05/21/2013PHOTO OF THE DAY: The annual homoerotic masterpiece that is the Herndon Climb.
BY SAM GREISMAN
A look back at today's top stories
Just a few hours after yesterday's rally against homophobic attacks in the West Village, there were two more reports of anti-gay attacks in the city. A gay nightlife promoter was attacked in the East Village and a gay couple got into an altercation in SoHo a few hours later. What is going on!?
A French historian and radical right activist took his own life today in front of the Notre Dame Cathedral and crowds of tourists when he shot himself in what was reported as an anti-gay marriage statement. Fred Phelps Jr. of the Westboro Baptist Church continues to prove that he has absolutely no shame as he blamed yesterday's horrific tornado in Oklahoma on Jason Collins' coming out. Veteran UFC Fighter Nate Diaz refuses to back down from his recent blatant homophobic remarks and ironically the states with the highest numbers of gay parents also have bans on same-sex marriage.
Check out some speeches from yesterday's anti-homophobia rally in New York; the family of Mark Carson and the couple attacked in front of Madison Square Garden are featured. Speaking of speeches, just try and not be charmed by this gay high school senior thanking his class for accepting him. Garth Greenwell gives us a review of David McConnell's new book which looks at the murders of six gay men.
VIDEOS OF THE DAY
Three powerful videos from yesterday's devastating tornado in Oklahoma; first take a look at the birth of the powerful twister, then watch as a family emerges from their storm cellar into total devastation and prepare to shed a few tears as a woman finds her dog alive during a live interview.
Gay and lesbian binational couples have been thrown under the bus on immigration reform. Senator Patrick Leahy withdrew his amendment to the comprehensive bill, Buzzfeed reports:
A little past 7 p.m., Leahy said, “It is with a heavy heart … I will withhold the Leahy Amendment 7 at this point.” Leahy offered the amendment a half-hour earlier, saying, “I don’t want to be the senator who asks Americans to choose between the love of their life and the love of their country.”
He added, “Discriminating against people based on who they love is a travesty,” noting that he wanted to hear from the bipartisan “Gang of Eight” senators about why they didn’t include protections for gay couples in the bill.
Sen. Lindsey Graham went first, saying he opposed the inclusion of gay couples’ protections in the bill. “If you redefine marriage for immigration purposes [by the amendment], the bill would fall apart because the coalition would fall apart,” he said. “It would be a bridge too far.”
More at Buzzfeed including Leahy's statemtn.
Other senators followed suit, saying the amendment would destroy the bill's chances.
"This is one of the most excruciating decisions I have had to make in my [time] in Congress. … Not to do this is rank discrimination....They’ve made it perfectly clear that if this provision is included … they will abandon [the bill.] … If we make the effort to add it to this bill, they will walk away. … The result, no equality, no immigration bill, everyone loses. … Much as it pains me, I cannot support this amendment if it will bring down the bill.’"
Said Rachel B. Tiven, executive director of Immigration Equality Action Fund, in a statement in response to the abandonment:
"Despite the leadership of Chairman Leahy, Judiciary Committee Democrats have caved to bullying by their Republican colleagues. There should be shame on both sides of the political aisle today for lawmakers who worked to deny LGBT immigrant families a vote. Despite widespread support from business, labor, faith, Latino and Asian-American advocates, Senators abandoned LGBT families without a vote. From the beginning we told Senator Schumer that it would only get harder to add LGBT families to the bill. We are disappointed that Senator Schumer and his 'Gang of 8' colleagues accepted a false choice between LGBT families and immigration reform, when the truth is that including LGBT families from the outset would have strengthened the bill."
HRC's Chad Griffin released a statement as well:
"As we come together as a nation to tackle our broken immigration system, it is deplorable that a small number of Senators have been able to stand in the way of progress for lesbian and gay couples torn apart by discriminatory laws. Instead of working to achieve common-sense solutions, Senators Graham, Flake, McCain and Rubio threatened to derail the entire immigration bill to appease a small but vocal group of anti-gay social conservatives that will do anything to stop progress for lesbian and gay couples. We are extremely disappointed that our allies did not put their anti-LGBT colleagues on the spot and force a vote on the measure that remains popular with the American people. We will continue to work hard to include bi-national same-sex couples as the bill moves to the floor and remain committed to the underlying principles of inclusive and comprehensive immigration reform. We owe it to the estimated 267,000 undocumented LGBT adults and estimated 24,700 LGBT bi-national couples living in the U.S. today to get the job done."
When speaking at Fairview High School graduation ceremony on Sunday in Boulder, CO, speaker Ted Chalfen immediately cut to the chase.
“I’m going to skip all of the clichés I want to rattle off right now, and get right to the point…I’m gay. Many, if not most, of the students here today know this, and most of them don’t really care. That is exactly the reason why I decided I had to give this speech.”
