Blues with a Lavender Blush

LHv6AEvery Labor Day Weekend KZUM has their Blues Blow Out. 83 hours of nothing but the Blues. This means that for those 83 hours all other programs are preempted. Including Lavender Hill with Corwin and Phil.

Corwin gladly took on the challenge again this year to fill the hour with Blues music by LGBTQ artists. Following is the list of music played, a few of the pieces were contributed by Phil. Both would like to say thank you to JD Doyle of Queer Music Heritage for the hard work that he has been putting over the years to give the world a history of music from the LGBTQ perspective.

MUSIC list for 31 August 2014

  1. Freakish Man – The Vinyl Closet – Pink, Black, and Blues
  2. Blues Oh Blues – Ma Rainey – Black Bottom
  3. The Man I Love – Billy Tipton – Sweet Georgia Brown
  4. Wild Honey – Hugh Lawry – Didn’t It Rain
  5. Banana in My Fruit Basket – Vicki D’Salle – Live at Pride Alive
  6. Alexander’s Ragtime Band – Bessie Smith – Empress of the Blues Vol. 2
  7. Walkin’, Talkin’ Haunted House – Candye Kane – Sister Vagabond
  8. Cemetery Blues – Bessie Smith  – The Complete Recordings  Vol. 1
  9. The Dog Was Here First – Gaye Adegbalola – Bittersweet Blues
  10. Lucky Rock Blues – Ma Rainey – Black Bottom
  11. Too Old Maids – The Vinyl Closet – Pink, Black, and Blues
  12. Lush Life – Billy Strayhorn – Lush LIfe
  13. Blue Spirit Blues – Bessie Smith – The Complete Recordings Vol. 1
  14. She Just Wants to Dance – Gaye Adegbalola – Bittersweet Blues

We’ll return to regular programming for Lavender Hill next Sunday, the 7th of September.

Lavender Hill Op-Ed: LGBT protections on the federal level

LHv6APresident Obama is slated to sign an executive order on Monday 21 July 2014 that would protect LGBT federal employees and employees of federally contracted companies from discrimination in hiring and firing. Many contracted companies already have such protections on the books as well as 21 states have protections for LGBT citizens in regards to employment and public accommodations.

In a Talking Points Memo dated 2 July, Dylan Scott wrote that almost immediately after the SCOTUS ruling regarding religious exemptions in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) in favor of Hobby Lobby and other privately owned businesses with a strong religious leaning in ownership many religiously owned institutions and businesses were petitioning the president for similar religious exemptions to his proposed executive order. Similar religious exemptions are written into the current draft of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) that was recently passed by the Senate and sits before the GOP-controlled House this session. The religious exemptions in ENDA have caused many LGBT rights groups to drop drop their support. The Human Rights Campaign being one of the only groups to maintain their support.


Read Phil’s op-ed on the SCOTUS ruling.


Read Phil’s op-ed piece on LGBT civil rights group dropping support for ENDA.


With Obama signing this executive order only federal employees and the employees of federally contracted companies are protected from discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. Outside of the 21 states that have such laws and those companies around the country that also protect their employees from such discrimination, people can still be fired because of their sexual orientation or gender identity (or perceived sexual orientation/gender identity). In my state of Nebraska that means that only those who work for the federal government in some capacity will be protected in the hiring and firing process (as well as for consideration for promotion) and those who are lucky enough to work for a company that has similar protections (and residents of Omaha). Fortunately, I work for such a company. As indicated in my earlier pieces (see above links), I have been lucky enough to work for many such companies over the years. But not everyone is that lucky.

On Tuesday 8 July over 100 faith leaders in the United States sent a letter to Obama, along with a press release to several major media outlets, urging the President to not include religious exemptions in any executive order from his administration. One of those leaders, Rev. Serene Jones, president of Union Theological Seminary,  included in the press release this statement, in part:

“As people of faith, we should be exemplary and not exempted. Jesus came to protect the most vulnerable. The faith community that taught me never to throw stones should not have special permission from the White House to throw stones. It is simply theologically indefensible.”

