Friday, April 24, 2015

Hotelier Mati Weiderpass: My Meeting With Ted Cruz Was Good For LGBT Rights

"I am happy to see such passion and energy in support of gay rights. We just need to channel that passion and energy to those who would deny us those rights. The dinner with Ted Cruz happened only because IT WAS NOT A FUNDRAISER. It was about security for Israel, but it also gave me a rare opportunity to address the gay issues for which Ted Cruz has championed against. THREE FACTS WILL MAKE IT MORE DIFFICULT FOR TED CRUZ TO BE THE CHAMPION AGAINST GAY RIGHTS: 1) he had a private dinner (not a fund raiser) at a gay couples home, 2) he is in several pictures at that gay household, and 3) he stated he would love his daughter the same if she were gay. Those facts are difficult to reconcile with his stance on gay issues -- Ted's far right anti-gay supporters are screaming now. We need to be persistent with our message and it will slowly seep thru even to those most vehemently against gay rights.

"Ken Mehlman was the Chair of the Republican National Committee whose platform included several anti-gay positions. Later in life Ken was instrumental in the passage of Gay Marriage in NY State. People's views can be changed over time. I worked 6 years for the repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell, which required many unpleasant conversations with people who opposed Gays in the Military. And it worked! THE GAY MOVEMENT NEEDS YOUR HELP. Tell those people that are against us or just neutral, that gay people have families, friends, some worship in church and we don't want to be demonized. Light up social media with calls for the SUPREME COURT TO RULE IN FAVOR OF GAY MARRIAGE! ‪#‎SUPREMESFORMARRIAGE‬ - Manhattan hotelier Mati Weiderpass, posting to the Facebook boycott page. (Tipped by JMG reader BD)

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Former GOP Sen. Jim DeMint: Please Attend NOM's Marriage Hate March

Talk about last minute.

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Tammy Bruce Belittles Trans Children

Via Raw Story:
Fox News contributor Tammy Bruce argued this week that a school lesson about tolerance had been wrong because being transgender made as much sense to children as thinking they were a “cocker spaniel.” During a “Trouble With Schools” segment on Wednesday’s edition of Fox & Friends, host Elisabeth Hasselbeck suggested that officials at Mitchell Primary School in Maine read children a story about a transgender girl “as a plan or an indoctrination on the part of the school to get to kids first.” “This is about conditioning, and not just of the children, but of the parents as well,” Bruce agreed. “The implication here is that if you are left to your own devices as a parent, something will go wrong, that they have to intervene. That of course, has got to be rejected.” “You know, look, at a point when I was a child, I thought I was a cocker spaniel,” she quipped. “And there’s a point when we have these fantasies where we think we’re Superman, where we can fly, where we’re the cat. This is childhood. And this is why this is particularly troubling.”
As you can see, Tammy Bruce is ever so pissed that people actually dare to disagree with her. Zack Ford wrote much more about this incident at Think Progress.

RELATED: Tammy Bruce regularly speaks at virulently anti-LGBT events such as CPAC where she happily shares the stage with hate group leaders who advocate for the criminalization of homosexuality.

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OREGON: Hearing Officer Suggests $135K Fine For Anti-Gay Bakery Couple

Via Oregon Live:
The lesbian couple turned away by a Gresham bakery that refused to make them a wedding cake for religious reasons should receive $135,000 in damages for their emotional suffering, a state hearings officer says. Rachel Bowman-Cryer should collect $75,000 and her wife, Laurel Bowman-Cryer, $60,000 from the owners of Sweet Cakes by Melissa, an administrative law judge for the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries said in a proposed order released Friday, April 24. Bureau prosecutors sought $75,000 for each woman -- $150,000 total -- during a hearing on damages in March. The amounts recommended by law judge Alan McCullough, coming after four days of testimony, are not final. State Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian has the final authority to raise, lower or leave the proposed damages as is.
Tony Perkins is going apeshit:
An Oregon judge made clear in no uncertain terms to the Kleins and all Oregonians that the state has the right to demand that citizens engage in activities that violate their beliefs and if they refuse, they will lose their ability to make a living. In a free country, this is a ruling that cannot and must not stand. In the State of Oregon's view, the Kleins need to be 'rehabilitated' and 'reeducated' - terms actually used by the Oregon Attorney General - regarding their religious views on the nature of marriage. Needless to say, government re-education regimes are more reminiscent of fascism than democracy. A government able to bankrupt people for standing by their deepest beliefs is a government of unbridled power and a threat to everyone's freedom. Our prayer and hope is that these fines will be overturned by a judge who remains committed to constitutional freedoms and that individual liberty will triumph over intrusive over reaching government. The heavy hand of the state must not be used to punish and fine people for merely seeking to live according to their beliefs.
The couple has already launched a GoFundMe page.

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CRUZ FALLOUT: Broadway Cares Cancels AIDS Fundraiser At Ian Reisner's Hotel

From the executive director of Broadway Cares:
It is with regret that we have decided to cancel this year’s edition of the Broadway Bares Solo Strips fundraiser, which was scheduled for May 10 at the NYC club 42West. We cannot in good conscience hold an event at a venue whose owners have alienated our community, as reflected in an April 23 New York Times story and an April 24 follow-up post. We do business with and accept fundraising support from a variety of people across a wide spectrum of political and religious affiliations. The rich diversity of our community makes what we do together so special. It is a rare instance where the actions of a donor negatively impacts us as an organization and potentially jeopardizes our relationship with others whose support is integral to our success. But when it does occur, in a way that’s blatantly against all we stand and work for, we can’t pretend it doesn’t come with consequences. Silence is not a neutral position. It is complicit. This is not about partisan politics or punishment. This is about doing what’s right to ultimately ensure that our commitment to the men, women and children we serve cannot be questioned.
Fallout has been equally swift across Manhattan's clubland. Links to the boycott of Reisner's properties have been posted by top New York City club promoters John Blair and Mark Nelson, both of whom have worked with Reisner's clubs in the past. Facebook pages for Reisner's various businesses have been deluged with negative comments and vows to stay away. Also interesting are boycott pledges by summer-long residents of Fire Island Pines, who would have few other options as Reisner recently paid $10M for 80% of the resort town's commercial district. At this writing the boycott's Facebook group has grown to over 4100 members in just one day.

