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07/25/2014

Miami-Dade County Judge Rules Florida's Gay Marriage Ban Unconstitutional

Florida

A judge in Miami-Dade County has dealt another blow to Florida's ban on gay marriage, NBC South Florida reports:

A Miami-Dade judge has ruled in favor of gay marriage, saying the ban violates the 14th Amendment. The judge said Florida's constitutional ban "offends basic human dignity."

Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Sarah Zabel has stayed the order, meaning it wouldn't take immediate effect pending an appeal.

Wrote Zabel in the ruling:

In 1776, our Nation's Founders went to war in pursuit of a then-novel, yet noble, goal: the creation of a government that recognizes its people are "endowed . . . with certain inalienable rights" and that all are equal in the eyes of the law. THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE, para. 2 (U.S. 1776). Unfortunately, history shows that prejudice corrupted the implementation of these ideals and that the corrective wheels of justice turn at a glacial pace. Slavery, for instance, plagued this nation from the time of its birth, and it took a bloody civil war, nearly one hundred years later, to break free from this malady. Segregation, though, took slavery's place, and it was not until the 1960s that we rid ourselves of this similarly horrible disease. Women too, had to fight for equality, and it was not until 1920 that they were first able to vote. Nevertheless, like race, it was not until the social unrest of the 1960s that gender equality had any meaning. The Native Americans also faced rampant discrimination until the 1960s and 1970s as well.

Notably absent from this protracted march towards social justice was any progress for the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender community until quite recently. However, as evidenced by the avalanche of court decisions unanimously favoring marriage equality, the dam that was denying justice on this front has been broken. The Court, nonetheless, recognizes that its decision today is divisive and will cause some Floridians great discomfort. This decision, though, "is not made in defiance of the great people of [Florida] or the [Florida] Legislature, but in compliance with the United States Constitution and Supreme Court precedent. Without a rational relation to a legitimate governmental purpose, state-imposed inequality can find no refuge in our United States Constitution." De Leon, 975 F. Supp. 2d at 665-66. ...

The ruling:

14-1661 Decision by Equality Case Files

Posted Jul. 25,2014 at 6:16 PM EST by | Permalink | Comments (19)


Movie Review: Richard Linklater's 'Boyhood' Is A Beautiful, Naturalistic 12-Year Journey

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BY JOSEPH EHRMAN-DUPRE

Boyhood is a concept film, but it does not feel like one. Filmed over 12 consecutive years, using the same actors to portray the same characters as they age naturally, Richard Linklater’s newest feature is a structured journey through time. The best part about it, though, is that the nearly three hour, briskly paced film feels unstructured and unrestrained, a listless walk (and sometimes run) alongside Mason (Ellar Coltrane, bravely putting his most awkward years on display). 

Boyhood3The narrative of the film, befitting its sprawling time frame, is difficult to describe succinctly. It feels as though a great deal happens, and also as if nothing happens, a mirror held up to the swiftly moving complexity of lives that sometimes feel dull and plodding. We do get to know several characters well along the way, though. Mason’s single mom (Patricia Arquette) has bad luck choosing men and proves alternately caring and prickly toward her son and daughter, Samantha (Lorelei Linklater, the director’s daughter and a natural comedian). Their dad, (Ethan Hawke, who grows more handsome as the film progresses) when we first meet him, has been largely absent, but, when he decides to come around, figures as an exciting and likable savior from the mundanity of everyday life. 

As a child, Mason and his sister go bowling with dad; a neighborhood friend shows off a Victoria’s Secret catalogue and they ogle the women inside; mom remarries a psychology professor and goes back to school herself. In his early teenage years, Mason drinks his first beer and alludes to several girlfriends (“We have nothing in common,” he laments to his dad) and his mom undergoes yet another divorce. High school brings a focused interest in photography, first time employment, a serious girlfriend, and the beginnings of collegiate aspiration. Cultural artifacts, from Obama-Biden campaign signs to Harry Potter midnight release parties, fill in the nooks and crannies.

Boyhood4It is incredible, really, just how much life Linklater brings into focus, and how easily enjoyable the film remains throughout. He avoids ticking off easy categories of development, opting instead for intimate scenes of sometimes awkward dialogue between members of the family, their friends, and acquaintances. Mom bears the heaviest emotional load, dad remains aloof and carefree, and the kids seem to be doing exactly what they would be doing when they aren’t shooting a film. It is clear that Linklater collaborated with his actors on the screenplay, which never feels forced.

The film is shot in a naturalistic style as well, unconcerned with picturesque beauty--save for when the characters themselves notice it--and captivated by the constantly shifting faces of Mason, his parents, and his sister. Also changing is the soundtrack, an audible timeline for those who will recognize minute evolutions in popular music across the twelve-year progression. Linklater thankfully never keeps viewers guessing about Mason’s age, though, slyly editing between years in a way that never interrupts, and sometimes enhances, the narrative thrust. When mom meets the professor she will marry, for instance, he suggestively intones that their kids should have a play date while Mason looks on, seeing his mom blush perhaps for the first time; we cut at least one year into the future and Mason, Samantha, and two other children are bouncing on a trampoline in the backyard of a comparatively palatial residence. Mom and her new hubby are just returning from their honeymoon, and the audience is instantly aware of what sort of change has occurred.

Boyhood is a joyride, really, a pleasure cruise that left me smiling and feeling, well, alive. It resonates on such a deep level because it is so deeply personal, a collaboration between artists who spent over a decade developing characters and getting to know each other just as a family does. It has imperfections: the children’s acting in particular can feel wooden, we miss all the times that are left out, and there could be more moments of driving dramatic force. But after leaving the theater, I found myself forgiving those flaws entirely. Perhaps it is because of Linklater’s ambition and the relative aplomb with which he pulled off his vision, or perhaps it is because in life itself, flaws abound. 

