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News: UCLA Taser, Jake and Reese, Penguins, Seattle Gays

road.jpg Gay group Soulforce launches letter-writing campaign to Ted Haggard: "This is obviously a moment of personal, familial, and professional crisis for Rev. Haggard. We want to make sure that the voices of intolerance and homophobia are not the only voices that he hears during this difficult time. Through the Soulforce web site, members of our community can share their own experiences and affirm that LGBT people can and do live lives filled with faith, love, and happiness." Pen a letter to Pastor Haggard here.

road.jpg SHOCK: UCLA student tasered by police for not showing ID. (via AmericaBlog)

road.jpg Fund set up to benefit Ted Haggard's gay escort Mike Jones.

road.jpg Gay penguin book And Tango Makes Three ruffling parents' feathers again: When it came to the point where the zookeeper saw that the penguins were in love, I redirected (my daughter). That was the end of the story for her."

road.jpg George Michael thanks nurses who cared for his dying mother with free concert: "Almost 10 years ago, during the last week of my mother's life, I told my friends and family that if I ever played my own concerts again, I would make sure to do a free one for NHS nurses. The nurses that helped my family at that time were incredible people, and I realised just how undervalued these amazing people are."

road.jpg Looking for some new threads? "The One" T-shirts designed by Steph & Alek at Oh La La will benefit people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHAs) in developing countries .

road.jpg Seattle has the second-highest amount of residents who identify as gay, lesbian, or bisexual: 12.9%. That's 57,900 people.

road.jpg Meet the cast of the Broadway version of Legally Blonde

Jakereeseroad.jpg Jake and Reese?

road.jpg Record shop Davey's Basement in small Michigan town boycotted after it sponsors Homecoming parade float for local high school's gay-straight alliance: "Ever since the parade, the record store’s business has been non-existent. Several of our regular customers, who previously ignored the fact that we carry gay pride stickers and other (similar) items, now have informed us that they will do everything in their power to boycott and hurt our business. We are now known amongst the town as the store that publicly ‘promotes queers.’ These ignorant people have been spreading vicious rumors about our store and a mass-scale boycott has come into effect, courtesy of these parade-goers. We cannot financially deal with this. We are struggling daily to even make a couple sales. This boycott is founded on ignorance, and because of it we literally will shut down in a matter of time. That is not the message we want to send to the community; that hatred and homophobia, if in the majority, will accomplish its intended destruction."

road.jpg Marc Jacobs still with boyfriend, and cleans up well!

road.jpg Larry King has never used the internet: "I wouldn’t love it. What do you punch little buttons and things?"

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  1. Amnesty International

    lists 90 cases where tasered people died from the use of 1 particular brand of taser.

    One police officer during a taser training experiment tells his experience of it and how it destroyed one of his vertabrets making it impossible for him to work as a polcie officer ever again

    1989 Canadian study found TASERs caused heart attacks in pigs with pacemakers

    A 1999 Department of Justice study found an electronic device weaker than the TASER can cause cardiac arrest in people with heart conditions

    A 2002 study by the British government concluded, "The high-power Tasers cannot be classed, in the vernacular, as 'safe.'"

    Most recent department of defense study shows According to media reports, the study actually found TASERs caused heart damage in pigs

    Until there is, Amnesty International has called for a moratorium on the use of stun weapons until a rigorous, independent study of their use and effects can be completed. Failing that, AI recommends law enforcement agencies establish policies limiting use to situations in which the weapons are an alternative to deadly force, and create mechanisms for oversight and accountability when officers violate these policies.

    Posted by: jimmyboyo | Nov 16, 2006 7:36:51 PM

  2. As a college student at a university where the police officers are "fully accredited" and "academy-trained" (they even get cars with lights and sirens!), this worries me a lot. For those of you who didn't read the Daily Bruin story, "the police confirmed he was a student." He had every right to be in that library.

    For those of you who didn't bother to read further, this from KTLA News: "A UCLA police spokeswoman says Mostafa Tabatabainejad..."


    "...went limp and resisted officers as they tried to escort him out of the Powell Library computer lab."

    Well, this complicates things a bit, doesn't it?

    Posted by: Thor | Nov 16, 2006 7:43:04 PM

  3. OK, I finally watched that video, and that makes me sick. While it is not possible to know the circumstances immediately preceeding what was captured on video -- and who knows? maybe the guy was being a total jerk off -- this is a public University! The guy is a student who pays to go there. It is a school policy, not the fucking law, to have a student ID on you. I am a UCLA grad and "hippy" (who, incidently, in answer to the obnoxious comment above, has managed to survive the mean streets of NYC for 15 years) and I can tell you the UCLA cops are NOT rent-a-cops by any means. They are a real police department for an urban campus community occupied by up to 40-50,000 people daily. The LAPD does not have jurisdiction on campus because it is state property. The UCLA PD do, however, give the LAPD a run for their money in the asshole department, and there has always been tension between the students and campus police. They routinely stop African-American students at random and ask for IDs.

