Food pantry receives sizable donation from Hilton Anatole

Anatole 2

Part of the Anatole’s donation

Resource Center received a sizable donation on Friday from the Hilton Anatole.

After a conference ended on Thursday, the caterer asked hotel staff for a suggestion of where to donate food and other items that weren’t used. Several Anatole staff members including Hal Scott suggested the Resource Center’s food pantry. Scott is the brother of Paul Scott, executive director of AIDS Services of Austin and a former executive director of Resource Center.

Resource Center spokesman Rafael McDonnell said the donation included gallon containers of ketchup and salad dressing that would be used by the hot meals program and other needed items like hand sanitizer and replacement mop buckets.

In all, the donation filled nine pick-up trucks.

McDonnell said that despite the size of the donation, the need continues.

“The government is still closed and the need is still there,” he said.

The food pantry distributes seven tons of food a week. Half of its clients are also housing insecure.

—  David Taffet

DIFFA announces Style Ambassadors

The DIFFA Collection will be back next spring, and once again Jan Strimple will be producing the runway show. But before that, it’s the Style Ambassadors who have to do a lot of the work. This year, 17 men and women have been tapped to represent DIFFA in the community, raising awareness and money for AIDS treatment and research. That’s two more than the usual high of 15. The ambassadors are Simona Beal, John Bobbitt, Marty Collins, Peter Dauterman, Tommy DeAlano,Deanna DiPizio, Malcolm Gage (pictured), Stephen Giles, Kandis Hutchinson, Daniel Lewis, LeeAnne Locken, Vivian Lombardi, Tom Mason, Lance Avery Morgan, Troy Schiermeyer, James Shackelford and Paige Westhoff. The announcement was made at Dish Restaurant in the ilume last week.

The event will take place, as it has in recent years, at the Hilton Anatole on March 23. For more information, visit DIFFADallas.org.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Alden Clanahan to be honored by DIFFA

DIFFA’s 2012 collection Smoking Haute, returns to the Hilton Anatole on March 31, but the theme is already being tweaked ever-so-slightly following the unexpected death of fashion leader Alden Clanahan.

Clint Bradley, chairman of the DIFFA Dallas board of director, issued this statement about Clanahan and the collection:

“We at DIFFA/Dallas are honored to have known Alden Clanahan, enjoyed his great talents, and witnessed his passion for helping others. Alden’s years of service, dedication, and generosity towards DIFFA/Dallas will always be cherished and admired. Not only was Alden a Board member, a sponsor, and a patron but, Alden was an angel for DIFFA/Dallas. To honor Alden’s work and immeasurable impact for those living with HIV/AIDS, we will dedicate Collection 2012 as a celebration of his memory.”

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Out & Equal to honor Parker, Welts

Mayor Annise Parker

Out & Equal Workplace Advocates will honor Houston Mayor Annise Parker and Golden State Warriors President Rick Welts at its Leadership Celebration on March 14 in San Francisco.

In October, Out & Equal held its week-long Workplace Summit at the Hilton Anatole in Dallas. Because of rave reviews, the group plans to return in the next few years. Welts was among the speakers at the Dallas convention.

Now in its fifth year, the Leadership Celebration is a fundraising event that includes a hosted reception and dinner. Parker and Welts will be recognized as role models and inspirations in the movement to achieve equality in the workforce.

To attend the San Francisco event, register online.

The 2012 Workplace Summit will be in Baltimore on from Oct. 29-Nov 1.

—  David Taffet

GOProud leaders to speak at Log Cabin dinner

Jimmy LaSalvia, left, and Chris Barron

The Dallas chapter of Log Cabin Republicans has booked two leaders from GOProud — a competing gay Republican group — to speak at the chapter’s annual dinner in November.

According to an invitation from LCR Dallas, GOProud Executive Director Jimmy LaSalvia and Board Chairman Chris Barron will headline the 15th annual Grand Ol’ Party at the Hilton Anatole on Nov. 5.

“I’m pleased to report that Jimmy and Chris have agreed to fly from Washington DC to join us in Dallas for the Grand Ol’ Party,” LCR Dallas President Rob Schlein wrote atop an email invitation to the dinner. “They have an interesting history with Log Cabin Republicans and can tell you about their journey in founding a new organization.”

The invitation goes on to say: “Jimmy and Chris were both former employees at the national organization and co-founded GOProud. They have made national attention and have shown an ability to attract substantial ‘whose who’ in our world of politics to their advisory board. Help us welcome both Jimmy and Chris!”

Schlein told Instant Tea that although the two organizations might be considered competitors on a national level, he is friends with LaSalvia and Barron and maintains regular contact with them. Unlike Log Cabin, GOProud doesn’t have local chapters.

The dinner will be at 6:30 p.m. Nov. 5 at Nana Restaurant in the Anatole. For more info or to RSVP, go here.

