Friday, June 29, 2007

Marines' Fashion Police Back Off

Celebrity stud muffin and Marine antiwar activist Adam Kokesh got a break from the Marines over his alleged fashion violation:

Marines drop case against Iraq veteran

By HEATHER HOLLINGSWORTH, Associated Press Writer

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - The Marines won't kick out an Iraq war veteran who made anti-war statements in a speech and wore part of his uniform at a protest, the service said Friday, despite a recommendation to discharge him early.

An investigating officer had recommended in May that Liam Madden, 22, of Boston receive an other-than-honorable discharge, the worst discharge possible under non-court martial conditions.

Madden is part of the Individual Ready Reserve, which consists mainly of those who have left active duty but still have time remaining on their eight-year military obligations. He is scheduled to be discharged in 2010.

Madden was accused of making "disloyal statements" during a speech in February in New York in which he accused President Bush of betraying service members and called the fighting in Iraq a "war crime." The speech was posted on the Internet.

Madden also was accused of a uniform violation for wearing a camouflage, button-down shirt and jeans at a demonstration in Washington in January.

The Marines said in a news release that they were dropping the case because they had "received sufficient indication" from Madden that he would no longer wear his uniform when engaged in political activities. They also determined that his statements did not warrant further action.

Madden insists he never reached an agreement with the Marines and planned to keep wearing his uniform at protests. He did write in an e-mail to the Marine Corps on Tuesday that he would agree to stop wearing his uniform at protests if the corps put in writing "that my statements are neither disloyal nor inaccurate."

Madden said he never received the letter he requested on Marine Corps letterhead and had no further conversations with the Marines.

"I think it's a total victory," Madden said, speaking on his cell phone from Columbia, S.C., where he is participating in a bus tour of East Coast military installations. "The country is on our side, and it really puts the Marine Corps in a bad light if they try to intimidate" us.

The Marines did not immediately return phone calls seeking comment.

Madden was one of at least three Marines investigated for their protest activities. Another, Adam Kokesh of Washington, D.C., was kicked out of the Marines earlier this month with a general discharge for wearing his uniform during a demonstration and using an obscenity in an e-mail to an investigating officer.

Kokesh's attorney said the other-than-honorable discharge could affect health benefits, but Madden said his attorneys did not think it would because he previously received an honorable discharge from active duty.

An other-than-honorable discharge would affect employment prospects and ability to obtain a security clearance, Madden's attorneys said.

Since clothing caused such a ruckus, my suggestion for a fundraiser would be the AntiWar Marine Hunks Shirtless Calendar.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Ex Librum

Just in time for post-Pride:Former leaders of ex-gay ministry in U.S. apologize for "bringing harm"

Three former leaders of an international ministry that counsels gays to change their sexual orientation apologized for their efforts, saying that though they acted sincerely, their message had caused isolation, shame and fear.

The former leaders of the interdenominational Christian organization Exodus International said Wednesday they had all, over time, become disillusioned with the group's ideas and concerned about what they described as the wrenching human toll of such gay conversion efforts.

"Some who heard our message were compelled to try to change an integral part of themselves, bringing harm to themselves and their families," the three, including former Exodus co-founder Michael Bussee, said in a joint written statement presented at a news conference in Hollywood. "Although we acted in good faith, we have since witnessed the isolation, shame, fear and loss of faith that this message creates."

The news conference was held in a courtyard outside an office of the Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center. It was timed to coincide with the opening of Exodus' annual conference, which is being held this week at Concordia University in Irvine and expected to draw about 1,000 people.

We all recall the stories of John Paulk and other ex-gays who "slipped." But did you know that I turned John Paulk straight? Well, not exactly. He hit on me at a gay bar when I was as Ohio State. I spurned him, the poor thing. I know, breaking hearts nationwide...

My favorite ex-ex-gay has got to be Ross Hayduk. After coming out and surviving the Exodus treatment, he moved to San Francisco, did a lot of work with Team San Francisco, competed in a few Gay Games in track and then powerlifting, and is now a Sister of Perpetual Indulgence! He's included in the documentary, Be Real. I'd say he's made up for gay time lost.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Gabriel's Horn

Gabriel Rotello rips Andrew Sullivan a new heiny, as if his hadn't already been ripped enough from his well-publicized proclivities.