NOTE: Broadway Bares 25 will take place as scheduled at the Hammerstein Ballroom on June 24th. Get tickets here.

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Crackpot E.W. Jackson: Christians Are Ready To Die Over Same-Sex Marriage

"People have to remember Christians have died for our faith. We have died for our commitment for  the word of God. So the idea that those of us who believe are just going to roll over due to social pressure when we know that we follow a long line of heroes of the faith who have surrendered everything? We're certainly not going to back up just because people are upset with us. I think that we are sowing the seeds of our internal destruction. We believe that we answer to a higher authority. Truth forever on the scaffold, wrong forever on the throne. We will give our lives standing for the truth." - E.W. Jackson, ready to die over same-sex marriage.

PREVIOUSLY ON JMG:  E.W. Jackson says Christianity is the world's only real religion. E.W. Jackson says using his own words against him violates the Constitution. E.W. Jackson launches petition to legalize anti-gay discrimination nationwide. E.W. Jackson says Satan supports the separation of church and state. E.W. Jackson joins international coalition to criminalize homosexuality. E.W. Jackson joins hate group rally against Virginia marriage. E.W. Jackson says women who commit sins give birth to deformed babies. E.W. Jackson says God invented the Tea Party because Obama got elected.

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AG Eric Holder Lauds LGBT Triumphs In Goodbye Speech To Justice Department

Attorney General Eric Holder has left the building. But not before a press conference in which he righteously spiked the ball about the LGBT triumphs seen during his tenure. Moments ago the Department Of Justice joined in on Twitter by posting the above photo. Earlier today the DOJ posted the below recap of Holder's life and six years with the Obama administration. When the history books of this time in our movement are written, Eric Holder should have his own chapter. Maybe two.

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Wells Fargo Ad Stars Adoptive Gay Moms Learning Sign Language For Daughter

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"I'm Not Gay No More" Viral Video Dude Involved In Yogurt-Throwing Fracas

So this happened in Missouri:
A heated confrontation at a University City FroYo Frozen Yogurt shop ended with a cashier throwing frozen yogurt on a customer, according to police. Security video from the business shows a customer throwing money at a cashier. Seconds later you can see the cashier throw a bowl of frozen yogurt at the customer. The customer, Andrew Caldwell, said he was trying to get a discount on his yogurt, adding that the cashier called him a homosexual slur. "The bowl hit me all in my face, my nose," Caldwell said.

Caldwell gained some recognition in 2014, when an internet video of him at a church went viral. In the video, Caldwell announced, "I don't like men no more." Caldwell said ever since then, people have attacked him when out in public. He believes the cashier recognized him from the video. However, the cashier tells a different story. Fox 2's Anthony Kiekow asked Stephanie Diaz if she called Caldwell a homosexual slur Thursday. "That is not true," she said. "I am gay." Diaz also said that she had never seen Caldwell's viral video and that he started the confrontation. "He showed me his driver's license, and he was like, 'I need a (expletive) discount, you (expletive)," Diaz said.
The cashier has been charged with third-degree assault. (Tipped by JMG reader Scott)

RELATED: The COGIC preacher in the infamous clip will be one of the speakers tomorrow at NOM's hate march.

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Stunning PFLAG Canada Ad Remembers All The Weddings That Never Happened

Holy crap, this is gorgeous. Get the tissues, seriously.

(Via Good As You)

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Tony Perkins: Impeach Supreme Court Justices If They Rule For Gay Marriage

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Celebs For Marriage Equality

Susan Sarandon, Tony Hawk, Anthony Boudain, Kristin Chenoweth, John Ridley, and many more.

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Tweet Of The Day - Ben Carson

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New Details About NYC's Nordstrom Tower

New York Yimby has some new details about midtown's coming Nordstrom Tower, which is now under construction.
Permits for the tower have continued to shift slightly in recent months, but the documents YIMBY previously obtained indicated the building would have a roof height of 1,479 feet and a pinnacle height of 1,775 feet, which would make it the tallest residential tower on the planet. Final figures are likely to be within a hair of both numbers. Compared to the world’s tallest buildings, 217 West 57th Street would rank fifth if it were built today, standing almost 1,000 feet shorter than the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, and by 2018 it may not crack the global top ten. But its roof will be substantially taller than both One World Trade Center and Willis Tower. The most recent figures put 217 West 57th’s Spire one foot below the WTC’s 1,776-foot pinnacle.

