Saturday, March 01, 2008

McCain Gladly Accepts Endorsement of Gay-Hating Anti-Catholic

While calls are going out from many quarters - including from National review - for John McCain to repudiate the endorsement he received from Rev. John C. Hagee, pastor of the evangelical Cornerstone Church mega-church, if he does so, he is in effect repudianting the mind set of what has become the cornerstone of today's GOP. Anyone who knows about Rev. Hagee knows that he's - in my opinion at least - a fucking lunatic. Here's a few highlights from the New York Times ( just who and what McCain is embracing in his effort to painder to the Christianist base of the GOP:
Mr. Hagee, who argues that the United States must join Israel in a preemptive, biblically prophesized military strike against Iran that will lead to the second coming of Christ, praised Mr. McCain for his pro-Israel views. Asked about Mr. Hagee’s extensive writings on Armageddon and about what one questioner said was Mr. Hagee’s belief that the anti-Christ will be the head of the European Union, Mr. McCain responded that “all I can tell you is that I am very proud to have Pastor John Hagee’s support.'’
The fact that people like Hagee now dominate the GOP is one of the principal reasons I left the Republican Party a number of years ago. He/they is/are ltittle better than the Taliabn when it comes to being complete hate-filled. Here's yet more on Hagee from the Huffington Post (
Hagee was, if you'll remember, the guy who said that Hurricaine Katrina was God's revenge for a gay pride parade. He thinks war with Iran is essential so as to bring about Armageddon (when you can say bye-bye to the Jews). But as Glenn Greenwald says, he's a white Christian evangelical bigot, and therefore entitled to respect from the pundit class:

[W]hite evangelical Ministers are free to advocate American wars based on Biblical mandates, rant hatefully against Islam, and argue that natural disasters occur because God hates gay people. They are still fit for good company, an important and cherished part of our mainstream American political system. The entire GOP establishment is permitted actively to lavish them with praise and court their support without the slightest backlash or controversy. Both George Bush and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert sent formal greetings to the 2006 gathering of Hagee's group.

By contrast, black Muslim ministers like Farrakhan, or even black Christian ministers like Rev. Jeremiah Wright, are held with deep suspicion, even contempt. McCain is free to hug and praise the Rev. Hagees of the world, but Obama is required to prove over and over and over and over that he does not share the more extreme views of black Ministers.

How come Tim Russert -- in all the times he sits and chats with Lieberman, McCain and various high Bush officials -- never reads all of the inflammatory, disgusting, crazed "Rapture-is-Coming/ All-Jews-will-Burn/ Kill-All-Muslims/ Hurricanes-are-Punishment-against-Gays" pronouncements from John Hagee and James Dobson and Pat Robertson and demand that John McCain and George Bush and Joe Lieberman "denounce" those views and "reject" their support? What's the difference, exactly?
Enter...Bill Donahue. Yes, Mr. Catholic League/Chocolate Jesus himself, who is (justifiably) miffed that Hagee refers to Catholics as "'The Great Whore,' an 'apostate church,' the 'anti-Christ,' and a 'false cult system.' Glenn Greenwald interviewed him yesterday:

Donohue was particularly insistent that McCain's behavior would severely harm his standing with Catholic voters -- the group of voters which Karl Rove maintains is the key group for enabling the GOP to win: "This thing seems to be to be blowing up in his face. McCain has stepped in it big time."

It's significant that this is not a partisan issue, both sides of the political spectrum are in agreement that McCain should be forced to account for this. Even the National Review is applauding Glenn Greenwald's efforts on this front.

Gay Relationships: The Abusive Partner

Thanks to a heads up by my friend Vanyel over at If You Could Read My Mind, I saw an great post over at GayTwogether ( looking at abusive same sex relationships. The information is both on point and something that gays need to be aware of. Abuse in relationships is not limited to straight men abusing their wives. It happens in our community too - I know from personal experience - and is not something that can ever be excused. No one should have to live in fear and if that is a major aspect of your relationship, the only safe thing to do is end it. It will not be easy, but you deserve better and truly have no other choice. I recommend a read of the full post, but here are some highlights:
No one deserves to be abused! Abuse can be physical, sexual, emotional, psychological, and involve verbal behavior used to coerce, threaten or humiliate. The purpose of the abuse is to maintain control and power over one's partner. The abused partner feels alone, isolated and afraid, and is usually convinced that the abuse is somehow his fault, or could have been avoided if he knew what to do.


Physical Abuse
- hitting; choking; slapping; burning; shoving; using a weapon; physically restraining; intentional interference with basic needs (e.g. food, medicine, sleep)

Isolation: Restricting Freedom - controlling contacts with friends and family, access to information and participation in groups or organizations; locking up in a room / restricting mobility; monitoring telephone calls

Psychological & Emotional Abuse - constantly criticizing, ridiculing (self, family, friends, past); trying to humiliate or degrade; lying; undermining self-esteem; misleading someone about the norms and values of the gay/lesbian communities in order to control or exploit them

Stalking / Harassing Behavior - following; turning up at workplace or house; parking outside; repeated phone calls or mail to victim and/or family, friends, colleagues

Threats & Intimidation - threatening to harm partner, self or others (children, family, friends, pets); threatening to make reports to authorities that jeopardize child custody, immigration or legal status; threatening to disclose HIV status, threatening to reveal sexual orientation to family, friends, neighbors, and/or employers

Economic Abuse - controlling or stealing money; fostering dependency; making financial decisions without asking or telling partner

Sexual Abuse/Harassment - forcing sex or specific acts, pressuring into unwanted sexual behavior, criticizing performance.
Abuse is always the responsibility of the abuser and is always a choice.

Victims are often blamed for the abuse by partners, and sometimes even family, friends and professionals can excuse or minimize the abusive behavior.

It is difficult for victims to leave abusive relationships.

Abuse is not an acceptable or healthy way to solve difficulties in relationships, regardless of orientation.

Victims feels responsible for their partner's violence and their partner's emotional state, hoping to prevent further violence.

Abuse usually worsens over time.

The abuser is often apologetic after abusing, giving false hope that the abuse will stop.

Some or all of the following effects of abuse may be present: shame, self-blame, physical injuries, short and long-term health problems, sleep disturbances, constantly on guard, social withdrawal, lack of confidence, low self-esteem, anxiety, depression, feelings of hopelessness, shock, and dissociative states.

Recognize that you are not responsible for the abuse.

Recognize that violence/abuse is not likely to stop on its own - episodes of violence usually become more frequent and more severe.

It is important to break the silence. Try to tell someone who will believe you.

Seek professional help from a qualified counselor who is knowledgeable about partner abuse and is gay positive. A gay male counselor with the above qualities may help you address the pertinent issues of abuse with more comfort and focus.

Only you can decide what to do about your relationship - whether to stay or leave is your decision. However, it is important to develop a safety plan in case your safety is in jeopardy such as:
a safe place to stay;
emergency phone numbers;
some money;
your own bank account;
post office box; and
bag of essentials.

Stop being abusive. Stop using abuse of any form (physical, sexual, verbal or emotional), including threats and intimidation.

Accept responsibility for your behavior. Remember that the use of violence in any form is always a choice that you make.

Do not make excuses for your violence or blame your partner for your abusive behavior.

