Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Another One: Lexi Lopez-Brandies

I’ve been holding on to this story for over a week now. I didn’t want to post it before Christmas, and then I didn’t want to wait until the first of the New Year. But the fact is that these stories must be told because they’re still happening; we’re still wringing our hands and asking ‘What can we do?’

Alexis “Lexi” Lopez-Brandies, a 14-year-old freshman at Horlick Senior High School in Racine, Wisconsin, committed suicide just before Christmas.

A vigil was held last week in her memory, with nearly 200 mourners gathered outside her home carrying candles; the vigil was organized by both the Gay-Straight Alliance [GSA] and the Youth Empowered in the Struggle [YES!], a group for Latino students and friends.
“She was such a beautiful person and I wish everybody could have met (her) because she really did turn everybody’s life around in a positive manner.”—Michael Dollaka-Posch, a friend
Lexi’s friends and family believe she was the victim of bullying which lead to her taking her own life, saying she was verbally attacked at school and on social media.

Stacy Tapp, a spokesperson for the Racine School District, says officials are working with the GSA and YES! to come up with an effective program to address bullying, and to address issues confronting students who identify as LGBTQ, and while I applaud that, in a way, I’m tired of schools and school officials saying things like “we’re working on it.”

Here’s how it’s done: bullying is not acceptable behavior; ever. You bully someone; you’re out. The victims of the bullies aren’t punished; they aren’t told to stop “acting gay”; they aren’t told how they need to adapt; if you bully someone, you’re out. Even if you’re a teacher or a coach or another parent. You call it Zero Tolerance and you mean it. Zero bullying.

Work done.

And then maybe we won’t have Another One.

Monday, December 30, 2013

ISBL Asshat of the Week: Georgia Congressman Jack Kingston

It seems that most politicians today have a model upon which they base their candidacy and that seems fair; you take a look at what’s worked in the past for other politicians and then you follow that lead.

Trouble is, the one person’s lead you should never follow is Newt Gingrich.

Back in November 2011, the serial adulterer and former House Speaker received a fair amount of criticism when he suggested that schools in low-income neighborhoods fire their janitorial staffs and have those low-income family children clean the schools instead:
"You say to somebody, you shouldn't go to work before you're what, 14, 16 years of age, fine. You're totally poor. You're in a school that is failing with a teacher that is failing. I've tried for years to have a very simple model. Most of these schools ought to get rid of the unionized janitors, have one master janitor and pay local students to take care of the school. The kids would actually do the work, they would have cash, they would have pride in the schools, they'd begin the process of rising."
Yeah, he did, and he was soundly drummed over the head because of his views. Get those poor kids outta bed and have ‘;em mop the halls and dump the trash and sweep the floors and then go to school all day and when they’re done, have them wash windows and scrub toilets and clean urinals.

Who in their right mind would use Newt Gingrich as a role model?

Fellow Georgian and Congressman Jack Kingston for one. But he doesn’t want the poor kids cleaning schools for no reason; he wants them to clean the schools so they can pay for their lunch and is set to propose a new law that low-income children do some manual labor in exchange for their subsidized meals. Under the meal program, children from families with incomes at or below 130 percent of the poverty line are eligible for free meals, while students from families with incomes between 130 percent and 185 percent of the poverty level can receive lunches at reduced prices.

Kingston is saying “No lunch for you!”

He says children, at least those poor ones that won’t amount to anything anyway, should have to pay at least a nominal amount or do some work like sweeping cafeteria floors:
"But one of the things I’ve talked to the secretary of agriculture about: Why don’t you have the kids pay a dime, pay a nickel to instill in them that there is, in fact, no such thing as a free lunch? Or maybe sweep the floor of the cafeteria -- and yes, I understand that that would be an administrative problem, and I understand that it would probably lose you money. But think what we would gain as a society in getting people -- getting the myth out of their head that there is such a thing as a free lunch."
He doesn’t seem to realize that he’s punishing the children for something out of their control: family income. And even more, he doesn’t seem to understand that he is creating a world of embarrassment for those students who have to sweep before eating while the kids from the wealthier families simply  sit and have a nice lunch.