This letter arrived on Obama’s desk a week after a letter from a large number of faith leaders, many of them his own advisers, urging him to include such exemptions.

“An executive order that does not include a religious exemption will significantly and substantively hamper the work of some religious organizations that are best equipped to serve in common purpose with the federal government. When the capacity of religious organizations is limited, the common good suffers.”

You can read the entire letter against exemptions, and the list of signatories, at Huffington Post.

QueerProud Monthly has been following a story that shows what kind of damage these religious exemptions can do. A transgender student at George Fox University in Oregon has been denied housing in the men’s dorm because the religiously owned institution doesn’t accept transgender as valid. Socially, medically, and legally Jayce M is a man. He was born a woman and that is the argument that GFU is using to bar him from single apartment dwelling in the men’s dorm. The Department of Education has upheld their decision to bar him, citing a religious exemption in the 1972 version of Title IX, the updated Title IX (from 2010 includes protections for LGBT students). The religious exemption from 1972 carried over to the 2010 version.

“This section shall not apply to an educational institution which is controlled by a religious organization if the application of this subsection would not be consistent with the religious tenets of such organization.”

Religious exemptions don’t protect religious institutions, they harm people. The federal government should be working to protect everyone. Institutions of higher learning should be educating their students. Citizens of the United States won’t have equality, protection from discrimination, without the government and religious stepping up to the plate and protect, treat equal, everyone within the borders.

Phil in StudioPhil is one of the hosts of L“As people of faith, we should be exemplary and not exempted,” Rev. Dr. Serene Jones, president of Union Theological Seminary, said in a press release sent to The Huffington Post. “Jesus came to protect the most vulnerable. The faith community that taught me never to throw stones should not have special permission from the White House to throw stones. It is simply theologically indefensible.”avender Hill on KZUM-Lincoln/KZUM-HD. KZUM is Nebraska’s first and only community radio station, Lavender Hill is Nebraska’s only LGBTQQIA news and talk program on radio. The views and opinions expressed in this op-ed are not necessarily those of KZUM, it’s board of directors, underwriters, or staff. Nor are they necessarily those of Corwin, Phil’s cohost on Lavender Hill. Lavender Hill can be found on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+. The show airs live every Sunday at 11am Central. Email the hosts with questions, comments, or suggestions for the show at lavenderhill89.3@gmail.com.

Phil is also known as RevKess on the Pagan-Musings Podcast Channel.

 

Lavender Hill: Op-Ed: ENDA, why LGBT activists are abandoning ship

LHv6AIn light of the recent Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) decision (read Phil’s earlier piece) regarding the limited religious exemption for Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Woods in regards to the Patient Protection and Affordable Healthcare Act (Obamacare), the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force has decided to withdraw their support for the current version of the Employment Non Discrimination Act (ENDA) that is sitting before Congress. The Washington Post, through their blog, reported on this Tuesday, shortly after the announcement was made.

From the Washington Post:

[A] coalition led by the American Civil Liberties Union, Lambda Legal and the National Center for Lesbian Rights said in a joint statement that they also would be withdrawing support. The bill’s religious exemptions clause is written so broadly that “ENDA’s discriminatory provision, unprecedented in federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination, could provide religiously affiliated organizations – including hospitals, nursing homes and universities – a blank check to engage in workplace discrimination against LGBT people,” the group said, adding later that if ENDA were to pass Congress, “the most important federal law for the [lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender] community in American history would leave too many jobs, and too many LGBT workers, without protection.”

It should be interesting to note that one of the best recognized “activist” groups for LGBT rights is absent from that every growing list of groups that has withdrawn their support of ENDA.  That group being the Human Rights Campaign. Listeners of Lavender Hill know that Corwin has a strong stand against HRC for their push for heteronormalizing of the LGBT community.

