Wednesday, June 30, 2010

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"The Boondocks" Bash Tyler Perry



The creator of "The Boondocks" was criticized for being homophobic as a result of a spoof on Tyler Perry. I saw the episode, and I can't say I would classify it as homophobic.  Here's what one source says...

For a while now The Boondocks' recent swipe at Tyler Perry was funny at times, but homophobic and hard to defend. I've had a love-hate relationship with Aaron McGruder's The Boondocks. I loved The Boondocks as a newspaper comic strip and raised hell trying to get my local "fish wrap" to carry it. I've found The Boondocks cartoon on the Cartoon Network's Adult Swim lineup to be occasionally funny and other times totally laugh-free. One recent episode, during which thug wannabee Riley goes on a vandalism rampage with a psychotic classmate who arms himself with a gun, was more depressing than amusing. In its third (and last) season, The Boondocks has been divided between the misses and the hits.

But when it does hit, The Boondocks draws blood. Last week's episode, where McGruder ripped into Tyler Perry for his crappy plays and movies, was one such example. It had me laughing -- but for all the wrong reasons. It was a crude and obvious shot at Perry, characterizing him as a down-low, predatory homosexual and Jesus-peddling hack. For now you can still catch all 22 minutes of the frivolity online, but the link might go dead at any moment.

More details from the L.A. Times:

In "Pause," an episode written by McGruder and executive producer Rodney Barnes that aired Sunday, a thinly disguised version of Perry named Winston Jerome is positioned as a closeted, cross-dressing cult leader whose love of the Christian faith is a mask for his true sexuality. Though the character bears little physical or vocal resemblance to Perry, the reference is obvious to those familiar with Perry's work. The dancing Ma Duke is a clear parody of Madea.

The Jerome character wears a pink sweater, is surrounded by bare-chested muscular men and constantly proclaims his love for Jesus even as he attempts to seduce Granddad (John Witherspoon), the guardian of the two boys, Huey and Riley Freeman, at the center of the series. The fame-hungry Granddad is trying out for a part in Jerome's new play, Ma Duke Finds Herself a Man.

Near the end of the episode, Jerome bluntly asks Granddad for sex; the old man responds, "Do you mean to tell me that this whole cross-dressing Christian cult crap is just so you can sleep with men?" "Uh, pretty much, yeah," says Jerome. The episode marks one of the sharpest public criticisms of Perry. Huey Freeman calls the script for Ma Duke "terrible." The Perry brand has also been blasted by some critics and entertainers, such as Spike Lee, who say Perry's projects perpetuate negative stereotypes and present a narrow view of African American life. McGruder and executives for Turner and Adult Swim declined to comment on the episode. Representatives for Perry did not return phone calls.

There are news reports that Perry was so incensed by the episode, he fired his entire writing staff. Did McGruder have some inside information about how things work on Team Perry? Then again, considering how lousy Perry's TBS comedy House of Payne and his movies are, maybe he should have fired his writers a long time ago.

Source: The Root.com & L.A. Times

Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart

Ellen DeGeneres Bounced Back...


Ellen may have taken a lashing when she first "came out", but she's more influential, and richer than before.  More importantly, I bet she has peace of mind too....

Talk show host, American Idol judge and all-around celebrity personality, Ellen DeGeneres lands between Steven Spielberg and David Letterman at number 23 on Forbes’ Celebrity 100 list.  “The Celebrity 100 is a measure of power based on money and fame,” Forbes explains on its website.

Forbes uses entertainment-related earnings and media visibility as measures of fame for its Celebrity 100 list. Media visibility includes exposure in print, television, radio, the Internet, specifically Facebook and Twitter.  DeGeneres, who is the third most followed user on Twitter with a total of 4,794,873 followers (behind Britney Spears and Ashton Kutcher), just launched her own record label eleveneleven, became a judge on American Idol and continues to host the Ellen Degeneres Show.


Source: 365gay.com

Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Angelina Jolie Admits...

In an interview with Vanity Fair, Angelina Jolie said her four-year-old daughter dresses “like a little dude."  Shiloh, we feel, has Montenegro style. It’s how people dress there. She likes tracksuits, she likes (regular) suits. She likes to dress like a boy. She wants to be a boy. So we had to cut her hair. She likes to wear boys’ everything. She thinks she’s one of the brothers,” said Jolie.

Jolie, and partner Brad Pitt have previously showed their support of the LGBT community when in a 2006 interview with Esquire magazine, Pitt said, “Angie and I will consider tying the knot when everyone else in the country who wants to be married is legally able.”


Source: 365gay.com

Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart

Joan Rivers is a Piece of Work...

Joan Rivers told The Advocate that gay male celebrities shouldn’t come out, for fear of breaking 16-year-old girls’ hearts.  “If you’re going to be a romantic idol and try to get every teenage girl to love you, then you’d be an ass to come out and say you’re gay. That’s why Ricky Martin was so smart — he did what he did, he made his millions, and then he said, ‘Guess what, everybody? I’m gay, I’m having this life, and here are my children.’ It didn’t matter anymore because he didn’t have to bring in 16-year-old girls,” she said.

“If you’re looking at someone who’s your idol, thinking that maybe one day they’ll come ring your doorbell, you don’t want to hear, ‘There’s no chance in hell, honey, but still buy a ticket to the movie.’”

Source: 365gay.com

Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart

Monday, June 28, 2010

Behind the Smile...

A friend of mine is a writer.  A great writer.  Before we became friends I read a story he wrote called "The Giggles" that left an indelible mark in my memory of my early years in Atlanta.  I remember where I was exactly when I read it.  I was home with a few friends.  I was lying on my couch.  They were watching television.  I picked up a magazine and flipped to Scott's story.  After reading it I shared it with my friends.  Several years later Scott and I became friends and that was one of the first things I told him; how "The Giggles" changed my life.  Before I share "The Giggles" I'd like to share a story he wrote....

Behind the Smile…



I am Black


I am a man


I am Gay


I am HIV positive


I love sports


I love fashion


I love music


I love traveling


I love movies


I have been all over the world


I practice yoga regularly. It calms me, strengthens me, heals my mind, body and soul.


In the fall of 2007, I attempted suicide


Behind the smile is someone who is lost and this blog is dedicated to the journey back to myself. It’s a commentary on my life, politics, fashion, music, movies & culture.

Read more from Scott here: http://scottallenbogan.wordpress.com/

Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart

Difficult Conversations...

