Friday, March 30, 2018

Widow of Pulse shooter acquitted as an accomplice

The widow of Omar Mateen, perp of the Pulse Nightclub attack in June 2016, has been acquitted of all counts of helping her former husband of planning the attack.  Here is the NBC News story

Other media had reported that Mateen had contemplated an attack on a Disney theme park first.

The defense presented her as an abused spouse and (in the NBC story) of low IQ.

Monday, March 26, 2018

New gay streaming service announced in a partnership with an indie distributor

Breaking Glass Pictures and a streaming company named Qreel have partnered to offer monthly streaming service, as explained here.  Many of the films may be produced by NakedSword Film Works.  Some of Naked Sword’s offerings do appear to be patently adult. Some may also be on Pornhub.   I haven't seen the film in the trailer here, but I can imagine what might happen in a frat initiation. 

I could not confirm where Queerly on YouTube and Facebook are the same company.
I’ll note that there are a lot of “soft core” or intimate gay male videos on YouTube from a few companies.  The videos that have music often are mixes that chop from scene to scene and have no continuity; the videos without music generally have a more coherent story and some kind of character confrontation before intimacy starts; these are much better.  It is possible to make an explicit art film with a real plot that is suspenseful, but that means some restraint and a slower pace in the intimate scenes.  “Bugcrush” (2006) is one of my own favorites.  As the late Roger Ebert pointed out, there is nothing wrong with an NC-17 rating for a film that needs to be explicit to really say something original. 

Saturday, March 24, 2018

Trump re-asserts partial ban on transgender in the military, especially for soldiers who have started surgery

Trump issued another order late Friday, allowing the Pentagon to require transgender troops to serve only according to gender of birth.  Trump stated that transgender persons who have undergone transition surgery are normally unfit. 

But the Pentagon can make medical exceptions as it sees fit  Here is the New York Times story
Here is HRC’s statement of “flaming condemnation” (to use a term coined by “dooce”) of the policy. 

Lambda Legal's page on Karnoski v. Trump is here

Update: April 1 

The Washington Blade reports that Mattis has did not fully brief the JCS when Trump's partial transgender ban went into effect.

Update:  April 4

The AMA sent a letter to Mattis, as reported by the Palm Center. 

Friday, March 23, 2018

John Bolton has supported gay marriage, but his position on North Korea could lead to quick war

Trump’s next appointment for National Security Advisor will apparently by John Bolton, to take office April 9.
Bolton is known for previous hawkish  and confrontational positions on Iran and North Korea 
But the Daily Beast reports that Bolton supports gay marriage.  And some Log Cabin groups on Twitter have sometimes supported a hard line on North Korea, even military action, possibly out of offense to the murder of Otto Warmbier.

However Outright International issued a press release considering Bolton a dangerous choice.

Picture is from gun control demonstrations at Capitol March 14.  

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Facebook doesn't allow targeting of ads by sexual orientation; hate group plans to sue California over anti-conversion-therapy law

Facebook, much besieged recently by a data misappropriation scandal in London, has removed the capability to target ads to others by stated sexual orientation, according to this Blade story, by Mariah Cooper. 
I have never targeted any Facebook ads or promotions to specific groups or excluded any persons. 
But Facebook seems to want to make sexual orientation or gender expression a “neutral” issue.
Alex Bollinger of LGBTQ Nation reports that a "Christian legal hate group" plans to sue California on the grounds that state laws banning conversion therapy or their ads are unconstitutional.    This litigation strangely reminds me of the recent law passed in Congress regarding sex trafficking on the Internet. 
By the way, that new federal law (FOSTA-SESTA) could have a major impact on dating sites. I''ve covered it extensively on Wordrpess and on the "BillBoushka" blog.  Trump signed it this morning. 

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Cambridge would spread gay rumors to take down vulnerable political candidates (in certain markets)

LGBTQ Nation reports that the Cambridge Analytica files have evidence of plots to take down political candidates with gay rumors.  This sounds as flippant as my 2005 screenplay "The Sub".  The centerpiece is "gay vegan" who made Steve Bannon's "tool".  Will Milo Yiannopoulos interview him on the Milo Show? 