Recognize that assaultive behavior is unacceptable and is a criminal act.

Seek professional help from a qualified counselor who is knowledgeable about partner abuse and is gay positive. A gay male counselor may help you address the pertinent issues of abuse with more comfort and focus.

Alcohol, drug use or mental health problems are not excuses for abusive behavior. Seek appropriate help for these problems.

More Saturday Male Beauty

Barack Obama - Selling Gay Rights

Here is an interesting report from Politico ( concerning remarks made by Barak Obama at a rally in Beaumont, Texas - hardly a hotbed of liberalism - this week:

Obama's rally in Beaumont today was the highest-energy of this Texas swing, with a crowd that was about three-quarters black cheering at almost every turn.

An interesting moment came when he was asked a question about LGBT rights and delivered an answer that seemed to suit the questioner, listing the various attributes — race, gender, etc. — that shouldn't trigger discrimination, to successive cheers. When he came to saying that gays and lesbians deserve equality, though, the crowd fell silent. So he took a different tack: "Now I’m a Christian, and I praise Jesus every Sunday," he said, to a sudden wave of noisy applause and cheers.

"I hear people saying things that I don’t think are very Christian with respect to people who are gay and lesbian," he said, and the crowd seemed to come along with him this time.

The moment reminded me of a conversation I had recently with a senior figure in the national gay rights movement, who noted that Obama's deference to some black Christian discomfort with homosexuality — his refusal to dump the "ex-gay" gospel singer Donnie McClurkin from a tour — angered some gays and lesbians; but conversely, that his ability to sell gay rights in the black church is unique and appealing.

I'm still waiting for Hillary to make such bold public statements in favor of agy equality except to selective gay audiences. If she will not do it durning the primary campaign, I do not see why gays think she'll support us if elected to office.

Thoughts of My Sister

I’m not sure what triggered it, but I had repeated dreams last night about my sister who died in 2001. Perhaps it was because a dear friend is struggling with the lost of his mother. Maybe it was from talking about my coming out saga with a female reader of this blog that I met through the Second Saturday Salon in January. In any event, I woke up this morning still thinking about my sister. Ironically, she is the only one of my siblings that never got to know who I really was as a gay man - even though her death played a large role consciously and I suspect subconsciously in leading me to make the final decision to come out as opposed to killing myself as I contemplated frequently.

As long time readers know, it was an unplanned, unsought same sex physical encounter in 1999 that forced me to have to face the truth about my sexual orientation. However, it was another two agonizing years before I ultimately came out to my former wife. In some ways, but for my sister’s untimely death in April, 2001 – April 12, 2001 at around 1:00 PM to be exact – that after some months of internal debate and despair broke the dam of hesitation, fear and immobilization that had plagued me since September of 1999, I might have remained in the closet or had a “surfing accident” that would have led to me drowning. My sister was a remarkable person – extremely smart, very pretty, a cheerleader and outstanding athlete in high school, honor graduate from college, one who expected nothing less than perfection from herself, and an amazing dedicated mother to her two children. After earning a Masters Degree in Chemistry, she went on to be chemist for the Navy and did complex analysis of metals and post crash investigative work, based first in this area and later in Florida. Unfortunately, she was in what we later discovered to have been an unhappy marriage that she stayed in until her husband left her. I believe she did it for what she thought was the sake of her children. In addition, having been raised fairly conservative Catholic - I suspect she believed that she had to stay married due to the dictates of the Church. Like me, she was one to do what was expected and lived most all of her life for the needs and/or expectations of others.

Career wise she was definitely coming into her own and making a new start after her divorce when she received a terminal diagnosis of lung cancer even though she had never smoked (I still suspect the chemicals she used in her job or exposure to radiation somewhere was the true source of her affliction). She put up a heroic struggle against the caner, but eventual lost the fight. In addition to trying to mourning her, I found myself having to plan her entire funeral and burial and also as both the executor of her estate and trustee of the trust she had established for her children. It was an emotional nightmare and her hostile ex-husband made for a toxic atmosphere. Perhaps the hardest thing of all was being in her house in Florida alone – her children were staying with their dad since she had died at home and they did not want to be in the house – and having to arrange for its sale, the storage of furniture, etc. Being alone in her house, among all of her things, and trying to grasp that she was really gone was so incredibly hard. Compounding the pain was the knowledge that she had not known happiness so much of the time – or at least such is my belief. Rather, she had “played by the rules” and tried to be what she believed was expected of her. Just as I had done throughout my whole life up to that point in time. And now she was gone and would never have the chance to be truly who she was.

Sadly, due to the “glass wall” I had always placed between myself and others to guard my horrible secret, I never got to know my sister as fully as I might have. Similarly, I had never allowed her – or anyone else – to really know me. As a result, I doubt she ever knew how much I loved her or how wonderful I thought she was. Her death made me look seriously at my own screwed up life and made me realize that my fate would be the same if I did not do something. I believed I could (1) take the suicide route and leave plenty of life insurance proceeds to care for my wife and kids, or (2) I could try to be who I really was. The fact that I am writing this post shows that I chose the latter. Thank you Kitty for helping me be who I really am.

Saturday Male Beauty

Photographer Adam Bouska

Understanding Formerly Closeted Gays - Update

In follow up to yesterday's post, I had some further thoughts: I can understand how much a never closeted partner wants the formerly closeted partner to "feel comfortabe" in his/her own skin, but that is something that only the formerly closeted partner can achieve on their own and in their own time. Trying to push them along or making comments and complaints about their perceived occassional lapses from the view of the never closeted partner will only makes matters worse. In fact, it can cause a sense of further failure on the part of the formerly closeted partner who may still be struggling at times with feelings of guilt or failure for not having been able to succeed at being straight and thereby letting down a former spouse or not living up to family expectations. As their committed partner, you do not want to instill in them feelings of having failed at being straight and now failing at being gay and out. All that will be accomplished is causing depression, friction and alienation. I speak from expeience on this.
In my view, as the never closeted partner, you do NOT want to go put your patner in this spot no matter how hard it might be at times trying to understand your partner's occassional inner conflicts. Be understanding and supportive. Your partner's actions and reactions have nothing to do with their feelings about you. Failure to heed this advice could - in fact, probably will - result in your unwittingly harming what otherwise is a wonderful relationship. Would that my ex could have understood this. It might not have saved our relationship, but it surely would have removed one area of frequent conflict.

Friday, February 29, 2008

Final Friday Male Beauty

Hillary Resorts to Bush Fear Tactics

In what I can only perceive as a move of desperation, Hillary Clinton is running an ad trying to motivate people to vote for her rather than Barack Obama based on fear. Her 3:00AM ad begins with language to the effect that "It's 3am and your children are safe and asleep. But there's a phone in the White House and it's ringing. Something's happening in the world. Your vote will decide who answers that call," implying the wrong vote - i.e. a vote for Obama - will endanger one's children. Hillary apparently thinks voters will still fall for the tactics of the Chimperator. Perhaps the GOP base likes such ads, but I suspect most Democrats have wised up to them. Fortunately, Obama had a great response which I hope gets plenty of coverage (

Now before we open this up for conversation, I just want to take a moment to respond to an ad that Sen. Clinton is apparently running today that asks, “Who do you want answering the phone in the White House when it’s 3 a.m. and something has happened in the world?”We’ve seen these ads before. They’re the kind that play on peoples’ fears to scare up votes.Well it won’t work this time. Because the question is not about picking up the phone. The question is — what kind of judgment will you make when you answer? We’ve had a red phone moment. It was the decision to invade Iraq. And Sen. Clinton gave the wrong answer. George Bush gave the wrong answer. John McCain gave the wrong answer.