    Regardless of the circumstances, this is not acceptable conduct, and those guys had better be investigated, and hopefully fired.

    Posted by: So Left I'm Right | Nov 16, 2006 7:52:09 PM

  4. Interesting. We may find out that this kid was up to no good. I also think that the slam of "rent-a-cops" may be a MITIGATING factor here - are campus cops trained for people being that resistant and unruly? Perhaps not. This may well have been an extreme case for them.

    Posted by: Antaeus | Nov 16, 2006 7:58:04 PM

  5. (german accent)..."Ve vant to vee your papers"

    shades of fascism past

    Maybe someday soon to solve this whole ID thing we will all have to start wearing colored triangles on our clothes so we can be identified by the police. Oh, maybe us gays for census purposes can wear pink triangles (sadly too many do not know the pink triangle came from the german concentration camps as a way to identify gay prisoners)

    Posted by: jimmyboyo | Nov 16, 2006 7:58:12 PM

  6. Re: UCLA

    What I'd like to ask is where are all the people who reasoned that "all Rodney King needed to do was to stop resisting...". Well, this little idealistic prick, like so many (but not all) college kids who think they are at the untouchable level of society got precisely to real world demo of the days we're living in. You need an ID everywhere theses days. Right or wrong, helpful or hindering, it isn't up for debate.

    He set his own table... let his dumbass feast up!

    Posted by: Maclimo | Nov 16, 2006 9:09:28 PM

  7. It doesn't matter how stupid you think he was. The issue is that the police are tasering him, and then expecting him to just get up and walk out.

    Posted by: anon | Nov 16, 2006 9:25:26 PM

  8. Wow, LA Cops being dicks, that's new. Sadly, there is no escuse, NONE, for their behavior. A student who is unarmed, sitting in a computer versus cops with weapons, it is inexcusable for them and quite frankly I have never been to any institution in which if a student doesn't have an idea requires police to escort them off the campus. As I have studied full time in various degrees at Stanford, Hamilton College, University of Rochester and Columbia I would be stunned, STUNNED if this ever happened. This fascist state initiated further with the Republikkklans/Bush agenda (hi, any one remember Bush signing away law a few weeks ago allowing anyone to be thrown in jail at any time for anything without due process?) is sickening and frightening...

    Posted by: Cory | Nov 16, 2006 10:05:17 PM

  9. oops, sorry, was watching Grey's Anatomy while typing, forgive the typos lol

    Posted by: Cory | Nov 16, 2006 10:06:16 PM

  10. Maclimo said

    "You need an ID everywhere theses days. Right or wrong, helpful or hindering, it isn't up for debate"

    Comisar Maclimo


    You see, in of the free, land of the brave, and YES!!! land of the indipendent always question everything = EVERYTHING is up for debate. EVERYTHING can and should be debated.

    If you want, you can go to the former USSR and try to recreate the old soviet system if you want. Here in america QUESTION and DEBATE EVERYTHING despite what Comisar Maclimo thinks.

    hell, America came about because our founding fathers DEBATED what was not up for debate according to King George.


    PS, please scroll up to the post I submited covering Amnesty International's info on the health dangers of Tasers.

    Posted by: jimmyboyo | Nov 16, 2006 10:12:44 PM

  11. My God....there are some sorry assholes posting here.
    If you would bother to read the story as well as watch the clip and then read the local news story, you will find that the young man was asked for his Bruin ID....he didn't have it, he was asked to leave. He finished his page, then was on his way out of the lab when the campus police arrived. He told them he was of them grabbed his arm and he told the cop to let go of him, then 2 other cops grabbed him, thats when the shouting started. He went limp and told them to let go of him and he would leave, instead they kept man handleing him and threatened to taser him...thats when he said **fuck you** and he got tasered, then got tasered 3 more times for refusing to stand up....which experts said was probably impossable for him to do on his own after the first tasering. He also told them, before the first tasering that he had a medical condition and one cop told him **tough shit**. After the first tasering, 11 people recorded what took place and all of them heard an officer tell by standers they would be tasered as well, when they told the officers what they did was wrong and asked for their badge numbers(which is proper procedure for anyone seeing a confrontation, by UCLA rules, so their can be an investigation), these cops knew they fucked up.
    UCLA may be a state school, but parents still pay upwards of 16,000.00 a year for their kids to attend.....heads are going to roll.....this boy was guilty of the crime of being Arab looking.

