Everyone has heard about this weeks HomoCON fundraiser held for the very anti-gay and despicable Sen. Ted Cruz by Mati Weiderpass and Ian Reisner , longtime business partners who were once a couple and who have been pioneers in the gay hospitality industry.
Reisner, the owner of the OUT NYC hotel and nightclub complex near Times Square is where Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDSwas to hold its annual fundraiser.
I say WAS because after BC/EFA heard about thew fundraiser for Cruz and the uproar afterwards they have cancelled the upcoming May 1oth. performance.
From the Facebook page of Broadway Cares, Executive Director Tom Viola:
It is with regret that this year’s edition of the Broadway Bares SOLO STRIPS which was scheduled for May 10 at the OUT NYC Hotel’s 42West Club is cancelled.
I don’t know if you are aware of the controversy that has erupted around the recent New York Times article that reported on a small reception for Senator Ted Cruz as he begins his campaign for the Republican nomination for President, that was… attended by the owner of the OUT NYC Hotel/42West and hosted by his former partner.
I have never considered that all of our many supporters would ever vote monolithically, nor is there a political litmus test for any one of us. Those are personal decisions each of us makes based, I hope, on our passions and concerns for ourselves as individuals as well as the communities in which we live and with whom we are clearly identified and closely associated.
But when any politician publicly holds so many of us in contempt and promotes the institution of law and public policy that condemns or diminishes all that BC/EFA stands for, full equality for all and the very people who we are committed to embrace, we cannot be misunderstood as standing with him/her. And unfortunately, silence, or in this case inaction, is not a neutral position.
This is not about partisan politics or punishment. This is about doing what’s right to ultimately ensure that BC/EFA’s commitment to the men, women and children we serve cannot be questioned.
If you have purchased tickets for SOLO STRIPS, please visit the BC/EFA website for a full refund. If you do not require a refund, I promise that your donation will be put to good use in our next grant round in July to support the essential work of AIDS and family service organizations in all 50 states, committed to helping those most disenfranchised by people in power who actively work to restrict and deny equal rights to all.
BRAVO and BRAVA to Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS!
Integrity is such an important thing in the LGBT community and lately is so lacking (*cough* HRC *cough*) it is so good to see an organization that actually has it.
NOTE:Broadway Bares 25 will take place as scheduled at the Hammerstein Ballroom on June 24th. Get tickets here.
I travel a lot – this month I was in fifteen cities in as many days. I always like to learn a little bit about the place I’m going to play – that Chicago has the fourth largest GDP of any world city, or that Louisville is famous for a sandwich known as the “Hot Brown.”
Today I was Grantham, Pennsylvania, at Messiah College, and as I was doing a little digging about the place I learned something that surprised and disappointed me.
Messiah College requires all students to sign a “Community Covenant” promising to, among other things, “avoid such sinful practices as…homosexual behavior….”
This policy, which I see as exclusionary and bigoted, could not run more counter to my personal beliefs. If I had done my homework, and read about Messiah’s policies ahead of time, I would never have agreed to play there.
I did play at Messiah College tonight, and I chose to use the opportunity to talk to the students – to encourage them to seek openness and change. I spoke honestly about my personal views – that we should all have the right to love – and to marry freely, no matter what our sexual orientation.
Everyone was respectful and kind, and it is my hope that they’ll continue to demand a change to the Community Covenant.
I hope to have made the best of a difficult situation. I’m donating the fee I received from Messiah College tonight in its entirety to The Trevor Project (thetrevorproject.org), the leading national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning youth.
I won’t play Messiah College again – not until they welcome, in word and deed, all members of their faith regardless of sexuality, and I urge my fellow musicians to do the same.
– Josh Ritter
I applaud Ritter for his handeling of this.. This is the perfect way to show up these bigots. Honour your agreement, state your disgust of their policies and beliefs, and then have none of their blood money and donate it to whats exactly opposite of thier hateful warped teachings.
The backlash continues against SF Pride as Britain’s best know human rights and LGBT social movement advocate and activist Peter Thatchell among others has responded to San Francisco Pride’s Executive Director Lisa William’s statement released on Friday about the “mistake” of appointing PFC Bradley Manning as Honorary Grand Pride Marshall at its 2013 Pride festivities.