And I’ll never see the threat of terrorism as a way to scare up votes, because it’s a threat that should rally this country around our common enemies. That’s the judgment we need at 3 a.m. And that’s the judgment that I am running for president to provide.

More Friday Male Beauty

Understanding Formerly Clseted Gays

A situation came up involving two of my dearest friends that made me think of fights I had with my former boy friend that would basically arise from the inability of someone who has never been in the closet to understand and have empathy for how a formerly closeted gay may act at times, not out of any intention of hurting the partner, but rather to avoid controversy or even just reacting without thinking when confronted with an unexpected situation or question. Even though one has come out and made huge progress with putting aside the indoctrination with which they were raised, from time to time situations can occur where the formerly closeted partner may act in a way that suggests shame or embarrassment about his orientation. In reality, such is not the case, yet that is the perception of the never closeted partner.

For example, one time we were riding in a cab from the airport and my former b/f kept trying to hold my hand in a way that to my perception was obnoxiously flaunting it to the cab driver. I felt uncomfortable and pulled my hand away, thereby unthinkingly causing World War III to erupt when we arrived at our hotel. I merely had felt uncomfortable and thought all the hand holding under the particular circumstances seemed somewhat rude to the driver. Therefore, I acted out of courtesy to the driver. I never intended a slight to my b/f, but he could not and would not accept my explanation, accused me of still being a “closet case,” and would not accept my apology. It was hours before things calmed down and reverted to normalcy.

Something similar happened to my friends and my formerly closeted friend acted without thinking, largely I suspect to avoid what he thought might be an awkward situation given the other people present. His partner who was never in the closet and who had a supportive family growing up perceived the action as a slight and a repudiation of sorts of their relationship much the way my ex b/f did with the cab incident. As happened to me, my formerly closeted friend found himself faced with his own World War III. I am 1000% confident that my formerly closeted friend – who grew up in a family that makes mine look like liberal socialists in comparison – never intended to slight his partner (who he loves dearly) in any way whatsoever. Yet, I doubt my never closeted friend will ever fully believe it.

Being in the closet truly does damage. The longer one is in the closet and/or the more arch-conservative and anti-gay one’s upbringing, the harder it is to put it all fully behind you. Try as you might, from time to time it may unconsciously impact on your actions – particularly in the eyes of those never in the closet - even after one has been out and proud for years. Those who have never been in the closet sadly do not understand this phenomenon and perhaps never will. They have not lived it and experienced its insidious effects. Empathy is a two way street. A never closet partner needs to have some empathy for what their partner has been through and try to understand some of the after effects. I hope my never closeted friend realizes the wonderful treasure he has in his partner and forgives his unintended perceived offense. Would that I had someone in my life who loved me as much.

Ellen DeGeneras : ‘We Must Change’ Our Country’s Attitudes Towards Gays.

I am glad to see that Ellen DeGeneras who has a huge number of viewers is speaking out about the murder of 15-year-old Lawrence King, which I have posted about previously. For new readers, Larry was killed by a classmate for being gay. Saying that “we must change our country,” Ellen urged her audience to “check on who you’re voting for” to see if they stand for gay rights. As I have said before, the constant venom spewed by the Christian Right slowly buy surely creates an atmosphere where Christianist bigots and others come to have a mindset where it is acceptable to kill and use other forms of violence against gays. It's horrible and it's sick, yet the main street media lacks the balls to lay responsibility at the feet of people like Mike Huckabee and other self-righteous false Christians. The law prevents one from yelling "fire" in a crowded theater, but no one stops the haters from doing the equivalent thing when it comes to engendering hatred towards LGBT citizens. I salute Ellen for saying what she did. here are highlights from Think Progress (

I need to talk to you about something that’s really serious and really sad. And, if you know me it’s hard to talk about sad stuff without getting emotional but this is really important to talk about. On February 12th an openly gay 15 year-old boy named Larry, (King) who was an 8th grader in Oxnard, California was murdered by a fellow 8th grader, named Brandon. Larry was killed because he was gay. Days before he was murdered, Larry had asked his killer to be his Valentine.

I don’t want to be political. This is not political. I’m not a political person, but this is personal to me. A boy has been killed and a number of lives have been ruined. And, somewhere along the line the killer, Brandon got the message that it’s so threatening so awful and so horrific that Larry would want to be his Valentine, that killing Larry seemed to be the right thing to do. And when the message out there is so horrible that to be gay, you can get killed for it, we need to change the message.

Larry was not a second-class citizen. I am not a second-class citizen. It’s ok if you’re gay. I don’t care what people say; I don’t care what people think. I know there are entire groups of people who face discrimination every single day and I know we are a long way from treating each other equally.

All of it is unacceptable. All of it. But I would like you to start paying attention to how often being gay is the punch line of a monologue or how often gay jokes are in a movie. And that kind of message, laughing at someone because they’re gay is just the beginning. It starts with laughing at someone, and then it’s verbal abuse, then it’s physical abuse, and it’s this kid Brandon killing a kid like Larry.

We must change our country, and we can do it. We can do it with our behavior; we can do it with the messages that we send our children. We can do it with our vote. This is an election year and there’s a lot of talk about change. I think one thing we should change is hate. Check on who you’re voting for. Does that person really truly believe that we are all equal under the law? If you’re not sure, I say change your vote. We deserve better.

My heart goes out to everybody involved on this horrible, horrible incident. All the families, even Brandon’s life has changed because he did this.

NOTE: A video of Ellen's comments can be seen on Think Progress or on Ellen's web site:

Friday Male Beauty

USA Ranks First in Nations in Incarerating its Citizens

In yet another example of how fucked up the priorities are in the Amerika of the Chimperator, in addition to living with domestic spying on citizens at levels equal to Russia and Communist China, we also have the infamy of locking up a higher percentage of our citizens than any other country. The GOP and its Christianist base oppose funding almost every program that better the education, circumstances and lives of citizens, yet they happily finance prisons to lock up those who might have avoided a life of crime had proper programs been available (no doubt in part because a disproportionate number of inmates are minorities - translation, not whites - who the Christianists don't like). Moreover, with the country's draconian drug laws, minor offenders often end up in prison which only increases the likelihood that they will have more scrapes with the law once they are released. I truly dispair at being an American at times. Here are some highlights of the findings of the Pew Center (
The United States incarcerates more people than any country in the world, including the far more populousnation of China. At the start of the new year, the American penal system held more than 2.3 million adults. China was second, with 1.5 million people behind bars, and Russia was a distant third with 890,000 inmates, according to the latest available figures. Beyond the sheer number of inmates, America also is the global leader in the rate atwhich it incarcerates its citizenry, outpacing nations like South Africa and Iran. In Germany, 93 peopleare in prison for every 100,000 adults andchildren. In the U.S, the rate is roughly eight timesthat, or 750 per 100,000.

