Monday, September 22, 2014

Laverne Cox Hosts Opening Night of Liaison Nightclub, First Gay Nightclub in a Las Vegas Strip Casino

Nightclub owner Victor Drai and actress Laverne Cox cut the red ribbon at official opening of Liaison Nightclub

One history making original joined another this past Saturday night, as Emmy nominated actress and LGBT advocate Laverne Cox (Orange Is The New Black) hosted the official opening of Liaison Nightclub inside Bally’s Las Vegas – the first gay nightclub in a casino. Cox is the first transgender actress to be nominated for an Emmy Award.

Arriving at Liaison following her iHeart Radio Festival presentation, Cox effortlessly walked the red carpet in a stunning kelly green Stephen Mikhail dress accentuated by an Edie Parker clutch and lavish silver accessories including a neck piece by Haute Hippie and jewelry by Rue Gembon, Lulu Frost and Miriam Salat.

Other talent attending the evening included “Pin Up” star and Playboy’s former Playmate of the Year Claire Sinclair, “Absinthe” performer and “America’s Got Talent” finalist Butterscotch, cast members of the new Las Vegas burlesque revue show “Limelight,” cast from “Tony n’ Tina’s Wedding” and cast from “Legends,” to name a few.

Liaison Nightclub, the game-changing LGBT nightlife venue created by Victor Drai and set on the Las Vegas Strip at Bally’s, is a 7,000 square foot nightclub featuring sexy dark finishes of gold and black.

(All photos by Patrick Gray - Kabik Photo Group)

Laverne Cox joined by Liaison performers 

Liaison Nightclub gogo dancers

Liaison Nightclub located inside Bally's Las Vegas

What Would You Do For Your Own Reality TV Show?


First Weekend Sales of iPhone 6 Top More Than 10 Million


Reuters is reporting that Apple's newest iPhone - iPhone 6 - sold over 10 million units worldwide this past weekend, the first weekend of it's availability.

Last year's iPhone 5S and 5C versions sold 9 million units in it's first week, which included sales in China.  This past weekend's sales did not include China due to regulatory delays.

Police in New Haven, Connecticut report that fights broke out among customers who were apparently trying to buy as many iPhones as possible to resell them at a significant mark-up in China.

New Music: Ricky Martin "Adiós"


Take a listen to Ricky Martin's new single, "Adiós," to be released tomorrow on all digital platforms. 

(Although, to be honest, when you have a promo pic this good, I almost don't need to listen. Just let me stare for a while. Geez, he's good-looking....)

"We chose "Adiós" because it represents who I am today. The title is a reference to the opening of another cycle,” Ricky Martin said of the first single off his anticipated new album, scheduled to be released at the beginning of next year by Sony Music Latin.

A week after the release of "Adiós", Martin will kick off a concert series called "Live In Mexico" with two consecutive concerts at the Palacio De Los Deportes in Mexico City on October 3 and 4. The tour will continue on to Mexico’s main cities including: Guadalajara, Monterrey, Ciudad del Carmen, Puebla, Morelia, among others.

For more about Ricky hit up the official website at rickymartinmusic.com

Louisiana: State Judge Rules Ban on Same-Sex Marriage Unconstitutional


According to KLFY News in Layfayette, Louisiana, a state judge has ruled in favor of marriage equality saying the state's current ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional on the basis that the law violates due process clause of 14th amendment, equal protection clause of 14th amendment, and the full faith and credit clause of the constitution.

From Freedom To Marry:

The case, In Re Costanza and Brewer, was filed in 2013 on behalf of Angela Marie Costanza and Chastity Shanelle Brewer, who are raising their 10-year-old son in Lafayette. The case sought respect for Angela and Chastity's marriage license; since Louisiana did not respect their marriage, one mother was not permitted to legally adopt her son.

The ruling today grants the second-parent adoption and affirms that the Louisiana amendment violates the due process and equal protection clauses of the 14th Amendment.

The ruling today comes just three weeks after U.S. District Judge Martin Feldman became the first federal judge since June 2013 to uphold marriage discrimination, when he ruled in Robicheaux v. Caldwell in favor of marriage discrimination in Louisiana. Judge Rubin's order today is a swift rebuttal of the out-of-step decision in Robicheaux and is another demonstration that America - all of America - is ready for the freedom to marry.

This marks the 40th ruling in support of marriage equality since the SCOTUS ruling in Windsor in June of 2013.

Of course, you can expect today's ruling to be appealed.

