Save the Day: Get registered and VOTE


There are less than three weeks left — 18 days, as of today (Friday, Sept. 23), to be exact — to register to vote in what may be the most important election of our lifetimes. And no, considering the candidate the Republicans have put on the ballot, that’s not hyperbole.

And remember, there is more at stake here than the presidency. We will be electing U.S. senators, U.S. representatives, state leaders. The future of the U.S. Supreme Court is on the line.

Are you registered? Do you even know for sure? Find all the information you need to know for sure at Texas’ statewide elections website. Dallas County voters can check here for their status, and Tarrant County voters can look here.

And now, just to drive the point home, here’s a whole shit-ton of famous people talking about how important it is to vote Nov. 8.

(Seriously. Register. Vote.)

—  Tammye Nash

While Drumpf continues to mount campaign of hate, Hillary reaches out with love

The internet and social media have made it amazingly possible to get a political message out to people that really resonates with constituents without having to pay Super Bowl prices. Take, for instance, this well-produced 75 second video from the Hillary Clinton camp, that reaches out to LGBT voters. Not that she needs to, but have you seen anything like then from the GOP? Like… ever?

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Bill Clinton wore a lovely blue pantsuit to the Democratic Convention


Bill Clinton (Photo (c) Washington Blade by Michael Key)

Presidential nominee Hillary Clinton’s husband Bill wore a blue tie and white shirt under a dark blue pantsuit as he introduced his wife at the Democratic National Convention on Tuesday night, July 26.

First gentleman watchers speculated that Mr. Clinton’s suit may have been designed by Hart, Schaffner Marx or Hickey Freeman and expected a buying frenzy when the actual label is revealed.

Mr. Clinton, who looks like he had his hair done for the convention, has been sitting in front row center of the balcony of the Philadelphia Convention Center, acting as the charming host, surrounded by Democratic dignitaries as his wife campaigns before addressing the convention on Thursday.

The presidential candidate’s husband spoke about Mrs. Clinton’s experience but apparently has had quite a career for himself as well. In addition to two terms as governor of Arkansas, he served as president of the United States. He also addressed the Democratic Convention in 1988 as the keynote speaker and is expected to be a trusted adviser in his wife’s administration.

Dallas Voice has sent a message to Dallas-based delegates to find out if the potential first gentleman can bake chocolate chip cookies.

Now, can we stop talking about who designed Mrs. Obama’s dress and concentrate on how she gave one of the best speeches ever delivered at a political convention?

—  David Taffet

Clinton pays unexpected visit to Pulse, meets with victims, families

Screen shot 2016-07-22 at 3.34.27 PM

Tweet by NPR’s Tamara Keith showing Hillary Clinton talking to first responders outside Pulse nightclub during an unannounced visit to Orlando Friday, July 22.

With the start of the Democratic National Convention just a few days away — and with just about the whole country anxiously waiting for her to announce her choice of a running mate — presumptive Democratic nominee for president Hillary Clinton instead chose to make an unannounced visit Friday, July 22, to Orlando where she met privately with survivors and families of victims of the June 12 mass shooting at the LGBT nightclub Pulse, according to The New Civil Rights Movement and other sources.

Clinton also held a roundtable discussion with the victims and family members and community leaders, before visiting the site of the nightclub to pay her respects and meet with first responders.

According to a tweet by NBC News reporter Alex Seitz-Wald, staff a Clinton’s headquarters in Brooklyn went into a meeting at 3 p.m. expecting to hear who the candidate had chosen as VP, but were told they have to wait until “an undisclosed time” to find out that info.

Jennifer King with Associated Press Radio tweeted that after meeting with victims, families and community leaders, Clinton “is saying we need to stand united against bigotry.” BuzzFeedNews political reporter Ruby Cramer tweeted that the candidate said, “It’s still dangerous to be LGBT in America…an unfortunate fact but one that needs to be said.” And Bloomberg Politics reporter Jennifer Epstein tweeted that Clinton told those in Orlando, “I really am here to listen to what your experiences have been and wha twe do need to do together.”

—  Tammye Nash

Not in my America!


The Republicans just spent a week trying to build a winning hand, but proved that the only card they have left to play is Trump-ed up fear


Haberman-Hardy-I admit it. I watched the Republican National Convention.

