WATCH: ‘Anderson Cooper 360′ puts the focus on bullying all week long

Anderson Cooper

Every night this week, Anderson Cooper 360 will focus on the root causes of bullying and what can be done to end it as part of a “special multi-platform effort”and in partnership with Facebook, CNN, The Cartoon Network and Time Inc. The week winds up Friday, Oct. 14, with a rebroadcast of “Bullying: It Stops Here,” a special town hall meeting, that first aired Sunday night, Oct. 9.

AC 360 commissioned a special study conducted last spring in which more than 700 students at The Wheatley School, a nationally top-ranked high school on Long Island, were given a 28-question survery on “aggressive behavior,” aka bullying, four separate times throughout the semester. And according to the sociologist who partnered with AC 360 to conduct the survey, the stereotype of “the schoolyard bully preying on the weak doesn’t reflect reality in schools.”

Instead, sociologist Robert Faris said, students are involved in a kind of “social combat” as they try to fight their way to the top of the school’s social hierarchy. The video below gives you a preview of the program  talking about the survey’s findings.

AC 360 explores the findings of this study in depth each night at 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. CST on CNN.

—  admin

WATCH: Violent brawl between two transgender women caught on video in San Antonio

A violent brawl between two transgender women was caught on tape in the parking lot of a San Antonio convenience store early this morning. KENS Channel 5 reports:

San Antonio police had to use a taser on a transgender individual who had been involved in the heated fight in the 800 block of San Pedro early Monday morning.

Investigators said the suspect hurled a shoe at them after their conversation reached a boiling point. They said that individual now faces criminal charges.

The other person in the fight did not cooperate with investigators and left the scene.

The original argument between the two transgender individuals escalated into a fight at about 4 a.m. Monday. The source of the disagreement remains unclear. Witnesses gave several different explanations of what may have prompted the parking lot fight.

The two clashed just feet from a KENS 5 news truck, and most of the incident was caught on camera. Police initially said they would consider issuing citations for the fight.

Watch the video below.

—  John Wright

Starvoice • 08.26.11

By Jack Fertig


Phil McGraw turns 61 on Thursday. The former Wichita Falls resident has used his talk show Dr. Phil to address LGBT issues regarding youth and same-sex marriage. He recently spoke to CNN about the damages of ex-gay practices in the wake of Michelle Bachmann’s presidential campaign.



Mercury in Leo stimulates creative thinking, but also a lot of self-promotional BS. While in Leo he’s agitating the Pluto-Uranus square, leading people to take their notions way too seriously, but those aspects can trigger bits of revolutionary genius. The trick there is to not challenge everyone around you, but to challenge yourself.


VIRGO  Aug 23-Sep 22
As naughty fantasies come inside your head, explore them safely there. Putting them into reality could be delicious, but be careful! However you explore them, you learn a lot about yourself.

LIBRA  Sep 23-Oct 22
Everyone wants an argument. Can’t they just be nice and agree with you? There’s nothing wrong with sticking to your guns. Shooting them off freely drives away people you care about.

SCORPIO  Oct 23-Nov 21
You may feel hassled by an overbearing boss. Bite your tongue and take it all in as feedback to help you do your job better, no matter what the tone. There’s always room for improvement.

SAGITTARIUS  Nov 22-Dec 20
Your idea of playful banter can really upset some people. That could be a good thing when done in the right time and place. In any event, there will be a price to pay, so make sure it’s worth it.

CAPRICORN  Dec 21-Jan 19
Capricornian brilliance at sex is one of the zodiac’s best-kept secrets. The more it stays that way, the better off you are. Keep that info on a need-to-know basis.

AQUARIUS  Jan 20-Feb 18
If you can’t avoid debate, keep one eye inward to see how your arguments reflect your deepest fears and insecurities. Keep a friend nearby with whom you can have an honest talk about that.

PISCES  Feb 19-Mar 19
Taking a cut in pay might be a necessary strategy for long-range benefits. Don’t get taken advantage of. If money gets tight, you have the creative resourcefulness to make it through.