Here's his Huffington Post article:

It's Gay Pride Month. That means parades, floats, garden parties -- and more articles by Andrew Sullivan proclaiming the 'end of AIDS.'

It's one of the most shockingly irresponsible claims ever made in the context of gay men and AIDS, and it represents a mindset whose consequences couldn't be more tragic.

The current issue of Seattle's The Stranger contains Andrew's latest installment -- a historical essay about the year 1996 entitled 'The Plague Ends.' It describes how the AIDS epidemic for gay men supposedly vanished that year when combination therapies appeared and began saving countless lives.

Andrew recounts that he wrote a similar piece for the Sunday New York Times as early as 1996, the year in question. He complains that back then he was ''flayed alive" by AIDS prevention activists for writing a piece that said "the obvious:" that the new medications were "an end to AIDS-as-plague."

Another bit:

For the rising generation of gay men, the AIDS epidemic could have ended, except for the occasional stray infection here and there.

But that's not what happened. The opposite happened.

As the meds came into use, people began celebrating. Opinion leaders -- most notably Andrew Sullivan -- recklessly proclaimed the "end of AIDS" in major venues like The New York Times. Mainstream journalists took their cue and largely dropped the subject.

Basically, Gabe is scolding Sully for repeating what he did before, in essence, ignoring anything but his own self-centered experience, i.e, 'I got my meds, so everything's fine now.'

You should go to HP and read the rest, including comments like this:

"Sullivan is the ultimate narcissist. He only turned against Bush when Bush supported a Constitutional amendment banning gay marriage -- the issue on which Andrew made his name -- as if there weren't countless other reasons to oppose him.

Sullivan wrote nasty sarcastic remarks about "bears" in San Francisco. Then he turned into a bear himself and declared bears the most authentic type of gay men. He started using testosterone and wrote an article full of scientific inaccuracies.

I could go on. The point is he never sees beyond the tip of his own nose. The only reason he receives as much attention as he does is his role as a freak -- a conservative, religious gay man. He can present himself as "mainstream," but don't make the mistake of looking at pictures of his anatomy on various websites. You will see that he really is a freak."

And in the interests of full disclosure, back in the 89-91 era of Sully's rise to fame as the token gay pontificator of the reichwing (during which time he did nothing to assist in the fight against AIDS, while Rotello was helpful in organizing fundraisers, promoting AIDS activism and prevention, and a lot more), I was working for Rotello at the now-infamous OutWeek magazine. Here's Gabriel's mini-history, with a few covers.


PR, Sweetie, PR!!!

While handing out postcards and stickers for my book on Sunday, it seemed almost everyone recognized my cover model, Patricio. I'd say he's more popular than the book itself. (Hands off; he's got a boyfriend).

The book is getting a tad of PR, sweetie. Jim at featured my book.

And -happy day- not unlike Shirley MacLaine, who understudied the lead in The Pajama Game, only to shine when she was a quick replacement - I'm featured as the Swag Tuesday giveaway on Joe.My.God's blog!

If you haven't visited there, you're probably new to the blogosphere. Go visit and catch up on all things Manhattanish.

So, the winner (randomly picked by Joe, I think) will get a signed copy of Cyclizen, plus a few stickers, and I dunno, maybe some leftover Mardi Gras beads from Pride.

Sunday, June 24, 2007


Another LGBTQ etc Pride under the belt. Twas fun to ride, but yet another immense gap behind the very festive Mikes on Bikes couldn't be filled by a few loop-de-loopers among us. I don't know what happened, but it's not the first time. If the more serious LifeCyclists (the contingent behind us) wanted to distance themselves from our frivolity, they accomplished that!

This is hardly a comprehensive array of images. One can't easily be a participant and a photojournalist. Just some of the more festive of folks and friends.

For more San Francisco coverage, has a nice gallery of pics.

CNN has an entire series of articles, polls, etc.

For worldwide coverage, visit Yahoo's Associated Press image gallery. Feel free to post a link to your online pics in the comments section.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Think Pink!

It's Pink Saturday, the day before the big ole Pride March, among other events going on.