    Posted by: joshua | Nov 16, 2006 10:22:40 PM

  12. I think both the police and the student were in the wrong, more so the police I guess. The student should've gotten up, because he had no i.d. and was technically breaking policy, instead of partially causing a big mess. The police are at fault for using excessive force and should be reprimanded or even fired for their gross overuse of power. This situation could've been handled a lot better if the student hadn't been a little smartass and the police had adequate training.

    Posted by: Seann | Nov 16, 2006 10:28:05 PM

  13. Instead of a letter writing campaign, we should each send a few copies of BBM to Ted Haggard's church for their viewing pleasure. Maybe it will change a few minds.

    Posted by: Anon | Nov 16, 2006 10:29:15 PM

  14. Joshua

    Thanks for the info

    I want to go back to maclimo's "not up for debate"

    Well, slavery was the law of the land at one time in our history. Comisar maclimo would have said back then "NOT up for debate"

    Blacks and whites were not allowed to marry at one time in america. Comisar Maclimo would have said "Not up for debate"

    We as gay men and women were forbiden by law to have sex with each other....Comisar Maclimo would have said "Not up for debate"

    We as gay men and women are currentyly not allowed to marry our beloveds. Comisar Maclimo would say "Not up for debate"

    Any and all things in America are up for debate. That is the american way. The american way is to constantly DISAGREE with something and debate everything. We are probably the most contentious and debate loving group of people in the history of mankind. "Not up for debate" BULL SHI@. I say BULL SHI@ as a proud debate loving contentious American.

    Posted by: jimmyboyo | Nov 16, 2006 10:32:51 PM


    Posted by: A Ludwig | Nov 16, 2006 10:41:41 PM


    Posted by: Jacob Priluck | Nov 16, 2006 10:58:49 PM

  17. More american torturers.... not being able to stand up after getting tasered multiple times is now considered 'resisting and obstructing'. What next? Being dead is 'loitering'? And people wonder why the world HATES Americans as medieval barbarians?

    Contact information for UCLA's thugs.

    Chief of Police,
    Karl T. Ross

    John Adams

    Posted by: Eric O'Mallory | Nov 16, 2006 11:02:55 PM

  18. Fire them? hell no - JAIL THEM for willful torture!

    Posted by: Peter Vargan | Nov 16, 2006 11:05:53 PM

  19. Thank you Eric 'Omallory for the contact info.

    I put in Amnesty Internationals insistence that tasering even once is not acceptable except as an alternative to lethal force. I also mentioned that 90 deaths have been reported from 1 brand of tasers.

    Posted by: jimmyboyo | Nov 16, 2006 11:21:47 PM

  20. Joshua, Thank you for the update.

    Not all of that info was available via the links in this post - nor elsewhere (that I could find) - when this was first published here and I started responding. It seems the links and/or articles have been updated.

    "[He] was on his way out of the lab when the campus police arrived" is new info to me. If true, that changes things quite a bit. That was not what the initial reports showed or said at all.

    I am quite disturbed (and have been since the start) that bystanders were threatened with tasers. Obviosuly that's not right.

    Posted by: Rich | Nov 17, 2006 1:37:13 AM

  21. It seems to me that in the wake of so many men in high profile positions, including very conservative members of the clergy that have been “outed” as of late, that condemning homosexuality that these “Holy Bullies” attempt to do does not work and never will obviously in preventing or stopping homosexual behavior. All they need do is look around at those that are in their midst that are just hiding behind these trumped up studies that would want us to think otherwise. The ones that shout the loudest against us are so often, as WE all know, the ones that are hiding. For this reason I believe it is high time that the phenomenon of “the closet” needs to be addressed and understood. I believe it is essential to discuss “the closet” to provide the necessary context from which to view some of these scandals. The closet, meaning the emotional place where people hide their true sexual orientation from others, whether one is a man or woman. Particularly now however I am speaking of men at this time because I believe men use the closet even more often than woman because of societies more narrow view and expectations of what behaviors are considered acceptable and “normal” for men. This discussion needs to be civilized, our knee jerk reactions and judgments held in check. We need to discuss this subject with compassion because there is a lot of emotional pain involved in living in the closet. We have to discuss this with a very sincere desire to try and understand why so many men are seemingly suddenly becoming gay. Of course this is an impression to some but far frin the truth. These men have been living extremely lonely double lives, riddled with guilt in “the closet”. Woman can be tomboys much easier than men can be sissies. Of course not all gay men are effeminate by a long shot but that is a stereotypical image of gay men and therefore many men attempt to cover up any behaviors they may have and believe may bring unwanted suspicion onto them. Therefore men, whether they be gay or straight, will practice stereotypical masculine behaviors to thwart any suspicion out of fear and/or necessity. This is especially true if they feel pressure to do so to protect their careers, career advancement, fear of social denunciation or they have difficulties reconciling their religious views with their natural inner feelings and same sex attractions etc. These are however the most common reasons for men to join the astounding numbers of other men that are also hiding in the closet.

