Thursday, February 26, 2009

News and Notables

Gay Man Wants to Become Nun, Planning To Undergo Sex Change

A 45-year old Italian gay man plans to undergo a sex change in order to become a nun. Not suprisingly, the Catholic church has not been supportive of his decision.

The man, a resident of small town near Rome, plans to quit his job and have the operation done in May in a Northern European country.

"I talked about my wish with a priest but I was misunderstood. A conversation with a bishop was even worse," the man told the Italian news agency. He as an ally in CasaPound, a social justice organization.

"All men and women should be equal and have equal opportunities," Massimo Carletti, a spokesman for the organization said. "He is determined to [achieve his dream] and we will help him."

Teens Accused of Pimping and Prostitution

Two Arizona teenagers have been accused of prositution, recruiting and pimping other teen girls, according to Arizona police. According to

"Tatiana Tye and a second 16-year-old girl, Jazmine Finley, were indicted earlier this week by a grand jury, Maricopa County, Arizona, prosecutors said in a statement. Although the girls are juveniles, prosecutors released their names and said they will be tried as adults.

Tye is charged with one count of child prostitution and three counts of pandering, or serving as a go-between or liaison for sexual purposes, prosecutors said. Finley faces nine counts of child prostitution; two counts of receiving earnings of a prostitute; and one count of pandering. All the charges are felonies, prosecutors said."

This is pretty shocking, to say the least. While I have my own thoughts about whether prostitution should be legal, such acts among minors is unacceptable, and I do believe there should definitely be some type of counseling for the girls. However, I'm not sure if I agree with the girls being tried as adults. I'm sure worse acts other than paying for sex have been committed by teenagers.

Republican Senator Compares Homosexuality to Murder, Quotes Scripture on Senate Floor

What part of separation of church and state don't these people understand? Colorado State Senator Scott Renfroe cited the Bible for his opposition to Senate Bill 88, which would give same-sex spouses of state employees equal access to benefits. Renfroe said homosexuality should not be considered legal and that voters already spoke in 2006.

According to Renfroe, the government's sole purpose is to make rules based on the Bible.

"[When] we create laws that go against what, biblically, we are supposed to stand for, I think we are agreeing [with], or allowing to go forward, a sin which should not be treated by government as something that is legal," he said. "And that is what we are going to do with this and we've done in the past is we are taking sins and making them to be legally OK. And that is wrong. That is an abomination according to scripture.

"And I'm not saying that this is the only sin that's out there. Obviously, we have murder...we have adultery, and we don't make laws making those legal, and we would never think to make murder legal. But what I'm saying that for is that all sin is equal. That sin there is as equal as any other sin that's in the Bible."

Among the verses quoted by Renfroe on the Senate floor were Leviticus 18:22 and Leviticus 20:13, which state that "man lying with man" is an abomination, punishable by death.

Really Senator Renfroe? So I guess everyone should stop eating shellfish and wearing mixed fabrics. After all, those are abominations according to Leviticus. I suppose all those bad-ass kids who curse their parents should be stoned to death well, and all us pesky negros should be shipped back to the plantation. And you could forget about having midnight fun with the wife if she's on her period, since that's an abomination as well.

The government deals with fairness, equality and the law, NOT sin. You're job as a senator is not to get on your own religious soapbox and spout scripture, but to represent ALL the citizens of your state. That includes gay folks. You should already know this, but from the speech you gave it sounds like you need a refresher course.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Self-Hating Queens on Tyra

This is sad and hilarious all at once. Sadly I've heard some gay guys make statements like "I'm not going to do this forever." Treating their gayness like it's a damn job or something. The only thing more annoying is Tyra's use of the term 'lifestyle' to describe gay. Ugh. However, I will give Ms. Banks some rainbow points for being somewhat critical of the guy's viewpoints. Granted, I'm not the most wordly and sophisticated gay in the world, but I do know that gay is not just one look or presentation.

As I've ranted and raved about before, being gay/bi is not a lifestyle choice. If you're a beer-drinking, sports-watching/playing, hip hop head, you're just as gay as a pink polo wearin' cosmo-sippin guy in Chelsea or Castro who worships Barbara Streisand. Hopefully the guys on Tyra's show will realize thier sexuality doesn't have to be a cliche.

NAACP Calls For Overturn of Prop 8

Very refreshing news. The NAACP called for passage of HR 5 and SR 7, two resolutions that would effectively overturn California's Proposition 8. National Board Chair Julian Bond, a civil rights verteran and staunch advocate for LGBT rights, says it is a matter of fairness.

