Thursday, February 22, 2018

Florida: Officer At Parkland Shooting Stood Outside Instead Of Confronting Shooter

Nikolas Cruz
The NRA and Donald Trump have been touting that a trained professional with a gun could have stopped Nikolas Cruz from killing 17 people at the tragic gun massacre at a Parkland, Florida, high school last week.

Except - there was a trained professional with a gun onsite at the shooting.

The good guy with a gun never went in.

From The Wall Street Journal:

The sheriff’s deputy who was assigned to the Florida school where a gunman killed 17 people last week has left the force after evidence showed he stood outside the building where the shooting occurred rather than going in, Sheriff Scott Israel said Thursday.

“He never went in,” Sheriff Israel said, describing video footage of the scene he had watched.

Asked what school resource officer Scott Peterson should have done, the sheriff said he should have gone into the building, “addressed the killer, killed the killer.”

Mr. Peterson resigned after Sheriff Israel suspended him without pay pending an internal investigation, the sheriff said, speaking at a news conference.

Missouri Governor Taken Into Custody On "Revenge Porn" Allegations

Campaign ad from Gov. Eric Greitens


Republican Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens has been taken into custody after being indicted on charges of felony invasion of privacy.

St. Louis Circuit Attorney Kimberly M. Gardner's office announced today that a grand jury found probable cause to believe Greitens violated a Missouri statute that makes it a felony if a person transmits the image contained in the photograph or film in a manner that allows access to that image via a computer.

From The St. Louis Post-Dispatch:

On Jan. 10, the Post-Dispatch and other area media reported that Greitens, a first-term Republican elected in 2016, had had an extramarital affair near the start of that campaign, in 2015.

The allegation was put forward by the husband of Greitens' lover, based on a surreptitious audio recording he made of a conversation with her.

The woman said in the recording that, during a consensual sexual encounter in Greitens' St. Louis home in which she was bound and partly undressed, Greitens took a photo of her without her consent and threatened her with it.

A former Navy Seal, Greitens won his 2016 election in part by campaigning against “corrupt career politicians.”

Some Republican lawmakers have called for Greitens resignation.


Gus Kenworthy: "Thank You, HRC"

Olympian Gus Kenworthy thanks the Human Rights Campaign for changing and saving LGBT lives.

Out Olympian Gus Kenworthy thanks the Human Rights Campaign in this newly-posted video today.

"I am a huge supporter of the Human Rights Campaign because they're a huge supporter of me.

"It's been an incredible Olympics. We've seen so much change and so much progress and so much visibility for the LGBT community and that's been incredible. And I don't think we'd be anywhere near where we are without all the hard work the Human Rights Campaign has done.

"You guys have changed lives, you've saved lives, and I cannot thank you enough so from the bottom of my heart, thank you HRC."

Please note Gus' low-profile trolling of Donald Trump via his choice of hat ;)

Watch the video below.

News Round-Up: February 22, 2018

Joe Manganiello (via Instagram)

Some news items you might have missed:

• Talk about #ThrowbackThursday - how about 18-year-old Joe Manganiello's first professional headshot (above)? #Woof #Handsome

• The acclaimed revival of Angels In America starring Nathan Lane and Andrew Garfield begins performances at Broadway's Neil Simon Theater tomorrow night. This groundbreaking LGBT-centric play is a "must-see." Use code "World" to get a discount and see this deeply moving theatrical experience.

• Broadway luminaries Norm Lewis and Brandon Victor Dixon will join John Legend and Sara Bareilles for the upcoming TV presentation of Jesus Christ Superstar on Easter Sunday.

• Tara Lipinski and Johnny Weir will share hosting duties with NBC sportscaster Terry Gannon for NBC’s coverage of the closing ceremony of the Winter Olympics on Sunday.

• The Kansas Republican Party has endorsed a resolution that opposes any recognition of the transgender community, while still claiming to respect the “dignity” of LGBT people.

• Platinum selling recording artist BØRNS recently released the new video for "I Don't Want You Back" from his latest album Blue Madonna.