San Francisco Pride has revoked the nomination of gay rights advocate & military whistleblower Private Bradley Manning as Grand Marshal of this year’s Pride parade. SF Pride leaders are wrong on facts, ethics & politics. Bradley revealed US war crimes & cover ups.
Manning is a hero – a defender of democracy and human rights, based on the principle that citizens have a right to know what the government is doing in their name. Bradley should not be in prison. The charges should be dropped. Set him free. Instead, put on trial those US soldiers who killed innocent civilians and those who protected the perpetrators.
Bradley Manning is a true patriot, not a traitor. Bradley reveres the founding ideals of the US – the ideal of an open, honest government accountable to the people, that pursues its policies by lawful means and respects human rights.
At great personal risk, Manning sought to expose grave crimes that were perpetrated and then hidden by the US government and military. These are the characteristics of a man of conscience, motivated by altruism. There is no evidence that his leaks harmed anyone. Thanks to Manning, we, the people, know the truth.
Bradley Manning acted in the spirit of the gay liberation pioneers. Make Bradley Grand Marshal of San Francisco Pride.”
Director, Peter Tatchell Foundation
SF Pride’s Executive Director’s Lisa Williams statement on Friday removing Manning as honorary Pride Grand Marshall in reality has caused even a bigger backlash against the organization due to Williams outrageous handling of it in which she not only blamed a lowly SF Pride staffer but also personalised her highly negative feelings while admitting that the committee of former San Francisco Pride grand marshals who makes the decision of who will be Pride Marshall’s did indeed select the 25-year-old Manning, who is openly gay, for the honor, but the Pride Board decided his choice would be a mistake (after grumblings from a handful od politically connected LGBT military advocates, Gay Inc. and corporate sponsors)
Bradley Manning will not be a grand marshal in this year’s San Francisco Pride celebration…..that was an error and that person has been disciplined…….a mistake and should never have been allowed to happen.….will not be tolerated…..a systemic failure that now has become apparent and will be rectified. SF Priderepudiates this vote. Bradley Manning….will not serve as an official participant in the SF Pride Parade.
Bradley Manning is facing the military justice system of this country. We all await the decision of that system. However, until that time, even the hint of support for actions which placed in harms way the lives of our men and women in uniform — and countless others, military and civilian alike — will not be tolerated by the leadership of San Francisco Pride. It is, and would be, an insult to every one, gay and straight, who has ever served in the military of this country.
As Kevin Gosztola of Fire Dog Lake is quick to point out Williams did not simply go through the motions and make a statement clarifying he would not be honored like military factions of the LGBT community wanted. She herself put forth a robust condemnation of Manning fueled by her own perceptions. Gostola also reveals that the bio for Williams on the SF Pride page shows she works for a “political consulting and community advocacy” group that serves Democratic Party politics and that she “organized satellite offices for the Obama campaign.” She also is the PAC chair of the Bayard Rustin LGBT Coalition.
Scott Long at his blog on sex, rights and the world called “Paper Bird” highlights the irony that a person who chairs a coalition that is supposed to celebrate Rustin is fueling the vilification of Manning.
Rustin, if you remember, was one of the great figures of 20th-century America: a pacifist, a war resister, an icon of civil disobedience, and the key organizer of the 1963 March on Washington. (Also a gay man). Rustin spent three years in Lewisburg Penitentiary as a conscientious objector during the Second World War. The quote (slightly tweaked) came from a citizen of West Chester, PA, back in 2002, who objected to naming a school after Bayard Rustin. After all, the traitor broke US law, encouraged others to do likewise, and opposed the military and domestic policies of the United States.
The list of SF Pride sponsors also includes Bank of America, now being sued for $1 billion by the US government for allegedly engaging in a systematic scheme of mortgage fraud which the US Attorney called “spectacularly brazen in scope”.
Another beloved SF Pride sponsor, Wells Fargo, is also being “sued by the US for hundreds of millions of dollars in damages over claims the bank made reckless mortgage loans that caused losses for a federal insurance program when they defaulted”. Last year, Wells Fargo was fined $3.1 million by a federal judge for engaging in conduct that court called “highly reprehensible” relating to its persecution of a struggling homeowner.
Also in Good Standing with the SF Pride board: Clear Channel, the media outlet owned by Bain Capital that broadcasts the radio programs of Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and Glenn Beck.
