Category Archives: Guest Author

Obama Endorses Same-Sex Marriage Initiatives in 3 States

Obama Officially Endorses Same-Sex Marriage Initiatives in
Three States

 

by Shaun Knittel
Best Gay News Magazine Staff Writer
 
On October 25, President Barack Obama officially endorsed
state ballot initiatives to legalize same-sex marriage in Washington state,
Maryland and Maine.  
 
Statements issued by the Obama campaign in those three
states urging voters to approve the marriage equality measures on their
respective November 6 ballots came five months after Obama became the first
U.S. president to express support for the right of same-sex couples to wed.
 
“While the president does not weigh in on every single
ballot measure in every state, the president believes in treating everyone
fairly and equally, with dignity and respect,” according to a statement in
Seattle by Paul Bell, press secretary for Obama’s campaign in Washington and
Oregon. “Washington’s same-sex marriage law would treat all Washington couples
equally, and that is why the President supports a vote to approve Referendum
74.”
 
Nearly identical endorsement statements were issued in
support of similar initiatives on the November 6 ballot in Maine and Maryland.
 
Six states and the District of Columbia have already
extended marriage rights to gay and lesbian couples, all brought about by court
rulings and legislative action.
 
Obama previously spoke out against a Minnesota measure that
would pass a constitutional amendment defining marriage as exclusively a union
between a man and a woman.
 
Read more at Chicago
Tribune

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Ernest Kohl is Topping the Charts Again

[EDITOR’S NOTE: Ernest Kohl made his name in Dance Music, carrying
the torch of late ’70s Disco, and embracing the Hi-NRG sounds of the
early ’80s when he recorded his first records. Thirty years later, he
not only keeps that spirit alive in his music, he also preserves the
memories of the movers and shakers he’s encountered along the way. This
is the first part of our recent conversations. Kelly Wayne Hughes]


Kohl’s current chart of choice is the Hit List at eurokdj.com where he is enjoying his fourth week at #1 with Anyone Who’s Ever Been In Love.

“It’s
more flattering to be voted on by the fans. Unlike a certain industry
publication where you can pay for chart position through a promoter. Get
your record into the top 30, you pay. Then get it in the top 10, pay
even more. The labels pay. And it’ll go higher and higher. And they pay
thousands to these promoters. It’s outrageous. The only true charts
there are the sales charts.”

In spite of frustrations with the music charts, Kohl has come to terms
with his three decades in the recording industry. And accepts the low
points as the price for the highs.

“I love musical theatre. I did
my first show at age seven. I auditioned at the Imperial Theatre. And
the next thing you know I’m in South Pacific playing little Jerome with Howard Keel and Jane Powell, singing ‘Dites-moi, pourquoi…’ Then Annie Get Your Gun. Then Camelot. Then Mame playing young Patrick. A national tour of GodspellMusic ManJoseph and the  Technicolor Dreamcoat. I played one of Joseph’s evil brothers. My best friend, Christian,” says Kohl with a smile, “would call that typecasting.”


Read the entire Part Interview by Kelly Wayne Hughes. Ernest talks about his Broadway debut in AvantGarde and the remastered soundtrack!


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Lady Gaga Slams Pope Benedict as France Prepares to Legalize Gay Marriage

Lady Gaga disses the Pope

 By Shaun Knittel
 Best Gay News Magazine Staff Writer 
 During a September 23 live interview with the French Radio station Europe 1, Lady Gaga slammed the recent comments by Pope Benedict XVI who said that gay marriage is a threat to the family and society.
 “I think that gay marriage is something that is going to happen, it must. We are not truly equal part of humanity if we not allowed to freely love one another,” said Lady Gaga, who performed her Born This Way Ball concert at Paris’s Stade de France, September 22.
“What the Pope thinks of being gay does not matter, it doesn’t matter to the world,” continued Gaga, who is known for her support of the LGBT community. “It matters to those who like the Pope and follow him. It’s not a reflection of all Christians, it is not a reflection of all religious people, it’s a point of view of one person.”
 “Vive la France, vive la liberation” she said in French. 
According to a recent poll, 65% of French people support giving gay and lesbian couples the right to marry.
Gay Star News reports that Lady Gaga’s final remarks are believed to also reflect the criticism of French LGBT rights advocates who stated that lack of fertility assistance in the proposed same-sex marriage bill of France, falls short of full equality.
“And to all the gay people here [in France]. May you can live and love each other until the end of time. And I hope you will have the human right to breed in an entirely equal manner,” she said.
On September 21, Pope Benedict XVI on Friday called on Roman Catholics in France to “defend marriage.” 
According to On Top Magazine, the Socialist government of President Francois Hollande is preparing to introduce legislation which would legalize gay marriage in the nation. Socialists recently won control of parliament, making passage of the legislation highly likely. 
Benedict said he believes such unions harm society. 
“The family is threatened by a conception of human nature that is proven to be defective,” Benedict told a group of French bishops visiting Castel Gandolfo, the pope’s summer residence located on the outskirts of Rome. “Marriage and the family are institutions that must be promoted and defended from every possible misrepresentation of their true nature, since whatever is harmful to them will in fact be injurious to society itself.” 
Benedict has previously opposed marriage equality in other parts of the world, including predominantly Catholic Spain and Argentina. 
The government is expected to unveil its bill to the French cabinet on October 31
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Belgrade Serbia Gay Pride is Canceled

