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February 2007

Venus Becomes Penis

Venus Venus magazine, a publication out of Chicago that targeted the Black gay and lesbian community is changing. Completely. Its publisher, Charlene Cothran, recently announced that she has been “redeemed”; is no longer a lesbian; and is changing the mission and direction of the magazine.
The mission of Venus Magazine has, of course, completely changed to one that will “encourage, educate and assist those who desire to leave a life of homosexuality.” Publisher Cothan: “But now, I must come out of the closet again. I have recently experienced the power of change that came over me once I completely surrendered to the teachings of Jesus Christ. As a believe of the word of God, I fully accept and have always known that same-sex relationships are not what God intended for us.”
As for readers of Venus Magazine, according to Cothran, only six have cancelled their subscriptions so far. In just one day last week, four online readers unsubscribed. According to Cothran, there hasn’t been a mass drop-off of readers; moreover, she said that she’s gaining subscribers in the form of parents of gay and lesbian children, and others.


When Words Hurt

CNN weighed in recently on the use of the "N" and "F" words as slurs that offend minorities. What becomes irrevocably clear is that the discussion is in vogue (due in part to Gibson, Richards and Washington) and everyone has an opinion. One guest, Joe Solmonese, President of the Human Rights Campaign, suggests we look at the motivation behind the words. Which is certainly true. As all the guests mention, especially the fabulous attorney, Lauren Lake, the words are shrouded in confusion, because it really depends on who is using the words. If you’re of the minority, you have free pass to use the word anytime with impunity. So as gay men, we can call each other queen, dyke, flamer, light-in-the-loafers, etc. A recent DVD release, Haven, from the producers of Crash, about life, gangster’s and love in the Cayman Islands, has islanders freely tossing bout the “N” word, because, of course, they are of that minority. Rap music is also ripe with slang, slurs and seemingly offensive words, conjuring up the new musical terms, explicit and clean, to describe whether or not the song contains those offensive words. There are now organizations, like banthenword.com and banthefword.com that call for a prohibition of these words. Throughout history, words have been censored. Shakespeare’s plays contained an enormous amount of language that some deemed undesirable, and they were struck from the plays. In a free, democratic society, one of the cherished rights is the freedom of speech and opinion without punishment. Defamation and hate speech are considered outside the bounds of these freedoms and are determined by laws and morals of the population. The “N” and “F” word certainly fall into that category, depending again, on who is the author.  And therein lies the real confusion for young people, who listen, watch and live in a culture of mixed messages. Banning words will never work; it only serves to make them deliciously forbidden, such as the word fuck. Intent, as Mr. Solmonese points out is as much about the message as it is the messenger. If words harm, as they often do, do we attempt to banish them from the vocabulary, or do we instruct and enlighten the public as to their meaning, in all their shades of gray? It would seem that we all must take responsibility and do our part to clean our own tongues of the words that cause sorrow. When minorities themselves, as the great poet Leonard Cohen once said, “tarnish the golden rule” then, maybe then, we can all speak freely.


A New Attitude?

153_covbig Pinknews.co.uk is reporting that there will be a new Attitude. After weeks of speculation, a MySpace posting announced that the magazine would be back on the newsstands this Friday. Only last week one staff member was reported to have said, "We're in the dark about what's happening while the management waits for investment."  As to where the funds came from, no one at this point knows. Maybe Sir Elton chipped in.
The MySpace posting says: "The best gay magazine in the world! We're back, back, back baby.

"With a bang! The February issue features a naked McFly, a pissed off Diana Ross and a world exclusive as Kele Okereke of Bloc Party discusses his sexuality. Plus boys, boys, boys."


James Spader in Drag

3x13bellaalan100Boston Legal added a second character in drag on last nights episode, "Dumping Bella", in the shape of James Spader doing Candice Bergen. The episode, directed by actor/director Eric Stolz, had the law firm participating in an office costume party, where they were asked to come as someone they admire. Denny Crane chose Dick Cheney, Shirley Schmidt came as Diane Sawyer and Alan Shore came as Shirley Schmidt. The other character usually in drag, Clarence (Gary Anthony Williams) came as Oprah (Ms. Cannick would  approve!) Spader looked sensational and entirely believable, even to point, the in usual series denouement, Denny Crane and Alan Shore waltzed through "As Time Goes By" as sung by that wonderful singer Jimmy Durante.


Mix Brasil

Sunga_f_1 While there is no shortage of homo erotic imagery on the net, mixbrasil.uol.com, compiles a vast array of photographs, illustrations and writings appealing to gay men. Created in 1993, Mix Brasil is written in Portuquese and requires translation tools to be read in English (Google's language translation tool, for instance). Translations are always suspect and often endearing as in this passage: "Mix Brazil is an organization created in 1993 with the objective to establish one fórum of quarrels for a group of people who we call (gays, lesbians and sympathetical)."

What will require no translation is the bounty of images both past and present.


