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02/06/2013

Towleroad Talking Points: Westboro Loses Some Members

Sb_ayanbadejoPHOTO OF THE DAY: A champ's awesome advocacy 

BY SAM GREISMAN

A look back at today's top stories

GAY ISSUES

The ranks of the Westboro Baptist Church have thinned a bit, as two of the Phelps children have joined their brother in apparently breaking away from the hate group. Bad news on the Boy Scout front as the group has announced that have decided to delay their vote on gay inclusion until May. What do you think is behind the delay?

Ari Waldman takes a look at what a post-DOMA world could mean for same-sex binational couples. This video is a must watch for all gay rights supporters; check out UK Labour MP David Lammy laying waste to anti-gay bigotry in front of the British Parliament. And Brendon Ayanbadejo continues to use his post-Superbowl visibility to push forward the message of marriage equality

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ENTERTAINMENT

Screen shot 2013-02-06 at 7.10.08 PM

Dave Franco never shies away from showing off his bod, so it is no surprise that his game of "horse" with Clippers big man DeAndre Jordan takes a turn that way. Speaking of crotch regions, David Beckham gets caught with wet undies in a new short from Guy Ritchie. Also check out a duet from P!nk and Fun.'s Nate Ruess

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VIDEOS OF THE DAY

If any of your "girlie's" have incessant questions about dude on dude sex that you are sick of answering, this video will take care of that problem for you. Also check out this new web series about being queer and having sex in Brooklyn

Posted Feb. 6,2013 at 10:30 PM EST by | Permalink | Comments (6)


Michael Douglas as Liberace and Matt Damon as His Lover Scott Thorson: First Look

Liberace

Though we have seen some preview pics and paparazzi shots, here's the first 'official' shot from HBO's Behind the Candelabra, which Liberace biopic starring Michael Douglas as Liberace and Matt Damon as his younger lover Scott Thorson, via the Hollywood Reporter:

"The couple met in 1977, when Thorson was just 18 and Liberace was 57. They remained together until 1982...Director Steven Soderbergh told journalists at TCA in January that he had sought out to tell the story of a 'real' relationship. Damon echoed the sentiment, saying: 'We weren’t giggling about it. These were people's lives. We wanted to get it right.'"

Coming to HBO in May.

Posted Feb. 6,2013 at 6:32 PM EST by in Liberace, Matt Damon, Michael Douglas, News | Permalink | Comments (37)


Two Phelps Children Defect from Westboro Baptist Church: VIDEO

Megan Phelps-Roper, who pioneered the use of social media at the Westboro Baptist Church, and her sister Grace have left the church, like their older brother Nate did years ago.

You may recall seeing Megan on Towleroad when we've posted her song parodies, set to Lady Gaga's "Telephone" and "Poker Face".

Watch a 2009 interview with Megan and Grace during one of their protests,
AFTER THE JUMP...

MeganWrites a soul-searching Phelps-Roper about herself and her sister Grace in a blog post called 'Head Full of Doubt / Road Full of Promise - Turning Points:

There are some things we do know.

We know that we’ve done and said things that hurt people. Inflicting pain on others wasn’t the goal, but it was one of the outcomes. We wish it weren’t so, and regret that hurt.

We know that we dearly love our family. They now consider us betrayers, and we are cut off from their lives, but we know they are well-intentioned. We will never not love them.

We know that we can’t undo our whole lives. We can’t even say we’d want to if we could; we are who we are because of all the experiences that brought us to this point. What we can do is try to find a better way to live from here on. That’s our focus.

Up until now, our names have been synonymous with “God Hates Fags.” Any twelve-year-old with a cell phone could find out what we did. We hope Ms. Kyle was right about the other part, too, though – that everything sticks – and that the changes we make in our lives will speak for themselves.

Jeff Chu, editor at Fast Company, who first met Megan in 2011, tells the story of how and why they left, and what they have been doing since, HERE.

He talks about the "epiphany" moment she had, when she realized the church's "Fags can't repent" philosophy was flawed:

Her departure has hurt them already—she knew it would—yet there was no way she could stay. “My doubts started with a conversation I had with David Abitbol,” she says. Megan met David, an Israeli web developer who’s part of the team behind the blog Jewlicious, on Twitter. “I would ask him questions about Judaism, and he would ask me questions about church doctrine. One day, he asked a specific question about one of our signs—‘Death Penalty for Fags’—and I was arguing for the church’s position, that it was a Levitical punishment and as completely appropriate now as it was then. He said, ‘But Jesus said’—and I thought it was funny he was quoting Jesus—‘Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.’ And then he connected it to another member of the church who had done something that, according to the Old Testament, was also punishable by death. I realized that if the death penalty was instituted for any sin, you completely cut off the opportunity to repent. And that’s what Jesus was talking about.”

Phelps and her sister disappeared for a while, and have been trying to find themselves, after having been told what to do and what to think their whole lives:

Once a constant Tweeter, she hasn’t posted anything online since October. “I don’t know what I believe, so I don’t know what to say,” she explains. “I haven’t been ready to talk about any of this.” She’s only doing so now, and briefly, because, she says, “I was so proactive before and vocal about the church. My name means something now to others that it doesn’t mean to me. I want people to know that it’s not now how it was.”