"The NAACP has long opposed any proposal that would alter the federal or state constitutions for the purpose of excluding any groups or individuals from guarantees of equal protection," adding the amendment "threaten[ed] civil rights and all vulnerable minorities."

While the California branch of the organization was part of the original lawsuit that led to same sex marriage in California, but this is the first time the national organization has spoken about same-sex marriage. Way to turn 100, NAACP.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Some posts don't need a title. This is the face of abuse. It is not pretty. It is sad and unfortunate. This is the face people should remember everytime they go through contortions to defend Chris Brown or anyone who perpetuates abuse. Even with this graphic picture people are still bending over backwards to make excuses: "It was photoshopped, " "I need to see a video," "Why isn't anyone blaming Rihanna?" No one's blaming Rihanna because SHE'S THE VICTIM! CHRIS BROWN IS NOT THE ONE BANGED UP AND BRUISED! Unless she did a fuckin' psycho move and deliberately injured herself (which can be proven through forensics) someone(allegedly Chris) did this to her. And however she acted that night, short of attempted murder, is no excuse for this result. People make me sick sometimes.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Throwback Mix: Female Rappers

*Sigh* Where have all the female emcees gone? While there are a few still kickin' around-Trina, Lil' Mama, Jean Grae and Jackie-O come to mind-the visibility of female rappers is nowhere near where it was in the 80's and 90's. Hopefully in the '09 the major players will release new albums (Missy, Eve,) stay out of jail (Lil' Kim, Foxy Brown) or comeback with a vengeance (Latifah, Salt-N-Pepa)

Queen Latifah : Unity

Raz-B Shows The Goodies

I must say my favorite member of B2K was Raz-B. Those lips and that chest were a part of many a teenage fantasy. Well now it seems Raz has decided to show us what he's working with downstairs on his Adultspace page. This reeks of more than a little desperation, but his equipment is pretty impressive. Now if only Omarion would flash them cakes...anyways get into the pics at Son of Baldwin here.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

What's In A Degree?

Let me begin by saying that I am a firm believer in the value of education. Especially in today's world and in this time of economic crisis, having solid, marketable job skills, work experience and a degree (or at least certification and training along with a high school diploma) are valuable tools in landing a job.

However, as I've been going through the rigors of trying to graudate and get that little piece of paper--filling out a graduation application, searching the ends of the Earth for an internship, getting a degree audit, meeting with advisors so that there are no last-minute-I'm-sorry-you-can't-graduate-suprises, along with taking the regular 15-18 hour courseload--I sometimes have moments of doubt.

What am I doing all this for? often pops up in my head. What's the point? I mean if the current economic destruction we are all witnessing is any indication, having a degree or two and the words Doctor or PhD in front your name does not guarantee a job. People with master's and doctorates making six figures are getting laid off and collecting unemployment checks. My future field, journalism, is definitely feeling the economic burn. Newspapers are dying, laying off workers or going into hiring freezes.
At my hometown paper editors must take off a week at a time, while reporters must take one day off while still taking on a five-day workload. That's four days for the same pay. Our campus paper's editor in chief, who interned there last summer, said all this job insecurity has killed employee morale, and one journalism grad from our school is thinking about jumping ship.

Within my own family I've seen a college degree does not guarantee a happily ever after scenario. My brother and his friends, who graduated in 06' with a bachelor's in computer information systems, have yet to find jobs in their field. They all work at a Target Superstore in Lafayette. Make no mistake, my brother's not lazy and has definitely made efforts to find a CIS-related job, but so far to no avail.

For all my optimism and drive about finding a job, stories like this can't help but make me a little pessimistic about my future employment prospects. That all my hard work and experience gained in student media these last 4 years may mean nothing to a potential employer who can literally not afford to hire me is scary. Or that even if I'm fortunate enough to land a job, I still may not be safe from the chopping block if times get rough.

I guess the point of this post is that security does not come from a piece of paper. While a college education is a wonderful thing, having 10 degrees does not mean you will never be out of work. The current ecomonic crisis gives all of us more reason to focus not on the careers others think we should choose, but to search inside of ourselves and figure out what it is we want to do. Then make sure we are as prepared as we can be to pursue that goal, whether that involves technical school, learning a trade, or a university.

'Cause there's nothing worse then having spend time searching for employment in a field you hate, because you took what you thought was the safe way out, only to find no road is completely safe.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

News and Notables

Stimulus Package Heads to Obama's Desk

Well it's about time. On Friday the Senate appoved the $787 billion dollar stimulus plan proposed by President Obama. The plan, which the president plans to sign on President's Day, will include "about $120 billion for infrastructure -- new projects repairing bridges, roads, government buildings and the like -- more than $100 billion for education and $30 billion on energy-related projects that Obama says will create "green jobs," according to

"More than $212 billion goes to tax breaks for individuals and businesses, and another $267 billion is in direct spending like food stamps and unemployment benefits.