Maryland: Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagen Officiates Same-Sex Wedding


Following in the footsteps of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg and retired Justice Sandra Day O'Conner, Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagen has officiated her first same-sex wedding:

From Huffington Post:

Justice Elena Kagan has officiated for the first time at a same-sex wedding, a Maryland ceremony for her former law clerk and his husband.

Kagan presided on Sunday over the wedding of former clerk Mitchell Reich and Patrick Pearsall in the Washington suburb of Chevy Chase, Maryland.

On September 29th, SCOTUS will consider whether to take up (or not) the issue of marriage equality as several appeals have been filed from multiple states.

Pat Robertson Performs Faith-Healing Live on TV

Pat Robertson performs faith healing live on television

Pat Robertson and sidekick Terry read letters from viewers who felt 'healed' by Pat via television faith healing.

They then proceed to 'heal' more viewers like someone who might have back pain. Can you imagine there might be someone watching who has back pain?

No doubt someone will be sending in a big check with a letter thanking Pat for the tele-heal.

To be clear, as regular readers of The Randy Report know, I'm not an opponent of folks being spiritual. But this kind of manipulative hokum harms far more people than it will ever help.



(h/t JMG)

Did Nevada already legally recognize a same-sex marriage?

Click pic to enlarge view

A long-time friend of mine married his terminally ill boyfriend last year.

Since they lived in Las Vegas, they traveled to California for the legal ceremony and license.

Sadly, the husband lost his battle in March of this year.

Adding to the sadness of the loss, my friend had to battle with his deceased husband's family who never approved of the same-sex marriage.  The family apparently fought to keep the body of the deceased from my friend.

Eventually, in order to have a respectful service and burial, my friend went to court to have a judge rule that he was the "surviving spouse," and to indicate that on the death certificate issued by the state of Nevada.

As I saw my friend recently and were talking about the sad episode, I began to wonder: was this the first instance of the state of Nevada recognizing  a same-sex marriage?

We've seen legal wrangling in Ohio, Indiana and Arizona regarding recognition of same-sex marriages from other states due to terminal illness, etc.  I'm wondering if this has already quietly happened in Nevada?

Nevada does have domestic partnerships that grants “…the same rights, protections, benefits, responsibilities, obligations and duties as…parties to any other civil contract….” But, couples legally married in other states don't automatically gain this status. Couples married elsewhere must complete and file a notarized Domestic Partnership Declaration form with the Secretary of State's Office. I asked my friend if they had done this and he said they were in the process of getting that done when his husband suddenly died.

See the death certificate above that lists the deceased as "Male" and the Surviving Spouse as "Michael."  (I've blurred the details for now for privacy's sake).

Experts - chime in and let me know what you think.

GOTHAM begins tonight on Fox TV


Tonight on Fox TV network, the newest imagining of the Batman saga begins with GOTHAM.

With (the future police commissioner) James Gordon as a focus, watch as the childhood stories of Batman, Catwoman, the Penguin, the Joker and more unfold.

Advance reviews have been very strong.  I was a huge fan of SMALLVILLE and am enjoying ARROW, so I'll definitely be checking this out tonight.

Trailer below:

Philadelphia: Gay Bashing Suspects To Be Arrested This Week


According to a source close to the current police investigation of the Center City gay bashing incident, arrests should happen this week and "people are going to get locked up."

As of this morning, police had interviewed 18 possible suspects and witnesses.  One more key person of interest - "the girl in the middle of it all" - will be interviewed today.

The process has been time consuming as police want to make sure they "get it right," and each interview takes at least four hours:

"We've had to schedule with the attorneys for all the different times for them to come in," the source said. "But Monday morning as soon as the stores opened, we started working through the video and then we started the interviews. We want to make sure whoever threw a punch or whoever was part of this assault will be arrested. What happens with cases like this is that, if you rush it and don't do a good job, they'll start throwing out charges later on. These kids all have top-notch attorneys, so if our case isn't put together on our end, they're going to pick it apart. But we've put together a great case for the DA and we'll be working in conjunction with the DA to bring the charges."

“The stories have been pretty consistent so far,” the source said. “It looks like it started by either a bump or words being exchanged, and then punches were thrown. But not everyone in the crowd knew what was going on. People were kind of staggering, and some didn’t seem to realize the extent of the one guy’s injuries.”

“It’s a tragedy for the two guys who were hurt and it’s a tragedy for some of the people in the crowd because the majority weren’t involved,” the source said. “But the guys who were involved are going to pay the price.”

The violent attack has renewed attention on the lack of hate crime laws with respect to crime on LGBT people.

