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Tennessee school outs gay students

Each weekday, xtra.ca tells you what stories have queer people talking.

May 2, 2008

A Tennessee principal comes under fire for publicizing the names of students who are dating, including gay students. In one case, a gay student was outed to his own mother.

Actor Alan Cumming blasts the media for making it difficult for actors to come out. He says the press hypes coming-out stories, thus making it seem that being gay should be considered controversial.

A queer group at MIT-Sloan receives threatening e-mails, but the school decides not to punish the offending student. Homophobia still exists, even in the most progressive US State.

May 1, 2008

The Globe and Mail helpfully reminds heterosexuals to stop having sex with 14 and 15 year olds, while finally getting around to noting that for gay teens, the ban on intercourse runs to age 18.

Reichen Lehmkuhl, still best known for being the guy Lance Bass was dating when he came out, breaks up with his latest boyfriend, posts angry list of Hollywood Dating Tips on his MySpace page, to help people avoid the social climbers. Surprisingly, “irony” isn’t listen as one of Lehmkuhl’s interests.

Greek women from the island of Lesbos try to reclaim the word “lesbian” from Greek homosexual women. Maybe “gayelle” will finally take off.

Apr 30, 2008

Psycho pastor and John McCain supporter John Hagee mellows his previous statements that gays caused Hurricane Katrina by making god angry. He still says god did it, but now he just doesn’t know why.

Montreal gay bar Le Stud settles a human rights complaint brought against it by a female customer who was asked to leave the bar while having drinks there with her father. Unfortunately, the resumption of father-daughter activities at the leather bar comes too late for women hoping to attend Sugar Bear Weekend with their fathers.

North Carolina is the gay news state of the day after Hillary receives a backhandedly homophobic endorsement from its governor. And in other North Carolina news, gay rights lobby group Human Rights Campaign refuses to endorse an openly gay man competing for the Democratic nomination for the senate.

Apr 29, 2008

Former Kentucky Derby winner War Emblem does not appear interested in lady horses since being put out to stud. Now, I’m not saying he’s gay or anything, but there is a very, very inappropriate horse-related video floating around the internet that may have scared him off sex altogether.

Is Barack Obama too good-looking to connect with ordinary Americans — you know, the morbidly ones ones whose mirrors crack when they look into them — and could this be an issue in the presidential election? This is a serious question that a professional journalist posed to him. The response, where Obama seems to momentarily lose his cool at the media for the first time is worth a watch.

A Vancouver man starts up a group for gay Sikhs.

Apr 28, 2008

“The American Family Association promotes open-mouthed gay kissing” may be the best worst-headline all month. AFA is complaining that Proctor and Gamble “promote open-mouthed gay kissing” because they run ads on As The World Turns, which is currently featuring a plotline that involves some open-mouthed gay kissing. And also, presumably, because they manufacture this.

A Virginia mother is shocked to find a children’s DVD she purchased at Target actually contained a Titan Media gay porn film, which presumably depicted even more than open-mouthed gay kissing. Also, I know that web site is supposed to be read “VA Gazette”, but I can’t help but read it “VAG-azette.”

Fortune Magazine predicts the extinction of the gay bar. But then where will we go to find other gays to open-mouthed gay kiss?

Apr 25, 2008

Hey, someone else noticed how the anti-stripper immigration bill keeps coming up when the Tories are hiding something.

A penis thief in the Congo is causing mass panic in the central African country. No word yet if the Penis Thief of the Congo is in cahoots with the Ass Bandit of Djibouti.

OUTtv lands a deal to supply content for the first gay and lesbian channel on Netherlands cable. It’s great news for OUTtv, even if bringing queer content to The Netherlands is exporting ice to Antarctica.

Apr 24, 2008

The British House of Lords, which it turns out is not a gay dungeon but their version of the senate, votes against government plans to ban gay jokes from British airwaves. George Michael and Boy George are said to still be celebrating this victory for their careers.

Immigration minister Diane Finley is under increased security claiming that she has come under threat from organized crime due to her proposed changes to immigration law banning foreign strippers from working in Canada. Funny how the stripper issue keeps cropping up when Conservatives are faced with something they’d rather not talk about.

The Swedish Film Institute announces plans to fund a series of mobile-phone-shot porn shorts. I suppose now both sides of the C-10 debate can say, “Hey, it could be worse…”

Apr 23, 2008

Canadian and South American Anglican bishops square off over gays in the church. At issue: whether gays and lesbians are more oppressed by being included or excluded from Church activities.

The latest Republican gay sex scandal ends in acquittal of rape charges when it’s revealed that the GOP county commissioner involved was videotaping his encounters with hundreds of gay escorts, which proved the sex was consensual, if still kinda creepy.

23/6 news recreates CNN reporter Richard Quest’s thought process the night he was arrested in Central Park with a rope tied around his penis, a dildo in his boot, and a baggie of meth in his pocket.

Apr 22, 2008

Ontario plans to stream the legislature over the internet. Here’s hoping to many embarrassing slip-ups being caught on microphone!.