And that means two big pink events, the annual installation of the Pink Triangle high atop Twin Peaks, which seems to have gone well. Here's a slide show and photos.

This year's grand marshals and special guests, like cast members of Noah's Arc, including Wilson Cruz; Marine Eric Alva, Styx bass player Chuck Panozzo, politicians Carole Migden, Tom Ammiano, Bevan Dufty and Mark Leno, attended. You gotta hand it to these folks who always seem to make time for these celebrations and official events.

I haven't been up to Twin Peaks in years. It is quite a view, and today was wonderful for clear skies.

I stopped by Civic Center to peruse the booth-orama the day before the big invasion. Lots of the same stuff. I won't weave through that tomorrow. I did get there just in time to see the cast of the upcoming San Jose production of Hair sing a few songs. Saw a few friends and acquaintances.

Funny to hear those songs sung now that I have such short hair, and may have forgone my groovy attitudes. I was in a 1980 production of Hair at Kent State University as a freshman. I wore a wig head bad, groovy jeans and brown suede fringe boots. Ah, memories.

Tonight, it's off to see RuPaul in StarrBooty at the Castro (nearing the end of the Frameline filmfest), after which all of Castro Street will be crowded with Pink Saturday revelers. The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence had sent media emails asking for a "news blackout" like that would help control crowds. Silly.

Also silly, I dressed up my bike for tomorrow, with Mardi Gras beads and posterized versions of my Cyclizen stickers. A few have stuck to bike racks around town, but in most cases they get torn off. Not exactly the most legal form of PR, so I've got postcards with lil stickers of info for my July 18 gig at A Different Light bookstore on it.

I've been putting postcards on bikes around town, specifically where bikes are parked in, um, gay areas or at events. We'll see if it helps. If you're one of those cyclizens who are visiting here because of a postcard, hi!

Tomorrow, it's riding with Mikes on Bikes, reading at 3pm at the Writer's Village (whose stage was barely set up, but reversed, with City Hall behind it this year), and perhaps a visit to City Hall for the big Pink Magazine party.

It'll be nice to get inside amid all the heat and hubbub. Then back home to take a break, and go to a party or two.

Tomorrow I won't be hanging with three of my best friends, who are all leaving town, the party poopers. But a few other pals will ride bikes as well. 15 years of gayocity here in SF; I never celebrate it the same way twice.


Fun update: Starrbooty was exactly what I'd hoped; a raunchy, over the top, silly fun camp fest, with drag queens galore, even a few porn dudes showing their boners, and a wonderful tribute to exploitation flicks. RuPaul, aka R.A. Charles, also wrote the script and composed the wacky groovy tunes.

At the post-film Q&A, I asked Ru if and when the soundtrack would be available. Ru said it would be soon downloadable on iTunes, but not released as a CD. "That's so 20th- century!" she quipped.

Outside, Pink Saturday was a cold blustery drunken mob of people trying to find each other on their cell phones. I went home. Gotta rest up for tomorrow's gayocity.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Pride-athlon 07

Mainstream media takes a look at "the gays" this time of year.

Here's a little round up:

CNN on a family, and changes, with some interesting sidebars;

SF Chronicle: Elizabeth Edwards will speak at a morning Alice B. Toklas LGBT Democratic Club event at the Francis Drake Hotel. Wait for the rightwingers to call her a brownie-eating socialist as soon as they find out who Toklas was...

Brazil's gay pride drew millions, and bazillions...

UPI says it was only "thousands."

Rightwing media claims that the media coverage of Brazil's Pride is "wildly over-stimulated" (sic) while numbers for their anti-abortion rallies is small. Durn libral media!

Here in San Francisco, the parade won't be covered live. KRON 4 is afraid some nearly naked leather mama will disrupt their FCC license with an exposed boob. KRON will air an "edited" version at 7pm.

Thanks, Janet Jackson, you boob.

Actually, it won't be that bad, being able to watch it later that day.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Sad Albert

I hate fakes.

I hate literary fakes.

I particularly hate pretentious wierd-ass literary fakes.

And "J.T. Leroy" topped those charts.

Laura Albert, the fraud who penned books as J.T. Leroy, whined and bawled in a NYC court room today as she was sued by film producers who gullibly bought the film rights to one of her fraudulent books, "Sarah."