ENDA, as it is written right now, contains a religious exemption component. “ENDA’s religious exemption recognizes that the U.S. Constitution protects certain employment decisions of religious organizations and that some religious organizations may have a specific and significant religious reason to make employment decisions, even those that take an individual’s sexual orientation or gender identity into account. It also acknowledges that gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) employees of religious organizations should be aware that they could lose their jobs, even jobs that do not serve a clearly religious function, because of sexual orientation or gender identity.” This breaks down into three parts (from CivilRights.org):

  • A complete exemption for houses of worship, parochial and similar religious schools, and missions
  • A codification of the so-called “ministerial exemption” recognized by many federal courts, exempting positions at religious organizations that involve the teaching or spreading religion, religious governance, or the supervision of individuals engaged in these activities
  • A provision allowing religious organizations, for classes of jobs, to require employees and applicants to conform to a declared set of significant religious tenets, including ones which would bar LGBT people from holding the position

I own two businesses. I’ve worked in the real world for the better part of my life. I’ve worked fast food, retail, customer service. I’ve done a lot of things to pay the bills. In my experience I have seen the necessity of the accepted idea “We reserve the right to refuse service.” I can even see where certain small businesses, privately owned, may feel that they have the right to refuse service to anyone who represents a violation of their deeply held religious beliefs. What I don’t understand is the resistance to follow federally mandated regulations and laws that are constructed to protect not only the individual, but the business.

I live in Nebraska. There is only one city in the entire state that it is illegal for me to be fired because I am gay. Omaha passed a city ordinance a few years back that added protections for lesbians, gays, and bisexuals to their non discrimination law. Lincoln, Grand Island, and Kearney all three have tried to pass similar ordinances. Lincoln’s was passed, but it was put on hold by the same city council that passed it after a voter petition succeeded in gaining more than enough signatures to require the ordinance be put before the population during the general elections. The city council has not brought it forward for a ballot vote yet.

Though Lincoln does not have such protections, many of the companies I have worked for over the  years do have such protections in their non discrimination policies. In recent years the only exception to that would be when I worked for Hobby Lobby seasonally five and six years ago. Even the current company that I work for has such protections. At this point in my life, I would not work for a company that did not.

Almost immediately after the decision was announced by SCOTUS in regards to the contraception case with Hobby Lobby businesses and organizations across the country began petitioning President Obama and the courts for religious exemptions that could allow them to discriminate against people of color, other religions, national origins, let alone discriminate based on sexual orientation or gender identity. With the hotly anticipated executive order from Obama that would make it illegal for federal contractors to discriminate against the LGBT community in hiring, promotion, and firing of employees many of these companies are federal contractors. There has been hint, mostly rumor, that some small businesses might use the SCOTUS ruling to allow them to refuse service to individuals that are perceived to be “different” from those business owners’ religious beliefs.

I still maintain that privately owned businesses, in cities/states that do not have protections for the LGBT community in their non discrimination policies/laws, have the ability to refuse service to LGBT people. This means that a bakery specializing in wedding cakes can refuse to make a cake for a same sex wedding if that bakery is in a city/state that does not have such protections. This also means that a landlord or rental agency can evict a tenant that they perceive to be gay under the same legal circumstances. This does not mean that a privately owned business can refuse to provide their services to a black man, a Jew, a woman, or an elderly or disabled person. Those situations are covered by federal protections.

A grey area you say? No. An opportunity. When someone is refused services because they are or are perceived to be gay, lesbian, bi, transgender, etc then that person has the right to sue.  Such a suit may lead to legal precedent in that city/state that could lead to the addition of protections for LGBTQ people to local or state (or even federal) non discrimination laws.