The Congressional Budget Office has predicted that the plan will create between 1 million and 3 million jobs."

Peanut Corp Files for Bankruptcy

Peanut Corp, the company at the center of national recall due to salmonella found in their peanut butter products, filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy liquidation in a Lynchburg, Virginia court on Friday.

The company's bankruptcy comes on the heels of an ongoing investigation by health departments, with the Texas health department ordering a recall of the Plainview, Texas plant's products after discovering dead rats, rat excrement and bird feathers (Bird feathers? Really? What the hell was going on in that plant?)

"It is unacceptable for corporations to put consumers' health at risk and then simply declare bankruptcy and go out of business when they get caught," said Jean Halloran, director of food policy initiatives at Consumers Union, publisher of Consumer Reports.

"PCA's declaration of bankruptcy will, among other things, shield it from liability suits filed by consumers who became sick or whose loved ones died as a result of eating PCA's peanut products," she said.

Indeed. A company, especially one manufacturing food, should not have dead rodents and rat feces floating around the warehouse.

Gays and Lesbians? What Gays and Lesbians?

I guess since they're in Africa, they figure they might as well live in DENIAL. During an appearance before the UN council defending Nigera's human rights record, Chief Ojo Madueke denied that gays and lesbians exist in Nigeria.While presenting an overview of issues raised by members of the Council on the Rights of Women, Death penalty and Nigerias Criminal Justice system, The Niger Delta, extra judicial killing and the state of prisons in Nigeria.

"His presentation caused a stir when he informed members of the council that the government of Nigeria had been unable to locate persons of gay and sexual orientation,despite concerted efforts by his ministry to include this category of persons in the consultations on the human rights situation in Nigeria.

"He further informed the audience that his ministry located only one woman of lesbian orientation and when invited to participate in a discussion on the rights of gayand lesbian persons, the lady informed his Ministry that she was pregnant."

Lawd I have heard it all! So out of the millions of people in Nigera, not one person is gay. And the one lesbian they found magically found a man to slide up inside her and knock her up, freeing her from the "bondage" of lesbianism. Too perfect. Maybe Chief Maduekwe meant there aren't any OPENLY gay folks in Nigeria. Of course with its reputation, why wouldn't someone want to come out in Nigeria? Rod 2.0 says it best:

"When lynch mobs attack and kill groups of suspected gay men, state prosecutors and the religious courts condemn gays and lesbians to death, and, the nation proposes comprehensive anti-gay measures that would ban gays from even going out to dinner together .. what incentive is there to come out of the closet? But if there really are no gays in Nigeria, one wonders why the government just voted for the second time to outlaw same-sex marriage."

Thursday, February 12, 2009

T.D. Jakes' Son Busted for Indecent Exposure

Jermaine Jackson, son of T.D. Jakes, pastor of Dallas-based megachurch The Potter's House, was arrested for whipping out his wiggy and masturbating in front of two undercover officers on Jan. 3. Oh what a tangled web the anti-gay weave:

"According to a Dallas Police Department arrest warrant affidavit obtained by CBS 11 News, Jakes exposed himself to two undercover vice detectives at Keist Park on January 3. The affidavit says Jakes walked up to one of the detectives at the park with his pants unzipped. Jakes then began to masturbate while making eye contact with the detective, according to the affidavit."

Although Jakes is definitely saner than most conservative black ministers when it comes to sexuality--he supports addressing the HIV/AIDS crisis in the black community and welcomed members of Soulforce, a pro-gay religious group--he opposes gay marriage and expansion of hate crimes. In the past he has also called homosexuality a "brokeness" and said he would not hire a sexually active gay person. With his arrest, Jermaine Jakes undoubtedly took those words to heart. You can read the whole police report here.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Hit or Miss?: Lil' Wayne

Lil Wayne's new rock track, "Prom Queen," has leaked onto the net. While I appreciate his willingness to delve into rock (which I think more black artists should do--after all we pretty much started it), I'm kinda iffy about this track. However I'm sure the legions of Lil' Wayne worshippers will hold it up as a revoluntionary work of art. The video my be hot though. What do you think?

Monday, February 9, 2009

Chris Brown and Rihanna....

I didn't plan on blogging about the Chris Brown and Rihanna abuse scandal, since everying blog and news source in the known free world has already done so. But after reading so many comments blaming Rihanna for whatever she may have suffered( since not all the details of the case are out yet) I feel compelled to say something.