It's the ones we have with those we love; those who matter most in our lives. It's the conversations that will either strengthen, damage or break bonds; but they are necessary.  Our pride can convince us at times we don't "need" to have a difficult conversation with someone we love because we feel "they should already know" or "I shouldn't have to say x,y,z".

Fear often instigates the problem too.  Making it hard for some to broach certain subjects while others simply cringe at the thought of tough conversations because it requires confrontation, and on some levels it requires vulnerability.

Relationships (friendships included) are never easy because you're consistently tested in areas the relationship is weakest: communication, honesty, loyalty, even consideration for one another.  Consideration is probably the second most difficulty in relationships behind communication because it employs some level of sacrifice on our part for the one we're involved with. To consider someone is to think of them or do for them without them asking.  It calls for us to be proactive for those we love.  Our actions are for their benefit.

With respect to romantic relationships the tests, generally, surface during the dating or courting phase which many of us skip because we have a tendency to bypass that stage and go straight to the relationship in haste.  The relationship "glitches" that we experience dwell in the "getting to know you" phase; there's no way to avoid them.  That's when the "snags" reveal themselves.  If we pass by that stage, we miss those learning scenarios and opportunities.  They are the sneak preview of what we'll need to work on (with that person) if/when things graduate to a relationship.  There's no point in moving forward to a relationship if you can't resolve things while dating.  When we afford ourselves the opportunity to court we get the privilege of a practice test (so to speak) with that person.

Don't get distracted by the kinks.  Work through them when it's worth it....

Follow me on Twitter@therealcstewart

My Blog Talk Radio Interview...

I wanted to share this radio (phone) interview that I was featured on.  There were a few technical problems in the beginning, but hold out because it gets interesting.  My interview begins at 21:05...

Listen to internet radio with ZeeCee on Blog Talk Radio

Two Dynamic Personalities Speaking With ZeeCee
http://www.blogtalkradio.com/zeecee
Air Date June 27, 2010

Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Promises....


I was excited to learn a ribbon had been created for those of us who are HIV negative. I think it's time to celebrate it, and bring attention because more often than not conversations around HIV rarely lend themselves to that side of the story.  It's time we encourage and remind each other to be proactive in remaining HIV negative.  Friends to the blog, Urban Socialites magazine sent this information along with the "Promise" ribbon....

UrbanSocialites would like to introduce the Virtual Promise Ribbon. The "promise" positions the responsibilities on you and us in remaining STD free.

Neither HIV nor any other STDs will take precedence over practicing safe sex. While thinking “Positively NEGATIVE Positively POSITIVE” we will adhere to our promise pledge by obtaining a relationship with our health provider as well as a commitment to a new STD testing when we fail our pledge. As the term virus is defined, an infectious agent that replicates and is transmitted from one source to another.

Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart.

4th of July Weekend Events...


Friend to the blog, examiner.com columnist David Augusta is assisting with July 4th weekend events listed on the flyer.  Be sure to take a look at his weekly column, http://www.examiner.com/atlanta
Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart

CDC Fails....

The CDC has dropped the ball...

WASHINGTON (June 27, 2010) As health departments, community organizations and AIDS advocates around the country observe National HIV Testing Day today, AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) criticized the Centers for Disease Control’s (CDC) for its failure to implement its own landmark 2006 change it its official HIV testing guidelines that included the recommendation for routine testing of all individuals ages 13-64 for HIV as they visit or encounter routine healthcare settings. Instead, health bureaucrats at the CDC and in the field rely on outdated, ineffectual behavioral interventions as the number of new HIV infections in the US—now, thought to be about 56,000 new cases each year—continues to grow.

 “Having a policy on routine HIV testing is absolutely worthless unless you implement it,” said Michael Weinstein, President of AIDS Healthcare Foundation, which conducts over 40,000 free HIV and STD tests annually throughout California, Florida and Washington, DC. “With rapid HIV testing technology today, the process have never been easier, yet the CDC still relies on useless behavioral interventions to try to address the growing US epidemic. The CDC and other government bodies do not put enough priority on testing when it comes to funding programs. They are not actively encouraging jurisdictions to implement routine testing, or streamlining the testing process.”  “The CDC pushes HIV National HIV testing Day, but it is not making routine testing happen a full four years after recommending it,” said Whitney Engeran-Cordova, Director of Public Health for AIDS Healthcare Foundation. “How many people have to become infected with HIV before the CDC will take a more assertive posture with states that will not fully implement its recommendations?  How much are we willing to spend on behavioral interventions that are expensive and not effective before we make the choice to prioritize testing and finding HIV positive individuals as a primary and secondary prevention method?”

Engeran-Cordova oversees AHF’s HIV testing program, whose ‘Testing America’ mobile HIV testing van wraps up an ambitious 6-month, 48 state free HIV testing tour in New York City this weekend. The AHF/Magic Johnson ‘Testing America’ tour, which kicked off in Los Angeles in January and has logged over 4,300 tests so far in more that 20,000 miles of travel—is part of a collaborative effort to raise local and national awareness about the importance—and ease—of HIV testing and to challenge attitudes about moving toward a streamlined model of HIV testing and counseling nationwide. This is AHF’s second HIV Testing Tour across the US after the successful completion of its inaugural 14 city AHF/Magic Johnson HIV Testing Caravan in mid-2009.At the time of the CDC’s landmark recommendation for changes in HIV testing back in 2006, a Medscape.com article (September 26, 2006, News Author: Laurie Barclay, MD; CME Author: Charles Vega, MD, FAAFP) reported:

“These recommendations for HIV testing are intended for all healthcare providers in both public and private settings, including hospital emergency departments, urgent care clinics, inpatient services, substance abuse treatment clinics, public health clinics, community clinics, correctional healthcare facilities, and primary care.”

The article also noted “The goals of these recommendations are to increase HIV screening of pregnant women and other patients in healthcare settings, to allow earlier detection of HIV infection, to identify and counsel persons with unrecognized HIV infection and refer them to clinical and prevention services, and to further reduce perinatal transmission of HIV in the United States. These revised guidelines update previous recommendations for HIV testing in healthcare settings and for screening of pregnant women.”

AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) is the largest global AIDS organization.  AHF currently provides medical care and/or services to more than 137,000 individuals in 23 countries worldwide in the US, Africa, Latin America/Caribbean, the Asia Pacific Region and Eastern Europe.

Source: www.aidshealth.org



Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart

Saturday, June 26, 2010

An Email from L.A.