It left me very confused, because speech after speech by second-tier GOP luminaries played the only card left in the Republican hand: fear.

We should be afraid of the crime wave sweeping America! We should be afraid of all the criminal illegal Mexicans pouring across our borders! We should be afraid of the terrorists that are slaughtering more people now in America than ever! We should be afraid of the economic disaster the Obama presidency has wrought on America! We should be afraid of the weakened state of defense! We should be afraid of Obamacare! We should be afraid of transgender people invading our son’s and daughter’s bathrooms! We should be afraid of the massive unemployment that this administration has caused and even more fearful of Hillary Clinton continuing on the same trajectory! We should be afraid of the elitism! We are a country in a crisis!

I think I ran out of exclamation points.

What amazes me is that every speaker — with the possible exception of Mrs. Trump — gave the same speech.

More amazing is the country these people are describing. It is an America largely based on fiction, an America that exists only on Fox News and in the minds of the huddled “preppers” who sit in their shelters awaiting the end times.

It is a completely different America than the one in which I live.

In my America, crime statistics show a steady decline in violent crime. In fact, a report from the Brookings Institute shows violent crime has fallen 51 percent since 1991, and is at one of the lowest rates since 1970.

In my America, the rate of illegal immigration has stabilized not increased, and in the case of Mexican immigrants it is actually declining.

And by the way, those illegal immigrants pay taxes. According to the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy, in 2013 they paid $7 billion in sales taxes, $1.1 billion in income taxes and $3.6 billion in property taxes.

And as far as their “criminal” behavior — well, of the 14,196 murders committed in 2013, a frightening total of eight were committed by illegal immigrants.

In my America, the economic disaster is the one we are still recovering from — and it started during the Bush administration. Stocks are at all-time highs, and the last report shows unemployment has fallen from close to 10 percent when Obama took office in 2008 to the current rate of 4.9 percent.

Sounds like an economic recovery to me.

In my America, our military spending is higher than the next six countries’ spending combined, including China, Russia, Saudi Arabia, the United Kingdom and India. If anything, we need to cut back on that spending.

In my America, the Affordable Care Act has resulted in fewer people being uninsured. The number dropped from 41.8 million uninsured in 2013 to 33.0 million 2014 (last year available so far). Not everyone, but a pretty good success in a short time, and this in spite of the fact that many states declined to expand Medicaid to help their citizens afford insurance.

In my America, transgender people just want to use the toilet when they go to a public restroom, just like everyone else. In fact, the number of transgender people lurking in bathrooms to prey on unsuspecting people is exactly ZERO. The alleged “cases” that have been reported have all proven to be hoaxes generated by right-wing blogs.

In my America, the elitism I see is a presidential candidate giving interviews sitting in a golden chair in a penthouse apartment of a building with his name emblazoned in gold on the side. That qualifies as elite in my book, as does his private jet and helicopter.

In my America, I am not as afraid of terrorists sneaking into the country as I am of home-grown terrorists staging standoffs with government agents and bombing abortion clinics and shooting up gay nightclubs. And statistically, I am more likely to be killed by my own furniture falling on me than a terrorist.

So all this fear-mongering about our country in crisis? Well, the crisis I see is the very real possibility that the fearmongers will gain the White House. And that would be a big problem in my book.

Take a look at the GOP platform and if you are anyone but a straight, white Protestant you will find something to give you shivers.

The week-long fear fest of the Republican National Convention comes down to one thing: They offer our country a single item. They have come to the end of their deck and all they have left is their “Trump” card: It’s called Fear.

Hardy Haberman is a longtime local LGBT activist and board member for the Woodhull Freedom Alliance. His blog is at

—  Tammye Nash

Clinton, Trump big Super Tuesday winners

By Lisa Keen

Keen News Service


Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton

Clinton’s march to the Democratic presidential nomination was strengthened by southern state primaries. Rubio’s prospects for winning the Republican nomination appeared to be slipping away quickly. Meanwhile, the battle for the Republican nomination has turned into an ugly war of insults that threatens to tear the party apart.

Clinton emerged the victor in South Carolina last Saturday and in seven out of 11 Democratic contests March 1, as she trounced U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders. Clinton won Georgia, Alabama, Virginia, Arkansas, Tennessee, Texas and — the only non-southern state — Massachusetts.