Chalfen then went on to detail the apprehension he felt when he first decided to come out to his peers and teachers, and chronicles the outpouring of support he received as a result. He also congratulates his fellow students and their parents on their open-mindedness, and details precisely how their attitudes will build a better future.
“This generation is never going to accomplish the things I know it to be capable of unless we stop thinking of each other in terms of ‘us’ and ‘them’…Like it or not, we’re all in this together.”
You can see Chalfen’s heartwarming speech AFTER THE JUMP...
After receiving a 90-day suspension and $20,000 fine for a gay slur he used on Twitter, UFC lightweight Nate Diaz has yet to issue any sort of apology to the LGBT community, nor to the target of his remark, fellow fighter Pat Healy. Furthermore, on a Monday night episode of MMA Hour, Diaz's manager, Mike Kogan, stood by Diaz's remarks when given an opportunity to address them. SB Nation reports:
"Nate doesn't feel remorse for what he said," Kogan told host Ariel Helwani."I don't feel remorse for what he said. I don't feel remorse for defending what he said or elaborating on what he said. Because it was not a homophobic statement. It was not intended to offend homosexuals. We weren't even talking about homosexuals. One can debate the multiple uses of this term. We can sit here and debate in the English language, there's a lot of words that mean a lot of different things, but whatever. As it is, it wasn’t intended to be used the way people tried to twist the way it was being used. So therefore, what does he have to feel bad about?"
MARRIAGE NEWS WATCH: Can we get to #13?
BOB VANDER PLAATS: Iowa's leading gay activist sounds off on marriage equality - "It's awful."
SCORE: Kid makes cutes football goal ever.
LIBERATOR? 3-D printed gun shoots off nine rounds.
For recent Guides to the Tube, click HERE.
Doors keyboardist Ray Manzarek dies at 74.
UK marriage equality bill clears House of Commons in 366-161 vote.
Marine Corp boot camp attendee reports being called 'faggot' by drill instructors 10-50 times a day.
Christian Bale parts ways with his hair.
NYPD to increase police presence in response to anti-gay violence: "In the wake of last weekend's deadly shooting on a street in Greenwich Village, officials said Monday that police would increase their presence in the Village and nearby neighborhoods through the end of June — gay pride month."
"Ex-gay" group NARTH encourages Boy Scouts to continue discriminating against gays.
18-year-old invents supercapacitor that will enable smartphones to be charged in 20-30 seconds instead of hours.
The compound in the Mediterranean diet that makes cancer cells mortal? "One way that cancer cells thrive is by inhibiting a process that would cause them to die on a regular cycle that is subject to strict programming. This study in cells, led by Ohio State University researchers, found that a compound in certain plant-based foods, called apigenin, could stop breast cancer cells from inhibiting their own death."
Behind the Candelabra cast hits Cannes.
Ricky Martin takes his twins to the park.
Frank Bruni meets Carla Hale, Catholic school gym teacher fired for being gay.
ESPN analysts: what's up with the gay stigma in the WNBA?
Gay marriage battle in France to play out on local level: "With the country’s highest court the Constitutional Council rejecting an objection to the gay marriage bill last week, the government appeared to have won the long running battle, at a national level at least. However at a local level, it appears a new front will soon be opened up as elected French mayors across the country line up saying they will refuse to marry gay couples."
Anonymous goes on offensive over gay Florida high school student Kaitlyn Hunt, arrested and expelled for consensual relationship with fellow student. "The truth is, Kaitlyn Hunt is a bright young girl who was involved in a consensual, same-sex relationship while both she and her partner were minors," reads the release. "She has a big future ahead of her and there are people, thousands of people in fact, that have no intention of allowing you to ruin it with your rotten selective enforcement."
Blogger Accidental Bear does one of his bathtub interviews with a Sister of Perpetual Indulgence.
Gay D.C. psychiatrist named head of American Psychiatric Association: "An APA spokesperson said Levin, a psychiatrist who has specialized in substance abuse treatment, becomes the first known out gay person to head the APA, which was founded in 1844 and represents more than 33,000 psychiatric physicians in the U.S. and abroad." (Washington Blade photo Michael Key)
Will media outlets fall for the anti-gay Boy Scout trap again?
Brad Pitt on drifting earlier in life, and then finding a direction: “I’d get so far and then want to do something else. I mean, I’m two credits short of graduating college. Two credits. All I had to do was write a paper. What kind of guy is that? That guy scares me – the guy who always leaves a little on his plate. For a long time I thought I did too much damage – drug damage. I was a bit of a drifter. A guy who felt he grew up in something of a vacuum and wanted to see things, wanted to be inspired. I followed that other thing. I spent years f–king off. But then I got burnt out and felt that I was wasting my opportunity. It was a conscious change. This was about a decade ago. It was an epiphany – a decision not to squander my opportunities. It was a feeling of get up. Because otherwise, what’s the point?”