Sunday, May 31, 2015

Makaila Ragan Takes A Stand

Makaila Ragan was coming by her mother’s workplace one day when she stumbled upon a couple of men on the street carrying signs condemning The Gays and, well, you know, burn in Hell … God hates you … did faggot … those kinds of sentiments.

So, she walked into her mother’s office and asked her mother, and her mother’s boss, if they minded if she made a sign and stood on the corner with the two men, and when they said ‘Yes’ she set about making her own protest sign:
I love gays.
And out to the curb she went, taking a spot on the sidewalk right next to the bigots, who, upon seeing her sign, began insulting Makaila:
“They were calling me names, and asking my mom questions, like, ‘How many times did you have to get an abortion before you were able to have your daughter?’ and saying, ‘You’re going to burn in hell right along with your daughter.’ The things they were saying were just awful, but I didn’t let them faze me.”
And it didn’t, because the longer she stood out there more and more people who agreed with Makaila came onto the sidewalk, carrying their own signs; some people even brought food, so the protesters didn’t have to leave to get a bite to eat, and others gave cash so they could buy themselves something to drink.

And then several local pastors showed up to protest alongside … Makaila … and to tell the two men that they do not represent all Christians and “that everyone is loved by God.”

 Makaila and her group decided they wouldn’t leave until the two men did, and so they stood on the corner of the busiest intersection in downtown Tillamook cheering with every honk of support or wave they received from passing motorists for over six hours; the two men finally left at 10:30PM and it was only then that Makaila and her group decided to go home also.

During the demonstration, several supporters launched the Tillamook for Love Facebook group, and hope to use it to keep their demonstration going … online and out in the world.

It wasn’t much that Makaila Ragan did; I mean, she could have been annoyed by the men and their signs and complained about it and then gone on with her day. But she didn’t; and other folks, who agreed with her, and disagree with hate could have simply waved and honked as they drove by, but they didn’t.

It isn’t worth it, sometimes, to complain and move on; sometimes you have to take a stand.

And a sign …

photos via Tillamook For Love and Romy Carter

Saturday, May 30, 2015

It's Snarkurday!

Y’all remember that last weekend Blister Palin was set to marry her war hero husband, Dakota Meyer, but called it off at the last minute when she found out her intended had already been married once before.

Blister tried to play it off like she knew about the First Missus War Hero, and said that even though there wouldn’t be a wedding, they would use the day as a Celebration of life ... um ... except Blister wasn’t into celebrating life and didn’t attend her own party.

Yup, Blister missed Mama Grizzly Bore’s™ Memorial Day barbecue because she spent the weekend in Alaska Instagramming pictures of herself to her fan. Obviously she did it to make damn sure everyone knew she was nowhere near Kentucky and her fiancé, and wants to keep up the charade that she called off the wedding, but that there were no hard feelings.

Except you stayed away from Palins and BBQ and booze. I mean, that’s a party brawl right? 

Okay, I don’t watch The Good Wife; yes, people say how great it is, but I don’t care I don’t watch it … bite me.

But I was reading about Archie Panjabi, who recently left her role of The Good Wife and is now co-starring in some disaster-epic-craptastic The Rock move about earthquakes that we’ve all seen a hundred times before. But that’s neither here nor there …

The story is that Panjabi and The Good Wife star Julianna Margulies — who allegedly forced Panjabi out because her character was very popular — finally filmed a scene together for Panjabi’s last episode, only they really didn’t … Many people thought the awkward scene had been achieved with stand-ins, green screens and CGI, and now a producer has basically confirmed all that by admitting that Panjabi and Margulies weren’t even in the same room at the same time.

Wow, that must have been some catfight to send one actress packing and to make it impossible to get the two women together on camera one last time. But I guess the green-screen, CGI scene probably helped Panjabi prepare for her role in that CGI-master-craptastic-piece San Andreas where, even when she was acting in a scene with Dwayne Johnson, it probably felt like she was talking to a cardboard cutout.

When last we left Real Housewife Kim Richards, she had been arrested at the Beverly Hills Hotel for being drunk and disorderly, which she followed up with a widely crazy appearance on “Dr.” Phil, at which time he tried to coerce her into rehab and she refused.

