SMU sends 18 to Midwest LGBT conference

Iowa State University is hosting the 2012 Midwest Bisexual, Lesbian, Gay Transgender Ally College Conference Feb. 10-12. One student from Texas Women’s University, 17 from Southern Methodist University’s LGBT group Spectrum and an SMU professor are attending, according to the Daily Campus. Spectrum Co-President Harvey Luna put the group together after attending last year’s conference, according to the SMU newspaper.

Karen Click at SMU Women’s Center for Gender and Pride Initiatives called it a national conference for student leaders. She said this is the second year SMU has participated.

“They come back inspired to create change on campus,” she said.

Registration for the event is $80 per person and the group chartered a bus from Dallas.

“The SMU Student Senate paid for them to go,” Click said.

The MBLGTACC conference began in 1991 and takes place annually in the upper Midwest. The goal is to learn new strategies to face problems LGBT students face on campus daily.

Two weeks ago, Youth First Texas hosted a conference of North Texas gay-straight alliances.

—  David Taffet

Party for a good cause with “Snow Bunnies,” this weekend at Vue

“Bunnies on the Bayou,” the annual Easter weekend fundraiser that draws hundreds to the Wortham Center’s bayou adjacent patios, is still months away, but it’s younger brother “Snow Bunnies” is this Sunday, January 15, at Vue Nightclub (526 Waugh). Doors open at 5 pm.

“Snow Bunnies is not really like the big Bunny event, because it’s indoors,” says Bunnies board president Jack Berger, “although we’ve got some really kind of neat special activities that are going to happen.” Those neat special activities include an ice sculpture donated by Skye Vodka, tracks from DJ Joe Gauthreaux, “and maybe”, says Berger, “even some real snow.”

Bunnies on the Bayou started in 1979 as a joint birthday party. During the height of the AIDS crisis in the ’80′s it became one of the major fundraisers for Houston’s LGBT charities. Last year the various Bunnies events raised over half a million dollars distributed to ten area organizations.

Tickets for “Snow Bunnies” are $10, all proceeds benefit Bunnies 2012 beneficiaries, which have yet to be announced.

—  admin

Spin 4 a Cause benefits The Humane Society tonight at Axiom

Dogs and DJs

Hey, DJs love animals too. In tonight’s Spin 4 a Cause, the bi-monthly DJ event benefits The Humane Society. With DJs Joshua Welch and S.O.U.L.Jah on turntable duty and Jeff Roose hosting, music, food and good will all comes together. The best part? Pets are welcome to join the event in the patio. Just be careful with Fluffy around all that sushi.

DEETS: Axiom Sushi Lounge,4123 Cedar Springs Road. 6 p.m.

—  Rich Lopez

Spin 4 a Cause at Axiom Sushi tonight benefits Kidd’s Kids

Hey Mr. DJ

Don’t say music can’t bring people together. That’s the weekly goal of Spin 4 a Cause with DJ Jose G. Every Wednesday S4AC is intent on “bringing together community leaders, music and food to raise awareness and funds for local nonprofit chapters and organizations.” This week’s guest DJ is Derrick Brown and the night benefits Kidd’s Kids. So all that and happy hour drink specials? Umm, yes, please.

DEETS: Axiom Sushi Lounge,4123 Cedar Springs Road. 6 p.m. No cover.

—  Rich Lopez

Celebrate Cinco de Mayo on the Strip

Fiesta on the street

Sure Cindo de Mayo has turned into a drinking-based American celebration, but we’re gonna drop some history here on you.From the completely reliable source of Wikipedia, May 5 is the “date observed in the United States as a celebration of Mexican heritage and pride, and to commemorate the cause of freedom and democracy during the first years of the American Civil War.” What’s that? Still wondering where your margarita is? Well, hit up the Strip tonight as it gets a touch of Latin flair for the holiday. From Sue Ellen’s to TMC: The Mining Company, the celebration highlights the block tonight.

