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04/19/2007


Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Chapter Placed on Probation for Rejecting Pledge Because He's Gay

Back in October, Towleroad reported that Alpha Iota, the Morgan State University chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi, was under investigation at Morgan State University in Baltimore for rejecting Brian Stewart, who pledged the fraternity because his pastor and mentor from his youth was a member.

StewartStewart is gay, and that's the reason he was rejected, he said, a fact he discovered when a friend showed him some anti-gay online banter between two frat brothers.

Over the Christmas holiday, the WaPo reported that in early December the fraternity was placed on probation until fall 2015, and barred from participating in university events or hosting its own as a result of the investigation:

Kappa Alpha Psi leaders at Morgan State, and at the fraternity’s national headquarters, did not challenge the authenticity of the text-message exchange when it first became public, and they did not return requests for comment on the university’s probation decision.

Although it is unclear exactly what happened with Stewart’s application, the incident exposes a growing tension at many HBCUs between the conservative, religious values at their core and LGBT students who demand fair treatment. That tension comes as many of these schools struggle to attract and graduate enough students and stay financially afloat.

Stewart says he is no longer interested in pledging the fraternity but filed the complaint to raise awareness about the bigotry he experienced.


Gay Wedding Video of the Day Donavan and Ricardo

Partner

Writes filmmaker and friend Johnny Leon about the wedding of Donavan and Ricardo at the Corradetti Glassblowing Studio in Baltimore: "The two most touching moments were probably when they read their vows in their own languages, and when they broke down in tears after the ceremony and hugged their respective mothers."

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Wedding2

Continue reading "Gay Wedding Video of the Day Donavan and Ricardo" »


Baltimore-Area Police Chief Accused of Calling Officer a 'Fag' and a 'Rump Ranger': VIDEO

Larry Tolliver, the police chief of Anne Arundel County, has been accused of making homophobic slurs against an officer who testified in a corruption trial against former County Executive John Leopold. Tolliver allegedly called the officer a "fag" and a "rump ranger" and reassigned him and two others as retribution for their testimony.

TolliverTolliver is denying the charges, the Capital Gazette reports:

He said allegations he reassigned officers who had testified against former County Executive John R. Leopold are false. Tolliver did, however, admit to using off-color language about homosexuals, though he said he didn’t recall using it at the workplace. The allegations surfaced in a letter dated Monday from County Councilman Jamie Benoit, D-Crownsville, to County Executive Laura Neuman.

Benoit alleged Tolliver reassigned three officers from the department’s Intelligence Division to the Southern and Western Districts and relieved the major who oversaw the unit as “retribution against the very officers that led to the removal of the most corrupt elected official in our county’s history.”

Another officer left the unit voluntarily before he could be reassigned, Benoit wrote.

Benoit said one of the officers, a 20-year-veteran of the police department, filed a complaint against the police chief for making anti-gay slurs.

Benoit wrote that in the complaint against Tolliver, the police chief is alleged to have told the officer, “I didn’t know you that you were a fag” after looking at a picture of him.

Tolliver also reportedly called the officer a "rump ranger", according to WJZ.

Chief Tolliver refused to answer questions on camera but said in a statement, “I in no way, shape or form am homophobic. I don’t encourage any negative attitudes or feelings towards homosexuality and don’t question anyone about their sexuality…I fully support a culture of diversity in the agency and it is something I have worked very hard towards, specifically in our recruiting efforts.”

Watch a report from WJZ Baltimore, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Baltimore-Area Police Chief Accused of Calling Officer a 'Fag' and a 'Rump Ranger': VIDEO" »


Brendon Ayanbadejo Cut by the Baltimore Ravens

Marriage equality ally Brendon Ayanbadejo's contract was terminated by the Baltimore Ravens yesterday, Newsday reports:

B_ayanbadejoAt tonight’s Straight for Equality Gala in Manhattan where he and Vikings punter Chris Kluwe were being honored, Ayanbadejo said his non-football activities were a factor in the Ravens’ decision.

“My bark is louder than my bite,” he told Newsday. “I make a lot of noise and garner a lot of attention for various things off the football field. When that starts happening, why do you have that player around?”

Ayanbadejo said he understands it’s just a piece of the ultimate decision. The three-time Pro Bowler as a special teamer said he knows the Ravens can find players to do what he does for less money and conceded that his productivity has gone down in recent years.

“But,” he said, “I don’t necessarily think that teams want this type of attention.”

The Ravens say it had nothing to do with that:

"We are surprised that Brendan would indicate that," said Ravens spokesman Kevin Byrne. "We have always respected Brendan's opinions and his right to express them. He was released for football reasons, period."

UPDATE: Ayanbadejo denies he said he was cut because of his views.

Just a heads up I did an interview today and no way said I was cut because my views. I said my talk was louder than my production and at 36 when you are not producing it is a fair move. You can find cheaper guys to do what I do. Ravens are the best organization in the nfl period!

Joe Jervis says he spent much time on Twitter last night reassureing fans and denouncing homophobes.


Baltimore Ravens Super Bowl Celebration: Joe Flacco's F-Bomb and Chykie Brown's Confetti Angel - VIDEO, GIF

Angel

The Baltimore Ravens joyously celebrated their 34-31 Super Bowl win last night.

Ravens cornerback Chykie Brown struck the most memorable victory pose, making a 'snow' angel in the confetti on the field, while quarterback and MVP Joe Flacco dropped an F-bomb on live TV:

Meanwhile, our friends at Athlete Ally sent this graphic out congratulating marriage equality advocate Brendon Ayanbadejo:

Ally_ayanbadejo


Ravens Linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo Plans to Carry Marriage Equality Advocacy to Super Bowl

Ayanbadejo

NYT columnist Frank Bruni reports on an email sent by Super Bowl-bound Baltimore Raven and marriage equality advocate Brendon Ayanbadejo in the early morning hours after his team won the AFC Championship:

XlviiHe tapped out an email to Brian Ellner, a leading marriage-equality advocate with whom he had worked before, and Michael Skolnik, the political director for Russell Simmons, a hip-hop mogul who has become involved in many issues, including same-sex marriage.

Ayanbadejo wrote: “Is there anything I can do for marriage equality or anti- bullying over the next couple of weeks to harness this Super Bowl media?” The time stamp on the email was 3:40:35 A.M.

Ayanbadejo, who says his ultimate goal is to bring his message to Ellen DeGeneres' show with a Super Bowl ring and "bust a move", is currently figuring out the best way to make that message resonate in the biggest arena in pro football:

Throughout his week, Ayanbadejo has been—and will be—talking to gay-rights advocates about how to seize this moment. For example, he’s been swapping emails with Hudson Taylor, the founder and executive director of Athlete Ally, a group dedicated to ridding sports at all levels—high school, college, professional—of homophobia.

“He’s so excited and ready to take a stand in whatever way he can,” said Taylor. “He is leveraging the biggest sports stage in the world.”

He’s also in conversations with Ellner and Skolnik specifically about marriage equality. Said Ellner: “He understands that as a straight biracial player in the Super Bowl, he can have a huge impact on the future of this issue.”

And we'll be rooting for him.


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