In 2002, the state legislature had added sexual orientation to the hate crime laws, but it was later challenged and repealed on a technicality. State Rep. Brendan Boyle has introduced a bill to amend the current hate crime law to include LGBT citizens.

NYC: Over 300,000 take part in The People's Climate March"


Ahead of this week's United Nations Climate Summit, over 300,000 people from around the world marched through Manhattan to bring awareness to the growing concerns for man's affect on the environment.

Among those attending the march were U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon, former U.S. vice president Al Gore, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, and actors Mark Ruffalo and Leonardo DiCaprio.

The next time someone tells you "no one cares about climate change," show them this picture.

The Men of Chippendales Celebrate 35th Anniversary with Las Vegas Reunion

More than 100 Chippendales alumni and current cast pose on stage at the 35th Anniversary Chippendales celebration 

Ever wonder what happens when sexy, hunky Chippendales get older?

Now we know - like a fine wine, they just get better and better.

This weekend, the most famous male revue in the world, held a 35th Anniversary celebration at the Rio Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, which became a reunion of over 100 former and current Chippendales, including three original Chippendales from the Los Angeles Chippendales club from 1979 (Roger Menache, Richard Barash and Dustin Stevens).

Five alumni joined the current cast onstage for the evening's performance - and it was hard to tell they had ever left the show.

The evening kicked off a year-long celebration of events and projects that will include performances in Europe, Asia, and Australia; as well as a 35-city USA tour (including New York, Chicago, Dallas and San Diego among others) in partnership with LiveNation; and the beginning of production of a Las Vegas based reality show and Alan Ball’s highly anticipated film, “I Am Chippendales,” the true-life, and often scandalous story of how the brand became one of the most famous adult entertainment shows in the world.

All photos by Gabe Ginsberg. Click on a photo to enlarge.

Chippendales alumni on the red carpet (back, L to R), Richard Barash, Dean Mammeles, Roger Menache, Dustin Stevens, Michael Rapp, Dino Manriquez and Tor Kristiansen, (front L to R), Kevin Casper and Terry Lenley

Original cast members from 1979 club in Los Angeles (center, in suits, L to R), Dustin Stevens, Roger Menach and Richard Barash with the current 2014 cast of Chippendales at the 35th Anniversary red carpet at the Rio

Chippendales alumni (L to R) Terry Lenley, Tor Kristiansen, Michael Rapp, Dean Mammeles and Dino Manriquez backstage after the 35th Anniversary performance

Three original 1979 Chippendales cast members (L to R) Richard Barash, Dustin Stevens and Roger Menache backstage after the Chippendales 35th Anniversary performance

Chippendales alumni Tor Kristiansen performs during the 35th anniversary celebration of Chippendales

Chippendales current and youngest cast member, Jon Howes, takes a photo of the decor celebrating past Chippendales in the Flirt Lounge at the Chippendales at the Rio

Chippendales alumni celebrate and reminisce at the 35th Anniversary celebration

Chippendales alumni Tor Kristiansen takes a bow during the 35th Anniversary Chippendales celebration

Photos of past Chippendales performers at the 35th anniversary celebration of Chippendales at the Rio Hotel & Casino

Chippendales 35th Anniversary cake created by Showboy Bakeshop

Marriage News Watch - September 22, 2014


From the American Foundation for Equal Rights: A surprising reveal this week from Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg about the court's plans for taking up a marriage case -- or maybe not taking up any.

An Arkansas clerk breaks ranks with top state officials, declaring for the first time that the state's marriage ban is unconstitutional.

Plus: numerous states freeze their marriage lawsuits while they wait for a Supreme Court ruling.

Alaska: TV News Reporter Quits On-air "F*ck it, I Quit"

KTVA reporter Charlo Greene shows you how to quit your job like a boss.

Via The Independent:

Having grown weary of reporting the news, Green told viewers she would be instead putting all her energy into the fight to legalise marijuana in the state, previously having reported on Alaska Cannabis Club without mentioning her connection to it.

In a jaw-dropping twist to the end of a segment she said: "Now everything you heard is why I, the actual owner of the Alaska Cannabis Club, will be dedicating all of my energy for fighting for freedom and fairness which begins with legalizing marijuana here in Alaska. And as for this job, well, not that I have a choice but, fuck it, I quit."

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Sunday Song: Billy Joel "Summer, Highland Falls"



Billy Joel has shared in interviews that this is his favorite song he ever wrote.

Although never a big hit of his, it's my favorite Billy Joel song.
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