Michael Taylor was denied parole for his role in 1990 murder of 44-year old James Zappalorti here in New York City.
Taylor, then 20 years old, and friend Philip Sarlo, 26 at the time, approached Zappalatori on Staten Island and then slashed his throat because the Vietnam veteran was gay. After killing him, the men robbed his house, stealing, among other things, rosary beads.
NY1 reports that Taylor was sentenced to 23 years-to-life in prison for the heinous crime, one of the first widely publicized hate crimes. Sarlo died in prison in 1997.
The New York Times this weekend looks at how gay and lesbian military cadets are doing now that Don't Ask, Don't Tell has been swept into the dustbin of history. Turns out, they're doing pretty great.
Still "savoring" the new openness and inclusion that emerged after the discriminatory law keeping them in the closet was abolished, gay and lesbians at military academies are increasingly organized on campuses from coast-to-coast.
On the day known as Blue Rush, when incoming freshmen learn about extracurricular activities, Lydia Hill and Brandon Reams were making history, introducing their fellow cadets to Spectrum, the academy’s first club for gay, lesbian and bisexual students and their straight friends and supporters.
"My biggest fear was that nobody would show up at our table," said Ms. Hill, a sophomore and a co-president of the new club. "I was afraid that people would pass us by."
Some cadets averted their eyes. Others stopped for a moment and quickly moved on. But by the end of the afternoon, 30 people had signed up. Ms. Hill, 19, who had wondered whether she would ever be fully accepted as a lesbian determined to build a career as an officer in the Air Force, was thrilled.
"I was overwhelmed," she said. "Having that many people sign up, it was, like, wow."
And yet conservatives like Michele Bachmann still think we should have left DADT in place. I'm no military expert, but it seems far better to have happy, well-adjusted soldiers than scared, isolated soldiers hiding in the shadows. But, again, I'm no expert.
Some bad news for gay actor Michael Urie: CBS decided his latest television venture, Partners, based on Will & Grace creators Max Mutchnick and David Kohan's real-life friendship, didn't meet the ratings mark and gave it the ax.
David Petraeus' affair is the gays' fault. Because, you know, why not?
Rihanna and Kanye remix "Diamonds".
Baby ducks and kittens make a great match.
University of Michigan professor and author David Halperin discusses his new book, How To Be Gay. Part of the book looks at why gay men often celebrate certain types of celebrities, like Lady Gaga. Says Halperin, "What my analysis implies is that one way to explain gay male culture’s investment in some of these figures is to say that gay culture is responding to certain hierarchies of gender and sexuality that pervade the cultural field."
The sun has been exceptionally gassy this week.
At least 42 Palestinians and 3 Israelis have been killed in the increasingly violent and worrisome conflict between the two sides.
The White House says Israel "has the right to defend itself".
Take a listen to Will.i.am and Britney Spears' new single, "Scream and Shout".
Zac Efron pumping... his gas.
Gay activists in North Carolina are preparing for a fight to pass employment non-discrimination across the Tar Heel State. Said Stuart Campbell, executive director for Equality North Carolina, "We’re going to have to grow the base by creating coalitions and working with folks on the local level with lots of different communities. We’ll be building a movement that will ultimately lead to a statewide effort.”
The Twin Peaks bar in San Francisco's Castro District has been given landmark status.
Happy birthday, RuPaul!
The United Nations have until Tuesday to decide whether or not to come out against state-sponsored discrimination against LGBT people.
Rather than getting with the times and learning to accept the fact that there are gay people in this world, Linda Harvey and her conservative group, Mission: America, are trying to boycott all of the companies that scored well on Human Rights Campaign's Corporate Equality Index. From their form letter: "You are highly-rated by the [HRC] as a company supportive of many aspects of the homosexual activist agenda. I am hoping you have done this out of ignorance about the true nature of both homosexuality and the goals of aggressive homosexual advocacy."
Posted Nov. 17,2012 at 3:56 PM EST by Andrew Belonsky in Discrimination, Gay Marriage, GOProud, Human Rights Campaign, Israel, Michael Urie, News, North Carolina, Rihanna, RuPaul, Science, United Nations, Zac Efron | Permalink | Comments (28)
Anti-gay activists held marches across France today to protest President Francois Hollande and others' push for marriage equality, an initiative they're calling "marriage for everyone."
Such groups have proven themselves to be into using costume design to make their point (see picture, right), and today's demonstrations were no exception: pink, blue and white were the colors du jour.
From the Washington Post:
Saturday’s event, entitled “march for everyone,” attracted several thousand people in cities such as Lyon, Marseille and Paris.
There is a dress code of blue, white and pink aimed to put a spin on the French tricolore flag’s traditional colors.
A recent survey found that majority of French favor gay marriage, [while] the support for adoption for gay couples hovers at around 50 percent.
It's unclear how long it will take for Hollande and company to pass marriage equality. The president and his cabinet approved a draft bill earlier this month, but religious and social conservatives, as well as some of Hollande's own socialist party, are increasingly vocal in their opposition and threaten to derail the entire process.
Just a few weeks ago, prior to his reelection, Mark Suben, district attorney of Cortland County in New York, denied rumors that he appeared in 70s-era porn. Yesterday, he changed that story, admitting that, yes, as a struggling actor he had a few turns in skin flicks.
"Recently materials have been circulated alleging that I was involved in the adult film industry about 40 years ago in New York. Those allegations are true," Suben, first elected Cortland County DA in 2008, said during a press conference yesterday. "I was an actor in adult films for a short period in the early 70s. I was also an actor in other venues including off Broadway, soap operas and commercial advertisements."
He went on:
A few weeks ago, when asked, I denied this to members of the press. I regret that and I apologize for it. I was shocked and embarrassed to be confronted with this so many years later. I was embarrassed for my family and friends who have stood by me. I also denied my actions to my family, my friends and my staff.
Suben described his work in those films, including one called The Lecher, and his subsequent lies as "bad judgement."
AFTER THE JUMP, the YouTube video made by an anonymous tipster who exposed Suben's celluloid past.
Prez knows his memes.
President Barack Obama jokingly mimics U.S. Olympic gymnast McKayla Maroney's "not impressed" look while greeting members of the 2012 U.S. Olympic gymnastics teams in the Oval Office, Nov. 15, 2012. Steve Penny, USA Gymnastics President, and Savannah Vinsant laugh at left. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)