Despite this, the slight elevation of Midtown compared to the Financial District (a net gain of approximately 70 feet) will mean that 217 West 57th Street’s spire will actually rise approximately 1,850 feet above sea level. While the WTC may retain the title of NYC’s tallest by spire height, 217 West 57th’s relative prominence to most New Yorkers will actually be somewhat greater. 432 Park Avenue passed the WTC’s roof last year, and One Vanderbilt will likely do so in about 2017. 432 Park is currently regarded as somewhat tall relative to its surrounds, but the appearance of new buildings like 217 West 57th and 111 West 57th will quickly even out the disparities in the skyline, as will the rezoning of Midtown East, which may result in Manhattan’s tallest towers yet.
The tower is due to be completed in 2018 and will host a massive Nordstrom store, a hotel, and several hundred condos. The penthouse is expected to feature the highest outdoor space in the city. (The rendering above shows the 70th floor observation deck at Rockefeller Center.) Within five years or so the Empire State may not be among the ten tallest buildings in town. The Nordstrom Tower is #27 in the "coming soon" rendering below. Embiggen for a huge version.

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TENNESSEE: Straight Swingers Sex Club Seeks To Incorporate As Church

Via the Associated Press:
A Nashville swingers club has undergone a conversion — it says it's now a church — in order to win city approval so it can open next to a Christian school. The story began last fall, when a fixture in downtown Nashville called The Social Club sold its building and purchased a new one in a run-down office park several miles to the east. The new building is geographically isolated at the end of a dead-end street, but it is near the back of Goodpasture Christian School, a large private school serving pre-school through high school children.

It might have been years before school officials and parents learned what was going on inside The Social Club — its website says it is "a private club for the enjoyment of both men and women ... to engage in any sexual activity" — if someone had not sent anonymous letters to the school president and the local councilwoman. Both say the person who tipped them off claimed to be a concerned club member, although they don't know that for sure.

Parents and religious leaders were called on to pack the Metro Nashville Council chambers to support a zoning change to prevent the club from opening. That's when the club, which had spent $750,000 on the building and begun renovations, suddenly transformed into a church. The United Fellowship Center's plans are nearly identical to those of The Social Club but with some different labels. The dance floor has become the sanctuary. Two rooms labeled "dungeon" are now "choir" and "handbells." Forty-nine small, private rooms remain, but most of them have become prayer rooms.
RELATED: Porno Pete regularly screams about the continuing existence of gay bathhouses in the United States, which currently number fewer than 30. Yet he says nothing about straight sex clubs, which number in the thousands. According to this site, 563 straight swingers clubs are presently in operation across the nation. And then there are the estimated 4000 strip clubs, many of which offer private "champagne rooms" for patrons to have alone-time with the dancers.

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Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal: I'll Accept Any Same-Sex Marriage Ruling By SCOTUS

Shocker. Very anti-gay GOP Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal says that however SCOTUS rules on same-sex marriage, he will accept the result.
“Federal constitutional issues trump state constitutional issues, " Deal told "A Closer Look" host Denis O'Hayer. "So we will abide by whatever the Supreme Court rules as an interpretation of the United States Constitution.” On Wednesday, State Attorney General Sam Olens said he'll follow the U.S. Supreme Court's order. Deal also spoke about the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, SB 129, which was stalled in the House Judiciary Committee in the final days of the state Legislature this year. "What I want is to protect individuals' right of religious freedom without causing the kind of uproar that we saw occur in Indiana and in Arkansas," Deal said.
Deal added that he doesn't believe same-sex marriage "rises to the level of attracting a national, constitutional amendment to overrule the Supreme Court or the federal courts."  One less pitchfork for Scott Lively to buy, huh? (Tipped by JMG reader TJ)

RELATED: In a 2010 campaign ad, Deal attacked his GOP primary opponent with a radio ad that said this: "The last straw. For some, it’s Karen Handel’s support for taxpayer-funded gay partner benefits. For others, the last straw is Karen Handel’s vote to give our tax dollars to Youth Pride, a group that promotes homosexuality among teenagers as young as 13. But for all, the lies Karen Handel tells about Nathan Deal — a veteran, former prosecutor and judge, to hide what she’s done — are the last straw." In the early 90s Deal served two terms in the US House as a Democrat, but he switched parties in 1995 when Republicans took control, saying that he was a huge fan of newly-elected Speaker Newt Gingrich's infamous Contract With America.

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Str8 Prom D8

Via Huffington Post:
As a student council member at his high school, Anthony Martinez is often tasked with planning school dances. But the 17-year-old, who is gay, says that he “never [gets] asked.” Until now, that is. Martinez, who attends Desert Oasis High School in Las Vegas, Nevada, shared on Twitter this week that he was asked to prom by someone entirely unexpected. It was his best friend, Jacob Lescenski -- who is straight. Lescenski told New Now Next that he had decided to surprise Martinez with the promposal after seeing his friend tweet about wanting a date for the event. “I decided on going to prom alone because my original date idea didn’t work out so well,” he said. “Then one night I saw Anthony, who is my best friend, tweeting about wanting a date. So, I came up with the poster idea, asked my friend Mia to make it and asked him that next day … It was a giant surprise to everyone, especially Anthony!” A thrilled Martinez expressed his gratitude to his BFF on social media.
Hella cute.

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Comcast-TWC Merger Is Dead

CNN Money reports:
Comcast is planning to walk away from its $45 billion merger with Time Warner Cable after pursuing it for more than a year. The decision comes amid intense, possibly insurmountable scrutiny of the deal by government regulators. It is an extraordinary turnabout for a cable giant not accustomed to losing. The deal would have reshaped American media and given Comcast unique control over the market for broadband Internet. But on the bright side for Comcast, the deal has no "breakup fee" -- industry parlance for a financial penalty for giving up on the merger. The collapse of the merger, first reported by Bloomberg News on Thursday afternoon, came one day after a series of meetings between the cable companies and government officials. The officials shared a long list of reservations about the proposed combination of two cable and broadband companies and indicated they may take action to block it.
The formal announcement will come today.

