Following a lawsuit against a bigoted florist who refuses servicing LGBTs, the state’s legislature is trying to pass a bill to legalize any and all discrimination against our community:
If Washington’s proposed pro-discrimination bill passes — stranger things have happened — then LGBT folks had better prepare themselves for a futuristic, Mad Max-esque hellscape where they’ll have to fend for themselves and it’s every gay for his or her self. Or at least, that’s what the office of one of the bill’s sponsors seems to think.
Senator Mike Hewitt (R-Walla Walla*) is a co-sponsor of SB 5927, a bill that would allow businesses to deny service to LGBT customers or anyone who conflicts with their religious or philosophical beliefs. Ticked-off constituent Jay Castro called the offices of the bills sponsors to get some answers, but what he got from Hewitt’s office was a heaping helping of sass.
During the phone calls, he says he asked staffers some variation of the question ”What are rural gays supposed to do if the only gas station or grocery store for miles won’t sell them gas and food?”
Castro says the staffer at Hewitt’s office surprised him with the answer “Well, gay people can just grow their own food.” When Castro then asked the male staffer his name, he refused to identify himself, reportedly responding, “I don’t have to tell you that,” then, “Don’t call here again,” and hanging up the phone.
The bill is in response to lawsuits against Richland florist Barronelle Stutzman who refused to provide flowers for the wedding of a gay couple that had frequented her shop for nearly a decade.
Well, I guess we will need to get ready for a world that is like this…
There’s nothing gayer than the Tonys, and today the nominees were announced. Kinky Boots, the musical scored by Cyndi Lauper, leads with 13 nominations, followed by Matilda The Musical with 12. Here’s a partial list of the lucky nominees:
Best Musical Bring It On: The Musical
A Christmas Story, The Musical
Matilda The Musical
Best Play Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike
The Testament of Mary
The Assembled Parties
Best Revival Of A Play Golden Boy
Trip to Bountiful
Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?
Best Revival Of A Musical Annie
The Mystery of Edwin Drood
Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella
Best Performance By An Actor In A Leading Role In A Play
Tom Hanks, Lucky Guy
Nathan Lane, The Nance
Tracy Letts, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?
David Hyde Pierce, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike
Tom Sturridge, Orphans
Best Performance By An Actress In A Leading Role In A Play
Laurie Metcalf, The Other Place
Amy Morton, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?
Kristine Nielsen, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike
Holland Taylor, Ann
Cicely Tyson, The Trip to Bountiful
Best Performance By An Actor In A Leading Role In Musical
Bertie Carvel, Matilda The Musical
Santino Fontana, Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella
Rob McClure, Chaplin
Billy Porter, Kinky Boots
Stark Sands, Kinky Boots
Best Performance By An Actress In A Leading Role In A Musical
Stephanie J. Block, The Mystery of Edwin Drood
Carolee Carmello, Scandalous
Valisia LeKae, Motown The Musical
Patina Miller, Pippin
Laura Osnes, Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella
Best Book Of A Musical A Christmas Story, The Musical Kinky Boots Matilda The Musical Rodgers + Hammerstein’s Cinderella
Best Original Score Written For The Theatre A Christmas Story, The Musical Hands on a Hardbody* Kinky Boots Matilda The Musical
The ceremony will take place on June 9 at Radio City Music Hall. A host has not yet been chosen but could it be Neil Patrick Harris for the fourth year in a row? Hugh Jackman? Bette Midler? We will let you know when we hear something.
Since I was in a car all day yesterday between Palm Springs and San Francisco, I did not get a chance to blog about NBA player Jason Collins‘ announcement that he is gay – making him the first professional athlete to come out of the closet while still playing.
Today, Collins gave his first post-coming out interview and expressed thanks to the support he’s received in the past 24 hours. Here’s the full interview with ABC:
And the Internet has responded in every way possible – good AND bad. Here’s a digest of reaction to Collins’ announcement. First, the good:
A day after calling NBA player Jason Collins to congratulate him on coming out on the cover ofSports Illustrated, President Barack Obama said he “couldn’t be prouder” of Collins at a press briefing Tuesday morning.
As he was leaving the press briefing, a reporter asked him to remark on his conversation with Collins.
“He seems like a terrific young man,” Obama said. “I told him I couldn’t be prouder … one of the extraordinary measures of progress that we’ve seen in this country has been the recognition that the LGBT community deserves full equality, not just partial equality. Not just tolerance, but a recognition that they’re fully a part of the American family. Given the importance of sports in our society for an individual who’s excelled at the highest levels in one of the major sports to go out and say, ‘This is who I am, I’m proud of it, I’m still a great competitor, I’m still seven foot tall and can bang with Shaq, and deliver a hard foul.’ … For, I think, a lot of young people out there who are gay or lesbian, who are struggling with these issues, to see a role model out there who’s unafraid … I think this is a great thing. I think Americans should be proud that this is just one more step in the ongoing recognition that we treat everybody fairly. Everybody’s part of a family. We judge people on the basis of their character and their performance, not on their sexuality. I’m very proud of him.”