Now Casting

Logo_orange here! The gay television network has announced plans to develop a new original film, “The Way Out” in association with David Duchovny and Mythgarden, a production company run by Chad Allen, Robert Gant, Christopher Racster, and Craig Doughtery.
“The Way Out” is scripted by Jordan Budde (Northern Exposure, Beverly Hills 90210)  and is based on an original idea from David Duchovny. The film delves into the little-explored world of the elderly gay community.
The Way Out
centers on Dalt Farrington, a 75-year-old East Texan forced to move into a retirement home after a failed suicide attempt. Having lost his partner of 35 years and the home they shared, Dalt heads to the rest home determined to keep to himself. Once there, however, he meets the handsome and vibrant Charlie Lomax, with whom he begins a romantic relationship. They are soon forced back into the closet as they face discrimination from the staff and other residents.
"This project falls squarely into here!'s mandate to provide authentic images of our community. Gay seniors and important issues they face have received little visibility from the media – we intend to help change that with this project," says Meredith Kadlec, here!'s Vice President of Original Programming.
Dates and casting have yet to be released.


Twist & Shout

Twistlogo "Twist Revolutions" is the initial album of new music and emerging artists from the U.S. music industry's first lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender label.
"Twist Revolutions" will serve as a launching pad for "some of the most vital and important new voices in the gay community," Music With A Twist/Columbia Records said in a news release Monday.
The collection, with tracks by The Gossip, Sara Bettens, Adam Joseph and Levi Kreis, among others, is scheduled for an April 17 release.
Music With A Twist, which launched in 2006, is a joint venture between Sony Music Label Group and Columbia Records. It is the first major record label dedicated to identifying and developing lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender artists along with creating innovative music compilations with a gay "twist," the company said.


Raining on their parade

051210_overseasrussia_vlwidec Moscow Mayor Yury Luzhkov vowed today that there would be no gay parades in his city, calling the events, "satanic". Activists said they would defy the ban and hold the cities first gay rights parade.
"Last year, Moscow came under unprecedented pressure to sanction the gay parade, which can be described in no other way than as satanic," he said to applause in comments broadcast on a city-controlled TV channel. "We did not let the parade take place then, and we are not going to allow it in the future."
Gay activists said they would take the ban to the European Court for Human Rights, "trying to silence us, the Russian authorities denied us one of the fundamental human rights. The European justice will have the last say in this case," activist and parade organizer Nikolai Alexeyev said in a statement. More information is at gayrussia.ru, in Russian and English.


The Cutting Edge of Art

Ronxx8 The art issue of West, the Los Angeles Times Sunday Magazine featured a piece on performance artist, Ron Athey by Kateri Butler.
Athey's art, which many find repulsive, is a combination of theater and self-abuse. Most notably, a performance in 1994 at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, which in part was funded by the National Endowment for the Arts, led to a Republican Inquisition and a nearly complete meltdown of funding for arts in America.
An excerpt from the article:
"Ron is fearless in his work. The only true darkness is that which comes out of the hidden and misunderstood. He doesn't flinch. Oh, but I do. Especially when I see him the day after a performance, blotches of yellow and purple where hooks had pulled his face into a garish mask, or barely formed scabs where he had cut himself. I admit I'm one of those people who shivers and turns away during such scenes—yet one of the most powerful parts of a Ron Athey performance is the collective physical reaction that sizzles through the audience when he impales himself on a Judas cradle, say, or teases a rope of pearls out of his ass. Which is critically acclaimed, by the way. "Ron Athey's asshole," Amelia Jones declares in the spring issue of TDR: The Drama Review, "has its own place in the history of contemporary performance art."


Anderson Cooper: A Dish

Ever since the election, Fox News and other "right wing" media have been hard-pressed to come up with topics that engage their particular audience in the face of the fact that most Americans are simply tired of Republicans. We have seen stories on Hillary's video, in which flowers were in bloom, suggesting something, and now, we have this devilish dish on Anderson Cooper. It's curious to see so-called news people so openly jealous and venting their wrath so freely.


Publish

0786428074 A new book has been published called, Documenting Gay Men Identity and Performance in Reality Television and Documentary Film by Christopher Pullen from McFarland.
From the publisher: This book charts an evolution in gay identity within American reality television and documentary film. Through focusing on the performative potential of gay men, it examines the emergence of the independent gay citizen as a bold new voice rejecting subjugation within the media. Through examining productions as diverse as An American Family, Tongues United, Silverlake Life, The Real World, Paternal Instinct, Trembling Before G-D, Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, and many others, this book explores how gay people as teens, devoted couples, parents, inspiring individuals and influential producers have contributed to the progression of gay identity in domestic arenas. These portrayals are played out while discussing AIDS, race, religion, the development of same-sex family forms, the issues of procreation and gay marriage and the changing views of gay men as both creative producers and responsible social agents. In these forms of entertainment, gay social actors as political agents challenge dominant ideas, and invent new social worlds.


Friends of God?

Picture_3_1 Friends of God, the Alexandra Pelosi documentary about the religious right, has aired, and not unexpectedly, with controversy. Fox Televisions Bill O' Reilly claimed the documentary was about the "battle between the "militant left and militant Christians". Claiming that Pelosi simply followed people around for months and found things that looked bad, he said: "Anybody can do that. I can film S-Ps in an S&M bar". Okay. Having seen the documentary, it seems both insightful and frightening, and yet, if we are to understand the religious right, it is necessary to explore what motivates and compels their often-militant behavior. Pelosi, in what can only be considered the hand of God intervening, interviews disgraced Reverend Ted Haggard, who in a point blank close-up, speaks to the camera about honesty and Christian morals. Of course, Ted, only a year later would resign, as it is revealed that he has been having homosexual sex and taking drugs.