It's Saturday morning and the only reason I'm awake at 9:00 a.m. is because "my guy" had a photo shoot to art direct, and as he was leaving my place he asked me to lock the door behind him.  I got up, locked the door and I grabbed my cell phone from the dresser before I crawled back in the bed to check emails, texts, Facebook, and Twitter messages that may have come through and this is the first thing I saw....


From: Beyonce World 
Date: Fri, 25 Jun 2010 19:54:02 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Im Amazed

Hello my name is Shannon from los angeles ca and i came across your blog today & i am absolutely amazed of all of the lost knowledge i learned today reading your blog.you are the example of what society needs to see from a gay black man. You have stimulated my mind and inspired me so much. And your play...WOW, this what the world needs to see. No one can interpret the lifestyle better than ourselves. I hope this play leaves a grand mark and i cant wait to see the finished product. If no one has ever told you I want to say thank you, for sharing your knowledge to people like me. You may not have the fame or success like tyler perry but sure captured the heart of a new fan. Dont stop until you reach the top!!!!

Signed,
A newfound fan

This is my reply:

I almost deleted your email without opening it because I thought it was spam because the "FROM:" field said "Beyonce World". My mouth was wide open as I read your email and I couldn't help but wonder how you learned about the blog. Before I knew it I was in tears sobbing because I struggle on many levels daily to get "A Day in the Life" the brand to the masses.

It's been eight years and counting since I sat down to write the stage play, and it's since developed into a script for cable (not yet developed) and the blog. I created the blog with hopes of reaching young gay people, perhaps, in small towns that need examples of progressive gay people to inspire, uplift, and encourage. Thank you, thank you, thank you for giving me reasonS today to continue searching for resources and making daily sacrifices for "A Day in the Life".

Craig Stewart

Proof yet again that God works through people...

Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart

Friday, June 25, 2010

A Night to Network...

Last night began on the rooftop of the Loews Hotel for Dining Out Magazine's Summer Issue Release Celebration at the Loews Hotel on the Terrace. Afterwards we convened in the lobby for a special performance by Ben Deignan who sang some originals as well as covers by Bobby Brown, Maroon 5.  In this photo (above), master tailor Matthew Weaver, hair enthusiasts Brandon Thompson and Monty.                                                                      

 
 Rameses Frederick, Founder of Urban Socialites magazine


 
(with 944 magazine managing editor, Isoul Harris)

My next stop of the night was the Hotel Palomar for Equally Wed, the nation’s premier online same-sex wedding magazine event. The couple (seen below) said the idea came as a result of planning their own nuptials, so, immediately after they married they created equallywed.com to assist other gay and lesbian couples who are tying the knot. Their site is full of resources as well as engagement stories. The signature drink for the event, Belvedere grapefruit spritzer...

 

 

(it was hot. See the sweat on my shirt)

 Photos from Equally Wed Event by: http://www.annaandspencer.com

 Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart


DC Woman Sues Church for Tithes Payed...

Before reading and listening to the story I imagined this woman to be bitter and hateful, but in reality she's employing doctrine she's been taught.  It's apparent in the video (below) she has been programmed to believe homosexuality is wrong.  She admits one of her friends is gay.  This church and the leaders of it should be applauded for taking a stand.  I believe other churches would take the same stance if they didn't fear losing members which translates to money...

DC resident, Yvonne Moore sued Covenant Baptist Church over its support of gay marriage, Soledad O'Brien reported.  Moore, a member of Covenant Baptist for 37 years, sued for her weekly tithes of nearly $250,000 after Pastors Dennis and Christine Wiley performed a gay commitment ceremony in 2007.  “I don’t believe in that, I’m a southern Baptist,” Moore told O’Brien. “The bible speaks against that.  You cannot take that in the church.”

Moore was not the only member displeased with the union. According to CNN, the historically black church lost half of its congregation following its active support of marriage equality.  The church’s pastors consider the struggle gay rights an extension of the black civil rights movement.
“I don’t think we as a people have a lock on civil rights,” Pastor Dennis Wiley said. 

Moore has since dropped her lawsuit, but has not returned to the congregation.




Source: 365 gay.com

Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Behind the Scene Video, "A Day in the Life"

Here are some behind the scene clips from the shoot for the "A Day in the Life" trailer.  Jasmine Bonet is featured in these clips, but we have 4 different scenes that we'll merge together.  The purpose of this trailer is two fold: to shop as a cable series and to procure sponsorship for a national tour of the stage play.  Stay tuned for the full length trailer...











Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Day 3, A Day in the Life Trailer Shoot

Yesterday was the third day of filming for the "A Day in the Life" trailer.  Chet Brewster of Davenstar shot all of Tyler Perry's stage plays, (King & Queens of Comedy), Keith Sweat's Platinum House and now "A Day in the Life".  Jasmine Bonet is "the face", "the body" and one of the stars of the stage play.  Here are a few snap shots from the Purple Door. 

Big thank you to Real Housewives of Atlanta star Dwight Eubanks & Jamell Young for a great location....

Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart

A Move to Massachussetts...

Massachusetts made the list of best places for gay families to reside, and not simply because it was the first state to legalize gay marriage...

Widely recognized as a top-rated town for its distinctive downtown, arts and culture, families, education, historic preservation and wide range of outdoor activities, the quaint New England town is an idyllic community.  In the heart of central Massachusetts’ Pioneer Valley, the town is just 30 miles east of the Berkshires, a region famous for its art galleries, music festivals, chichi restaurants and country inns. Cross-country and downhill skiing in the winter is just minutes away; and in spring and summer, there’s hiking, horseback riding and swimming throughout the area.  The 8-mile Norwottuck Rail trail, a paved-over railroad bed that passes through the town, is a favorite for families looking for a place to roller-blade, bike, run, or just take a stroll.  The charming campus of Smith College is perched high on the hill above the city’s historic commercial district and is one of five institutions of higher learning in the area. The prestigious Smith and nearby Mt. Holyoke are both all-women colleges. Smith’s impressive art museum and botanical garden draw residents and visitors alike. 

A walk through the town reveals a pleasant enclave of eclectic restaurants and shops, and gay couples are commonplace. Massachusetts was the first state to legalize same-sex marriage in 2004. Northampton is considered something of a liberal mecca, and has a non-discrimination ordinance in place to protect against discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity and expression.

Massachusetts: Permits single GLBT adoption. Does not clearly prohibit joint gay adoption. Second-parent adoption allowed.

With an outdoor wall mural celebrating women through the ages, a women’s college and a sex-toy shop specifically for women, Northampton is in many ways the ladies’ answer to the Massachusetts boys’ town, Provincetown.  The small but personable town of 30,000 flies a rainbow flag from its visitor center and the mayor since 2000, Clare Higgins, is an out lesbian.