THERE IS NO EXCUSE FOR ABUSE. Yes I know we all heard that sentence many times, but for some reason it doesn't seem to be sinking in. It doesn't matter if, as some commenters said "She pushed him to it" or "She lied on him" or "She gave him herpes." That gives Mr. Brown no right to lay a hand on her. The only plausible excuse for raising his hands against her would've been if she was literally trying to shoot, stab, kill or otherwise fatally harm him, and from what I've read Rihanna was doing none of the above.

At this point the full details of the case are not known, but the circumstances don't look good for Chris Brown. Not only did he allegedly threaten and/or assault a female, but he also ran away from the scene. But even so, everyone is innocent until proven guitly.

However, this case made me think about a dangerous trend in the black community. Too many times we as a community excuse or laugh off charges of abuse leveled at black male celebrities, and this situation is no different. While some have criticized Brown, others seem all too eager to dump on Rihanna, almost dimissing her as a trifling gold digger seeking bring Brown down. Black women are often seen as causing their own vicitimization, whether it be domestic abuse, molestation, rape or exploitation.

Hell even in cases like Karrine Stephans' exploits, men rarely bare the brunt of the blame for their actions. While Ms. Superhead's actions were indeed ho-ish, and she knew full well what she was doing, hardly ever did I hear anyone take the guys she slept with to task. Why did no one say to those men, "Yea she was easy, but what does it say about you that you used her, abused her and treated her like dirt?" "What does it say about your integrity as a man that you couldn't stay faithful to your wife? Or are you just a slave to your crotch?"

And I don't even have to rehash the depths of denial black folks reached into to defend R.Kelly during his molestation trial. Even the girl identified in the video wouldn't testify, probably for fear that crazed R. Kelly fans would attack her for "bringing a black man down." Now I'm rambling, but my point is that I feel black women's suffering is often not taken as seriously as black men's. In an effort of misguided racial solidarity, many black women, famous or not, suffer abuse in silence. In whatever case, I hope both Chris and Rihanna get the help and counseling they need.

Friday, February 6, 2009

A Love Poem: By Your's Truly

Turn the lights down low
Let the candles be the only things that glow
Caress your back/As you taste my skin
Our lovemaking is like a battle
Except we both win

We twist and turn in ecstasy
Passion erupting with each moan we sing
I can hardly keep my composure
My sense are no longer dormant
As I surrender to the eroticism of the moment

The bed springs creak in rhythmic time
As our bodies and spirits join
I am yours and you are mine
We dance to a groove only the two of us know
Sweat drops from our pores as we both explode
And seek warm refuge in our shared pleasure
Because loneliness is cold

You look into my eyes
And I'm not scared
My heart holds no secrets
My soul is not ashamed
Inhibitions have been dropped
Emotional demons have been tamed
My walls have crashed down
But the world isn't over
Revelation has come
In the arms of a lover

A Hot Mess...

All my single ladies! Now put your funeral home fans up! Lol fast foward to the 2:30 mark and see what I'm talking about.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Guess Who's Back.....

I just can't get enough of this man. Simeon's a personal trainer and fitness model from London. I need to be on the first flight out;).

Trial for New HIV Gene Therapy Begins

Recruiting for a new gene therapy with the potential to immunize people against HIV began on Tuesday. The first group to received the treatment will be HIV-positive patients with drug resistance problems.

"We do have good treatments for HIV. That has been one of the most successful stories of the last 20 years in medicine," said Pablo Tebas, an infectious disease expert at the University of Pennsylvania.

"However, over time, if the medications are not taken properly, individuals develop resistance to the HIV treatments, so they tend to have more limited therapeutic options."

The new treatment attempts to make people resistant to HIV by manipulating CCR5, a gene that makes most vulnerable to infection. A small group of people have mutated CCR5, making them resistant to the disease, which served as inspiration for the therapy.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

OMG It's Uncle Ruckus!

Well not really. It's actually Jesse Lee Peterson, but he might as well be. Everyone's favorite self-hating negro with the comments he recently made on Fox News. Via Pam's House Blend and News Hounds:

"As soon as Peterson had a chance to speak, he launched his racial attack against Obama: "I think we all agree that Barack Obama was elected by, mostly by black racists and white guilty people. Most black Americans, 96 percent of them, are racists who (unintelligible) white Americans. And white folks feel guilty and they are afraid of being called racists," Peterson said.

This was too much even for Hannity, who usually tacitly approves Peterson's bigoted rants. This time, Hannity said, "Do you really believe 96% of black America is racist? You don't believe that."
"Yes, sir," Peterson answered.

"No, you don't believe that," Hannity repeated.

