Friday News Wrap

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Friday News Wrap

The biggest gay news of the week has to be the oral arguments for and against Prop 8 in front of the California Supreme Court yesterday. San Francisco was boiling before, during and after. Some analysts say the Justices seem to be leaning toward upholding the ban. If you didn't watch the proceedings, our gal about town Rachel Maddow did a great breakdown.

Unemployment rates rose to 8.1% as the U.S. lost 651,000 jobs in February. Newly confirmed Labor Secretary Hilda Solis vowed that the Obama Administration will do everything they can to "break the destructive cycle.” Vermont legislators are fast-tracking a bill that would grant full marriage rights to same-sex couples. Minnesota has also introduced a bill that would make marriage gender neutral, opening up the process to gays. Meanwhile, the LDS nation has decided to quash civil unions in Illinois where legislation is currently under review.


President Obama, for his part, spoke at a health forum about the moral and fiscal imperative of truly reforming the health care industry.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton continued her diplomatic travels this week with a visit to Europe and an extended hand to Russia, as the two nations move toward another round of nuclear reductions.

Accused ponzi scheme ring leader Bernie Madoff has waived his right to a formal grand jury, moving one step closer to a plea deal.

An Illinois sheriff is suing Craigslist for its online erotic ads on the grounds that they constitute the promotion of prostitution.

In global goings on, the International Criminal Court has issued an arrest warrant for Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir which he is angrily rejecting. Also, the United Nations is warning that if Sudan follows through with their threat to expel aid agencies, that could also constitute a war crime because it would endanger more than a million people.

Zimbabwe Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai was injured in a car crash that also killed his wife.

And, as a reminder, Daylight Savings Time begins early Sunday morning, so spring on forward.

Comments [49]

Not2Taem's picture

Now that is seed of one sweet

Now that is seed of one sweet dream sequence! Hope it doesn't end with road rash.

Steph H's picture

Mystic - thanks to you, LB,

Mystic - thanks to you, LB, N2T and Xan for a really thought provoking set of comments.
I totally agree with what you say about the roots of the movement. I have a tendency to question civil disobediency but as my South African girlfriend reminds me on a not infrequent basis, it is wholly necessary in the face of absolute discrimination.
However, there also comes a point when more moderate measures are needed to really hammer the argument home.

On a lighter note, I went to San Francisco Pride in 2004 and the topless Dykes on Bikes were the highlight of my day! Smile

Xanadu's picture

That is the question isn't

That is the question isn't it? Is it ratings .. or stereotyping us - through the media?

For instance our main Wellington Newpaper has used the same photograph (of a guy being led, with a leather dog collar on) for years now, when writing about the Mardis Gras.

It was televised in OZ and shown live on pay per view ... I watched the news coverage (here in NZ) on SKY News - which alternates the news from NZ, OZ and Britain.

Not2Taem's picture

Got to agree on the float

Got to agree on the float perspective. In the Austin Parade, even the Kings and Things float was strictly G rated. It is all a little schizophrenic. Perhaps we should consult with Tara? Wink

Not2Taem's picture

May be a good point, there.

May be a good point, there. I've been to pride here, and aside from one car full of lads dressed as laddies, you could have been at a PTA picnic. Most of the haters around here go ballistic over 2 lesbians coming to school to see the winter holiday performance.

mysticsmb's picture

Xanadu, it's my understanding

Xanadu, it's my understanding that the Sydney Mardi Gras parade is usually televised in its (sort of) entirety--not just given news coverage--and that the more extreme elements are edited out for viewing. Is that no longer the case? Or maybe the news (is it a Murdoch channel?) now shows the more shocking bits for ratings?

Xanadu's picture

It's funny you brought up the

It's funny you brought up the issue of 'Pride' parades.

Sydney (Australia) had it's Gay Mardis-Gras parade at the weekend.

I was watching the Australian news coverage of it (feeling rather un-easy). I tried to view it from the perspective of a straight person sitting on the couch at home ... and I squirmed.