—  John Wright

WORKING FOR EQUALITY

RAISING FUNDS  | Out & Equal DFW Council held “Deep in the Heart of Texas” at Times Ten Cellars on Aug. 18. The event was the organization’s fifth fundraiser to support its educational programming in the DFW area and to support scholarships to attend the 2011 Out & Equal Workplace Summit, set for Oct. 25-28 at the Hilton Anatole. Pictured are Gib Murray of Raytheon, left, Jeffrey Gorczynski of Citi, center, and Paul von Wupperfeld of Texas Instruments.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition September 2, 2011.

—  Michael Stephens

Margaret Cho, Andy Cohen to headline Out & Equal’s Workplace Summit in Dallas

If you didn’t know already, this year’s Out & Equal Workplace Summit happens right here in town. It’s gonna be huge. But then we just found out who the keynote speakers are and were kinda blown away.

Instant Tea has learned that the celebrity roster for the Workplace Summit will include actress Meredith Baxter, trans actress Candis Cayne, comedian Margaret Cho and Bravo’s Andy Cohen. OK, Cohen sometimes drives me nuts on Watch What Happens Live, but he’s kind of a big deal. The dude isn’t just a talk show host, he’s also Bravo’s senior veep of original programming and development.

So, go to the summit because of the work O&E does, but definitely stay for the primo gay celebs willing to come here for the event. Now that’s some A-list.

The summit will be Oct. 25–28 at the Hilton Anatole. To register, go here.

—  Rich Lopez

DPD’s full report on the assault of a Log Cabin Republicans member at the Hilton Anatole

Surely you recall the case of a Log Cabin Republicans member who was assaulted by a Marine at the Hilton Anatole during the gay GOP group’s National Convention last month. You may also remember that the Dallas Police Department initially declined to release its report from the incident. This prompted Instant Tea to file a request under the Texas Public Information Act, and earlier this week we obtained a copy of the report.

You can read the narrative sections of the report by going here and here. You’ll notice that we’ve redacted the names of the suspect, victim and witnesses. (Also, please excuse our underlines.) The first narrative was written by officers who responded to the Anatole. The second was written by an officer who interviewed the parties at DPD headquarters the next day.

According to the report, the victim and three of his friends clearly felt the incident was an anti-gay hate crime. They told police the suspect just walked up behind the victim, said, “What’s your problem, faggot?” and shoved him, cauing his head to strike a drinking glass, cutting his nose. The victim and his friends also pleaded with officers to take the suspect to jail — and even threatened to contact the media if they didn’t. But the officers chose instead to issue a citation, and allow the suspect to return to his room, due to “conflicting stories.”

The suspect claimed the victim had whistled and made sexual gestures toward another member of the suspect’s party. The suspect told police that when the victim refused to stop, he shoved him.

The next day, the victim and his partner gave written affidavits saying the victim had consumed up to 10 drinks prior to the incident at various locations, including JR’s and the Round-Up.

The suspect, meanwhile, said that when he approached the victim and asked him to stop making catcalls and sexual gestures, a small verbal argument ensued and the victim stood up from his chair. This caused the suspect to feel threatened, according to the report, and he shoved the victim down.

When the victim and suspect ran into each other at the police station, the suspect apologized and they “discussed that both of them were intoxicated and that each had a part in this event.”

“This is not a hate crime as the suspect did not single out the [victim] for his sexual orientation,” the report states. “During the heat of the altercation the suspect did call the [victim] a faggot. The [victim] stated that he did not have time to come back to Dallas to pursue this offense and was glad that the suspect apologized and recognized that his actions were wrong.”

 

—  John Wright

Dark horse Karger serious about presidential bid

Fred Karger speaks during the Log Cabin Republicans National Convention at the Hilton Anatole on April 29. (John Wright/Dallas Voice)

Openly gay candidate has Republican political experience that dates back to Gerald Ford and Reagan’s ’84 campaign

DAVID TAFFET | Staff Writer
taffet@dallasvoice.com

Fred Karger made history when he became not only the first gay candidate to register a run for the White House with the Federal Elections Commission, but also the first Jewish person ever to pursue the Republican nomination.

While he’s proud to be both, during a recent visit to Dallas Karger said he wants to “put the gay thing behind me.”

He said he looks forward to an article about his run for president that identified him as simply a presidential candidate rather than the gay presidential candidate.

Karger was in Dallas for the national Log Cabin Republicans convention held at the Anatole Hotel last weekend. He addressed the group at the opening meeting on Friday, April 29.

Karger was in Dallas looking for Log Cabin support, saying he wants them “to go out on a limb for me.”

While Karger understands his chances of receiving the Republican nomination are slim, he said he is running a serious campaign, and he hopes to be the first presidential candidate to receive an endorsement from the Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund.

Karger said he plans to participate in the debates, hoping to use his time to temper the anti-gay rhetoric of his party’s other presidential hopefuls.

And in a way, his campaign is a grand “It Gets Better” video. He said his visits to gay straight alliances and meetings with college groups around the country encouraged him to run so he could show LGBT youth that they can achieve anything. In his press release announcing his candidacy, Karger dedicated the day to the six gay teens who took their lives last fall.

Since forming his campaign committee a few weeks ago, Karger said he has made headway in the polls. In a Fox News poll out last week, Karger got 1 percent. That’s ahead of Buddy Roemer, Rudy Giuliani and Haley Barbour, all considered serious possibilities.