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Hubble Telescope Celebrates 25 Years

From NASA:
The brilliant tapestry of young stars flaring to life resemble a glittering fireworks display in the 25th anniversary NASA Hubble Space Telescope image, released to commemorate a quarter century of exploring the solar system and beyond since its launch on April 24, 1990. “Hubble has completely transformed our view of the universe, revealing the true beauty and richness of the cosmos” said John Grunsfeld, astronaut and associate administrator of NASA’s Science Mission Directorate. “This vista of starry fireworks and glowing gas is a fitting image for our celebration of 25 years of amazing Hubble science.” The sparkling centerpiece of Hubble’s anniversary fireworks is a giant cluster of about 3,000 stars called Westerlund 2, named for Swedish astronomer Bengt Westerlund who discovered the grouping in the 1960s. The cluster resides in a raucous stellar breeding ground known as Gum 29, located 20,000 light-years away from Earth in the constellation Carina.

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Ted Cruz Files Two Anti-Gay Marriage Bills

Via Bloomberg:
Days before the U.S. Supreme Court hears arguments on same-sex marriage, Senator Ted Cruz has filed two bills to protect states that bar gay couples from marrying. Cruz's legislation would establish a constitutional amendment shielding states that define marriage as between one woman and one man from legal action, according to bill language obtained by Bloomberg News. A second bill would bar federal courts from further weighing in on the marriage issue until such an amendment is adopted. While Cruz's legislation would face solid opposition in the Senate, it is an attempt to force his competitors to keep the issue alive even if the court rules in favor of same-sex marriage. Last year, Cruz and Utah Senator Mike Lee filed similar legislation to protect more than 30 states that currently define marriage as a union between one man and one woman, but those bills died when the session in a Democratic-controlled congress ended.
The bills are here and here.

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ARKANSAS: AG Approves Referendum To Repeal Law Banning LGBT Rights

Via the Associated Press:
An effort to repeal a new Arkansas law preventing local governments from extending anti-discrimination protections to gays and lesbians moved closer toward appearing on next year’s ballot Thursday after the state’s attorney general gave initial approval to the referendum. Attorney General Leslie Rutledge certified the proposed ballot measure, which would have voters decide whether to keep the law prohibiting cities and counties from banning discrimination not covered in state law. Arkansas’s civil rights law doesn’t include sexual orientation or gender identity. Rutledge’s certification means supporters of the measure can begin gathering the roughly 51,000 signatures from registered voters needed to put the proposal on the 2016 ballot. The signatures must be submitted by late July, when the law is set to take effect.
(Tipped by JMG reader Lulu)

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TRAILER: Black Mass

TIME recaps:
Johnny Depp is famous for taking on roles that require some serious transformations, but decades into his career, it’s still a shock to see him as Boston crime boss Whitey Bulger in the trailer for Black Mass. The actor is nearly unrecognizable in the somewhat unconventional trailer, which mostly consists of one derailed dinner party scene to convey just how creepy and threatening Bulger, a convicted murder currently in prison, could be. Black Mass, which also stars Kevin Bacon and Benedict Cumberbatch, hits theaters Sept. 18.

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Today's Crazy Lie From Mike Huckabee

"If the courts rule that people have a civil right not only to be a homosexual but a civil right to have a homosexual marriage, then a homosexual couple coming to a pastor who believes in biblical marriage who says ‘I can’t perform that wedding’ will now be breaking the law. It’s not just saying, ‘I’m sorry you have a preference.’ No, you will be breaking the law subject to civil for sure and possible criminal penalties for violating the law. If you do practice biblical convictions and you carry them out and you do what you’ve been led by the spirit of God to do, your behavior will be criminal. God help us all." - Mike Huckabee, speaking on a conference call with pastors that had been organized by the Family Research Council.

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Timelapse: A Walker In New York City

I thought this would be about zombies, but no: "A behind-the-scenes look at how the French artist JR created a large-scale pasting in the triangle below the Flatiron Building for the Walking New York issue of The New York Times Magazine." Pasting?

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Thursday, April 23, 2015

Hotelier Ian Reisner Reacts To Cruz Flap

"For my entire adult life, I have been an ardent supporter and activist for gay rights and LGBT organizations worldwide. I was given the opportunity to have a candid conversation with Senator Ted Cruz on where he stood on issues including the state of Israel and national security, which are the only places where we share common ground. It was just three months ago that I hosted a 'Ready for Hillary' event for a record turnout of 900 people at The OUT Hotel. Senator Ted Cruz and I disagree strongly on the issue of gay marriage, but having an open dialogue with those who have differing political opinions is a part of what this country was founded on. My tireless support of the gay community and its causes worldwide hasn't changed and will not change." - New York City hotelier Ian Reisner, posting tonight on his Facebook page.

NOTE: There are conflicting reports at whether the event with Cruz was a fundraiser.  CNN is saying that it was, but the New York Times is saying this "Mr. Cruz was on a fund-raising tour of New York City, although the dinner was not a fund-raiser." I've added this notation to previous posts on this topic.

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Ted Cruz: I Took Money From Those Gays But I'm Still Against Same-Sex Marriage UPDATE: Maybe It Wasn't A Fundraiser?