Northampton has also hosted  its fair share of lesbian icons.



Source: 365gay.com

Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart

To Be Gay in New York...

 Yesterday, a bill was introduced that would grant married gay couples the ability to file state taxes in New York, if passed.  It's a leap forward considering New York doesn't recognize gay marriage...

New York assemblyman Daniel O’Donnel introduced a bill Tuesday that would grant greater tax equity to gay and lesbian couples.  Current state law forbids gay couples from filing joint income tax returns. The Defense of Marriage Act forbids the recognition of same-sex unions by federal agencies, including the IRS. In New York, an individual’s income tax filing status mirrors his or her federal status. Meaning, if a gay couple cannot file joint federal income tax returns, they may not file jointly in the state.  If passed, the proposed bill would allow married gay couples to file jointly on their state tax returns in spite of their federal status, said On Top MagazineAlthough gay marriages performed in New York are not legal, the state recognizes unions performed in other jurisdictions.

“New York State must remove every statutory barrier to the full recognition of legal same-sex marriages,” O’Donnel said. “Gay and lesbian spouses deserve every financial benefit that currently accrues to heterosexual married couples, regardless of whether or not the federal government recognizes those unions.”  State legislators are making great strides toward equal tax treatment for same sex couples. Still, some activists wonder: Are these new efforts helpful?  Last spring, Washington state lawmakers introduced an initiative that would tax the earnings of same-sex couples in domestic partnerships as they would married couples.  According to Komo News, “I-1077 would tax couples with adjusted gross incomes greater than $400,000 annually, or incomes of more than $200,000 for individuals.”  Gay advocates have expressed concerns that filing joint tax returns would result in unfair penalties for gay couples where only one partner makes more than $200,000.  “You would have seen gay and lesbian families paying significantly more taxes than their similarly situated heterosexual peers,” said Josh Friedes of Equal Rights Washington.

Source 365gay.com

Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Homeless and Gay...

Oftentimes, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) people find themselves homeless after coming out because their family is unable to accept them...

The Center for American Progress estimates in a new study that gay and transgender youth account for 20-40 percent of homeless youth in the US, while only about 5-10 percent of the general youth population is LGBT.The report comes just before the Obama administration is scheduled to release the first-ever national strategy to prevent and end homelessness.  The federal government’s budget for homeless-assistance programs is $4.2 billion, plus the $1.5 billion that President Obama included in the stimulus package last year. Out of that initial budget, only  $195 million is allocated to address youth homelessness, and an even smaller percentage of that goes specifically toward homeless youth who are on the streets without parents or other guardians.

The National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty estimates that approximately 3.5 million people experience homelessness each year in the US, about half of them being youth.  The Center for American Progress study examines not only the numbers of youth that are on the streets or in shelters each night, but also what that means for these individuals. The report offers statistics about how domestic abuse and violence leads to homelessness and how homelessness can lead to involvement in drug and alcohol abuse and sex work for survival.  The report also suggests that there is a disproportionate number of homeless LGBT youth because families are banishing their gay and transgender children as they come out younger and younger. In New York, the report finds, the average age that a gay or lesbian youth becomes homeless is 14.4 years old.  The White House has not indicated whether the new national strategy to end homelessness will address the disproportionate number of LGBT homeless youth.

Source: 365gay.com

Follow me on Twitter:@therealcstewart

FMLA for Gays & Lesbians

Change comes one step at a time.  President Obama has done an incredible job of including gay and lesbian people in incremental changes to current policies that exclude gay people.  We need to applaud him for the steps he has taken as opposed to criticizing him for the things he has yet to fulfill....

From our "It's about time" file, gays will be able to leave work to care for an ailing child. President Obama continues to slowly but surely chip away at discrimination against gays by tweaking the Family and Medical Leave Act. President Obama has made a number of small changes that have increased benefits to gays and lesbians since taking office. Under his administration, gay employees have been given long-term health insurance for their partners, day care, and child subsidies. The Federal Housing Authority cannot consider a loan applicant’s sexuality anymore. The Census Bureau will count the number of Americans who say they’re part of a same-sex couple. The president even addressed "modern families" in his Father's Day address. While people are throwing stones at him over "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," perhaps they should consider other changes he's made that have a far-reaching impact. Two snaps up!

SOURCE: http://www.eurweb.com/?p=31267

Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart

Love in Iowa

Considering its Midwest georgraphy, one would assume Iowa lacks progression, but it was voted number one for places gay and lesbian couples to settle down and raise families...

Big city amenities and small town hospitality give Iowa City the thumbs-up for one of our favorite cities to live in. A stroll through the downtown plaza and you’ll find a real sense of community and friendly commerce. You’ll find couples lounging in outdoor cafes on one corner, and the sounds of a local jazz band playing a catchy tune on the area’s outdoor mini stage on another. Tack on the fact that Iowa is a state that allows gay men and women to become foster parents and adopt, and it’s a home-run for couples looking for a place to settle down and raise a family.

The legalization of same-sex marriages took effect last spring in the progressive state of Iowa, as well. The city is so progressive that there isn’t much of a gay infrastructure. It’s more of the “live and let live” mentality that resonates across the communities here.

The progressive state of Iowa has a long history of protecting equal rights. They repealed laws against interracial marriage, slavery and segregated schools long before the federal government. It’s also one of the few states that has a law protecting students from sexuality-based harassment. Some of the reasons residents tout the city as one of the best places to raise a family include:
  • Low crime rate
  • Excellent school system
  • Affordable housing
  • Diverse, stable economy
  • Home to the University of Iowa
Iowa: Permits single GLBT adoption. Does not clearly prohibit joint gay adoption. Second-parent adoption allowed in some areas.

Source: 365gay.com

Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart

Monday, June 21, 2010

Gay & Lesbians at the White House...

For all the naysayers, here's more proof of change in the Obama administration...

The Obama administration has hired more openly gay and lesbian staffers than the Clinton and Bush administrations combined, a White House staffer says.  White House spokesperson Shin Inouye used a panel discussion on LGBT presidential appointees at the National Press Club as an opportunity to note this landmark.  The Presidential Appointments Project, a community driven effort coordinated by the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund, suggested the hiring of many of the over 100 openly gay appointees serving in the administration. “This has always been the point of the project – to make sure LGBT voices and their perspectives are heard at the highest levels of the U.S. government,” said George Walker, a vice president at the Gay & Lesbian Leadership Institute.