But the most frightening segment  (and there are many) is the interview and footage with pastor Ron Luce, founder of Battle Cry, a concert tour for teens. Just the name, Battle Cry, should give us a clue. The concerts, which feature rock bands, pyrotechnics and calls to Christian action, are particularly insidious as they tap into teen angst and energy. With a rock-starish concert quality, they suck you in. The narcotic-like haze of bliss should look familiar, it is the same energized stupor one sees on young militant Muslims. Instead of stony camps, it is surreal arenas full of light, sound and fury.

The real horror of Friends of God and religious superiority in general is that the ranks are never satisfied. As Pelosi states, "everyone want to convert me."  In one segment she stops a truck driver whose truck is a mobile advertisement for Jesus and he tells her that if you don't believe in Jesus, your a "big loser." The documentary most cogently points out that the separation of Church and State is no longer. Proudly pushing the conservative agenda in church, the pastors are no longer simply men of God, but men of Power.


Grey's Anatomy: An Opinion

0401grays11 Perez Hilton is reporting that Isaiah Washington has checked into rehab:

Washington has reportedly entered a residential treatment facility. According to an insider, the actor agreed to undergo a psychological assessment after talks with ABC executives.

The hatemonger was spotted entering the facility at 9 a.m. today (Jan. 24).

"ABC has told him he must enter a program to examine why he would say such hateful words," the insider says.

While everyone seems to have an opinion, from suggesting that Washington's character become gay and have a torrid affair with T.R. Knight to basically leaving the show, it remains to be seen, exactly what will happen.

I have a friend in the hospital right now who is suffering from an AIDS related heart condition. To my knowledge, Grey's Anatomy has not had one episode that dealt with the issue of AIDS.  Shows like St. Elsewhere and ER, all have tackled the issue...maybe the writers think the subject is "old news" and people in this country, don't die of this disease any longer. Maybe, they are wrong. Maybe Washington's character, Dr. Burke, should confront a patient with AIDS. Firing Washington serves no purpose. This should be about edification not punishment. While we dance around the bonfire of this vanity, to miss the opportunity to educate and enlighten one another about the effects of language is sad, and like the missing AIDS patient on Grey's Anatomy, an opportunity lost.


The Dirt on Lesbians

Picture_7 Jennifer Aniston and Courtney Cox-Arquette will kiss. In the season finale of Dirt, the FX tabloid drama series, the two will play sparring, rival lesbian editors, who kiss and make nice, as much as two people in publishing can. Scheduled to air on March 27th, the show will reunite the two former Friends stars, who have not performed together since 2004. Aniston is no stranger to the lesbian lip kiss as she kissed Lisa Kudrow and Winona Rider on Friends, and smooched Dagmara Dominczyk, in the film Rock Star. But this is her first "outing" as a card-carrying lesbian.The website afterellen.com has a comprehensive look at the lesbian legacy of Friends.


The Shirley Q. Liquor Saga Continues

Apicture2 As recently reported, comedian Chuck Knipp, who performs in drag as a character named Shirley Q.Liquor, is facing more protests as he is scheduled to perform in West Hollywood, Ca., at The Factory, on February 11th. The character, Shirley Q. Liquor is a blackfaced, African American character. Shirley often addresses people by saying, "How you durrin'?" Knipp speaks in what is perceived by many as offensive "ghetto Black" speech, when he is performing as Shirley, and her conversations are often riddled with malaprops, as when she suggests that her cat needs to get "sprayed", or when she goes shopping at "K-Mark" or 'Wal-mark".  One of Knipp's big supporters is RuPaul. He has stated, "critics who think that Shirley Q. Liquor is offensive are idiots. Listen, I've been discriminated against by everybody in the world: gay people, black people, whatever. I know discrimination, I know racism, I know it very intimately. She's not racist, and if she were, she wouldn't be on my new CD." Nonetheless, Shirley is a polarizing character: Political and social commentator, Jasmyne Cannick has created a petition to be sent to the West Hollywood City Council, the gay owners of the Factory and Knipp's management, demanding that his shows be canceled. Frankly, prior to Cannick's bizarre equation that this had some relationship with Isaiah Washington's remarks regarding T.R. Knight, which she simply didn't believe (and of course, she had yet another petition), Shirley might have gone unnoticed. Having never seen Knipp perform, one can only wonder about the context; is it malicious, racist and or even funny? From the various videos on YouTube, particularly funny, doesn't seem to be the case. It will be interesting to see if Ms. Cannick succeeds in her her quest to quell the comedian.


