It is so disappointing to have Billy Graham throw his support behind North Carolina’s Amendment One.
But it’s also nice to see Former First Daughter Chelsea Clinton speaking out so eloquently against it.
‘Amendment One unfairly targets women, children and families, gay and straight, who fall outside of the narrow definition of family articulated by those who drafted the legislation,’ says the only child of former US President Bill Clinton and current Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. ‘It is our duty to join the fight on behalf of both the gay and lesbian North Carolinians who were the original targets of the amendment and the tens of thousands of straight male and female North Carolinians who will be collateral damage if the amendment passes next Tuesday.’
Clinton’s remarks appear on the ActBlue website where money is being raised to defeat the measure.
She also explains why she decided to speak out: ‘I believe that everyone must stand up for what is right, whenever possible, wherever possible. I also believe that when the civil rights of any one American or group of Americans in one place are questioned, all Americans, everywhere, should care that the answer is the right one. Those are lessons I learned at a young age from my parents and they are guiding principles in my life.’
But that hasn’t stopped hm from joining in on the debate over North Carolina’s anti-gay marriage measure Amendment One which goes before voters on Tuesday.
He has purchased full-page ads that will appear in 14 newspapers over the weekend. Voters go to the polls on May 8.
‘At 93, I never thought we would have to debate the definition of marriage,’ Graham writes in the advertisement. ‘The Bible is clear — God’s definition of marriage is between a man and a woman. I want to urge my fellow North Carolinians to vote FOR the marriage amendment on Tuesday, May 8.’
Oscar winner Anna Paquin, who plays a telepathic vampire lover on HBO’s True Blood, surprised many when she came out as bisexual in 2010.
In the new issue of Zooey magazine, she talks about how people are skeptical that someone can truly be attracted to both sexes.
‘I’m sure for some people saying they’re bisexual feels less scary than making a statement that they’re gay,’ she says. ‘For me, it’s not really an issue because I’m someone who believes being bisexual is actually a thing.’
‘It’s not made up,’ she adds. ‘It’s not a lack of decision. It’s not being greedy or numerous other ignorant things I’ve heard at this point. … For a bisexual, it’s not about gender. That’s not the deciding factor for who they’re attracted to.’
Nominations for the 2012 Tony Awards were announced on Tuesday and just a day later, the nominees gathered to pose for photos and give interviews at the annual “Meet the Nominees Press Reception” held at the Millennium Broadway Hotel.
Here are the portraits of two of the openly gay nominees: a radiant Cynthia Nixon who is up for lead actress in a play for her performance in Wit. She won in the category back in 2007 for Rabbit Hole.
Harvey Fierstein, already a three-time Tony winner, is nominated for best book of a musical for Newsies: The Musical. He previously won in the category in 1984 for La Cage aux Folles and has best lead actor in a musical Tonys for Hairspray and Torch Song Trilogy.
Herndon Graddick is new to the job as president of the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation.
Graddick worked for Current TV, CNN and at a global climate change initiative before becoming GLAAD’s vice president of programs and communication in 2010.
Before ascending to the job of president, Graddick had been involved in handling such high-profile controversies as Tracy Morgan’s anti-gay tirade during a stand-up act and CNN’s Roland Martin’s homophobic tweets on Super Bowl Sunday.
‘One of the reasons why I wanted to do this job is I feel like the work we’ve done in the past year has been really making a difference, and I’ve felt really satisfied by that,’ Graddick told Washington Blade last month. ‘So I wanted to put my name in the ring for the president’s spot because I want that to continue and I wanted to do even more of it.’
Graddick has made clear that GLAAD is in a very proactive mode these days.
He told The Blade: ‘I think the time is now not just to be defensive, but to really go on the offensive, because we’re sick of not being treated like everybody else, and Americans are behind us and I think that if you really put your finger in the air, you can feel something changing in America.’
Oprah Winfrey just posted this photo of herself on Facebook with Neil Patrick Harris and David Burtka. I liked it so much I had to share with you immediately! She interviews the pair for her Oprah’s Next Chapter series on OWN.
NPH tweeted: Yet another My Life Is Random moments: Oprah came over to our house today. I made her pizza. … Then @Davidburtka got to interview @Oprah herself for an @ENews exclusive. He did a great job, very proud of him!
I love Alan Cumming’s work on the screen but I love his outspoken nature even more.
The Tony winner and Emmy nominee is starring in a new film called Any Day Now which just won the audience award at the Tribeca Flm Festival.
Cumming and Garret Dillahunt play a couple in the 1970s who are engaged in a legal battle to adopt a teenager with Down’s Syndrome who they have been caring for.
The actor shared his thoughts on gay adoption at the Tribeca festival with Queerty.com. He is incredulous that a perception persists among some that gay men are not qualified to care for children.
‘You know, most of the abuse against children comes from straight parents—from straight men, actually,’ Cumming said. ‘And its a terrible misstatement that gay men are somehow going to be more abusive to their children. It’s absolutely not true in any way. And yet still there’s kind of this myth in society. And I find that part of the whole prejudice that gay people suffer. We’re still fighting against it and I hope that this film will in some way help to eradicate that.’
