Recycled Pic of the Day: First Wednesday on Cedar Springs to mark 3rd anniversary this week

If we’re not mistaken, and it seems we rarely are, Wednesday marks the third anniversary of, well, First Wednesday on the Cedar Springs strip. And this year it looks like they’ll have slightly milder temps for the annual Christmas Tree Lighting on the TMC patio. (Two years ago we recall Miss Oak Lawn requesting that the lighting ceremony be moved up so she didn’t get frostbite.) Also this year, the below flier is advertising a “sexy Santa Claus,” so we’ll be interested to what that’s all about, though we doubt it can get much sexier than the scene above from 2008, which along with the bad economy prompted Instant Tea to famously ask, “Why is Santa’s sack so light?”

—  John Wright

WATCH: Oral Roberts’ gay grandson Randy Potts records ‘It Gets Better’ video message

Randy Potts recording his “It Gets Better” video.

Earlier this year we profiled North Texas’ Randy Potts, whose grandfather was anti-gay evangelist Oral Roberts.

Randy Potts is gay, and so was his uncle, Ronnie, who committed suicide in 1982. Now, using a letter to his deceased uncle as a backdrop, Randy has recorded an “It Gets Better” video message to LGBT youth.

Potts lives in Farmers Branch. He moved to the area to be near his three children. He has little contact with the Roberts family although last year he did attend his grandfather’s funeral. In the video, he describes how, in front of 4,000 mourners, his mother told him he’d be going to hell.

NPR’s “The Story” interviewed him for an upcoming episode. He expects it to run later this year on the anniversary of his grandfather’s death.

—  David Taffet

New York Commemorates 9/11 Anniversary

9/11President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden joined in commemorations of those who lost their lives in the September 11 attacks nine
years ago.
Advocate.com: Daily News

—  John Wright

Man bearing resemblance to Jesus prevents burning of Quran in Amarillo city park

The other day we told you about the leader of a right-wing group in Amarillo, David Grisham, who planned to publicly burn a Quran on the anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks. Grisham tried to go through with his plan, dousing a Quran in kerosene and placing it on a barbecue grill in a city park. But protesters, many from the local Unitarian Universalist congregation, blocked Grisham from setting fire to the book. According to the below report, some placed their hands on the grill to deter Grisham from lighting it. Then Jacob Isom, shown above, snatched away the Quran while Grisham wasn’t looking.

—  John Wright

Leader of anti-gay group in Amarillo plans to publicly burn Quran on 9/11 anniversary

A Florida pastor may have called off his plan to burn Qurans on the anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. But David Grisham, the leader of a militant evangelical group in Amarillo, tells the local CBS affiliate that he plans to publicly burn the Muslim holy book on Saturday. Grisham is the leader of Repent Amarillo, which gained attention in January when it launched a boycott of Houston after the city elected on openly gay mayor, Annise Parker:

According to Grisham, he has questioned why he should go through with his plan, but in the end, he feels it is right.

“Terrorism was seeded by the ideas in the Quran. It’s the Quran that has put our troops in danger. Burning one isn’t going to put our troops in danger. It’s the ideas contained in that book that put them in danger,” said Grisham.

Grisham is a security guard at a nuclear-bomb facility called Pantex, according to media reports. Repent Amarillo goes by the moniker “Army of God” and refers to itself as the “special forces of spiritual warfare.” The group has also gained attention for a campaign to shut down a local swingers club, as well as a “warfare map” posted on its website identifying its enemies in Amarillo.

—  John Wright

Anniversary • 08.27.10

Philip Horton and Steven Olson
HORTON-OLSON | Philip Horton and Steven Olson will celebrate 20 years together on Aug. 31. Olson owns a landscape/gardening business and Horton is a buyer for an import company based out of the Dallas Market Center. They live together in East Dallas with their two cats and a dog.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition August 27, 2010.

—  Kevin Thomas

El Paso men who were kicked out of taco restaurant for kissing mark Stonewall anniversary by suing the city

Five men who were kicked out of Chico’s Taco’s in El Paso after two of them kissed last year have filed a lawsuit against the city, a security company and the restaurant, The El Paso Times reports. If you’ll remember, El Paso police threatened to charge the men under Texas’ sodomy statute, which was declared unconstitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court in 2003.

Plaintiff Carlos Diaz de Leon and lawyers with the Paso del Norte Civil Rights Project announced the lawsuit at a news conference in Central El Paso.

Diaz De Leon, 32, said the other four plaintiffs are identified only as “John Does” because they fear threats or retaliation.

“I’m doing this because I want to see change, a lot of change,” Diaz De Leon said. “I would like for people to be aware of their rights, and basically, I want equality for everyone.”

Briana Stone, a lawyer and director of the Paso del Norte Civil Rights Project, said the date the suit was filed coincides with the June 28, 1969, anniversary of the Stonewall Rebellion.

—  John Wright

Happy Anniversary!

Caroline Leto, right and Venera Magazzu celebrate their 70th anniversary this year. (Photo by Josh Ritchie, South Florida Sun Sentinal)
Caroline Leto, right and Venera Magazzu celebrate their 70th anniversary this year. (Photo by Josh Ritchie, South Florida Sun Sentinal)

Sometimes I get a little discouraged as I read about/hear about the setbacks our community faces and, worse yet, the many squabbles within our community about who is doing what and why and who should get credit for what.

Then I read a story like this one in the South Florida Sun Sentinal about a couple like Caroline Leto, 96, and Venera Magazzu, 97, who are celebrating their 70th anniversary this year. 70 years together! That is amazing for any couple, but especially so for a lesbian couple who have had to spend the vast majority of their life together hiding the true nature of their relationship from everyone except the closest of friends and relatives.

It gives me hope, and it definitely puts things in perspective!

So happy anniversary to Caroline and Venera, and I hope we can all learn a lesson from them.

—  admin