Canadian Evangelist Takes Credit for Film Crackdown

A blogger friend sent me a link to an article in the Globe and Mail ( which suggests that the posionous urge of Christianists to censor all of society is not limited to the fundamentalist nutcases in the USA. As is typical, they believe that the entire world must live according to their distorted version of Christianity. They care nothing of the rights of others to hold a contrary view and never grasp the fact that they have a simple solution available to them: if you do not like the movie(s) just do not go and see it/them. It's a solution that's plain, simple and does not impinge upon the rights of others to hold differing religious views or views as to what constitutes a good movie. I would further add that from my experience, those who are so rattled by homosexuality and matters sexual are usually the ones who have the severe emotional and psychological issues. Just look at the Southern Baptist Convention and the mushroom number of cases of sexual impropriety by its ministers. I surely hope that the Canadian government reverses this measure. Here are some highlights:
OTTAWA, TORONTO — A well-known evangelical crusader is claiming credit for the federal government's move to deny tax credits to TV and film productions that contain graphic sex and violence or other offensive content. Charles McVety, president of the Canada Family Action Coalition, said his lobbying efforts included discussions with Public Safety Minister Stockwell Day and Justice Minister Rob Nicholson, and "numerous" meetings with officials in the Prime Minister's Office. "We're thankful that someone's finally listening," he said yesterday. "It's fitting with conservative values, and I think that's why Canadians voted for a Conservative government." Mr. McVety said films promoting homosexuality, graphic sex or violence should not receive tax dollars, and backbench Conservative MPs and cabinet ministers support his campaign.
Mr. Day and Mr. Nicholson said through officials yesterday they did not recall discussing the issue with Mr. McVety. Arts groups say they will fight the change. Director David Cronenberg and other big industry names warned that the edgy, low-budget films that have garnered Canadians international acclaim will be at risk. Conservatives deny that the changes are driven by politics or Mr. McVety, noting the previous Liberal government pledged to review the guidelines as far back as 2003. Conservative MP Dave Batters recently urged the new president of Telefilm Canada, Michel Roy, to block federal funding for objectionable films, listing Young People Fucking as a recent example.
Mr. Cronenberg, whose most recent film was the Oscar-nominated Russian mob thriller Eastern Promises, called the move an assault on the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. "The irony is that it is the Canadian films that have given us an international reputation [that] would be most at risk because they are the edgy, relatively low-budget films made by people like me and others that will be targeted by this panel," he said. "The platform they're suggesting is akin to a Communist Chinese panel of unknown people, who, behind closed doors, will make a second ruling after bodies like Telefilm Canada have already invested."
"It seems ill-conceived from beginning to end, and is less about censorship than destroying the economic foundation of our entire industry," said Mr. Gero, who shot his debut feature film for $1.5-million with support from Telefilm and other government agencies. "It's old people fucking with the Canadian film industry."

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Final Thursday Male Beauty

Late Episcopal Bishop Paul Moore Jr's Daughter Reveals He Was Gay

Personally, I have always thought gays make better spiritual leaders and advisers than straights. I think it's because as gays we are social outcasts to a degree and even when in the closet we have to give much more thought and soul searching to issues of religious belief (or nonbelief) . In any event, it is interesting to learn that a former pillar of the Episcopal Church was in fact gay. I suspect that Bishop Moore found himself following the expected path just as I did and that like me, at some point he just could not keep doing it. Being older than me and from an even more conservative generation, I suspect he felt he could never come out. Hence the boyfriend on the side. The full story will be in next week's New Yorker. For the time being, here are somee highlights from the New York Post (

Episcopalians are reeling from the news in this week's New Yorker that the late Bishop Paul Moore - the 6-foot-5 patrician whose political activism drove many parishioners from the church - was a closeted homosexual who had a gay lover for the last 30 years of his life. While the Episcopal Church has embraced gays and ordained lesbian priests, Moore's secret life came as a shock. Moore - who made the cover of Newsweek in 1972, when he took over the Archdiocese of New York - died in May 2003.

His daughter, Honor Moore, the eldest of nine children he had with his first wife, Jenny McKean, writes that six months after his death, "the telephone rang. [The caller] had a confident voice. Andrew Verver (as I'll call him) was the only person in my father's will whose name was unfamiliar." When Honor asked "Verver," who had traveled with Moore to the Greek island of Patmos the summer before, about her father's sexual life, he replied, "I was his sexual life," and, "Of course, there were other men." Then, Honor describes bringing "Verver" on a touching visit to Moore's grave in Connecticut.

Dutch Crown Princess To Attend Gay Rights Conference

Admittedly, the Netherlands has been in the forefront of nations granting equal rights to members of their LGBT citizenry, but I nonetheless find it great that a member of European royalty is going to formally attend an LGBT rights conference. Moreover, Princess Maxima (pictured at left) will also be signing an accord calling for the full acceptance of gays in The Netherlands. Here are some highlights from (

(Amsterdam, Netherlands) The future Queen of The Netherlands will attend an LGBT rights conference organized by the Dutch Gay Federation (COC), becoming the first royal in the world to personally appear at such a session. Princess Maxima will address the conference, to be held in four major cities - Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague and Utrecht.

The conference will discuss the exclusion of gays in society. A royal spokesperson said that the princess will sign an accord at the end of the conference calling for the full acceptance of gays in The Netherlands. "The Princess is in favor of equal rights of all groups in the Netherlands," the spokesperson said. "It is the first time a member of the royal family has attended a meeting with such significance for gays." While it is the first time a member of the Royal Family has personally attended a gay rights event Queen Beatrix has spoken out a number of times in support of LGBT rights.

The Netherlands was the world's first country to legalize same-sex marriage and LGBT civil rights but many gays still feel they are not fully part of the political process. In addition there have been growing instances of homophobic attacks in the country.

More Thursday Male Beauty

Obama's Open Letter To Gay Americans

The Obama campaign has released another open letter to the LGBT community. It went up first on The Bilerico Project. The text is set out below. While some have yet to forgive Obama for the McClurkin debacle in South Carolina, I believe that from his statements in speeches, inclusion of LGBT issues on his campaign website (unlike Hillary), ads in LGBT publications and now this letter, Obama has seen the light and is fully supportive of gays. Here is the text of the letter:

I'm running for President to build an America that lives up to our founding promise of equality for all - a promise that extends to our gay brothers and sisters. It's wrong to have millions of Americans living as second-class citizens in this nation. And I ask for your support in this election so that together we can bring about real change for all LGBT Americans.

Equality is a moral imperative. That's why throughout my career, I have fought to eliminate discrimination against LGBT Americans. In Illinois, I co-sponsored a fully inclusive bill that prohibited discrimination on the basis of both sexual orientation and gender identity, extending protection to the workplace, housing, and places of public accommodation. In the U.S. Senate, I have co-sponsored bills that would equalize tax treatment for same-sex couples and provide benefits to domestic partners of federal employees. And as president, I will place the weight of my administration behind the enactment of the Matthew Shepard Act to outlaw hate crimes and a fully inclusive Employment Non-Discrimination Act to outlaw workplace discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.

