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TLC Pulls '19 Kids and Counting,' Issues Statement in Wake of 'Heartbreaking' Molestation Allegations

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TLC has issued a statement on its decision to pull 19 Kids and Counting from its schedule in the wake of allegations that Josh Duggar sexually abused five underage girls over a decade ago. 

JoshduggarJosh, the eldest son of the Duggar clan featured on the show, resigned from his position as executive director of the anti-gay hate group Family Research Council's lobbying arm yesterday, saying in a statement "Twelve years ago, as a young teenager, I acted inexcusably for which I am extremely sorry and deeply regret. I hurt others, including my family and close friends."

Wrote the network on its Facebook page:

Effective immediately, TLC has pulled all episodes of 19 Kids and Counting currently from the air. We are deeply saddened and troubled by this heartbreaking situation, and our thoughts and prayers are with the family and victims at this difficult time.

Last November, a petition calling on TLC to cancel the show over the Duggars' "LGBT fear mongering" caught fire on the internet and amassed over 100,000 signatures. 


News: Hillary Clinton, Eiffel Tower, Magic Mike XXL, Joe Jonas, Belize

Road State Department releases hundreds of emails from former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Benghazi. 

CooperRoad First look at Bradley Cooper and the rest of the returning "teenagers" for Netflix's Wet Hot American Summer: First Day at Camp.

Road Petition calling on TLC to cancel 19 Kids and Counting in the wake of Josh Duggar's molestation allegations grows to over 12,000 signatures.   

Road Joe Jonas gets naughty with Adam Levine on Instagram.

Road Reese Witherspoon cast as Tinkerbell in Tink, Disney's upcoming live adaptation of the Neverland fairy. 

Road Northern Ireland Assembly won't punish the country's former Health Minister Jim Wells for claiming gay parents are more likely to abuse children than straight parents. 

Road Mindy Kaling and B.J. Novak to pen book about their relationship

EiffelRoad Eiffel Tower staff on strike to demand more help dealing with pickpokets in the area. 

Road The religious right is unsurprisingly furious with Boy Scouts President Robert Gates' call for the organization to end its ban on gay adults

Road Yet another Antarctic ice mass is becoming destabilized. "Thursday in Science, researchers from the University of Bristol in Britain, along with researchers from Germany, France and the Netherlands, reported on the retreat of a suite of glaciers farther south from Larsen B and C along the Bellingshausen Sea, in a region known as the Southern Antarctic Peninsula."

Road Baltimore grand jury indicts all six police officers who had been charged in the death of Freddie Gray.

Road Released emails show Florida's then-Governor Jeb Bush struggling to explain his opposition to gay adoption.

Road India's first gay matrimonial ad courts controversy for having caste requirement. 

MikeRoad Brad Pitt's World War Z sequel gets June 9, 2016 release date

Road The gang's all here in the new Magic Mike XXL poster.

Road CBS has already scrapped David Letterman's Late Show set. 

Road NYT looks at the lonely fight against Belize's anti-gay laws. "Belize has never had an inciting incident to catalyze a movement, like the 1969 Stonewall uprising. There is no annual Gay Pride parade. No member of government or other prominent figure has ever come out. No gay bars or ritual “safe spaces” exist as places for people to meet, just carefully organized house parties and private encounters on Facebook. The L.G.B.T. community in Belize, with the exception of a dedicated corps of organizers and supporters, remains timid, fractured and apolitical. Unibam itself has only 128 members, in part because of people’s concern that their names could be made public."

Road Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) likens Chris Christie's support for the PATRIOT Act to "political pornography."

Road Longtime activist Cleve Jones pens op-ed marking Harvey Milk's 85th birthday. "As I look back over the decades, I marvel at the progress our community has made in achieving our rights and know that Harvey would be proud. And as we wait for the Supreme Court’s decision on marriage equality, I know that Harvey would remind us that our struggle is not yet won — no matter what the court decides."


Franklin Graham: Boy Scouts President 'Put Young, Innocent Boys at Risk' Calling for End to Gay Adult Ban

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Franklin Graham, son of anti-gay evangelical leader Billy Graham, is speaking out against Boy Scouts of America president Robert Gates and his call for the BSA to end its ban on gay adult leaders.

Wrote Graham on Facebook

Robert Gates, shame on you for not having the moral courage to do what is right. Yesterday Gates, the president of Boy...

Posted by Franklin Graham on Friday, May 22, 2015

Souther Baptist Convention spokesman Roger "Sing" Oldham has also spoken out against Gates' announcement, saying the Boy Scouts "have planted the seed of their eventual destruction.”


Mike Huckabee Stands By Duggar Clan in Wake of Molestation Allegations, Decries 'Bloodthirsty Media'

Huckabee

Mike Huckabee is throwing his support behind reality TV's embattled Duggar clan in the wake of allegations that eldest son Josh Duggar sexually abused five underage girls over a decade ago. 