Legal Brief: Alan Shore

Alan_shoreWhen the West Wing departed on its Democratic wings, one would have thought that intelligent television scripts had also, but not so. ABC's Boston Legal has created a television show that is often worth quoting. Alan Shore, the deeply flawed, but brilliant lawyer has to be the most interesting character on television. Rabidly heterosexual, smug and  arrogant, yet with a heart, he is someone with depth, mystery and complications. In last weeks episode, "Nuts", Mr. Shore defended his friend and smoking companion, Denny Crane, whose name came up on the government's no fly list (anyone with the name Denny Crane could not fly a commercial or private jet because a suspected terrorist with the same name appeared on the Homeland Security's list). Here in edited form, is Alan Shore's closing speech, written by  David E. Kelley, Andrew Kreisberg, and Janet Leahy:
"Some of the new iPods, you can load up to twenty thousand songs on them. Streams of videos, pictures, all on a thing this big. The technology in this country is staggering! And yet, the Government can’t get their computers to erase my client from the No-Fly list. Even though they admit he shouldn’t be on it. Instead, anybody named Denny Crane can’t fly. Now! Mr Winchell is correct, he doesn’t need me to indict Homeland Security, the 9/11 commission already did that. The American public certainly doesn’t need to hear it from me. No! What Homeland Security could really use from me or others, preferably others, is a little help. Why not get it? I’m sure Tom Ridge is a very nice man, capable too, as is Michael Chertoff. But I can get twenty thousand songs on my iPod! We have geniuses in this country. True pioneers of innovation. Steve Jobs, Steven Woziak, Steve Ballmer, If we could just round up some of our best Steves. We’ve got kids in garages inventing Google and YouTube. Jets can not only fly by computer, but they can now take off and land on auto pilot. Should we truly be stumped by this No-Fly computer list? How about something so simple as issuing a flyer's license? It could have your picture, fingerprints, you show it, scan the card and your fingers at the gate, if it’s a match you get your aisle seat! This can’t be undoable. Expensive?
Maybe. But judging from recent spending patterns we’ve got billions to throw around. Halliburton alone has profited ten billion from the war, maybe we could get them to kick in? Why is it our Government leaders only tap into the private sector for campaign contributions or to pass out contracts to cronies? Bill Gates is out there! Paul Allen! Has anybody called them? I bet Mark Cuban would personally fund the computer upgrades if you gave him free publicity. Is it really against national policy to think outside the box? This isn’t about beating up on Homeland Security. Everybody knows they’re trying, I’m sure they’re good people, but they simply cannot dispatch a representative to this courtroom to say the problem isn’t fixable, while thousands of Americans are
being denied due process. It so easily has to be fixable."


Evangelical Sex

Haggardsexweb_1 In a new HBO documentary, "Friends of God", disgraced Pastor Ted Haggard asserts that: " Evangelicals have the best sex life." The film is by Alexandra Pelosi, daughter of House Speaker, Nancy Pelosi. Haggard served as Pelosi's tour guide during the making of the documentary and proclaims "You know all the surveys say that evangelicals have the best sex life of any other group." Alexandra found Haggard to be a "reasonable, normal everyday man," and added that she found it, "hard to stomach" the scandal that forced Haggard from his position as president of the National Association of Evangelicals. Pelosi spent nearly a year seeking out the evangelical strongholds, during which Haggard resigned and her mother became the first woman Speaker of the House. "It was a lot harder walking up to the front door and saying to people, 'I'm from HBO' than saying my last name," she says. "Most of the people couldn't get over the fact that I was from New York. Plus, you know, I talk fast and look like someone who belongs in New York. I don't think anyone even heard my last name."
The documentary is scheduled to air this Thursday on HBO.


One Angry Woman

Jasmynexmas Jasmyne Cannick is a social commentator and activist who is known for addressing the issues others can't or simply won't.  Chosen as one of ESSENCE Magazine's 25 Women Shaping the World, at 29, Jasmyne is a member of the National Association of Black Journalists and writes a popular daily blog at www.jasmynecannick.com and www.myspace.com/jasmynecannick. Incidently, she is also a lesbian.
Some of the issues she addresses that others won’t are: Who Are You Going to Believe, Isaiah Washington or T. R. Knight? She also writes: Note to Washington: You don’t owe anyone anything.  If you didn’t say you didn’t say it then don’t let these white, and yes, I said white, gays force you into admitting to something that you did not do.” Now, admittedly, this was last week, before "the confession". In her current column she writes: “The gay community is not one big happy family.  For far too long, gay has been synonymous with white and power.”
Ms. Cannick seems to be obsessed with and keeps equating the Washington/Knight situation to a drag performer named Charles Knipp, who has a character named  Shirley Q. Liguor. Knipp’s shows have been constantly protested and closed down. But, Ms. Cannick seems to feel that Washington should NOT have the same fate, in fact, she has a petition, which even after Mr. Washington confessed, she doesn’t seem compelled to take down, the petition reads:

Recently beloved Grey’s Anatomy star Isaiah Washington has come under fire for using the f-word at the Golden Globes and allegedly using the f-word on October 22, 2006 in a scuffle with co-star Patrick Dempsey.

Since then, Isaiah has been the target of an orchestrated campaign focused on getting him fired from Grey’s Anatamy (sic).
While we don’t apporove of his use of the f-word at the Golden Globes, Washington has since apologized but the protest continues.

Isaiah Washington doesn’t deserve to lose his job over this incident.

He’s a good person with a good heart who made a mistake and is worthy of forgiveness.

If you want Isaiah Washington to stay on Grey’s Anatomy please sign this petition.

Thank you for taking the time out to read this.

It is curious that we have not heard from Ms. Cannick. Perhaps she owes us an apology.


Odd & Ends

File under: "The Devil made me do it": A major U.S. AIDS treatment group plans to file a lawsuit Monday that accuses drug giant Pfizer Inc. of illegally promoting recreational use of its blockbuster impotence pill Viagra. The AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) said Pfizer's actions had led to risky behavior by men and an increase in HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases."Pfizer has created and contributed to the perception of Viagra as a safe, sexy, lifestyle, recreational drug, to be frequently used regardless of the degree, or even existence of" erectile dysfunction, the group said in draft legal documents.
Can the Boston Legal episode by far behind?

