NEWS: George W. Bush To The Rescue, More Arrests In Russia, And A Long Goodbye To Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Brother of Gabriel Garcia Marquez publicly acknowledges that the author is suffering from dementia, and no longer writes:
"He has problems with his memory. Sometimes I cry because I feel like I'm losing him," he said.
... invited to talk about his relationship with Gabo, as the writer is affectionately known in Colombia, Jaime said he could not hold back from talking about his illness anymore.
"He is doing well physically, but he has been suffering from dementia for a long time," he said. "He still has the humour, joy and enthusiasm that he has always had."
Eight more gay activists arrested in St. Petersburg.
The New York Times on the fracturing of the "ex-gay" movement; and an interview with Exodus International's Alan Chambers:
Only a few years ago, Mr. Chambers was featured in advertisements along with his wife, Leslie, saying, “Change is possible.” But now, he said in the interview, “Exodus needs to move beyond that slogan.”
“I believe that any sexual expression outside of heterosexual, monogamous marriage is sinful according to the Bible,” Mr. Chambers emphasized. “But we’ve been asking people with same-sex attractions to overcome something in a way that we don’t ask of anyone else,” he said, noting that Christians with other sins, whether heterosexual lust, pornography, pride or gluttony, do not receive the same blanket condemnations.
CNN on the push to eliminate the United States' gay blood-donor ban:
... Since the 1980s, when the AIDS epidemic decimated their community, gay men -- or MSMs (men who have sex with men) as they are called by federal agencies -- have not been allowed to donate blood. In June, a group of 64 U.S. legislators led by Rep. Mike Quigley, D-Illinois, and Sen. John Kerry, D-Massachusetts, sent a letter to the Department of Health and Human Services encouraging it to move forward with a study that may lead to the end of the decades-old ban.
"This is a matter of life and death and we are turning away over 50,000 healthy men who want to donate blood," Quigley told CNN. "A straight person who has unsafe sex with multiple partners can give blood, and that creates a greater risk than a gay person in a monogamous relationship."
Obamafan serves the President eggs, bacon, toast, grits; dies happy.
Henceforth, 17 Magazine shall use only un-airbrushed, well-fed models.
The Guardian's Tom Shone goes gay for Magic Mike, and a lot of other movies, too:
The screen is an equal opportunity seducer – polymorphically perverse. If you are a man (or a woman) and you watch the famous scene in Notorious where Cary Grant nibbles Ingrid Bergman's ear while she is answering the phone, you don't feel two different things depending on which half of the screen you look at. I don't look at Bergman and go "yummy" and then look at Grant and go "shame about him." Such is the heat of the movie screen that every grain and pixel is suffused with longing. The fact is: I have spent as much time in the dark of the movie theatre watching men kiss and be kissed, and getting a kick out of it, as I have women.
Amazon to enter the smartphone market.
George W. Bush spent the 4th in Zambia:
He worked alongside other volunteers in Kabwe - Zambia's second-largest city - to renovate a health clinic which specializes in the early detection and treatment of cervical cancer.
“You're always the former president but I wanted to come here as a laborer...I do want to say that on this particular trip that myself and friends have left behind a clinic and hope to inspire others to come and refurbish clinics as well,” Bush said.
Bush is helping lead the fight against cervical cancer in his post-presidential years and has so far helped raise more than $85 million ...
Posted Jul. 7,2012 at 5:30 PM EST by Brandon K. Thorp in "Ex-Gays", AIDS/HIV, Amazon, Books, Gay Pride, George W. Bush, London, Russia, St. Petersburg, United Kingdom, Zambia | Permalink | Comments (41)
Thirty-two-year-old Filmmaker Jeremiah McDonald has been making movies for a long, long time. On his YouTube channel you may find, among other things, his nine-year-old self battling ghoulish puppets on Super8, and his re-enactment, at age 14-ish, of a critical scene from Lord of The Rings.
When he was 12, McDonald recorded one half of an interview to be conducted with his older self at some point in the future. That was 20 years ago; McDonald has now resumed the conversation. The results are fun. Watch AFTER THE JUMP ...
The Denver Sheriff's Department this week rolled out a new set of guidelines for dealing with gender-variant inmates. It's a long and subtle document that in no way qualifies as riveting reading. But it's heartening.
The new Denver policy is designed to help law enforcement account for a wide variety of factors when determining where to lodge newly-arrived inmates -- and, acknowledging the vastness of the gender spectrum and the confusion that may arise from trying to locate individuals upon it, designates a 72-hour interregnum during which inmates may be placed in "Administrative Segregation" while something called the "Transgender Review Board" meets to discuss the inmates' accommodations.