Eventually, Richards did decide to check into a facility — her fourth time in rehab at an unnamed facility — that is said to be similar to a Four Seasons, meaning mini-bars and room service, because she could come and go as she pleased, and leave for days on end to attend her daughter Brooke’s second wedding — to the same guy … the first go-round was filmed for the Real Housewives show — in Mexico.

Where she allegedly got drunk. Quelle surprise. She ALLEGEDLY drunkenly raged at her daughter Brooke, who is now also not speaking to her, cursed out the groom and his family, and so embarrassed her sober coach, who came along probably for the free trip and all the champagne she could snatch from Kim’s hand, that she got so pissed off she up and left.
And then Kim failed to return to rehab after her boozy weekend.

Lohan? This is you in 25 years honey.

I love Christina Aguilera. And I know she’s a raging diva, but that’s how I like my divas to roil. But maybe Christina has taken it too far because now it looks like she’ll be fired from The Voice because no one likes her.

A network insider — and it cannot be Lohan because of the words ‘network’ and ‘insider’ — says,  “No one wants Christina to come back as a judge on season nine of The Voice.”

Apparently Aguilera has angered everyone on the show with her antics this season including constantly being late to the show, and holding up production, and fighting with that other diva, Adam Levine. The source continues:

“She was really difficult to work with this season. Tensions between her and Adam were consistent, but she also just had a really bad attitude. She showed up late a lot, took forever for hair and makeup and was just very demanding.”

Well, to that I say, Duh. She’s.A.Diva! That’s what they do! And that’s how I like ‘em.

If you noticed, or cared, Katy Perry was noticeably absent from the Billboards Music Awards because, well, it was Swifty’s turn to win all of the awards.

Now, it appears that Perry was planning on going until her on-again-off-again-on-again boyfriend — and Swifty ex — John Mayer convinced her to stay home … to write a whole bunch of new songs trashing Taylor Swift based on stories that walking STD known as John Mayer told her.

Gosh, I miss high school and the mean girls and their whipped little boyfriends.


La County Prosecutor Terry White has confirmed that Lindsay Lohan has completed her oft-0delayed community service by working 8 hours a day … without a break mind you so forget those pictures of Lindsay standing outside the Brooklyn children’s center chain-smoking …to get the job done.

Yes, for the first time in seven years Lindsay Lohan is not on probation.

And how long will that last?

When last we left Johnny Depp he was Down under smuggling his tiny dogs into the country, until authorities told him to remove the pooches — Australia has a ten-day quarantine on animals entering the country — or else the dogs would be put down.

And Johnny did send the pooches home. But the story isn’t done because now people want to know how the Great Puppy Smuggling Incident of 2105 went down.

Apparently, a customs official checked the private jet before Johnny, the crew and the rest of the passengers got off so they’re wondering how he got them in. Perhaps wrapped up in those twelve-foot long scarves he wears? Or hiding in Johnny’s matted hair? Or maybe he gerbil'd ‘em? Just sayin’.

I kid but Australia is mad and, if they find out who hid the dogs, and how they got into Oz, the pilot of the private jet could also face up to 2 years in jail. In addition, if Depp is found to be the one who smuggled the dogs in, he may also get jail time … or be forced to take a bath at least.

Friday, May 29, 2015

A Letter from the Mother of a Gay Son

You know, with all that’s going on in the news, like the GOP still holding on to an outdated notion — if they ever read a poll they’d know this — that if they campaign on Hate The gays they’ll get elected, and with people and politicians who Hate The Gays lining up to support a Good Christian Boy who likes to diddle little girls and his sisters,, it’s can be hard out here for a queer.

But then I saw this letter, written fifteen years ago by one Sharon Underwood from White River Junction, in which she expresses her anger at those so-called Christians and hypocrites who inflicted pain on her gay son, and so many other gay sons and daughters, bisexual sons and daughters, trans sons and daughters.