So apparently, the very high-minded ethical standards of Lisa L Williams and the SF Pride Board apply only to young Army Privates who engage in an act of conscience against the US war machine.
Weather Manning was a good choice or a bad choice that is besides the point now. Whats now become the focus now is not only the issue of integrity and double standards on SF Prides part but also on the leaders of the LGBT community whose fear of upsetting the connected few and the political machine is nuetering and silencing community from speaking out freely making statements while they take millions from corporations that have hurt us and the American people.
Is this the price we will have to pay for our equality?
But in the end the better question is if this really the way we want to achieve it.
“The President believes the Boy Scouts is a valuable organization that has helped educate and build character in American boys for more than a century,” White House spokesperson Shin Inouye said in the statement. “He also opposes discrimination in all forms, and as such opposes this policy that discriminates on basis of sexual orientation.”
In a follow-up email, Inouye said Obama won’t resign or relinquish his position as honorary president of the Boy Scouts as result of this position.
“The Boy Scouts of America respects the opinions of President Obama and appreciates his recognition that Scouting is a valuable organization,” Smith said. “We believe that good people can personally disagree on this topic and still work together to accomplish the common good.”
Said GLAAD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation) President Herndon Graddick responded to the Obama statement:
“Our nation’s leaders from across religions and political persuasions have joined hundreds of thousands of Americans in speaking out against the blatant discrimination that the Boy Scouts of America teaches young adults today. It’s clear that this outdated policy will be changing in the future. How long will the Boy Scouts continue to bully young gay Americans into hiding who they are and hurt children of gay parents by denying their parents an opportunity to participate in their children’s lives?”
One really has to wonder why GLAAD’s President Graddick who heads an organization which promotes the image of LGBT people in the media can so readily issue a press release about discrimination in the Boy Scouts but was eerily silent during the whole Chick-fil-A media disaster while his organization ran the wrong message of same-sex marriage instead of the groups hate group donations.
It’s truly disappointing that the White House couldn’t say something more on point instead using the Obama “opposes discrimination in all forms” meme to cover this issue to try to make some points with the LGBT community,
And whats even more disappointing is that Obama will not show integrity even on this issue and prove his full support by relinquishing his position as honorary president of the Boy Scouts. Would Obama still not resign if the BSA refused admittance to boys and leaders who were Jewish or Black?
President Obama may be the best LGBT ally that we’ve ever had in the White House, and may not be able to wave a magic wand with DOMA and ENDA . But he could make a stronger, more pointed statement where the BSA is concerned and take a poweful syand against discrimination against the LGBT community and back up his words with actions.
Honoring Goldman Sachs and using Blankfein just proves the further disconnect between the HRC and the LGBT Community and PROVES that HRC is nothing more than a business itself and has absolutely NO INTEGRITY.
Goldman Sachs is the top contributor and explicitly supports Mitt Romney, the likely Republican nominee, who stands firmly opposed to civil rights equality for the GLBT community, in particular, gay marriage and using Blanlfein as a spokesman who is a known perjurer who by all rights should be in jail for lying before the Levin Committee about Goldman Sachs misleading clients securities so the firm would benefit if they fell in value thus helping lead this country to the brink of financial collapse just proves how out of touch and just how much contempt that the HRC has for the non-elite LGBT community.
When the institutions that can cause an international economic collapse are now on your side, and your prganizarions use them to represent you, I guess you know you’re finally mainstream
HRC is a business, nothing more, nothing less and is more concerned with money than Equality, Dignity and Integrity and should be shunned, boycotted, and protested for that reason alone.
While many of us still refuse to set foot one foot inside a TARGET Store and Lady Gaga refuses to sell her wares there it seems that many Pride Organizations in the USA have very little reason to be proud after accepting sponsorship donations from retail giant itself while local Target stores are sponsoring a number of smaller festivals so they’d have enough balloons and booze for their 2011 Pride soiree’s
New York City, Minnesota Twin Cities, and Seattle Pride ALL received money from the TARGET and show very little regret at doing so.
TARGET which is based in Minneapolis Minnesota has always been of their Pride Festivities and Because of Twin Cities Pride’s 501(c)(3) tax status, the organization cannot openly criticize Target or formally join a boycott of the company (but they could refuse the money) and Seattle Pride Board Director Adam Rosencrantz issued just a one sentence statement about TARGETS sponsorship. “We are glad to see major corporations sponsor events that bring people together in Pride,”
We, as a community NEED to show integrity, and truthfully that has been lacking greatly for many years now. From GLAAD’s involvement with AT&T to accepting money from questionable corporations which many are boycotting just because they are handing it out and we want more floats and go-go boys at a parade.