DEETS: Blockwide Fiesta at Sue Ellen’s, TMC: The Mining Company, S4 and JR.’s Bar & Grill. Cedar Springs Road and Throckmorton Street. 8 p.m. PartyAtTheBlock.com.

 

—  Rich Lopez

Great Spaces: Conditioner love

Yes, you can have a cold house without the big bills — and that’s not hot air

By David Taffet

Perhaps the one thing we loathe the most besides triple digit temps in summer is that dreaded electric bill. The air conditioner is a must for summer in Texas, but the wallet sure takes a beating. One local expert recommends these simple tips to help you keep your cool and some green.

Todd Ylen of TNS Mechanical in Arlington said that only half the air conditioning complaints his company receives could be traced to the main unit. The first thing he checks is the overall cleanliness of what he calls “the guts.” He recommends a professional cleaning with caustic chemicals.

“It should be done professionally,” he says, “The chemicals won’t hurt the plants but it can melt the rubber off your sneakers.”

During the season, he said, don’t be afraid to wash the unit with a hose, but not a pressure washer. A garden hose will not damage an outdoor air conditioning system. They’re made to withstand gale-force winds.

Keep grass and weeds off outdoor condensers. They clog the system and decrease efficiency.

Next, Ylen said he checks the house.

“How efficient is the ductwork?” he says. “How efficient is your house?”

The outer lining of much of the ductwork installed in the 1980s has deteriorated. Squirrels, raccoons and other animals that get into the attic can cause a tremendous amount of damage to the ducts as well.

Cold air will blow in the attic but never reach the living areas of the house if the ducts are torn or worn. He recommends modern, high-insulated ductwork.

Next, he suggests an energy audit company to check for leaks around doors and windows.

“Seal the house,” he says. It pays off in lower energy bills quickly.

And ventilate, he said. Ylen called the old whirlybirds on most roofs worthless.

He recommends solar-powered, fan-driven ventilators. A year ago, he said, they were $1,800. Today they sell for $400, an amount that will pay for itself in one season. He calls it an upfront investment that continues to pay off by lowering electric bills on air conditioning and never costing a cent to operate.

Filters should be changed monthly. Dirty filters prevent the system from drawing air easily, making it work harder and use more energy.
Programmable thermostats are also useful in keeping the system from cooling the house when not needed.

Ylen calls radiant barriers ineffective with a 50-year payback, but insulation very useful.

“A preventive maintenance program is crucial,” he says. He sums up his energy-saving tips to all homeowners — insulate, ventilate and stop air leaks.

TNS Mechanical services homes throughout Texas and has other tips at AirConditioningRepairArlington.com

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition May 15, 2011.

—  John Wright

Did Scott Lively’s homophobic ‘nuclear bomb’ cause a death in Uganda?

crossposted on Holy Bullies and Headless Monsters

Photobucket Last week, anti-gay activist Scott Lively whined in a local Boston newspaper that he is being unfairly criticized for his stances against the lgbt community, including playing a huge role in the creation of the infamous “kill the gays” bill in Uganda.

After an incident in Uganda yesterday, he may want to keep his mouth shut:

An outspoken Ugandan gay activist whose picture recently appeared in an anti-gay newspaper under the headline “Hang Them” was beaten to death in his home, Ugandan police said on Thursday.

David Kato, the activist, was one of the most visible defenders of gay rights in a country so homophobic that government leaders have proposed to execute gay people. Mr. Kato and other gay people in Uganda had recently warned that their lives were endangered, and four months ago a local paper called Rolling Stone published a list of gay people, and Mr. Kato’s face was on the front page.

At press time, the police do not view Kato's murder as a hate crime, but a robbery. However some lgbt activists in Uganda disagree:

Gay activists . . . said Mr. Kato was singled out for his outspoken defense of gay rights. “David’s death is a result of the hatred planted in Uganda by U.S. Evangelicals in 2009,” said Val Kalende, the chairperson of one of Uganda’s gay rights groups, in a statement. “The Ugandan government and the so-called U.S. evangelicals must take responsibility for David’s blood!”