    The fear of being discovered can be enormous and absolutely terrifying. These men will often then do whatever they believe society expects from them. They will marry and have children out of desperation in an always unsuccessful attempt at suppressing these natural longings and hoping that they will eventually go away. Since we have very conservative members of the clergy who are also unable to control these powerful inner urgings we perhaps need to at least try and understand these powerful feelings of attraction that we all know very well and have all experienced ourselves whether toward the same sex or the opposite sex, it’s all still the same. To Gays these attractions feel perfectly normal and are. Would we rather they try and unsuccessfully continue to hide by getting married and have homosexual secret liaisons with men and feel terrible guilt in doing so. They will do their very best to compartmentalize their lives the best that they can. However I believe and have found while researching my book that the longer one stays in the closet the more damage is done. It is generally very difficult to compartmentalize ones life for long without some emotional problems begin developing in varying degrees and manifesting in a variety of ways. Many closeted men develop coping mechanisms such as addictive behaviors of all sorts whether they are alcoholism, prescription or non prescription drug abuse. They may develop addictions to pornography, sexual addiction or other self-destructive ways of acting out. Once again unfortunately the longer one stays in the closet there will then also generally be more victims because of their closeted lifestyle choice. This is the only place where the word choice can be used correctly within the context of this subject. They can either “choose” to live in the closet or “choose” to live out their truth of who they really are. The victims may be their wives and children, their friends, parents and siblings. All feeling like they have been betrayed and deceived when the closeted individuals true nature is discovered as it was for ex-governor of New Jersey, Mr. McGreevy, ex-congressmen Foley and now the president of the Evangelicals, to name just a few of the staggering number of men that have also been hiding their true selves. I feel very sad for the victims as well as I very much understand the humiliation, despair, and profound depression that the closeted individual feels that soon follows once that door to the closet is flung open. For some, the shame and fear is just too unbearable and suicide seems like the only alternative to ending their unbearable pain and shame.

    Society needs to take some responsibility with this matter of the closet by being more accepting of alternative lifestyles. Without the closet, try and imagine how much less pain many people and families would have to endure. Not only the ones that feel that living in the closet is their only alternative, but for the victims that find themselves feeling betrayed and the breaking up of families that soon follows. We as a culture have some soul searching to do on this matter and not be so self-righteous. There are a variety of ways of loving and living. We need to accept the fact, that which seems to be normal for some is not necessarily normal for all. However, as I said the closet can cause deep and very troubling emotional problems that can eventually manifest in abhorrent behaviors. However, because there is still such a stigma surrounding issues of sexuality yet in this day and age in our rather hypocritical puritanical society, cause many gays not to seek help concerning issues they may be struggling with from the appropriate professionals. I generally do not recommend clergy because it can cause further damage due to their religious agendas which can deepen one's guilt, shame and depression. This is a very complicated issue that society has to become more compassionate about or we will continue to shame many people with same sex attractions enough that will continue to inhibit many from being true to themselves from the beginning or it may prevent them from seeking the appropriate help for any specific personal issues in which they may be struggling with.
    Thank you, Aaron Fennville, Mi 49408

    Posted by: aaron jason silver | Nov 17, 2006 4:43:24 AM

  22. Hey,
    Just wanna say congratulations on the sucess of your blog im a big fan and so i just wanted to point out that if your gonna use stories from the UK please source news from anything BUT the Daily Mail, that paper in my county is aimed at right wing bigets, the kinda folks you campaign against on your site, so please dont use them in futere the less press they get the better.

    Posted by: Rob | Nov 17, 2006 4:46:34 AM

  23. omg - I'm almost in tears now. How dare those police officers taser someone - TWICE!!!


    We couldn't see what was going on the first time, but he was doing *nothing* to warrant a second taser. He wasn't fighting, kicking or anything. HOW DARE THEY?

    Posted by: Ryan | Nov 17, 2006 10:09:38 AM

  24. It appears to me that these UCLA campus policemen went overboard, forgetting common sense and decency, and will now be suspended, put under investigation and possibly fired. This situation could have been handled so easily. Karma is a bitch, though, and things now aren't pretty for anyone involved...the student or officers.

    All of this goes to prove that unbridled testosterone can get you into trouble more than one way.

    Posted by: JoeInSF | Nov 17, 2006 11:17:33 AM

  25. I'd love to throw some money in the general direction of Davey's Basement, but it seems that all the attention has brought down their server. Dang.

    Posted by: Andrew | Nov 17, 2006 12:48:11 PM

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