Cumming and his husband, graphic artist Grant Shaffer, got married in New York City in January – five years after they entered into a civil partnership in London.
But the couple has no plans to adopt at this point.
‘Over the years we’ve come to a decision that we don’t want to do it,’ Cumming says. ‘I’ve got a relationship that’s the most conducive and strong for [parenting], but we’re actually kind of happy as we are.’
It is clearly very tricky to be gay and to be a Republican elected official.
Missouri state representative Zach Wyatt is not running for reelection and decided to come out this week and to speak out against the state’s proposed ‘Don’t Say Gay’ legislation.
‘I’m not the first or the last Republican to come out,’ Wyatt said. ‘I’ve just gotten tired of the bigotry being shown from both sides of the aisle on gay issues. Being gay has never been a Republican or Democratic issue and it should never be.’
It is a story that has sickened me more than most of this type because it just shows what’s going on out there in our own country and what the kids are still up against even as we make advances in LGBT education and equality.
Audio of the pastor’s remarks have gone absolutely viral and he’s issued a retraction. I’m just going to go ahead and post it in its entirety here. You can decide for yourself whether you buy any of it.
I’m also going to re-post the audio of his comment below as a reminder of what he said, how he said it, and how members of the congregation responded.
It is completely shameful.
The purpose of this document is to issue an official statement of retraction of any and all words that suggest that child abuse is appropriate for any and all types of behaviors including (but not limited to) effeminacy and sexual immorality of all types. I should not have said what I said about “cracking,” “punching,” and particular bias toward outward attraction of girls. Nor should I have used the words “special dispensation.” I did not say that children should be squashed. I have never suggested children or those in the LGBT lifestyle should be beaten, punched, abused (physically or psychologically) in any form or fashion. The gospel is the only source of power sufficient to deliver anyone from the power, penalty, and presence of all forms of sin including, but not limited to, all forms of sexual immorality including homosexuality.
I apologize to anyone I have unintentionally offended. I did not say anything to intentionally offend anyone in the LGBT community. My intent was to communicate the truth of the Word of God concerning marriage. My words were not scripted. It is unfortunate I was not more careful and deliberate. I can understand how these words could be misunderstood without the context of years of ministering to the people of God at Berean Baptist Church. I have received nothing but notes of appreciation and support from the people within the church. To those in the greater body of Christ in Fayetteville, North Carolina, and the world–I seek your forgiveness if I have offended or hurt the cause of Christ. I have learned from this and will seek to be more articulate and deliberate with my words in the future.
However, I do not apologize for the manner in which the Word of God articulates sexual immorality, including homosexuality and effeminacy, as a behavior that is an abomination to God. Nothing in this official statement of retraction should be perceived as an apology for the overarching intent and message of the sermon and the need to define marriage as one man and one woman and to maintain the gender distinctions that God created from the beginning when He made them male and female (Genesis 1). I recognize that there are those in the LGBT community who believe that their sexual behavior is not sin. I do not agree with them and this official retraction should not be misunderstood as an apology for the gospel of Jesus Christ or the Word of God.
I do not apologize for the manner in which I emphasized the importance of one man and one woman getting married and staying married for the benefit of their children and society.
I am confident that if the state of North Carolina was not in a state constitutional battle to define marriage as one man and one woman, this sermon would not have received the media attention it has through the intentional framing of my words without the context of the entire sermon on various blogs.
I think it is absolutely wonderful that Aubrey O’Day won $50,000 on Celebrity Apprentice to benefit the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN).
GLSEN is an is an organization that seeks to end discrimination, harassment, and bullying based on sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.
What isn’t so wonderful is what happened on Sunday’s episode of the show after O’Day won the money: she bullied fellow contestant Arsenio Hall much in the way a bully would to another kid at school because Arsenio refused to do a cheerleading or tap dance routine as part of their winning project.
‘Arsenio is the biggest girl on this show, so I don’t know why he doesn’t like tap dancing or wearing cheerleading outfits,’ O’Day said. ‘We all know he does it at home.’
You can read what GLSEN has to say about all of this in a story I posted over at Gay Star News.
Lesley Gore was just 16 when she recorded her very first record – a major hit called It’s My Party.
The song reached number 1, was nominated for a Grammy and sold more than 1 million copies.
More hits followed including You Don’t Own Me which spent three weeks at number 2 but was unable to dislodge the song in the top spot: The Beatles’I Want to Hold Your Hand.
Lesley, who turns 66 today, had many other hits during the 60s including She’s A Fool, Judy’s Turn to Cry, Maybe I Know, Look of Love, That’s the Way Boys Are and the Grammy-nominated Sunshine, Lollipops and Rainbows.
While Lesley’s recording career stalled at the end of the 1960s, she kept performing and was nominated for an Academy Award for co-writing the song Out Her On My Own with her brother, Michael Gore, for the movie Fame (See video below). The song lost to the theme song from the film which was also written by Michael.
It wasn’t until 2005 that Lesley publicly stated that she is a lesbian and has been with the same partner for more than two decades.