I never liked J.T. Leroy's books. It smelled like a lie to me, long before s/he was outed definitively by Stephen Beachy in this New York Magazine article.

In fact, other authors like Dennis Cooper and Kevin Killian read
passages of "Leroy"'s books at literary events. What did they know? (See Killian's comments, and David Ehrenstein's re: Cooper).

Who knew? I don't care. I could smell the lies a mile off. Celebrities like Garbage lead singer Shirley Manson and U2's Bono are said to have been fans of the fake books.

Now, Albert has been caught. The books are fiction, and bad fiction at that. Stealing the life of abused kids and passing it off as memoir is a literary crime.

As an author who's never received a hundredth of the enormous advances doled out by gullible publishers to fakes like Albert, it's easy to be resentful, and see why quality fiction so rarely gets published. Editors seem to prefer hype and sensation over quality.

For example, if I'd fraudulently penned my first novel, PINS as written by "Joey Nicci," a fifteen-year-old gay high school wrestler, maybe I'd be getting awards and fame and adoration by easily fooled celebrities.

But I haven't, because I didn't, and I won't, because I'm not a fraud like Laura Albert is.

And yet, the literary snobs seem to still be scooping up the dung doled out by Albert, as shown here in a lengthy Q&A in The Paris Review.

"One thing people often comment to me about the characters in JT LeRoy’s books is that they strive for goodness, even in a world where all their experience contradicts this," Albert is quoted.

Yeah, you strove for goodness, in the form of fat advance and royalty checks, while real authors get shafted.

"I never saw it as a hoax," she says.

Oh, really? Calling up writers as you pretend to be "JT Leroy" and getting them to read for you at bookstores; not a hoax?

Making shifty deals with publishers to have them write checks made out to you, when there was no JT Leroy; not a hoax?

Dressing up your gender-blurry pals as "JT Leroy" for public appearances; not a hoax?

You might want to take off those google-eyed sunglasses and get a reality check, instead of another fraud's royalty check.

I hope she gets sued back into the poverty from which she sprang. Karma's a bitch, Laura.

While we're in Israel...

Israeli court allows gay pride parade in Jerusalem

20 Jun 2007 2
Source: Reuters

By Corinne Heller

JERUSALEM, June 20 (Reuters) - Israel's High Court gave the go-ahead on Wednesday for a Gay Pride parade in Jerusalem, rejecting last-ditch appeals by conservative Jews who wanted the event scrapped.

Police said thousands of officers would be on hand to secure Thursday's event against possibly violent protests by Jews who, like many devout Muslims and Christians, view homosexuality as an abomination.

Disputes over whether to hold the parade in the holy city have showcased one of many divides in Israeli society and raised questions on how to ensure the religious nature of Jerusalem, sacred to the three major monotheisms, is not compromised.

Civil liberties groups have argued that the annual event signifies pluralism in a city that Israel calls its undivided capital -- though that status has never been recognised abroad.

"The question of 'why in Jerusalem' is not a question. It is the same question as letting women vote," said Dana Olmert, a lesbian daughter of Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert.

"The gay parade is a political event and it is an expression of a political stance. Political activity is something you do, and we do it without needing to ask permission," she told Israel's Army Radio in an interview.

The event has been held in Jerusalem since 2001, but was relocated to a closed a stadium last year due to security concerns. Muslim and Christian leaders have also signalled their opposition to the march in the past.

The Jewish population in Jerusalem is mainly religious. More devout Jews, who have more children, move to the city every year as opposed to its secular population, which is declining.

An ultra-Orthodox Jewish protester stabbed and wounded three marchers in a Gay Pride parade in Jerusalem in 2005 despite a heavy police presence. He received a lengthy prison sentence.

Israel also hosts an annual Gay Pride parade in Tel Aviv, which is mostly secular, without controversy. About 20,000 people attended one last week.


But things turned ugly rather quickly:

Arrests at Jerusalem gay parade

A Gay Pride march in Jerusalem has been taking place amid tight security, sparking fierce protests among the holy city's religious communities.

An ultra-Orthodox Jewish man was arrested for planning to bomb the parade, Israeli police said.

