When Queen Latifah said at Long Beach Pride last month that she was thrilled to be among “her people,” she wasn’t referring to gays and lesbians apparently.
Some chose to interpret the comment as her way of coming out. Latifah tells Entertainment Weekly: ‘That definitely wasn’t the case.”
“I’ve never dealt with the question of my personal life in public,” she added. “It’s just not gonna happen.”
Okay, I stick to my stance that it is up to an individual – famous or non-famous – if and when they decide to come out.
But Latifah might want to stay away from headlining LGBT pride events from now on because if she is lesbian – as is widely presumed – she’s not showing a lot of pride and is sort of dancing around the edges.
It’s begun to annoy me.
But she says she loves her gay fans who will no doubt want to check her out in the upcoming Lifetime remake of Steel Magnolias.
“I know that the most important thing and the only thing I have to give is love. When people are going through hatred and bullying, the biggest thing to fight that is love,” she says. “So that’s all I encouraged my audience to do that night: to share their light and share their love. Period.”
Okay, this is the last preview I’m going to have of Oprah Winfrey’s interview with Neil Patrick Harris and David Burtka because it airs tomorrow night on OWN and you can just watch it yourself!
Oprah asked the couple about their twins Gideon and Harper and how they were conceived.
Oprah: Have you all thought about what you are going to tell Harper and Gideon about having two daddies and not two mommies and the first time they come home and say, whoever their friend is, ‘They have a mommy why don’t I?’
Neil: We’re going to tell them information. I want them to have information. And I think the way that they were brought into this world was very unique and weirdly scientific and the technology involved in it I think is remarkable. But it came because we really, really wanted kids. Like we really had thought it through, financially, emotionally, relationship wise, like we didn’t just accidentally get pregnant and decide that now we need to make this work. These kids come into our world with nothing but love…
Oprah: Didn’t know the egg donor.
Neil: The donor’s anonymous.
David: But we saw a video of her and read extensive history on medical…
Oprah: ..on the donor?
David: Both of them, really
Oprah: So the surrogate was not the donor
David: No, she was more like the oven
Oprah: She was the oven
David: Two embryos, two eggs, one of mine, one of his and two took
Neil: We lucked out, boy. … And they are super healthy and happy.
As of Friday, the video had been viewed by more than 500,000 people on YouTube.
It shows Pastor Jeff Sangl and his congregation cheering wildly after the performance.
Now the church has tried to quell the uproar by posting the following message on its website: ‘The Pastor and members of Apostolic Truth Tabernacle do not condone, teach, or practice hate of any person for any reason. We believe and hope that every person can find true Bible salvation and the mercy and grace of God in their lives.’
It also states: ‘We are a strong advocate of the family unit according to the teachings and precepts found in the Holy Bible. We believe the Holy Bible is the Divinely-inspired Word of God and we will continue to uphold and preach that which is found in scripture.’
President Barack Obama, who made history by becoming the first sitting US President to support same-sex marriage, has issued a proclamation for LGBT Pride Month which is in June.
Here it is in its entirety:
From generation to generation, ordinary Americans have led a proud and inexorable march toward freedom, fairness, and full equality under the law — not just for some, but for all. Ours is a heritage forged by those who organized, agitated, and advocated for change; who wielded love stronger than hate and hope more powerful than insult or injury; who fought to build for themselves and their families a Nation where no one is a second-class citizen, no one is denied basic rights, and all of us are free to live and love as we see fit.
The lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT)community has written a proud chapter in this fundamentally American story. From brave men and women who came out and spokeout, to union and faith leaders who rallied for equality, toactivists and advocates who challenged unjust laws and marched on Washington, LGBT Americans and allies have achieved what once seemed inconceivable. This month, we reflect on their enduring legacy, celebrate the movement that has made progress possible, and recommit to securing the fullest blessings of freedom for all Americans.
Since I took office, my Administration has worked to broaden opportunity, advance equality, and level the playing field for LGBT people and communities. We have fought to secure justice for all under the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr.,Hate Crimes Prevention Act, and we have taken action to end housing discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. We expanded hospital visitation rights for LGBT patients and their loved ones, and under the Affordable Care Act, we ensured that insurance companies will no longer be able to deny coverage to someone just because they are lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender. Because we understand that LGBT rights are human rights, we continue to engage with the international community in promoting and protecting the rights of LGBT persons around the world. Because we repealed “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” gay, lesbian, and bisexual Americans can serve their country openly, honestly, and without fear of losing their jobs because of whom they love. And because we must treat others the way we want to be treated, I personally believe in marriage equality for same-sex couples.