Party leader 

says gay parade 

“will be canceled”

BELGRADE — United Serbia (JS) leader and MP Dragan
“Palma” Marković has said that the Belgrade Pride Parade, planned for
October 6, would not be held this year either.

It will be canceled, Marković told Belgrade-based Prva TV, “for security reasons.”

Belgrade Pride’s organizers recently announced that the parade would represent just one segment of a week-long event.

It is planned to take place from September 30 until October 6, and see
the LGBT community promote its rights in a series of events.

But Marković wondered “what the organizers planned to do for a week”.

Last year, the gay parade was not held in Belgrade after Interior
Minister banned the gathering three days before it was to take place,
along with all other gatherings planned for that weekend.

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Zac Efron is Flattered By His Gay Fans


By Shaun Knittel
Best Gay News Staff Writer

It’s not just millions of women around the world that love Zac Efron – and nobody knows that better
than Efron himself. Only, the 24-year-old actor who came to prominence in the Disney Channel’s High
School Musical, and stars in the upcoming southern thriller The Paperboy from director Lee Daniels, told the gay glossy The Advocate he doesn’t mind the attention at all.

“It’s very flattering,” he said, acknowledging his gay fan base in his first interview with an LGBT
publication.

“After High School Musical and Hairspray, I’ve always felt embraced by the gay community,” he continued. “And I feel incredibly grateful.”

“I think the gay audience related to my character Troy,” Efron said, referring to the character he played in the 2006 High School Musical film. “Because it really was a story of embracing who you are, no matter how different you might be, and not being afraid to show it. That’s a universal theme for everyone, but it specifically resonated with the gay community, and I felt very proud of that.”

Efron told The Advocate, “This is actually a very special interview for me. I’m extremely aware of the support I’ve gotten from you guys over the years and it’s amazing that it’s taken this long to sit down and actually discuss it, but please know that it hasn’t gone unappreciated. I’m so excited to be talking to you.”

In the interview, Efron recalls his time as a young musical theater kid and how being gay was never taboo in his social circles. “Being gay was just another way you can be. I never really had time to think about it or have any preconceived notions. I don’t judge anyone and I never have.”

“I might’ve been less aware of it back then,” he adds, “but without question I had gay role models.”

He says he would never take a role just for the sake of playing gay but is always looking for a role that’s challenging, different, and entails some risk, “so there’s no doubt in my mind that one of those characters will be gay at some point in the future.”

Efron, who identifies as straight, has had his sexual orientation questioned but maintains that he is not the least bit bothered by the rumors. “I don’t like to live in fear about things like rumors and backlash to begin with – that’s the way I was raised – but I just can’t see what’s so wrong about being gay.”

Efron even came out in support of same-sex marriage, telling The Advocate, “It’s an issue that affects so many people in my life – a lot of my close friends and some of the most influential people around me. I just want them all to be happy. It would make me so happy to see them able to live their lives and do what they want to do.”

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New Poll Shows More Americans “strongly support” Same-Sex Marriage

Religious Embrace
Helping Fuel Support
    for Gay Marriage, Expert
Says

Landmark Poll Finds
More Strong Support
                                                           Than Strong Opposition

For the first time, a new poll shows more Americans
“strongly support” same-sex marriage than “strongly oppose” it, a finding that
could be attributed to changes occurring within organized religions, says a
Presbyterian elder and lay preacher.

“For 2,000 years, religion has been the genesis of antipathy
toward homosexuals, but now, three major American denominations have approved
ordination of openly gay clergy,” says Paul Hartman, a retired PBS/NPR station
executive and author of The Kairos (
www.CarpeKairos.com), a novel that
imagines Jesus as gay.

“Gay has become the civil rights issue of the 21st century,”
he says.