I kinda needed to hear this today:
Many letters have been sent to the Valley News concerning the homosexual menace in Vermont. I am the mother of a gay son and I’ve taken enough from you good people.
I’m tired of your foolish rhetoric about the “homosexual agenda” and your allegations that accepting homosexuality is the same thing as advocating sex with children. You are cruel and ignorant. You have been robbing me of the joys of motherhood ever since my children were tiny.
My firstborn son started suffering at the hands of the moral little thugs from your moral, upright families from the time he was in the first grade. He was physically and verbally abused from first grade straight through high school because he was perceived to be gay.He never professed to be gay or had any association with anything gay, but he had the misfortune not to walk or have gestures like the other boys. He was called “fag” incessantly, starting when he was 6.
In high school, while your children were doing what kids that age should be doing, mine labored over a suicide note, drafting and redrafting it to be sure his family knew how much he loved them. My sobbing 17-year-old tore the heart out of me as he choked out that he just couldn’t bear to continue living any longer, that he didn’t want to be gay and that he couldn’t face a life without dignity.
You have the audacity to talk about protecting families and children from the homosexual menace, while you yourselves tear apart families and drive children to despair. I don’t know why my son is gay, but I do know that God didn’t put him, and millions like him, on this Earth to give you someone to abuse. God gave you brains so that you could think, and it’s about time you started doing that.
At the core of all your misguided beliefs is the belief that this could never happen to you, that there is some kind of subculture out there that people have chosen to join. The fact is that if it can happen to my family, it can happen to yours, and you won’t get to choose. Whether it is genetic or whether something occurs during a critical time of fetal development, I don’t know. I can only tell you with an absolute certainty that it is inborn.
If you want to tout your own morality, you’d best come up with something more substantive than your heterosexuality. You did nothing to earn it; it was given to you. If you disagree, I would be interested in hearing your story, because my own heterosexuality was a blessing I received with no effort whatsoever on my part. It is so woven into the very soul of me that nothing could ever change it. For those of you who reduce sexual orientation to a simple choice, a character issue, a bad habit or something that can be changed by a 10-step program, I’m puzzled. Are you saying that your own sexual orientation is nothing more than something you have chosen, that you could change it at will? If that’s not the case, then why would you suggest that someone else can?
A popular theme in your letters is that Vermont has been infiltrated by outsiders. Both sides of my family have lived in Vermont for generations. I am heart and soul a Vermonter, so I’ll thank you to stop saying that you are speaking for “true Vermonters.”
You invoke the memory of the brave people who have fought on the battlefield for this great country, saying that they didn’t give their lives so that the “homosexual agenda” could tear down the principles they died defending. My 83-year-old father fought in some of the most horrific battles of World War II, was wounded and awarded the Purple Heart.
He shakes his head in sadness at the life his grandson has had to live. He says he fought alongside homosexuals in those battles, that they did their part and bothered no one. One of his best friends in the service was gay, and he never knew it until the end, and when he did find out, it mattered not at all. That wasn’t the measure of the man.
You religious folk just can’t bear the thought that as my son emerges from the hell that was his childhood he might like to find a lifelong companion and have a measure of happiness. It offends your sensibilities that he should request the right to visit that companion in the hospital, to make medical decisions for him or to benefit from tax laws governing inheritance.
How dare he? you say. These outrageous requests would threaten the very existence of your family, would undermine the sanctity of marriage.
You use religion to abdicate your responsibility to be thinking human beings. There are vast numbers of religious people who find your attitudes repugnant. God is not for the privileged majority, and God knows my son has committed no sin.
The deep-thinking author of a letter to the April 12 Valley News who lectures about homosexual sin and tells us about “those of us who have been blessed with the benefits of a religious upbringing” asks: “What ever happened to the idea of striving . . . to be better human beings than we are?”
Indeed, sir, whatever happened to that?
Yeah, that about sums it up. Have a great weekend, y’all.
Photo by Jamiecat (Flickr/cc)

