Friday, December 19, 2014

Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi Admits Defeat On Same-Sex Marriage


Via press release, virulently anti-gay Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi issued this statement on the US Supreme Court's denial of request to keep same-sex marriage from beginning in Florida January 6th:

"Tonight, the United States Supreme Court denied the State’s request for a stay in the case before the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals. Regardless of the ruling it has always been our goal to have uniformity throughout Florida until the final resolution of the numerous challenges to the voter-approved constitutional amendment on marriage. Nonetheless, the Supreme Court has now spoken, and the stay will end on Jan. 5."

Bite me, Pam Bondi. You lost.

You stood against equal rights for all, and you lost.

SCOTUS Denies Florida Request For Extension Of Same-Sex Marriage Ruling Stay


Florida's Republican Attorney General Pam Bondi has spent months fighting rulings in favor of overturning her state's ban on same-sex marriage.

In fact, she recently asked the US Supreme Court to extend the current stay on one of those rulings as the case awaits it's turn at the 11th Circuit Court.

Color me shocked, but that request was just denied.

Although Justice Clarence Thomas (who oversees such requests for the 11th Circuit) referred the matter to the full court - which decided against extending the stay - both he and Justice Scalia noted that they would have granted the extension.

Here's the background on the case via Chris Johnson at the Washington Blade:

In August, U.S. District Court Judge Robert Hinkle ruled against the state’s ban on same-sex marriage, known as Amendment 2, but placed a stay on his order until 91 days passed after the appeals process was completed in the Utah, Oklahoma and Virginia marriage cases. When the U.S. Supreme Court refused to review these cases, it set for date for same-sex couples to be able to marry in Florida starting Jan. 5.

Bondi tried to extend the stay on the same-sex marriages as she continued to defend the law in court, but her requests were by denied by the district court as well as the U.S. Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals, which ordered the stay to be lifted “at the end of the day” on Jan. 5.

Nadine Smith, CEO of Equality Florida, issued this statement: "We are thrilled the U.S. Supreme Court has denied the State's request to delay marriages in Florida. Every day of delay is another day of harm experienced by thousands of loving and committed same-sex couples in Florida. It's time to break out the wedding bells! We look forward to January 6th being a special day -- Florida is ready for the freedom to marry."

I reported yesterday that Osceola County Clerk of the Courts Armando Ramirez has stated that if the stay was lifted, his courthouse would open at 12:01 a.m. on Jan. 6 to issue marriage licenses and possibly perform services.

I mentioned I'm shocked as this is the first time that SCOTUS has denied such a request before a federal appeals court had ruled on the issue. That said, I think it's a clear indication of the thinking of the high court in terms of marriage equality :)

Happy Dance Time!

DJ Calvin Harris Transforms For Armani


Calvin Harris is one of the highest-paid DJs in the world. I constantly see huge billboards with his face all over Las Vegas where he frequently takes the party late into the night.

DJ-ing around the world, collaborating with folks like Kylie and Rihanna, among many others), he was recently asked to take part in a photo shoot for the new Armani spring campaign.

The transformation from before to after is pretty fab. You can see the Before pic above - now check out Calvin's amazing "after party."


Hey Mr. DJ!

(h/t OUT)

The Warwick Rowers Serenade You With Christmas Carols (In Their Underwear)

Warwick Rowers in their underwear explain their 2015 calendar and what it's all about

Five members of the Warwick Rowers serenade you with Christmas carols (in their underwear) and explain the history of their best-selling calendar.

So, you may not tune in for the carols but the vision (and view) of the calendar can't be beat.

Purchase their 2015 calendar and support their cause through Sport Allies - a program that reaches out to young people challenged by bullying, homophobia or low self-esteem in the sports world.



(h/t WOW)

Sir Ian McKellan Teaches Cookie Monster To "Resist"


From the clip description:

You shall not pass! Please resist!The word resist means to control yourself and stop yourself from doing something you really want to do, though that's not a word that Cookie Monster really understands. Ian McKellen demonstrates.

How fab that we have had Sesame Street and all the amazing celebrities who drop by to teach kids on so many levels. It really is charming.


Department Of Justice Says Title VII Bans Workplace Discrimination Against Transgender People


According to a memo released by US Attorney General Eric Holder, the Department of Justice will now interpret Title VII of the Civil Rights Act as explicitly prohibiting workplace discrimination against transgender people.