For a start the news woman didn't say gay or lesbian once, but said 'homosexual' repeatedly throughout the coverage ... but it was the way she said it: Think of the way Rick Warren said "Sasha and Malia" in that speech ... "Homo-SEX-Sual". I was cringing ...

They only showed the most exteme participants in the parade, carefully avoiding any shots of the LGBT spectators who were obviously too 'normal' looking to appear on the news.

It occured to me ... Imagine what a powerful statement it would be, if the LGBT community decided to 'take back' these parades - make them more 'organic' (for want of a better word) ... more basic PRIDE about being our everyday selves?

The parades seem to have been hijacked by 'fetish' and other sex crowds (essentially straight people) that often have nothing to do with most of our lives (in my opinion).

With Prop 8 and our issues being so visible, this should have been our year to take some kind of a stand (via the parades).

Basically I think we shoot ourselves in the foot, when we're about to reach the finish line ...

mysticsmb's picture

Wow, LongBeach, you open up a

Wow, LongBeach, you open up a huge Pandora's box here. On the one hand, it's not like I haven't felt the way you have when watching some of the outre behavior at a Pride parade--most notably my first, which sent me scuttling back to my closet because most of what was represented was so NOT me.

On the other hand, the whole gay rights movement owes a huge debt to those on 'the fringe' who had the guts to step forward in the first place. Without them, the more conservative members of the community wouldn't have a tenth of the acceptance they now enjoy. So I very much have come to view Pride parades from a historical perspective--that it's not just about what's going on today in the gay community but also what the roots of the movement are. And make no mistake, the movement is rooted in civil disobedience and challenge to the status quo.

There's no denying, however, that the gay rights movement is now at a crossroads and that the community is anything but monolithic. While some are working tirelessly for gay marriage, many others have no use for it and prefer to remain on the fringe, to create their own institutions or have none at all. Many are even asking if we need pride parades now that marriage is on the table.

My sense from attending Pride parades in various cities is that there are different standards of decency at play--I'd be curious to know what, if any, rules the organizers of the parade in LA enforce and how much input they get from the LGBT community and law enforcement. The question then arises: who is this parade for? Is it a party we throw for ourselves? A showcase to let the straight world know we exist? I understand your concern that images from some aspects of the parade can be used against us, that we're on the one hand trying to 'normalize' ourselves at the same time we're putting on a veritable 'freak show.' I think maybe we have to accept and live with the fact that some of our goals are at cross-purposes. Life just isn't that tidy sometimes. Most likely in the future we will probably see a splintering of gay events that reflects our differing needs. It's already happened to a certain extent with the advent of dyke marches and various leather events.

The last couple of parades I've attended in Boston and New York were shocking for the number of CHURCHES participating. On and on, for blocks and blocks they went, and while I welcome the tolerance and acceptance this demonstrates, religious organizations don't exactly make for the most exciting parade from a pageantry standpoint. But the minute I hear a distant salsa beat coming from down the road my ears prick up. If I were making the parade rules, floats, sequins and Latin music (hope you're reading this Minnie) would be mandatory! This may seem frivolous, but I do think we should keep in mind that the essence of parade IS spectacle and it's ultimately rather foolish for people to base their views of more serious matters such as the civil rights of fellow citizens solely on what they see at a parade.

chivermetmbrs's picture

Well said.

Well said.

LongBeachDogLover's picture

Tae, I disagree with the

Tae, I disagree with the concept that... "the only way to disprove that threat is to deny the nature of our true selves."

It's my contention that the 'negative' perceptions of the LGBTQ community are, at times, reinforced by us. At times, we are our own worst enemy. Example: The last "Pride" parade in Los Angeles went far beyond anything that I had ever seen. Sure, it's always loaded with 'extreme' examples of our community.....but, this time it was mostly 'extreme'. Even beyond my comfort level for a public event. Let me try to explain what I mean.....

