Pittsburgh's LGBTQ Blog ... out'n proud in the Burghosphere.

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View Article  Gene Collier on gays in sports

In today's Post-Gazette, the inimitable Gene Collier takes a shot at figuring at the implication of Penn State's homoconnection to basketball.  Actually, he contrasts the settlement of Jennifer Harris' lawsuit citing PSU coach Rene Portland's homobigotry with the coming out of former PSU bball player John Amaechi.

Let me summarize  - the fact that Amaechi is a gay basketball player should not be a bigger story than the fact the Rene Portland won't let lesbian basketball players on her team. 

"There's this huge assumption that all women athletes are lesbian, while the exact opposite is true of men -- that, if you're an athlete, you couldn't possibly be gay," Heather Barber was saying on the phone yesterday from the University of New Hampshire. "The assumptions are dramatically different, but the way they play out may not be."

Heather studies these things.  That's good to know because I cannot begin to fathom the impact of homophobia in the athletic realm. 

So Jennifer Harris settled and got her little lump settlement.  Rene got a slap on the hand. 

What have the rest of us gained from this sordid little situation? 

View Article  Mainstream Media vs the Burghosphere: Which White Men Should You Listen To?

By now, you've certainly caught this week's edition of the City Paper and noted the feature story on local blogs aka the Burghosphere -- yes, dear readers, we have yinzerized the blogosphere.  The Burghosphere is young, hip, sassy and an "alternative" to the mainstream media (MSM).  Or so says all the white guys writing the blogs.  And if they don't know alternative, then I ask who among us does?

Not that I have anything against white guys per se and I certainly 'fess up to reading their blogs on a regular basis -  Carbolic Smoke Ball; 2 Political Junkies; Pittsburgh Rocket; Angry Drunk Bureacrat; and, of course, MacYapper.  They make me laugh, cry, smirk, snicker, gnash my teeth, and frequently think about Pittsburgh in a new and interesting way.

But all this fuss about bloggers rocking the mainstream media is just a bunch of hooey.    The absence of a diverse range of voices in the Burghosphere should at least warrant a mention in a story.  The outgoing CP news editor (and all around groovy white guy) Marty Levine quotes two female bloggers - Maria of 2 Political Junkies and Pittgirl who chooses to remain anonymous.  They include a grammatically challenged excerpt from this blog and that's pretty much it for diverse voices. I'm not suggesting the City Paper ignored minority or alternative voices -- I'm pointing out that they don't appear to exist in Pittsburgh. Two chicks and an irreverent lesbian do not an alternative media make. 

Where are Pittsburgh's African-American blogs?  What about the disability community?  We have a significant number of immigrants.  Or what about our vibrant young art community -- especially those who are politically aware and active?  They are all over MySpace so its certainly not about a lack of intimacy with technology.  And the responsibility lies among those of us who are counted among minority voices -- we can't simply cede control of yet another medium to the powers that be and decry their lack of attention to us. 

My opinion?  The blogosphere and the Burgosphere are rife with the same issues that keep alternative voices suppressed in the mainstream -- access, leisure time, affordability, collegiality, literacy, etc.  To the detriment of us all. 

We can keep talking about which white guy done the other white guy wrong.  We can keep the bathrobe/coffee cup iconography sacred.  We can keep posting comments on each other's blogs.  But until we find a way to make this whole 'sphere accessible to our sisters and brothers who are disenfranchised, disempowered and dissatisfied with the status quo ... then let's not kid ourselves about being out of the mainstream. 

View Article  Gay-B-Gone!

h/t Pam's House Blend

View Article  Cool lesbo stuff to do

Not so much fun stuff on tap for this weekend.  Ledcat and I are taking my Dad out to celebrate his 66th birthday.  Then we cap off the weekend with more carpet-ripping-up and, just possibly, feng shuing the cat boxes.  Exciting, no? 

Sunday is the Family Diversity Festival at the Center for Creative Play, brought to you by the fine folks at Persad.  If you have kids, wants kids, like kids, are a kid ... check it aht!

Next week, however, there are a few enticing options, especially if you want to whoop up Valentine's Day dyke style. 

You can head over to the Ava Lounge in East Liberty for Operation Sappho monthly queer/lesbo dance party.  The theme this month?  We heart drag.  Three dj's are scheduled to help you groove.  We met one of the hostesses, Sarah Claire, a few weeks ago at an event she organized at the Shadow Lounge.  It all sounds very chic and fun. 

That same night Cupid's Revenge hits Remedy Lounge in Lawrenceville.  This event is for queer women and allies only.  This is part of a monthly Pink Party series. Every time I see that phrase, the pink panther theme starts running through my head.  I just had to say it.

Want some chuckles?  Check out upcoming gigs for the funniest queer-sensible person in Pittsburgh, Gab Bonesso.  She should headline PrideFest.  Really.   She's like a drag queen in Chuck Taylors only with more leg hair.  Really. 

Really.

View Article  Black AIDS Day, Rene Portland, Snickers and is Prince phallic?

Still not feeling up to par so very light blogging of late.  Here's a few tidbits that I may explore later:

Today (Weds) is the seventh annual National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day.  See Tony Norman's excellent column on this very important topic.

Former Penn State basketball player Jennifer Harris reached a settlement in her discrimination case against Penn State Coach Rene Portland.  Check out Pam's take on the whole thing.  Do we expect things to be different at Penn State or more of the same brazen "I win games so I can do whatever the hell I want" attitude from Coach Portland?  Hmmm ....

Mars company aired what some are calling homophobic commercials during the Superbowl featuring two men accidently kissing after sharing a Snickers bar.  Homo-disgust ensues.  Apparently, the Snickers website featured two other ads with rather violent self-loathing endings and some virulent "ick" factor responses from heterosexual men.  Parody or homophobic?  The Human Rights Campaign called foul.  Mars defended their attempts to reach out to the 18 to 24 year old demographic. 