Earlier today the New York Times reported that Sen. Ted Cruz held a fundraiser this week in the Manhattan penthouse of multimillionaire gay hoteliers Ian Reisner and Mati Weiderpass (above). As you can imagine, that report has caused a furor in Teabagistan and tonight Cruz had to rush out a reassuring statement.
Ted Cruz was forced to reiterate his stance against same-sex marriage in a Thursday night statement after a news report of comments he made at a fundraising event on Monday in New York City cast some doubt. Cruz, who hopes to court evangelical voters to support his presidential bid, stood by what he reportedly told a small group, hosted by "two prominent gay hoteliers," according to The New York Times. The Times reported his remarks seemed to signal a softening of his beliefs on same-sex marriage, a charge Cruz dismissed.

"It speaks volumes that The New York Times considers it newsworthy that a Republican who believes marriage is between a man and a woman would meet with people who hold a different view," Cruz said in a statement. Earlier on Thursday, the Times -- a frequent rhetorical target of Cruz on the stump -- published an account of an event on Monday evening in which Cruz said he would treat his young daughters the same if one of them told him she was gay. Cruz agreed with that reporting, but ridiculed the suggestion in the article that he was somehow shaping his views to suit the audience's. The Texas senator said he told the crowd that he opposed same-sex marriage. The Times reported that he did not mention that belief, only noting that he believes marriage is a state issue
News about the fundraiser has also ignited the gay blogosphere and a Facebook group calling for a boycott of the hoteliers' properties already has 1000 members.

UPDATE: There are conflicting reports at whether the event with Cruz was a fundraiser.  CNN is saying that it was, but the New York Times is saying this "Mr. Cruz was on a fund-raising tour of New York City, although the dinner was not a fund-raiser." Reisner's statement in the post above this one does not say.

UPDATE II: I should have identified Mati Weiderpass in the above photo posted to the Facebook boycott page.

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Via the Associated Press:
The leader of the North Carolina House says his chamber won't debate a "religious freedom" bill this year that supporters promoted as protecting religious liberties but others criticized as legalizing discrimination against gays and lesbians. House Speaker Tim Moore told reporters Thursday the proposal or anything similar to it won't move during this session, which is expected to end sometime this summer. Moore says the bill sponsors have good intentions but the issue has been politically mischaracterized based on reaction to a similar Indiana law.
From Equality North Carolina:
"Today, true North Carolina values of fairness and justice prevailed with the announcement that the state's so-called 'Religious Freedom Restoration Act" (or RFRA) would no longer be considered in the General Assembly's 2015-2016 session, said Equality NC Executive Director Chris Sgro. "This decision is a testament to the actions of thousands of North Carolinians--from business leaders to faith communities to a majority of North Carolina voters--who made their voices heard over the past several months through emails, letters, calls and in-person meetings and who pushed back on the notion that religion should ever be used to discriminate against North Carolinians."

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NOW A Warning?

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One Million Moms Vs Schick

Just in via email:
This current Schick Hydro Silk TrimStyle ad is extremely inappropriate and vile, plus it is aired early in the evening when children are likely watching. It is so suggestive it's disgraceful. The commercial shows three women in tiny bikinis standing behind small bushes strategically placed in front of their crotches. Two women then proceed to delicately trim these bushes with scissors. The third woman uses her new Schick razor on the bush. She trims it into the shape of a heart and the other two women stand amazed. The advertisement gives the impression they are trimming and shaping their pubic area because of how the trees are placed. You do not have to imagine much to see the implication.

And to top it all, this commercial is airing on Nickelodeon and ABC Family Channel! 1MM does not approve of either of these networks, but it just shows that Schick has no boundaries as to when and where they will air this garbage. Schick, owned by Energizer Holdings, Inc., needs to know it is not alright to air obscene commercials with highly offensive content, especially when children are likely watching. This is unacceptable! TAKE ACTION: Please contact Schick (Energizer) through our website and ask them to pull their current ad immediately! Also, encourage the company to be more responsible in future marketing campaigns. If the company would like our business, it must no longer air vulgar ads.

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NEJM To SCOTUS: Say Yes To Marriage

The New England Journal of Medicine is the nation's oldest continuously published peer-reviewed medical journal. Posted today:
Eleven years ago, Massachusetts became the first state in the country to give same-sex marriages full legal recognition. Today, same-sex marriage is legal, through legislative or judicial action or by popular vote, in more than 35 states and the District of Columbia. It is recognized by the federal government. And polls consistently show that it is supported by a clear majority of Americans. However, in Ohio, Kentucky, Michigan, and Tennessee, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled in favor of laws and constitutional amendments that define marriage as a union between a man and a woman only, denying recognition of same-sex marriage. Given the conflicting lower-court rulings, the Supreme Court has taken the issue under consideration. The Court will hear oral arguments on April 28 and is expected to hand down its ruling by the end of the current session, in June. We believe that the Court should resolve this conflict in favor of the full recognition of same-sex marriage throughout the United States.
Read the rest. (Tipped by JMG reader TJ)

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Linda Harvey: Satan Is Deceiving SCOTUS

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Franklin Graham Has The Iceman Sadz

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Happy Openly Secular Day

(Tipped by JMG reader Doug)

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Hold Your Applause For Gov. Doug Ducey

While Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey definitely did the right thing yesterday by revoking his state's ban on adoption by same-sex couples, he's also keynoting this weekend's gala for the vile Center For Arizona Policy, which relentlessly fights every advance in LGBT rights. Sharing podium time with Ducey will be martyred anti-gay florist Cottonelle Stutzman. Just take a look at the many ways the Center For Arizona Policy seeks to impose Christianist values on their state. (Tipped by JMG reader Erik)

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Joe Biden & Blondie - Naked Men

From Brooklyn's Gregory Brothers. You'll like this. I'd really love to see Blondie turn this into a proper single.