Phil Kessler is one of the hosts of Lavender Hill on KZUM in Lincoln, NE. KZUM is Nebraska’s first and onlyPhil in Studio community radio station. Lavender Hill is perhaps the only LBT/SOGI news and talk program on Nebraska radio, locally produced or otherwise. The opinions expressed in this op-ed piece or his alone and do not reflect the opinions or beliefs of his co-host, KZUM – its programmers, employees, underwriters, or board of directors – nor do they necessarily reflect those of the producers and hosts of programming on the Pagan-Musings Podcast Channel and contributors to the PMPChannel.com blogsite.

Tune in every Sunday at 11am Central for Lavender Hill with Corwin and Phil on KZUM-Lincoln/KZUM-HD.

Lavender Hill: Heartland Pride & More

LHv6A

Click to Listen

Anthony Tirendi, president of Heartland Pride in the Omaha, Ne metro area, joined Corwin and Phil in the studio this week for a conversation about Pride, specifically about Heartland Pride. Anthony had never been on the radio before, but he did well. Pride this year in the Omaha air covers three days of official Heartland activities. Some of the local bars, churches and other organizations may also be hosting pride events around the metro area.

  • THURSDAY JUNE 26th: 8:00 PM Candlelight vigil and 9:00 PM viewing of the movie “MILK” atHeartland Pride 2014 logo Hanafan Park in Council Bluffs, IA
  •  FRIDAYJUNE 27th: 6:00 PM Youth Pride festival and evening dance at Hanafan Park in Council Bluffs, IA
  • SATURDAY JUNE 28th: 10:00 AM Heartland Pride Parade in Council Bluffs, IA followed by:  11:00 AM Festival and Entertainment to begin after the parade at Stinson Park in Omaha, NE

The Saturday festival has three main musical acts, all local to the area. Eckophonic, Voodoo Method!, and Recess Girls. The Recess Girls will also be in the Kid Corner after their stage appearance to meet with fans.

There is a small entry fee to attend the main event. Tickets can be purchased in advance through the website for $5 or at the gate for $10.

Lavender Hill being a news program, as well as a talk show, the hosts had some local, national and world news to talk about. Not nearly as much time for news as usual, but they squeezed some things in. It should be noted that many of the below links will take you to stories Corwin and Phil did not have to talk about this week.

Links to News Stories Covered During the Show

Marriage Equality

  • A brief opinion piece from the Lincoln Journal Star expresses the disappointment many have with the recent decision to deny the divorce of a lesbian couple in Nebraska.
  • Opponents to marriage equality in Pennsylvania missed the deadline to file an appeal to the decision to over turn the ban on same-sex marriage. Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum remains largely silent on the matter despite his past vocal stance on the issue.
  • South Dakota attorney general files to dismiss “implausible” marriage case. You can read the motion here.
  • The Presbyterian Assembly affirms that same-sex marriage is Christian. A vote is pending from all 172 presbyteries over the course of the next year to make it official. Until then, effective now is an amendment to the church constitution allowing ministers to perform gay marriages in state and municipalities where it is legal with approval from local congregational leaders.
  • A Michigan man is “shunned” by St. Michael’s Catholic Church in Marquette after his commitment ceremony shows that he “acts on’ urges.
  • The National Organization for Marriage claims 10.000 people attended their anti-gay marriage rally in D.C. last week. More accurate estimates say between two and six thousand attended.

Across the United States

Politics

  • The Senate made history last Tuesday by confirming, unanimously, the first openly gay African American judge to a high court. Darrin Gayles now sits on the bench for the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida.
  • The Texas GOP has some wacky ideas on their current political platform. Everything from pornography, the elderly, immigration and marriage equality.
  • Senator Ed Markey (D-Mass) has introduced a new bill that would create a special envoy for LGBT rights in foreign affairs. The International Human Rights Defense Act already has 20 co-sponsors, all Democrats.
  • CNBC’s Joe Kerner schools Texas Gov. Rick Perry on-air after Perry’s statements in California that copared homosexuality to alcoholism.