I recently shared his collaboration with Lana Del Rey, "God Save Our Young Blood" here. I like the moody, atmospheric quality he brings to his sonic landscape.

Listen below and let me know what you think.

Meme Of The Day

Robin: "We should arm teachers." Batman: "We should PAY teachers."
(via Facebook)

Highlights: Students, Parents & Teachers Face Off With Marco Rubio And NRA At Gun Violence Town Hall

Fred Guttenberg faces off with Sen. Marco Rubio

Last night's Town Hall hosted by CNN was a rough ride for Sen. Marco Rubio and NRA spokesperson Dana Loesch as they took questions from parents and students regarding the tragic gun massacre that took place last week in Parkland, Florida.

You can listen to and read a full transcript of the Town Hall moderated by CNN's Jake Tapper here.

Just a few highlights:

• Fred Guttenberg, father of Jaime Guttenberg who was killed in the shooting, told Rubio “your comments this week and those of our president have been pathetically weak.”

“Look at me and tell me. Guns were the factor in the hunting of our kids in this school this week,” Guttenberg said. “And look at me and tell me you accept it and you will work with us to do something about guns.”

Rubio later tweeted, "Banning all semi-auto weapons may have been popular with the audience at #CNNTownHall, but it is a position well outside the mainstream."

• Student Cameron Kasky asked Rubio to say he wouldn’t take more money from the NRA. Rubio has received over $3.3 million from the NRA over the course of his political career.

“Can you tell me you won’t take a single donation from the NRA?” Kasky said. “In the name of the 17 people who died, you can’t ask the NRA to keep their money?” Rubio did not answer, saying only “people buy into my agenda.”

• Student Ryan Deitsch asked Rubio why it's fallen to students and young people to take up the cause of gun violence after our lawmakers have dodged the issue for so long.

“We would like to know why do we have to be the ones to do this?” Deitsch asked. “Why do we have to speak out to the [state] Capitol? Why do we have to march on Washington, just to save innocent lives?"

• And the insanely calm and confident Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School student Emma González asked NRA spokesperson Dana Loesch if the NRA supports making it harder to obtain semiautomatic and fully automatic weapons.

“Dana Loesch, I want you to know that we will support your two children in a way that you will not,” said Gonzalez. “The shooter at our school obtained weapons that he used on us legally. Do you think that it should be harder to obtain these semiautomatic and the modifications for these weapons that make them fully automatic like bump stocks?”

#TBT: Greg Laswell "Girls Just Want To Have Fun"

After listening to kenneth-in-the-212's posting of Robert Hazard's version of "Girls Just Want To Have Fun" (which I loved), I'm in inspired to share one of my favorite recordings of the Cyndi Lauper classic.

I love when folks speed up or slow down a well-known track and the reinvention reveals a whole new flavor to the tune.

I found Greg Laswell's melancholy cover of GJWTHF refreshing in it's reflective, pensive approach.

It always slows me down and makes me think.

Listen below. Check out more from Laswell on iTunes.

Former Arkansas Judge Sentenced To 5 Years Prison For Trading Dismissals For Nude Photos

Former Judge O. Joseph Boeckmann
Via CourtHouseNews:

A former Arkansas judge was sentenced Wednesday to five years in federal prison for dismissing minor criminal cases in exchange for nude photographs or sexual favors from male defendants.

O. Joseph Boeckmann, a former district court judge in Cross County, pleaded guilty in October to wire fraud and witness tampering. He admitted on Wednesday that the seven-year-long scheme defrauded cities and counties of money and property they should have received as fines or fees from the people whose cases were fraudulently dismissed.

U.S. District Judge Kristine Baker also fined 72-year-old Boeckmann $50,000 and sentenced him to three years of supervised release after he does his time.

Prosecutors said Boeckmann admitted abusing his judicial position to dismiss traffic citations and misdemeanor criminal charges for young men in exchange for what he claimed was “community service.” He used his access to them during their purported community service to take photographs of them in compromising positions.