People behind this policy say it's about basic human rights ...
"It's very much about equality," said Courtney Gray with the LGBT Community Center of Colorado. "It's about respecting people, although someone may have broken the law."
"This is definitely the most progressive policy in the state," Gray said. "Nationally, it's definitely one of the most progressive and comprehensive in the country."
Gray says more than one in five transfolk who interact with law enforcement report experiencing harassment, and more than one in three who spend time in jail are harassed or threatened by their fellow inmates. The Denver Sheriff's Department reports that it "deals with" one to three trans inmates each month. 'Til now, those inmates have been placed on "23-hour lockdown" for their own protection -- a practice which is not only isolating, but has become prohibitively expensive. The new policy will save money, while hopefully providing transfolk a less traumatizing experience in jail. From News9:
"In the State of Colorado, I would say it's very unique," Denver Undersheriff Gary Wilson said. "We believe it was important for us to not just protect the persons from physical harm but also from psychological harm while they're with us inside the jail."
See New9's coverage of the policy change AFTER THE JUMP ...
HuffPo explains the nature of NYCF's complaint :
New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms said Cuomo and another gay marriage supporter, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, met behind closed doors with the Senate's Republican majority in violation of the open meeting law.
... New York's open meeting law requires public access to the deliberations of legislative bodies, but [Attorney General Eric] Schneiderman argued that the Republican caucus with invited guests was exempt, even if the guests aren't in the same party. In a 5-0 ruling, the court agreed.
Anti-marriage New Yorkers were famously shocked and appalled at having been out-maneuvered by pro-marriage Democrats and their allies last summer, in the run-up to the marriage vote. (New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan openly complained that his own back-room dealings with state politicians hadn't trumped the opposition's similar back-room dealings.) NYCF's complaint was the final manifestation of that frustration, and if NYCF had won, it would have essentially meant that no Democratic and Republican lawmakers could ever again chat about issues of import without the whole world watching. The Appellate Division of the state Supreme Court realized such strictures wouldn't be especially conducive to smart governance. From HuffPo:
"In the event that we were to adopt plaintiffs' limited definition of `guests,' it would be impossible for a Democratic member of a governor's office, such as a budget director, to speak to a majority Republican caucus," according to the [Appellate court's] decision.
Deadline Hollywood reports that ABC Family is "fast tracking" an hour-long drama about a lesbian couple and their large, and ever-expanding, brood.
Jennifer Lopez is the show's producer, along with her partner at Nuyorican Productions, Simon Field. The show, which has yet to be named, will reportedly center around the lesbian couple, one of their biological children, an adopted set of twins, and a "wayward" teen girl who wanders into their collective life. J-Lo promises to guest star.
In Pittsburgh late this week, the Presbyterian General Assembly voted 338-308 against altering their denomination's definition of marriage from a "civil contract between a woman and a man" to a "covenant between two people." (Both of which sound distressingly vague.)
The Washington Post's coverage of the vote notes that disagreements over the definition of marriage have lately caused considerable strife within the global Presbyterian presbytery. The Rev. Jane Spahr was censured by the church's governing body in 2007 for signing same-sex couples' marriage licenses during the brief legal interregnum when doing so was legal. And last week, the General Assembly's moderator resigned after causing controversy by signing a gay couple's marriage license.
From the Post:
Opponents of the new definition of marriage said it would violate the word of God, divide the Presbyterian Church and alienate the denomination from its many partner churches overseas. If the assembly had approved the redefinition, it would have required ratification from a majority of the church’s 173 presbyteries, or regional districts, a process that usually stretches for months.
“I must affirm definition of marriage as between one man and one woman,” said Jodi Craiglow, of the Miami Valley Presbytery in Ohio. She directly addressed gay Presbyterians. “As much as my heart breaks for your pain and frustration, I must simply hold to the standard of the God I love,” she said.
Despite such sentiments from Presbyterians allegedly in touch with the omnipotent creator of the universe, Presbyterians have for some time been shedding anti-marriage congregants. Pro-equality ones, too. From the Post:
Last year, the denomination dropped just below 2 million members, and several theologically conservative churches have left to affiliate with like-minded denominations. In an unusual move, one liberal California congregation, the West Hollywood Presbyterian Church, recently split off to join the United Church of Christ, saying Presbyterians have been too slow to support gays and lesbians.