Queer World News

Health & Science

Arts & Entertainment

  • A Kickstarter campaign. is in full swing to support the filming of the first transgender comedy, staring Canada’s first transgender lingerie model Julie Vu.

Remember to tune in every Sunday at 11am Central to KZUM-HD/KZUM-Lincoln to hear Lavender Hill live. You can email Corwin and Phil at lavenderhill89.3@gmail.com and follow the show on Twitter.

Lavender Hill for 15 June 2014

LHv6AAs usual, Corwin and Phil tried to cram a lot of news into one hour, almost having to skip some of the music they had planned for the day. Rest assured, they did get all five pieces of music played. You can find the list of music at the end of this posting. Unfortunately the jump drive Phil was using to record the show malfunctioned, so there is not a podcast feed of the show at this time.

The lead story on Sunday 15 June 2014 was an update on the divorce appeal case before the Nebraska State Supreme Court. A lesbian couple wed in Iowa in 2009 filed for divorce in Lancaster County Nebraska. The divorce was denied on the grounds that it would require the state to recognize the marriage in the first place. Bonnie Nichols, one of the women involved, filed appeal with the State Supreme Court. According to an Associated Press article, the appeal was denied by the State with some wiggle room for a new appeal. LGBTQNation carried the article, along with many online and print media sources.

LINKS to ARTICLES

(not all were referred to during the broadcast) in no particular order

MUSIC

  1. Ryan Amador & Jo Lampert – Define Me – Ryan Amador
  2. Candye Kane – I Didn’t Listen to MY Heart – Songs from the Stage
  3. Sam Smith – Stay with Me – In the Lonely Hour
  4. Doug Strahm – Slumbertown – Freedom Rings
  5. Patricia Barber – You Don’t Me – Night Club

Remember to tune in every Sunday morning for the full live broadcast of Lavender Hill on KZUM-HD/KZUM-Lincoln. Listen on the web, on the radio (in Lincoln, NE) at 89.3FM, or use your favorite mobile listening app. You can find Lavender Hill on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.

Subscribe to the Lavender Hill Daily to get a daily dose of LGBTQA related news.

Lavender Hill for 8 June 2014

Lavender Hill airs live every Sunday morning at 11am Central on KZUM-HD/KZUM-Lincoln out of Lincoln, NE. For over three years Corwin and Phil have brought their listeners news, views, and interviews from the LGBTQIAA community with a focus on Lincoln and Omaha.

LINKS

In no particular order, here are links to much of what we discussed on this edition of Lavender Hill. Some may be to stories we didn’t have time to cover.