Minute Rave: Alec Mapa

Y’all remember the firestorm openly gay actor Russell Tovey created — at least in The Gay Community — when he said this:
“I feel like I could have been really effeminate, if I hadn’t gone to the school I went to. Where I felt like I had to toughen up. If I’d have been able to relax, prance around, sing in the street, I might be a different person now. I thank my dad for that, for not allowing me to go down that path,” 
Lotsa folks, myself included, saw this as a kind of self-loathing, and a putdown of gay men who may be effeminate, as though that makes them less, well, manly. But the best response ever to Tovey’s remarks came from actor-comedian Alec Mapa, a flamboyantly gay, out loud and proud actor you’ve no doubt seen on Desperate HousewivesUgly BettyRoseanneSeinfeld and Friends.
Mapa isn’t one to shy away from his flamboyant persona, but detractors … and we’re kinda lookin’ at you, Russell … better not confuse that for any sort of weakness.  He spoke up on behalf of effeminate gay men in response to Tovey’s comments and here’s his entire Facebook post:’
“He’s glad he’s not effeminate?
Well the feeling is mutual lady, I’m glad I’m not you.
I kind of feel like this is why I do what I do. Why I’m not just a homo, but A BIG ONE. Being an effeminate gay man still remains an unforgivable sin in our masculinity obsessed culture. I think about all the young sissy boys who return from school after being bullied and shamed day after day, perhaps returning home to the same treatment. I know because I was one of those kids. Was? I still am! I still get it in the neck for being who I am.
I’ve spoken to so many non gender conforming youth who have the same recognizable look of despair on their faces. All they need to hear is that they’re fine exactly the way they are. That there’s nothing wrong. That they haven’t killed anyone. That they’re worthy of love and acceptance, AS IS.
Perhaps if they heard that they’d stand up for themselves. Perhaps if they heard that they wouldn’t be four times as likely to commit suicide than their straight peers. Perhaps if we were all encouraged to love ourselves from the beginning we wouldn’t grow up to be gay men who treat other gay men like shit.
I’m in no way outraged by this. I’ve been hearing this since the day I could mince. It’s just disappointing. We experience so much discrimination from the outside world, wouldn’t it be great if we were kinder to each other in our own community? There are a billion reasons to feel actual shame and remorse. Being your authentic, fabulous, faggy self shouldn’t be one of them.
Alec Mapa
Professional Effeminate Homosexual for nearly 50 years.”
Brava, Alec, brava!

We’re all kinds of different people, and we should be made to feel any kind of shame from one of our own.

I Didn't Say It ...

Taye Diggs, who will be taking on the role of trans East German rock star Hedwig on Broadway in Hedwig and the Angry Inch, on letting his "inner homosexual" out:

I mean I went through a stage where I was a drag queen in high school in 10th and 11th grade. I experienced with homosexuality and ass play and so outside of that…I worked the streets…male prostitution — I’m kidding — [but] I have a flaming homosexual inside of me so I’m raring to let that out."

Oh Taye, you played me! I was thinking of you as a hot male prostitute, drag queen homosexual and that was almost too much.
Still, Taye Diggs; hot; hot; and hot.
Jon Stewart, on those “religious freedom” bills:

"It seems like gay marriage looms a lot larger in the minds of certain conservatives than it does in the Bible. And the only thing I would say is, don’t they sell cakes to sinners all the time? Adulterers? When you come in do you go 'I'd like a cake,' and they go 'Do you use the name of the Lord in vain?' How do you figure that out? It feels disingenuous."

Um, because it is; it’s homophobia and bigotry plain and simple, when you use your “Bible” to discriminate against one group of people, er, sinners, I’m guessing, while all the other sinners get a pass.
Cleve Jones, LGBT activist, marking Harvey Milk's 85th birthday:

"As I look back over the decades, I marvel at the progress our community has made in achieving our rights and know that Harvey would be proud. And as we wait for the Supreme Court’s decision on marriage equality, I know that Harvey would remind us that our struggle is not yet won — no matter what the court decides."

This will be a huge victory, no doubt, but we still I have gender inequality, workplace and housing discrimination, religious discrimination to fight against.
The war is not over, but we might be close to winning a big battle!
Karen Carter Peterson, Louisiana state senator, on Governor Bobby Jindal’s "religious freedom" executive order:

"We've heard him talk about how he feels about executive orders, but those are at the federal level. He don't like those. But today it's okay to just ignore the House and the clear rejection of something that's just not good for our state. He didn't even have the courage to testify before the House, but he wants to roll out a press release saying what he's going to do through executive action. But guess what he did have time to do? To start running commercial, not here in New Orleans, or Baton Rouge, or Monroe - he ran a religious freedom commercial in Iowa. Are you kidding me? Why don't you roll some commercials out on how to fix this nightmare that you've created right here in Louisiana? This is ridiculous.”

