Equal Rights benefit concert. Full disclosure, I paid for my ticket. AMFR is the sole sponsor of the federal court challenge of California’s Proposition 8, known as Perry v. Schwarzenegger.

Elton John was awesome (more on that later), and it was kinda thrilling to see Theodore Olson and David Boies take the stage together. Olsen said  their plan was for him get to the four Supreme Court Justices that voted his way and the five that voted Boies’ way re: Florida, and that way they’d have all nine. Laughs form the audience. Chairman Rob Reiner said the whole point was being non-partisan. Both John Podesta and the Cato Institute are involved with AFER.

Okay done with the speechifications and on to Elton John: Sir Elton, once he realized the difference between UK civil unions and state civil unions, got involved in the battle against Prop 8. He told the audience of 300 at the start of the 90 minute show that he

would always be there for you standing at the forefront to help you guys

and while he realized he had everything, he didn’t have the right to be married to his partner of 17 years. Midway through the set which included several new songs plus “Levon,” “Philadelphia Freedom,” “Candle in the Wind,” “I’m Still Standing,’ “crocodile Rock,” “Tiny Dancer,” “Rocket Man,” and Benny and the Jets,” plus some awesome jazz, boogey-woogey and barrelhouse  piano improv, Sir Elton, who looked like he was having a ton of fun, got serious with a speech ending with the full force of righteous anger toward the churches, the people and politicians who deny equal marriage rights:

Fuck you! Fuck you!

Celebrity spotting was not the purpose of the evening, though  Adam Lambert,  Golden Globe winner/Glee star Jane Lynch and Bruce Vilanch–who our cat Mr Bruce is partially named for (see photo below)–were two rows in front of me.

The event was held at Ron Burkle’s estate in the benefit section of the vast grounds, with one tent for the concert and another for enormous and elegant buffet, with an open bar. The passed hors d’oeuvres included mini-burgers, brie and pear tarts, shrimp and wee pizzas, plus tables loaded with salads, green beans, vegan mousaka, braised short ribs on puff pastry and some amazing desserts including homemade s’mores.

But Elton, OMG! It was incredible to see him up close like that and for such a good cause.

Mr. Bruce

Bruce Vilanch

Top Gun Actress Weds Longtime Girlfriend

Actress Kelly McGillis, who starred opposite Tom Cruise in the 1980s war-is-good-fun-and-gets-you-laid propaganda film melodrama Top Gun (whence issueth the phrase “wingman”), married her long-time girlfriend Melanie Leis in a New Jersey civil ceremony.

The actress, who has two children with her ex-husband Fred Tillman, came out in 2009 after her children had left for college, telling the New York Times this week:

That was one of those moments when somebody asked me a question, my kids had gone from home, so I really didn’t have to protect anyone by skirting the question, and I just decided to be absolutely honest.

Here’s to a happy marriage. And the hope that one day, that everyone can have civil marriage equality with full benefits state and federal, and express who they are without fear of repercussions.

Millions Thrilled It’s Not a Joke: Anna Paquin Sez She’s Bisexual

Oscar winning actress Anna Paquin taped a video PSA for the True Colors Foundation Give a Damn project, announcing:

I’m Anna Paquin. I’m bisexual, and I give a damn.

Radaronline.com has one of the organization’s videos which features Elton John, Whoopi Goldberg, Cynthia Nixon, Sharon and Kelly Osbourne, Judith Light, Kim Kardashian, Clay Aiken, and Wanda Sykes–all proclaiming they “Give A Damn” about equality no matter what their sexuality, but Paquin’s announcement has caused wegivedamn.org‘s servers to clog as everyone rushes to view her buoyant message.

The True Colors Fund is the non-profit arm of the True Colors Tour. Co-founded by Cyndi Lauper, the organization’s goals are

to inspire and engage everyone, particularly the straight community, to become active participants in the advancement of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered (LGBT) equality and ensure a strong and vibrant LGBT community.

Manifest Equality Gallery Opens in Los Angeles

Manifest Equality–a huge free show featuring hundreds of visual artists in support of equal rights for the LGBT community–opens today March 3 in Los Angeles and runs through March 7.

The show’s manifesto is simple:

We believe in full and equal rights for all Americans with no exceptions. Throughout history artists have lent their creative expression to the ideas and issues that shape life in our communities, our country and our world. The MANIFESTEQUALITY Gallery gathers together a diverse array of hundreds of the nation’s most talented visual artists under one roof to celebrate that role and join with our gay (LGBT) friends, family members and co-workers to demand full and equal rights for all Americans.

Artists include Gary Baseman, Robbie Conal, Shepard Fairey, actor Josh Leonard, director Jesse Dylan, Harvey Pekar, Cathy Bleck, Ron English and hundreds more. Actor Jason Lee was spotted buying a photo, and many other pieces were sporting red “sold” dots before the night was over.

Last night’s preview featured Shepard Fairey and Daisy O’Dell DJing and a set by Emily Wells, plus inspirational speeches from Cleve Jones and Rick Jacobs from the Courage Campaign.