Sanders won in Oklahoma and in three non-southern states — Vermont, Colorado and Minnesota.

In the five-man Republican field, real estate mogul Donald Trump also won eight out of 11 contests, U.S. Senator Ted Cruz won two, and Rubio won one.

LGBT Democrats appeared to be solidly behind Clinton in all nine of the southern states and split in the other primary/caucus states. While there was no exit poll data available regarding the LGBT vote, the positions of LGBT community and Democratic leaders showed a pattern similar to that in South Carolina: solidly for Clinton.

In South Carolina, all the visible support in the LGBT community was behind Clinton, a phenomenon similar to that of the African American vote (84 percent of which went to Clinton).

The South Carolina Equality Coalition endorsed Clinton, and about 200 people attended its fundraiser for her February 25. SCEC also organized a door-to-door canvas to get out the vote on primary day and urged LGBT people to show their support for Clinton outside CNN’s Democratic town hall February 23. Clinton gave the keynote address at the SCEC’s annual dinner last November.

Coalition Chair Malissa Burnette, one of the attorneys for plaintiffs in South Carolina’s marriage equality case, said she supported Clinton because Clinton really understands LGBT issues and has “concrete plans” to address them.

Burnette said she saw no organized LGBT support for Sanders, and this reporter found only one activist to say that, if he was “pressed to pick,” he would “probably” support Sanders.

Warren Redman-Gress, executive director of the Alliance for Full Acceptance, a non-profit group working for LGBT equality, said the Human Rights Campaign “came into South Carolina with a huge effort to get out the LGBT vote for Clinton.”

I haven’t seen any LGBT organizational endorsement or push for Sanders,” he said. The AFFA, as a a 501(c)(3), cannot make endorsements.

Linda Ketner, who made a strong bid for a Congressional seat in South Carolina in 2008 and is a co-founder of AFFA and the SC Equality Coalition, said she thinks Clinton and Sanders are “equal in terms of support of and for our community.” But she added that Clinton “would have a better chance of moving pro LGBT legislation through an obdurate Congress” than Sanders.

That pattern of solid LGBT support appeared to hold up in Georgia and Virginia, too. In Virginia, openly gay state Sen. Adam Ebbin and longtime openly gay elected official Jay Fisette of Arlington said they were supporting Clinton.

I have always liked Hillary. She is strong, capable and experienced and I think she would be excellent President and commander-in-chief,” said Fisette. “I do believe she’s been unfairly attacked in the past by Republicans who have attempted to preemptively damage her. Bernie has had an illustrious career and continues to make a difference, yet as an elected official, I also value pragmatism and comprise balanced with progressive values. That’s Hillary.”

In Georgia, a Feb. 11 survey of nearly 700 readers of the LGBT news organization Georgia Voice found 54 percent supported Clinton, 40.5 percent for Sanders, and 5.5. percent for others. The paper reported that state LGBT leaders supporting Clinton include State Rep. Karla Drenner, Georgia Equality Chair Glen Paul Freedoman and Georgia Stonewall Democrats Chair Colton Griffin.

In Texas, former Houston Mayor Annise Parker backed Clinton. So did openly LGBT state Reps. Mary Gonzalez and Celia Israel.

There was less information about communities in non-southern states, but in Minnesota, openly gay state Rep. Karen Clark endorsed Sanders early on and introduced him to a rally in Minneapolis last May. And openly gay U.S. Rep. Jared Polis of Colorado endorsed Clinton, but Sanders took that state.


Gay Republicans consider Rubio

LGBT Republicans appeared to be moving toward Rubio last week, but it’s unclear whether Rubio’s record — winning only one out of 15 primary or caucus contests during the past month — will sustain his bid for the nomination.

As president of the national Log Cabin Republicans group, Gregory Angelo declined to comment on what’s happening in the primaries.

“We have individual members supporting — and in many cases, volunteering for — all of the candidates still in the race.

Former Log Cabin President Rich Tafel doesn’t claim to have “the pulse” of the LGBT Republican community, but he said he’s met “a few” who support Trump.

“My guess is there is deeper support for Trump among many who do not articulate it,” said Tafel. In fact, Angelo has, in a number of interviews with mainstream media, has described Trump as “the most pro-gay” candidate running for the Republican presidential nomination.

