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Gay Group Receives 'Hostile' Rejection From St. Patrick's Day Parade Organizers: VIDEO

MassEquality

Gay organizations have a troubled history with the annual St. Patrick's Day Parade and are routinely banned from marching in several cities, Boston in particular. This year it appeared that progress, slight as it was, was being made as the gay rights group MassEquality was invited to march, provided none of the members wore t-shirts or held signs that included the word "gay" or referenced their orientation.

That millimeter forward just took a big step back. Parade organizers have now rescinded the invitation after the parade's sponsor, the Allied War Veterans Council, claimed that MassEquality lied on its application and attempted to enter the parade under false pretenses, saying that it wasn't a legitimate veteran's group.

At a closed door City Hall meeting last night it was made clear to us that the LGBT Veterans for Equality do not have 20 United States Veterans who wish to march. Rather, they presented only one supposed Veteran (sic) and a group of others carrying rainbow flags. When asked about a Color Guard, their loan (sic) Veteran replied that he wasn’t sure he could supply any more Veterans willing to march.

It is our belief that the application submitted to us by LGBT Veterans for Equality was a ploy by them to enter this parade under false pretenses and is hereby denied. It is our intention to keep this parade a family friendly event. We will not allow any group to damage the Integrity (sic) of the historic event or our reputation as a safe and fun filled day for all.

MassEquality wanted gay veterans to be able to march openly and proudly, and were shocked by the hostile rejection from the parade organizers.

“We know from experience that change comes through conversation and dialogue. We were encouraged to have an historic opportunity to meet face-to-face with Parade organizers to discuss a contingent involving LGBT veterans, and we did so with open hearts and open minds. We regret that the Parade organizers shut down conversation before an agreement could be finalized,” MassEquality executive director Kara Coredini said in a press release.

Added Coredini: “We were under the impression that negotiations were positive and ongoing, and we were surprised by the abrupt and hostile tone of the Parade organizers’ rejection.”

You can see CBS Boston's coverage of the story (autoplay) AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Gay Group Receives 'Hostile' Rejection From St. Patrick's Day Parade Organizers: VIDEO" »


Gay Group Invited to South Boston St. Patrick's Day Parade, But Can't Identify as Gay: VIDEO

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In a deal brokered by Mayor Martin Walsh, organizers of South Boston’s St. Patrick’s Day parade have invited MassEquality, an LGBT rights group, to march in this year's parade , with one condition, the Boston Globe reports:

MassequalityThe group, MassEquality, could not wear T-shirts or hold signs that include the word gay or refer to sexual orientation.

The paper adds:

In an interview Friday night, Walsh hailed the MassEquality invitation as a major breakthrough in a city that has become increasingly diverse in recent decades. He minimized the significance of the rule barring references to sexual orientation and said he would meet next week with parade organizers and MassEquality to work out details about signs and T-shirts.

“This is probably the biggest step in 20 years,” Walsh said. “I’m really encouraged. We’re going to talk about how we can make this happen, how we can make this a reality.”

The parade is scheduled for March 16. The groups are hopeful they can come to an agreement on signage and T-shirts.

Watch Walsh give an interview on Thursday about his refusal to march in the parade unless gay groups are included, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Gay Group Invited to South Boston St. Patrick's Day Parade, But Can't Identify as Gay: VIDEO" »


Speedo Santas Jingle Their Balls Through Boston: VIDEO

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Rob Wilson (aka BosGuy) sends us his annual look at Boston's Santa Speedo Run. It was chilly.

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Spoiler: The Grinch finished first this year.

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Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Continue reading "Speedo Santas Jingle Their Balls Through Boston: VIDEO" »


News: Marvel Vs. DC, Charlie Hunnam, Uganda, Apple

6a00d8341c730253ef019afff259e6970b Marvel Comics writer responds to a DC Comics executive who claims the lack of gay weddings in books DC publishes is due to the fact that superheroes are not supposed to be happy: "It's just lazy storytelling."

Charlie-hunnam-exits-fifty-shades-of-grey-movie6a00d8341c730253ef019afff259e6970b Charile Hunnam will not be Christian Grey after all.

6a00d8341c730253ef019afff259e6970b Documentary film director Roger Ross Williams on the rise of anti-gay animosity in Uganda: "Everyone I've talked to in my film has said, 'You know, look America's lost.' As marriage equality has passed, America is lost to them, but they are winning the war in Uganda. And they believe that this war will be won by eradicating what they believe is sexual sin, and that means homosexuality. And that message gets translated very differently in an African context."