Watch a 2009 interview with Megan and Grace during one of their protests,
AFTER THE JUMP...

Posted Feb. 6,2013 at 5:57 PM EST by in Megan Phelps-Roper, News, Shirley Phelps-Roper, Westboro Baptist Church | Permalink | Comments (59)


Towleroad Guide to the Tube #1301

DAVID SHUSTER: The former FOX News and MSNBC reporter speaks with David Pakman about the behind-the-scenes action at FOX News.

MOTHBOT: A robot being driven by a moth. "The robot, created by researchers from the University of Tokyo, has been used to characterise the silkmoth's tracking behaviours and it is hoped that these can be applied to other autonomous robots so they can track down smells, and subsequent sources, of environmental spills and leaks when fitted with highly sensitive sensors."

FOX & FRIENDS: Steve Doocy suggests Hillary Clinton had a face lift.

SQUEAK: A short film by Mister Chase about killing an imaginary friend.

For recent Guides to the Tube, click HERE.

Posted Feb. 6,2013 at 5:25 PM EST by in FOX News, Hillary Clinton, News, Towleroad Guide to the Tube | Permalink | Comments (1)


News: Monopoly, Ryan Lochte, Marijuana, Roseanne Cash, Drones

RoadToday is National Gay-Straight Alliance Day.

RoadSTUDY: Marijuana doubles the risk of stroke among young adults.

M_catRoadMonopoly's new piece.

RoadGay Iranian boxer wins battle to have asylum case reconsidered in Britain: "The UKBA had rejected his claim based on sexual orientation, saying there was no realistic prospect of an immigration judge finding he had established he was gay or would be treated as such by potential persecutors in his homeland. However, Lord Stewart said the decision was 'technically flawed', and a new ruling should take into account mental health material that was omitted."

RoadChris Pratt lands lead in upcoming Marvel superhero flick Guardians of the Galaxy: "The 33-year-old Parks and Recreation actor, who bulked up last year for his role in the Oscar-nominated flick Zero Dark Thirty, will play the role of Star-Lord (aka Peter Quill), who is the offspring of a human mother and an alien father."

RoadJohn Travolta cruise ship case dropped: "On Friday, a judge denied Travolta's attempt to throw it into arbitration. On Monday, the parties agreed to drop the case. Neither party was available to discuss what prompted the dismissal. In the lawsuit, Travolta gave his own sworn declaration. 'While I was indeed a passenger aboard the MS Enchantment of the Seas in or about June 2009, Mr. Zanzi's allegations in the Complaint are entirely false, including... a purported physical encounter with me and his allegations... regarding an alleged financial offer I made him. None of these events happened, and Zanzi's allegations are pure fabrication.'"

LochteRoadRyan Lochte recreated Nirvana's Nevermind album cover, but hey, he forgot to take his Speedo off. Video.

RoadBen & Jerry's forced to remove post celebrating marriage equality in UK from its Facebook page after 15 minutes, due to hateful comments.

RoadRight-wing author Jonathan Cahn: 9/11 was a message from God to ban gay marriage. “We’re watching rapidly since 9/11, America depart from God and it’s becoming, just like Israel did, it became almost like a pagan nation, we America are forgetting our foundation and it’s becoming almost the same as a pagan nation.” Cahn said. “But to whom much is given, much is required; so if we go this route, God is warning and God is calling.”

RoadLesson: Don't flip off the judge.

RoadBeyoncé's reps demand that unflattering photos of her be removed from the internet!

JacobsRoadMarc Jacobs is Diet Coke's new creative director and he's celebrating with a can of it in a photo booth.

RoadRoseanne Cash donates song to benefit the Outreach programs at St. Luke's: The People Living with AIDS project. Background on it: "Cash wrote the song, 'Jim and George,'about an elderly gay couple in Chelsea who she says were 'very dear' to her. Cash described the writing process as 'an exercise in compassion and awareness to see myself through their eyes, and them through my eyes. Love is love, and love doesn’t contain itself within arbitrary borders of gender, orientation, race, nationality, creed or age. Love is love.'"

RoadDrones get scrutinized.

RoadNate Berkus' sexuality gets scrutinized.

RoadRhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee presses for marriage equality: “We are in intense competition with Connecticut, New York and Massachusetts,” said Chafee, a 59-year-old Republican- turned-independent, ticking off three nearby states where gays can wed. “We are all in the same economy. We have to have the same welcome mat at our door that our neighbors have.”

Posted Feb. 6,2013 at 3:55 PM EST by | Permalink | Comments (25)


A Queer Show About Sex, Love, Booze, Drugs, Friendship, Family, and Amazing Acts of Stupidity is Coming: VIDEO

3bits

Another new Brooklyn-based gay web series is on the way called The 3 Bits, written and directed by Max Freeman and Margaret Singer. It bills itself as a queer show about sex, love, booze, drugs, friendship, family, and amazing acts of stupidity. But mostly sex.

Check out the preview, AFTER THE JUMP...

MEET HENRY BITS from Unusually Fine on Vimeo.

Posted Feb. 6,2013 at 2:55 PM EST by in News, Web Series | Permalink | Comments (52)



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