And now the school lunch has hit the fan and Kingston’s ‘people’ are scrambling; Kingston spokesman Chris Crawford, doing damage control:
"It is sad that trying to have a productive conversation about instilling a strong work ethic in the next generation of Americans so quickly devolves into the usual name-calling partisan hysteria. Having worked from a young age himself, Congressman Kingston understands the value of hard work and the important role it plays in shaping young people."
There’s something to be said about working from a young age to instill a sense of pride in yourself, to see that hard work pays off, to realize that you can take care of yourself and buy yourself the things you want and need because you work.

Telling school children they have to clean the cafeteria before they can have lunch is not the same thing.

The good news is that Jack Kingston will probably be out of a job soon; he is running against seven other Republicans in the 2014 primary to replace retiring Senator Saxby Chambliss, and the expected winner of that race will face Democrat Michelle Nunn, who probably thinks kids should be in school to learn, not clean up.

WTF? Juliette Binoche

Juliette Binoche. Oh, hell no.

This looks like some raggedy tie-dyed looking mother-effer that was put through the blender and not the washer.

And then it got pissed off at all the abuse and is now trying to climb up your neck to strangle you.

Robin Roberts Comes Out

I have long admired Robin Roberts. I always found her compassionate in her reporting and down-to-earth in her role as anchor of Good Morning America. She shared her breast cancer diagnosis with the world, and last year, when she was diagnosed with Myelodysplastic syndrome, I loved how open she was in sharing her story so that others might understand the disease. And, as a fellow Gay, I vividly remember her interview last year with President Obama in which he announced his support for marriage equality, finally becoming the fierce ally I’d hoped him to be.

But this is about Robin, and now I love and admire her even more. In a recent Facebook post to thank everyone who supported her and inspired her during the last couple of years, Roberts has come out, officially, as gay:
Flashback 12/29/12....
Hard to believe this was 1 year ago today..when I reached a critical milestone of 100 days post transplant...and KJ was finally allowed to come back home.
Reading this comforts me and I hope the same for you: "If you are depressed, you are living in the past. If you are anxious, you are living in the future. If you are at peace, you are living in the present."
At this moment I am at peace and filled with joy and gratitude.
I am grateful to God, my doctors and nurses for my restored good health.
I am grateful for my sister, Sally-Ann, for being my donor and giving me the gift of life.
I am grateful for my entire family, my long time girlfriend, Amber, and friends as we prepare to celebrate a glorious new year together.
I am grateful for the many prayers and well wishes for my recovery. I return every one of them to you 100 fold.
On this last Sunday of 2013 I encourage you to reflect on what you are grateful for too.
Wishing you a Healthy and Happy New Year.
Peace, love, and blessings to all ... XO
Welcome Out Robin, and, well, even though it seems that you and Amber Laign have been in a long — ten years and going — relationship, we here at HOMO HQ would like you to have a copy of The Gay Agenda and the Obligatory Coming Out Toaster Oven.

I’m sure after all your health issues and struggles of the past couple of years though, the simple act of coming out publicly was a cake walk.

Welcome Out, Robin, welcome out.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

I Ain't One To Gossip But ...

I, like most rational human beings, live in fear of Anna Wintour. I heard she’s had women killed for wearing white after Labor Day; she once had a model’s feet removed because she was wearing a wedge when wedges were out; she hates Kim Kardashian — okay, that’s kinda sweet actually — but she is also the one who ALLEGEDLY told Oprah to lose weight before she’d put her on the cover of Vogue; and Oprah did it. And once, on 60 Minutes, she described a trip to Minnesota like this:
I’d just been on a trip to Minnesota, where I can only kindly describe most of the people I saw as little houses.”
So, yeah, live in fear. But, imagine being her daughter? I know! Scary, right?

Wintour has two grown children—Charles and Bee—from her marriage to child psychiatrist David Shaffer, which ended in 1999. Charles lives in Minnesota, which must be why Mom went there and was horrified by the fat people, while Bee works as a segment producer for Seth Myers.

Anyway Bee recently Instagrammed photos of some bags and presents sitting on the floor with the caption:
My mom threw out our tree before Christmas Day because ‘it was too messy’
Like I said, live in fear, Anna Wintour can stop Christmas.
And speaking of Christmas ….

Justin Bieber’s latest documentary, Believe, was released in theaters and apparently he spends most of the time bemoaning how mean folks are to him because he spits on fans, pisses in mop buckets, bangs Brazilian hookers , drives like a lunatic and is high about 98% of the time.

So, on Christmas Day Miss Justine had just had it, and she Tweeted out the following message:
This is the best Christmas present EVER!