Flaws and all, Boyhood is sure to be one of the most unique and fulfilling cinematic experiences you’ll experience anytime soon.

Boyhood is now open in theaters nationwide. 

Check out a trailer for the film, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Continue reading "Movie Review: Richard Linklater's 'Boyhood' Is A Beautiful, Naturalistic 12-Year Journey"

Posted Jul. 25,2014 at 5:30 PM EST by in Ethan Hawke, Film, Film and TV, News, Video | Permalink | Comments (5)


Towleroad Guide to the Tube #1594

EDIE WINDSOR: Part 3 of Marriage Equality USA's interview.

NEWFOUNDLAND: Iceberg collapse tidal wave frightens boaters.

NICK JONAS: "Chains".

THIS WEEK: In unnecessary censorship.

For recent Guides to the Tube, click HERE.

Posted Jul. 25,2014 at 4:30 PM EST by in Towleroad Guide to the Tube | Permalink | Comments (1)


Jake Wilson Wants You To Rub That ‘SPF’ On: VIDEO

Spf

Jake Wilson is back with another musical short, this time dishing up a Weird Al-esque parody of Ariana Grande and Iggy Azalea’s summer smash, “Problem”, re-named “SPF,” that also features Rumer Willis and Constantine Rousouli. As you get ready to spend your weekend worshipping the sun, take a moment to remind yourself of the virtues of using protection.

Watch Wilson and some shirtless friends rub on some SPF, AFTER THE JUMP…

You can also see Wilson’s previous musical shorts HERE and HERE.

Spf2

Continue reading "Jake Wilson Wants You To Rub That ‘SPF’ On: VIDEO"

Posted Jul. 25,2014 at 3:00 PM EST by in Jake Wilson, Music, Music Video, News | Permalink | Comments (18)


News: David Tyree, Warwick Rowers, Sharknado, Florida, Henry Cavill

RoadDavid Tyree shuts off his Twitter.

RoadColorado appeals court denies bid to block gay marriages in Boulder county.

StripRoadThe case against Scott Lively, the graphic novel.

RoadTara Reid: A 'sharknado' could really happen.

RoadCrime Survey of England and Wales: 1/3 of gay and bisexual men did illegal drugs last year. "The Times reports drug use by gay and bisexual men was three times higher than for straight men and was higher in the majority of individual drugs consumed including cocaine, ecstasy, amphetamines and cannabis."

RoadDaniel Radcliffe say sobriety = good sex. “I’m one of the few people who seem to have had a really good first time,” he told Elle. “It was with somebody I’d gotten to know well. I’m happy to say I’ve had a lot better sex since then, but it wasn’t as horrendously embarrassing as a lot of other people’s were—like my friend who got drunk and did it with a stranger under a bridge.”

RoadThe Warwick Rowers are back and haven't found their clothes yet, thankfully.

CavillRoadHenry Cavill as a Jedi?

RoadGay couples deliver petitions to Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi's office: "On Thursday, same-sex couples walked into Bondi's Tallahassee office and delivered 7,000 petitions signed by Floridians asking her to 'stop wasting taxpayer resources defending the state's discriminatory exclusion of gay and lesbian couples from marriage.'"

RoadGay U.S. military spouses get a bit of protection in Italy: "A new agreement between the Defense Department and the Italian government will allow same-sex military spouses to move to U.S. bases in Italy as command sponsored dependents."

RoadUnearthed footprints suggest T Rex hunted in packs: "The ferocious beasts may have 'stuck together as a pack to increase their chances of bringing down prey and individually surviving,' said study co-author Richard McCrea, a curator at the Peace Region Palaeontology Center in Canada."

RoadImaginary conversations with Bradley Cooper.

Onesheet_hornsRoadDaniel Radcliffe grown some 'Horns' in new one-sheet.

RoadFeds to ban alcohol on some Fire Island beaches: "The ban will go into effect on Aug. 1 on federal lands in the Town of Islip between the communities of Atlantique and Corneille Estates. It's being enacted by the Fire Island National Seashore. The ban was prompted by alcohol-fueled parties on the beach."

RoadMichelangelo Signorile on the idiocy of the New York Giants hiring David Tyree: "It's time for David Tyree to take back every word he said and tell us of his amazing evolution to being a full-blown supporter of equality. If he can't do that, the Giants have to give him the boot if they and the NFL want to maintain any credibility and dignity."

RoadEmpire State Pride Agenda blasts Tyree hire: "The NFL, the New York Giants and all who represent those two brands have a responsibility to their players and to the millions of people who support their right to exist. They need to make decisions about who joins their ranks based on how they will best represent the players, the brand, the fans, the sport, and the values of the team’s home state. There’s no room for discrimination in that."

Posted Jul. 25,2014 at 3:00 PM EST by | Permalink | Comments (12)


Christopher Meloni's Dog Has A Mouthwatering View: PHOTO

Meloni2

Christopher Meloni (True Blood, Law & Order: SVU, Oz) has posted a photo to his Facebook that will have many fans saying, "woof!"

The actor shared the below image with the caption, "I will stare at your genitalia until u feed me.... #dogpsychology." No doubt, some humans would make a similar declaration were they fortunate to be in the same position as this canine. #humanpsychology

Dog

Posted Jul. 25,2014 at 2:15 PM EST by in Chris Meloni, News | Permalink | Comments (30)


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