Weekly Best Bets

Friday 03.25

Don’t mess with the jester
We’ve heard the sad clown bit before, but we think Verdi might have been the first with his opera Rigoletto. Ol’ Rig is a jester of the tragic kind, which is only made worse when a bunch of noblemen set out to do some major harm. And trust us, that’s not even the half of it.

DEETS: Winspear Opera House, 2403 Flora St. 7:30 p.m. $59–$415. ATTPAC.org.

 

Saturday 03.26

Dinner’s nice but dessert is better
You might think “progressive supper” when someone says dinner at one place, dessert at another. No Tie Dinner is so not that. Have dinner with your friends, but convene for the most fabulous sweet endings at the posh Dessert Party later. Plus, it all benefits AIDS Services of Dallas, which is probably the sweetest deal of all.

DEETS: Frontiers of Flight Museum, 6911 Lemmon Ave. 8 p.m. $50. NoTieDinner.org.

 

Sunday 03.27

Leave you wanting Maher
There is one thing we have to be thankful to Sarah Palin and the Tea Party for and that’s Bill Maher. Mixing humor and politics, the funny man is never without fodder or even a serious commentary thanks to them. And when it comes to LGBT rights, Maher’s been a vocal heavyweight in our corner. He’s practically the perfect man.

DEETS: Winspear Opera House, 2403 Flora St. 8 p.m. $45–$75. ATTPAC.org.

—  John Wright

What’s Brewing: Whacko Thursday with Westboro Baptist, Cindy Jacobs and Michele Bachmann

Your weekday morning blend from Instant Tea:

Michele Bachmann

1. Calling her a “fag hag,” a spokeswoman for Westboro Baptist Church announced that the Phelps clan will picket the funeral of actress Elizabeth Taylor. Margie J. Phelps, daughter of the church’s leader Fred Phelps, said Taylor “joined Michael Jackson and Heath Ledger in hell.”

2. Our old friend Cindy Jacobs of Red Oak, Texas, preached at Sarah Palin’s home church earlier this month and said she hopes to have 500,000 “intercessors” mobilized for the 2012 elections “to shift this nation to righteousness and justice.” Watch video above.

3. Speaking in Iowa on Wednesday, likely GOP presidential candidate Michele Bachmann praised voters for ousting state Supreme Court judges who legalized same-sex marriage, calling them “black-robed monsters.” (UPDATE: Bachmann’s adviser’s announced today that she is likely to form a presidential exploratory committee.)

—  John Wright

What’s Brewing: Sarah Palin on DOMA; anti-gay preacher Grant Storms on arrest; Prop 8 update

Grant Storms

Your weekday morning blend from Instant Tea:

1. Grant Storms, the anti-gay Louisiana pastor who was arrested last week for allegedly jerking off in his van while looking at kids on a playground, insists he wasn’t really masturbating — he just had his hand in his pants. In a bizarre press conference Tuesday, Storms claimed that reports saying he confessed to the crime are untrue. But he also said he knows what he did was wrong, and admitted he has a problem with pornography, which he’d been looking at an hour before the incident. Also, he’s sorry for those anti-gay protests he led at Southern Decadence and is asking for forgiveness. Well, we’re not going to forgive you just yet, Mr. Storms, but we will give you some free legal advice: Shut the hell up! Towleroad has video of Storms’ press conference.

2. Taking a page out of former Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert’s playbook, Sarah Palin slammed President Barack Obama for his decision to no longer defend the Defense of Marriage Act. In a statement she gave to the National Organization for Marriage, Palin accused Obama of flip-flopping on DOMA, which is course patently false. Obama has said all along that he wants to repeal DOMA. We’d suggest that if Palin wants a real example of flip-flopping, she should refer back to Leppert.

3. California Attorney General Kamala Harris filed a brief Tuesday in the Prop 8 case urging a federal appeals court to allow same-sex marriages to resume immediately in the state. “For 845 days, Proposition 8 has denied equality under law to gay and lesbian couples,” Harris wrote. “Each and every one of those days, same-sex couples have been denied their right to convene loved ones and friends to celebrate marriages sanctioned and protected by California law. Each one of those days, loved ones have been lost, opportunities have been missed, and justice has been denied.”

—  John Wright

FEEDBACK: More on District 14, Leppert’s tweet on DOMA decision

More on District 14

I appreciate your having published my letter in the Feb. 18 Dallas Voice (“Looking at District 14”). And in the interest of fairness, I want to add two more sentences about Angela Hunt.