Except she’s joking, and just trying to make a play for sympathy. Or she was high as a kite and one of her handlers let her out of her room and near the internet.
Lindsay Lohan is writing a book y’all. I know, I’d be more surprised, too, if she’d read a book first but you can’t have everything.

Still, it seems the book will be a tell-all about Lindsay life and multiple arrests and fights and convictions and prison terms and rehab stays and her parents aren’t keen on the idea ... because they’re afraid they’ll come off looking bad.

Michael Lohan is already threatening to sue, not Lindsay, but Dina, because he says the book will be used by Dina to circumvent the terms of their divorce in that she not talk about him. So, his lawyer just sent a threatening letter to Dina, reminding her about the gag order which was imposed in their divorce:
”The wife shall not, directly or indirectly, publish, or cause to be published, any diary, memoir, letter, story” blibbety blah blay blue shut up! 
Wow, his daughter wants to talk about her issues with drugs and pills and cars and catfights and bad movies and rehab and arrests and court dates and lesbian flings and Michael thinks it’s gonna be about him?

Oh hell no.

Ain’t nobody got time to read that.
So, once again people are calling Britney Spears as dumb as a box of rocks.

Remember when her X Factor cohorts Simon Cowell and Adrienne Bailon confirmed that BritBrit was too dumb to function on the show? They said she had to have her remarks written down before she could speak?

Then, Good Morning America and Australia’s The Roula & Ryan Show basically said the same thing about Brit because they had to submit all their questions in advance, ask them on air in the same order, and not deviate at all from the “script” lest Brit get confused.

Chicago Tribune entertainment writer Luis Gomez asked a handful of colleagues to name their “least favorite interview of 2013″.

Jamar ‘J Niice’ McNeil of Chicago’s B96 The J Show:
“Least favorite interview this year was Britney Spears. She was not at all interested in her own new album, her new single or her Vegas residency show. She wasn’t interested in the interview. Why’d her label make her do this? Waste. I would’ve rather spent that time with a corpse. No, like really. A corpse ‘of gasses,’ might twitch, decomposes, bloats — pretty interesting stuff. Britney Spears? Two words: Nothing there.”
Christopher ‘Brotha Fred’ Frederick of 103.5 Kiss FM’s Fred + Angi In The Morning:
“While I wouldn’t say it was my least favorite, as we are always happy to talk to Britney Spears, she just seemed disconnected. It was difficult to get more than a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ from her. But she did tell us she ‘never’ lip-syncs, and that surprised more than just us as it made national news.”
Michelle ‘Showbiz Shelly’ Menaker also of B96′s The J Show:
“The worst interview of the year had to be Britney Spears. While she has catchy songs and cool music videos, it was almost a struggle for her to form a sentence. She might have been nervous, but it was tough for her to elaborate on things as simple as her new Vegas Show.” 

Honey she lip-syncs interviews.
Mariah Carey has finally divulged the biggest regret of her career and it wasn’t sitting with Nikki on American Idol or performing for dictators and collecting massive paychecks:
Honestly, it was always Glitter because I didn’t have somebody in control. I really needed a Hollywood legend to be in control. It was called the “G” word, we couldn’t bring it up … it was a horrible couple of years, but I had to get my momentum back for people to let it go.”
She may have called it ‘G’ while I heard it was more ‘WTF.’
Jennifer Lawrence, honey, I’m kinda getting’ tired of you.

First she used to love The Fashion police because nearly every week she made their Best Dressed list. But one time she was on the Fash-hole List and suddenly JLaw began saying what a hateful show it was and how demeaning to women it was; I guess by ‘women’ she meant her.

But listen to this quote from JLaw about how Jack Nicholson — who ALLEGEDLY hit on her after she won her Oscar — followed up his come-on with a gift:
“He’s sent me flowers and a bottle of Cristal and a note that said ‘Missing you already.’ Not to brag. I should’ve probably kept that a secret so it could just be between me and Jack.”
Yes, not to brag, and yet you did. It seems JLaw has mastered the fine art of the HumbleBrag.
So Kate Winslet and husband number three, the inexplicably named Ned Rocknroll recently had a baby and they named him …


I’m wondering if Winslet is hoping her son will grow up to have a successful career as a gay porn star confined to a specific genre.

Oh, and his name is Bear Winslet, because Bear Rocknroll would be dumb.
Kanye West has a new enemy and her name is Katy Perry.