See the list of the openly gay and lesbian staffers working in the Obama administration compiled by the Pursuitist.

Source: 365gay.com

Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart

No Love is Worth Losing Your Mind...

She was independent, well dressed, well coiffed and the first in the family to graduate college.  She is my cousin Lisa.  In fact, she was my favorite cousin.  Lisa was a full-time student at Coppin State College majoring in business administration, and she worked full-time to support herself. There was a spirit about her that told you she would accomplish great things because she was an independent thinker, and her steps were dramatically different from those of her two sisters and brother.  Her "reach" was broader.  She was striving for things that no one in her immediate family dared to even dream about.  Lisa was the life of our family gatherings because of her quick wit, slick tongue and over the top laugh that beckoned your attention.

After years of dating this guy she met through our cousin she virtually abandoned her dreams, goals, aspirations and life to be with him.  She lost herself in him.  She was no longer the person she was when they met.  If I had the wisdom then I would have told her, as I often tell women  now, "A man is only interested if you're interesting"

Rumors were swirling that he was seeing another woman, but she didn't want to believe it even when some of our relatives confirmed it.  Her mission became: become his wife and have his child; which in retrospect I believe she only had his baby with thoughts of securing the relationship, but it didn't.  He married the girl he was cheating with and moved to Virginia.

As a result, my cousin "checked out" on life.  She literally lost her mind.  She spent time in and out of psychiatric wards because she suffered a nervous breakdown.  I believe it became too much for her to deal with when he completely disconnected from her.  Not only is Lisa estranged from the family, she has no relationship with the child she gave birth to because of her mental illness.  

I came across these videos that are apropos.  It speaks to strength.  Sadly, some men only respond to strength because they won't or can't understand weakness.   It's brash, but honest.

I often wonder what would've become of Lisa had she mustered the strength to move on with her life...







Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart

Friday, June 18, 2010

Random Thought, Patience with Pain

It's virtually impossible to compete with history.   No matter how great we are, to get involved with someone newly single is a recipe for heartache. There's a great possibility the relationship may rekindle or worse, he or she just may not be over their past and you're left holding your heart in your hand.

It's a process getting comfortable with being single. It's difficult being alone with your thoughts. Going to bed alone night after night without any prospects of meeting someone new can be challenging, but it's necessary for personal growth and closure.

"Single" can be good to you...

Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart

Lesbian Coach Banned from Church

This is a classic example of discrimination at its best by the church. A women’s softball team was banned from a church league in Tennessee because the coach is gay. Are they planning to do a complete sweep of the church? Shouldn't they fire or ban everyone that doesn't match their expectations? Wonder what would happen if they decided to exclude black or Latino people.

Coach Jana Jacobson said that in meetings in preparation for the league’s softball season, the minister of the Bellevue Baptist Church, Scotty Shows, told her that her team could not participate in the league because letting her participate would send a message to church members that the church condones her sexuality.

Tennessee civil rights lawyer Richard Fields said that the church’s prohibition on Jacobson’s team does not seem legal. “This is totally insane, and the gay community of Memphis should protest it, as well as the straight community," he said. "None of us should have to put up with that." Even though Fields suggested that Jacobson has a good chance in a lawsuit, Jacobson said she is not seeking a change in policy, nor would she return to the league if they did rescind the decision.

Source: 365gay.com

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Latifah Dodges the Lesbian Question, again

 Some assume Queen Latifah is a lesbian. She hints around, but the mystery lingers on. Wouldn't it be great to finally have a voice for black gay people? Here's a piece of her interview...

Upscale: You’ve been asked so much about your sexuality. Wouldn’t it be easier at this point to just speak on it-once-and be done with it?

Queen Latifah: I don’t have to explain anything. I don’t have to confirm anything. Look, I need my time. I need my life.

Upscale: But isn’t that a part of being a celebrity, letting people into your personal life?

Queen Latifah: You know, I was looking at something the other day. A magazine with Jennifer Aniston on the cover. That’s a strong woman right there. All of these people in her business — who is she dating? Angie this. Brad that. They come up with so much stuff. That’s a tough situation to be in. My situation is small compared to that. But still, I don’t feel like I need to explain. I’m the one living it. You write about it. You go ahead and speculate. I’ll just live it.

Source: Upscale magazine

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Thursday, June 17, 2010

Whitney Houston Confesses...


...that she hasn't been in good voice lately.  It goes without saying Whitney is and will always be "the voice". If she never records another song she's left her mark.  The "kids" will always love her. I was excited about her return. I thought she was capable and ready after she kicked the habit, but apparently she isn't. Seems the drug abuse has permanently damaged her voice and her career. Take a look at the pictures, this review and the video. She sounds horrible. I guess she should've packed up Bobbi Christina and retired to that island....

It was billed as a triumphant comeback, but Whitney Houston’s tour is not exactly panning out that way.  The 46-year-old singer, who looked bloated and sweaty on stage, delivered another disastrous performance in Denmark over the weekend.

Many members of the audience walked out during the singer’s latest concert in Copenhagen, according to local reports.  The Copenhagen Post claims that critics from ‘all of the major media outlets’ in the country were critical of the performance.  One reviewer wrote: ‘She looked and sounded like a person who doesn’t have many years left to live. At the end of the show she looked like she was ready to explode.’
Whitney’s tour, called Nothing But Love, has been nothing short of a mess.  Last month, she was forced to cancel her opening performance in Manchester after claiming she had caught a chest infection.  Her subsequent appearances in Birmingham and London – her first concert in the capital since 1999 – were heavily criticised with some fans demanding their money back.  Similar problems had beset the Australian and Asian legs of the tour in February when she also came under fire for forgetting the words to her songs.
 

Source: The Daily Fix

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Another Lawsuit against Denny's for Discrimination



 A transgendered Denny's employee sues for discrimination...

Briana Freeman had been using the women’s restroom at a Denny’s in Auburn, Maine for about a year, until in October 2007 a manager asked her to stop.  Last year, she sued Realty Resources Hospitality, the franchise owner of the Auburn Denny’s for the right to use the women’s restroom.


This week, the judge hearing Freeman v. Denny’s denied Denny’s request to drop the case. Androscoggin County Superior Court Justice William Brodrick wrote, “When viewing the facts in a light most favorable to the plaintiff, Ms. Freeman has adequately plead a claim that Denny’s prohibited her from using the women’s restroom because of her sexual orientation.”