ARIES  Mar 20-Apr 19
Your idea of fun and good humor upsets some people. In the right time and place that could be a good thing, but think ahead about consequences and whom you can afford to piss off.

TAURUS  Apr 20-May 20
Arguments at home reflect and exacerbate your insecurities and doubts. Reflect on childhood patterns and how they affect you now. Probably best to do that on your own.

GEMINI  May 21-Jun 20
Your mouth is getting even further ahead of your brain than usual, and your libido is somewhere inbetween. The brilliance of your ideas depends on how much you challenge yourself.

CANCER  Jun 21-Jul 22
Hiding financial problems from your partner will make the situation worse. It may be time to renegotiate how you deal with bills and expenses. Explore ideas now, but don’t make decisions.

LEO  Jul 23-Aug 22
Others admire your brilliance nearly half as much as you do, but a good showman always leaves the audience wanting more. The ability to listen makes you more popular than the ability to talk.

Jack Fertig can be reached at 415-864-8302 or

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition August 26, 2011.

—  Michael Stephens

WATCH: Randy Roberts Potts on Joy Behar

Randy Roberts Potts

Oral Roberts’ grandson Randy Roberts Potts, who lives in Dallas and spoke to Dallas Voice last summer, appeared on Joy Behar last night. He spoke to CNN anchor Don Lemon, who is also gay. The video is below.

Since speaking to Dallas Voice last year, Potts has been writing and has become a speaker appearing around the country, talking about coming out in an evangelical family. Last fall, he made an “It Gets Better” video that was included in the bestselling book of the same title.

In this interview, he said that when he visited his grandfather about six months before he died, he the evangelist apparently knew his grandson was gay and that meeting was his way of telling him that he loved him, “no matter what.”

When Lemon, 45, came out publicly earlier this year, he said that he’d been out to CNN colleagues for a long time.

—  David Taffet

Nyad forced to call off record swim attempt

Record-holding swimmer Diana Nyad, 61, was forced to call off her attempt to become the first person to swim nonstop from Havana, Cuba, to the Florida Keys without a shark cage early this morning, according to this report from (Read my more extensive post from Monday about the effort here.)

Rough seas, shoulder pain and asthma ended her swim early, after she’d made it about halfway through the 103-mile distance in 29 hours. This is the second time Nyad has attempted the swim. The first time was in 1978 when she was 29. She swam 76 miles in about 42 hours — that time inside a shark cage — but had to call it off when high winds and rough seas pushed her off course and kept banging her into the sides the tank.

I am sad that Nyad had to call off the swim. I was really rooting for her to make it. But at the same time, I am amazed and inspired that she even tried to make the swim, and when you think about how far she got and how quickly, it is even more amazing. So Diana Nyad is still one of my new heroes.

Watch CNN’s report below.

—  admin

The summer (not-so-)blockbuster Palin doc

Sara Palin

There’s a new documentary out about Sarah Palin. Who knew?

Well, apparently, some folks knew about the film — called The Undefeated — because the film’s distributor, ARC Entertainment, told CNN that the documentary averaged $5,000 per screen on Friday and Saturday nights of its opening weekend (July 15-16), and that screenings at several locations were sold out. ARC also suggested that the film will go into wider release sometime later this month.

(It opened in 10 cities last weekend. Perhaps if that hadn’t also been opening weekend for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2, more people would have gone to see the Palin doc. Maybe, but I doubt it. I don’t think the audiences for the two films have much overlap.)

The Hollywood Reporter says the film earned $60,000 to $75,000 in its opening weekend. Just in comparison Harry Potter raked in $168.5 million in its opening weekend.

—  admin

David Kunkle talks up Dallas’ gay community in CNN piece about TNT’s new version of ‘Dallas’

David Kunkle

Following TNT’s announcement last week that it has picked up the new version of Dallas, CNN posted a long story about how the original Dallas has shaped the city’s image — and how modern Dallas is nothing like the stereotypes created by the show. (The entire article is worth a read when you have time, although perhaps it was only interesting to me because I’m not from Dallas and I’ve never seen an episode of the original series). Anyhow, the CNN story mentions early on that Dallas has a lesbian sheriff, and then former police chief turned mayoral candidate David Kunkle puts an exclamation on the gay angle near the end. “We have one of the largest gay populations and one of the strongest gay communities of any city in the country,” Kunkle tells CNN. Thanks, chief. Who knows, maybe the new “Dallas” will add a gay storyline.