Speaking of streaming video, from the Philippines, documentary evidence (NSFW) of why anything you put up your butt should have a flanged base.

Speaking of cases where video evidence would be useful and greatly appreciated, Enrique Iglesias denies that he has a small dick.

Apr 21, 2008

Federal Liberals pounce on Tory loudmouth Rob Anders’ comments comparing the Beijing Olympics to the 1936 Berlin Olympics. Um, wait, are we supposed to take Beijing’s side here?

And Tori Spelling says she… oh god, I can’t even pretend to care.

Mainstream press picks up on the story that Vancouver’s queer bookstore Little Sister’s is up for sale. This news comes on the heels of Toronto queer bookstore This Ain’t The Rosedale Library leaving the Toronto Village.

Apr 18, 2008

Supreme Court strikes down the “two-beer theory” of defence for drunk driving. The six-beer theory still stands.

Straight Calgary bar owner Paul Vickers plans to open an “upscale” gay bar on the site formerly occupied by one of his notorious redneck bars, Cowboys. Quoth Vickers: “it’s going to be an upscale place that’s heavily into dance — you know they love to dance.” He shouldn’t need too much luck. It sounds like he’s got “them” all figured out.

Today’s penis news, a Connecticut judge denies a lawyer’s request that the accused in a sexual assault case submit to having his penis photographed in a state of arousal to prove that it curves to the left. Apparently attempting to mitigate the discomfort, the lawyer actually suggested the arousal could be chemically stimulated or done manually with pornography.

Apr 17, 2008

A National Post columnist calls gay marriage Canada’s biggest mistake, rounding off a series that has already criticized multiculturalism, public post-secondary education, we can rest assured that Canada’s Fox News is still well outside of the mainstream.

Australian doctors recommend masturbation to men to decrease risk of prostate cancer. In honour of Australians who make us masturbate, here’s some pictures of Hugh Jackman on the beach.

Gay Scots fight for their right to donate blood, not unlike the blood fights right here.

Apr 16, 2008

RCMP raid Conservative Party headquarters to investigate an alleged breach of election financing rules stemming from the 2006 election. While Tory misfortunes are often worth celebrating, it’s worth noting that the RCMP has lately been embroiled in some scandals of its own.

Will Pierre Fitch find a new home on the internet? A PQ MNA would like him to.

And no gay news day is complete without a giant penis. And this time, I’m not talking about Peter MacKay.

Apr 15, 2008

A recent poll suggests parents would find two men kissing in a video game more offensive than a graphically severed human head. The poll was a sample of readers of the website WhatTheyPlay.com, a family-values-based video game review site, that gave a warning to Guitar Hero III, as “the songs in the game deal with traditionally edgy themes of rock music, ranging from the sexually suggestive (The Scorpions’ “Rock You Like a Hurricane”) to the occult (Iron Maiden’s “The Number of the Beast”),” so take it with a grain of salt.

The Governator says calls for a constitutional gay marriage ban are a waste of time, perhaps because he’s been doing a good job of his own.

The wrongest baby-shower gift ever.

Apr 14, 2008

Another gay man is denied refugee status in Canada.

Stephen Harper notes that the brutal travel schedule of BC MPs in Parliament takes a mental and emotional toll. Does this explain Stockwell Day?

A porn star and candidate for Rome city council wants to create a red-light district next to the Vatican.

Apr 11, 2008

The Vatican chides the Washington, DC, Metro service for running an ad depicting a Pope Benedict bobblehead riding city transit, apparently over concerns that the bobblehead has miss-dressed. Yes, now the Vatican has a fashion police. You can purchase the “controversial” bobblehead here, but I recommend this even creepier pope doll. (I still think someone who rides around in a bulletproof popemobile should have an action figure, but apparently, one hasn’t been made of Benedict yet.)

An Illinois lawmaker tries to remove an atheist testifying before her house of representatives committee because his beliefs make him “dangerous for children.” Audio here (MP3).

Daniel Craig muses about the possibility of James Bond having a same-sex sexual encounter in future films. I guess once you’ve put him in square-cut trunks, he’ll do anything.

Apr 10, 2008

The Globe reports that Chinese bloggers have been denouncing Harper as an arrogant “clown” over his decision not to attend the opening ceremonies of the Beijing Olympics. Um, go China?

Here in Canada, Harper gets to appoint another Supreme Court Judge. Fuck. On the plus side, the one who’s retiring did happen to be the biggest threat to criminal defence law, so at least on that front it can’t get worse.

And a letter-writer to the National Post argues that figure skating can turn you gay. It’s hilarious until you realize that he has the vote.

Apr 9, 2008

The Formula One racing world is rocked as a video surfaces showing International Automobile Federation president Max Mosley participating in a Nazi-themed S/M orgy with five German prostitutes (NSFW, duh). The scandal is particularly outrageous to Mercedes-Benz and BMW, who have always believed that there is no justification for Nazi-themed prisoner abuse scenarios that don’t lead to the production of luxury cars.