You and I can giggle, enjoy and understand the chains and leather, studded dog collars and leashes, we know it's somewhat of a 'in your face' statement, and find it quite benign. But, to the 'average' American (voter) watching this behavior marching through a "Pride" parade...well, it simply serves to re-enforce every fear, and pre-conceived, unreasonable stereotype that those who are homophobic may already have of us.

Is this public display, "the nature of our true selves" ?

Whether we agree with it, or not....These sorts of public displays are perceived as anti-social, deviant behavior. And, guess what.......when it comes time to vote on marriage equality 5 months later, what vision is in the minds of the 'average voter' in Los Angles? Not the positive things that have transpired in the gay community throughout the year, but the naked guys being led, like dogs, through a "Pride" parade a few months prior. They remember the freak pictures that they saw on the front pages of the newspaper, online, and on the local new casts. That's what they'll be thinking about in the voting booth.

Maybe a small bit of discretion is in order when the stakes are so high.

"Deny the nature of our true selves".......... Tae, there are 'conservative' members of the LGBTQ community. We, yes I am conservative, are never presented as an example. I rarely feel represented by the community that I am supposed to be a part of.... Obviously, "the nature of our true selves" means different things, to different people.

I would suppose that at some point we may need to take a step back, be a bit more pragmatic, and look at the entire picture. The fear of change is something that, obviously, the majority of voters have an issue with. So, it's simply my thought that if we were to re-evaluate what the term "pride" truly means.....just possibly, those fears wouldn't be as prevalent. Of course, I've only pointed out one example. Unfortunately, to those who like to present us in a negative light, examples like this...... do in fact, serve to justify their homophobia.

We should always be our true selves Tae. I understand, and respect that. But, I do see both sides....


Not2Taem's picture

When the perception of threat

When the perception of threat is based solely on our sexual identity, the only way to disprove that threat is to deny the nature of our true selves. And that is simply an unacceptable expectation.

mysticsmb's picture

I agree. I don't know what

I agree. I don't know what the raw numbers are on Mormon voters in CA, but their ability to INFLUENCE votes by spending millions on underwriting fear-mongering ads makes them accountable for the outcome of the vote. And it is much easier to SCARE people with lies and half-truths in advertising than to make an affirmative case, or 'prove oneself' as you so aptly point out.

I do not condone Mormon-bashing in any form, but I will certainly call out those who participated in the Prop 8 campaign (and now in Illinois) on their lies, their misplaced priorities in spending a shameful sum of money on obstructing people's rights rather than making the world a better place (hey, ever heard of soup-kitchens??), and their hypocrisy in being a 'suspect minority' (as LGBT's were referred to during Thursday's hearings) who in turn choose to oppress another minority. Don't they get it? Their having rights is contingent on ALL of us having rights.

Xanadu's picture

I just don't know how we show

I just don't know how we show that? ... How does one show, one is not a threat? I find the issue of us having to 'prove ourselves' very frustrating and confusing!

The majority of us are decent people, who are just getting on with living our lives, jobs, friendships.

In my everyday life - if someone says something ignorant or ill-informed around me, I correct them and try to educate them (whilst attempting to be calm, unflustered, not cry, or show I'm downright pissed off by what just came out of their mouth!)

My only interaction is with hetero's (offline!)

What more can each of us do, than that?

I thought the Prop 8 street protests were effective, simply by showing our numbers and putting our everyday face's to that perceived threat of 'the GAY'.

At this point I just feel like we are owed something big because we can't prove ourselves more than we have ...

Tex's picture

FOR LB BELOW I was raised


I was raised Methodist - yep, one of God's frozen chosen..... my family smells good too, even if they still live in the South....and are still Methodists!

and I'm gonna refrain from asking if your family still wears that underwear Smile

and and I'm gonna apologize before I even say this, but when I think about you and that underwear, I think about Raquel and that underwear... Wink

Twitter Time @kdhales

mysticsmb's picture

Thanks for the link Lucia. I

Thanks for the link Lucia. I guess Mormons don't mind us having rights as long as they are the arbiters of which ones we can have. What a bunch of lying hypocrites! Nothing pisses me off more than groups that have been persecuted who turn around and oppress others--Israel comes to mind as well.