The poll was important to Karger, who wanted to be included in the first Republican, debate, sponsored by Fox News and held in South Carolina on Thursday night. To be included, he needed to be at 1 percent in five polls, to have a presidential committee or exploratory committee and pay a $25,000 entrance fee.

At this point, Karger is the only Republican with a campaign committee who is registered with the FEC. Several other candidates are in the exploratory stage.

He has ranked high enough in several polls, including two by Huffington Post. In a March 31 Saint Anselm College Republicans straw poll he finished first, ahead of Mitt Romney, and with three times the votes of Donald Trump, Tim Pawlenty or Ron Paul, and 10 times the votes of Mike Huckabee.

However, the Republican Party excluded Karger while allowing candidates like Herman Cain, the former CEO of Godfather’s Pizza.

Karger said the Saint Anselm poll is significant to him because that school is in New Hampshire, the state with the first primary.

Karger spent his career as a political strategist and his strategy in this election is to take the first primary and caucus states — Iowa and New Hampshire, both of which legally recognize same-sex marriage. Both are also heavily independent — 42 percent in New Hampshire and 37 percent in Iowa.

Karger said that people have left both parties in those states, but mostly the Republican Party because his party has moved too far to the right.

Karger has the background to be taken as a credible candidate by Republicans. He ran Ronald Reagan’s 1984 campaign, and he worked with Lee Atwater on the Willie Horton ads that helped propel George H.W. Bush into the White House.

Karger was also part of the Gerald Ford campaign committee.

Dolphin Group, Karger’s political consulting firm, has worked on hundreds of local and state elections for Republicans around the country for more than 30 years, he said.

After selling Dolphin Group, Karger became a different type of political activist.

When California’s Proposition 8 got on the ballot challenging same-sex marriage, Karger founded Californians Against Hate.

He initiated boycotts, including one targeting the Hyatt in San Diego whose owner was a major funder of Prop 8. It cost the company $1 million per month, according to the hotel’s own estimate.

Karger investigated the power of the Mormon Church in influencing votes, and after a 19-month investigation, the church was found guilty on 13 counts of campaign reporting violations.

That was the first time the California Fair Political Practices Commission had found a religion guilty of election irregularities.

“No one has gone against NOM like I have,” Karger said.

Karger noted that he battled Maggie Gallagher and the National Organization for Marriage and helped uncover their disregard for Maine’s election laws. NOM was ordered to follow election law and disclose its political contributors.

“Maggie Gallagher has blood on her hands,” Karger said, blaming the hate from her organization for the deaths of gay teens.

He called her disgusting and said he wonders why, if she believes in traditional marriage so much, she doesn’t wear a wedding ring.

“She a walking time bomb,” Karger said of Gallagher’s behavior.

Karger hardly sounds like a typical Republican when he discusses LGBT equality issues and he supported Hillary Clinton in the 2008 election. So he explained why he still calls himself a Republican.

“I grew up with Nelson Rockefeller,” he said. “I still believe in the principles of the Republican Party,” such as “keeping government out of our lives.”

And, he said, staying out of our lives includes allowing a woman the right to choose.

“I’m strong on national defense,” Karger added. “I’m a strong law and order guy.”

Rockefeller is best known as the governor who built New York’s state university system, and education is a top priority for Karger.

Karger said he wants to bring back that GOP of yesterday.

“I know there are a lot of dissatisfied centrists,” he said, and that’s who he’s appealing to.

He said he has planned his attack on his Republican opponents.

He’s going after Romney’s ties to the Mormon Church.

Just as Mike Dukakis was vulnerable on the release of Willie Horton, a prisoner who committed violent felonies after his parole, he said Huckabee should be too. Huckabee released Maurice Clemmons who later killed four police officers.

“Huckabee never showed remorse,” he said.

And without fanfare, presidential candidate Karger put his birth certificate on his website. He said he figures Donald Trump would find other things to attack him on, so why give him this one.

While running, he especially wants gay youth to hear his message.

“Come out to family, friends, coworkers,” he said.

—  John Wright

No hate crime in Log Cabin assault

The assault of a Log Cabin Republicans member at the Hilton Anatole in Dallas last weekend — during which the suspect called the victim a “faggot” – won’t be classified as a hate crime for FBI reporting purposes, according to Laura Martin, the Dallas Police Department’s LGBT liaison officer.

Instant Tea reported Tuesday that even though the Log Cabin member opted not to press charges against the suspect, the assault could still be classified as a bias-motivated incident to the FBI, which is required to track hate crimes nationwide. However, Martin said DPD’s intelligence unit has chosen not to classify the incident as a hate crime because it doesn’t appear the assault was motivated by anti-gay bias.

Martin said the suspect’s use of the word “faggot” took place in the heat of an argument between two groups that had established contact earlier in the evening.

“There’s no obvious proof that it’s a hate crime, that the entire contact was based on the suspect’s hatred of gay people,” Martin said. “There’s just no evidence of it, and in fact the complainant [victim] agrees with that. … The complainant doesn’t believe that he was targeted simply because he’s gay.”

—  John Wright