Saturday, February 18, 2017
Podcast: Jeb Havens, Barronelle Stutzman, Texas' "Bathroom Bill," Finland Ready For Marriage Equality
Click play below as I recap this week's top headlines from politics, pop culture and entertainment of interest to the LGBT community:
• Anti-LGBT florist Barronelle Stutzman loses again - this time in the Washington state supreme court over refusing to sell flowers for a same-sex wedding
• Texas gets pushback from the NBA and major stars on it’s proposed anti-transgender “bathroom bill”
• North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper shares his plan to repeal his state's anti-LGBT law, HB2
• Finland’s Parliament kills a last ditch attempt to block same-sex marriage
• Out singer/songwriter Jeb Havens dropped his uber-romantical, world-traveler music video just in time for Valentine's Day - "Pushy Little Compass Heart" from his album, Home Base
Hit play below - and share the link to share The Randy Report podcast!
|(via Gallup Polls)|
The bad news just keeps coming for President Trump.
Two new polls show his approval rating continues to drop to historic lows.
Gallup Polls' three day rolling average shows the president with only 38% of Americans approving of the job he's doing. His DISapproval rating is an alarmingly high 56%.
Over at Pew Research, the Trumpster has slid to a 39% approval rating, while his disapproval numbers match Gallop at 56%.
At the one month mark in previous president's terms:
• President Barack Obama’s approval had a 64% approval rating
• President George W. Bush had a 53% approval rating
• President Bill Clinton had a 56% approval rating
• President George H.W. Bush had a 63% approval rating
• President Ronald Reagan had a 55% approval rating
Posted by Randy Slovacek at 9:14 AM
New music video from out singer/songwriter Jeb Havens for his song "Pushy Little Compass Heart" from his debut solo album, Home Base.
I'm not scared of losing my way anymore
Cuz I've got this pushy little compass of a heart leading me straight to yours
Jeb, who's been on a world trek for almost a year with his fiancé, shares on Facebook:
Exactly 1 year ago, I released my album "Home Base".
Today, I'm releasing the music video for the single "Pushy Little Compass Heart", a song about finding your way towards the one you love. Steven and I filmed the video during our 5-day, 41-mile trek through gorgeous Abel Tasman, New Zealand. Hope you enjoy it.
I've previously featured Jeb and his music here and here and here and here.
Posted by Randy Slovacek at 9:01 AM
Every bit as loathsome as you've heard, Breitbart editor and professional child Milo Yiannopoulos made the most of his appearance on last night's HBO's Real Time with Bill Maher.
Although he only did the one-on-one segment near the beginning of the show with Maher, he did join the panel for the online post-show segment.
And that's where things got rocky.
Yiannopoulos was defending his past remarks about transgender people and Larry Wilmore got heated with him over that, saying similar discriminatory remarks have been made against gay people.
But things got personal when Yiannopoulos told Maher he needs to start “inviting higher IQ guests” on the show. Wilmore told him, “You can go fuck yourself.”
He went off on Yiannopoulos and told him “go fuck yourself” again for trolling Leslie Jones over Ghostbusters.
The surprise of the evening was Maher treating Yiannopolous with such kid gloves.
One example - the exchange in this segment, when the icky Milo says of transgender people:
Yiannopolous: "I think women and girls should be protected from having men who are confused about their sexual identities from their bathrooms.”
Maher: “That’s not unreasonable.”
Women and children are in no danger of transgender folks wanting to use the bathroom. Maher's agreement was a bit chilling.
Milo really is rather infantile, and lashes out just to get a response or attention. It's his own form of self-entertainment.
Earlier in the show, Maher asked him about rumors that he doesn't hire gay people. This was his reply:
“Oh, no! You can’t trust them to show up to work on time. Too much drugs, too much sex, they’re always making excuses,” said Yiannopoulos, inspiring boos from the audience. He then turned to the audience and giggled: “I’m just kidding. You’re easy. You’re very easy. Very easily triggered. It’s pathetic.”
And his body language is oddly telling. He frequently drops his chin and looks through his eye brows when addressing people. According to body language experts, "A lowered head covers the neck with the chin and hence can be a defensive posture that can occur as a result of any perceived threat (not just physical threat). It can also be a sign of defiance or caution, for example when showing respect to an enemy ('You are strong and I do not trust you')."
Posted by Randy Slovacek at 7:54 AM
Friday, February 17, 2017
After staying on message almost all day, the Donald just couldn't handle it anymore and had to go rogue on Twitter yet again against the media.
It's notable how often Trump says "fake news media" is the enemy, but never says the regarding Russia undermining our democracy.