Speaking of foul, others are criticizing Prince for his phallic imagery during the Superbowl halftime show.  We saw the show and both sniggered at the imagery which appears to be unintentional or at least ironic. But, heck, I still think Justin Timberlake got off easy for ripping off Janet Jackson's clothing simply because he was the innocent white guy duped by the black vixen. 

View Article  PG Reader: Tony Norman Right About Minority Homophobia

Ray McGogney of Shaler on homophobia in minority communities:

One can spout anti-gay epithets with impunity and cloak the bigotry in religious and moral overtones.

<snip>

Unfortunately, too few leaders are willing to risk offending their ethnic or religious base by taking a stand against homophobia.

Ray writes in response to Tony Norman's recent column on the furor around an African-American actor's usage of the term "faggot" to describe a fellow (gay) actor.  You may have heard something about it. 

A perfect example is Superbowl bound coach of the Indianapolis Colts, Tony Dungy, who is accepting honors from anti-gay Indiana Family Institute.  This is the local affiliate of big Daddy Jimmy Dobson and his merry band of Focus on the Family bigots.  This group makes no bones about their opposition to homosexuality, period.  We are diseased beings who need to be cured and kept away from the children. 

There's no discernible homophobic reason for Dungy to ally himself with this organization, according to OutSports.  Dugy isn't on the record as being openly anti-gay, but he is very clear about being a Biblically based Christian. 

"Whenever I'm asked to talk about it I make sure people understand my affiliation as a Christian, that I follow Christ and Christ's teachings according to the Bible," Dungy said in 2002.

Uh oh.  Those are ominous words for us homos. 

We can infer all we want, but my real point is that Dungy is using his good name to raise money for a group that wants to strip homosexuals of our civil rights in the name of religion. 

Here's the take from an Indiana LGBT blogger, Bilerico:

But Tony's prominent appearance before this group, as a representative of a major sports institution in Indianapolis, sends a chilling message. All of us shared the grief that Tony and his family experienced a year ago when his son took his own life. I understand that stories about a connection to sexual orientation were unfounded, and I would defend Tony's right to consider that a private matter. Still, there is an irony many of us in the LGBT community know well: The number of LGBT youth who have taken their lives because of self-hatred and homophobia is much above the national average. Organizations of the IFI variety cannot escape the fruits of their helping to foster the myths and resulting bigotry which contribute to those grim statistics. Surely Tony doesn't in any way support that; so why is he lending his celebrity and role model status to such a group?

Point well made.  It doesn't look good so I'll be cheering for Chicago. 

View Article  Pittsburgh's LGBTQ Family Diversity Festival
View Article  AFA of PA: Diversity Undermining Academic Focus in PA Schools

Diane Gramley sent me another press releases yesterday.  It seems she has uncovered the school system component of the homosexual agenda -- we are going to infiltrate the academic world by promoting diversity and thus, perhaps undermine academic efforts. 

[GLSEN's] No Name Calling Week lesson plans were one to two 30-45 minute sessions per day.  Should schools be more concerned about presenting this material or teaching the children academics and preparing them for the PSSA test since this test has become such an integral part of the life of a student?    

What she means is Pennsylvania's precious children might actually learn not to hate gay people.

Poor Diane.  Her merry band of bigots might lose yet another scapegoat for their xtian-fueled hatefest.  Don't worry, honey, it won't happen anytime soon. I'm sure there's plenty of time for your little Bubba to beat him up a queer boy at school without it being labeled a hate crime. 

View Article  Hysterical Christian Pop Parody: God Hates Fags - What Does Pgh Bishop Duncan Think?

h/t to Pam's House Blend

This is absolutely hysterical.  A video from the upcoming album of Donnie Davis and Evening Service from Love God's Way ministries.  Pam has all the details as intrepid bloggers ferret out the genius behind this parody.  Its been banned from MySpace, Google and YouTube.  I was rolling in my pajamas laughing so hard I frightened my dog who was trying to enjoy the soft-Christian-pop strains. 

I can't do all the fancy downloading and embedding of videos yet, so click on the image and it will take you to where you can view it all for yourselves.  Here's a taste of the lyrics:

God hates a fag
God hates fags
God hates fags
So if you're a fag, He hates you, too

Read the Bible and you'll be sure
To enter heaven, there's no back door
Righteous man, get on your knees
There lies no virtue in sodomy

Lord you are my shield
Sustain me through the fight
A shelter from the urges
And help me see the light

You filthy sinners should just let me be
'Cause Jesus my savior's the only man for me

 

View Article  News from Ohio: Plans to protect state workers from discrimination on basis of sexual orientation and gender identity

h/t to Pam's House Blend

According to the Dayton Daily News, Ohio Governor Ted Strickland may soon sign an executive order protecting state workers from discrimination based on sexual orientation.  The even better news is that the Secretary of State and Attorney General plan to expand that to include gender identity.

"Frankly, I don't think we should discriminate against anybody against anything related to their sexuality or gender identification in the broadest sense that you can apply it," said Attorney General Marc Dann. "I just want the best lawyers, best victim advocates ... the best investigators in the world. I don't care, frankly, as long as they do their jobs well."

As expected, the fundies and wingnuts are up in arms over the "liberal agenda."  Visit Pam for more details on that thread.

Its just nice to get some good news from our neighbors, isn't it?  Especially good news related to the gay agenda.  Now that's we've conqured the Ohioan Executive Branch, can the schools and churches be that far behind?  

Never fear, wingnuts, for Ohio is still the land of the "Creation Museum"  - upholding the authority of the Bible from the very first verse. 

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