Fifteen other people were arrested for throwing stones at police after Israel's High Court rejected an appeal by religious groups to ban the march.

More than 7,000 police were deployed to secure the parade to prevent clashes.

Israeli police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said officers found an explosive device in the bag of the alleged bomb plotter.

"He admitted he planned on planting it on the route of the parade today," Mr Rosenfeld said.

Parade protests

About 2,000 people joined the march, holding bright balloons, singing and holding posters of Nelson Mandela and the Dalai Lama, the Associated Press news agency reported.

More at LINK

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Border Lines

A true highlight of the Frameline International LGBT Film festival last night was The Bubble. Directed and co-written by Eytan Fox, it's a dramatic, painful, sexy and sad tale of an Israeli and Palestinian gay love affair torn by personal and political conflicts.

There were rumors of a protest to take place at the screening. Some people (anti-Zionist, anti-occupation, pro-Palestinians, of course) apparently stood outside handing out flyers critiquing Frameline for allowing the Israeli Consulate to fund the director's trip to San Francisco. There are other issues of Frameline's support from Israel. Fortunately, as Fox asked before the screening when he was introduced, nobody interrupted the screening.

When Fox's previous film Jossi and Jagger was screened a few years ago (a love affair between two Israeli soldiers), immediately after the film, a couple of people waddled up onstage and unfurled a barely legible banner they'd hidden on the side of the Castro Theatre. They stood there, stupidly while a few other anti-Israel people shouted this and that, until others just shut them up. Outside, a few others were screaming like idiots. It wasn't what one could call good PR.

Having done some rather well-orchestrated protests in my ACT UP days, I can only be relieved that these people adjusted their doofy techniques. The fact that a feature film about gay men in this conflicted part of the world got funding from the Israeli government and the Israeli Army is an accomplishment.

As Fox said, the timing of its release last year in Israel was unfortunate, as more violence broke out a week after it was in theatres. Watching and supporting the film was seen as counter to the rise of nationalism there. The Bubble recounts the atmosphere of denial in Tel Aviv.

It's odd that gay and lesbian people would be so bent on protesting a well-made film while supporting Palestine, which has yet to recognize LGBT people at all. But consistency isn't the forté of such protests.

Yes, Israel has done awful horrendous things with bombings and killings. But so have the many Palestinian suicide bombers and return attacks. It's much larger than I'm able to discuss here.

I just fund it appropriate that here in San Francisco, the biggest liberal "bubble" in America, people still sometimes seem out of touch with reality.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Pace, Pride, Purpose

Chimpoleon should ride his bike more often.

He's still smarting from his multi-city tour trip ("Chimpy Goes to G8"), where he was basically the most hated of all (s)elected rulers.

Protests, protests, protests in Germany. The usual virulent hatred toward cabalistic elite rulers continues. Remember when one riot was so shocking to the world? Today, they're commonplace.

I don't know why Chimpy went to Rome to visit Pope Nazinger, other than to perhaps share a meal of infant blood. 10,000 caribinieri and other police forces were needed to quell the hundreds of thousands of people protesting his presence.

I recall the cute caribinieri guarding the crumbling Colosseum in 2000 as the World Pride Roma parade passed it by. So many cuties; many of them still a tad fascist, but hey. They're nice to look at.

In other news, Massachusetts is going full speed ahead with gay marriages, specifically, banning a century-old law that prohibits out-of-state residents from marrying.

It's "an avalanche of lawmakers switching sides in one of the most suspenseful legislative battles in recent history," said the Boston Herald of this decision.

Gee, if it goes through America in the order of statehood, Hawaii will have gay marriage in 170 years or so. Until then, Mass. will become the Niagara Falls of the gay 21st century.

I don't have cable, but for now, YouTube still shows the best of clips, like The Colbert Report, which still makes hilarious spot-on points about us "homosexuals."

So, I get a lot of spam on my oldest ISP email address. Some of it is from the GOP. Amazing crap they spew out. I particularly relished closet case Ken Mehlmen's blather, and his recent departure, shortly after he was outed. Funny, that.