LongBeachDogLover's picture

Tex.... you know me well

Tex.... you know me well enough to know that I find humor in a myriad of subjects. I am just fully exhausted over all of this Mormon bashing....

P.S. I love my family, and they smell awesome. Laughing out loud

LongBeachDogLover's picture

Okay. The Mormon vote did not

Okay. The Mormon vote did not pass Prop.8..... let's give it a rest.

Why haven't we been talking about our failures as a community to educate, inform, and interact with the heterosexual community. To show ourselves in a positive light. To show... by example, that we are in fact, not a threat to families or marriage stability.

It's time to stop placing blame, and be pro-active.

Now, we need to focus on President Obama's promise to protect, and enhance our rights on the Federal level.... equivalent tax breaks for couples, health insurance rights, adoption rights, etc. Not this state by state bullshit.

President Obama stated that the rights of those of us in the LGBTQ community should be equal to, and no different than, our heterosexual counterparts. He believes in "civil unions", but not "marriage".......... Let's call him on it. We can't wait. We shouldn't wait.

Tex's picture

My apologies - I understand

My apologies - I understand it more than you know - because you were raised a Mormon I will leave all future statements about them to you. And you, LB, of all people, not seeing the humor in this?!?!

Twitter Time @kdhales

LongBeachDogLover's picture

"From everything I read the

"From everything I read the only thing (besides these people are extremely weird) that sticks in my mind is that I bet most Mormons smell!"

Tex, I was raised in a Mormon family. I understand that you obviously don't understand the faith, however that statement is insulting, and ill-informed.

lucia_2008's picture

Try this

LongBeachDogLover's picture

CMW...... One question: I'm


One question:

I'm just curious, do you really believe that there are women who "truly enjoy" selling their body to the highest bidder so they can pay their rent, and feed their children?

For a woman, prostitution is not about 'enjoyment'. It's an emotionally, and physically disconnected act for her. It has to be.

Steph H's picture

You too, honey!

You too, honey!

Tex's picture site site for photos, or at least the easiest to use site for photos....have a great weekend, sweets!

Twitter Time @kdhales

Fastgurrrl's picture


Texie, haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa! Smile


Fastgurrrl's picture

Toodlin! =) LOVE IT

Toodlin! =)


Steph H's picture

Tex - WHERE do you find these

Tex - WHERE do you find these pictures?!?!

Steph H's picture

I have never seen anything

I have never seen anything like those "bloomers" in my entire llife. Vp surely does expand my horizons....

toodlin's picture

I love the way Rachel Maddow

I love the way Rachel Maddow actually focuses on substance.

You know, I recently found this book buried in my yard, I think some superhuman prophet hearing the words of g-d wrote it, and MY book says equality, peace and justice is the way to go. Also, my book says to wear CK knickers. Also, my book says my god hangs out with the spaghetti monster, and it's all good. I am filing for tax exempt status.

Jennifer's picture

ooh Ginsburg my personal

ooh Ginsburg my personal idol. i rarely pray but she has the prayers that i have to give out this week.

But what i really wanna know is who the fuck the kid with the untucked shirt is next to Obama? I mean sersssly kid, you're about a foot from the president try at LEAST tucking in your shirt...

and on the Maddow...GOD I LOVE HER!

Robin Rigby's picture

Super simplistic answer?

Super simplistic answer? Because this country was founded by puritans. We are a nation trapped in a pubescent state of sexual development.

CA_Medicine_Woman's picture

Because: 1) A woman isn't


1) A woman isn't supposed to actually enjoy sex.

2) A woman isn't supposed to make money in any way a man doesn't approve of.

Curious thing: Women arrested for prostitution end up in jail or prison, with a criminal record that haunts them for the rest of their lives. A man gets a token fine and a slap on the wrist for soliciting the prostitute to begin with. Both are equal partners in the same "crime," but one is treated very differently from the other.

