The U.S. House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure today opened an inquiry into Carnival Corp.’s handling of the Covid-19 outbreaks that have resulted in more than 1,500 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus aboard its cruise ships, as well as dozens of passenger and crew deaths.
In letters sent Friday to Carnival President and Chief Executive Officer Arnold Donald [photo], the U.S. Coast Guard, and the CDC, Peter DeFazio, the Oregon Democrat who chairs the committee, requested a wide-ranging collection of internal Carnival documents and correspondence related to its outbreak response.
The congressional probe, which cites Bloomberg Businessweek’s recent cover story detailing Carnival’s challenges and delays in addressing the Covid-19 outbreaks, marks a serious turning point for the Florida company.
All cruise lines that operate within the United States kept sending cruises out well into mid to late February with minimal precautions. One cruise in late January included a Royal Caribbean cruise ship Oasis of the Seas which was chartered by Atlantis gay cruise company.
A same-sex family from Florida say they were discriminated against by Southwest Airlines after reportedly being denied access to pre-board as a family.
Grant Morse and his husband were flying from Buffalo, N.Y. to Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. over the weekend with their twin three-year-old boys, five-year-old daughter and Grant’s 83-year-old mother.
As the family of five approached the gate, Morse told WGRZ, a gate agent reportedly stopped them, saying “this is for family boarding only.”
“This gate agent immediately approached my spouse and said this is for family boarding only, and my spouse looked up and said, ‘Well, we are a family. It’s myself, my spouse, and our three children.’ She said it’s family boarding only and got very sarcastic.” said Morse who travels between the New York capital and Florida on Southwest but his family has never experienced anything like this before.
Southwest stated the following, ” typically our employees allow both parents to board,” the spokesperson said. But the airline denied in a statement that discrimination was a factor:
Our Operations Agent informed two parents that another member of their group was ineligible to board under Family Boarding and asked that she board in her assigned boarding group. This conversation in the boarding area had nothing to do with discrimination, we welcomed both parents to board the aircraft with their children. The parents expressed disappointment that the Family Boarding policy was not applicable to another member of their group. The two parents did not agree with our policy, and our Flight Crew worked to save seats together on the aircraft for the family as the conversation continued in the gate area.
Grant Morse said after his family was turned away, a traditional family of a mother, father and toddler were then allowed to board together as a family.
Hilton Hotels Worldwide published a full page ad in the June 2016 issue of Travel + Leisure magazine featuring two men in the same bed — smiling, under the covers and wearing t-shirts. Well this was just too, too much for the anti-LGBT hate group the American Family Association’s puritanical morals to handle and it is now attacking Hilton Hotels and has started a petition to tell them just how “offensive” the depiction of two men together in a “straight” magazine really is.
From the AFA website:
In the June, 2016, issue of Travel and Leisure magazine, Hilton Worldwide shocked readers by placing a full-page ad that featured two men in bed together.
Travel and Leisure isn’t a gay-specific magazine sent directly to homosexual’s homes. It’s a widely distributed mainstream publication that can be found in many public places such as doctors’ or auto repair waiting rooms.
If Hilton had advertised two men playing tennis, cards, or having lunch, that would have been reasonable. However, Hilton chose to make a cultural and social statement by purposely marketing the promotion of homosexuality to a large segment of the population who finds the idea of two men sleeping together unnatural and offensive.
So far, Hilton is defending its decision to promote homosexuality in the magazine and will likely take it further with other forms of mainstream media. Hilton said, “Hilton Worldwide is a global company of diverse cultures serving diverse guests…We are proud to depict and reflect our guest diversity in our advertising…”
Sign our petition to Hilton Worldwide, urging them to market responsibly by advertising in a more family friendly manner when marketing through mainstream media
The AFA had better be careful, their dozens of protesters are getting spread pretty thin.
If you’d like to congratulate Hilton Hotels on their diverse and inclusive advertising give them a shout out on Twitter @HiltonWorldwide or contacting them via their website.
Travel industry legend Arthur Frommer; writer, publisher, consumer advocate, and the founder of the Frommer’s series of travel guides has written a statement condemning Russia’s anti-gay laws, and advising travelers and the tourism industry to take “appropriate action.”
Several gay authors of Frommer travel guides have already informed me that they will no longer risk travel to Russia as long as the “pro-gay propaganda” statute is in effect. Some among them are calling for a broader boycott of all travel to Russia by all Americans, gay or not, as a protest against this denial of human rights. They refer not only to the new legislation, but to several recent incidents of physical assaults by prejudiced young Russians against gay persons, none of which seemed to interest Russian police. And of course, officials and athletes preparing to participate in the winter Olympics are seriously concerned.