A federal judge in Baltimore has placed a lien on the Westboro Baptist Church and other properties owned by the Phelps family, in order to get them to pay the $5 million the church owes to the father of a slain US soldier whose funeral Phelps protested with homophobic propaganda. In response, the church has added “God Hates Baltimore” to the list of things god hates (“America” and “Fags” being the other two biggies) and begun protesting random Baltimore-area funerals.

And sure to make Phelps’ blood boil comes this news from Denmark: A Copenhagen organization called Rainbow has opened up a “gay graveyard.” The graveyard ghetto is starting small, with spots for 36 funeral urns, but hopes to develop into a vibrant gay afterlife village, before being eventually gentrified out of existence.

Apr 8, 2008

Harper allows Tom “homosexual faggots with dirt under their fingernails who spread diseases” Lukiwski to keep his job, disregarding the advice of pollsters who warn that failure to distance the Tories from apparent homophobia will hurt them in the next election. So, every cloud has a silver lining, of sorts.

On a related note, Jonathan Kay at the National Post suggests that the political right move on, because he says the gay rights agenda is over, and positing anti-gay biological or social conspiracy theories damages the right’s credibility. Once again: Cloud, meet your Silver Lining.

Jamaica’s tourism minister scoffs at suggestions that gay activists in Europe and North America may lead a successful boycott against the island’s tourism industry over the country’s failure to protect its queer citizens. But perhaps that was before Canadian activists convinced iTunes to drop pro-queer-bashing Jamaican dancehall artists from its download service. While boycotting Caribbean travel on a internet journalist’s salary is somewhat of a hollow gesture, let it be known that I am officially giving up Malibu until Jamaica’s queers are free.

Apr 7, 2008

CBS daytime chief denies that homophobia is behind her network’s decision not to show explicit gay lovemaking in the gay love story currently running through As The World Turns, claiming that not showing all the hot, under-the-sheets, shirt-on action you would see in the show’s straight love stories is “just good storytelling” and that it’s a method to “get people to watch more.” In deference to that plan, the punchline to this joke will appear at the end of the week. Dun-dun-DUN!

British gay rights activist Peter Tatchell was detained in London while protesting the running of the Olympic Torch through London, presumably because there’s only one human rights narrative allowed during the Beijing Olympics, and gay rights isn’t it.

And the 1991 video wherein the current premier of Saskatchewan, a current Tory MP, and a bunch of Tory staffers trade offensive witticisms just won’t go away. Premier Wall is now threatening to sue the Canadian Press over its headlines, which note that the NDP allege he and his friends made racist, homophobic, and sexist remarks in the tape. Less surprising, however, is that CTV is reporting that the whole issue could hurt Harper in the polls if he doesn’t distance the party from the whole affair. Idea: Fire Lukiwski and get someone whose homophobia isn’t yet a matter of public record to run in his seat. That worked wonders last time!

Apr 4, 2008

A Tory MP who was fairly insignificant before yesterday is forced to apologize for being caught on tape 17 years ago making jokes about “homosexual faggots with dirt in their fingernails that transmit diseases.”

In response to Mr. Radwanski, 17 years ago was not the stone age of gay rights. At the time, five provinces had already prohibited anti-gay discrimination and there was an openly gay MP. And even if it were the stone age, it speaks volumes about the man’s beliefs that at age 40, in a government office, on videotape, he felt comfortable joking about gays and people with AIDS.

Irony abounds here. This Lukiwski guy’s federal political career began when the Harper Tories turfed the guy who previously held his seat, Larry Spencer, publicly stated that he thought homosexuality should be outlawed. So, of course, they decided to replace Spencer with another homophobe. Sure, Lukiwski’s now saying he has no beef against gays, but let’s quickly check out his voting record, shall we? Hmm… Voted against gay marriage in 2005… Voted for banning gay marriage in 2006… Clearly this is not the work of someone who’s seen the light.

Apr 3, 2008

Watch out who you’re hugging, the Globe reports, lest you freak out our Prime Minister.

Late night talk show hosts duel over homophobic jokes! Leno apologizes for mocking Ryan Phillipe’s early gay soap opera role. Letterman has yet to apologize for calling a a pregnant trans man an “androgynous freak show.”

A top Italian military commander says gays are unfit for the army, presumably because it takes a heterosexual man to capitulate.

Apr 2, 2008

Brown University’s newspaper reports that the University Bookstore is undergoing a redesign to make it “less gay.” I’m not offended, but the joke’s just not all that funny. Speaking of not funny, the CBC finally cancels The Royal Canadian Air Farce.

Ecuador’s president speaks out against homophobia and discrimination against gays — except in regard to marriage, which is for heterosexuals only. Leave it to the president of a country named for straddling an imaginary line to sit on the fence.

Progress in the US South: two Alabama girls get to go to prom together at their public high school. Now if only they could do it without a federal court order…

Apr 1, 2008

Hundreds march against the Westboro Baptist Church, surely more than that asshole Fred Phelps deserves.

A Vancouver man challenges the US’s discriminatory HIV-positive visitor ban, at the same time as US lawmakers are reconsidering the two-decade ban.

Orlando city workers order Wrestlemania to airbrush male nipples out of its billboards. I guess pasties were out of the question?

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