Sunday, August 18, 2019

Podcast: Chatting With Corey Andrew


Join me as I chat with my Instinct Magazine colleague, Corey Andrew.

In addition to the terrific writing Corey contributes to Instinct, he also has an international music career as an accomplished singer/songwriter and producer with songs that have been streamed over a million times.

Working together, Corey and I realized we have many interests and friends in common having both arrived in New York City at around the same time in the late 1980s. So, our perspective on many topics jives with each other.

Corey Andrew

When I asked Corey to join me for a chat for the podcast, I said I’m going to hit record and we’ll go from there.

Along the way, we touch on how Corey approaches writing, bringing style to his red carpet interviews, his adventures covering World Pride this year in New York City, how music took his talents around the world, plus we chat on our connections to a certain famous Australian, and an Emmy nominated actor from the cast of POSE.

You can find Corey's music on Spotify here.

And make sure you check out his articles for Instinct Magazine here.



InstaHunk Round-Up: Weekend Edition

Ignacio Pรฉrez Rey

Checking in with the Hunks of InstaLand.

First up - a rare photo of hunky Ignacio Pรฉrez Rey NOT on a beach (above).

Next, Matthew Camp shows off his buffed up biceps:




Fitness trainer Austin Martin flexed for the camera while zip-lining through the trees in St. Lucia:




Fitness buff and renaissance man Phillip Evelyn II (Modello9) proves not EVERY photo he takes is too serious:




America's Got Talent alum Brian Justin Crum showed pride in his cactus:



A post shared by BrianJustinCrum (@brianjustincrum) on



America's Next Top Model / Dancing with the Stars champ and Deaf activist Nyle DiMarco deadpans that he "loves when the morning birds sing..."



A post shared by Nyle DiMarco (@nyledimarco) on



'Beef'-y Joel Buck was on the menu at Fire Island:



A post shared by Joel Buck (@joel_buck) on



Handsome sax man Dave Koz is jazzed about headlining tonight's Smooth Summer Jazz concert at the iconic Hollywood Bowl tonight:




Fitness guru Ramses Principe (looking snack AF) is waxing wise today: "Character cannot be develop in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthen, ambition inspired, and success achieved."




And a 'cute but muddy' Max Emerson took a break from biking in Inyo National Forest:



A post shared by Max Emerson (@maxisms) on

Out NY Candidate Targeted With Fake Ad & Suggestive Innuendo

Opponents of an openly gay candidate for Town Justice in upstate New York apparently tried to smear him using a suggestive photo from more than a decade ago and included innuendo regarding his work with YMCA youth.
Justin Carroll (image via Facebook)

Opponents of an openly gay candidate for Town Justice in upstate New York apparently tried to smear him with a fake campaign ad using a suggestive photo from more than a decade ago and included innuendo regarding his work with YMCA youth.

Complete with rainbow letters spelling 'Pride' at the top of the page, the text of the ad stresses Justin Carroll's sexuality, his husband, the possibility of being the first LGBTQ Town Justice in his town of Clinton, New York and more, according to Metro Weekly.

“Justin, a bankruptcy lawyer in NYC, recently relocated to Clinton with his husband Adam Lynch,” the flyer reads. “Among his accomplishments, Justin has been recognized as one of the country’s ‘Best LGBT Lawyers under 40.’ He sits on various boards and committees while working with youth at the YMCA.”

(click image to enlarge)

The text also mentions The Victory Fund, which helps openly LGBTQ candidates get elected to public office and has endorsed Carroll's candidacy. The ad underscores TVF's endorsement and Carroll’s sexual orientation: “Justin will be the first openly LGBTQ elected official for the Town of Clinton.”

The ad also used a photo of Carroll from 2005 when he was a 24-year-old 'cover boy' for Metro Weekly.

Carroll told Metro Weekly he learned of the flyer when it was forwarded to him after it was posted to the Facebook page of the Hudson Valley News.

The news outlet eventually posted a retraction after the editor realized the ad was submitted via a fake email address.



“At first I thought the ad was just kind of laughable how amateurish it was, given the sophisticated nature of my campaign,” Carroll told Metro Weekly. “Second, it was disheartening, to think about that coming from this community where I’ve moved with my husband.”