Angela is not just the incumbent, she is a good friend to the LGBT community, standing by us, parading with us, even proposing a creative funding option when the city erased four of our local HIV/AIDS outreach/education/prevention programs from the 2010 budget.

Incumbent Angela Hunt and challenger James Nowlin — come on, lucky fellow District 14 residents! Register and vote!
Phyllis Guest, Dallas

Leppert’s Tweet on DOMA decision

Responses to an Instant Tea blog post regarding Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert’s tweet criticizing President Barack Obama for directing the Justice Department to stop defending the Defense of Marriage Act in federal court:

As a recent new resident to Dallas from Iowa, as well as a civic/community activist for the LBGT and other diverse communities, this is just plain awful and beyond ignorant of Leppert. Lord, I guess stupid exists all over this country. I’m sure those in Dallas are smarter than Leppert’s way of thinking.
Carlos

He’s been reading Sarah Palin’s playbook really closely:
1. Quit your job early — check
2. Say ignorant things about the LGBT community — check
3. Look stupid and incompetent on TV and lose your election — in progress.
Michael

In his first step towards candidacy, Tom chooses to come out of the gate with divisiveness. He questions the leadership skills of our president, yet his embracing the gay community when it was politically convenient only to abandon those who embraced him when it no longer serves his purpose shows a total lack of integrity. Tweeting Tom has let his hypocritical fingers expose him as just another political opportunist whose own idea of leadership is to follow whatever it takes to get elected. So disappointed. So unnecessary.
John McGill

Helen Keller could see through Tom Leppert. I’m glad he’s gone!
Okln

I don’t think anyone who had an ounce of knowledge of local politics ever believed that Tom Leppert was any sort of “friend” to the local GLBT community. One need only re-examine all the shenanigans which went on in the election vs. Ed Oakley to find your answers.
Kevin Hollingsworth

Disgusting. So when’s rally? I’m in.
Scott Stevenson

Sad. Very sad. I can’t tell you who I will be voting for in the upcoming Senate election, but I do know who I will NOT be voting for!
Charles Goodman

I call bullshit on this. Now you see why he joined the First Baptist Church of Dallas — pandering to that crowd early for votes. I attended a lunch two years ago when the Dallas gay chamber hosted a press tour. Tom Leppert attended and spoke so highly of the LGBT community and blah blah blah. Politics as usual. You sorry SOB.
Uncle JoJo

Leppert is an opportunist. It was obvious when he took office and it still is. He will say and do whatever he needs to gain what he wants. His benevolence toward the LGBT community was a step of expediency. It avoided any direct conflicts and kept him from gaining any strong enemies. On a local level, the LGBT community in Dallas has clout. On a state level, not so much. And so, under the bus we go.
Hardy Haberman

I’m just left wondering why he was invited to participate in not one, but two gay Pride parades. Anyone who pays attention to politics could see this day coming from a hundred miles away and knew that Leppert was not a true friend of the community. I guess the upside is that maybe this will come back to bite him in the ass. If there’s going to be hate in office, I’d rather it be the hate I know than the hate that’s trying to be my friend.
Wonk

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition Feb. 25.

—  John Wright

From ‘mama grizzly’ to fantasy cougar?

Sarah Palin: Cougar-licious?

I got an e-mail today from a representative with Cougared.com, “the leading cougar dating website” (I didn’t even know cougar dating websites existed!) telling me that the site has released the results of a recent survey of “cubs” (younger men who date — or want to date — older women). And according to The Cub Report (Seriously, that’s what they called the report on the survey results), “high-powered political hockey mom” Sarah Palin is their “ultimate fantasy cougar woman.”

Palin won out over a “short list” of candidates that included “cougar icons” Demi Moore, Courteney Cox, Madonna, Kim Cattrall and Janice Dickinson — and apparently, even the folks who run the website were astounded, since they wrote in their press release: “The surprise finding was one of several fascinating revelations” to come out of the survey that was “designed to get inside the mind of the modern younger man.”

Here are some of those other “fascinating revelations” (Comments in parentheses are mine, not the website’s or the report’s):

• The perfect age range for a cougar is 41-45 (even if I were straight and tried, I couldn’t be a prime cougar because I am too old).

• 1 in 5 cougar chases have gotten together with a friend’s mother (Eeeeeewwww! That is just wrong!).

• 2/3s say the media and celebrities have an effect; it is “officially less socially awkward” to date an older woman thanks to the media’s coverage of cougars.

• The biggest turn-on for the younger men is maturity (as opposed, I guess to possibly bigger bank accounts?).

• 19 percent have been “cougared” by an older boss or co-worker.