The AP reports that "in defending lawsuits, the federal government also will no longer take the position that Title VII of the federal Civil Rights Act, which bans sex discrimination, does not protect against workplace discrimination on the basis of gender status."

Poland Rejects Civil Unions For The Third Time


For the third consecutive year, Poland lawmakers have voted down putting civil unions on the agenda for this session of Parliament.

The bill was rejected by a vote of 235 ballots to 185, with 18 abstentations.

Last year's vote in 2013 saw the legislation go down by only 17 votes.

Poland currently does not offer any legal recognition of same-sex couples.

Insert your favorite Polish joke here...

(source)

12 Days Of Christmas Music: Vanessa Williams "Do You Hear What I Hear?"


The luminous Vanessa Williams sings "Do You Hear What I Hear?" from the 2000 TV special Christmas Concert in Vienna.  I just love this.

The special also starred  Placido Domingo, Tony Bennett and Charlotte Church.

Vanessa's holiday CDs get played continuously in my house during the holidays. "Vantastic" vocals from a true talent, and the arrangements are perfection.  You can find them on iTunes here.


Music Video: Tom Goss & Amber Ojeda "Festivus"


Talented hottie Tom Goss and Amber Ojeda help you celebrate "Festivus for the rest of us."




Two Minute Science Lesson: Are You Sitting Too Much?


Are you sitting too much? And how bad can that be for your health? Watch this video from the AsapSCIENCE guys and be smarter in two minutes.

Plus, if you find you're alarmed at the results of years of sitting click here for tips to counteract "sitting syndrome."


Teaser: Meryl Streep In "Into The Woods"


In this new clip from the upcoming INTO THE WOODS movie, Meryl Streep's "Witch" instructs the Baker and his wife (played by James Corden and Emily Blunt) how they might undo the curse which keeps them childless.

The reviews keep coming in strong for the Stephen Sondheim movie musical directed by Rob Marshall. Opens in wide release Christmas Day.

Stephen Colbert Beats Death, Achieves Immortality and Flies Into Eternity In Santa's Sleigh


After beating Death in a game of chess - thus ensuring his immortality - Stephen Colbert's big finish to his long-running Comedy Central show last night included an epic star-studded group singalong of "We'll Meet Again."

Joining Colbert were Jon Stewart, Andy Cohn, Randy Newman, Willie Nelson, Cyndi Lauper, Sen. Cory Booker, Henry Kissinger, Bryan Cranston, Tom Brokaw, Katie Couric, George Lucas, Big Bird and Cookie Monster from "Sesame Street", James Franco, Arianna Huffington, Bill de Blasio, Jeff Daniels, Barry Manilow, Charlie Rose, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Keith Olbermann, Andrew Sullivan, Mike Huckabee, Elijah Wood, Bill Clinton, Dan Savage, J.J. Abrams, astronauts at the ISS, and many others.

And how else could this singular sensation sign off for the last time but from Santa's sleigh accompanied by Jeopardy's Alex Trebek and a unicorned Abraham Lincoln flying off into eternity...?

Check the clips below. And thanks Stephen Colbert for the laughs. See you next year when you take over for David Letterman on CBS.


Thursday, December 18, 2014

Dow Jones Industrial Average Jumps 412 Points

Naked Dan Osbourne Wishes You Merry Christmas

A shirtless Dan Osbourne wishes you Merry Christmas!

TOWIE star Dan Osbourne wishes you a very merry (and naked) Christmas!

Naked Dan Osbourne wishing you a Merry Christmas!

More pics from Dan at VJBrendan.

News Round-Up: December 18, 2014


Channing Tatum covers Esquire Magazine

Seth Rogen really doesn't have ANYTHING to say about Sony Pictures cancelling release of his film "The Interview" due to terrorist threat

GOP lawmaker introduces bill requiring women to get permission from male partner for abortion unless "legitimate rape"

Denmark says it owns the North Pole

The ACLU of Florida to SCOTUS: “Every day that the couples we represent and the thousands of families across Florida who are also denied the protections of marriage go without those protections, they are suffering real harm."

Sweet coming out story - High school soccer player comes out by dancing with Homecoming King boyfriend

Michael Martin (L) with his Homecoming King boyfriend, Jem

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