Ellen Degeneres: “He’s 7-feet tall so when he came out of the closet, he had to duck.” Watch…
Towleroad: Gay Footballer Robbie Rogers Proud of Jason Collins
I think I was surprised like everyone else. Obviously, I know what it is like going through being gay and being a professional athlete and being closeted and all the emotions and all the thoughts that go through your mind. I don’t know him, but I was very happy and proud for him. But most of all, I was happy that our society gave him such a positive response including athletes from all over the world on Twitter. Society is really changing, people are moving along and accepting gay athletes and I think more athletes will follow in his footsteps.
To the bad:
Bryan Fischer: “Don’t Sign Jason Collins, He’ll Be Eyeballing Players In The Shower”
AFA’s spokesperson Fischer dusted off some of his same arguments that he did to speak against the DADT repeal 2 years ago. Mainly, that the gays will ogle other players in the shower…
Back2Stonewall: ESPN’s Chris Broussard Slams Openly Gay NBA Player Jason Collins: “Thats A Sin”
Personally, I don’t believe that you can live an openly homosexual lifestyle or an openly, like premarital sex between heterosexuals. If you’re openly living that type of lifestyle, then the Bible says you know them by their fruits. It says that, you know, that’s a sin. If you’re openly living in unrepentant sin, whatever it may be, not just homosexuality, whatever it maybe, I believe that’s walking in open rebellion to God and to Jesus Christ. So I would not characterize that person as a Christian because I don’t think the bible would characterize them as a Christian.
He was born with genes that made him tall. He wasn’t born with a gay gene,” says LaBarbera. “I feel sorry for this man. He’s being celebrated, which will encourage him to stay in his sin, and he needs to leave it like so many men and women have before him.”
The family advocate adds there is “a huge push to have homosexuality embraced in professional sports.” Teams in the four major professional sports have special events to draw positive attention to the lifestyle – and LaBarbera contends that is not healthy for children.
“These professional athletes are models for children, whether we like it or not,” he says. “And so this will lead the children embracing homosexuality and saying, Hey, it’s good enough for Jason Collins it’s good enough for me.”
It is LaBarbera’s hope that Collins will encounter Christians who will help him leave the lifestyle by embracing Jesus Christ.
Regardless of the plethora of opinions, Ellen said it best: “It’s a big deal.”
This is so awesome. Shaun works at Google in San Francisco and his boyfriend (now fiance) Michael lives in London. On a recent trip to the Google UK office, Shaun surprised Michael with lunch and a proposal (to which he said yes). Adorable – watch below…
Yesterday, Rhode Island’s state senate passed a bill calling for marriage equality. It now goes back to that state’s house (where it passed once before) and then to Governor Chafee for signature and passage (he has said he will sign it).
Of course, NOM is all up in a tizzy about the measure and President Brian Brown wasted no time sending an email and blogging about the disappointment:
“Lawmakers have allowed themselves to be fooled into thinking they have protected people of faith when in fact they have put those who believe in true marriage in the crosshairs of the law and gay ‘marriage’ activists. It won’t be long before the repercussions begin to be felt.”
. . . “For the first time, the state of Rhode Island is saying to its children they do not deserve both a mother and a father, and are backing a law that is designed to intentionally deprive some kids of either a mom or a dad,” Brown said. “It’s bad enough when families break down through divorce or death, but it’s unconscionable when a state encourages this through policies that deprive children of the love of both a mother and a father. This is a very sad day for Rhode Island.”
Interestingly enough, many of the comments on the post are pro-marriage equality:
And then you get the bigots:
Barb: “Manufactured children”? Isn’t that what sex does. “Gay mutants”? How about Gay Ninja Mutants.
John N: “People are not allowed to vote on this issue”? Didn’t you elect your senator or are they all appointed by an imaginary king?
This Saudi, Dubai-based “fashion photographer, actor, poet” Omar Borkan Al Gala, is claiming that he is one of three men deported from Saudi Arabia for being too handsome. He may or may not be, but we can hope he finds asylum in my bed can’t we?
Frankie Valenti (aka Johnny Hazzard) is making his mainstream acting debut in the Kickstarter-funded film “Where We Belong.” The film is an intimate drama that explores the unique dynamic between two wildly different gay brothers. Younger brother Todd ran away at eighteen and never looked back while older brother Chet quietly assumed the burden of prodigal son. They are never able to really connect with one another until Dad dies. It speaks volumes about the tremendous force he had (and still has) over them and the internalized shame they both carry as a result.
Watch the trailer below and learn more at the film’s Kickstarter site. How’s Johnny’s acting? Hard to tell as this short video synopsis was done pre-production (the actual film will shoot in June) but he looks pretty good.
What do you think of Johnny’s mainstream performance?