OK, so maybe Hannity thinks Peterson believes only 90% of blacks are racist. Because that is exactly the kind of thing that Peterson has been saying for years on Hannity & Colmes, without a peep of objection from Hannity.

Shocking? Not hardly. This ain't Peterson's first time at the dumb remarks rodeo:

If whites were to just leave the United States and let blacks run the country, they would turn America into a ghetto within 10 years. The audience, shall we say, disagreed with me strongly. Now I have to disagree with me. I gave blacks too much credit. It took a mere three days for blacks to turn the Superdome and the convention center into ghettos, rampant with theft, rape and murder." -- his 9/21/2005 WND column, "Moral poverty cost blacks in New Orleans"

"If black folks want to blame someone for this tragedy they only need to look in the mirror." -- More Peterson "it's the poor darkies' fault" for Katrina tragedy, in The Washington Times.

"Most blacks, not all but most in Tennessee, especially in the Memphis, Tennessee area, are still living in the 50's and 60's. They are so racist that they don't even realize that white Americans have moved on. And so whenever there's a campaign like this, such as this, they always use racism in order to intimidate white America." -- Jesse's analysis of the congressional primary between Nikki Tinker, a black woman who used bigoted tactics, and incumbent, Steve Cohen. Cohen swept all demos with a landslide 80% of the vote.

And Rev. Peterson's versatile - check out his views about women and gays:

"Most women themselves don't understand why they provoke and agitate their spouse to lash out or run away. They don't understand the subtle control they have over weak men....In a relationship the man often has an unnatural need for his wife or girlfriend. He's addicted to her approval and to her sex. The woman senses this wrong need the man has and she begins to test him. Often times, men find themselves giving in more and more in order to a receive her favor. Sometimes the demands of the woman become unbearable to the point that the man may lash out -- I'm not saying this is right, but this is the reality. " -- Peterson on man-woman relations in his WND column, "Why fathers leave"

"The so-called 'Hate Crimes' bill is an attempt to take away the rights of Christians to speak out and express their freedom of speech. This is unjust and Americans deserve better than this from their elected officials." -- the wisdom of Peterson in WND article opposing hate crimes legislation.

Damn, where's Huey Freeman when you need him. Audio proof below:

Obama Pledges To Take "Air Out of Golden Parachutes"

President Obama announced Wednesday that all executives of companies receiving government aid will have their salaries capped at $500,000.

"Last year's 'shameful' handout of $18 billion in Wall Street bonuses "is exactly the kind of disregard for the costs and consequences of their actions that brought about this crisis: a culture of narrow self-interest and short-term gain at the expense of everything else," Obama said to White House reporters.

The president further blasted executives', calling their exorbitant spending decisions during a financial crisis not only "bad taste," but "a bad strategy." "I will not tolerate it," he said.

Under the new plan, companies paying their executives more than $500,000 will have to do so through stocks that cannot be sold until the company pays back its bailout fees to the government, according to  Bank shareholders will also have a greater say in executives' salary under the new plan.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

In Case You Missed It....

Ladies and gentlemen, Ed Hartwell. The video below needs no explanation;).

Monday, February 2, 2009

Who Sang It Better: The National Anthem

Yeah I know it's the National Anthem, but hey a song is a song. I absolutely loved Jennifer Hudson's rendition of "The Star Spangled Banner," at last night's Superbowl. It was powerful and emotional, particularly in light of the rough year she's had.

But of course, her version, like any other worth its salt, is compared to Whitney Houston's legendary 1991 Super Bowl performance (which was also emotional in its own way, given that the Persian Gulf War had just started). Anyway who do you think sung it better? And yes I know both versions were lip-synched:

Mormon Church Donated $190,000 for Prop 8

Oh how the mighty have fallen (or at least been exposed). On Friday the Mormon Church, facing an ongoing investigation by the state Fair Political Practices Commission, reported that it spent $190,000 in the campaign to pass Propostion 8, a figure previously unlisted and denied by the church. Via the San Francisco Chronicle:

"The report, filed with the secretary of state's office, listed a variety of California travel expenses for high-ranking members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and included $20,575 for use of facilities and equipment at the church's Salt Lake City headquarters and a $96,849 charge for "compensated staff time" for church employees who worked on matters pertaining to Prop. 8."

Up until Friday, the Mormon Church denied the claims made by Prop 8 opponents that they had spent big money on the 'Yes on 8' campaign, saying they had only spent $2,078. Guess they forgot about the other $187,922 they forked out to deny other folks their civil rights. But then again, it wasn't like the church was ready to reveal the full extent of their Prop 8 activities.

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