Of course, the GOPigs continue their attacks on Speaker Nancy Pelosi - my congresswoman- and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid for daring to criticize the massive incompetence in Iraq. Here's a snippet from the GOPuppets:

During an interview with liberal bloggers, he called Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Peter Pace "incompetent." He made similar comments about General David Petreaus, the man leading our troops in Iraq.

There is room for him to express reasonable disagreement about our path forward in Iraq. But to attack our military is unacceptable. To attack General Petraeus, the man actually leading our troops on the ground, is reprehensible. And to call General Pace, a man who has served our nation for his entire adult life with honor and distinction, 'incompetent' is beyond the pale.

Why would Reid attack our men and women in uniform? One simple reason: to play catch-up with the fringes of his liberal base.

This blather, penned by Robert M. "Mike" Duncan (which name is it, dude?) is as wonderfully ill-timed as all the other GOP spam.

Pace just got fired, Reid is right, and the GOPers continue to support, in fact ALL GOP candy-dates support Don't Ask, Don't Tell, despite rising resistance to it, and support toward overturning it.

For Pace to call homo behavior "immoral" may have been what got him canned, but I doubt it. He told Chimpy the troop surge was wrong, and Chimpy eventually cans anybody who doesn't think his asshate ideas are brilliant.

I got to speak to someone whose opinions about Pace and the war are more relevant; Eric Alva.

He's the gay Marine who was the first one injured in the Iraq invasion. Now he's the default interviewee on major media following the Pace utterance. And I just interviewed him yesterday, as he was flying from one city to another on the tour of appearances sponsored by HRC's campaign to overturn DADT.

If GOPigs want to castigate Sen. Reid about insults, they should take a look at how they insult brave Marines like Alva, who was honored for his sacrifice - specifically, his right leg. To say a man like him shouldn't serve is an insult to him and the other estimated 85,000 gay and lesbian troops now serving.

He was great to talk with, and my interview will be in the Pride edition of the Bay Area Reporter, out Thursday, June 21.

Eric will be in San Francisco speaking on the main stage at SF Pride, probably sitting on the back seat of convertible in the parade, and at a few other events. You really need to see or meet this guy to know how important overturning DADT is.

Talk to a gay or lesbian vet. Put your politics about the war/invasion/occupation aside. I did, for a while. I find it hard to support anyone who goes there willingly to do Chimpy's bidding.

But I'll argue for their right to do so. They sign up to defend out country, and it's not their fault the higher-ups are evil or incompetent.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Pride prep; Filmfest

Cribbing from my own paper today: Roger Brigham's sports column has updates on upcoming events, including Mikes on Bikes at the Pride march, and SF T&FC's track meet in July, both of which I'll be doing.

This week's Out and About essay focuses on the SF Int. L&G filmfest. Cute pic, eh? Between the nude pic lawsuit, and the naked cover of the arts section, it's a rather skin-ny issue.

Okay, back to work, on the Pride issue! Eek!

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

ACT UP LA = Photojournalism History

Drkrm Gallery is hosting an exhibit of photographs by Chuck Stallard. A historic collection of ACT UP LA's shining moments - in glorious black and white- if you're in LA, be sure to see it.

I recall meeting Chuck in 1990 when I did a show at Tim Miller's Highways. I joined a crew of guys like Chuck, Marcus Nazario and others who painted murals all over the walls of a next door warehouse, where they had a huge huge benefit dance party, and Chuck was part of it.

Go see his pics at a cool gallery.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Pride Ride

The throngs will come early this Pride, since it's on June 24 here in San Francisco. A few people I've talked to don't even go that often, blaming crowds as icky. Oh, the poor dears.

Well, I learned that about ten prides ago. The easiest and most fun is to march, er, ride, on a bike, specifically, with Mikes on Bikes, the rowdy, funny group of queer cyclists who usually follow the Dykes on Bikes, gay cycling groups, and LifeCycle riders.

With free handy valet parking courtesy of the SF Bike Coalition right behind the Asian Art Museum, you can chill out in the Faerie Village or, just across from the little treed park at Civic Center, take in some comfortable SEATS in the shade (great place to eat lunch) at the Writer's Village.

It's right behind the Orpheum Theatre, and I'll be reading from Cyclizen for the very first time, in the afternoon. At 3pm. Be there. Relax.