More remains to be done to ensure every single American is treated equally, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. Moving forward, my Administration will continue its work to advance the rights of LGBT Americans. This month, as we reflect on how far we have come and how far we have yet to go, let us recall that the progress we have made is built on the words and deeds of ordinary Americans. Let us pay tribute to those who came before us, and those who continue their work today; and let us rededicate ourselves to a task that is unending — the pursuit of a Nation where all are equal, and all have the full and unfettered opportunity to pursue happiness and live openly and freely.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim June 2012 as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month.
I call upon the people of the United States to eliminate prejudice everywhere it exists, and to celebrate the great diversity of the American people.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this first day of June, in the year of our Lord two thousand twelve, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-sixth.
I wonder if birthday boy Andy Cohen will be getting a kiss today from Lance Bass! (Read all about THAT here).
Andy turns 43 today and it’s safe to say that he is currently riding biggest wave of professional success of his career. He’s now hosting Watch What Happens Live four nights a week on Bravo and his memoir, Most Talkative, has just been released. I just got a copy last weekend and will be cracking it open soon!
Originally posted on June 5, 2009 – updated with some additional photos
Jan-Michael Gambill, who turned 32 years old this week, was once ranked as high as 14th in the world in men’s tennis and had wins over former #1 players Roger Federer, Pete Sampras, Andre Agassi, Lleyton Hewitt and Carlos Moya.
But his unique playing style – a two-handed forehand and backhand, only took him so far including three tournament wins and a quarterfinal finish at Wimbledon. Now he is all but retired from tennis and is taking advantage of those God-given good looks of his as a model.
Even when he was still on the tennis tour, Jan-Michael was one of the most buffed players around with abs you could grate cheese on! One year when I was at the UCLA tournament, I got there early to watch the players practice and there was this glorious blonde man practicing, shirtless, on the stadium court. I did what any self-respecting gay man with a camera would do:sat down and shot half a roll of film of this absolute hottie.
Looking at these photos, I’m sure you understand why.
Okay, I’m happy to see our Will Horton getting so much screen time on Days of Our Lives in recent weeks but I’m not fond of a storyline that has him involved with the evil Stefano DeMira.
Will has lost his job with EJ because he betrayed him for Stefano and now he wants to kill the old man.
Will already shot EJ in the head some time ago and now the writers have him acting all homicidal again? I don’t like it.
It seems clear that someone is going to kill Stefano (thankfully – no character should be allowed to get away with all he has done and be allowed to escape punishment). but it appears that Will’s plans are thwarted by his dad. It’s comical. Will walking around with a gun in a brown paper bag.
In these clips from the past few days, Will is reconciling with Sami then he’s getting fired by EJ then he’s getting a gun then he’s saving Gabi from her ‘stalker’ then he’s having coffee with his grandmother but squirming because he wants to go off and kill Stefano.
Good grief. Give the poor boy a break and let him meet a nice boy already!
It was 25 years ago today that Barney Frank became the first openly gay member of the US House of Representatives.
He talked with MSNBC’s Laurence O’Donnell about the milestone and remembered a time back in 1987 when he was afraid that after coming out, people wouldn’t vote for him.
Frank persevered and is retiring at the end of the current session after more than three decades in the U.S. House. During that time, he has seen a shift in the public’s views on homosexuality.
‘There’s been a great progress made on diminishing prejudice and hate in the country as a whole,’ Frank said. ‘Unfortunately, it’s become partisan. The Democrats have gotten better at an even faster rate than the country but the Republicans have regressed. I look back kind of nostalgically to a degree of bipartisan encouragement I got then that sadly I couldn’t count on today.’
In fact, after Frank came out, he said it was then high-ranking Republican senators Alan Simpson and Warren Rudman who were the first to offer their support.
In recent years, Republicans as a party have largely opposed LGBT equality including gay marriage and the ability for gay and lesbians to serve openly in the US military.
Frank said that ‘reality is defeating prejudice’ when it comes to gays getting married and serving in the military because doomsday scenarios painted by opponents have not come to pass.
The 71-year-old congressman is himself getting married next month.
‘Never thought the day would come when I would be able to do that,’ Frank told O’Donnell.
When Frank came out in 1987, he said then: “What I thought was going to be a pretty tough time turned out to be a surprisingly easy one. … On the other hand, I feel kind of funny. It’s a little late in life to become any kind of sex symbol.”
First Lady Michelle Obama has answered a series of questions submitted to her via Twitter on including one about her husband’s recent endorsement of gay marriage.
The questioner thanks President Barack Obama for his support and wanted to know about the First Family’s discussions about marriage equality.