When you're the guy with a 38% approval rating, it takes nerve to call someone else "failing."
The FAKE NEWS media (failing @nytimes, @NBCNews, @ABC, @CBS, @CNN) is not my enemy, it is the enemy of the American People!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 17, 2017
"One of the most effective press conferences I've ever seen!" says Rush Limbaugh. Many agree.Yet FAKE MEDIA calls it differently! Dishonest— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 17, 2017
Decoded: one or more of NYT, CNN or NBCNews has a very very damaging story in the pipeline …— David Frum (@davidfrum) February 17, 2017
Posted by Randy Slovacek at 6:36 PM
Some news items you may have missed:
• This 22 year St. Louis police veteran (above) was told to "tone down" his "gayness" if he ever wanted to get promoted, despite placing 3rd out of 26 in promotion tests.
• Lady Gaga joined over 140 celebrities in denouncing Texas' anti-transgender "bathroom bill."
• Donald Trump's second pick for National Security Adviser (now that Michael Flynn has resigned) has said "no, thank you" to the offer. According to reports, retired Vice Admiral Robert Harward turned down the chance citing "chaos" in the White House, labeling the offer as a “shit sandwich.”
• Finland's Parliament rejects a citizen's initiative to repeal marriage equality by a vote of 120 to 48. Hurray for the good guys!
• Donald Trump heads to Mar-a-Lago again this weekend. His three trips to his southern home have thus far cost the American people almost $10 million. Guarding Trump Tower in NYC could cost $183 million a year.
• Spend a few minutes inside the trials and tribulations of transgender folks in this short film, "Headspace," by Jake Graf. Watch below:
President Trump's press conference yesterday was easily THE news of the day.
Folks from all over the political spectrum couldn't turn away.
Thank you for all of the nice statements on the Press Conference yesterday. Rush Limbaugh said one of greatest ever. Fake media not happy!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 17, 2017
Far-right talk radio's Rush Limbaugh called it "one of the most effective press conferences I have ever seen."
CNN’s Jake Tapper described it as “unhinged” and an airing of grievances à la Festivus.
Then there was this reaction on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" today:
.@JoeNBC on Trump’s press conference: One of the most chaotic, rambling press conferences anybody has ever seen https://t.co/k32N2yzdzV— Morning Joe (@Morning_Joe) February 17, 2017
And, of course, the late night comics had a field day:
Jimmy Kimmel: “Except for ‘Fox & Friends,’ the president is extremely angry at the news media. Apparently, he spends a lot of time watching people talk about him and it gets him riled up. Would someone unplug his TV and take his phone away before we all get blown to smithereens here?”
Stephen Colbert: “It was a robust one hour and 17 minutes long. That is beefy. So beefy, you could eat it with a fork. But you’re going to want to use a spoon to get every drop of the crazy.”
Trevor Noah: “We had a really nice show planned for you — very civil, very calm — and then, in the middle of the day, Hurricane Trump happened. Again.”
Posted by Randy Slovacek at 12:25 PM
About Chulo Underwear:
"CHULO is a new a line of clothing and gear that is culturally-relevant to today's marginalized youth of color. Our mission as a company is to inspire young people to invest in a brand that invests in them. Each time a young person buys the brand, s/he is having a direct and immediate impact on his/her own community because proceeds are reinvested back into a local CBO, scholarship program or charity that services these very same youth.
"To do this, CHULO partners with local community centers to identify, educate, train and ultimately hire young people to be part of the CHULO design team as artists, designers, writers, promoters, vendors and/or promotional spokespersons.
"The CHULO brand is now one-year old. We have partnered with the Bronx Academy of Arts and Dance (BAAD), Uprose Brooklyn, and Tropical Images' GKOTS (Get Kids Off The Street Program. We have also donated to several other programs including El Museo del Barrio, the American Indian College Fund, the National Puerto Rican Day Parade Scholars Program, the Loisaida Center, El Maestro Boxing Club and Cultural Center, the LGBT Arts Program of the Church of St. Luke in the Fields, the Caribbean Cultural Center, and the GED Program at Taino Towers."
Venezuela-born Lony Pizarro (above) was just one of the underwear models who chatted for charity.
Head over to Boy Culture for many, many more pics from the evening.
A little light-hearted fun for a Friday.
Hunky Andrew Christian models Cory Z. and Arad play a game of "Never Have I Ever...?"
Posted by Randy Slovacek at 8:23 AM
Thursday, February 16, 2017
Oh, sweet mother of humanity. Here's something to lift you up and make you feel good.