I’d pay to see that catfight, just to watch Kim and John Mayor purse their lips and pose from the sidelines.

It seems that Katy is comparing the recent music video she and her douche boyfriend John Mayor released to the completely insane music video for Bound 2 that Kim and Kanye Kartooned.

While appearing on  The Ellen DeGeneres Show and asked if her and Mayer’s video was a response to Bound 2, Katy joked:

 “Yes. I thought our response was a little bit more authentic because my hair was blowing in the right direction, though . . .”

Ellen concurred, “She was facing backwards, right? So her hair should have been [blowing the other direction].”

Well, maybe so, but I’ve heard Kim blows in all directions.
And speaking of Kimye .... what's the deal with this picture?

I mean, it's damn near impossible to tell which one is the drag queen and which one is the gay man.

Friday, December 27, 2013

I Didn't Say It ....

Robbie Rogers, LA Galaxy openly gay soccer player, says no gay players have reached out to him:
"I've received phone calls and I've spoken with all my friends here in the UK and around the world that have supported me, but I haven't had one message from a [gay] footballer. It reminds me of the fear that I had - you remember that atmosphere and how it made you feel. It just shows there's a huge problem. What do you do to change that, do you try to support them to create an environment that would support them to come out and they would feel comfortable in? It's really tough."

Juts shows that we still have much more work to do towards acceptance and tolerance and understanding.
Rachel Maddow, on the  federal court ruling striking down Utah's same-sex marriage ban.
"And so the ruling came down surprising everyone by 2:00 in Utah. And by 3:00 people were marrying in that state!...Does this Utah decision today just feel like it's a different decision than all the others because - forgive me - it's freaking Utah! Or is the fact that this is a federal court ruling - does that mean that this is just more than the next step - that this could be a harbinger that anti-gay laws around the country are more done than we thought they were?"

I think she’s right.
My first thought, too, was U-freaking-tah!
Gary Herbert, Utah governor, expressing his dismay and vowing to continue the fight to protect traditional marriage:
"I am very disappointed an activist federal judge is attempting to override the will of the people of Utah. I am working with my legal counsel and the acting Attorney General to determine the best course to defend traditional marriage within the borders of Utah."

Um, Gary, we don’t let the majority rules on the Civil Rights of the minority in this country where all men, gay and straight, are created equal.
Annise Parker, openly gay Houston mayor, on  Robertson and the controversy surrounding his anti-gay comments and suspension from Duck Dynasty.
"I have never watched 'Duck Dynasty,' so I don't think about it much at all. I've been a gay community activist since the mid-70s. It was a very different time. We were fighting to keep people out of jails and mental hospitals. What some redneck wingnut has to say about the GLBT community is completely irrelevant."

And, like Robertson, who has the right to his opinion, Parker has the right to hers.
And I agree with her.
Seth Anderson [right] who was legally married to Michael Ferguson last week in Utah:
"Today, December 23, Republican Governor Gary Herbert has declared the State of Utah will go before a judge to 'defend traditional marriage within the borders of Utah.' I don’t know how he can say that as a Utahan and as a Mormon. Traditional marriage in Utah is non-traditional. How delightfully ironic that today, December 23, Mormons will remember the birthday of Joseph Smith, the founder of the Mormon Church, a man who had 34 wives, 1/3 of whom married Joseph while simultaneously married to other men and 1/3 of whom were under the age of 20. The founder of Salt Lake City and colonizer of Utah, Brigham Young, had 55 wives and 34 children. 21 of his wives had never been married, 16 were widows, 6 were divorced, and 6 had living husbands."

Doesn’t sound like Utah really has a stake in so-called one-man-one-woman marriage.
Mama Grizzly Bore™, supporting Duck Dynasty's Phil Robertson and trotting out the “unnamed” gay friend stance:
"In fact, a friend of mine who happens to be gay, she emailed me to say she is outraged at A&E for the hypocrisy here, for the things that they air on their program that she finds offensive, yet A&E doesn't fire a star or somebody involved in their programming based on what they said but they would  when it comes to Phil on Duck Dynasty and this friend, she said that she would boycott A&E and that network, and uh, um, she's not the only one."

First off, if you’re gonna be a spokesman, learn to speak. This rambling, incoherent, cracked out mess of a statement makes no sense.
And for the love of the goddess, quit saying “my gay friend” because if you really had a gay friend who really supported Robertson you’d be sayin’ her name and winkin’ and smilin’ and aw shuckin’ yer ass all over town.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Random Musings

Well, well, well, another Christmas come and gone.