“I live and breathe as a female every day. I dress it, I portray it. I exhibit it,” said Freeman in an interview with The Main Public Broadcasting Network. “I would feel too vulnerable and very much at physical risk of being attacked by any of the male patrons.”  Maine is one of 13 states in the nation with anti-discrimination laws that protect transgender individuals in the spheres of employment, housing, and public accommodations.  Even with legal protection, transgender individuals still face regular discrimination.

Patrick Mellor, the attorney representing Realty Resources Hospitality, said “It’s our position that Denny’s took the appropriate step and asked the plaintiff, whose legal name is Bruce Freeman and who was described as the sex of male at birth, to use the men’s restroom. That’s not a discriminatory action.”

The Maine Human Rights Act, which was extended to add “sexual orientation” to its list of protected classes in 2005, defines sexual orientation as “a person’s actual or perceived heterosexuality, bisexuality, homosexuality or gender identity or expression.”

Source: 365gay.com
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Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Bloggers Luncheon...

My day started with a private blogger luncheon hosted by fellow blogger Tammie Reed, "TalkingwithTami.com". The lunch was catered by DeCuir Gourmet Co., who was voted Atlanta's #1 black catering business of 2009 by the Atlanta Tribune.

The purpose of the luncheon was to acquaint a variety of bloggers together for the sole purpose of networking and linking each other.  I gained a great deal of knowledge that I will soon incorporate in my blog in the coming months.

David DeCuir is the owner of DeCuir Gourmet Co.  Originally from New Orleans, Louisiana, he has been in business for 10 years. For lunch, DeCuir prepared sweet pecan salad, smoked curry chicken salad with almonds, homemade Swedish meatballs, spinach & artichoke dip with mango tea and more! Some of their specialties include: Shrimp, Crab & Spinach Artichoke Dip, Spinach & Salmon Artichoke Dip, and Cajun Fried Catfish or Salmon.  All of the food had an incredible taste with that New Orleans kick.

DeCuir Gourmet Company caters corporate events, weddings, parties, etc.  They're web address: http://www.decuirgourmet.com/

Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart

Oily Beaches...

Some real shots of the Bp oil spill.  A friend of mine sent me these pictures.  These were taken with a camera phone from the beach home located at the Georgia/Alabama boarder.  BP should be ashamed...





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Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Just a Key, Part 2

CONTINUED…

The next morning, I had to work despite the fact I had just suffered through the most restless and sleepless night in a long time. I had promised myself many years before I would never allow any relationship get in the way of making money, so I was going to work. I may not get much accomplished while there, but I would be present and accounted for.

I got an email from him the next day at work explaining it wasn't his intention to hurt me. He said he wasn't expecting me to come over, and he didn't understand why I was upset because I had ended the relationship.  I later found out Terrance's luggage was for a trip to Las Vegas to see Cirque du Soleil; soft plans he and I made while on the cruise.  My first instinct was to go online and cancel the trip since I knew his Delta skymiles account number, but I decided against it.  "I'm better than that," I thought, and you never allow someone to make you something or someone you're not.

As I sat at my desk with tears in my eyes, my mind drifted back to when we met. It was the middle of May 2003. We were at a fiesta party and the theme was Mexican. We sipped margaritas and ate tacos, salsa, and guacamole.  I was rocking corn rows at the time. That day I was dressed in true Maryland/D.C. style.  I had on a pair of butter Timberland boots, blue jeans and a black fitted cut off shirt. He knew my friend Tito that invited me to the party, so, he asked Tito who I was and if he would introduce us. Tito told him, "That's Craig. Introduce yourself."

Moments later, he walked over to me and said, "Wait five minutes, then meet me downstairs." I didn't know if it was a joke or if he was serious. "Were these really his first words to me," I pondered. I met him downstairs, but there were so many people that we ended back upstairs in the kitchen. He introduced himself, "I'm Andre."  He was at the party with his best friend. They knew of another party and wanted me and Tito to follow them so we did. As we tailed them to the party, he and I talked on the phone the entire way. There were many things I knew about him already because Tito was our mutual friend and quite naturally his name had come up in general conversation before.

It became clear why his best friend drove his brand new Mercedes CLK.  When we arrived at the second party, he walked over to me and it was obvious he was "full" of alcohol.  He kissed me as soon as I got out of the car. His friend yelled, "Andre, get off that boy!"  Somehow, we ended up kissing in one of the bedrooms of the house as the party continued just outside the bedroom door.  Not longer after we fell on the bed, his friend came to break us up and escorted us out of the room.

The following Wednesday I invited him over for dinner and he introduced me to Lizz Wright's "Open Your Eyes".  The conversation had a flow to it.  We just seemed to click.  Before he left, he asked if he could have a kiss.  I told him, "Nah, maybe on the next date."  He said, "Stop playing.  We've already kissed."  I pulled him over to me and kissed him.

A week later, I found out through our conversation he was attending a party at this spot in downtown Atlanta called Endenu, so I gathered my friends to be there coincidentally.  It was the spring Beyonce's "Crazy in Love" came out.  As we were walking up to the club, I saw him drive by.  He obviously saw me too because he tooted his horn.  When we met inside he asked if I wanted a drink.  I think I was drinking rum and coke at the time.  He said he really enjoyed dinner and wanted to see me again.  He suggested I have breakfast with him.  "I'm not spending the night with you," I told him.   He said, "Not like that.  I'll cook.  You can come over Monday morning since it's Memorial Day."  He asked what I liked, so he could have it.  The date was set.

I called him that Monday on his home phone.  Normally, I would call the cell first, but I figured since we were having breakfast at his house, I would call there because he should be there.   There was no answer.  I left a message.  I tried his cell.  Again, no answer.  I left a message.  I never heard back from him on Monday, so, on Tuesday I deleted his number from my phone.  I have a rule, delete the number before you abuse the number.  I didn't hear from him Tuesday or Wednesday.  He called late Thursday evening.  When I saw the number I knew immediately it was him.  I was preparing to leave home to participate in a panel discussion, but I picked up, "Hello," I said real flat.  He said, "Hey," with vibrance and excitement like we had talked that week or he as if he hadn't stood me the hell up.  "Who is this?!" with aggravation in my tone.  "This is Andre," he said.  "You said 'hey' like I've talked to you," I snapped.  Before he could answer, "I'm on my way to a meeting.  I have to call you back," I said matter of factly.

