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Suspect In Nebraska Gay Pride Flag Arson Case Heads To Trial: VIDEO

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A Nebraska man arrested on suspicion of taking his neighbor’s pride flag off their front porch and burning it is officially headed to trial reports wowt.com. Cameron Mayfield attended a preliminary hearing with his defense attorney, James Martin Davis, in a Douglas County court room Wednesday morning. 

Davis asked that his client’s felony charge be reduced to a misdemeanor charge, arguing Mayfield didn’t know the couple is gay and doesn’t know that rainbow flags symbolize the gay community. The prosecution objected, arguing that the rainbow flag has symbolized the gay community for more than 40 years; the judge rejected Davis’ request, noting that a hearing is to establish probable cause to a crime, not to ascertain guilt or innocence.

Mayfield now faces a felony arson charge and hate crime and is headed to trial at a later date. Omaha Police Department Burglary Detective Chad Simmons noted in his testimony that the Mayfield family had a sign posted in their yard that read "Protect Traditional Marriage" six months before the crime occurred.

Screen Shot 2015-04-17 at 2.15.43 PMThe couple, Ariann Anderson and Jessica Meadows, filed a Harassment Protection Order against Mayfield after the incident; the court granted their request. The couple filed the order after police detectives informed the couple that Mayfield was making "delusional claims about stalking." At the time of the incident Mayfield's father told detectives that his son had recently lost his job and was drinking leading up to the incident. The couple has since replaced the flag and announced that they plan to marry again in their home state after a federal judge struck down the state’s same-sex marriage ban.

After the hearing, Mayfield issued an apology on-air to the couple saying that it was a prank and that he doesn't "hate anybody or anything." The couple feels quite differently.

Said Ariann Anderson:

"Regarding Mr. Mayfield's comments: a prank is defined as a 'trick of an amusing or playful nature.' Mr. Mayfield's actions were neither amusing or playful. The events that night were frightening, especially considering that we have small children at home."

Watch Mayfield's on-air apology, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Mortal Kombat Series Debuts First Gay Fighting Character: VIDEO

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The Mortal Kombat series, known for its gory fatalities and ultraviolet combat, has introduced its first gay fighting character reports Kotaku. Former thief turned Shaolin monk Kung Jin, cousin of series staple Kung Lao, hinted at his sexuality during a discussion in the game with fellow series staple Raiden about joining the White Lotus Society like his cousin Kung Lao. Despite Raiden’s urgings about joining the secret society, Jin says that he, "Can't…They won’t accept…" with the thunder god comforting the thief saying, "They care about only what is in your heart; not whom your heart desires."

NetherRealm Studios Cinematic Director Dominic Cianciolo confirmed Jin’s orientation in a tweet saying "I see people are picking up on the subtle exposition contained in Kung Jin’s flashback. Glad we have observant fans!" The latest iteration in the Mortal Kombat series, Mortal Kombat X, released on Tuesday.

You can watch the scene in question, AFTER THE JUMP...

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'Looking' Star Danny Franzese Talks Body Positivity, Bears And More With James St. James: VIDEO

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Mean Girls and Looking actor Danny Franzese sat down with James St. James this week to talk body positivity in the gay community, HIV awareness, PrEP and his plans for the future.

Franzese also discusses his journey to self-acceptance, and how going shirtless in Bully helped him overcome his fixation on his weight.

Check out the frank, funny discussion, AFTER THE JUMP

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Louisiana High School Bans Lesbian Student From Wearing Tuxedo To Prom

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A Louisiana high school banned one of its premier gay honor students from wearing a tuxedo to prom, claiming that she would violate dress code reports USA Today. Monroe High School Senior Claudetteia Love, who participated in the school’s high-achieving medical magnet program and is considered an academic superstar, was crushed at the news that she couldn’t attend her prom on April 24 if she wore a tuxedo.

Said Love: 

"I told my mom, 'They're using me. They put me in all these honors and advanced placement classes so I can take all of these tests and get good grades and better the school, but when it's time for me to celebrate the fact that I've accomplished what I need to accomplish and I'm about to graduate, they don't want to let me do it, the way I want to.'"