Hugh Jackman, a Tony winner for his triumphant performance in The Boy From Oz back in 2004, will receive a special award at this year’s Tonys.
Jackman,who returned to the Great White Way with Hugh Jackman, Back to Broadway, is being honored for his contributions to the Broadway community, both as a performer and humanitarian; his tireless dedication to charitable works of many types; and his personal generosity of spirit.
Although best known as the star of the X-Men feature film franchise, Jackman is a three-time Tony Awards host who appeared in the 2009 play A Steady Rain opposite Daniel Craig and will return to Broadway next year in Houdini.
He is currently shooting the feature film adaptation of Les Miserables.
I just love the way today’s Morning Man, model and actor Zac Titus, describes himself on his Twitter account: ‘I’m an Actor, Father and all around pretty swell guy. I love the outdoors and daily challenges.’
He could have added ‘and I’m extremely hot’ and no one would have argued one bit!
Already a top fitness model, Zac honed his acting chops by appearing in a series of short films before landing the lead in last year’s A Warm Wind.
In the film, Zac plays Buck, a Marine who has returned from the Iraq war with physical disabilities, PTSD, and no real family to care for him. His cousin David puts his own life aside to care for him and things get heated with family and friends who argue Buck is the government’s problem.
She was passed over for a Tony Award nomination for her performance in the musical Follies but Bernadette Peters will still be center stage at the ceremony honoring Broadway’s best next month.
Miss Peters, a seven-time Tony nominee and two-time winner, will receive the Isabelle Stevenson Award.
The award goes to an individual from the theater community who has made a substantial contribution of volunteered time and effort on behalf of one or more humanitarian, social service or charitable organizations.
Peters, whose Broadway hits include Annie Get Your Gun, Sunday in the Park With George, Song and Dance, and Gypsy, starred in the revival of Follies last year. She earned raves for taking over the lead in A Little Night Music from Catherine Zeta-Jones in 2010.
Oh God, this is about the most sickening thing I’ve come across in awhile.
So we wonder why gay or transgender kids want to kill themselves?
It’s because of people like Sean Harris, senior pastor of Berean Baptist Church in Fayettesville, North Carolina.
Harris should be banned from his church for advocating violence against children who may not fit into the gender roles their parents would like them to.
He said during his Sunday sermon: “So your little son starts to act a little girlish when he is four years old and instead of squashing that like a cockroach and saying, ‘Man up, son, get that dress off you and get outside and dig a ditch, because that is what boys do,’ you get out the camera and you start taking pictures of Johnny acting like a female and then you upload it to YouTube and everybody laughs about it and the next thing you know, this dude, this kid is acting out childhood fantasies that should have been squashed.’
No one booed, no one protested. They just laughed nervously.
He had more to say: “Dads, the second you see your son dropping the limp wrist, you walk over there and crack that wrist. Man up. Give him a good punch. Ok? You are not going to act like that. You were made by God to be a male and you are going to be a male. And when your daughter starts acting too butch, you reign her in. And you say, ‘Oh, no, sweetheart. You can play sports. Play them to the glory of God. But sometimes you are going to act like a girl and walk like a girl and talk like a girl and smell like a girl and that means you are going to be beautiful. You are going to be attractive. You are going to dress yourself up.’”
In case parents in attendance thought the pastor’s advice was too extreme, he assured them it is not: You say, “Can I take charge like that as a parent?” Yeah, you can. You are authorized. I just gave you a special dispensation this morning to do that.”
The Tony Award nominations were announced this morning and Cynthia Nixon got a nod for her performance as a woman dying of cancer in Wit.
It’s the third nomination for the Sex and the City alum who won in 2006 for Rabbit Hole.
Nixon’s competition is Stockard Channing (Other Desert Cities) and Linda Lavin (The Lyons) as well as Nina Arianda (Venus in Fur) and Tracie Bennett (End of the Rainbow).
There may be other openly gay nominees in the major categories but I’m just not aware of them. Please feel free to point others out!
One openly gay star who did not make the cut was Ricky Martin in Evita. The superstar, making his first Broadway appearance since 1996′s Les Miserables, has been nominated for a Drama Desk Award for best actor in musical so a Tony nod was somewhat expected. His leading lady, Elena Roger, was also snubbed but their co-star Michael Cerveres was nominated in the featured role in a musical category for his performance as Juan Peron.
Staunch LGBT ally Judith Light earned herself a nomination in the featured actress in a play category for her acclaimed performance in Other Desert Cities. She will compete against Linda Emond (Death of a Salesman), Spencer Kayden (Don’t Dress for Dinner), Celia Keenan-Bolger (Peter and the Starcatcher) and Condola Rashad (Stick Fly).
Fans of NBC’s Smash will be happy to know that Christian Borle, who plays gay composer Tom Levitt, was nominated for featured actor in a musical for his performance in Peter and the Starcatcher.
“It’s been an awfully nice morning!” Borle told BroadwayWorld.com. “I’m happy and just so very proud of the show. It’s been a few years leading up to now. This is just enormously gratifying.”
Borle had previously been nominated for Legally Blonde.