Saying "we are not done fighting," Rick Santorum told reporters "this presidential race is over for me and we will suspend campaign effective today." Santorum did not endorse Mitt Romney.
Romney released a statement following the announcement: "Senator Santorum is an able and worthy competitor, and I congratulate him on the campaign he ran. He has proven himself to be an important voice in our party and in the nation. We both recognize that what is most important is putting the failures of the last three years behind us and setting America back on the path to prosperity."
Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...
The L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center is protesting the publishing of the names and photos of 18 men arrested in an undercover sex sting at a Manhattan Beach men's room earlier this month, the L.A. Times reports:
Jim Key, chief spokesman for the Gay & Lesbian Center, said the Manhattan Beach Police Department could have worked with the center to try to stop men from meeting in the restroom, located beside the beach at the foot of Marine Avenue. Key said the Los Angeles Police Department took the public education approach, rather than mass arrests, to cut down on a public sex problem at Griffith Park.
Darrel Cummings, the center’s chief of staff, said news organizations should use more discretion before identifying suspects in what he called a victimless crime. “Naturally we don’t condone illegal activity of any kind,” Cummings said in a statement, “but these men haven’t been proven guilty and historically, charges such as those leveled against them have involved police entrapment. Publishing their photos serves no purpose other than to humiliate and destroy their lives.”
The Center suggested names and mugshots were released because double standards were applied due to the same-sex nature of the incidents:
Key argued that some big-city police departments are less likely to release photos and that Manhattan Beach should exercise more discretion. Among the media that displayed some, or all, of the photos were the Torrance-based Daily Breeze newspaper; the alternative LA Weekly newspaper; CBS2, KCAL9, NBC4 and KTLA, the latter owned by Tribune Co., which also owns the Los Angeles Times.
Manhattan Beach Arrest 18 in Sex Sting [tlrd]
They always warn you to pay attention while you're texting and walking, and well, this just proves that point.
Happened in La Crescenta, near L.A. this morning.
Check it out, AFTER THE JUMP...
NOM Expands Failing Starbucks Boycott to Countries Where Homosexuality is Stigmatized or Criminalized
The National Organization for Marriage (NOM) started a boycott of Starbucks back in March after confronting the company's chairman and CEO Howard Schultz at the annual shareholders meeting about Starbucks' inclusive policies toward LGBT people and its support of marriage equality.
Since then, the company has seen a groundswell of support from the LGBT community and its allies including a petition with 643,838 signatures (at this posting) thanking the company. Its stock has risen, and the Schultz reports that they have not seen any negative effect of the NOM boycott.
Maybe that's why NOM is making a desperate attempt to expand its boycott internationally, into countries where homosexuality is either heavily stigmatized, or criminalized:
In our first week, we gained 25,000 pledge signers in the U.S. alone; today we go international, expanding DumpStarbucks.com campaigns into Mandarin, Arabic, Turkish, Spanish, and Bahala (one of the chief languages of Indonesia)," announced NOM President Brian Brown. "DumpStarbucks.com online ads will also start running in Egypt, Beijing, Hong Kong, the Yunnan region of China, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Oman and Kuwait."
"What happens in Seattle won't to stay in Seattle," Brown (pictured) continued. "By making gay marriage core to his brand, Starbucks CEO Howard Schulz is telling millions of customers and partners who support traditional marriage in the Middle East, China, South America and North America that they aren't truly part of the Starbucks community."
Edwin Peacock, a Republican candidate for Congress in North Carolina, spoke out against Amendment One, which would ban same-sex marriage, civil unions, and domestic partnerships, and is appearing on the ballot there May 8.
Let me see your Peacock, AFTER THE JUMP...
Earlier today, Protect All NC Families released an ad featuring former Charlotte Mayors Harvey Gantt and Richard Vinroot speaking out against the discriminatory measure.
Madonna's MDNA continues to break records:
After a promising start, topping the Billboard 200 chart in its first week with 359,000 copies sold, Madonna's MDNA suffered an 88% drop in sales to 46,000, which sets the record for biggest second week drop in history. Many are questioning whether the option for fans to purchase the album as part of a tour ticket package skewed the initial numbers reported by Billboard Magazine. With 185,000 copies sold as part of this deal, only 179,000 can constitute individual album sales. Had these been the final numbers reported, the album wouldn't have topped the US charts in its first week after all.
A new behind-the-scenes clip on Madonna's 'Truth or Dare' fragrance commercial, AFTER THE JUMP...