‘For Barack and me, it really comes down to the values of fairness and equality that we want to pass down to our girls,’ Mrs. Obama said in a YouTube video. ‘I mean, these are basic values that kids learn at a very young age and that we encourage them to apply in all areas of their lives.’
She added: ‘In a country where we teach our children that everyone is equal under the law, discriminating against same-sex couples just isn’t right. So it’s as simple as that. … We’re proud to have your support.’
To read more and to see the video of Mrs. Obama answering this and other questions, go to Gay Star News.
The gifted actor not only brings his outstanding one man show to Outlaugh 2012 which kicks off tonight, but he’s also part of the ensemble cast of Streep Tease which will have two performances during the festival.
David Dean Bottrell Makes Love: A One Man Show will take place on Sunday, June 10 and Saturday, June 23 while performances of Streep Tease will be held on Friday, June 15 and Saturday, June 23.
Streep Tease is an evening of Meryl Streep monologues performed by an all-male cast. The most memorable films of the great Streep are given a new interpretation on stage. The show is a real tribute to the quality and the variety of roles the 17-time Oscar nominee (and three-time winner!) has had throughout her unparalleled career. [Here is a LINK to my review from a few years ago]
Bottrell does the role of Karen Blixen from Out of Africa in the show and turns the whole thing into a hilarious tour-de-force and actually manages to act out the entire plot on about six minutes.
Best known for his recurring role as the psychotic Lincoln Meyer ABC’s on Boston Legal, Bottrell’s one-man show is a revelation. It’s a brilliantly written series of monologues about love – all kinds of love – from romantic love to parental love to friendship love and more. [Read my previous post about the show HERE].
Other shows include Drew Droege’s Good Evening America (June 18) and Diana Yanez’sFag Queen on June 15.
Banfield’s comment came during an interview with Kansas Pastor Curtis Knapp lit up the Twitterverse and she quickly became the target of a lot of criticism. Knapp believes the federal government should put all gays and lesbians to death.
During Friday’s edition of CNN’s Early Start, which she co-anchors, Banfield tried to diffuse the controversy: ‘… In no way did I ever want to suggest that being gay is a choice. It is not. And I probably used the word ‘lifestyle choice – not what I meant to say at all. Being gay is not a choice.’
Josh Dixon hopes to become the first openly gay gymnast to represent the United States at the Summer Olympics.
A graduate of Stanford University, Dixon won the floor exercise and high bar events at The Men’s Qualifier in Colorado Springs last month and finished second overall in a field of 72 competitors.
This qualified Dixon for the 2012 USA Gymnastics national championships, in St. Louis, June 7-10. The top 15 finishers will go on to compete in the Olympic Trials which will take place from June 28-July 1.
In a recent interview with Outsports.com, Dixon said he has not had a single negative response “in any way, shape or form.” If anything, the only homophobia he has encountered has been from within himself. He acknowledges he once felt internal pressure about being a gay man in what some label the “gay sport” of gymnastics. He didn’t want to fall into a stereotype. But he’s come to embrace it, and he says his sexual orientation now makes him stand out more at the elite level.
This is the third video to emerge in recent weeks showing rampant homophobia among some churches in the US.
This one features a toddler standing in front of an Indiana church congregation singing an anti-gay song.
It has gone viral and now members say they are receiving death threats.
The song performed at the alter of Apostolic Truth Tabernacle in Greensburg, Indiana, included these lyrics: “The Bible’s right, somebody’s wrong. The Bible’s right, somebody’s wrong. Romans one, twenty six and twenty seven; Ain’t no homos gonna make it to Heaven.”
The congregation can be heard erupting in cheers after the performance by the 3-year-old boy.
TMZ.com reports that church members say Pastor Jeff Sangl received a death threat at home and is worried about his safety.
Church members interviewed by TMZ continue to stand by the message of the song and their reaction to it.
Said one: ‘The people who are upset just don’t read the word of God. If we don’t teach the children the truth early they will never learn.’
It’s the One North Carolina pastor advocated putting all gays and lesbians behind an electric fence while another suggested parents ‘punch’ their sons if they act gay.
OWN has released a preview of Oprah’s Next Chapter which debuts on Sunday night and features Miss Winfrey’s interview with Neil Patrick Harris and David Burtka.
This portion is so interesting because we’ve never heard Neil so open and honest about his early days as a new dad to their 18-month old twins, Harper and Gideon:
Oprah: Was one of you more maternal?
David: That would be me. For sure.
Neil: Yeah I didn’t love the first 6-9 months.
Oprah: You didn’t’?