The May survey of more than 1,000 adults found a dramatic
reversal from earlier surveys: more adults now “strongly support” same-sex
marriage rights (39 percent) than “strongly oppose” them (32 percent). 
Over all, Langer Research Associates says, 53 percent of Americans believe
same-sex marriages should be legalized – up from only 36 percent just six years
ago.

“Episcopalian, Lutheran and Presbyterian denominations have
overturned centuries of tradition in welcoming openly gay clergy,” Hartman says.
“There’s a growing realization that religion can and should help lead us all
toward a more mature understanding and acceptance of minority sexual
orientations.”

In 2012, he says, there is a new human rights landscape in
the United States. He cites these additional recent developments:

• The U.S. military joined 43 other
countries when it repealed “Don’t ask, don’t tell” and allowed openly-gay
service members.

• Same-sex marriages are now legal
in six states and the District of Columbia. Three other states — Washington,
Maryland and California — have same-sex marriage under active consideration.
Eleven more offer “civil union”-type status for same-sex couples.

• A federal appeals court in Boston
recently struck down the Defense of Marriage Act (which defines marriage as
“one man, one woman”), making consideration by the U.S. Supreme Court almost
certain.

• Dr. Robert Spitzer, one of the
last nationally-respected scholars whose studies lent credence to “gay
reparative” therapies, recently offered a retraction and apology to the gay
community.

“Unfortunately, the occasionally hateful crowd still
resonates with a very small group of people, including those headed by preacher
Fred Phelps and congregants, who continue to make news as they picket the
funerals of soldiers and celebrities,” Hartman says.

Western cultures’ condemnation of same-sex love appears to
have originated from Judeo-Christian scriptures, but contemporary biblical
scholarship amends old interpretations, he says.

“That’s why I wanted to tell a religion-based suspense story
about homophobia,” Hartman says. “It addresses fear of all kinds, because in
passage after biblical passage, scripture tells humans who are facing change,
sickness, alienation, death, and everything else: ‘fear not.’  It applies
to homophobia, as well.”

About Paul
Hartman

Paul Hartman is a retired PBS/NPR station executive with a
passion for biblical history. He is a Presbyterian elder, a lay preacher and a
Dead Sea Scrolls aficionado. Hartman, a father and grandfather, confesses he is
a lifelong fear-fighter.

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7 Year Old Gay Boy in Love with Glee’s Blaine

I just came across a posting from Huffington Post, that done in Feb. Ameila writes, “When Your 7-Year Old Son Announces I’M GAY”.

Considering that my son has a longstanding crush on Glee‘s
Blaine and regularly refers to him as “my boyfriend,” I thought there
was a fair chance that he would someday say, “I’m gay.” But my kid is
only 7 years old. I figured I had a few years before we crossed that
threshold (if we ever did), probably when he was 14 or 15. I never
thought it would happen this soon.

Six months ago “gay” wasn’t even a word in my son’s vocabulary. He
has always known that some of our male friends are married to men and
some of our female friends to women, and it is such a normal part of his
life that he never needed a special word to describe them. When he did
notice the word and asked what it meant, I told him that when boys want
to marry boys and girls want to marry girls, we call that “gay.” He
didn’t seem very interested and quickly went off to do something else
more exciting than a vocabulary lesson with his mom.

This is a great READ!  At  Huffington Post.

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Davey Waveys Life in a Day…at Sundance

Unless you have been
under rock the last 5 years,
you should know
who DAVEY WAVEY is.
 

The pre-Scott Herman  fitness hottie who is more delicious than Mom’s Apple Pie! And his blog Break The Illusion  is uber popular.

The 27 year old says, “I assumed this physical form to embark on a journey of peace and love.

Though I’m a bit of a nomad, traveling the world from city to city and town to town, my current location is Rhode Island, USA. For a career, I’m a certified personal trainer  and  have a fitness blog, Davey Wavey Fitness .


My life’s mission is to 1.) share my love with the world 2.) teach others about the pervasive oneness of this perfect universe and 3.) learn, grow and develop from all my experiences and all my teachers.


Though this blog started as a personal diary, it has grown into a vehicle for achieving this mission. It has become a gathering point for people from all over the world to share ideas and connect in a safe, loving space. I’m honored to be the moderator of this community, and I invite you to join in the adventure of self-discovery and exploration unfolding in these pages.”




 It is his Videos which are getting international attention now.  And I predict, this attention could bring him much deserved fame.  You have  to love the whole Web 2.0 movement. When I grew up, and I am dating myself (gasp!) we didn’t have YouTube, Twitter or even the Internet! The world is an oyster now. Anyone can be their own PR agent and get seen by millions. Bloggers and Vloggers are becoming the stars of today.