The show is staged in a vacant store on Vine Street in Hollywood that was an eyesore, and which has now been resurrected on both the inside and outside into a vibrant and colorful location, expressing the power of art to transform. Transformation is a function of art, and Manifest Equality expresses that goal with thoughtfulness, care and wit, providing artists and viewers the opportunity to explore their concepts of equality and civil rights.

The show was conceived by Yosi Sergant, Apple Via and Jennifer Gross and put together by volunteers in a matter of weeks, an impressive and exciting task that overall succeeds in its vision and execution.

photos: Victor Nguyen-Long

Wayback Machine: Obama Supported Gay Marriage in 1996

feb-08-2007-vid00075_1.thumbnail.jpgIn 1996, while the tormented post-teens of Beverly Hills 90210 were dealing with secondary characters like Joni and her stripper daughter Lily and Tara-the-psycho-Kelli-wanna-be, Barack Obama was running for Illinois state senator.

As part of his campaign, he answered  a questionnaire for a Chicago gay and lesbian newspaper Outlines (now merged with the Windy City Times) and another for IMPACT which was then “Chicago’s main GLBT political action committee.”

His responses, part of  1996 article were never challenged or corrected by Obama. The original questionaires were recently uncovered by editor-in-chief Tracy Baim while she was going through some old boxes of papers. Eureka!

In his typed answers to the Outlines questionnaire, Obama clearly stated he was in favor of same-sex marriage, which he has since opposed on the public record during both his U.S. senate run and his campaign for president:

I favor legalizing same-sex marriages, and would fight efforts to prohibit such marriages.

At the same time, Obama completed another questionnaire for IMPACT which discussed a pending same-sex marriage resolution. Obama, in his own handwriting, wrote:

I would support such a resolution.

In 2004 during his bid for the U.S. Senate, Obama sat down with Tracy Baim at Windy City Times for an interview. Here are some excerpts:

WCT: But you think, strategically, gay marriage isn’t going to happen so you won’t support it at this time?

Obama: What I’m saying is that strategically, I think we can get civil unions passed. I think we can get SB 101 passed. I think that to the extent that we can get the rights, I’m less concerned about the name. And I think that is my No. 1 priority, is an environment in which the Republicans are going to use a particular language that has all sorts of connotations in the broader culture as a wedge issue, to prevent us moving forward, in securing those rights, then I don’t want to play their game.

But as Baim points out in this weeks’ cover story about the questionnaires and interviews:

civil unions are not “marriage” unless 100 percent of the benefits are the same across all states and the federal government.

In the 2004 interview, Obama also comes out against a Constitutional amendment against gay marriage, saying:

I would oppose that.

Which gives hope that DOMA will be repealed–if it can get through the House and Senate.

[H/T Ben Smith at Politico]

Melissa Etheridge Writes About Warren

melissaetheridge300.thumbnail.jpgOn the heels of her wife Tammy Lynne Michaels’ blog about Rick Warren, Melissa Etheridge posted her feeling about Pastor Rick on HuffPo.

After eloquently explaining the struggle for equal rights and her preconceptions of Pastor Rick, Etheridge describes her phone conversation with Warren:

He explained in very thoughtful words that as a Christian he believed in equal rights for everyone. He believed every loving relationship should have equal protection. He struggled with proposition 8 because he didn’t want to see marriage redefined as anything other than between a man and a woman. He said he regretted his choice of words in his video message to his congregation about proposition 8 when he mentioned pedophiles and those who commit incest. He said that in no way, is that how he thought about gays. 

She goes on to say that maybe instead of marching on his church

we can show up en mass [sic] and volunteer for one of the many organizations affiliated with his church that work for HIV/AIDS causes all around the world. Maybe if they get to know us, they won’t fear us.

Well, okay…not to nit pick, but his church doesn’t believe in condoms or family planning for HIV/AIDS prevention, and works hard in Africa to proselytize his message of Jesus and abstinence, using HIV outreach as an evangelical tool. His church believes that gays who are actively practicing homosexuality are not welcome as members. And Warren says gays should suppress their urges the same way other people suppress anger or shyness.

Melissa, Warren and his ilk aren’t "afraid" of gays: They think gays are sinners who are convertible to their belief system, which includes no gay sex and straight sex only in marriage. 

If you can get Warren to believe that civil marriage equality  does not mean a religious marriage..right on. If you can get him to expand his vision to have marriage be more than just a religious concept, that would be awesome. And, btw, he’s wrong about 5,000 years of marriage being solely between one man and one woman. There are plural marriages still in Islam, as there have been for 1500 years, as well as in the past history of the Mormon church and in current Mormon sects which allow for polygamy…

Many pray daily that closed minds like Warren’s are opened, that the scales will fall from the eyes of Pastor Rick and his ilk. But thinking that "they" are afraid is a wrong move. This type of Christian think they are right, and that (their) God is on their side. And there’s too much at stake in terms of worldly power and wealth to make a sudden sea change. But I do share Melissa’s view that:

…we are headed in the direction of marriage equality and equal protection for all families.

I just don’t share her views that Rick Warren could be a vehicle for that. But hey, if he gets Divine Revelation and sees the light–halla-freakin’-lujah!


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