  • The Texas GOP has approved a platform for their 2014 campaign season that endorses reparative therapy, also known as conversion therapy. Reparative therapy has been shown to cause more harm than good. Developed decades ago to “cure” people of homosexuality, many states have already banned its use with adolescents and many psychologists and psychiatrists are pushing for it to be removed as an acceptable means of treatment for adults as well. Even former “x-gays” have made apologies for encouraging people to use reparative therapy.  The International of Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurses issued a position paper in 2001 on reparative therapy, you can read it here.
  • The legislative arm of Salt Lake City’s government has formally asked the organizers o the Days of ’47 Parade to reconsider their decision to disallow Mormons Building Bridges from participating in this year’s parade. Days of ’47 celebrates the mass migration of Mormons to the Salt Lake Valley in 1847. I have news for our Mormon friends, there were queer Mormons in 1847 and there are queer Mormons in 2014. Check out the official page for Mormons Building Bridges to learn more about this organization.
  • In related news, a police officer in Salt Lake City was suspended after refusing to work police security at the annual Gay Pride Parade.
  • In more Pride news, for the first time the US Armed Forces Color Guard will be participating in the Washington D.C. Pride. In 2013 an Armed Forces color guard did perform on the grounds of the Pentagon for a Defense Department pride event, and another performed there again this year.
  • Sex like gender is more fluid than most are willing to believe. Conservative blogger Kevin D. Williamson on National Review said that famous transgender actress Laverne Cox (Orange is the New Black) is not a woman. Ms. Cox graces the cover of a recent edition of  Time Magazine. Slate.com has a lengthy article discussing the fluidity of sex as well as gender, with plenty of links for more information.
  • Puerto Rico has nominated its first openly lesbian lawyer to the Supreme Court. Maite Oronzo Rodriguez was nominated by Governor Rico Alejandro Garcia Padilla on 4 June.
  • Actor John Lacy gets a standing ovation, but not for his role as Big Daddy in a production of “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.” Lacy threw a heckler and homophobe out of the audience in Act II. He was then fired by the director for his actions.
  • In a Rand Paul conference call, Republican E.W. Jackson says that “there is something wrong with them on the inside” in reference to LGBT people and liberals, that they are full of “hatred”.
  • General Mills and Lucky Charms cereal launched their second Lucky To Be campaign on 2 June. Read about it here and then visit the Lucky To Be site.
  • Woodrow Wilson High School principal Pete Cahall comes out to his students during their 2nd annual Pride event in D.C.
  • Last month Iowa rewrote the law that criminalized HIV transmission and this month in a symbolic gesture two men convicted of exposing their partners to HIV (knowingly or not) were freed from their GPS monitors.
  • On 4 June the constitution of Slovokia was amended to ban same-sex marriage, IGLA-Europe issues a statement condemning the act.
  • In related news, the CDC and DOJ have released a report on the 33 states (67 laws) that have criminalized HIV transmission since 1987. POZ Magazine’s Ron Valdiserri wrote this op-ed piece in April of this year.
  • The United Nations is treading thin ice with the global LGBTQIAA community with the nomination of Ugandan Samuel Kutesa to the presidency of the General Assembly. No member nation has yet voiced a formal protest. Kutesa has even received support from US Secretary of State John Kerry and UK Foreign Minister William Hague. Kutesa serves as Uganada’s Foreign Minister under the anti-gay leadership of President Museveni, who recently signed into law severe punishments for homosexuality.
  • Laura Jane Grace, lead singer for the metal band Against Me!, has been the recent target of Trans Exclusionary Radical Feminists (view this site to learn about RadFems). The Twitter back-and-forth can be seen here. We couldn’t read the Twitter comments over the air for obvious reasons (if you take a look). The host stream (Pagan-Musings Podcast Channel) for the podcast version of Lavender Hill has had an ongoing conversation about certain elements of the RadFem movement, specifically the Dianic Wicca founder Z. Budapest and her banning of transgender women from official rituals and gatherings (pt. 1, pt. 2, pt. 3).
  • MS. Magazine has an informative op-ed piece on their blog on TransFeminism – worth the read!
  • One of the most vocal opponents of Texas’s “bathroom bill”, that would allow trans people to use the bathroom of their self-identified gender, has been shown to be a sexual predator himself. Pastor Baker, who has worked as a city chaplain, has expressed his belief that allow transwomen to use the women’s bathroom would allow a potential predator into the same bathroom as a six year old girl. Baker was suspended and later fired in the past for sexually harassing female employees.
  • In Maryland the “bathroom bill” was passed and signed into law by the governor. But State Delegate Neil Parrot (R) started a referendum to reverse that law. For the sake of all Marylanders, that referendum failed.
  • A transgender man in New York is suing the NYC Department of Parks and Recreation for discrimination. The man is still in transition and was denied use of the more private locker rooms reserved for handicapped people and families. Staff at a public pool reportedly told him to use the women’s locker room.
  • One of the suspects in the recent Atlanta beating of a transgender woman on their mass transit system claims that “transgender women provoke” such attacks. Much of the incident was caught on video by witnesses, the video and the witnesses could not clarify how the altercation started.
  • Perhaps the first transgender murder victim for 2014 in the United States was identified in Baltimore earlier this month. Kandy Hall was found earlier on 3 June in a field in Northeast Baltimore. TransGroit also blogs about the murder.
  • As of Friday 6 June 2014 all 31 states that currently ban same-sex marriages have lawsuits filed in either state or federal courts challenging those states’ bans. North Dakota was the last of the 31 to join in the battle on this level.
  • GOProud, the LGBT Republican group, is “re-branding”, or is that “dis-banning”?
  • Robert Garcia is the first three times around in Long Beach, CA. The first Latino mayor, the youngest, and the first openly gay mayor.
  • Shooting victim from the 2013 San Francisco Pride event is suing the SF Pride Committee for $10mil, citing a lack of security made it possible for the shooter to enter the event site with a gun.