—  John Wright

‘Traditional values’ take a hit in the polls

HIGH AND LOW | Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, right, had the highest favorability ratings of possible Republican presidential candidates in a recent CNN poll. Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, left, had the highest ‘unfavorability’ rating.

Percentage of people saying government should ‘promote traditional values’ drops below 50 percent for the 1st time

LISA KEEN | Keen News Service

“Traditional values” didn’t do too well in the latest CNN poll of American adults.

For the first time in the 18 years since the question was first asked, the percentage of adults thinking that the government should “promote traditional values” has dropped below 50 percent.

Of the 1,015 adults surveyed between June 3 and 7, 46 percent said the government should promote traditional values, but 50 percent said government should “not favor any set of values.” Four percent had no opinion.

The survey results, which were released Sunday, June 12, had a margin of error of plus or minus three points.

Just last year, 53 percent of respondents said government should promote “traditional values” and, according to CNN, past polls have shown support as high as 59 percent (in October 2001 and January 1996).

But since the question was first asked, in 1993, responses have fluctuated dramatically.

In 2001, for instance, the question was asked in September and again in October. In September 2001, 53 percent said government should promote “traditional values”; in October, 59 percent said so.

The previous low point for traditional values came in September 2005, when only 50 percent of adults said government should promote them.

CNN did not explain what it meant by “traditional values,” but in political discourse, the phrase has emerged as code for “anti-gay.”

The right-wing Traditional Values Coalition defines traditional values as including the view that homosexuality is an abomination, but also includes views that are anti-abortion, pro-death penalty and pro-religion.

Some polls have asked questions concerning “traditional marriages,” usually seeking respondents’ views on allowing same-sex couples to marry.

Two years ago, Fox News asked, “Do you think straight people in your community who have traditional religious values are tolerant of gays and lesbians and their beliefs?”

Sixty-seven percent said they think straight people in their communities are “very tolerant” or “somewhat tolerant.”

CNN’s question was asked this year along with questions concerning Republican candidates for president, in a preview of CNN’s debate Monday night with seven GOP contenders.

CNN asked survey participants to express their opinions on 10 potential candidates. Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who has suggested he might run, had the highest favorability ranking.

Fifty-five percent of adults surveyed said they had a favorable opinion of Giuliani. He was followed by former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney with 39 percent, and U.S. Rep. Ron Paul of Texas with 34 percent.

Former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin earned the highest “unfavorability” rating: 52 percent of respondents said they had an unfavorable opinion of the former Alaska governor.

Palin was followed by former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich, of whom 44 percent of respondents said they had an unfavorable opinion.

Interestingly, the respondents also identified Palin as the Republican who represents values of Republicans.

The Democratic Party fared better than the Republican Party in the poll. While 55 percent of those surveyed said they had a favorable view of the Democratic Party; only 49 percent had a favorable view of the GOP.

© 2011 Keen News Service. All rights reserved.

—  John Wright

WATCH: Joel Burns, 12-year-old Sam Maden discuss Red Sox ‘It Gets Better’ video on CNN

Eight months removed from his viral speech, the gay Fort Worth councilman made yet another appearance on CNN last week — this time to talk about 12-year-old Sam Maden’s successful petition to get the Boston Red Sox to film an “It Gets Better” video. Watch the segment below.

“I’m proud of Sam and I think that his bold action is yet another example of people joining in this conversation about teenage bullying and suicide,” Burns said. “All of our kids’ lives have worth and even the children have a role in participating in that conversation. I’m so very glad that he did this.”

Also, Theatermania reports that Burns will guest-star June 25 in an off-Broadway production of My Big Gay Italian Wedding, at St. Luke’s Theatre in New York. Burns will officiate the marriage ceremony at the end of the play.

—  John Wright