“We’ve been living here for almost five years. It’s our full-time residence, it’s our only residence,” says Carroll. “We moved up here to raise a family. It reminds us of the places where we grew up, in Connecticut and Oregon. We’ve had the most wonderful interactions with our neighbors over the past five years and are familiar with all the local establishments."

The 37-year-old also noted that the ad seemed "to weaponize my coming out story and things that I’m proud of, but with these nefarious undertones of ‘these people are invading our town and maybe they shouldn’t be left around children.'"

“That’s a disgusting sentiment, and it has no place in our public discourse,” he says.

Jeffrey Epstein Purchased Women's Underwear While In Jail?

The Miami Herald continues its investigative reporting on now-deceased accused sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein.  Today's odd reveal is that during his leisure lock-up time in jail a decade ago, he purchased two pairs of small women's panties from the jail's store?
Jeffrey Epstein (mug shot)

The Miami Herald continues its investigative reporting on now-deceased accused sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein.

Today's odd reveal is that during his leisure lock-up time in jail a decade ago, he purchased two pairs of small women's panties from the jail's store?

Umm...

It was just one of thousands of dollars of purchases made by the disgraced financier while in jail after pleading guilty in 2008 to soliciting a minor for sex, according to a purchase log. (His top purchase was single-serve cups of coffee, of which he bought more than 800 in 13 months.)

But the panties raise questions about why a childless male inmate, accused of sexually abusing girls as young as 14, would be allowed to buy female undergarments so small that they wouldn’t fit an average-sized adult woman.

The panties were certainly too small for Epstein, who also purchased his briefs in men’s medium and sweatshirts ranging from XL to 3XL, and size-12 shoes. So what, or who, were they for, and why wouldn’t the purchase raise eyebrows under the circumstances?


Seaside Town To Install 'Anti-Sex' Public Bathrooms

The town of Porthcawl in Wales plans to spend around $200K (£170,000) to install 'anti-sex' public toilets.
(Credit: Porthcawl Town Council)
The town of Porthcawl in Wales plans to spend around $200K (£170,000) to install 'anti-sex' public toilets.

From The Guardian:

Violent movement sensors would automatically open the doors and sound high-pitched alarms, with fine water jets soaking the interior. Weight-sensitive floors would ensure only one user could be in a cubicle at a time, to safeguard against “inappropriate sexual activity and vandalism”.

Porthcawl town council is spending £170,000 on the futuristic toilets in Griffin Park, according to WalesOnline. The planning documents detail a range of security features to deter rough sleeping, including an audible warning, combined with lights and heating being switched off.

All toilets would be fitted with a full high-pressure floor and wall washer which could be operated after every use, or after a certain number of users per day. Each night the toilets would close for 10 minutes while the unit undertakes a deep clean.

As The Guardian notes, some folks wonder what the baseline weight would be before tripping the alarms and water jets...?





(image via Gerald England is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0)

Saturday, August 17, 2019

'Bachelorette' Alum: Teaching LGBTQ History To Kids Is 'Waste' Of Tax Dollars

James McCoy Taylor (screen captures via Twitter)
A former reality-TV personality took to Twitter recently to explain why he opposes teaching the accomplishments of LGBTQ people in schools.

James McCoy Taylor, who apparently came in 5th in the 12th season of The Bachelorette (2016), recently told his Twitter followers that he finds the idea to be a "waste" of tax dollars.

This was apparently sparked by a new law in Illinois that will require public schools to include the accomplishments of LGBTQ people in history classes beginning with the 2020-21 school year. The legislation was supported by over 40 education and civil rights groups in the state.

Illinois joins California, New Jersey, and Colorado in adding LGBTQ accomplishments to U.S. history studies in public schools.

Contrast that with the six states – Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas – which have laws prohibiting the “promotion of homosexuality.” Often known as “no pro homo” laws, they prohibit schools from teaching LGBTQ topics in a positive light, according to U.S. News and World Report.

Taylor began with a tweet saying instead of history classes being taught about LGBTQ contributions, instructions in stock market investments would be a better use of tax-payer dollars.

And, of course, he prefaced it all by saying his comment wasn’t “from any kind of hate standpoint.”