Bobby Jindal is just pandering and scheming and misrepresenting his own party, and his own state, for his own personal need to be president, which, let’s be queer, ain’t never gonna happen.
Evan Wolfson, head of Freedom To Marry, on Ireland’s vote for marriage equality:

"With a nationwide landslide in favor, Ireland now becomes the first country in the world to pass the freedom to marry by popular referendum, as well as the 21st nation and the 10th predominantly Catholic country in which same-sex couples can marry. … The global momentum for the freedom to marry reflects and reinforces the progress we are making here in the United States – and we look now to the Supreme Court to bring our country to national resolution, following Ireland’s good example." 

It’s time.
Frank Bruni, in the New York Times, on Catholics and same-sex marriage:

"Take a look at this list of countries: Belgium, Canada, Spain, Argentina, Portugal, Brazil, France, Uruguay, Luxembourg and Ireland. Name two things that they have in common. They don’t share a continent, obviously. Or a language. But in all of them, the Roman Catholic Church has more adherents, at least nominally, than any other religious denomination does. And all of them belong to the vanguard of 20 nations that have decided to make same-sex marriage legal."

That’s the part that amazes me most of all: that these predominantly Catholic countries are defying their churches and Pope Frankie and demanding LGBT equality.
And yet here in America lotsa gay folks can’t even get a wedding cake in places where it’s legal.
The march goes on.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Random Musings

I won’t bore you with all the details of our holiday weekend, except to say that, Oy, times have changed. It used to be, as Eddie Murphy once so famously, and badly, sang, ♫ ♪ party all the time ... party all the time ♪ ♫ but this Memorial Day weekend it went gloriously like this:

Saturday morning: cleaning out the planting beds along the front porch, and raking away any and all dried leaves or weeds upon which The Snake might be hiding. Then, after a few hours and a quick shower, it was groceries. On the way home we discussed what Carlos might be cooking for dinner—Saturday’s are his turn—and I could see he wasn’t into it so … no, I wasn’t gonna cook either … we went to one of our local, and favorite, Mexican restaurants for dinner and ice cold Negro Modelo. Yum!

Sunday: it was housecleaning and yard work, and mowing lawns and yard work and Carlos cooking dinner. Only, once again I could see he wasn’t into it, so I made a cold Potato and Arugula Salad, topped with Lemon Rosemary Salmon and a relish of Cucumber, Fresh Herbs, Tomato, Kalamata Olives and Feta Cheese … along with a pitcher of Margaritas. After dinner was all about relaxation, and watching Gone Girl OnDemand™ with Ben Affleck playing himself, smug and condescending, but Rosamond Pike was one scary bitch, and there was a flash of NPH butt, so, yeah, win-win.

Monday: clearing vines and overgrown shrubs along the fences; yes, more yard work. But the best part was seeing Carlos, knee-deep in vines and shrubs and dried leaves and thinking, “That’s where the snakes might hide.” Luckily, no slitherers. But we cleaned up the mess, trimmed a holly tree down from an incredible mass into something pretty and manageable, and the Carlos finally made one of his delicioso pastas for dinner … with more margaritas.

Like I said, who knew I would spend one of the best weekends ever doing yard work? Not me … but things change I guess and spending the weekend with my own personal Mexican Gardner, and Chef, well, was just what I needed.
Good news for Michael Sam … he’s finally gonna play football, though he’ll be playing for the Canadian Football League, and the Montreal Alouettes.

He was signed to a two-year deal, so congrats to him, as the first openly gay football player ever, who finally gets to do what he loves.
Okay, so the Hot Men Alert™ ...

First up, British actor Sam Reid, whom we caught in the movie Belle—which, thankfully wasn’t some Beauty and the Beast crap, but a British film based on a true story about a mixed race girl being raised by the parents of her white father in England, with a back story about slaving and slave ships. A good story, as are most British films for me, made all the better by Sam Reid.