While Carlos and I did not exchange gifts -- except for the flu he gave me and the dirty looks I gave him -- because we're remodeling a bathroom as a Christmas gift, it was still a nice day.
Mellow and sleepy with one pleasant surprise right at the very end.

Last night, for the first time in many nights, i slept all the way through with no coughing jags and sneezing fits and bathroom runs and no Carlos snoring.

I'm feeling better ... in time to go back to work tomorrow.

Feliz Navidad my culo.

Enough of this talk about Climate Change; that's just a hoax.

The fact that is was 80 degrees in Smallville the Saturday before Christmas means nothing except that I had a Summer Cold , because on Christmas it was just 35-degrees and suddenly it was a Winter Cold.

Uh huh.
Look, I get me some Facebook; I’m on Facebook. I get some of my news from there and keep in contact with my Left Coast friends and family. But what I don’t do is let everyone know what I’m doing at every single minute of every single day…
Sitting down to chicken soup!
Off to bed. Night all.
Watching the _____ game! Go team!
Are you really enjoying the moment or are you just enjoying updating the moment to your status?
I don’t eat fast food; it’s just not my thing. But if I were a diner at a fast food establishment, I doubt I would be eating at McDonald’s.

An official from McDonald's Corporation announced at a Chicago Sports Commission luncheon last week that the company would not make a statement about anti-gay laws implemented in Russia:
"If we as a sponsor, or any sponsor, were to pull [out of their deal] or boycott, we'd be hurting the U.S. Olympic team. Our mission really is to make sure that we do not penalize the U.S. athletes. The [U.S. Olympic Committee] is not going to boycott, so we're not going to subjugate that by not supporting athletes."
No said boycott, they asked you to make a statement regarding the hateful anti-gay laws in Russia and you said ...


That same official then added,  "We try to keep the politics out of it and try to focus on sport."

And making money.
There’s nothing like a good Christmas movie on Christmas Eve to get ready for the big day … which is why we watched Frances, the story of 30s actress Frances Farmer and her descent into alcohol and drug addiction, and mental instability, ending up being raped in hospitals in exchange for money and then undergoing a lobotomy.

Good Christmas fare, no?

Well, it starred the great Jessica Lange and was really a good film.

Just sayin’.
Where does a single unwed mother with barely a high school education who made a name for herself dancing on TV and selling her private life to a reality channel get a pulpit.

Yes, Blister Palin, demon spawn of the Mama Grizzly Bore™ is speaking out, and throwing her considerable heft, behind bigot and homophobe, Duck Dynasty’s Phil Robertson, saying:
“[I]f you don’t agree with their lifestyle, they spread the most hate. It is so hypocritical it makes my stomach turn. They need to learn how to respect others’ opinions and not just jump to the conclusion that everyone who doesn’t support homosexuality and gay marriage is homophobic.”
This is what Robertson said about The Gays:
“They’re full of murder, envy, strife, hatred. They are insolent, arrogant, God-haters. They are heartless, they are faithless, they are senseless, they are ruthless. They invent ways of doing evil.”
And yet I am a hater because I question his statements?

Blister? Can’t you find another Alaskan unemployed hockey monkey to knock you up so you’ll go away again?
Glee’s Dot-Marie Jones, AKA Coach Shannon Beiste, married her longtime girlfriend Bridgett Casteen at their Los Angeles home last weekend.

Close friends had been invited to a holiday party at the couple's home, but Jones and Casteen surprised their guests by informing them that they were actually gathered together for a wedding.

Loverly. And congrats to the happy couple!
Since we were sick over the holidays there was a lot of movie watching — as in the Christmas Eve Frances Film — and one more we watched was Jason Segal and Emily Blunt in The Five Year Engagement.

Good movie, but I had no idea it would be told in real time.

Seriously. It seemed that long.
Filed under Finally:

This week the British government granted a royal pardon to Alan Turing, the computer genius who committed suicide after being chemically castrated following a conviction for homosexuality.

Turing, who played a major role in breaking the Enigma code – which arguably shortened the war by at least two years – was pardoned under the Royal Prerogative of Mercy by the Queen, following a request from the justice secretary, Chris Grayling.

Like I said, Finally!