While I haven’t watched since the first three seasons, ‘Glee’ officially ends its run tonight.
After six seasons, the show says good-bye in a special two-hour event. When the show first premiered, it changed television. The format was fresh and the talent strong – I could even stand Lea Michele back then. We found Finn foxy and watched Kurt blossom as gay youth do.
But what made the show so special was that it brought LGBTQ issues to the mainstream. The religious right has hated the show due to the attention it has given to bullying, same-sex relationships, physical disabilities, transgender issues and all-around relevant topics that we have faced in the 2010s. It exposed America to the hate and discrimination that all of us in the LGBTQ community have faced. Cory Monteith‘s death from a drug overdose reminded us that what we see on the surface may not represent the demons who lie underneath.
It revived the Journey song ‘Don’t Stop Believing’ as too many groups to count lip synced and copied the ‘Glee’ version of the song (and its choreography). When I saw ‘Rock of Ages’ on Broadway, the closing number was that song. While likely a coincidence, the ROA cast did not do justice to the song. After all, it had a larger audience on ‘Glee.’ The show covered songs from the childhood of every living generation. I don’t think I had listened to Paul Anka’s ‘We’re Having a Baby’ until Finn sang it in season 2 since it came out in the 1970s.
‘Glee’ seemed to spawn movies like ‘Pitch Perfect,’ and likely led to revival of high school glee clubs everywhere.
Tonight, the show is over. And it mattered.
As we walk down memory lane, here is the first musical number (‘Don’t Stop Believing’) and the last – Lea performing a ballad written by castmate Darren Criss.
Will you be watching?
Gallup has released a new poll that establishes San Francisco as the gay capitol (of at least the U.S. – if not the world):
The San Francisco metropolitan area has the highest percentage of the adult population who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT) of any of the top 50 U.S. metropolitan areas, followed by Portland, Oregon, and Austin, Texas.
Variation in the percentage who identify as LGBT across the largest metro areas is relatively narrow, with San Francisco's percentage just 2.6 percentage points higher than the national average of 3.6%, and the lowest-ranked metro area — Birmingham, Alabama — one point below the national average.
The top 10 includes metro areas from every region of the country except the Midwest. Given the long history of a visible and politically active LGBT community in San Francisco, the city's ranking at the top of this list is not surprising. Similar to San Francisco, Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) like Portland, Seattle and Los Angeles in the West, and Boston in the Northeast, are known for their progressive social and political climates and active LGBT communities. Hartford is the capital of Connecticut, which has permitted same-sex couples to legally marry longer than every state except Massachusetts.
MSAs like Austin and New Orleans in the South, and Denver in the Rocky Mountain region, all have reputations as socially progressive cities within states and regions that are much more conservative, perhaps making them regional hubs for the LGBT population.
The ranking of Salt Lake City in the top 10 may seem surprising because Utah is one of the most conservative states in the country. However, the state recently passed a law prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity in employment and public accommodation, the first state to do so since 2007. The majority of states still do not have such laws on the books.
These results are based on responses to the question, “Do you, personally, identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender?” — included in more than 374,000 Gallup Daily tracking interviews conducted between June 2012 and December 2014. This is the largest ongoing study of the distribution of the LGBT population in the U.S. on record, and the first time a study has had large enough sample sizes to provide estimates of the LGBT population by MSA.
The number of interviews conducted in each MSA between June 2012 and December 2014 is large enough to allow for estimates of each of the 50 largest metro areas' LGBT population. Each MSA except two had at least 3,000 interviews, with the lowest sample size of 2,674 for New Orleans and the largest of 36,947 for New York. The LGBT percentage, along with the number of completed interviews conducted in each MSA is presented in the accompanying table.
Birmingham, Alabama has the lowest number of LGBTs per capita – which may or may not come as a surprise
You can read more about the poll at Gallup's site.
The point made in the tweet above is one we gays need to take seriously. Just a thought for your Friday.
Thank you, Harvey Walker, for sharing this.
Hopefully the tickets won’t be $800. Yes, a Burner virgin has plans to write and produce a musical based on the insanity:
The musical is the brainchild of Matt Werner, a 30-year-old New York City-based Google employee who has never been to Burning Man. This year will be his first.
Matt Werner, 30, of New York, is the man behind what could become Burninng Man: The Musical. The Oakland, Calif. native — a former “hacker house” resident and a friend to many Silicon Valley hipster techies — admits that he sees the irony: A virgin Burner orchestrates a musical version of the world’s favorite desert Utopian festival that he has never been to.
His own story seems to be a little bit reflected in the plot of the unborn musical. The story line focuses on a 25-year old techie named Joe who lives in San Francisco and commutes down to Silicon Valley.
Joe goes to Burning Man one year and it disappoints initially.
“His lofty ambitions to network with high-powered executives are not met. Between getting dumped by his girlfriend, dancing with sparkle ponies, and nearly dying while on a vision quest in the desert, he reaches a real low,” according to Werner’s web page.
“In the midst of this low, the acceptance, connection, and playfulness he experiences at Burning Man make him start to question his past life of ambition and power in Silicon Valley. The sharing economy and free spirits he meets in the desert make him wonder–is his real mission in life just to make money? Or is it maybe to authentically connect with others and help others?” the synopsis reads.
By August 30, Werner would like to debut the opening theme song of the musical in a YouTube studio-produced video, funded by $5,000 that Werner hopes to collect via his web page by April 22.
By the summer of 2016, Werner would like to see Burning Man: The Musical as a full production.
You can check out his Kickstarter page here.
via Google employee to create Burning Man: The Musical.
Republican Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (above with Sen. Ted Cruz) doesn’t want gay employees to be able to take time off from work to care for their ailing spouses.
Paxton, a tea partier, filed a lawsuit Wednesday against the Obama administration over a new rule extending the Family & Medical Leave Act to same-sex couples who live in states that don’t recognize their marriages.
Paxton is also advising state agencies — which employ 310,000 people — not to follow the new FMLA rule.
“This lawsuit is about defending the sovereignty of our state, and we will continue to protect Texas from the unlawful overreach of the federal government,” Paxton said in a statement. “The newly revised definition of ‘spouse’ under the FMLA is in direct violation of state and federal laws and U.S. Constitution. Texans have clearly defined the institution of marriage in our state, and attempts by the Obama Administration to disregard the will of our citizens through the use of new federal rules is unconstitutional and an affront to the foundations of federalism.”
Read more: Texas Attorney General Wants To Prevent Gay Workers From Caring For Sick Spouses
Religous liberty at its finest:
“Our sign referencing Satan demanding his equal rights to ascend into the heavens and be God was simply ‘I’ and all about that individual,” Greene told WATE. “It was not a statement against any one group in particular, you know what about the rights of the unborn babies, the rights of children, the rights of everyone?”