Neil: No. And I struggled with it a lot.
Oprah: You did?
Neil: Like in therapy with my own therapist.
Oprah: I’m so happy to hear you admit that because that is my, you know, I have God children and I’m like, ‘I’ll see them when they’re two.’
Neil: Well that’s just it when they are little and they are just crying then I didn’t know what’s wrong, and I try to soothe you and you’re still crying and I know that he’s more maternal and is much more intuitive with that, so I would pass off and then like, fix the crib, or like, clean the dishes or, I’d do my work. I wouldn’t just vanish, but I would try to provide but I didn’t feel like I was bonding with them.
Oprah: Oh interesting.
Neil: Which was ok, because I still feel like my strengths will come when it’s like, ‘Papa, let’s build a fort.’ And I love forts, let’s do that! But I need to know that they want to build a fort.
Oprah: When they can talk!
David: Yeah, when they can communicate.
Neil: Yeah, or tell me what’s wrong or have a conversation. I think that that’s where my strength’s will come and be more in the forefront.
Oprah: Do you want more kids? Or is two enough?
Neil: Oh don’t start with this conversation.
The couple also opens up about what it was like for them growing up gay, Harris’s decision to come out in Hollywood and its impact on his career, and raising children in a household with two fathers.
They share the private struggles in their relationship as Burtka, both a trained chef and actor, says it isn’t easy being in a relationship where one person is more famous and successful than the other. Neil speaks openly about the stress of living in Hollywood and the pressure of knowing the entire world is watching their family to see if they can go the distance.
During CNN’s Early Start this morning, co-anchor Ashleigh Banfield challenged Kansas Pastor Curtis Knapp, who recently called for the government to kill gays and lesbians.
But during the interview with a controversial figure, Banfield caused a controversy of her own as she tried to condemn Knapp’s comment that ‘we punish pedophilia, we punish incest, we punish polygamy and various things. It’s only homosexuality that is lifted out as an exemption.’
Banfield took issue with his attempt to compare homosexuality to pedophilia and incest and said: ‘Pedophilia is not by choice, last I checked. … When he says ‘they punish incest and pedophilia,’ please. Those things are often not by choice and are crimes. Homosexuality is a lifestyle choice by people. It is voluntary.’
The group Media Matters for Equality says Banfield ended up doing a lot more harm than good.
‘A person’s sexual orientation is not a ‘lifestyle choice’ or voluntary – it is an immutable part of their identity,’ the group says on its website. ‘In her attempt to mock Knapp’s extreme anti-gay remarks, Banfield ended up reinforcing one of the right’s most damaging myths about LGBT people.’
These days, Chely Wright isn’t often seen at major country music events. She tells CBS This Morning says since she came out, she’s experienced a subtle rejection by the industry establishment.
“As my friend said, ‘I don’t think (the rejection is) going to be fire and brimstone, I think they’re going to freeze her out.’”
“It’s not my belief that I should be performing on every awards show. … Now it’s the new Taylor Swift and Carrie Underwood and Lady Antebellum, that’s a natural part of entertaining. (But) there’s an institutionalized friendship within country music, once you’re in, once you’re one of us, you’re always invited to certain things to present or be a part of it or chair a committee for the Country Music Hall of Fame, which I used to do things like that.”
She added: “And so, it’s…a rejection mostly because I would like to hear a country music artist, the big ones, not just say, ‘Well, I like Chely. I like her even though she’s gay.’ I need a country artist who is a big deal, like Jay-Z in his community; He came forward and said, ‘I believe in equality for all.’ I’m struggling because I have not heard that from the big stars in country music.”
If you watch The CW series Nikita, then you are familiar with the handsome Dillon Casey who plays Navy Seal Sean Pearce on the show.
Torchwood fans no doubt remember him from a steamy guest shot he did that included a very steamy one night stand with John Barrowman’s character (see video below!)
Or you saw him in the Channing Tatum flick The Vow earlier this year or on one of his many TV guest spots on such shows as Warehouse 13, The Vampire Diaries and Skins.
But I remember Dillon from back in 2008 when I did a little interview with him at a Daytime Emmys pre-party. He was one of the stars of the series MVPs which was airing on SoapNET and I got a little bitchy in my write-up because I thought his answers were a little too flippant.
Well, I didn’t expect to get an email from him after that apologizing: This stuff gets overwhelming sometimes, and ít’s all new to me, so sometimes you don’t realize how you’re coming across. I didn’t mean to be a jerk and I feel terrible for it.”
After that, I became not only a fan of Dillon Casey the actor, but also of Dillon Casey the man.