Filmed at this year's NFL Pro Bowl. From Ad Week:
The new 2:40 video has some inspired fun with a longstanding tradition at sporting events, the Jumbotron kiss cam, which finds couples in the crowd and encourages them to kiss. This time, though, the kiss cam is used, in the Ad Council’s words, as a “symbol for unbiased love” by featuring all forms of love—friendships, families and romantic relationships—across race, religion, gender, sexuality, ability and age.
The stunt begins with a fun bit of misdirection, as the first couple encircled by the kiss cam’s heart shape are a man and a woman. But the man then turns to his right and kisses his actual partner, who is a man—to cheers from the crowd.
The rest of the video, titled “Fans of Love,” continues in a similar way, featuring all sorts of real people and relationships as a way to celebrate diversity and promote inclusion.
“The NFL is strongly committed to diversity and inclusion. We are proud to be working with the Ad Council on their Love Has No Labels campaign,” added Anna Isaacson, the NFL senior vice president of social responsibility.
The campaign points to lovehasnolabels.com, which features a quiz to help people examine their own biases and resources on how to take actionable steps to rethink those biases. An interactive “Fans of Love” video will present relevant campaign facts and links to educational content to audiences as they are watching the film.
Posted by Randy Slovacek at 6:30 PM
Just goes to show you there are fair and balanced journalists at Fox News.
Of course it would be the gay news anchor :)
The Week has the details:
President Donald Trump praised Fox News during his combative press conference Thursday, but he certainly would not have liked what he saw if he turned on his TV afterward.
Fox News’ Shep Smith did not hold back when tearing into the president after the presser: “It’s crazy what we’re watching everyday,” Smith said. “It’s absolutely crazy. [Trump] keeps repeating throwaway lines that are not true at all and sort of avoiding this issue of Russia as if we’re some kind of fools for asking the question.”
As Smith went on, it appeared to occur to him that the president could be watching. He turned to stare directly into the camera and began to address Trump directly: “No sir,” Smith said. “We are not fools for asking the question and we demand to know the answer to this question. You owe this to the American people.”
All kinds of awesome. Watch below:
Posted by Randy Slovacek at 5:34 PM
Former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn may be in legal trouble for lying to the FBI when he was interviewed about his contact with Russian officials during the Trump transition period.
From the Washington Post:
Former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn denied to FBI agents in an interview last month that he had discussed U.S. sanctions against Russia with that country’s ambassador to the United States before President Trump took office, contradicting the contents of intercepted communications collected by intelligence agencies, current and former U.S. officials said.
The Jan. 24 interview potentially puts Flynn in legal jeopardy, as lying to the FBI is a felony, but any decision to prosecute would ultimately lie with the Justice Department. Some officials said bringing a case could prove difficult in part because Flynn may attempt to parse the definition of sanctions.
A spokesman for Flynn said he had no response. The FBI declined to comment.
Posted by Randy Slovacek at 1:57 PM
President Trump has promoted the idea that his win in the presidential campaign was "the largest margin since Ronald Reagan."
He was asked about that today at a press conference.
When presented with actual electoral votes by previous presidents since Reagan (Obama 333 votes, George H.W. Bush 426 votes), Trump backtracked by saying "I was given that information."
Trump also declared during the presser: “The leaks are real. The news is fake.”
I'm not sure how, if the "leaks" are real - the information leaked is real - how are the news stories about those leaks "fake?"
President Trump: “The leaks are absolutely real. The news is fake.”— Bradd Jaffy (@BraddJaffy) February 16, 2017
*** Both. Of. Those. Things. Cannot. Be. True. At. The. Same. Time. *** pic.twitter.com/trIcCuU8Sq
Posted by Randy Slovacek at 12:06 PM
ABC News reports that Barronelle Stutzman, the Washington state florist who refused to sell wedding flowers to a same-sex couple in 2013, has lost again in court.
This time it was a unanimous ruling from the nine Washington state Supreme Court justices who ruled Stutzman discriminated against the gay couple in 2013 according to the state's public accommodation laws.
Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson and the couple sued her, saying she broke state anti-discrimination and consumer protection laws, and the lower court agreed.
Today, the state's highest court upheld that verdict.
Stutzman's supporters maintain the ruling could "bankrupt" her. The penalty for the public accommodation violation is $1,000. Virulently anti-gay Alliance Defending Freedom is handling her court case for free.
Stutzman's defense was that she had previously sold flowers to the couple, but had to refrain on wedding flowers due to her personal religious beliefs. She feels selling flowers for a wedding she is not attending amounts to "promoting" or "supporting" same-sex marriage.
Stutzman's lawyers say they will now take the case to the U.S. Supreme Court.