Without integrity nothing works.
How in the world will we ever gain the respect of others when when obviously as a community we do not respect ourselves.
One of the biggest problems that the LGBT community has as a community is the lack of integrity with our major “advocate” organizations. HRC, The Task Force and GLAAD all worship the almighty dollar over the whats right and whats wrong when it comes to advancement that they not only tarnish themselves, but also tarnish us because there are those of us out there who give them a free pass just because they “gay”.
No further proof is needed than today’s news that GLAAD (The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation ) has used it and the LGBT communities name in a strongly worded letter to the FCC in support of the AT&T-T-Mobile merger trying to justify it somehow with an off the wall “social justice” argument coming just ONE WEEK AFTER the State of Tennessee put into law a harmful piece of anti-LGBT legislation that not only repeals what little LGBT protections that are on the books in Tennessee towns and cities, but also STOPS any city to put any anti-LGBT discrimination laws on the book. And who exactly helped get this law through legislature? A representative of AT&T.
But here one week later we have GLAAD not only supporting AT&T but stepping way beyond it’s bounds in doing so. And the reason…..
AT&T in the past has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to GLAAD in money over the years, so GLAAD honors AT&T with the “Corporate Leader Award” at one of its many wasteful GLAAD Media Awards (Which AT&T underwrites btw) , turns a blind eye to the damage that it caused many LGBT brothers and sisters in Tennessee, and then then continues to pander to AT&T so they keep giving GLAAD the money to pay Jarrett Barrio’s ridiculous$350,000.00 a year salary , and only exceeds in throwing parties and damaging the integrity of our community as a whole.
Enough is enough.
I don’t want myself, my rights, or my equality represented by any organization that cares more about money than it does the members of its own community.
I call for not only Jarret Barrios to resign, but for the entire Board of Directors to resign and the organization to either cease to exist or be overhauled to such an extent that we can once again put our faith into them.
TARGET Corp who gave $150K to MN Forward/ anti-gay Tom Emmer– then 5 days later apologized for it promising to be more careful in the future – then proceeded – after that so-called apology – to give another $30K to some of the most rabidly anti-gay candidates ever both in and outside of Minnesota in the 2010 election cycle. Is letting its employees know that it embraces us gays and that Gay Inc embraces TARGET as pictured above in the Target Employee newsletter (that has
National Gay and Lesbian Task Force logo on the bottom)
Target participated in the NGLTF (Now only The Task Force they dropped the “Gay” and “Lesbian”.) 23rd annual “Creating Change” conference in February which really creates no change at all but does make “The Task Force” look like it’s actually doping something and a a nice chunk of money which I am sure that Target donated some $$$ into because why else in Harvey Milks holy name would “The Task Force” even allow TARGET to attend and participate?
Gay Inc and greed and lack of integrity go hand in hand it seems especially where TARGET in concerned.
Above we have The Task Force, earlier this month we had GLAAD who gave Ricky Martin the “The Vito Russo Award” at it’s latest round of Media Awards for being a gay role model even though Martin signed an exclusive distribution contract with TARGET a month earlier for his new album. And the HRC who after Target’s donation to anti-gay Tom Emmer became public tried to get Target to donate a matching sum of money to a “pro-gay” organization to make up for it, namely them, which TARGET didn’t.
Until our LGBT Organizations drop the greed, move out of their multi-million dollar offices and gain some self-respect and integrity and fight for our rights because of a passion to do so and not a nice fat paycheck will we get anywhere.
MoveOn.org had purchased a week of airtime in Minneapolis and nationally on MSNBC and Tten Parent MSNBC pulled the ad “because the ad is a direct attack on an individual business.’ While in fact, the ad referenced ‘Target and other corporations.
I am sure that NBC’s decison has nothing to do with th fact that TARGET spends MILLIONS of dollars a year in advertising on its stations. Besides NBC’s commercial time is all filled up with BP propaganda commercials.
Way to show Integrity NBC! Maybe Rachel maddow and Keith Obermnan should do a story on this?