YouTube invited  Davey  to Park City Utah for the week, for the Sundance Film Festival,  because one of his  video clips is being used in Kevin MacDonald and Ridley Scott’s documentary, Life in a Day .

Life in a Day is the result of director Kevin MacDonald’s plea to the YouTube community to record one day of their lives – July 24th, 2010 – with the ultimate aim of patching them all together. The call was heard, and 80,000 videos were submitted for selection, totalling 4,500 hours of raw footage.

Produced by Ridley Scott, the footage was eventually cut down to the 90 minute feature that is garnering raves from reviewers and audiences for it’s moving and poignant scenes harnessed from everyday life, by everyday people. Encompassing the most mundane daily activities to the most exhilarating and saddest experiences, the film operates with a kind of rhythm that can change mood on a dime, and can elicit a broad smile as quickly as it can have the viewer choking back the tears .

The movie premiered at Sundance this past week and streamed live on YouTube.  And you can watch  his  MEET THE FILM MAKER interview . The actual film will be released sometime in 2011.

Congratulations Davey!!

Davey on YouTube          Davey on Facebook



Best Gay News
  

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We Live In A Straight World – By Edward A. Palmer

I was assigned to cover the Midwest Bisexual Lesbian Gay Transgender Ally College Conference; (MBLGTACC). Having never heard of such a gathering, especially one with an excessively long title, I was completely unaware of what my day had in store. I arrived with no preconceived notions; I was a clean slate, open for any sort of knowledge that was going to be thrown my way. With this conference I found that there is so much more that I need to learn not only about my community, but most importantly, myself. 

     It was held at Indiana University, bringing gay folks from all around the Midwest. Chicago and Indianapolis seemed to be that largest represented cites. Gays and lesbians, who had traveled hundreds of miles, from the smallest of towns, simply wanted a sense of solidarity. They wanted to know they weren’t alone. Loneliness and isolation is something that plagues us as a people. I thought my generation had somehow eradicated that, apparently I’ve been incredibly naïve. 

     The workshops were an important part of the weekend; they ranged from global activism to learning how to relate to other gay people. Everyone that I spoke with said networking was the most important concept. We as gay people still don’t know how to deal with one another. We’re not taught about our sexuality, it’s always been learned through trial an error. Most of these young college students were oblivious to the idea of what it means to be gay. These workshops hopefully fill the gaps. Mandy Greene, a sophomore from Wisconsin, said that straight people can turn on any television show and learn how the sexes relate.

This struck me as incredibly funny and sad; we travel hundreds of miles just to learn how to speak to one another.
  
     To take the edge off, there was entertainment. A hilarious drag quartet named “The Kinsey Sicks” were present. There were also stand up comedians such as Marga Gomez and Jason Stuart. Creator of The L Word: , Rose Troche was a keynote speaker, and vital part of the conference. The Valentine’s Day dance was aptly named The Black and White Affair. Although it was nice too see people take control of their lives, it was refreshing to have fun and enjoy the unity. Surprisingly people from South Dakota can dance.  

   

  My final destination was the Kinsey Institute . For those of you who have been under a rock, Alfred Kinsey did ground breaking work with sexuality in the 1940’s, resulting in the controversial publication, “Sexual Behavior in the Human Male”. He invented what is known as the Kinsey scale. 0 is deemed completely heterosexual, while 6 is considered completely homosexual. Most human beings are somewhere in the middle.   

     My amazing tour guide Garry Milius showed me the pre- stonewall exhibit. Seeing the art showed me how far we have come. When this art was being created it was a crime to be gay. You could be incarcerated on suspicion, which lead to police being paid off. We were forced to become an “underground scene”.  This “art” became the manifestation of our revolution.

     The photographs, paintings and sculptures were so raw. Large erect penises seemed to be the favorite muse of those days. Kinsey made it clear that when something is made taboo it can become a fetish. As a lover of old photography this was turning out to be my favorite event of the day. 

     With all this diverse information I was wondering how I was going to present this. Honestly I was scared. On the ride home with my favorite photographer, we discussed the whole event and how it probably meant so many different things to many different people. The one thing we could agree upon is that equality has always been a struggle in America. Although there is an incredibly sad history and a dismal present, we as a people are resilient, like every other minority, we will survive.       
        
     With this wonderful event, it’s been proven that we are poets, actors, writers, soldiers, activist; we are everything you can put your mind to. We now have to learn from our history to know where we are going. Never forget those who have gotten us to where we are today. Have successful relationships, families and even children. Things change slowly, but they always change. Conferences are a need even in these times, not only for the knowledge and solidarity, but because we live in a straight world.
 
 
Edward Palmer     palmer5716 (at)  sbcglobal.net

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