We also watched a sci-fi/hacker/alien/Area 51 film called The Signal which was a good pick, made all the better by Brenton Thwaites, who has, at least in this film, a little Colin Farrell thing going on … and y’all know how I feel about Mr. Farrell.

On the Duggar front comes more hypocrisy … go figure.

Back in 2002, during his campaign for the US Senate, Jim Bob Duggar said that he thought incest should be punishable by death.

I guess that was before he knew there were incestuous things happening in his own house when his son would sneak into his sister’s rooms at night and molest them, and so he probably changed his mind about it later.


PS  Jim Bob lost the election, so there is that silver lining.
Okay, so we all know Gaga will be on American Horror Story: Hotel when it debuts in October, and I’m, well, fine with that — though I’ll miss Miss Lange.

Plus, we have Matt "My-Husband-In-My-Head” Bomer appearing next season so the hotness factor will be high.

Especially when you add in fellow openly gay actor-slash-hottie Cheyenne Jackson. Plus, we'll get Angela Bassett, Evan Peters, Sarah Paulson, Kathy Bates, Chloe Sevigny, and Wes Bentley — who’ve all appeared in seasons’ past.

But, another dreamboat has been signed on:

Max Greenfield, of Fox’s New Girl — a show I’ve never seen … Zooey Deschanel … I just can’t with her  but Max is hot, handsome, kinda nerd cute.

Sheesh, Matt, Cheyenne, Wes and Max — it’s a dark-haired dreamboat-fest!

Make room in the GOP Clown Car for a little Frothy Mix …

Yup, Rick Santorum, the former U.S. senator from Pennsylvania and failed Presidential candidate in 2012, not to mention anti-LGBT loon, has announced that he is once again vying for the White House.

Let the crazy begin … as in when he said on GMA that not only is he against any kind of immigration reform, but he wants less legal immigration into this country; he wants less of them coming here to live with us.

Now, I loathe Santorum, and think he’s the lowest of the low, but I will give him credit because, when he was asked about this Duggar business — Josh Duggar supported him for president — Santorum became the first GOP candidate for president, and one of the few republicans in general, to say he was sickened by what happened and that his concern was only for the girls.

So, yeah, he gets minor props for that, though he’ll never be president.
And, joining him in the GOP Clown Car is Republican George Pataki, who served as Governor of New York from 1995-2006.

In announcing his bid, he made sure to tout his leadership during the September 11 attacks.

Yes, vote for Pataki because fourteen years ago he did something good.

Um, but, as Janet Jackson might say, Mr. Pataki, ♫ ♪ what have you done for me lately ♪ ♫?

Maybe the rains have washed away the bigots in Texas because just yesterday an anti-gay marriage amendment finally died in the Texas Senate, joining more than 20 other pieces of anti-LGBT legislation that failed to pass this year. 

The Texas GOP, knowing that they don’t have time to take up the amendment hastily introduced a non-binding resolution in opposition to marriage equality … which is basically just a letter saying We hate gays.

Oh Texas … 

Reverend Warren Hall Comes Out

The Reverend Warren Hall, who worked at Seton Hall University until he posted an image of himself with the NOH8 logo on his cheek to his Facebook page and was fired by Archbishop John Myers, has another announcement:

He’s gay.
“I have to be myself. I can’t worry what other people think.”
Hall believes another priest saw the image on Hall’s personal Facebook page ... Hall says it was a response to a lecture on bullying and hate ... and alerted university and archdiocesan officials; Hall says he was called in to explain the post, first by the university and then by the archdiocese, and agreed to delete it from his page. He thought that would be the end of it, but then five months later he was fired from the school by Archbishop Myers, who told him:
“None of us want bullying, but you have a further agenda here, and I can’t have you at Seton Hall because of that.”
The Reverend Hall said that in the past year a few people had learned of his sexual orientation but now, especially in light of his dismissal, he wanted to be completely open:
“The best way to live is to live honestly. Honesty with oneself is the most important thing, but you have to be honest with other people. I’m not afraid of those questions anymore.”
Welcome out, Father, welcome out. And please accept as our gift to you, from HOMO HQ, a copy of The Gay Agenda and the Obligatory Coming Out Toaster Oven.

And, again, Welcome out.
Huffington Post