As your President, I will use the bully pulpit to urge states to treat same-sex couples with full equality in their family and adoption laws. I personally believe that civil unions represent the best way to secure that equal treatment. But I also believe that the federal government should not stand in the way of states that want to decide on their own how best to pursue equality for gay and lesbian couples - whether that means a domestic partnership, a civil union, or a civil marriage. Unlike Senator Clinton, I support the complete repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) - a position I have held since before arriving in the U.S. Senate. While some say we should repeal only part of the law, I believe we should get rid of that statute altogether. Federal law should not discriminate in any way against gay and lesbian couples, which is precisely what DOMA does. I have also called for us to repeal Don't Ask, Don't Tell, and I have worked to improve the Uniting American Families Act so we can afford same-sex couples the same rights and obligations as married couples in our immigration system.

The next president must also address the HIV/AIDS epidemic. When it comes to prevention, we do not have to choose between values and science. While abstinence education should be part of any strategy, we also need to use common sense. We should have age-appropriate sex education that includes information about contraception. We should pass the JUSTICE Act to combat infection within our prison population. And we should lift the federal ban on needle exchange, which could dramatically reduce rates of infection among drug users. In addition, local governments can protect public health by distributing contraceptives.

We also need a president who's willing to confront the stigma - too often tied to homophobia - that continues to surround HIV/AIDS. I confronted this stigma directly in a speech to evangelicals at Rick Warren's Saddleback Church, and will continue to speak out as president. That is where I stand on the major issues of the day. But having the right positions on the issues is only half the battle. The other half is to win broad support for those positions. And winning broad support will require stepping outside our comfort zone. If we want to repeal DOMA, repeal Don't Ask, Don't Tell, and implement fully inclusive laws outlawing hate crimes and discrimination in the workplace, we need to bring the message of LGBT equality to skeptical audiences as well as friendly ones - and that's what I've done throughout my career. I brought this message of inclusiveness to all of America in my keynote address at the 2004 Democratic convention. I talked about the need to fight homophobia when I announced my candidacy for President, and I have been talking about LGBT equality to a number of groups during this campaign - from local LGBT activists to rural farmers to parishioners at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, where Dr. Martin Luther King once preached.

Just as important, I have been listening to what all Americans have to say. I will never compromise on my commitment to equal rights for all LGBT Americans. But neither will I close my ears to the voices of those who still need to be convinced. That is the work we must do to move forward together. It is difficult. It is challenging. And it is necessary.

Americans are yearning for leadership that can empower us to reach for what we know is possible. I believe that we can achieve the goal of full equality for the millions of LGBT people in this country. To do that, we need leadership that can appeal to the best parts of the human spirit. Join with me, and I will provide that leadership. Together, we will achieve real equality for all Americans, gay and straight alike.

Congress Finally Begins to Seriously Challenge the Chimperator

The Chimperator has time and time again shown that he believes he and his minions are above the law and basically accountable to no one. In his delusional mind, he thinks he's a monarch who rules by Divine right, apparently. Many people do not realize how dangerous Bush's behavior has been and how badly he has been subverting the U. S. Constitution's assignment of powers to the branches of the federal government. While sounding dry and boring, these issues are critical and consist of high crimes that would justify an impeachment charge. Overall, Bush's misconduct in office makes Richard Nixon look like a petty criminal in comparison.

Finally, the Congress is growing some balls and is going to challenge the Chimperator and is seeking a Grand Jury to consider contempt of Congress charges against former White House Counsel, Harriet Miers and Joshua Bolten, White House Chief of Staff to comply with properly issued House subpoenas. Should the U.S. Attorney fail to proceed with convening a Grand Jury, the next step will be for the House Judiciary Committee to file a civil suit seeking enforcement of their subpoenas. Here is the text of a letter sent by Nacy Pelosi to the current U.S. Attorney General:

February 28, 2008

The Honorable Michael B. Mukasey
The Attorney General
U.S. Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W
Washington, D.C. 20530-0001

Dear Mr. Attorney General:

In accordance with 2 U.S.C. § 194 and the attached House Resolution 979 (adopted on February 14, 2008), I have today sent a certification to the United States Attorney for the District of Columbia, Jeffrey Taylor, advising him of the failure of former White House Counsel, Harriet Miers, to appear, testify and produce documents in compliance with a duly issued subpoena of a subcommittee of the House Judiciary Committee and of the failure of Joshua Bolten, White House Chief of Staff and custodian of White House documents, to produce documents in his custody as required by a duly issued subpoena of the House Judiciary Committee.

Under section 194, Mr. Taylor is now required "to bring the matter before the grand jury for its action." The appropriate grand jury action is a criminal charge for violation of 2 U.S.C. § 192, which provides: "Every person who having been summoned as a witness by the authority of either House of Congress to give testimony or to produce papers . . . willfully makes default . . . shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor" and shall be subject to a fine and "imprisonment in a common jail for not less than one month nor more than twelve months."

According to the testimony of your predecessor, former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, and your recent testimony before the House Judiciary Committee, the Justice Department intends to prevent Mr. Taylor from complying with the statute and enforcing the contempt citations against Ms. Miers and Mr. Bolten. You claimed that "enforcement by way of contempt of a congressional subpoena is not permitted when the President directs a direct adviser of his... not to appear or when he directs any member of the executive not to produce documents." Hearing on Oversight of the Dep't of Justice Before the H. Comm. on the Judiciary, 110th Cong. 87-88 (Feb. 7, 2008). You purported to base your view on a "long line of authority," but cited no court decision that supports this proposition.

There is no authority by which persons may wholly ignore a subpoena and fail to appear as directed because a President unilaterally instructs them to do so. Even if a subpoenaed witness intends to assert a privilege in response to questions, the witness is not at liberty to disregard the subpoena and fail to appear at the required time and place. Surely, your Department would not tolerate that type of action if the witness were subpoenaed to a federal grand jury. Short of a formal assertion of executive privilege, which cannot be made in this case, there is no authority that permits a President to advise anyone to ignore a duly issued congressional subpoena for documents.

Your press spokesman has stated that you will "act promptly" to review this matter and reach a final decision. We will appreciate your acting with appropriate dispatch on this important matter. I strongly urge you to reconsider your position and to ensure that our nation is operating under the rule of law and not at presidential whim. If, however, you intend to persist in preventing Mr. Taylor from carrying out his statutory obligation to present this matter to the grand jury in the District of Columbia, we respectfully request that you inform us of that decision within one week from today, so that the House may proceed with a civil enforcement suit in federal district court.

Thank your for your prompt consideration and attention to this matter.

best regards,

Speaker of the House

Thursday Male Beauty

Was Nigerean Archbishop Peter Akinola Involved In Massacre of Muslims?