I'm sure he has black friends, too...





Taylor clapped back at openly gay Walking Dead actor Daniel Newman trying to laugh off the whole thing saying the ‘love is love’ crowd turns into haters when they have a different viewpoint.

What’s funny here is, after saying teaching students about the contributions of LGBTQ people is a “waste of tax dollars” and getting push back, he posted an ‘aw shucks’ video saying, “Twitter, you cannot take my smile…”

Is this where I should mention Taylor is a big Trump supporter? Quel surprise...



Mr. Taylor - if you're going to put your opinions out in the public square, man up and be open to possibly learning something. Disagreement doesn't make someone a 'troll.'

But, Taylor wasn't done with the stupid just yet. He had to come back a few days later with this:



By this flawed logic, with the Jewish population of the U.S. being estimated at between 1.4-1.8%, does that mean we shouldn't teach kids about the Holocaust?

But put that aside.

As TONS of people pointed on on Twitter, the LGBTQ community intersects with all these demographics: women, African-Americans, Hispanic-Americans, Asian-Americans. Race and sex are not sexual orientation. #duh

Also - Taylor says he's 'in Texas.' I don't know if he lives there or visiting...but here's the thing.

I was born and raised in Texas. I graduated from the public school system there in 1981.

In high school, I learned about the fight for women's rights, suffragettes, Seneca Falls, and the 19th Amendment.

I learned about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., the Civil War, the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and Jim Crow laws.

I learned how Latinos helped Texas win independence, who Sylvia Mendez was, and how Puerto Rico became part of the U.S.

I learned about Japanese internment camps during WWII.

So, when Taylor talks about “waiting in line,” does he not know this history has been a part of public schools for decades? I wasn’t only taught about what men contributed to society.

And what exactly is this “line” he talks about? Can we not teach about women’s, African-American, Hispanic-American, Asian-American and LGBTQ American contributions at the same time?

In Illinois, there are 176 days in a given school year. Even if you went by Taylor’s ill-thought ‘5 percent’ math of the LGBTQ population, is it unthinkable to imagine spending less than 9 history classes out of 176 on LGBTQ history?

As a nascent gay growing up in Texas, I’ll tell you what I did NOT learn about in school: how a brave group of LGBTQ people stood up for themselves at the Stonewall riots.

I did not learn that an openly gay man named Harvey Milk was elected to public office in 1977.

Nor did I learn about the persecution of gays by the Nazis during World War II.

There’s a LOT that could have been included in my history curriculum back then.

In any case, I’m not the only one who found Taylor to be out of his depth.

I’ll note that, until these recent LGBTQ-themed tweets, a quick scan of Taylor’s posts on Twitter (when not chiming in on ‘Bachelor/Bachelorette’ episodes) have averaged about 5-10 responses. These tweets received thousands of comments.

I think the hashtag #DeleteYourAccount was created for just this kind of moment.

Just a sample from the Twitterverse:






















And then there's my favorite response:



Billy Porter On Shooting POSE: "I Was Set Free"

Speaking with POSE creator/producer Ryan Murphy at an event in support of the Emmy-nominated series, Billy Porter says he felt "set free" shooting the acclaimed FX series.

Speaking with POSE creator/producer Ryan Murphy at an event in support of the Emmy-nominated series, Billy Porter says he felt "set free" shooting the acclaimed FX series.

Via Deadline:

For Porter, who spent decades struggling as an openly gay black artist, shooting Pose was cathartic.

“The first ball day sticks out really clearly to me because I was doing what I thought my television performance should be. I was trying to play Pray Tell and be smaller, be still, don’t be so crazy.

"[Murphy] walks in and is like, ‘Are you going to give me the sh*t? I need the sh*t. I need you. I need whatever you do,’” he recalled. “I had never said anything to him about it, but he knew instinctively. I was set free on that day, and I never turned back.”

Later in the chat, Porter added he made a conscious decision years ago to choose himself - his "sanity" and "authenticity" - over fame.

“20 years ago, I looked at the landscape, I looked at my life, I looked at what my choices were, and I made the choice to choose myself, choose my sanity over my fame, choose my authenticity over all else, and took every hit that comes with that,” Porter said. “Never did I imagine that I could and would be a first.”