The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) today announced their nominees for the 18th Annual GLAAD Media Awards, which will be announced at four separate ceremonies: in New York on March 26, in Los Angeles at the Kodak Theatre on April 14, in San Francisco on April 28 and in Miami on May 10. And the nominees are:
"Little Miss Sunshine" will vie with "The Night Listener," "Running With Scissors," "Talledega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby" and "V for Vendetta" in the category of outstanding film in wide release at the 18th annual GLAAD Media Awards.

For outstanding film in limited release, the nominees are "The History Boys," "Imagine Me & You," "Quinceanera," "Shortbus" and "Summer Storm."

On the TV side, the nominees for outstanding drama series are "Brothers & Sisters," "The L Word," "Hex," "The Sopranos" and "South of Nowhere." The comedy series nominated are "Desperate Housewives," "The Office," "So Notorious" and "Ugly Betty."


When you have nothing to say, say something.

Hillary6_1
Hillary Clinton is IN! Today she announced her candidacy via her website, which is big, but not unexpected news. On reaction that caught our interest was from NewsBusters: Exposing and Combating Liberal Media Bias, written by Mark Finkelstein. And here is his rather astute observation: "Look out the door. Presumably the announcement was shot in one of Hillary's homes: Chappaqua or Georgetown. Now I know it's been a mild winter, but even so, surely the leaves are gone from the trees and bushes in either spot. And check out the yellow spot in the bushes. At first I thought it was just a warm dapple of sunshine. But freeze the frame when, about 1/4 of the way through, Hillary says "how to end the deficits that threaten Social Security." That's not sunshine -- those are flowers in bloom. So, what's the story? Did Hillary have this video in the can during all those months while she was claiming to be making up her mind? Was it a carefully staged artificial background? "
This blooming controversy is heating up all the hotheads in Washington. Pundits and gardeners are being booked on all the interview shows. Because as Finkelstein asked in his final observation: "Wouldn't you love to see a reporter put the question to Hillary and see how she answers?"


Tick Tock

DoomsdayclockThat ticking you hear could well be the sound of the dooms day clock, which today inched closer to midnight, spelling an end for the planet. Atomic scientists across the world made the announcement today citing climate change as the newest and greatest threat to the small blue planet.
Kennette Benedict, executive director, Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, said: "As we stand at the brink of a Second Nuclear Age and at the onset of unprecedented climate change, our way of thinking about the uses and control of technologies must change to prevent unspeakable destruction and future human suffering."

Created in 1947 by the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, the Doomsday Clock has been adjusted only 17 times prior to today, most recently in February 2002 after the events of 9/11.


Goodby Woody's

Bevelogo The famed Woody's at the Beach, in the small but wealthy neighborhood of Laguna Beach is closing, The Advocate has reported. Scheduled to close on February 3, the restaurant has been sold to Avila's El Ranchito Mexican restaurant chain.
Owner, Joel Herzer issued this statement: "After nearly a decade serving the community we have sold “Woody’s at the Beach” effective in February.
We would like to express our heartfelt thanks and appreciation to everyone who has made these past years what they were. It is never an easy decision to leave a part of your life behind, especially one that has been so integral and affirming as “Woody’s” has been to us. The community has been a family to us and we will miss the day to day experiences that together we shared."
Also scheduled to close is the nearby Boom Boom Room, which has been a gay bar in the neighborhood for nearly thirty years.


It's So Gay

Johnston724359 Truth Wins Out, a non-profit, educational organization has filed suit against non-profit organization Americans For Truth and its president Peter LaBarbera for selling a misleading video on its Web-site titled, "It's Not Gay."
The primary spokesperson featured in "It's Not Gay" is Michael Johnston, an HIV+ so-called "ex-gay" leader who offers testimony claiming he became heterosexual in 1998 "through the power of Jesus Christ." He went on to collaborate with The American Family Association, Coral Ridge Ministries and Rev. Jerry Falwell.
In August 2003, Johnston's claims at sexual conversion collapsed in an embarrassing scandal. Michael Hamar, a Virginia attorney, called Besen to say he had a client who had been having an affair with Johnston, not realizing, at first, Johnston's true identity as a prominent ex-gay figure. Besen was also introduced to another young man who claimed to have had unprotected sex with the ex-gay leader. While in Virginia, Besen was shown a video of a man that looked eerily similar to Johnston having unprotected sex with several men. Hamar's client signed an affidavit swearing the man was Michael Johnston.
The story soon broke, and the then Reverend Johnston was forced to resign his ministry. LaBarbera, in an interview with the Southern Voice, the publication that broke story said: "He obviously had a moral failing, that's true."

 


Faggot

M_image10fe4f5d1409388fad04c74f233_1 T.R. Knight is speechless over Isaiah Washington's denial that he called Knight an anti-gay slur on the set of "Grey's Anatomy."

Knight told Ellen DeGeneres on her talk show that Washington called him a "faggot" in front of the cast while he was arguing with Patrick Dempsey.

Knight says he had never been called that to his face before and when it happened "something shifted" in him. He says that's what caused him to come out of the closet.
Washington's denial came at the Golden Globes after "Gray's Anatomy" had won the award for best T-V drama. When asked about the incident he snapped: "No, I did not call T.R. a faggot. It never happened."

