Happy birthday Sheriff!

Posted on 30 Sep 2016 at 12:58pm

Sheriff Lupe Valdez checks out her new Tesla Model S. (Naomi Martin/Dallas Morning News photo)

Dallas County Sheriff Lupe Valdez got an early birthday present on Thursday, Sept. 29, when her partner, Lindsey Browning, surprised her with a brand new, shiny bright red 2016 Tesla Model S, outside the offices of Dallas Morning News. The sheriff, who turns 69 on Oct. 11, has wanted a Tesla for about five years, according to the DMN reports.

Browning, who owns Urban Hippie Chiropractic in Oak Cliff, said that she had bought the car the day before and had been worried that someone would leak the surprise, She told DMN she had let about a half-dozen Dallas County sheriff’s deputies in on the surprise so they could help coordinate the timing, adding “It’s hard to surprise her because so many people are in charge of her life.”

When Valdez commented that they would be paying for the car for the next four or five years, Browning answered, “The hippie business is pretty good.” Prices for the all-electric Tesla Model S reportedly start at $66,000. As they dove away in the car — with Browning behind the wheel since Valdez had not yet had lessons on driving it — the sheriff joked, “This was not paid for with county funds!”

The DMN said Valdez was at the newspaper’s offices for an interview with their editorial board.



Homophobic Alabama Supreme Court chief justice suspended for term

Posted on 30 Sep 2016 at 11:02am
Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore

Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore

Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore was suspended for the rest of his term, but will keep his job.

Moore got into legal trouble when he directed Alabama judges not to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples after the Obergefell marriage equality decision. He claimed that Alabama law trumped a U.S. Supreme Court ruling.

The Alabama Court of the Judiciary suspended Moore without pay for the rest of his term, which runs through 2018, but did not remove him from the court. During that period, he may not make any judicial rulings, according to Alabama’s WKRG, the CBS affiliate in Mobile.

Moore had been removed from office once before for defying a federal court that ordered the removal of a Ten Commandments statue from public grounds.

The Southern Poverty Law Center based in Montgomery, Ala. sent the following statement on the suspension of Moore:

MONTGOMERY, Ala. – The Alabama Court of the Judiciary today suspended Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore for the rest of his term in office.  The Court ruled that Moore violated the canons of judicial ethics by ordering Alabama’s probate judges to defy a federal court injunction requiring them to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples on a non-discriminatory basis. This is the second time in 13 years that Moore has been sanctioned as a result of ethics complaints filed by the Southern Poverty Law Center.

The following is a statement by SPLC President Richard Cohen:

“The Court of the Judiciary has done the citizens of Alabama a great service by suspending Roy Moore from the bench.  He disgraced his office and undermined the integrity of the judiciary by putting his personal religious beliefs above his sworn duty to uphold the U.S. Constitution.

“Moore was elected to be a judge, not a preacher. It’s something that he never seemed to understand. The people of Alabama who cherish the rule of law are not going to miss the Ayatollah of Alabama.”


Proving a point in a blue polo

Posted on 30 Sep 2016 at 7:50am

After spending a whole month wearing the same outfit to work every day without anyone noticing, I no longer question whether there really is a difference in the way women are treated and perceived.

chad-mantoothI recently came across an article online talking about gender inequality, and as someone who sees himself as a fair guy and a reasonable thinker, I didn’t quite understand how someone could be treated so differently based solely on their gender. I try to treat everyone I come in contact with the same — with dignity and respect. I hear about inequality all the time, but as a white male, I guess I don’t feel it because I’m privileged in many ways.

The article I read talked about the glass ceiling for women and the gender pay gap.  It talked about how women are judged more on how they look and what they wear than on their intellect.

The article also related the story of an Australian newscaster that tried an on-air experiment on sexism: He wore the same blue suit on air for more than a year — and nobody said a word to him!  No emails, no letters from viewers … nothing.

I couldn’t believe it! You and I both know that if a female celebrity wore the same thing twice, she’d be on TMZ the same day. I was watching an awards show red carpet event on TV recently, and it became so obvious to me: The women were questioned about their wardrobes and the men mostly were questioned about their films.

It was crazy to me!

It got me thinking, and I decided to try a little experiment myself. Would my wardrobe go unnoticed if I didn’t change my clothes from day-to-day? Or would I be called out the minute I walked into the office?