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Sen. Ted Cruz Meets Gay NYC Hoteliers

Via the New York Times:
Senator Ted Cruz, the Republican presidential candidate, has positioned himself as a strong opponent to same-sex marriage, urging pastors nationwide to preach in support of marriage as an institution between a man and a woman, which he said was “ordained by God.” But on Wednesday night, at a reception for him at the Manhattan apartment of two prominent gay hoteliers, the Texas senator struck quite a different tone. During the gathering, according to two attendees, Mr. Cruz said he would have no problem if one of his daughters was gay. He did not mention his opposition to same-sex marriage, saying only that marriage is an issue that should be left to the states. The dinner and “fireside chat” for about a dozen people with Mr. Cruz and his wife, Heidi, was at the Central Park South penthouse of Mati Weiderpass and Ian Reisner, longtime business partners who were once a couple and who have been pioneers in the gay hospitality industry. “Ted Cruz said, ‘If one of my daughters was gay, I would love them just as much,’” recalled Mr. Reisner, a same-sex marriage proponent who described himself as simply an attendee at Mr. Weiderpass’s event.
Reisner is the owner the Out NYC hotel and nightclub complex near Times Square and earlier this year he bought the majority of the commercial district in Fire Island Pines. In October 2014 the 25 year-old manager of a Hell's Kitchen gay bar was found dead of a reported drug overdose in a bathtub at Reisner's $25M penthouse, the site of last night's meeting with Ted Cruz. According to the above-linked report, Cruz bragged at the meeting about being friends with homocon billionaire Peter Thiel.

NOTE: There are conflicting reports at whether the event with Cruz was a fundraiser.  CNN is saying that it was, but the New York Times is saying this "Mr. Cruz was on a fund-raising tour of New York City, although the dinner was not a fund-raiser."

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Senate Finally Confirms Loretta Lynch

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Maggie Goes Gaga For Bobby Jindal

"Kudos, kudos, kudos to Jindal. Who else will step up to the plate? It is only the question of whether the Judeo-Christian ethic in America will be tolerated or whether government will be used to punish and strip the livelihoods of people who cannot in conscience serve a particular marriage. Nationally, the pledge would be to fight for the Marriage and Religious Freedom Act. Who, besides me, will follow where Jindal leads? Please share this post with as many people as you can." Former NOM chairbigot Maggie Gallagher, praising today's NYT op-ed by Bobby Jindal.

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ATLANTA: High School Students Face Charges In Attack On Gay Classmate

(Tipped by JMG reader DM)

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ARIZONA: GOP Gov. Doug Ducey Revokes Ban On Adoption By Gay Couples

From the Arizona Daily Star:
Just a week after Gov. Doug Ducey vigorously advocated for more adoptions regardless of the parents sexual preference, he found he had to overturn a state policy blocking gay adoptions. Ducey issued an order late Wednesday voiding a Department of Child Safety policy of refusing to certify legally married gay couples for adoption or permitting them to jointly be foster parents. A spokesman for the governor said he just learned about the policy earlier Wednesday. In a sharply worded statement, the governor said his administration is "unambiguously and unapologetically pro-adoption,'' and the policy, instituted without his knowledge, is unacceptable. The governor's move came two months after former agency head Charles Flanagan quietly reversed what had been the policy of allowing such adoptions since last October, when a federal judge struck down Arizona's constitutional amendment defining marriage as solely between one man and one woman.
Flanagan was fired by Ducey earlier this year.

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Bobby Jindal: Save Your Breath, I'll Always Oppose Civil Rights For LGBT Americans

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal today published an op-ed for the New York Times in which he vows to continue his battle against same-sex marriage and for discriminatory anti-LGBT legislation. An excerpt:
As the fight for religious liberty moves to Louisiana, I have a clear message for any corporation that contemplates bullying our state: Save your breath. In 2010, Louisiana adopted a Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which prohibits government from unduly burdening a person’s exercise of religion. However, given the changing positions of politicians, judges and the public in favor of same-sex marriage, along with the potential for discrimination against Christian individuals and businesses that comes with these shifts, I plan in this legislative session to fight for passage of the Marriage and Conscience Act.

The legislation would prohibit the state from denying a person, company or nonprofit group a license, accreditation, employment or contract — or taking other “adverse action” — based on the person or entity’s religious views on the institution of marriage. Some corporations have already contacted me and asked me to oppose this law. I am certain that other companies, under pressure from radical liberals, will do the same. They are free to voice their opinions, but they will not deter me.

I hold the view that has been the consensus in our country for over two centuries: that marriage is between one man and one woman. Polls indicate that the American consensus is changing — but like many other believers, I will not change my faith-driven view on this matter, even if it becomes a minority opinion. A pluralistic and diverse society like ours can exist only if we all tolerate people who disagree with us. That’s why religious freedom laws matter — and why it is critical for conservatives and business leaders to unite in this debate.

If we, as conservatives, are to succeed in advancing the cause of freedom and free enterprise, the business community must stand shoulder to shoulder with those fighting for religious liberty. The left-wing ideologues who oppose religious freedom are the same ones who seek to tax and regulate businesses out of existence.
Hit the link for the full drivel.

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Martha Wash Tops Billboard's Dance Chart

Gay favorite Martha Wash first topped Billboard's dance chart way back in 1978 as Sylvester's backing vocalist and since then she's landed a dozen dance chart #1 singles as one-half of the Weather Girls, as a solo artist, and as the uncredited vocalist for Black Box and C+C Music Factory. This week she returns to the pinnacle position in a collaboration with prolific two-time Grammy-nominated gay DJ/producer Tony Moran. The duo also hit #1 in 2007 with Keep Your Body Working. With a title like Free People, expect to hear this a LOT at post-SCOTUS pride celebrations.