Today, Knight went on the "The Ellen Show" to tell his side of the story. Of course, the importance of the story is that had the roles been reversed (using that forbidden "n" word), all hell would have broke lose.


Something you can sink your teeth into...

87487278 here!, America's premium gay television network, is pleased to announce that it has wrapped production on the first season of the new provocative original, scripted series The Lair. The first of six half-hour episodes will premiere on the network in Spring 2007.

"The Lair continues here!'s substantial rollout of provocative original programming in 2007 that can only be seen on here!," said Paul Colichman, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of here! Networks. "This newest addition to our line up authentically and unapologetically reclaims the horror genre for a LGBT audience."

Set in a small coastal town, The Lair opens as the bodies of young nameless men are turning up dead with vicious wounds to their necks. A young journalist is investigating a series of mysterious John Doe murders. Clues to these crimes lead him directly to a private gentlemen's club called The Lair, where the deepest, darkest desires are fulfilled. As he gets closer to solving the mystery, Thom finds himself ensnared in a blood thirsty coven of vampires.

The Lair stars Peter Stickles, who gathered a following this year from his work in the acclaimed indie Shortbus, as Damian, the leader of the coven of gay vampires, as well as newcomer David Moretti, who takes the lead as Thom.

"With a strong, talented cast, we are pleased to add The Lair as another original scripted series to our growing slate of projects," noted Meredith Kadlec, here!'s Vice President of Original Programming. "Our programming runs the gamut, from sexy soap operas to thought-provoking documentaries, and The Lair is a welcome addition to that line up." 

Recent and upcoming here! original films, series and specials include: The DL Chronicles, an award-winning series focusing on the diverse stories of men of color who by consequence and by choice, live sexually duplicitous and secret lifestyles; The Lair, a provocative and sexy vampire horror series; Dante's Cove, ranked "Best Soap of the Year" by The Advocate; the critically acclaimed Shock To The System: A Donald Strachey Mystery, the second installment in the series of original films starring Chad Allen as a gay private investigator; the provocative six-part docu-series Lesbian Sex and Sexuality, an unblinking look inside the world of lesbian culture from award-winning producer Katherine Linton; and the original film Shelter, an indie romantic drama about love, family and trying to stay true to yourself.


History Repeating?

Abc_gma_diana_071116_sp Maybe the best speech for anything "Dreamgirls" comes from the diva herself, Diana Ross, who on ABC's Good Morning America, admitted to not having seen the film, but said, "Maybe I should go see it with my lawyer," she joked. Golden Globe Award winner, Jennifer Hudson paid due respect to Florence Ballard, the original Supreme on whom the role is based, though in reality MS. Ballard died at a young age after numerous bouts with depression and alcoholism.
Ms. Ross is making appearances as her first studio recording in seven years, "I Love You" is being released. Speaking of Dreamgirls, Ms. Ross said:
"I've only heard what everybody else says, that it's very much my image and likeness," she said. "So if I've had an opportunity to influence any of these beautiful, talented young people, then I'm excited about it." The thinly guised movie reflects the sad reality that one of the strongest members of the singing trio was replaced by Berry Gordy as the group became internationally famous. Ms. Ross was actually booed at Ballard's funeral service. It should be noted that Jennifer Hudson, in her acceptance speech, thanked none of her co-stars.


January 15th

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"I still hear people say that I should not be talking about the rights of lesbian and gay people and I should stick to the issue of racial justice," she said. "But I hasten to remind them that Martin Luther King Jr. said, 'Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.'" "I appeal to everyone who believes in Martin Luther King Jr.'s dream to make room at the table of brother- and sisterhood for lesbian and gay people." –Coretta Scott King


Good By Queer Eye

285queereye011207_1 Another ending was announced yesterday. After five seasons, the Bravo series, Queer Eye is about to end. This season will the be the last for the five, Kyan Douglas, Thom Filicia, Ted Allen, Carson Kressley and Jai Rodriguez. When the show made its debut on July 15, 2003, its novel concept of transforming ordinary straight guys into better dressed, better decorated and better educated men was accepted even by middle America.
Over their four years and soon-to-be five seasons on air, the fivesome have lent their expertise to more than just straight New York men. Kressley & Co. have filmed episodes in Texas, Las Vegas, Florida and England and have expanded their makeover repertoire to include a female-to-male transgender, gay men and several members of the Boston Red Sox.
Alas, the welcome wore thin in recent years as the formulaic series became predictable.

The five members of the team have already gone on to other things. Carson Kressley, the "fashion savant" has released his own line of clothing called "Perfect" on QVC. Douglas, the "Grooming Guru" released a book called "Beautified" and is an adviser to L'Oreal. Thom Felicia is the new spokesperson for Pier 1 Imports and is signed on to host Dress My Nest on the Style Network. "Food and Wine Connoisseur" Allen is working on hosting a new PBS program, Uncorked: Wine Made Simple, debuting this Spring, and last and certainly not least, "Culture Vulture" Jai Rodriquez has chosen to become part of the new reality series, Grease: You're the One That I Want" which premiered Sunday. 


No More Attitude?

