Rick Vanderslice makes radio show international

By the time you read this, Rick Vanderslice has already been out of the country for a day and is probably lounging on the beaches of South America. Vanderslice, the veteran broadcaster, who has hosted a very gay, liberal-leaning talk show at Rational Radio for a few years, has decided to take a escape the revenuers and head south (well, that’s my take on it). But that doesn’t mean the show it going anywhere.

Rick called me last week to say he was taking about six months to head for Argentina — only his third sabbatical in a long career. He’s not sure how long he’ll be there, he said (probably six months or so) but until he’s back on Texas soil, he will do the radio show via Skype, every weekday afternoon. (It may be a week or so before they work the kinks out, he said, so be patient for its return.)

He plans to have a few more international guests as well, including a semi-regular contributor who will also Skype from Moscow. But he’ll still deal with some local issues, so expect Dallas folks to keep appearing on the show. (I’ll still be contributing on occasion, when they ask me.)

Rick is also gonna be sending the Voice updates from Argentina, little postcards about gay life in South America.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

News: Liberal Rally, Archie, Gay Youth, Tyra Banks, Moscow

 road Former "Family Values" Australian MP David Campbell on the sex scandal he was caught in this summer: "People keep asking about (the scandal), but I'm keeping quiet because it's had no influence on my decision (to resign)."

 road Project Runway contestant Mondo Guerra comes out as HIV positive during an episode of the show.

Lm  road Tens of thousands show up at a liberal political rally in front of the Lincolm Memorial. Unlike last month's, this rally is thankfully Glenn Beck and Sarah Palin-free.

 road Great news: A post-Yuri Luzhkov Moscow brings the first gay rights protest to that city in years.

 road CNN fired Rick Sanchez for bigoted statements. No doubt he'll turn up elsewhere soon.

 road Korean mothers take out ad against a show aired on SBS that features a gay storyline: “If my son becomes gay and dies from AIDs after watching ‘Life Is Beautiful’, SBS must take responsibility!”

 road Tom Cruise in disguise as a Russian soldier in Mission: Impossible 4 in Prague.

 road The Archie Comics’ issue of Veronica that features the debut of Kevin Keller sells out – a first for the comic book company.

 road Tyra Banks' head gets webbed. Tyra

 road 500 people remembered Anti-gay bully victim Seth Walsh in California last night.

 road Tyler Clementi's parents speak: "Regardless of legal outcomes, our hope is that our family's personal tragedy will serve as a call for compassion, empathy and human dignity. Needless to say, public attention has been intense. The outpouring of emotion and support from our friends, community and family — and from people across the country — has been humbling and deeply moving."

 road 13-year old Asher Brown, who killed himself last week, is laid to rest.

 road Rihanna might soon be a married woman.

 road It looks like Chord Overstreet will not be Chris Colfer’s boyfriend on Glee. That leaves Darren Criss as the likely possibility.


Towleroad News #gay

—  John Wright

Nikolai Alekseev, Gay Activists Arrested in Protest of Moscow Mayor

Alekseev

UK Gay News reports that eleven activists including Nikolai Alekseev have been arrested during a protest outside Moscow City Hall:

"They were taking part in a demonstration against the homophobic mayor of Moscow, Yuri Luzhkov, and his 'faggots' remark which a Moscow court ruled recently was not hate speech. Those arrested were said to have chained themselves to the railings outside City Hall. Also reported arrested was a reporter from Agence France Presse.  She was seen by activists being hauled into a police van.  But Mr. Alekseev told UK Gay News later that she was not taken to the police station and was presumably released without charge. The eleven activists were taken to the Tverskoy Police Station in Moscow. Mr. Alekseev said that he was injured during his arrest. He was speaking by telephone from inside a police van from which  other  activists were heard chanting 'happy birthday Mayor Luzhkov' – it is the Mayor’s 74th birthday today."

The AP adds:

"The two dozen demonstrators had been protesting the policies of Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov, who has called homosexuals 'satanic' and thwarted attempts to hold a gay pride rally in the city. Police detained most, if not all, of those participating in Tuesday's rally, which was held without a required permit near city hall. The activists handcuffed themselves to a monument for the 13th-century Russian prince who founded Moscow, displayed a papier-mache mummy resembling Luzhkov and unfurled posters ridiculing the mayor and his billionaire wife, Yelena Baturina. The activists said they objected to Luzhkov's recent use of the word 'fag,' and a court's subsequent ruling that the word could not be deemed offensive."

Alekseev called for the rally after being abducted by men thought to be with the Russian secret police over the weekend. 


Towleroad News #gay

—  John Wright

Leading Gay Russian Activist Nikolai Alekseev Safe in Moscow, Says He Was Harassed, Drugged by Captors

Leading Russian gay activist Nikolai Alekseev is safely back in Moscow, and has written an account of his harrowing abduction by captors thought to be with Russia's secret police. Alekseev says the captors harassed, threatened, and possibly drugged him.

Alexeyev Early Saturday morning Alekseev left the following message on Facebook:

"My dear friends, I just entered Moscow. Thank you to all of you for support. All I want now is to brush my teeth and to shave. I will try to describe all that happened tonight! I never thought so many people care for me, it brings tears to my eyes."

Alekseev has written the personal account of his abduction HERE (translated via Google).

Radio Free Europe reports:

"A spokeswoman for the airport told Russian news agencies that Alekseyev was detained after refusing to take off his shoes at the security check. The activist rejects this account and claims airport security officials arbitrarily detained him for two hours before handing him over to a group of unidentified men in plainclothes. He told RFE/RL that he was then driven to a police station in Kashira, a small town some 100 kilometers south of Moscow, where he spent the next two days."

In his personal account, Alekseev notes that he discovered his location by using an iPad, which the authorities had not taken from him.

Radio Free Europe continues:

"[In Kashira], he says he was threatened, harassed, and possibly drugged. 'The first night, I slept on a chair and a table. I spent the second night on a kind of banquette. They gave me water, but I think it was laced with something because my reactions were very slow and I felt completely disoriented. I was given very simple food like biscuits,' Alekseyev says. Conflicting reports had emerged in the wake of Alekseyev's mysterious disappearance. While the activist did not respond to repeated calls to his mobile telephone, news agencies said they had received text messages from him saying he had been taken to Belarus and intended to seek political asylum there. Alekseyev denies such intentions and says the text messages were sent by his captors from his confiscated telephone."

During his abduction, Alekseev was pressured to withdraw a complaint he had filed with the European Court of Human Rights over Moscow's banning of Gay Pride parades.


Towleroad News #gay

—  John Wright

Moscow mayor is at it again

Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov
Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov

Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov has once again delcared that there will be no gay Pride parade in his city, calling such events “satanic.”

AFP News Service reports that Luzhkov told an education conference, “A gay parade… cannot be called anything but a Satanic act. We haven’t permitted such a parade and we won’t permit it in the future.”

Luzhkov first linked gay Pride with Satan back in 2007, leading LGBT rights activists there to sue him — unsuccessfully — for libel. This time around, Luzhkov also called for gay Pride marchers to be punished: “It’s high time that we stop propagating nonsense discussions about human rights, and bring to bear on them the full force and justice of the law.”

Gay rights activist Nikolai Alexeyev said Pride organizers are going ahead with their plans, despite Luzhkov’s declarations. Alexeyev said, “”We don’t plan to make any changes. We still plan to hold a gay parade on May 29.”

—  admin