Tag Archives: RISE


NBC “Straight Washes” Main Character In Upcoming Musical Theater Television Drama “RISE”


In NBC’s upcoming drama Rise, inspired by the true story of high-school teacher Lou Volpe, whose story was told in the book Drama High about a high-school production of Spring Awakening, NBC has made a major change by straight-washing Volpe’s lead character from a closeted gay man to a happily married straight family man. 

Producer Jason Katims spoke about the decision at the Television Critics Association press tour, saying they decided to change the character so that the series would better reflect his own experience. “We took [the book] as an inspiration, and then I really felt like I needed to make it my own story,” Katims said. “With Lou’s family life and Lou’s family itself, there’s a lot of reimagination. Not just in terms of gay or straight, but in terms of the family structure.”

 Of course this had nothing to so with having a gay male lead on television during prime-time.

Katims added that despite the straight- washing of the lead character the show does include a trans character and a young closeted character in the main cast. “I was inspired to tell the story of Michael [Ellie Desautels], this transgender character, and Simon [Ted Sutherland] who’s dealing with his sexuality and growing up in a very conservative religious family,” Katims said. “Those stories felt like they resonated with me as a storyteller, I wanted to lean into that.”

Spring Awakening, for those of you who do knot know is a musical about the sexual awakening of a group of students that includes a romance between two male characters.  NBC which originally gained praise for taking on such an ambitious project now with the major change in Volpe’s character from a closeted gay man who is experiencing his own  sexual awakening and who pushed so hard to get Spring Awakening put on in the high school where he taught to a straight family man not only makes the project fall flat but is a cowardly change just for the fear of having a gay male as a lead character.


The Coalition of African American Pastors: “President Obama is a disgrace” For Mentioning Gay Rights At Selma March

Selma Obama March

The Coalition of African American Pastors (CAAP) is incensed that President Obama mentioned President Barack Obama compared the civil rights movement to that gay Americans fighting for equality last Saturday in  “Ask your gay friend if it’s easier to be out and proud in America now than it was 30 years ago,” Obama said at the 50th Anniversary of the Bloody Sunday March.

“President Obama is a disgrace to the black community,” said. Rev. William Owens of the Coalition of African American Pastors (CAAP). “He is rewriting history. We didn’t suffer and die for gay marriage. We marched for opportunity, equality, justice, freedom from oppression. We are the true heirs of the civil rights movement. We have a new movement to reclaim the ‘real’ civil rights movement.”

“The LGBT community hijacked our movement, a movement they know nothing about,” Owens asserted. “President Obama is delusional to compare our struggle with the struggle for marriage equality. Gays have not had fire hoses or dogs unleashed at them. They have not been hung from trees or denied basic human rights.”

“President Obama didn’t march,” Owens continued. “He has benefited from those of us who did march, but for President Obama to say we marched so that gays would have the right to marry today, is a disgrace and a lie.”

CAAP has launched a new initiative called RISE, a grassroots network that unites “people of every race, creed, culture, and background,” to focus on defending faith, family, and justice.  Or in other words RISE unites “hateful homophobes of  every race, creed, culture, and background,” to focus on denying gay people their god given rights under the law.