Attitudemagazineuk Attitude, the award winning British gay lifestyle magazine seems to have closed its doors. The website is gone, the phones are not being answered and the January issue has failed to appear. Anyone with magazine experience knows this usually portends the end. Created in 1994, Attitude was a stylish magazine for young gay men. Many celebrities have appeared on the cover including Kylie Minogue, Madonna, Elton John, Robbie Williams, Justin Timberlake, Heath Ledger, David Beckham, George Michael, Will Young, Christina Aguilera and the Scissor Sisters. Several of these covers have been world exclusives as in the case of the December 2005 issue, which featured Elton John and David Furnish's only major joint interview about their wedding. In that same year, Atttude made publishing history as attitude editor Adam Mattera won Best Men's Magazine editor of the year at the BSME awards. It was the first time that a gay magazine had competed and won the prize. The magazine, owned by British company, Remnant Media, has reportedly locked the doors.


Historic Stonewall Inn Saved

Stonewall_inn A community effort spearheaded by three gay businessmen in Manhattan's West Village has saved the birthplace of the modern gay rights movement, reports Pinknews.co.uk. Due to reopen in February, the Inn was facing imminent closure when three gay entrepreneurs Bill Morgan and Tony DeCicco, who own the Duplex bar in the West Village, along with village fixture Kurt Kelly, were moved to act.
"We spoke with the landlord and let them know that we were interested in keeping the Stonewall as it has such an important place in both the West Village and in gay rights history,� explains Morgan. The three sought outside investors and were pleased to find many, both straight and gay were interested in keeping the iconic Inn alive.
"Everyone recognized the potential loss to the community both here and the gay community worldwide." Morgan continued. "A few of the investors have been volunteering their time and labor to defray the cost of renovating." The Stonewall Inn gained fame in June 1969, as the denizens of Manhattan's run-down Stonewall Inn finally stood up for their rights and rioted, tired of years of police harassment.  


Hinting about Huell

Howsersm_1 Radio host Adam Corolla did a very funny bit on his radio show this morning discussing Public Broadcastings California Gold host Huell Howser: "I don't when Luis (the constant cameraman on the show) puts the camera down and Huell undoes the boots with the steel shanks if there's any love to be found. You do not want to see that, that is not California's Gold. The banter continued with new co-host xPartridge, Danny Bonaduce. Adam seemed particularly enthralled with Huell's size and made this observation:
"I would think Huell is a bear and a top. If he runs into another top, that top will be converted into a bottom."

Despite the coonstant innuendo, Adam and Danny seemed to have a real admiration for Huell, who can take a bucket of rocks and make it interesting.


Long Live the Queen

Morrissey_rock_never_dies_1_1 Morrissey has announced he will headline three shows in Los Angeles.

The star, a former resident of the city, will play at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium February 1-3. Tickets go on sale tomorrow (January 13).

In addition, the star has just released an EP via US iTunes. The digital version of the single 'I Just Want To See the Boy Happy', from his latest album 'Ringleader Of The Tormentors', contains five extra tracks. Morrissey, better known as the riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma, remains a popular figure. In December he beat out Paul McCartney and David Bowie in a poll conducted on the viewers of the BBC's The Culture Show, called Britain's Greatest Living Icon. Then again, Sir Richard Attenborough came in first.
A Morrissey concert is something to behold. His fans, both male and female swoon, faint and tremble at his every depressing word. His sexuality, which seems quite obvious at this point (with lyrics like “There are explosive kegs between my legs.”) has and remains something he is reluctant to speak about. But as Rufus Wainwright recently said about him: "Whether he's gay or not, he is the gay Elvis. He is among the greatest entertainers of our time. The banter, the dancing, the stage-craft, it all conspires and you know exactly what Morrissey is. He is heroic. He is a total package, like Dean Martin or Prince."

   

NewsBreak

As mentioned yesterday, the iPhone, the gleefully announced Apple product, is not having so benign conversations with Cisco. Yesterday, the San Jose, California based company filed suit in the U.S. District Court against Apple over the the use of its registered trademark.
"Cisco entered into negotiations with Apple in good faith after Apple repeatedly asked permission to use Cisco's iPhone name," Cisco general counsel Mark Chandler said in a statement. "There is no doubt that Apple's new phone is very exciting, but they should not be using our trademark without our permission.”
It is likely that Apple would lose the case, so alternative names are being looked at: iMobile, iCall (you answer), iCell, iRing and of course, iSubpoena.
Of interest: a story on how Apple kept the "iphone" secret for over two years.

Meth Coffee: a rebel coffee company in San Francisco, opened for business today with the launch of its hard- hitting coffee roast for energy addicts and caffeine freaks.

For children only: Amazon.com releases, "Gangsta Rap Coloring Book"

Perez Hilton hosts Michael Musto book party.


Covenant of Boys




It's a Qr/XY dream come true. With the recent release of "The Convenant" on DVD, one can pause, move slowly through the swimming and shower scenes. With a cast of pretties, including Steve Strait, Sebastian Stan and Toby Hemingway, the storyline is slightly confusing but essentially concerns itself with a band of boy witches from the Ipswich Colony of Massachusetts. Attending a Gothic school that seems eternally shrouded in fog and rain, they fight evil, show off their 2% body fat abs and reveal what testosterone will do if your a teenager (mostly fighting) and of course, the usual fag insults. 