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TRAILER: Folsom Forever

Clip recap:
In 1984, a scrappy little neighborhood in San Francisco – home to many low-income tenants and the heart of the gay male leather scene – faced destruction from the bulldozers of redevelopment and the AIDS crisis. The Folsom Street Fair was started to call attention to gentrification and raise money for AIDS charities. Folsom Forever tells the story of how this small street fair grew into the biggest outdoor kink and fetish event in the world, and managed to do a lot of good along the way. Coming to DVD and VOD June 9, 2015.
Possibly not work-friendly.

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Scott Lively: Christians Will Stop Gay Marriage With Pitchforks And Torches

"The natural family is the ecosystem of humanity! It must be preserved at all costs. How? By a populist uprising! The elites need to see the angry mob – liberals and conservatives together – surging through the streets, pitchforks and torches held aloft, ready to tear down Frankenstein’s castle with their bare hands if need be. For Christians it’s Jesus and the moneychangers time! Making a whip of cords like He did with His own hands, and letting these arrogant puppet-masters know we mean to use it (metaphorically speaking). The bottom line is this: The elitists always believe they’re smarter, wiser and better than you. They play the game of democracy to keep the peace, but they always follow their own agenda to the fullest extent the people will allow by their complacency. The only way to deter the elites is with the threat of the mob. They need to see the pitchforks and torches to know they’ve gone too far and need to back down." - Scott Lively, writing for World Net Daily.

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Trans Star Laverne Cox Named To People's World's Most Beautiful Women List

Breitbart readers are going nuts. See the list.

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TEASER: Bruce Jenner Speaks Out

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Freep This AFA Poll

Right here. (Tipped by JMG readers Daddy Ray and Bryan)

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NEW YORK CITY: Pam Geller Wins "Killing Jews" Transit Ads Battle With MTA

Via the New York Times:
A federal judge in Manhattan on Tuesday ordered the Metropolitan Transportation Authority to display an ad from a pro-Israel group on buses after the agency declined to run it last year. The group, the American Freedom Defense Initiative, sued the authority in October, saying it had infringed on the group’s First Amendment rights by rejecting the ad. The authority had argued that the ad could be seen as a call to violence against Jews. The ad shows a man with a scarf across his face next to the words, “Killing Jews is Worship that draws us close to Allah,” attributed to “Hamas MTV.” Below that, it reads: “That’s his Jihad. What’s yours?” The judge, John G. Koeltl, of United States District Court, ruled that the ad qualified as protected speech and granted a preliminary injunction ordering the transportation authority to run the ad. He said the order would not take effect for 30 days so the agency could consider whether it would appeal the decision.
In 2012 Geller first prevailed over the MTA and was allowed to post subway platform messages that called Muslims "savages." Geller has won similar court cases against transit agencies in San Francisco, Chicago, and Philadelphia.

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NEW YORK: State Assembly Committee Advances "Ex-Gay" Torture Ban

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ABC Poll: New High For Marriage Support

Via the Washington Post:
A record-high 6 in 10 Americans support same-sex marriage and a similar share say individual states should not be allowed to define marriage as only between a man and a woman, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll. The national debate on same-sex marriage moves to center stage next week, when the Supreme Court hears oral arguments on whether state restrictions on same-sex marriage are unconstitutional. The Post-ABC poll finds 61 percent of Americans support allowing gays to marry and 35 percent are opposed. Support is up only slightly from last year but is a reversal from public sentiment a decade ago, when opponents outnumbered supporters 58 percent to 39 percent. In the short and long run, support for same-sex marriage has grown significantly across demographic and political groups. Among those under age 30, support has grown since 2005 from 57 percent to 78 percent. Among those 65 and over, it has increased from 18 percent to 46 percent. Support has also risen by double digits across partisan groups, though Democrats and independents have shifted the most.

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Senate Narrowly Rejects Bill To Fund Assistance To Homeless LGBT Youth

From Cyndi Lauper's True Colors Fund:
Today, the United States Senate failed to pass the Runaway and Homeless Youth and Trafficking Prevention Act (S.A. 290), which would reauthorize the Runaway and Homeless Youth Act (RHYA). The vote was 56 "YES" to 43 "NO" - short of the 60 "YES" votes required to pass. The Act includes a non-discrimination clause that would help ensure lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) youth experiencing homelessness not only have access to critical services, but that those services are safe, welcoming, and tailored to meet their unique needs. Research continues to show that while LGBT youth make up just seven percent of the general youth population, they comprise up to 40 percent of the 1.6 million youth that are homeless in America each year. 

"Thank you to the 56 senators who showed true leadership today by voting in favor of protecting all of our nation’s 1.6 million homeless youth,” said Cyndi Lauper, Co-Founder of the True Colors Fund. “Unfortunately, 43 senators put the objections of conservative religious groups ahead of the lives of our nation’s most vulnerable youth. Every day, homeless gay and transgender youth experience rejection and discrimination from their families, communities, and the providers who are supposed to help them. Today, 43 senators added their names to the group of people who think that it is acceptable to throw away the up to 40% of homeless youth who identify as LGBT."
Chris Geidner reports on the voting:
For the third time this year, a majority of the Republican-led Senate voted for a pro-LGBT measure — with 56 senators, including 10 Republicans, voting for an amendment that including LGBT protections for runaway youth. Wednesday’s vote to amend the Runaway and Homeless Youth and Trafficking Prevention Act into the Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act of 2015 failed, however, as it would have required 60 votes to pass. The amendment included a nondiscrimination clause that would have prohibited runaway and homeless relief programs created by the act from discriminating against LGBT children based on their sexual orientation and gender identity.