Mrs. Kalende was referring to visits in March 2009 by a group of American evangelicals who held anti-gay rallies and church leaders who authored the anti-gay bill, which is still pending, attended those meetings and said that they had worked with the Americans on their bill.

One of the those activists was Scott Lively He even bragged that the 2009 visits created a “nuclear bomb against the gay agenda in Uganda.”

Kato's death comes almost a month after the arrest of Ugandan pastor Martin Ssempa on conspiracy charges. Ssempa, a chief pusher of the country's “Kill the Gays” bill and also for his penchant for showing “scat porn” in church is among eight people  who was either detained or sought after an “alleged conspiracy to injure the reputation of Pastor Robert Kayanja of Rubaga Miracle Centre Cathedral, Kampala.”

Ssempa and eight others had been charged with spreading rumors that Kayanja was gay, which is supposedly a common way to settle political scores in Uganda, but has deadlier implications since the controversy about the anti-gay bill.

The webpage Box Turtle Bulletin said the following:

David Kato was a spokesperson for Sexual Minorities Uganda (SMUG) and one of the plaintiffs (or applicants) in the successful lawsuit seeking a permanent injunction against the Ugandan tabloid Rolling Stone (no relation to the U.S. publication of the same name). Kato was one of three applicants who had been named by the tabloid under a headline tagged “Hang Them!” His photo appeared on the tabloid’s front cover.

LGBT Ugandans have lived under a menacing atmosphere for more than a decade. The anti-gay hysteria has increased significantly since the introduction of the draconian Anti-Homosexuality Bill into parliament in 2009. That bill, which remains under review Parliamentary committee, would impose the death penalty on LGBT Ugandans under certain circumstances and criminalize all advocacy by or on behalf of LGBT people. It would also criminalize even knowing someone who is gay if that person fails to report their LGBT loved one to police within 24 hours. Parliamentary elections are scheduled for February 18, and the bill is expected to be considered after Parliament returns for a lame-duck session before the new Parliament begins in May.

Now in all honesty, we do not know the truth behind Kato's murder at the present, so it may be unfair to blame Lively. Certainly he never told people to kill anyone. And according to him, he never agreed with the death penalty facet of the Ugandan anti-gay bill.

But he did fan the flames of hatred towards lgbts in Uganda and that's the funny thing about fanning flames.

They always get out of hand and sooner or later, someone gets burned.
Pam’s House Blend – Front Page

—  admin

AFA: Repeal of DADT will cause an epidemic of ‘butt-sex’

crossposted on Holy Bullies and Headless Monsters

Sometimes, it doesn't take much to demonstrate just how nasty and hateful some members of the religious right choose to be.

All you have to do is just give them free reign to talk.

Take for example the recent overturning of Don't Ask, Don't Tell. The American Family Association's phony news service, One News Now published the following piece:

Fighting back against sodomized military

A national defense analyst and Pentagon advisor says the new Congress can take a number of actions to blunt the impact of the new law that allows homosexuals to openly display their lifestyle in the U.S. military.

Many pro-military pundits said they were sickened and angered last week when President Barack Obama ended 235 years of wholesome tradition by signing the bill that will effectively sodomize the U.S. military. One of those specialists is Lt. Col. Bob Maginnis (USA-Ret.), who was part of the military working group that helped craft the 1993 homosexual service ban that the lame-duck Congress and President Obama have now overturned.

“You have a very corrupt regime running the country,” he laments. But he expects there to be a backlash when the 112th Congress replaces the lame-duck body that was repudiated by the American people last month.

Where does one start with this one?

Sodomized military? So according to the AFA, the overturning of Don't Ask, Don't Tell means that automatically the American Armed Forces is facing an “epidemic” of butt-sex?
 