Don't get me wrong, I have seriously mixed feelings about prostitution, which I deal with on a person by person basis (some are forced into it, some actually want to do it and truly enjoy it). But I also recognize the hypocrisy on this issue as well, especially here in the US (with the exception of certain parts of Nevada).

CA_Medicine_Woman's picture

The question is, who didn't

The question is, who didn't know? Laughing out loud

CA_Medicine_Woman's picture

This is why I refuse to

This is why I refuse to negotiate with bigots. It's like trying to teach a pig to sing, a complete waste of time that only annoys the pig! (no offense to our pink mammal friends, lol)

CA_Medicine_Woman's picture

Cali, eh? I'll be back there

Cali, eh? I'll be back there on the 22nd (or there abouts, depending on weather and freight). Wink

CA_Medicine_Woman's picture

There's no one tougher than a

There's no one tougher than a Jewish grandmother, lol!

Way to go Justice Ginsburg!

Not2Taem's picture

Don't ya just love a guy

Don't ya just love a guy who's comfortable enough with his feminine side to sport bloomers! Laughing out loud

mysticsmb's picture

From USA Today: One month

From USA Today:

One month after her surgery for pancreatic cancer, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said Thursday she expects to be on the Supreme Court for several more years. In an interview, she also vividly recalled why, on her second day back on the bench, she attended President Obama's televised speech to a joint session of Congress.
"First, I wanted people to see that the Supreme Court isn't all male," the lone female justice said of the evening event Feb. 24. "I also wanted them to see I was alive and well, contrary to that senator who said I'd be dead within nine months."

Ginsburg was referring to a prediction by Sen. Jim Bunning, R-Ky., three days before Obama's speech, in which he said she would likely be dead from the pancreatic cancer within nine months.

Tex's picture


Being totally fair to the sect, I posted the URL from an LDS site - have mercy, that was an interesting google!

From everything I read the only thing (besides these people are extremely weird) that sticks in my mind is that I bet most Mormons smell!

Changing my underwear,


Twitter Time @kdhales

Fastgurrrl's picture

Why the hell is prostitution

Why the hell is prostitution illegal here anyway? For a country founded on the notion of FREEDOM and getting out from underneath the thumb of "the man," we seem really fucking uptight about a lot of stuff that we deem illegal.


Fastgurrrl's picture


Bwaaaaahaaaaaaaaaaahaaaaaaaaaaaaa! Wink


Fastgurrrl's picture

Oooooooooooooo, sexy. Not!

Oooooooooooooo, sexy. Not! Wink


Kelly McCartney's picture

It's one of those LDS secrets

It's one of those LDS secrets that if you knew and weren't a Mormon, your face would melt.

Won't you be my neighbor? @theKELword

Julia Watson's picture

I always hear about these

I always hear about these "magic underpants." Why exactly are they purported to be magical?

Tex's picture

Twitter Time @kdhales

Tex's picture

Let me know when you are

Let me know when you are heading westward...

Twitter Time @kdhales

Kelly McCartney's picture

You never did spring westward

You never did spring westward and now I'm getting ready to head back to Cali. What happened to our date in Santa Fe? I met you halfway!

Won't you be my neighbor? @theKELword

Kelly McCartney's picture

Funny. We nominated Blackwell

Funny. We nominated Blackwell as our representative to the Fred Phelps clan, too.

The Mormons need to mind their own damn business. We aren't trying to ban their magic underpants.

Won't you be my neighbor? @theKELword

Tex's picture

Who knew about Craigslist?

Who knew about Craigslist? Thank goodness the ads at the top and side of this page are for the University of Phoenix.....Velvetpark - The Purveyor of Intellect......none of us would dare pay attention to erotic ads

Springing forward,


Twitter Time @kdhales

mysticsmb's picture

I distinctly remember some

I distinctly remember some Mormon leader saying that they got involved in the Prop 8 fight because it was a re-definition of the word marriage (I'm going to hunt down that quote), that they thought gays should still have equal 'rights.' So WTF is their problem with civil unions?

Someone needs to call them on their lies. Paging Erin Blackwell...