Love is set to represent her school at the annual Scholar’s Banquet; an event for the top students in Ouachita Parish. Geraldine Jackson, Love’s mother, discussed the issue with Principal Patrick Taylor, and received a different explanation as to why her daughter was banned from wearing a tuxedo to the prom.

Said Jackson:

"He said that the faculty that is working the prom told him they weren't going to work the prom if (girls) were going to wear tuxes. That’s his exact words. 'Girls wear dresses and boys wear tuxes, and that's the way it is.' 

"I feel like he's taking his values and throwing them on my daughter because of what her preference is and what she represents."

Love intended to attend the prom with a group of friends, but didn’t plan on bringing a date with her. Love’s friends have since chosen not to attend the prom because of the no-tux rule imposed on Love. Several members of her senior class launched a petition to change the rule but faculty have yet to act on it. However, Monroe City School Board President Rodney McFarland contacted The News-Star to announce that he is personally taking action on Love’s behalf, and that he will contact Superintendent Brent Vidrine and request that he discuss the rule with Principal Taylor.

Said McFarland:

"As school board president, I don't agree with Carroll banning her from her prom just because of what she wants to wear - that's discrimination. As far as I know there is no Monroe City School Board policy saying what someone has to wear to attend the prom. You can't just go making up policies."

The ACLU of Louisiana has also stepped in and written a letter to Superintendent Vidrine letting the district know that prohibiting a female student from wearing a tux "violates not only the laws against sex discrimination but also the First Amendment's right to free expression."


D.C. Mayor Appoints Local LGBT Activist To Newly Created Deputy Mayor Position

Screen Shot 2015-04-03 at 1.40.27 PMD.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser announced on Wednesday that she named local lesbian activist and public affairs lobbyist Courtney Snowden as her administration’s Deputy Mayor for Greater Economic Opportunity, a new position within the executive office of the mayor reports The Washington Blade. Snowden, who originally ran for a seat on D.C.’s City Council as an independent, is the highest ranking LGBT official in the Bowser administration and the fourth gay or lesbian appointee named to a cabinet-level position.

Over the last 10 years Snowden has worked as a lobbyist and public policy strategist for both corporate and non-profit clients for the Raben Group, a D.C.-based public relations and communications firm founded by gay attorney Robert Raben. Snowden has also worked in several policy positions for the Human Rights Campaign, the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network and then-Wisconsin Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin. Snowden also served on Bowser’s mayoral transition team prior to Bowser taking office on Jan. 1. 

The D.C. government website posted a revised organization chart showing the newly created post of Deputy Mayor for Greater Economic Opportunity as one of four deputy mayor’s positions. According to Bowser the deputy mayor "will be charged with creating solutions to improve outcomes for residents who face challenges to entering the workforce or starting their own ventures."

 


Gay Couple Pen Adorable Meghan Trainor Parody 'Dear Future Baby' to Highlight Adoption Efforts: WATCH

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Minneapolis couple Joe Morales and Joey Famoso have experienced a tough road on the way to adoption, with their latest attempt to adopt a baby girl falling through at the last second. Instead of dwelling on the heartache of their situation, the two created a viral parody video set to Meghan Trainor’s song "Dear Future Husband," called "Dear Future Baby" - an ode to their future baby boy or girl. The couple wrote and sang the song together to share their message with the world and shared  why they wrote the song with TODAY Parents 

Said Morales:

"We wanted to do something different that stood out, but also showed our personalities. We were very intentional about the words used in the song to illustrate the type of dads we will be. There are so many great families for a birthmother to choose, and by doing this, we hope to be one of the top on her list."

Although the Internet has already generated potential leads for the couple, they’re aware that a lot can happen in the adoption process before they’re connected to a baby. However, the couple remains hopeful after all the support they’ve received from the online community; even Meghan Trainor commented on the parody in On Air with Ryan Seacrest, calling the parody "the cutest thing ever - I’m gonna tweet it."

The couple also has an informational site through their adoption agency and a group page devoted to their adoption efforts on Facebook.

Watch the two sing about what their future baby’s life will be like with them, and the sweet things they’ll do for their baby, AFTER THE JUMP

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