Based on a tip from Wayne Besen’s blog, I read the new article “God’s Country” in the Atlantic Monthly ( that looks at the religious wars raging in Nigeria. It’s a lengthy article that shows just how toxic religion can be and that its fruits are often death and destruction rather than spiritual salvation. What was of particular interest was the part of the story that looks at the actions of the Christian Association of Nigeria which at the relevant times to the massacre described in the article was headed up by gay-hating Anglican Archbishop, Peter Akinola. This is the same Archbishop Akinola that many conservative Episcopal parishes in the USA see as a spiritual leader and to whom they are flocking to as they renounce the Episcopal Church because of its policies toward gays. If Akinola has any implication whatsoever in these atrocities, not only is he a monster, but it would also seem that these break away Episcopal parishes need to seriously rethink who they are getting in bed with. Here are some story highlights:

A few hundred yards down the road from the church, there’s a cornfield. In it, a row of mounds: more mass graves. White signs tally the dead below in green paint: 110, 50, 65, 100, 55, 25, 60, 20, 40, 105. Two months after the church was razed, Christian men and boys surrounded Yelwa. Many were bare-chested; others wore shirts on which they’d reportedly pinned white name tags identifying them as members of the Christian Association of Nigeria, an umbrella organization founded in the 1970s to give Christians a collective and unified voice as strong as that of Muslims. Each tag had a number instead of a name: a code, it seemed, for identification. They attacked the town. According to Human Rights Watch, 660 Muslims were massacred over the course of the next two days, including the patients in the Al-Amin clinic. Twelve mosques and 300 houses went up in flames. Young girls were marched to a nearby Christian town and forced to eat pork and drink alcohol. Many were raped, and 50 were killed.

During the Christian attack, the two young women took shelter in an elder’s guarded home. On the second day, the Christian militia arrived at the house. They were covered in red and blue paint and were wearing those numbered white name tags. The Christians first killed the guards, then chose among the women. With others, the two young women were marched toward the Christian village. “They were killing children on the road,” Danladi said. Outside the elementary school, her abductor grabbed hold of two Muslim boys she knew, 9 and 10 years old. Along with other men, he took a machete to them until they were in pieces, then wrapped the pieces in a rubber tire and set it on fire.
At the time of the massacre, Archbishop Peter Akinola was the president of the Christian Association of Nigeria, whose membership was implicated in the killings. He has since lost his bid for another term but, as primate of the Anglican Church of Nigeria, he is still the leader of 18 million Anglicans. He is a colleague of my father, who was the presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church in America from 1997 to 2006. But the American Episcopals’ election of an openly homosexual bishop in 2003, which Archbishop Akinola denounced as “satanic,” created distance between them.

Archbishop Akinola has repeatedly spoken critically about Islam and liberal Western Protestants, and he was understandably wary of my motives for asking his thoughts. For Akinola, the relationship between liberal Protestants and Islam is straightforward: if Western Christians abandon conservative morals, then the global Church will be weakened in its struggle against Islam. When asked if those wearing name tags that read “Christian Association of Nigeria” had been sent to the Muslim part of Yelwa, the archbishop grinned. “No comment,” he said.

New Evidence Said to Emerge In Gay Porn Producer Murder

I’m not sure what I believe about this case involving two Virginia Beach men accused of killing gay adult video producer Bryan Kocis at his home in Pennsylvania. I know for a fact that there are local gays in this area who are convinced that Joseph Kerekes and Harlow Cuadra are innocent and were set up to receive the blame. These supporters have go so far as to raise money for their legal defense costs. In addition, there have been persistent rumors that Cuadra and Kerekes were running a call boy network in the Washington, D.C., area that had GOP players in the DC area as clients. Similarly, there has been other speculation that Cuadra and Kerekes are being set up in order to silence them and/or have them destroy the DC client list. Yet other theories even cite that the case somehow has ties with the double murder and suicide last summer in an Orlando, Florida, at the residence owned by the former Executive Director of the Georgia Republican Party (Jason Robert Drake was identified as the shooter) and to right-wing GOP Congressman Patrick McHenry who was found to have numerous young men residing at his residence and to have ties to Jason Robert Drake ( Again, I am at a loss as to what the true story might actually turn out to be. It's just very ironic that two residents of conservative, GOP dominated Virginia Beach are involved in such a case. In any event, here are highlights from’s latest coverage (

(Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania) The prosecution in the murder trial of two men accused of killing gay adult video producer Bryan Kocis says it has received new evidence from the FBI. The Luzerne County District Attorney's office has told the judge in the case that the FBI has turned over several handed over various handwritten letters believed to have been written by defendants Joseph Kerekes and Harlow Cuadra. The District Attorney's office has not revealed what is in the letters, but a motion to judge Peter Paul Olszewski Jr. asks for an order requiring both defendants to produce handwriting samples to the court. "The documents indicate that both defendants had written the letters which contain material information relative to the ... case," the motion says.

On the hard drive they found a photograph of a man who was to have had an appointment with Kocis the night he was killed. The picture came with the name "Drake" and police at the time said it could be a nickname or his last name. Several days after the picture was released the Times Leader newspaper found a Virginia Beach escort who said he was the subject of photograph that that it was a head shot that he uses for publicity purposes, that he had never heard of a "Drake" and that he was working in Virginia the night Kocis was killed.

When the pair became suspects in the murder Virginia Beach police and the FBI began their own investigation into the men and started looking into their business. In July Cuadra and Kerekes were charged in Virginia with racketeering, conspiracy to launder money and conspiracy to receive money from the earnings of prostitution. The pair made a plea agreement in which they pleaded no contest and allowed police in Virginia to seize their assets.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Final Wednesday Male Beauty

The Nightmare of Killer Robots Is Here

It is frightening to realize that our own version of the clone wars from Star Wars may be closer to reality than any of us care to think. This story ( describes how robots are being designed to fight in battles and may in time become autonomous. This is science fiction come to life in nightmare form. How long until these weapons fall into the wrong hands or - God forbid - go out of control and perhaps kill innocent people? Sadly, why is it that I suspect that Emperor Palpatine Dick Cheney probably thinks this is a wonderful development? Here are some story highlights:
Increasingly autonomous, gun-totting robots developed for warfare could easily fall into the hands of terrorists and may one day unleash a robot arms race, a top expert on artificial intelligence told AFP. "They pose a threat to humanity," said University of Sheffield professor Noel Sharkey ahead of a keynote address Wednesday before Britain's Royal United Services Institute. Intelligent machines deployed on battlefields around the world -- from mobile grenade launchers to rocket-firing drones -- can already identify and lock onto targets without human help. There are more than 4,000 US military robots on the ground in Iraq, as well as unmanned aircraft that have clocked hundreds of thousands of flight hours.

Several countries, led by the United States, have already invested heavily in robot warriors developed for use on the battlefield. South Korea and Israel both deploy armed robot border guards, while China, India, Russia and Britain have all increased the use of military robots. Washington plans to spend four billion dollars by 2010 on unmanned technology systems, with total spending expected rise to 24 billion, according to the Department of Defense's Unmanned Systems Roadmap 2007-2032, released in December. James Canton, an expert on technology innovation and CEO of the Institute for Global Futures, predicts that deployment within a decade of detachments that will include 150 soldiers and 2,000 robots.

The use of such devices by terrorists should be a serious concern, said Sharkey. Captured robots would not be difficult to reverse engineer, and could easily replace suicide bombers as the weapon-of-choice. "I don't know why that has not happened already," he said. But even more worrisome, he continued, is the subtle progression from the semi-autonomous military robots deployed today to fully independent killing machines. "I have worked in artificial intelligence for decades, and the idea of a robot making decisions about human termination terrifies me," Sharkey said.

Sample Obama LGBT Targeted Ad in Texas and Ohio

Let's see if Hillary makes a similar ad buy. To date, her campaign web site STILL doesn't refence LGBT citizens any where on its face.