My job is in sales so there is something to be said for keeping up my appearance. But what if it was the same appearance? Every day?
So I tried it, a fun little experiment with my unknowing officemates.

One day in late August, I put on a blue striped polo shirt and black pants and blue striped socks, and I walked into work. Day 2: When I walked into the office, I expected to be called out immediately. Nothing. Silence. Day 3: Again nothing! I was shocked!

Day after day I got up and slipped on my “uniform,” as I began to call it, and went into work. And day after day, nobody said anything about my black-and-blue ensemble. Not one question, not one comment.

A week passed and still nothing. And I was floored nobody had caught on. How could this be? Surely I couldn’t continue for a second week unnoticed? How about a third? Or more?

My routine remained the same: I’d wake up, put on my uniform, go to work, come home, wash my uniform and get ready for the next day.

How long could this little experiment continue?

I have just 13 people in my office, so it’s not like they all don’t see me every day. Well, my “experiment” actually went on an entire month, me wearing the same thing to my office every day, and not one person commented on my wardrobe.

When I finally revealed to some of my coworkers what I had done, absolutely none of them had a clue that I had worn the same thing. Some of them still don’t know what I did. But I decided  I needed to end this experiment after only a month because I feel I lack the stamina and the temperament necessary to keep the look going.

So what did I take away from this little fun experiment? My eyes were definitely opened to the fact that there is absolutely some truth to the idea that women are judged more for what they wear. Hell, just look at this stupid election we’re going through! How many stories and/or comments have we heard about Hillary’s pantsuits or her hair?

I hope as I navigate through my crazy life that I judge people for the content of their character, not superficial things like their clothes. Lord knows that I wouldn’t want to be judged for my damn blue polo!

Chad Mantooth is advertising director for Dallas Voice and a sharp-dressed man.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition September 30, 2016.


LifeWalk discounts registration fee

Posted on 29 Sep 2016 at 2:42pm

lifewalkOnly 10 days left until LifeWalk, the 5K walk and festival that benefits Dallas AIDS organizations, and online registrations have been discounted. The registration fee is normally $40 but from now until the walk on Oct. 9, the registration fee is just $20. Not planning on going? You can still register and help make this year’s event as successful as last year when it was the largest Dallas fundraiser for Dallas organizations.

Registration in Lee Park, 3333 Turtle Creek Blvd. begins at 11 a.m. on Oct. 9. The walk is at 1 p.m. and festival at 2 p.m. WFAA’s Marcus Lee will be on hand. Register for LifeWalk here. You can register as an individual, join a team, form a team or make a donation.



Anna police: Investigation continues into disappearance of Anthony Gurley

Posted on 29 Sep 2016 at 11:00am

The Anna Police Department released these two photos of Anthony Gurley, a gay man missing since Sept. 18.

Police in Anna, Texas are continuing to investigate the disappearance of Anthony Gurley, but have no new information on his whereabouts, according to a statement released Wednesday, Sept. 28. Gurley was last seen Sunday afternoon, Sept. 18, when he left his job at the Kentucky Fried Chicken/Taco Bell restaurant on West White Street in Anna. His mother and sister reported him missing the following Wednesday.

Although some reports indicated that Gurley — known in the LGBT community as Celie — might have been headed to Dallas to attend the Alan Ross Texas Freedom Parade. But his mother, JoAnn Gurley, said that he had talked to a friend the Friday before his disappearance about going to the parade, there was no indication that he actually intended to go to the parade and that he had not, as far as she knew, arranged for a ride to Dallas that day.

According to the statement released Wednesday by Anna police, Anthony Gurley is described  as a black male, about 5’8″ and weighing about 165 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes. “It is unknown what he was wearing at the time he disappeared, but it is possible he was carrying” a black backpack with green stripes.

“Anthony has been diagnosed as bipolar and is on numerous medications, none of which are in his possession,” the police noted in their press release. “Anthony has been entered into the national missing persons database. Anyone with information on his whereabouts is asked to contact the Anna Police Department at 972-2848 or 972-547-5350.”


UNT Democrats want Rudy Guiliani uninvited

Posted on 29 Sep 2016 at 11:00am

Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani

College Democrats of the University of North Texas would like former New York Mayor Rudy Guiliani to be uninvited to their campus.

The outrage on campus isn’t because of Giuliani’s political affiliation, but because of his racist history as mayor. In their petition, the group sites Guiliani’s unconstitutional stop-and-frisk policy that allowed police to randomly stop anyone in the city to frisk. The policy was used almost universally  to stop black men.

