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News: Natural Gas, Exhuming, Another Bush, Manbar

90s stars we still know and love today.

ArafatDeceased Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat's remains will be exhumed on Tuesday as officials investigate yet another rumor that the Israelis poisoned him. Great, just what the region needs: the ghost of Arafat hanging over a cease-fire.

Celebrities react to Larry Hagman's death.

A Chicago-area Catholic Church has offered to confirm Lennon Cihak, the Minnesota teenager denied confirmation at his own church after he supported marriage equality on Facebook.

Early reviews for Les Misérables are sensational.

Bush: The Next Generation: "George Prescott Bush, the son of former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and the nephew of former Texas governor and ex-President George W. Bush, has filed preliminary paperwork to run for office in the Lone Star state in 2014. That leaves the new Bush poised to become a key face in the next generation of Republican politicians."

Umm... "Does being fat make you more jolly?"

SpringfieldexplosionA natural gas explosion damaged 42 buildings, including a strip club, in Springfield, Massachusetts.

Critics are not being kind to Liz & Dick starring Lindsay Lohan. Tim Goodman from The Hollywood Reporter called it "spectacularly bad."

Skip It!

The LA Times profiles Dave Roberts, the first Democrat elected to the San Diego Board of Supervisors in over a decade. "He's also gay and married to a retired Air Force master sergeant. The two are adoptive parents to five former foster children, ages 4 to 17, who call them Daddy Dave and Daddy Wally."

From Monika Johnson's article "Making progressivism last": "Creating progressive infrastructure will ultimately yield decisions that change our economy and society. For example, I was struck recently when a relative turned down a lucrative deal because the organization was enacting anti-gay policies in conducting business. In making this decision, he took a stand for what he believed in and created a ripple effect that will influence that business’s chances of success."

Michael O’Kane, the editor of the Irish Daily Star, has resigned for his role in the publication of the nude Kate Middleton pictures.

HarrymuralA mural of a shirtless Prince Harry has become a huge attraction for London's Manbar.

The New York Times magazine spent some time with Scott Fahlman, inventor of the emoticon. "In 1982, as a young professor at Carnegie Mellon University, he realized the need for a symbol to temper the bickering that plagued online forums. The Internet was just a baby then, and yet already flame wars raged. Fahlman decided that a smiley face could be useful as a 'joke marker' (as he called it) to take the sting out of mocking statements or pranks."

Indiana's Purdue University has big plans for World AIDS Day.

Have Richard III's remains finally been found?

George Prescott Bush, the son of former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and the nephew of former Texas governor and ex-President George W. Bush, has filed preliminary paperwork to run for office in the Lone Star state in 2014. That leaves the new Bush poised to become a key face in the next generation of Republican politicians.

Read more:

Posted Nov. 24,2012 at 4:34 PM EST by in Barack Obama, Film and TV, Health, Israel, Lindsay Lohan, Minnesota, News, Prince Harry, Religion, San Diego | Permalink | Comments (20)

Concerns Remain Amid Anti-LGBT Violence In DC

DCProtestWashington DC's police department recorded 51 anti-LGBT attacks between the beginning of the year and October, down just two from 2011. That includes the three separate attacks in Columbia Heights last March.

The consistency in these numbers highlights what some critics say are inefficiencies in the department's gay and lesbian liaison unit and tensions between activists and the police themselves.

From the New York Times:

...Some leaders in the city’s gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender population have been vocal about their frustration with Chief Cathy L. Lanier, saying that changes she brought to a police unit known as the Gay and Lesbian Liaison Unit have hindered the city’s response.

At times, the frustration has been mutual. Chief Lanier says the department has been doing everything in its power to stem the violence, going so far as to seek an outside review of the department’s procedures that have been the subject of criticism. The results of that review are expected late this year or in early 2013.

"We feel like everything that we can do, we’re doing, and yet we get these complaints back from some of the advocates," she said.

One of the most controversial of Lanier's changes was the redistribution of about 100 LGBT liaisons throughout the city, rather than concentrating them in more gay-concentrated areas.

"The events of 2011, the intense violence, really showed that the restructuring had failed to create any kind of meaningful reaction and response," DC Trans Coalition volunteer Jason A. Terry told the paper.

Posted Nov. 24,2012 at 2:20 PM EST by in News, Washington DC | Permalink | Comments (16)

NJ College President Must Decide On Chick-Fil-A Ban

ChickenglaadFast food franchise Chick-fil-A continues to feel ramifications from CEO president Dan Cathy's comments about gay people and the company's support for anti-gay groups like Family Research Council.

Shore News Today reports that Herman J. Saatkamp, president of Richard Stockton College in Galloway, New Jersey, will soon decide whether or not to evict Chick-fil-A's campus outpost after the student senate approved the measure.

The Student Senate wants Saatkamp to ask Chick-fil-A to leave campus.

The Senate voted 14-10, with two abstentions, to send a letter of resolution Monday, Nov. 26.

Saatkamp will have to decide if he wants to consider trying to break a 10-year contract with the chicken franchise that has been dealing with controversy since comments were made by its Chief Operating Officer Dan Cathy last summer opposing same-sex marriage.