Two hours later I called him back.  I was nervous he wouldn't answer, but I took the chance and called anyway.  He answered.  He made an attempt to have general conversation without addressing the date he missed.  "I have to tell you before we go any further," I started.  "This isn't about us not having breakfast because I understand things come up.  This is about you not extending the courtesy to me that I would've extended to you.  If you weren't able to have breakfast you should've called.  There really is no excuse for you not calling because even if something happened to your  (cell) phone you could've reached me because we have mutual friends.  I'm telling you this because I don't want to teach you, by not saying anything, that you can pull this with me again."  He said, "You're right.  I'm sorry.  I had a hangover Monday because we went to another club. On Tuesday, I was backed up at work because of the holiday and I work late the first Wednesday of every month so I didn't have time to call you until tonight."  Before he could catch his breath I said, "The president of the United States had time to run the country, be married to Hillary and have an affair with Monica Lewinsky.  You're not that busy."  He said, "It won't happen again."

I decided to resave his number, but I wouldn't initiate any plans with him until he proved he was not playing games.  If we were going to see each other it would be at his suggestion.  I knew he had "fans" that allowed him to do whatever because he was a catch. He had a great career, homes (yes, more than one) and was easy on the eyes.  I also decided I would only call him if he had called me first.  I'm not a game player, but I know the game.  When he stood me up, the rules for how we would play changed for me.  I needed to know he was really interested.  We talked on the phone a few times a week and had great conversation, but I always got off the phone first.  There were days I wanted him to call that he didn't, but I stood my ground.  I had a standard.  Eventually, we were talking everyday and he asked me to a concert.  The rest was history.  He asked if we could date exclusively several times before I agreed. 

He was the first person (man or woman) that I fell in love with because we shared so many "firsts".  He was the first person I lived and travelled with.  I could never have predicted we would end the way we did.  That relationship taught me so much about people, life, love, emotions, companionship and pain.  It took two years to cleanse myself of the residual feelings I had.  Every relationship after, I chose someone I knew would love me more than I loved  because I never wanted to feel that loss again should it end.  I've since learned I can love, but always keep a piece of me for me.

He was the first, but not the last.... 

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Protected Sex or Unprotected Sex?

There has always been misinformation about whether or not a person who is HIV positive, but undetectable passing the virus to someone HIV negative; and whether or not HIV positive couples should or shouldn't engage in unprotected sex.  Listen & learn.  May be life changing...




Get the Latest on Gay Marriage and Other News
 
Source: 365gay.com
 
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Gay Prom King & "Queen"

Prom with a twist...

The gay community and proms have had a rather rough relationship this year, but a high school in New York bucked the trend by electing two openly gay boys their prom king and queen.  Charlie Ferrusi and Timmy Howard are best friends and seniors at Hudson High School where their peers voted them king and queen by an overwhelming majority.  “It’s a really big step for Hudson but also for the gay community in general,” Howard said in an interview with The Register Star. “To have this happen in our city is pretty exciting.”

In 2008, a male student, Augie Abatecola, ran for prom queen at Hudson High and won the election, but school officials refused him his crown. Ferrusi and Howard checked with the administration before the prom this time, and received official approval to run.  The school principal, Steven Spicer said, “We’re proud of all our students. They know they have the right to pick whoever they want. It was exciting for them and it was exciting for Charlie and Tim.”

Ferrusi and Howard say they plan on participating in Hudson, NY’s first ever gay pride parade which will be on Sun, June 20. They will don their crowns and homemade sashes.

Source: 365gay.com

Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart

Monday, June 14, 2010

Hypocrits Who Contradict...

I enjoyed this story for many reasons.  It speaks directly to hypocrisy & the contradictions of man's ideas about sin.  Some point fingers and judge others for sins they don't commit, but are guilty of other sins i.e. "born again Christians" who commit adultery; pass judgment, but send all gay people to hell (in their minds).  However, when it's a sin they have indulged the rules or standard conveniently changes in an attempt to create a hierarchy in sin.  Being gay isn't the sin.  The act of sex is the sin (gay or straight).  Who isn't guilty of fornicating?  I took the liberty of "bolding" & italicizing my favorite line.  It was profound.  Here's the story...

My grandmother, Mama Irene, possessed that South Carolina wisdom we called Mother Wit, and she loved to share her rich wisdom with her grandchildren.  I remember the time when she let me know in no uncertain terms that a man and woman living together without benefit of marriage were "living in sin." But then she said, "There is so much good in the worst of us, and so much bad in the best of us, that it doesn't behoove any of us to talk about the rest of us."

Mama Irene was our family's Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Bonhoeffer was a German theologian who resisted the Nazis during WWII. In his book, Life Together, he was clear that "we are, in fact, sinners." However, the reason Bonhoeffer and Mama Irene knew that everyone was a sinner was because they had witnessed the horrible discrimination and violence human beings are capable of--and none are innocent.

But that is different from the "wink, wink" of those who say that being lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT) is simply another sin. I remember, as I grew up in North Carolina and Texas, that some people looked down on those of us who were black and said, "We are all children of God"--"wink, wink." When I hear Christians talk about LGBT people and say they "love the sinner, but hate the sin," I know I am face-to-face with a same old judgmental attitude that harms everyone in its path, and has a kind of spiritual arrogance about it.

Sadly, this bad judgment is often bolstered by references to the Bible: "Look, it says right here..." Many of us in the church are deeply concerned when the Bible is used to declare that some persons are to be treated differently or called "sinner" because of who they are. We remember that the so-called "Noah's curse" or "curse of Ham" was used to demean and dehumanize persons of African descent. The enslavement of Africans and the segregation of African Americans were justified by persons who claimed that they were Bible-believing as they said, "The Bible says black people sinned and are now cursed to be servants and slaves."

Source: 365gay.com

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Sunday, June 13, 2010

It's "YOUR" Time...

It's Sunday evening.  I'm home cooking, making phone calls and planning my week which consists of shooting a trailer for "A Day in the Life" beginning Tuesday.  As I was confirming locations and scheduling dates & times for the shoot this song, "It's Your Time" played in the background. I stopped to remember where I was when I first heard this.  Not physically where I was, but emotionally & financially.  Things looked and felt bleak.  I couldn't see any light from where I was, nor could I imagine, see or think of how things could possibly come together for my dreams to materialize.  But, there was always a whisper in the back of my mind, "Keep going.  Keep planning.  Keep believing.  Keep adjusting to the circumstances.  Keep visualizing it..."

Listen, enjoy and be inspired to keep going because the universe has no option but to respond to you when you're persistent; your time too shall come.

The bible says, ..."time and chance happeneth to EVERY man..."

Think of how empty the world would be without your gift!