Josh Duggar resigned from his position as executive director of the anti-gay hate group Family Research Council's lobbying arm yesterday, saying in a statement "Twelve years ago, as a young teenager, I acted inexcusably for which I am extremely sorry and deeply regret. I hurt others, including my family and close friends."

Wrote Huckabee on Facebook:

Janet and I want to affirm our support for the Duggar family. Josh’s actions when he was an underage teen are as he described them himself, 'inexcusable,' but that doesn’t mean 'unforgivable.' He and his family dealt with it and were honest and open about it with the victims and the authorities. No purpose whatsoever is served by those who are now trying to discredit Josh or his family by sensationalizing the story. Good people make mistakes and do regrettable and even disgusting things. The reason that the law protects disclosure of many actions on the part of a minor is that the society has traditionally understood something that today’s blood-thirsty media does not understand—that being a minor means that one's judgement is not mature. No one needs to defend Josh’s actions as a teenager, but the fact that he confessed his sins to those he harmed, sought help, and has gone forward to live a responsible and circumspect life as an adult is testament to his family’s authenticity and humility. Those who have enjoyed revealing this long ago sins in order to discredit the Duggar family have actually revealed their own insensitive bloodthirst, for there was no consideration of the fact that the victims wanted this to be left in the past and ultimately a judge had the information on file destroyed—not to protect Josh, but the innocent victims. Janet and I love Jim Bob and Michelle and their entire family. They are no more perfect a family than any family, but their Christian witness is not marred in our eyes because following Christ is not a declaration of our perfection, but of HIS perfection. It is precisely because we are all sinners that we need His grace and His forgiveness. We have been blessed to receive God’s love and we would do no less than to extend our love and support for our friends. In fact, it is such times as this, when real friends show up and stand up. Today, Janet and I want to show up and stand up for our friends. Let others run from them. We will run to them with our support

In Touch, the tabloid that broke the story earlier this week, reported yesterday that Duggar patriarch Jim Bob waited more than a year after his son Josh confessed to sexually molesting several female minors before contacting police. 

The Washington Post notes Huckabee recently received the endorsement of the Duggar family in the 2016 presidential race. 

The Duggars are the stars of TLC's 19 Kids and Counting and have been active opponents of LGBT rights. The network announced today it would pull the show from its schedule as a result of the controversy. 


Michael Sam Signs With Canadian Football League's Montreal Alouettes

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Michael Sam is finally getting his shot on the gridiron, albeit now in Canada:

The Montreal Alouettes of the Canadian Football League announced Friday that they have signed Sam to a two-year deal. Sam spent parts of last season with the St. Louis Rams and Dallas Cowboys, but did not play a regular-season snap for either team.

NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport reports that Sam signed a one-year deal with a team option year, according to Sam's agent, Joe Barkett. Sam became the first openly gay player in NFL history when he was selected by St. Louis in the seventh round of the 2014 NFL Draft.

"With the signing of Michael Sam, we have become a better organization today," said Alouettes' general manager Jim Popp. "Not only have we added an outstanding football player, we have added even a better person that brings dignity, character, and heart to our team."

Sam will be introduced at a news conference in Montreal on Tuesday, according to the CBC:

Alouettes"Congratulations to the Montreal Alouettes on the signing of Michael Sam," CFL commissioner Jeffrey Orridge said in a statement released by the league. "Our players come to us from different places, different walks of life and ultimately they take different paths to get to our fields. Today is another indication of how open and progressive the CFL is — consistent with our rich and storied history of great football tradition. Welcome to Montreal, Michael!"


A Trip to Vienna For The Glamorous and Gargantuan Life Ball AIDS Benefit: Towleroad Abroad

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It’s one thing to hear about Life Ball, the enormous charity extravaganza that takes over Vienna annually to raise support for HIV/AIDS charities, but it’s quite another to experience it first hand. The over-the-top affair, including palatial parties and star-studded spectacles, attracts all sorts of guests, from the fabulous to the fringe.

Above all, Life Ball, organized by AIDS LIFE, is dedicated to supporting organizations that work with people who are HIV-positive or have AIDS. The annual event is the largest AIDS charity event in Europe. Its massive impact is fueled by the scale, grandeur and, yes, at times, rowdiness of the party that draws in the big names, big crowds and, most importantly, big dollars. In 2014, for example, Life Ball raised 2.3 million euros from tickets, drink sales, an auction and other events. (For more on Life Ball’s charitable impact, see our post here.)

We joined a small army of media, celebrities and drag queens venturing to Vienna last weekend to witness all of the Life Ball Austrian adventure for ourselves. Although we’re still recovering from a fab 48 hours in the capital city, we’ve got plenty of highlights to share.

The hills are alive with the sound of YAS GAWD, AFTER THE JUMP

Continue reading "A Trip to Vienna For The Glamorous and Gargantuan Life Ball AIDS Benefit: Towleroad Abroad" »


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