You know, even despite the crowds, it really is great to at least endure it all for some part of the day. It's kind of a gay rite of passage. Like the photo of Jim on his green bike (see top) who looped around the street rails with me, as the crowd cheered, while somewhere way back there, a certain other group delayed the parade by a few minutes. Guaranteed not to happen again, and it hasn't!

Some pals, as shown here from previous years, really like to ride bikes and dress up. And that's what makes it fun. Show up downtown around 10am on one of the side streets a few blocks west of the Embarcadero.

And have fun! Wear sunblock!

For more Pride pics, visit these Sports Complex 2003 column, "Prideathlon."

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Finish Line

The AIDS LifeCycle finished yesterday, and thousands of riders culminated their journey with a big finish line parade in their new T-shirts. They also had a candlelight vigil on a beach for those lost to AIDS.

One of the many celebrities who rode was actor Chad Allen, shown here.

My friend Seth's pod messages tell of his journey (including getting sick around Santa Cruz!), but he like most all others, made it through. Unfortunately, some message boards filled up, and it's hard to show support while they're so far away.

But they'll be back, and as usual riding up near the front of the SF Pride parade, Sunday, Jun 24 (a very early pride this year), right behind the Dykes on Bikes.

Saturday, June 9, 2007

Gay Bomb bombed

This is old news, with the usual comic comments, but now it's confirmed, and just as stupid as Arkansas Republican Party asshat Dennis Milligan, who said "we need more terror acts in America to wake people up."

Well, fucktwit, why not just ask your bosses to arrange that? They did such a good job in 2001.

Pentagon Confirms It Sought To Build A 'Gay Bomb'

Hank Plante

(CBS 5) BERKELEY A Berkeley watchdog organization that tracks military spending said it uncovered a strange U.S. military proposal to create a hormone bomb that could purportedly turn enemy soldiers into homosexuals and make them more interested in sex than fighting.

Pentagon officials on Friday confirmed to CBS 5 that military leaders had considered, and then subsquently rejected, building the so-called "Gay Bomb."

Edward Hammond, of Berkeley's Sunshine Project, had used the Freedom of Information Act to obtain a copy of the proposal from the Air Force's Wright Laboratory in Dayton, Ohio.

As part of a military effort to develop non-lethal weapons, the proposal suggested, "One distasteful but completely non-lethal example would be strong aphrodisiacs, especially if the chemical also caused homosexual behavior."

The documents show the Air Force lab asked for $7.5 million to develop such a chemical weapon.

"The Ohio Air Force lab proposed that a bomb be developed that contained a chemical that would cause enemy soliders to become gay, and to have their units break down because all their soldiers became irresistably attractive to one another," Hammond said after reviwing the documents.

"The notion was that a chemical that would probably be pleasant in the human body in low quantities could be identified, and by virtue of either breathing or having their skin exposed to this chemical, the notion was that soliders would become gay," explained Hammond.

The Pentagon told CBS 5 that the proposal was made by the Air Force in 1994.

"The Department of Defense is committed to identifying, researching and developing non-lethal weapons that will support our men and women in uniform," said a DOD spokesperson, who indicated that the "gay bomb" idea was quickly dismissed.

However, Hammond said the government records he obtained suggest the military gave the plan much stronger consideration than it has acknowledged.

"The truth of the matter is it would have never come to my attention if it was dismissed at the time it was proposed," he said. "In fact, the Pentagon has used it repeatedly and subsequently in an effort to promote non-lethal weapons, and in fact they submitted it to the highest scientific review body in the country for them to consider."

Military officials insisted Friday to CBS 5 that they are not currently working on any such idea and that the past plan was abandoned.

Gay community leaders in California said Friday that they found the notion of a "gay bomb" both offensive and almost laughable at the same time.

"Throughout history we have had so many brave men and women who are gay and lesbian serving the military with distinction," said Geoff Kors of Equality California. "So, it's just offensive that they think by turning people gay that the other military would be incapable of doing their job. And its absurd because there's so much medical data that shows that sexual orientation is immutable and cannot be changed."

Pretty astounding, considering it was planned at the dawn of the idiotic "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy.

The real bombshell is the number of LGB (I don't know of any T's) people kicked out of the military at a time when they're hiring convicted felons.