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Friday, June 11, 2010

Give Him a Chance to Call...

There is no secret to dating or finding someone to grow with except being your authentic self because anything other than that is deception.  The biggest mistake, I think, is doing, giving and saying too much too soon. Allow things to flow organically not methodically, and don't be too anxious.  Once you've called him, give him the space to call you back. If he doesn't return the call the same day, so what.  Find something to do with yourself.  You're looking desperate already (if that bothers you) and you haven't had the first date. You have to offer something different! 

We sometimes push too hard when we're in that "anxious" space.  What's the anxious space?  The point at which you're ready to be with someone, settle down so badly because you've been single for awhile or you've finally met someone that interests you so you want to pounce on them. Slow that ass down!

The first date should NOT feel like an interview.  You don't have to find out everything on day one.  It's a progression.  The dating phase is the period to feel one another out.  It is techinically the longest "interview" we'll ever have. You're determining through every phone call and outing whether or not you're compatible; if there's growth potential; a future. 

That anxious space causes some to ask, do and say too much then you end up appearing "thirsty" and ultimately calling or texting too much.  Don't be a junior stalker.  Remember, you too, are the prize. I'm not advising at all to play games, but know the game.  Dating is an art. You want to peek interest.  He can't "think" to call you if you're calling him every few hours.  If a day or so passes without communication, great.  There will be more to discuss on the next date or phone call.  You should ALWAYS assume he's dating someone when you meet; not exclusively, but casually.

Do not break your neck to answer every call. You have a life and you had one before he showed up; so does he!  More importantly, he hasn't earned that level of priority , yet.  Never cancel plans (especially with friends) to be with him. The message you'll send him, you're desperate.  Allow him to make plans with you.  It gives you a gauge whether or not he's interested in you.   If you're always suggesting things to do you'll never know. 

Once you get to the first date, don't go into it trying to impress him. Just be. Be the same person your friends and family adore. A "name dropper" or show off is a turn off! 

Your behavior, his behavior during the dating phase foreshadows what the relationship will be. If he lies now, he'll lie later.  The slate doesn't get wiped clean once you decide to call it a relationship.

(YELLING) LET HIM CALL SOMETIMES!!  Get a hobby.  Have a life outside of him...

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Thursday, June 10, 2010

Traditional Families...

This is good news and support for those considering adoption...

A new study concludes that children raised by lesbian parents do fine socially, psychologically and academically and, in fact, may be better adjusted than children brought up in “traditional” families.  According to Us News and World Report, the 20-year study followed 78 pairs of lesbian mothers from their pregnancies and found that their children, now in their adolescence, “demonstrate healthy psychological adjustment."

When compared to peers, children of lesbian mothers were found to have “fewer social problems, and less aggressive and rule-breaking behaviors than other teens” – which is not what anti-gay activists would have predicted.

“One of the things that opponents of the equalities of gays and lesbians — in marriage, parenting, adoption and foster care — often bring up is the so-called gold standard of parenting, which defined by them is the traditional family where children are conceived in traditional ways and not through insemination or surrogates,” said study author Dr. Nanette Gartrell. “But, when we compared the adolescents in our study to the so-called gold standard, we found the teens with lesbian mothers were actually doing better.”  The study attributes the healthier adjustment of these children to the commitment of their mothers. “”The outcomes here were very clear. These are families in which the mothers were very committed, involved and loving,” said Gartrell.

Gartrell expects similar results among children of gay men – “another group of very committed parents.”

Gatrell’s findings are set to be published in the July issue of Pediatrics.

Source: 365gay.com
 
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Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Gay McDonald's Commercial

France has always been ahead of The U.S. with respect to sexuality and their freedom in their television commercials.  Can you imagine when this type of commercial runs in the states?  It's in French, so pay attention to the subtitles..mmm, I'm lovin it McDonald's!



Follow me on Twitter: @therealcstewart

The Sandra Bullock, Scarlett Johannson Kiss


Of course they're not gay, but I thought this would be fun...

So, we’ve all been talking about it. The kiss that rocked the world!  Sandra Bullock stole the show Sunday night when she locked lips with Scarlett Johansson at the MTV Movie Awards Sunday.

The Blind Side star was on hand to accept the MTV Generation Award presented to her by wife of her Proposal costar, Scarlett Johansson.  Johansson filled in for husband Ryan Reynolds who couldn’t make it. Even so, Johansson said “she wanted to be there when Bullock and Rynolds took home the award for Best Kiss,” the Advocate reported.

“I thought you should have won…it was a great kiss,” Johansson joked while presenting the award. The two giggled as Scarlet leaned in and BOOM!! They kissed! And it was quite lovely!

Watch it here in case you missed it.




Source: 365gay.com

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Tuesday, June 8, 2010

We're All Sinners. Why Single Out Gays?

If we can't agree that being gay is a matter of biology (generally speaking) there will always be a debate on whether or not it's a choice...

When my home state of Maryland updated its benefits policy for state employees last month, it became the 18th state (plus the District of Columbia) to cover same-sex spouses who possess a valid marriage certificate. Depending on your point of view, this marked a great advance in the quest for equal rights, or another step downward as society abandons traditional marriage and values.

The issue has been particularly contentious among Christians, with some fighting strenuously for gay rights and the ability for gays to be themselves--openly--in the church. Others, particularly many African-American Christians, provide some of the loudest and sustained dissent whenever the subject is broached.

As a straight man, I have only recently come to a clear position myself, which must be balanced against my Christian faith, my "agape" love for all mankind, and the number of my friends and relatives who are gay. With my newfound clarity, I can remain true to all of the above. I credit Leonard Pitts, the nation's best columnist in my opinion, for helping me find peace on the issue. In one of his typically brilliant columns earlier this year, after former Democratic Rep. Eric Massa resigned from Congress, Pitts lamented gays' inability to admit their preferences publically.

He wrote: "So you have to wonder: how many Massas and Ashburns, how many James Wests, Ted Haggards, Mark Foleys and Larry Craigs do we have to see, how many shocked spouses and embarrassed children do we have to endure, how many lies, alibis and justifications do we need to hear, before we accept the obvious: Gay is not a choice, gay is not a sin, gay is not a shame."

That column helped me find clarity, but as a Christian, I do have to disagree with him on that middle clause. If we're going to be true to the faith, there are sins (lying, stealing and killing). And homosexuality is a sin, too, specifically, a sexual sin. Just like fornication and adultery are sins, too; specifically, they are sexual sins.

Source: TheRoot.com

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