6a00d8341c730253ef019afff259e6970b Boston mayoral candidate announces proposal to protect LGBT youth: "Martin J. Walsh released Friday what he called a comprehensive platform to protect gays and lesbians, including designated “safe spaces” for gay youths in schools."

6a00d8341c730253ef019afff259e6970b Justin Bieber's 'stache.

Ssjm1013apple001-L6a00d8341c730253ef019afff259e6970b Here's a preview of Apple's upcoming flying saucer-like new headquarters.

6a00d8341c730253ef019afff259e6970b Several national parks closed as part of the government shutdown have now re-opened - thanks to state money.

6a00d8341c730253ef019afff259e6970b Graham Norton on camp: "It’s a much harder thing to accept than being gay. Gay is easy. Being camp is difficult in that it comes with judgment all round."

6a00d8341c730253ef019afff259e6970b Richard Simmons gets doused in purple.

6a00d8341c730253ef019afff259e6970b Conservative political action committee. whose goal was essentially to notify voters San Diego mayoral candidate Carl DeMaio is gay, has been fined $7,500 violating campaign disclosure laws: "The group, called Conservatives for Gay Rights Supporting Carl DeMaio for Mayor 2012, did not provide the names of its principals or a valid street address, according to the city Ethics Commission, which announced the fine Friday. It also did not keep records explaining its expenditures, the commission said."


Gay Congressional Candidate Carl Sciortino Marries Partner

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Massachusetts State Representative Carl Sciortino (above right), 35, married his partner of over five years, Pem Brown, 29, on Saturday at the Old South Meeting House in Boston. The wedding comes in the finals days of Sciortino's primary bid for Massachusetts's 5th congressional seat. Sciortino spoke to The Washington Blade about how much things have changed for gay couples since he first took office, especially following the U.S. Supreme Court's landmark ruling in United States v. Windsor:

"I think the fact that I can get married as a congressional candidate in a middle of the election, and it’s not a big deal, not a controversy, is a sign of how far we’ve come in the last 10 years,” Sciortino said. "When I first ran for office in 2004 at the height of the marriage debate here, it was inconceivable then that I could 10 years later be getting married, and have it be recognized not only by the State of Massachusetts, but the federal government."

The location of the wedding, at Boston's Old South Meeting House, was also significant for Sciortino and Brown as it was the place where the LGBT community came to celebrate the 2003 state supreme court ruling that cleared the way for marriage equality in Massachusetts. Marc Solomon, national campaign director for Freedom to Marry, officiated the wedding and spoke of the symmetry of Carl's wedding and that red letter day almost a decade ago:

"Carl had been in that building just about 10 years ago on the day of that decision," Solomon said. "It was really cool, exciting and moving to be back there for the ceremony. It’s a place where lots of social movements and resistance movements had taken off, from the Boston Tea Party onwards."

Last month, Sciortino released a web ad where he came out to his Tea Party Republican father...as a proud Massachusetts liberal. Though he faces an uphill battle in the upcoming October 15 primary, according to The Washington Blade, the ad has had tremendous impact. One poll from The Progressive Change Campaign Committee shows Sciortino up by 29% among those who had seen the ad.

In case you missed it, you can check the ad out HERE.

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(Photos by Glenn Livermore Photography)


Boston Mayoral Candidate Michael Ross Talks About His Gay Mom

For the first time, Boston Mayoral candidate Michael Ross talks with the Boston Herald about his gay mom, describing what it was like to grow up with her and how it shaped who he is. His mom, Suzanna London, told him she was gay in the early 80's:

Ross“She’s in love with a woman. What am I supposed to do with this?” Ross remembered thinking back when he was 12 and 13 and anxious, like any teenager, to fit in, not stand out. His response to his mother: anger. “I moved back in with my father for a few months.”

“It was a year,” corrected his mother.

“I didn’t want people to come to my house or ask questions about me and my family,” said Ross. “I never told anyone.”

“But they knew two women were living together in a house,” his mother said. “Kids were cruel.”

At school some called Ross’ mother names. “I’d deny (she was gay). ‘You don’t know what you’re talking about,’ I’d say.”

And no one did talk about it openly. Not at school or in their Newton neighborhood or at temple and Hebrew school. Not even, for a while, at home.

“I was living in the shadows,” London said.

“They were closeted even in their own house,” says Ross, remembering how his mother and her partner slept in separate bedrooms.

“I’m first and foremost a mother. You’re as happy as your most happy child,” his mother said. “I never knew how hard it was for him.”

Ross 's father Stephen was rescued from the Dachau concentration camp, his whole family having been killed by Nazis.

Added Ross:

“It’s where my values come from, these two amazing people with radically different lives.”


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