Also was plenty of use of spies and honeypots. 
It’s curious: it didn’t matter if something was true, only if it was believed, or specifically if a certain voter base believed it.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Westboro Baptist Church protests an outed gay football player at a St. Louis area prep school, and students counter-protest

Students at a prep school in Ladue, MO counterprotested the Westboro Baptist Church which demonstrated the school’s acceptance of a gay football player.
I was not aware that the remnant of Westboro still demonstrates, and targeting a specific teen at a school seems pretty low.
John Riley reports for Metro Weekly.

If a hate group claims "God hates America", it can't be for Trump. 
Ladue is an inner suburb of St. Louis.  One thinks of the Ferguson protests. 

Monday, March 19, 2018

Pompeo's appointment to State Department seems worse than Tillerson from LGBT perpsective

LGBT groups are fuming at Trump’s appointment of CIA Director Mike Pompeo as Secretary of State after he fired Rex Tillerson on Twitter last Tuesday, as Samantha Allen reported in the Daily Beast.

GLAAD has a long offense list .
Pompeo was sharply critical of the Supreme Court’s decisions on same sex marriage in 2015.
Activists rightly fear that Pompeo will, at least, overlook gross abuses of LGBT people overseas, which seem to have accelerated the most in sunSaharan Africa, under the influence of American “evangelicals”, as DC Center Global explained Saturday on a public forum for helping asylum seekers. The forum also discussed the worsening of conditins in Russia, which has slowed now but was rock bottom around 2015-2016 after Russia intervened in Ukraine and even Syria.  Chechnya, where the Boston Marathon bombers had come from, is also very significant.
There is a possibility that American public resentment over the Russian 2013 anti-gay propaganda law could even worsen tensions between the US and Russia, given the coverage not only in the gay press but in social media and blogs.  I would wonder what would happen were I to try to visit Russia now. 
Michael Lavers story in the Washington Blade March 16 front page was not yet online. 
Gina Haspel’s appointment to the CIA is also controversial, over the torture issue (Post story )   Haspel also ran a black site (Buzzfeed story) . The media has not said anything about Haspel and LGBT employees, but the CIA started accepting openly gay employees in 1996.  But in one situation, a trans sailor who was discharged was allowed to keep the same job as a civilian in Naval Intelligence back n 1993, just as Clinton’s plan to lift the military (not trans) ban was getting debated.
No one expects a mood like it was in the State Department in the pre-Stonewall days as in the 1967 Mile Wallace episode on CBS, "The Homosexuals" where Melvin Laird boasted about discharging homosexuals when he found them. 

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Gay parents start expecting equality in the workplace, as to paid family leave; the Mombian blog

Erin Uritus, of “Out and Equal” has worked on equal workplace conditions for LGBT parents, as with issues like paid family leave, where adoption is likely to need the same recognition as biological maternity. The group’s site is here
She also runs a site for lesbian mothers, Mombian. 

The Washington Blade has an article by Dana Rudolph on p. 24 of the March 16, 2018 issue, but curiously it is not online yet.

 Trump has supported paid maternity leave, but I'm not sure about broader family leave. 

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Russia has the ability to suppress international media in presenting gay people -- supposedly to protect its own birth rate

Russia is acting like it wants the power to control what big media companies can disseminate internationally, as it threatens to block Ireland’s Eurovision entry if it shows same-sex dancing, Pink News story.
It’s apparent that in some parts of the world, governments promote the idea that gay values are counter to their own national ethnic identity, probably because gay values are seen as discouraging having more children.
A New Yorker article by David Remnick from December 2013 seems relevant.

Friday, March 09, 2018

Activists report that HIV is increasingly a black disease

I got an email from Don Kilhefner advising me of a HuffPost article, “AIDS in America is a Black Disease”, link
I’m not too sympathetic with promoting intersectionality, but it has been true since the 1990s at least that HIV infection is spreading proportionally more rapidly among African Americans and more by iv drug use than it was in the 1980s.
What’s unclear is how safe the familiar cis male gay community in big city discos, largely white, is doing as to HIV infection.  Many people behave more cautiously than they did in the early 1980s.  It isn’t something you hear about a lot.  And it’s unclear how PrEP would get paid for in any “GOP” Obamacare reform. 

Thursday, March 01, 2018

Bizarre anti-gay marriage law proposed in S.C.

Electronic Frontier Foundation reports on a bizarre bill in South Carolina called a “parody marriage” bill which claims that same-sex marriages are non-secular.  The filer apparently claims he will marry his computer (or maybe marry an A.I. robot from the movies).
The Charleston City Paper has a story
The logic of the bill is so convoluted it is impossible to restate.  Read it at your own risk.