Also, while the article claims that many “pro-military pundits” (which is a bizarre description. Just who are these “pro-military pundits” and does that mean there are “anti-military pundits”) who oppose the overturning of Don't Ask, Don't Tell, it only quotes one person, Maginnis. And while Maginnis may be a former military person, he isn't exactly a legitimate source of information.

He just happens to be with the Family Research Council (another religious right group) as the “Senior Fellow for National Security.”  Before being quoted by this article, he said in another article that “America is no better than Sodom and Gomorrah” for allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly in the military.

It's important to remember that the Southern Poverty Law Center has declared both the AFA and FRC as anti-gay hate groups due to their need to demonize and dehumanize the lgbt community. Granted both organizations claim they are being unfairly victimized for “upholding” Christian values.

And they may have a point . . . only if causing a panic about anal sex is a “Christian value.”

 

Pam’s House Blend – Front Page

—  admin

FRC really knows how to advance a cause. Ours.

The Family Research Council’s newest strategy at this late DADT hour: Building on the idea that openly heterosexual soldiers are on the cusp of fleeing or dying, thanks to the so-called homosexual agenda:

Winter isn’t officially upon us until next week, but it looks like Snowe and Flake have already melted. Two Republicans, Sen. Olympia Snowe (Maine) and Rep. Jeff Flake (Ariz.), both made stunning decisions to back a bill that could force soldiers to leave their jobs–or be hurt doing them. Despite warnings from General James Amos that overturning “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” would cost Marines lives and limbs, more Republicans are chickening out when the troops need them most. [SOURCE]

That’s a sweet thing to lay at people’s feet for the sake of political gain, ain’t it?

But believe it or not, that’s actually enot the most telling comment we saw in today’s FRC “Washington Update.” No, no — that honor would actually go to this quip:

Attempting to explain her turncoat maneuver, [Sen. Olympia Snowe] said she arrived at her decision after “careful analysis” (which, considering how her state just voted to protect marriage, probably wasn’t as careful as it should have been). [SOURCE]

We say telling, because it completely belies the “it’s only about marriage” strategies that these folks always use whenever nuptial parity is on a state ballot. Here we have FRC — major players in Maine, like all other marriage states — connecting a completely unrelated issue right smack back to the marriage matter, simply because both conversations have gay people at heart (despite how lacking that heart might be). FRC’s suggestion seems to be that Sen. Snowe’s primary source of information gathering on DADT should not have been the Pentagon report or the opinions of folks like Gates or Mullen, but rather the most recent way that a majority of citizens from her home state chose to treat gay people. The suggested answer seeming to be that discrimination is transferrable, with only the target needing to remain the same, not the issue up for debate.

If that’s what they wanna go with, fine. But we’re gonna throw it right back in their faces the next time we read a “this is not about discriminating against gays — it’s about protecting marriage” press release. That is, of course, unless our suddenly-gay-only military is unable to stave off world domination with only the pride flags and Quiche Lorraines that we plan to radically use as replacement weapons, ultimately stripping us of the right to call out Southern Poverty Law Center-designated “hate groups” on their homo-hostile nonsense.




Good As You

—  admin

High Schoolers Behind ‘Powder Blue Faggots’ Chant Won’t Be Suspended (‘Cause There’s Too Many Of Them)

When students at Ohio's North High School in Eastlake, Ohio, began taunting their football team's opponents with a "power blue faggots" cheer (a nod to the color of Willoughby South's uniforms), Principal Jennifer Chauby (pictured) insists she "was at the game and heard the students chanting in the stands. The assistant principal and I stopped it immediately." The clip of the chant is only 30 seconds, so maybe Chauby did step in to stop it! Except student Heather Ike, who originally uploaded the clip to YouTube, noted, "No teachers or parents from the sidelines intervened to stop the problem, and this chant occurred 3 times in the first 3 minutes of the game." Okay then. But now that the game is over (the Rangers lost), how is Principal Chauby handling the aftermath? By not suspending anyone.

CONTINUED »


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Queerty

—  John Wright