But overall, Tafel said his “sense” of things is that “the establishment gays in D.C. have shifted to Rubio” since former Florida Governor Jeb Bush pulled out of the campaign after the February 20 South Carolina GOP primary.

Mimi Planas, president of Log Cabin in Miami, said she, too, believes “most Gay Republicans are leaning towards Marco Rubio” now, though she said “a few” are leaning towards Trump. And Paul Singer, the head of American United political action committee that supports candidates who support marriage for same-sex couples, is reportedly set to be named Rubio’s national finance chairman.

In Dallas, Metroplex Republicans chair Rob Shlein is supporting Trump. Log Cabin Dallas doesn’t endorse in primary races.

Combat among the five Republican candidates intensified significantly following the South Carolina primary. First, they traded insults during a nationally televised debate on CNN — Trump deriding Rubio for having “problems with your credit cards;” Rubio calling Trump a “con artist” and accusing him of hiring illegal workers; and Cruz hammering home the point that Trump has given thousands of dollars to “open border politicians.”

The following day, in front of a campaign audience in Dallas, Rubio claimed that, backstage at the debate the night before, Trump was having such a “meltdown” he needed a full-length mirror “maybe to make sure his pants weren’t wet.” Trump, at his own event, splashed a bottle of water across the stage to demonstrate how Rubio “sweats … like he had just jumped into a swimming pool with his clothes on.”

There was some talk of issues by Republicans.

Ohio Governor John Kasich set himself apart from the four other Republican presidential hopefuls during the February 25 debate in Houston. He was asked whether he would stand up for business vendors who cite their religious beliefs to justify refusing service to same-sex couples. He reiterated that he does not “favor” same-sex marriage and believes religious institutions “should be able to practice the religion that they believe in.”

But look, the court has ruled and I’ve moved on,” said Kasich. “And what I’ve said…is — Look, where does it end?” said Kasich. “If you’re in the business of selling things, if you’re not going to sell to somebody you don’t agree with — OK, ‘Today, I’m not going to sell to somebody who’s gay and tomorrow maybe I won’t sell to somebody who’s divorced.’

If you’re in the business of commerce, conduct commerce,” said Kasich. “That’s my view. And if you don’t agree with their lifestyle, say a prayer for them when they leave [the shop] and hope they change their behavior.”

Those remarks, said Tafel, won over at least some LGBT Republicans.

The primary action moves now to five other states this weekend — Maine, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana and Nebraska. And next Tuesday, March 8, voting takes place in Michigan, Mississippi, Idaho, and Hawaii.

© 2016 Keen News Service. All rights reserved.

—  David Taffet

Clinton campaign video: ‘All love is equal’

Screen shot 2015-06-24 at 4.22.23 PMHillary Clinton, former First Lady, former U.S. senator, former U.S. Secretary of State and current Democratic candidate for president, today (Wednesday, June 24) unveiled a 2 1/2-minute video, called “Equality,” in which Clinton calls for legal recognition of same-sex marriage.

Release of the video comes just hours before the next rulings — possibly including a ruling on marriage equality — are scheduled to be released by the U.S. Supreme Court. With seven decisions expected to be released before the end of this session, the court has scheduled rulings to be announced Thursday, June 25, Friday, June 26 and Monday, June 28.

The video includes audio from Clinton’s speech earlier this month in New York, playing alongside images and audio of happy same-sex couples proposing or exchanging bows. In the speech, Clinton declares:

“Some have suggested that gay rights and human rights are separate and distinct. But in fact they are one and the same. Being LGBT doesn’t make you less human. And that is why gay rights are human rights, and human rights are gay rights.”

—  Tammye Nash

When Gov. Perry makes homophobic comments, it’s not news


Gov. Rick Perry has oral sex with a corny dog

I’ve had a number of people send me copies of articles about Gov. Rick Perry making homophobic comments in San Francisco this week. They wondered: Did I miss it?

Nope. Didn’t miss it. Just didn’t think Perry making stupid comments rated as news anymore.

We’ve covered Perry’s self-hating homophobia. Former state Rep. Glen Maxey, who served in the Texas House of Representatives with Perry, even wrote a book about Perry’s closet. For anyone interested, the book’s still available on Amazon.

So when Perry equates homosexuality to alcoholism, we have to wonder. He was in San Francisco. Was he once again that tempted? Overwhelmed? Unable to control either his drinking or his libido?