In the words of another Frommer author: “The new Russian law is extremely dangerous, borne of dark nationalism, and through its virulent ignorance, the stage is set for a witch hunt. History has shown only too clearly what can happen when a government provides for the systematic silencing and disenfranchisement of an unpopular minority”.
I will be returning to this subject as additional facts are known about the exact position of the Russian government relating to these two new laws. Certainly, the development should cause grave concern among right-minded people interested in the protection of human rights. As most of us have concluded, prejudice against other Americans because of their sexual orientation is un-American and should be condemned. And when such prejudice prevents Americans from traveling without fear in another country, that prejudice should also be condemned, and appropriate action taken by persons in travel and tourism.
The 2012 Spartacus International Gay Guide, an international gay travel guidebook published annually since 1970, originally by John D. Stamford, and currently by Bruno Gmünder Verlag in Berlin, Germany , published its annual Top Gay Friendly Destinations last June (excuse us we are a little behind) and if you are going on vacation you might think twice, well 38 times before vacationing in America as the USA ranked #38 behind countries like Thailand, Cambodia and Croatia thanks to anti-gay laws, a lack of marriage equality, and some unfriendly corners of the Land of the Free and th home of the Religious Morons.
Topping the list was Sweden, which scored points for having anti-discrimination laws, recognition of gay unions, an equal age of consent, travel marketing aimed at gays and no institutional persecution of the LGBT community.
Other top-10 rated nations include Belgium, France, Netherlands, United Kingdom, Canada, Denmark, Iceland, Norway and Spain.
Last year a gay couple Christopher Bridgeman and Martin Borger returned home from a trip from Costa Rica to Virginia. When the couple retrieved their checked bags at the Norfolk airport, they discovered to their horror that a private sex toy (a HUGE pink dildo) had been removed from one of their bags, covered in a greasy foul-smelling substance, and taped prominently to the top of their bag.”
Bridgeman and Borger, filed a lawsuit contending that an unknown Continental Airline worker (or workers) taped the sex toy to the bag, which was spotted by “numerous onlookers” in the baggage claim area. The couple said they were left humiliated and suffering from emotional trauma.
By a U.S. District Court order, Judge Kenneth Hoyt dismissed the lawsuit and ruled that while the “facts underlying this suit are undisputed,” the negligence/invasion of privacy complaint filed by Christopher Bridgeman and Martin Borger is preempted by a treaty covering the handling of baggage on an international flight. (Smuggling latex?)
In answering the couple’s complaint, Continental argued that the matter was a standard “mishandling of baggage” claim, which would not allow the couple to pursue claims for damages. Hoyt sided with the airline
Well we’ve always known that Continental Airlines tries to stick it up your ass if given the chance…. finally some hardcore proof!
Ian Reisner, managing partner Parkview Developers is planning to open what it’s calling New York City’s first gay hotel, THE OUT NYC.
The Out NYC will be located on 42nd Street between 10th and 11th avenues will include a 105-room boutique hotel, 11,000 square foot XL NIGHTCLUB which is being developed by John Blair and Beto Sutter, the men behind creating the Saturday night party at The Roxy., and a café and restaurant called KITCHEN.
THE OUT NYC is expected to open sometime in 2012. The hotel complex, which will also feature a 5,000 square foot wellness center, and will offer various types of function spaces for small parties as well as large events and weddings
As for it being NYC’s first hotel. How soon they forget The Saint Marks Baths.
If you thought the Christopher Street piers in the 70’s and 80’s were crumbling and dangerous to walk check out El Caminito del Rey in Spain
El Caminito del Rey is a walkway or via ferrata, now fallen into disrepair, pinned along the steep walls of a narrow gorge in El Chorro, near Álora in the province of Málaga, Spain
Thewalkway was built in 1901 for the hydroelectric power plants at Chorro Falls and Gaitanejo Falls to cross between the falls, to provide for transport of materials, and for the inspection and maintenance of the channel.
The walkway is one meter (3 feet and 3 inches) in width, and rises over 100 meters (350 feet) above the river below. It is currently in a highly deteriorated state and there are numerous sections where part or all of the concrete top has collapsed away. The result is large open air gaps that are bridged only by narrow steel beams or other support fixtures. Very few of the original handrails exist but a Via ferrata safety-wire runs the length of the path. Several people have lost their lives on the walkway in recent years and after two fatal accidents in 1999 and 2000
Despite the local government closing both entrances thrill seeking hikers still walk the path today.