Recently, Giuliani, a staunch Trump supporter, called Hillary Clinton, “too stupid to be president.” That was despite Clinton leading the effort to get federal money to bail New York City out financially after the Sept. 11 attack.

The Guiliani event is scheduled to be held at the Hilton Anatole on Oct. 27. If the event goes forward, demonstrations outside the hotel are being planned.

College Democrats of the University of North Texas meet Tuesdays at 7 p.m. in Wooten Hall 312 on the UNT campus in Denton.

Here’s a link to the petition that UNT students, faculty and staff can sign.


Nationally known rabbi to lead High Holiday services for Congregation Beth El Binah

Posted on 29 Sep 2016 at 9:43am
Rabbi Steve Gutow

Rabbi Steve Gutow

Following the sudden resignation of Rabbi Steve Fisch a week ago, Congregation Beth El Binah has contracted with Rabbi Steve Gutow, one of the most prominent rabbis in the U.S., to conduct High Holiday services.

The High Holidays are Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish new year, which begins on Sunday night, Oct. 2 and Yom Kippur, the day of atonement, which begins on Tuesday night, Oct. 11.

President Barack Obama called Rabbi Gutow “outstanding” last year as he appointed him to the President’s Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships.

For two years in a row, Rabbi Gutow was listed as #20 on Newsweek’s list of most distinguished rabbis in the U.S.

“It’s exciting to be part of a community that cares so deeply about the holidays,” Gutow said. “When invited, I was honored to say yes and I look forward to spending the holidays with such a terrific group of people.”

Gutow, a Dallas native, attended several Beth El Binah events in the 1980s and as a rabbinical student, led services for the congregation several times in the ’90s.

“I’ve participated with this congregation before, so I feel like it’s home to me,” Gutow said.

After participating in Ann Richards’ election as governor in 1990, Gutow went to Washington to organize the National Jewish Democratic Council. After a five-year stint with that organization, as well as leading the Texas Democratic Coordinated Campaign in 1996. Gutow attended and graduated from the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in Wyncote, Penn. In 2003 and he served a congregation in St. Louis for two years.

Gutow became executive director, then president and CEO of the Jewish Council for Public Affairs, where he served until 2015. During his tenure, he created Jewish Energy Covenant Campaign to increase the Jewish community’s participation in climate change and energy debates, combated hunger in America by launching the There Shall Be No Needy Among You initiative and expanded the Coalition on the Environment and Jewish Life.

He is an executive committee member of the Save Darfur Coalition and was arrested with George Clooney and others at a protest outside the Sudanese Embassy in Washington, D.C.

He has served on the state board of the Texas Civil Liberties Union and the national board of the American Jewish Congress.

Tickets for Beth El Binah’s High Holiday services are available by contacting the congregation through its website.


Skateboarding god Brian Anderson has come out as gay

Posted on 28 Sep 2016 at 3:17pm

Skateboarding legend Brian Anderson

Brian Anderson, a 40-year-old professional skateboarder based in Queens, N.Y., has recently come out publicly as gay. From the looks of this video, it makes not a bit if difference to his colleagues.

What the nearly 27 minute video below to hear Anderson discuss coming out and his colleagues in the world of skateboarding talk about Anderson, the “burly,” “manliest,” most “bad-ass” skater they know.


BREAKING: No injuries in Oak Lawn gas explosion

Posted on 28 Sep 2016 at 11:36am

explosionPolice said there were no serious injuries in a gas explosion on the corner of Knight and Congress streets. At least two apartments were damaged or destroyed.

More than a dozen emergency vehicles responded to the explosion at 2801 Knight St., but there were no serious injuries. One maintenance person was treated on the scene to remove glass from his arm.

Atmos Energy was on the scene to shut off the gas along with two plumbing trucks to seal any exposed gas lines.

Residents of the complex had been reporting the smell of gas in the laundry room to the property manager for at least five months. The owner of the complex had done nothing about it, according to the residents standing outside the complex.


BREAKING: Explosion reported in Oak Lawn

Posted on 28 Sep 2016 at 11:16am


Dallas Voice senior staff writer David Taffet just left our offices in the Design District to go check out reports that there has been an explosion at or near the intersection of Knight and Congress streets in Oak Lawn.

Stay tuned for details.