Sens. Kelly Ayotte, Shelley Moore Capito, Susan Collins, Dean Heller, Mark Kirk, Lisa Murkowski, Rand Paul, Rob Portman, Dan Sullivan, and Pat Toomey joined all the Democrats in voting for the measure, which was brought to a vote by Sen. Pat Leahy. Among the declared presidential candidates, Paul was the only one to vote for the measure. Sen. Marco Rubio opposed the amendment, and Sen. Ted Cruz did not vote on the amendment or the underlying bill, which passed 99-0. This was not the first such vote, suggesting that, while there is still not yet a filibuster-proof majority supporting LGBT rights in the Senate, there is a simple majority who appears willing to back a broad range of LGBT rights measures. In many cases, however, the Republican leadership’s opposition to LGBT rights measures would keep them from coming to the floor.

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Tweetstorm: #LoveMustWin

In the final days before the SCOTUS hearing, Freedom To Marry has launched the #LoveMustWin hashtag across social media, earning the tweeted support of politicians like Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and many others. Above on the left is Broadway's Andrew Keenan-Bolger, who notes on Instagram that he remains unable to marry in his home state of Michigan.

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Openly Jake: Gaytriotism Across America

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Cordileone: I Won't Be At The Hate March

Over the weekend I noted that San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone's name was not on NOM's list of speakers for Saturday's hate march. Yesterday he confirmed his non-attendance with the San Francisco Chronicle:
San Francisco’s Roman Catholic archbishop has decided not to attend this year’s annual march against same-sex marriage in Washington, D.C., avoiding a repeat of an appearance that proved controversial back home last year. Other U.S. bishops will instead represent the Catholic Church at Saturday’s rally, the San Francisco Archdiocese said in a brief statement issued Wednesday evening explaining why Cordileone would not be going. In an earlier statement to The Chronicle confirming his non-attendance, the archdiocese said Cordileone’s “highest priority” was his intention to speak with teachers and families in local Catholic schools, where there has been an outcry over the archbishop’s demand that staffers sign a morality clause declaring sex outside marriage and homosexual relations to be “gravely evil.”

“While he remains involved in national issues, Archbishop Cordileone will not be attending the march,” the archdiocese said in its statement Wednesday. “His highest priority in the coming days is a productive dialogue with Catholic-school teachers and families here in San Francisco, whose concerns are very important to him.” A leader in the archdiocese teachers movement to oppose the proposed morality code said he had heard nothing of a renewed dialogue with the archbishop. “We have nothing to our knowledge planned,” said Sal Curcio, a teacher at Sacred Heart Catholic High School. “I double-checked my e-mail. Nothing there. I’ve asked a few people, and so far nobody has heard of any meeting planned.”
The archdiocese has also issued a press release.

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TRAILER: A Sinner In Mecca

Plot recap:
For a gay filmmaker, filming in Saudi Arabia presents two serious challenges: filming is forbidden in the country and homosexuality is punishable by death. For filmmaker Parvez Sharma, however, these were risks he had to assume as he embarked on his Hajj pilgrimage, a journey considered the greatest accomplishment and aspiration within Islam, his religion. He brings back the story of the religion like it has never been told before, having endured the biggest Jihad there is: the struggle with the self.
An interview with the director is here. The film's world premiere will be on Wednesday at Toronto's Hot Docs Film Festival.

(Tipped by JMG reader Bill)

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Rep. Steve King Intros Bill To Strip Federal Courts Of Powers Over Marriage

Rep. Steve King (R-IA) has introduced a bill that would strip federals courts of the power to rule on marriage. His bill is titled the Restrain the Judges on Marriage Act of 2015. Via The Hill:
“For too long, federal courts have overstepped their constitutionally limited duty to interpret the Constitution.” King said in a news release. “Rather, federal courts have perverted the Constitution to make law and create constitutional rights to things such as privacy, birth control, and abortion. These Unenumerated, so-called constitutionally-protected rights were not envisioned by our Founding Fathers.” King’s bill strips way Article III of the Constitution, which gives federal courts the jurisdiction to hear or decide any question pertaining to the interpretation of, or the validity under the Constitution of, any type of marriage. The bill also prohibits federal funds from being used for any litigation in, or enforcement of any order or judgment by, any federal court.
Last year King declared that in 2000 years, no gay person has ever gone to heaven. The next day he said that leftists had "fabricated" the remark and that he stands by having said it. Yup.

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Wednesday, April 22, 2015

LIVE VIDEO: Texas House Committee Debates Anti-Gay Marriage Bill

Watch it live.

Texas HB 3567:
A religious organization, an organization supervised or controlled by or in connection with a religious organization, an individual employed by a religious organization while acting in the scope of that employment, or a clergy or minister may not be required to solemnize any marriage, provide services, accommodations, facilities, goods, or privileges for a purpose related to the solemnization, formation, or celebration of any marriage, or treat any marriage as valid for any purpose if the action would cause the organization or individual to violate a sincerely held religious belief.

A refusal to provide services, accommodations, facilities, goods, or privileges under Section 2.601 is not the basis for a civil or criminal cause of action or any other action by this state or a political subdivision of this state to penalize or withhold benefits or privileges, including tax exemptions or governmental contracts, grants, or licenses, from any protected organization or individual.

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