Members of the Stockton Pride Alliance, which represents the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community, have attended the Senate’s last two meetings to express concerns about being discriminated against and saying the perceived discrimination was encouraged by Chick-fil-A’s presence.

A campus survey, meanwhile, found that 66% of Stockton students want the restaurant to stick around.

Posted Nov. 24,2012 at 1:14 PM EST by in Chick-fil-A, Discrimination, New Jersey, News | Permalink | Comments (14)

Maine Judge Tosses Transgender Student's Bathroom Suit

StylishunisexSaying he's "not unsympathetic" to the discrimination transgender people face in today's society, Maine Justice William Anderson this week threw out a transgender student's lawsuit claiming Maine's Orono School District broke the law by forbidding the unnamed student from using the girl's bathroom.

“The court is not unsympathetic to [the girl’s] plight, or that of her parents,” said Justice Anderson, according to the Bangor Daily News. "It is no doubt a difficult thing to grow up transgender in today’s society. This is a sad truth, which cannot be completely prevented by the law alone."

More from his remarks:

The law casts a broad stroke where one more delicate and refined is needed. Although others mistreated [the girl] because she is transgender, our Maine Human Rights Act only holds a school accountable for deliberate indifference to known, severe and pervasive student-on-student harassment. It does no more.

In this case, the school acted within the bounds of its authority in prohibiting [the girl] from using the girls’ restroom; it did not itself harass [the girl] by its actions, and it was not deliberately indifferent to the harassment that [she] experienced from others.

The court finds that there is no evidence of deliberate indifference with respect to plaintiff’s claims of education discrimination, and it finds that defendants acted within the law under the public accommodation discrimination claim. Therefore, the court grants summary judgment to [the school district].

The lawsuit, stemming from a 2007 incident, was first filed in 2009.

Posted Nov. 24,2012 at 11:57 AM EST by in Discrimination, Maine, News | Permalink | Comments (27)

Drag Queen RAs Are On The Loose, Says NOM Activist In Thanksgiving Message: VIDEO


There's no American tradition anti-gay activists enjoy more than turning what should be a day of thanks into a twisted attack on LGBT people. Case-in-point: NOM activist Dr. Jennifer Roback Norse ("Dr. J") scaring supporters with a tale of a gay resident advisor who held a drag ball in a college dorm! The gays are trying to make boys dress like girls and girls dress like boys and they're coming for your co-eds!

Watch the ghastly, histrionic declaration, found at Good As You, AFTER THE JUMP.

Posted Nov. 24,2012 at 9:52 AM EST by in Gay Marriage, News, NOM | Permalink | Comments (34)

Actor Larry Hagman, AKA JR Ewing, Dead At 81

HagmanLarry Hagman, the actor made famous playing Major Nelson on I Dream of Jeannie and then made even more famous playing scheming JR Ewing on Dallas, has died.

[Hagman] had a long history of health problems and died Friday due to complications from his battle with cancer, his family said.

"Larry was back in his beloved hometown of Dallas, re-enacting the iconic role he loved the most. Larry’s family and closest friends had joined him in Dallas for the Thanksgiving holiday," the family said in a statement that was provided to The Associated Press by Warner Bros., producer of the show.

The 81-year-old actor was surrounded by friends and family before he passed peacefully, "just as he’d wished for," the statement said.

Linda Gray, the actress who played Hagman's fictional Dallas wife Sue Ellen Ewing, said Hagman "brought joy to everyone he knew."

"He was creative, generous, funny, loving and talented, and I will miss him enormously. He was an original and lived life to the fullest," she said.

AFTER THE JUMP, footage of Hagman's turn as JR Ewing, a character whose shooting riveted the world and changed television forever. And, as Emily Nussbaum recently wrote in The New Yorker, that famous cliffhanger may not have been as suspenseful had it not been for Hagman's off-stage drama.

Initially, "Dallas" was a slow-moving nighttime soap opera about a family of Texan oil and cattle tycoons. The series had risen to become a top drama on CBS, when, on March 21, 1980, an episode called "A House Divided" aired. Larry Hagman’s J. R. Ewing—a villainous minor character who became, through Hagman’s magnetism, the smirking star of the series—was plugged in the gut. The nation had a new catchphrase: "Who shot J.R.?"

The real culprit behind the shooting was a network brainstorm. "We had done, I think twenty-two shows, and CBS was making so much money they wanted to extend it for four," Hagman recalled, in 2010. "And our producers said, 'Let’s just shoot the S.O.B. and figure it out later.'" J.R. was featured on the covers of Time and People. CNN, which had just been launched, devoted a series of segments to hyping the show, hoping for some pop heat during that grim year (hostages in Iran, the economy in the dumps). But the cliffhanger might have been less effective if Hagman hadn’t walked off the set. He flew to Europe and demanded a raise, which triggered rumors that the producers would resort to a plastic-surgery twist to replace him with Robert Culp.

AFTER THE JUMP, a Dallas compilation that proves only Hagman could play Ewing and, via JMG, the first episode of I Dream of Jeannie.

Posted Nov. 24,2012 at 8:31 AM EST by in Film and TV, News | Permalink | Comments (16)


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