But is Perry’s stupidity news? No. But we are excited about another Rick Perry run for president. Please run. Please. It’ll be so much fun. Even if you don’t run, could you please, please at least have a debate with Hillary?


Gov. Rick Perry’s Brokeback Mountain ad from his last presidential bid

—  David Taffet

Dallas Voice’s Chance Browning and his Hillary shoes urge Clinton to run


Chance Browning, left, Travis Pelham and CJ Vandyke

165461_10152778184545637_2120029370_nDallas Voice/Digital Seltzer’s Chance Browning said his moment of fame at a rally in Irving for Hillary Clinton last night came because of his shoes.

Browning was one of more than 40 people who gathered across the street from the Four Seasons Hotel in Irving at about 6 p.m. last night to urge the former Secretary of State to run for president. The rally was organized by the Ready For Hillary PAC.

“We saw her motorcade, but couldn’t see her come in,” Browning said.

Clinton, in Dallas for the opening of the George Bush Library today, delivered her first paid speech since leaving the Cabinet. She spoke to the National Multi-Housing Council’s board of directors. According to the Washington Post, she spoke about international affairs, the economy and the role of rental housing in the U.S.

But what impressed us most about the Post’s article was its closing line:

“It’s never too early to start rallying support. I think she’s perfectly poised to run in 2016,” Browning said.

Oh, and the shoes. Browning said he got them online about two years ago but the link to them is gone.


—  David Taffet

President Obama issues memorandum on protecting LGBTs abroad

President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton

Four days in advance of  Human Rights Day on Saturday, Dec. 10,  President Barack Obama today issued a presidential memorandum “to ensure that U.S. diplomacy and foreign assistance promote and protect the human rights of LGBT persons,” according to a statement just released by the White House press office.

The statement sent out by the White House includes these comments by the president:

“The struggle to end discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) persons is a global challenge, and one that is central to the United States commitment to promoting human rights.  I am deeply concerned by the violence and discrimination targeting LGBT persons around the world — whether it is passing laws that criminalize LGBT status, beating citizens simply for joining peaceful LGBT pride celebrations, or killing men, women, and children for their perceived sexual orientation.  That is why I declared before heads of state gathered at the United Nations, “no country should deny people their rights because of who they love, which is why we must stand up for the rights of gays and lesbians everywhere.”  Under my Administration, agencies engaged abroad have already begun taking action to promote the fundamental human rights of LGBT persons everywhere.  Our deep commitment to advancing the human rights of all people is strengthened when we as the United States bring our tools to bear to vigorously advance this goal.”

The memorandum from Obama directs agencies to combat the criminalization of LGBT status or conduct abroad; protect vulnerable LGBT refugees and asylum seekers; leverage foreign assistance to protect human rights and advance nondiscrimination; ensure swift and meaningful U.S. responses to human rights abuses of LGBT persons abroad; engage international organizations in the fight against LGBT discrimination, and report on progress.

I give the president credit for issuing the memorandum at the same time he’s gearing up for what will likely be a tough re-election campaign during which opponents will no doubt use his stance and actions on LGBT issues against him. But I still have to point out that we as LGBT people still face discrimination and inequality right here in the good old U.S.-of-A:

• Our marriages are legally recognized at the federal level and they aren’t recognized in the VAST majority of state and local jurisdictions. We want the Defense of Marriage Act repealed and local and state ordinances and constitutional amendments prohibiting recognition of our relationships need to be overturned.

• There is still no federal protection against workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation and/gender expression and gender identity. Congress needs to pass — the president needs to sign — the Employment Non-Discrimination Act.

• Even though there is now a federal hate crimes law that includes LGBT people, as well as similar laws at many state and local levels, those laws are not well enforced.

Anti-LGBT bullying remains a deadly problem in our schools and our workplaces and on the Internet. We’ve made progress in combating such bullying, but not nearly enough. Dedicate the resources necessary to address the issue effectively.

So let’s applaud our president for the steps he has — and is — taking. There’s no doubt Obama has been more open than any other president about addressing LGBT issues and we have seen great strides forward toward equality during his administration. But there’s a long way to go yet, and we need to make sure that the president — and all our elected officials — know they can’t just rest on their laurels.

—  admin