In Search of Gay Surfers

As a surfer myself, I know that other gay male surfers exist even though this article in the Advocate ( correctly indicates that there are no "out" pro surfers. Like any sport, I suspect that they are there even among the ranks of the elite Association of Surfing Professionals ("ASP") world tour contestants. Since there is a macho aspect of surfing, I suspect just like in pro football and pro baseball, the gay surfers stay closeted by choice - at least professionally. No doubt the fear of losing lucrative endorsements also plays a major roll in keeping the closet door shut tightly. While the article mentions a yahoo group for gay surfers, I can state for a fact that Myspace also has similar groups - I belong to a couple, in fact. Personally, I don't advertise that I'm gay while out in the water, but I DO enjoy discretely admiring the eye candy. :) Here are some story highlights:

Gay women who surf abound -- they even have their own reality show -- and yet finding blokes who are out, proud, and surf isn't easy. Writer Dennis Hensley tells us why. Despite its easygoing, enlightened vibe, surfing has a long history of homophobia. When a 1988 magazine article implied that Aussie surf star Cheyne Horan was gay, he lost endorsement deals and friends. A decade later, former top-5 pro Robbins Thompson left the sport in disgust after his sexuality became known and he started hearing taunts in the water and having the word "fag" painted on his car.

"The gay guys I know who surf tend to try and keep their sexuality and their surfing separate," says Leslie Smith, a part-time surf enthusiast who works for a nonprofit organization in Manhattan. "They’re not closeted, but they’re not going to necessarily wear freedom rings on the beach." Smith adds that he has encountered homophobia on the beach, but like most surf-related altercations, it was all about turf. "I pulled up to this little cove in Hawaii a couple years ago," he recalls, "and a couple of a guys came over like, 'What are you doing here? Locals only.' They started calling me gay and making effeminate gestures and it became clear that I was going to leave or I was going to get beaten."

When L.A.-based entrepreneur Eric Mueller started surfing in the late 1990s, he found a far more welcoming scene. "I hung out with this straight guy who had a girlfriend, yet he'd always be like, 'I really want to make out with you,'" says Mueller, laughing at the memory. "He was the epitome of the surfer types I would meet, just very laid-back guys who didn’t subscribe to all the rules of society, including the ones that say guys aren’t supposed to make out with other guys."

If there's hope for an out and proud future for gay men in surfing, it's personified by Dan Abrams, a financial analyst in Los Angeles who started a Yahoo group for gay surfers several years back that has since grown into a gang of around 20 or so gay and gay-friendly surfers. "It became like this really cool little family," says Abrams, an Army veteran and former USC rugby player, "and we've never experienced any homophobia in the water whatsoever. We openly talk about guys in the water and I’ve never really gotten anything more than just a surprised second look."

Abrams would love it if his group helped inspire other gay men to hop on board. "Sometimes, I think we worry so much about homophobia that it keeps us from doing things that we're interested in," says Abrams. "Maybe if people knew there were other (gay) people doing this, it might give them hope or a network of people to go do this with." And, let's face it; it's pretty sexy too. "When I’m out at a bar and someone’s like, 'What are your hobbies?' and I say surfing, their eyes perk up," says Abrams. "I have a surfboard in my apartment," adds Ahrens, "and I said to a friend who’s very stylish, 'I should probably get that out of here. It doesn’t look proper,' and he said, 'Oh, no no no, keep it there. That’s going to get you laid.'"

More Wednesday Male Beauty

9/11 Redux: 'Thousands of Aliens' in U.S. Flight Schools Illegally

While the Chimperator and the GOP make pronouncements that they have made Americans safer, it now appears like so many other things that they do, it's all talk and no action. American citizens are now spied upon domestically and have vastly reduced privacy and are subject to arrest at the Chimperator's whim, yet the same problems that allowed the 9/11 attack to occur still go on today as shown in this new ABC News article ( In short, we have given up freedoms and legal protections for nothing. If anything, Bush/Cheney have made the country much less secure and have vastly inflamed Islamic hatred towards the USA. Here are some story highlights:

Thousands of foreign student pilots have been able to enroll and obtain pilot licenses from U.S. flight schools, despite tough laws passed in the wake of the 9/ll attacks, according to internal government documents obtained by ABC News. "Some of the very same conditions that allowed the 9-11 tragedy to happen in the first place are still very much in existence today," wrote one regional security official to his boss at the TSA, the Transportation Security Administration.

Under the new laws, American flight schools are only supposed to provide pilot training to foreign students who have been given a background check by the TSA and have a specific type of visa. But in thousands of cases that has not happened, according to the documents and current and former government officials involved in the program. "TSA's enforcement is basically nonexistent," said former FAA inspector Bill McNease, in an interview for ABC News' "World News With Charles Gibson."

No one from the TSA or Homeland Security would agree to be interviewed for this story, but officials said they were preparing an official statement in response. The Department of Homeland Security would not provide an official from the flight school program to be interviewed for this story. In a statement, the DHS said, "We have a high degree of confidence that our layered security measures, both seen and unseen, have raised the level of security in our aviation sector." The statement did not address the issue of the thousands of students who have received pilot training and licenses with improper visas,

Obama Makes Gay Ad Buys in Ohio, Texas

The Obama campaign is lavishing some of its cash advantage on the LGBT community with targeted ad buys in Ohio and Texas leading up to the critical March 4th primaries in both states (Rhode Island and Vermont also vote that day). According to Obama LGBT Steering Committee member Eric Stern, the campaign has just completed an ad buy with queer newspapers in the four largest LGBT markets of those two states -- Columbus, Cleveland, Dallas and Houston.

Full page ads will appear starting this Friday in Outlook Weekly of Columbus, the Gay People's Chronicle of Cleveland, the Dallas Voice, and OutSmart, which is Houston based. Buying a full-page, four-color ad that appears one time typically costs anywhere between $1,000 and $2,000 in weekly publications. In the Gay People's Chronicle, for instance, the ad cost about $850 according to the paper's advertising manager; the same ad went for about $1500 in the Dallas Voice.

Stern called the coordinated buy "the icing on the cake" in terms of the Obama camp's outreach to the gay community in Ohio and Texas. "It's a direct appeal to LGBT voters asking for their support," he said, adding that the ad includes information about how people can get involved with the campaign. The Obama campaign has actively been trying to cut into the longstanding ties between gays and lesbians and Hillary Clinton. Stern paraphrased the message of the ad as a "call for the country to come together and unify around creating national progress toward equality for LGBT Americans." (Kerry Eleveld, The Advocate)

Wednesday Male Beauty

Fear of Commitment

In reaction to my depressed post during the wee hours over the weekend, I received a number of e-mails and comments. One e-mail indicated that the writer had no desire to be in a relationship ever again since he did not want to set himself up to be hurt again should the relationship end or his partner die before him. Another friend expressed a different reason for his inability to allow himself to become truly close with others: being still locked in the long pattern of never fully investing himself or getting truly close to others due to his many years living in the closet before coming out, especially during many years in the military. Yet another friend tragically lost his parents simultaneously at a relatively young age and then suffered the loss of his twin brother a little more than 10 years later. He resolved that he’d never get totally close emotionally to anyone ever again, thus excluding the possibility of a committed relationship, since he could not bear the thought of once again experiencing the pain of loss. These lines of reasoning can be described as reactions to fear – fear of being hurt or fear of discovered. To me, neither is a good way to live one’s life. This type of existence leaves the individuals isolated and, in my opinion, unfulfilled.