For more tactical responses to this heinous policy, be sure to visit the GLBT Historical Society's new exhibit, OutRanks, opening June 14.

It's a fascinating well-researched exhibit curated by Steve Estes, author of Ask and Tell: Gay and Lesbian Veterans Speak out.

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Mealy-mouthed Mormon

There's nothing more fun than confronting a politician face to face, risking a permanent FBI file, while getting a nice batch of media exposure for making a politico cringe or spew mealy-mouthed rhetoric:

N.H. woman challenges Romney on gay marriage

CONCORD, N.H. --A New Hampshire woman, frustrated with Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney's opposition to gay marriage, made a point Wednesday of telling him about her personal experience.

"I am a gay woman and I have children. Your comment that you just made, it sort of invalidates my family," said Cynthia Fish, a mother of a 6- and 8-year-old. "... I wish you could explain to me more, why if we are sending our troops over to fight for liberty and justice for all throughout this country, why not for me? Why not for my family?"

Romney paused, asked Fish about her children and then praised her. "Wonderful," Romney said. "I'm delighted that you have a family and you're happy with your family. That's the American way. ... People can live their lives as they choose and children can be a great source of joy, as you know. And I welcome that."

But then Romney repeated his view of marriage. "Marriage is an institution which is designed to bring a man and woman together to raise a child and that the ideal setting for society at large is where there is a male and a female are associated with the development and nurturing a child," Romney said.

The former Massachusetts governor acknowledged other scenarios that raise children. "There are other ways to raise kids that's fine: single moms, grandparents raising kids, gay couples raising kids. That's the American way, to have people have their freedom of choice," he said.

Yet, he still refuses to consider allowing her to visit her partner in a hospital, share tax breaks, or enjoy the 1300 other priveliges straight married couples enjoy.

Thanks, Mitt. You're not better than the rest of the GOP flock of doofs.
you'd think Mitt would be a tad more supportive of alternative lifestyles, he being financially supported by a polygamous cult that makes millions from its hotel chain Marriott (owned by prominent Mormons) which rents porn to guests.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Sick Doc

Gabriel Rotello, my former editor back in the old OutWeek days, has scraped up quite a Petri Dish of dirt on Chimpoleon's Surgeon General nominee

President Bush nominated James Holsinger as the nation's new Surgeon General last week.

Dr. Holsinger's big focus is on childhood obesity -- a worthy cause -- and he is so widely regarded in the halls of power that The Economist called him "an entirely innocuous choice" and headlined its article about him "Enter Mr. Nice Guy."

I guess that depends on what you mean by nice.

Does nice mean you found one of those whacky "ex-gay" ministries where gays and lesbians undergo "conversion therapy," a travesty that has been denounced by practically every medical group in the country?

Does nice mean you write a paper called "Pathophysiology of Male Homosexuality," in which you claim that the facts of biology and anatomy prevent you from believing that gays and lesbians deserve equality?

Does nice mean that as a member of a Methodist church board, you vote to ban an openly gay man from joining the church?

Does nice mean you sit on a church board that accuses the "radical homosexual/lesbian lobby" and those who support rights and dignity for gay people of sparking "a crisis in the United Methodist Church."

Does nice mean you resign from the church's Committee to Study Homosexuality because you believe the committee will follow "liberal lines?"

Does nice mean you call homosexuality "an issue not of orientation but of lifestyle."

In short, does nice mean you use your position of power and authority to do everything you can do to undermine, demean and defame American citizens based on their sexual orientation?

Because this is what the nice Dr. Holsinger has been up to over the past few years.

I guess it's no big surprise that our lame duck, brain dead president would nominate an outspoken 'phobe to be the top doctor of a nation where gays and lesbians pay taxes like anybody else. And a nation still in the midst of an AIDS epidemic and a host of other health issues affecting lesbians and gay men.

It's slightly more surprising that The Economist's fact-checkers would overlook this rascal's history of gay-baiting and demeaning us -- or maybe that doesn't count as 'not nice' to The Economist.

Read his entire Huffington Post essay here.

Queerty also chimes in with its usual aplomb.

In good political news, Dallas may soon have a gay mayor.