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George Takei to Lead Upcoming Seattle Pride Parade as Celebrity Grand Marshal

George takei

Seattle is in for a real treat this June as organizers for the city’s Pride Parade have just announced that gay icon George Takei will serve as Celebrity Grand Marshal. 

Writes Seattle Out & Proud:

George_Takei_Chicago_Gay_&_Lesbian_Pride_2006With a career spanning more than five decades, Takei is known around the world for his founding role in the acclaimed television series Star Trek, in which he played Hikaru Sulu, helmsman of the Starship Enterprise.  Takei starred in three seasons of Star Trek and later reprised his iconic role in six movies.  As an actor, social justice activist, social media power, author of “Lions and Tigers and Bears: The Internet Strikes Back” and “Oh Myyy! There Goes the Internet,” and star of upcoming Broadway musical Allegiance, Takei has used his roles and public persona to advance LGBT and human rights around the world.  Mashable.com reports Takei is the most-influential person on Facebook, with more than 6.4 million likes. Takei has more than one million followers on Twitter.

The Seattle Pride Parade is scheduled to take place Sunday, June 29 at 11:00am on 4th Avenue, downtown. 


Gay Former Vice Principal Mark Zmuda Suing School That Fired Him: VIDEO

Mark Zmuda files lawsuit

Late last year Eastside Catholic High School vice principal Mark Zmuda was given a choice: divorce his husband or be fired. Zmuda refused to sacrifice his marriage for his job and was let go. Rather than being some incident kept quiet and swept under the rug, students and faculty of ECH loudly protested the unjust treatment, protests which kept going even into the new year and ultimately drove the school president Sister Mary Tracy to resign.

The school's problems with the incident are far from over as Zmuda is now filing a lawsuit against the school and the Seattle Archdiocese for discrimination and wrongful termination. The Archdiocese has already drafted a motion for dismissal, claiming that Zmuda knew his marriage - much like the divorce, which Jesus condemns in Matthew 19:3-6, that they tried to force him to get - went against the teachings of the church. However, prior to Zmuda's termination the ECH website stated explicitly that (bolding mine),

Eastside Catholic School does not discriminate on the basis of an employee’s or applicant’s race, religion, creed, color, sex, age, national origin, disability, marital status, sexual orientation or any other status or condition protected by local, state or federal law.

The statement has since been removed from the school's live website, but everything lives forever on the internet.

The lawsuit was filed today, and you can see King 5's news report on the story
AFTER THE JUMP...

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Seattle Arson Investigated As Hate Crime, Bail Set At $1 Million

Musab Masmari

In the latest development of Seattle's gay bar arsonist, police have determined that Musab Musmari is a flight risk and have thus set his bail at $1 million. This determination was reached in light of the fact that when SPD arrested Musmari as he was leaving home he was in possession of his U.S. and Libyan passports and a one-way airline ticket to Turkey.

Meanwhile, the FBI, working on the case as part of the Joint Terrorism Task Force, are investigating the case as a possible hate crime, and friends and victims of Musmari have described him as having increasingly volatile and unstable behavior over the past year.


Police Make Arrest in Seattle New Years Eve Gay Nightclub Arson: VIDEO

Masmari

Police have made an arrested 30-year-old Musab Masmari in connection with the arson at Seattle's Neighbours gay nightclub on New Year's Eve, KING5 reports:

Police took Masmari into custody as he was en route to the airport.  Police say following the arrest, Masmari was interviewed by detectives and later booked into the King County Jail for Investigation of Arson.

It was just after midnight on New Year's Eve while nearly 700 people crammed into Neighbours for a celebration when customers noticed the staircase at the iconic gay club was on fire. Management at the iconic gay club in Capitol Hill later discovered a gasoline container near the stairs.

A surveillance video released by police led to the identification of Masmari. His motives are still unknown. 750 people were inside the nightclub at the time. Slog has more on MAsmari's background HERE.

Watch KING5's report, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Man Arrested For Violent Threats Against Gay Seattle Mayor, City Council Member

TaylorseattleMitchell Munro Taylor, 32, was arrested last Thursday on charges of cyberstalking and malicious harassment after posting over twenty anti-gay statements on Seattle mayor Ed Murray's Facebook page. The posts threatened violence against not only Murray, but also city council member Kshama Sawant.

The Seattle Times reports:

One post said, “Mayor meet Harvey Milk,” a reference to slain San Francisco board of supervisors member Harvey Milk.

Milk, who was openly gay, was murdered in 1978.

Other posts said “death to socialist council member” and “feminists must get raped and die.”

...

Murray, when interviewed by police, said he found the comments posted on his Facebook page to be very offensive and considered some to be death threats, according to the probable-cause affidavit filed Friday by Ernsdorff.

While Sawant wasn’t named directly in the postings, police believe she was the target because she is the only socialist on the council. Sawant, who was elected to the Seattle City Council in November, told police that “she was concerned for her safety and the safety of her family,” the affidavit said.

Taylor's defense attorney, Eric Lindell, reported that Taylor has Asperger's syndrome and had been off of his medications when the posts were made, though just how those facts play in remain unclear. Lindell asked for bail to be set at $10,000, while prosecutor Gary Ernsdorff requested a far more significant sum of $1 million. On Friday, Taylor's bail was set at $600,000 in the King County District Court presided over by Judge Arthur Chapman.

Taylor reportedly has no prior criminal record. 

Photo via Seattle Times.


Seattle's First Gay Mayor Ed Murray Lays Out First Year Plans: VIDEO

Murray

Ed Murray, Seattle's first gay mayor and first mayor in a same-sex marriage, sits down with local station KIRO to talk about plans for his first year in office.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

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