I will freely admit that I am a relationship oriented person. Being fully invested in a relationship DOES involve the potential risk of being hurt. But the rewards can be so amazing. I will admit that during my marriage I kept a “glass wall” between my former wife and me, yet that does not mean I did not love her or that I did not enjoy an emotional intimacy with her. Yes, it was not as complete and fulfilling as it would have been had I been straight and not living in self-denial (and self-loathing) in the closet. Nonetheless there were many rewards, hopefully for both of us. Likewise, in the relationship with my former boyfriend, there were amazing emotional and spiritual rewards. When the relationship ended, it was devastating, but at least I had experienced the wonder that only such commitment can provided.

The reality is that there is risk in virtually every aspect of life. However, as the saying goes, it is better to have loved and lost than to have never have loved at all. To experience the joy and wonder of true intimacy to me is well worth the risk of being hurt. Particularly, if the other option is to remain remote and empty, albeit safe from ever being hurt.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Final Tuesday Male Beauty

Gay Porn Offer Prompts Multimillion Dollar Lawsuit

The facts of this lawsuit don't quite add up to me. When does a free offer for porn go out unsolicited or when one has not previously purchased porn from another vendor? Especially one not covered in warning language? I've certainly never received an offer like this one that did not have plenty of warning language. Has anyone else? I cannot help but wonder if dear old dad didn't order the stuff and now is trying to (1) cover it up and (2) make a fast buck in the process. Naturally, nut job James Dobson and fundies at Focus on the Family are saying that the 12 year old girl will be "scarred for life" after mistakenly opening the gay porn mailer addressed to her father. Personally, I suspect she will be more scarred by being exposed to the hate and lunacy disseminated by Mr. Dobson, et al. Here are some highlights from PageOneQ (
In May of 2007, sandwich shop owner and former Big Brother 2 contestant Kent Blackwelder, according to Family News in Focus, heard a "frightened gasp" and a "desperate call for Daddy" after she opened what she thought to be a Disney mailer, but turned out to be a graphic advertisement addressed to her father, promising a free DVD, from a company called Specialty Publications.
The suit accuses Specialty of violating postal law by neglecting to print a warning of sexually explicit content on the outer envelope. The Blackwelder family, as a result of the accused omission, says to have suffered "great pain of body and mind," citing "shock, horror, humiliation and embarrassment, as well as anxiety." The suit, therefore, seeks $350,000 in compensatory damages, plus $3.5 million punitive, in addition to an injunction compelling Specialty Publications to comply with postal regulations.
"The envelope," as the lawsuit describes, "contained on the outside the message 'New! Free DVD enclosed!' There were no warnings on the envelope that the envelope contained sexually oriented advertising." The free DVD being offered was titled "Titan Men's Farm Fresh," and was promised as a reward for a paid subscription to "Freshmen," a gay pornographic magazine.
Blackwelder seems down on his luck according to the local newspaper. No doubt $3.5 million would be a nice pick me up:
Now her father, an ex-mortgage broker, current deli owner and one-time contestant on the reality television series "Big Brother" (

Record Housing Market Drop

The GOP-Chimperator deregulation economic plan continues to wreak havoc on the U.S. housing prices as reported by MSN Money. Most hard hit are Florida and California where the percentage drops in values are in double digits for some cities. I truly believe that until housing begins to recover, the larger economy will continue to tank. Sadly, ther appears to be no turn around in sight. Thankfully, in the greater Norfolk area market, prices have yet to decline overall, although certain neighborhoods and larger condo projects have been hard hit. Here are story highlights (
A 291-city report finds broad declines, but the biggest pain is limited to California and Florida. Small towns in the South and West are holding up well, number crunchers say. The 291-city report finds widespread declines, but the worst pain is found in California, where homes on average lost 6.7% of their value over the year; Florida, where homes prices declined 4.7%; and the desert Southwest, where overbuilt Arizona and Nevada continue to writhe.
"It's a perfect storm: Housing is heading down, and the economy is heading down with it," says economist James W. Hughes of Rutgers University. "2008 is certainly destined to be a lost housing year." The worst trouble is concentrated in California and Florida, where overbuilding and speculation drove prices beyond the reach of most buyers, and Ohio and Michigan, where failing local economies, job losses and shrinking populations mean there are more houses for sale than buyers.
In a handful of metropolitan areas -- Charlotte, N.C.; Milwaukee; Seattle; and New York -- the per-square-foot price of real estate still is growing (though far more slowly than at the market's peak), according to Radar Logic.

More Tuesday Male Beauty

On Matters of Sex, McCain is No Moderate

As this story from the Huffington Post indicates ( ), while John McCain likes to depict himself as a moderate, on issues relating to sex education, birth control and other issues concerning the freedom of citizens to be in charge of their own sexuality, McCain appears to be a warmed over version of the Chimperator. We truly need a president who recognizes that it is the 21st century and not circa 1960. It goes without saying that McCain opposes full equality and equal protections for LGBT citizens. We clearly do not need a Bush clone in the White House in terms of policing Americans’ bedrooms. Here some highlights from HP:

With detractors like Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, Laura Ingraham, Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity, Rick Santorum, Tom Delay and James Dobson, most thinking people might conclude that John McCain comes highly recommended. But just because John McCain is an enemy of some of our most cartoonish villians does not make him a friend. This is most true on reproductive health issues.

In fact, the Straight Talk Express has skidded off the road that most Americans drive. He is more extreme than even some who consider themselves "pro-life." For example, most Americans would be stunned to learn McCain won't -- or can't -- say whether he even supports the right to use contraception.

The Coburn that McCain has chosen as his mentor on all things reproductive is Senator Tom Coburn, R-Oklahoma, which is like having the Taliban head up the Office for Women's Initiatives. (Think that's an extreme comparison? Keep in mind Coburn
wants the death penalty for abortion providers.) President Bush rewarded Coburn for his good work by appointing him to co-chair, of all things, the Presidential Advisory Council on HIV/AIDS. When it comes to the preventing the spread of AIDS, Bush clearly prefers Right-thinking anti-condom crusaders to scientists. It would appear McCain does too. And might similarly reward Coburn -- to oversee HHS, perhaps.

McCain voted against legislation that would have required insurance coverage of prescription birth control and would also have provided more women with prenatal health care. (So, throw in anti-baby too. It's also worth noting that in 2004, McCain ranked among the 25 worst Senators for children, scoring 38%, according to the Children's Defense Fund Congressional Score Card.)

He's an unapologetic proponent of the failed abstinence-only approach as well. He voted against making "abstinence-only" programs medically accurate (the most authoritative study found that more than 80% of abstinence-only curricula, used by more than 2/3 of federal recipients, contains false, misleading, or distorted information.) He also wanted to take $75 million from the Maternal and Child Health Block Grant to launch an abstinence‐until-marriage program that prohibits sexually active teens from learning about birth control. Yet another time he tried to route one- third of all HIV/AIDS prevention funds to the completely ineffective "just say no to sex" programs.