A Photographer Shows in Brooklyn

Michael_hotel_1 For twenty two years the Wessel + O' Connor Fine Art Gallery has showcased homoerotic photography, featuring some of the most significant names in the genre: Steven Arnold, Jim French, George Platt Lynes, Herb Ritts, Bruce of Los Angeles, Steve Klein, George Hoyningen-Huene and John Dugdale among others. Tonight in a show entitled "Schooldayz," they feature the work of the young Brandon Herman. Born and raised in a small suburb outside of San Francisco, Brandon's work is a combination of stark realities set in stark illusions. Using mostly friends, companions and objects of desire, his work pays homage to the ordinary while transcending it by the sheer reality of taking a picture.
"When I take pictures they become my reality and the photographs become important mementos, proof that for a few hours at a time I got together with my friends and made my fantasies come true." It should be noted that in his myspace profile, he lists his profession as a "plastic surgeon", which might be apt as he undermines reality, suffusing it with movie-like lighting with deep saturations of color redefining the ordinary. His work is showing January 11-February 24. The Wessel + Connor Gallery, 111 Front Street, Suite 200, Brooklyn, NY.

 


Qr: Quite Ridiculous

Wwjd "Qr is our readers' magazine... It's a user-generated product for a user-focused era. The boys who read Qr also drive MySpace and YouTube - they know the value of producing content and enjoy seeing themselves in print. Qr is a magazine for gay youth because we're the only magazine that won't talk down to you... We speak to the pierced, the punks, the skaters, the geeks and clubaholics who feel ignored by gay media."
This nonsense from publisher Eric Bogs of the new Qr magazine, aimed primarily at the younger gay man a la XY magazine, which last time we looked does exactly the same thing. In fact, many staff members of the new Qr are from XY. And in every press release they never fail to mention "their ages" least anyone suspect that a magazine for teens was being published by anyone over 30. Presumably, Eric has a year left on his contract. What seems lost on the publishers is that their readers are actually online, and not reading their magazines. What exactly do you get in magazine that you can't get online? Boys kissing? (they will be presenting a monthly feature of just that). XY and its sister Qr have always felt slightly bogus. While contending they are magazines for youth, one can certainly imagine its the older gentleman who likes youth who is really viewing the magazine. And can we discuss art direction?
Why is it every magazine that aims for a teen market has to look the same? The spread here looks exactly like the spreads in Sixteen magazine, although the slightly Arabic lettering adds to the mystery of what the title is...maybe only teens know. And has any teen magazine every seen a primary color they didn't like? Why bad graphics are suppose to suggest a youthful energy is any body's guess. Bogs goes on to say "The current top U.S. gay publications are mostly aimed towards an older gay and lesbian readership, and lack the authenticity and punch that Qr delivers." Careful Bogs, you will soon be entering that demographic yourself.


Pod People

Picture3 Look. Create. Connect. That is how the new online video service poddater.com describes the process of pod dating. By browsing and creating videos through a series of tags such athletic, tall, hot, one can apparently find the man of their pod dreams anywhere, anytime. Still in its infancy, there is not much to look at yet, but as the ease in which videos are downloaded becomes simpler, the popularity of this dating tool is sure to grow.


Eve and Eve

Mag_edit_britishelle_01 Eve Salvail, supermodel and actress came out today on the Tyra Banks show. The model/actress best known for her appearances in The Fifth Element and Zoolander told Tyra "I feel like people that watch your show may be (from) all walks of life, all kinds of people. I could come out in Out magazine and whatnot, but I reach to gay people that are already out; how's it gonna help them?"
Salvail was discovered by Jean-Paul Gaultier and has appeared on the covers of many international fashion magazines. She was somewhat prodded to come out as a friend recently told The Advocate, that indeed Salvail was a lesbian. Salvail, who has been with her current partner for 18 months, revealed she tried dating men but quickly discovered she was gay as her modelling career was taking off: "I soon realised I could not fall in love with them. The way I feel with a girl is completely different."
To learn more about Salvail visit her very cool website.


Apple Gets it Right

Iphone_2 It's sleek, a Gemini, touch controlled and it cost $499. Today Apple, Inc. (the name has changed from Apple Computers) and its brilliant CEO, Steve Jobs revealed the newest must-have gadget, the iPhone. Not only a mobile phone, it is the ultimate PDA, combining video, music, photo organizer, Internet browser and email device wrapped up in one thin, modern device. Ending weeks of speculation, Apple stocks rose 8.3% in one day. The phones are due on the market in June and will sell for $499 (4Gb) and $599 (8Gb) versions. How Apple will deal with Cisco over the patent name is a mystery. Cisco has owned the name since 1996 (as part of its Linksys system) but they are rumored to be in benign conversations with Apple regarding the title. Also rumored is the name might actually change to iMobile.


Rosie vs. the World

RosieFox News is reporting that Rosie O' Donnell is feuding with boss, Barbara Walters. In this unverified report, the incident took place yesterday on the set of "The View" the yenta talk-fest program. Walters apparently attempted to hug Rosie, who she hadn't seen in two weeks (she was on vacation) when Rosie fumed, "You kept me in the newspapers this whole time!"
Rosie, of course, has been feuding with wispy haired millionaire Donald Trump. Yesterday, Trump's usually ignored daughter, Ivanka chimed in calling Rosie a "bully". Ouch!
The bad news for Mr. Trump is that his show, "The Apprentice" is not doing so well. Sunday's premiere garnered a mere 9.1 million viewers, which is down 600,000 from last year. On the other hand, The View is doing quite well, and everyone will be tuning in to see if Barbara slaps Rosie.