Upcoming Pride Events in the Lincoln & Omaha Area

  • Heartland Pride is right around the corner. This the Omaha Metro area’s annual LBTQIA (etc) Pride event and is hosted every year in Omaha and Council Bluffs. Visit their website to learn more and see the calendar of events. The main events will be on Saturday 28 June in Council Bluffs and Stinson Park in Omaha.
  • Star City Pride is about a month away. Star City Pride is the Pride event in Lincoln, NE. Hosted in part by Panic Bar, the main event is a street party with vendors, information booths, and live entertainment outside the Panic, this year on Saturday 12 July.
  • The 4th annual Prairie Pride Film Festival will be 24-26 July at the Mary Riepma Ross Theatre  in Lincoln, NE.

Lavender Hill #128

128 episodes into the Lavender Hill series and we are going strong. With the recent additional of an extra half hour, Corwin and Phil get to bring you more news, views, interviews, and music from the LGBTQA+ community.

This we the hosts covered several topics ranging from marriage equality issues in the United States and elsewhere, the blood industry and the ban on gay men donating blood, plasma and other blood products, Russia’s continued negative stance towards the LGBTQA+ population and their pledge to enforce their anti-gay laws during the 2014 Olympics in Sochi, and some political wrangling from the Conservative end of the spectrum.

Links

  • Late in July the Associated Press published an article that indicates that Nebraska lawmakers are looking to reevaluate the state’s “defense of marriage” law. The topic will hopefully come up for debate in the fall session of the legislature.
  • Marriage equality seems to be gaining momentum in Pennsylvania.
  • Pentagon confirms spousal benefits for same-sex marriages.
  • Claiming that the rights of athletes would be respected during the 2014 Olympics in Sochi, Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko urged gay rights activists to “calm down”. Even with his assurances of respecting rights, he insists that all athletes, citizens and visitors alike, will be expected to obey established Russian.
  • A Southern California man is diagnosed with “chronic homosexual behavior” by his physician.
  • Campbell, California Mayor Evan Low refused the honor of donating blood by the Red Cross because he is openly gay.
  • Fox contributor Sandy Rios sticks her foot in it again by insisting that gays are incapable of healthy long term relationships, especially gay men.
  • Call Me Kuchu is showing at the Mary Riepma Ross Media Arts Center in Lincoln, NE from Friday the 16th of August through Thursday the 22nd.
    • In Uganda, a new bill threatens to make homosexuality punishable by death. With unprecedented access, the filmmakers follow David Kato – Uganda’s first openly gay man – and his fellow activists as they work against the clock to defeat the legislation while combating vicious persecution in their daily lives. But no one, not even the filmmakers, are prepared for the brutal murder that shakes their movement to its core and sends shock waves around the world. CALL ME KUCHU depicts the last year in the life of a courageous, quick-witted and, steadfast man whose wisdom and achievements were not fully recognized until after his death, and whose memory has inspired a new generation of human rights advocates. 

Music

Queen Radio GaGa Greatest Hits II
Bette Midler I’m Beautiful Bathhouse Betty
Klaus Nomi You Don’t Own Me Klaus Nomi
Pheromone Pholk Listen to Your Heart Music you love…but you don’t know why

Additional links….