• Only 8 percent said they were looking for a sugar mama. And …

• 80 percent said they wouldn’t necessarily object if their own mothers became cougars.

(Okay, those last two …. let’s just say, I’m not really buying those two.)

—  admin

Your dose of The Lady Bunny

The Lady Bunny was supposed to be at the XLV Party before it was canceled, and frankly, we were all set to see the drag diva spin again. Then nothing.

But we got our fix, anyway. Here’s a little parody song from Buynny skewering Sarah Palin that brought a smile to my face this morning. Even digital Bunny is better than none.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

What’s Brewing: Michele Bachmann; George Michael; homophobic Arkansas grocery store

Your weekday morning blend from Instant Tea:

1. Whatever GOP Congresswoman Michele Bachmann said during her tea party response to the State of the Union was completely overshadowed by the fact that she was looking at the wrong camera the entire time, as well as her gross mispronunciation of Iwo Jima, which she referred to as “Ewa Jamma.” At this point, can you imagine anything more entertaining (and tragic) than a Sarah Palin-Bachmann ticket in 2012?

2. The Australian press is obsessed with George Michael’s use — or non-use — of gay hookup apps. The Daily Telegraph reports — under the headline “George Michael on the prowl for man action in Australia” — that the pop singer has switched from Grindr to Scruff. However, Perth Now reports that the Scruff profile (right) appearing to be Michael is actually the work of an impostor. With this kind of media attention paid to his app usage, can you really blame Michael for getting wasted? Next time Michael is in Dallas, we’ve assigned DV staffer Rich Lopez to cruise Scruff 24/7 in search of him — which won’t be much of a change for Lopez.

3. Harps grocery store in Mountain Home, Ark., is obscuring the cover of US Weekly because it contains a photo of gay parents (Elton John, his partner and their baby), according to a Twitter user who posted the pic below. Gay bloggers who’ve picked up the story list the number for Harps as 870-425-6556. If you decide to call, tell them to check this study, which showed that gay parenting is quite common in places like Arkansas.

—  John Wright

Poll: Gov. Perry, President Obama tied in Texas

Gov. Rick Perry

If Texas Republican Gov. Rick Perry runs for president, he may have a hard time winning his own state.

A hypothetical matchup between Perry and President Barack Obama shows them tied in Texas, with each capturing 45 percent of the would-be vote, according to a survey conducted earlier this month by Public Policy Polling.

Perry faired the worst of several Republicans who were pitted against Obama in hypothetical matchups, according to the Texas Tribune:

Former Alaska Gov. and 2008 GOP vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin would beat Obama in Texas by just a single point, 47 percent to 46 percent. Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney leads Obama in Texas 49 to 42, while former U.S. House Speaker Newt Gingrich leads the presdient 48 to 43. The Republican who fares best against Obama in Texas is former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, who trounces him 55 to 39.

In other polling news, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney easily won the first presidential straw ballot of the 2012 cycle, capturing 35 percent of the vote among New Hampshire Republicans. Texas Congressman Ron Paul finished second with 11 percent, followed by former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty with 8 percent and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin with 7 percent. Gov. Perry was not included in the poll.


—  John Wright

What’s Brewing: Lance Lundsten, State of the Union, Lady Bunny’s ‘Ballad of Sarah Palin’

Your weekday morning blend from Instant Tea:

1. Gay Minnesota teen Lance Lundsten may very well have taken his own life after all. The medical examiner in the case said Wednesday that Lundsten did not die from an enlarged heart as his father claims. Instead, a finding that Lundsten had an enlarged heart was secondary to his unknown cause of his death. Lundsten has been widely reported to have committed suicide in response to anti-gay bullying at school. However, his official cause of death won’t be known until toxicology results are complete, which could take several weeks.

2. LGBT advocates are calling for President Barack Obama to come out in support of marriage equality in Tuesday’s State of the Union address: “We have wanted him to lead on this issue. He has talked about … experiencing some evolution, and we’d like to say, ‘Evolve now!’”

3. Lady Bunny releases “The Ballad of Sarah Palin.” (video above)

—  John Wright

What’s Brewing: Sarah Palin; Ron Natinsky; high court rejects challenge to D.C. gay marriage law

1. Sarah Palin is, not surprisingly, totally unapologetic (video above). In her first interview since the Tucson shooting (if you call an appearance on Fox News an interview), Palin says she’s been falsely accused of being an accessory to murder (her words, not ours). But Palin says she’s not going to let that lie live. No sir, she’s not going to sit down or shut up. In fact, the only reason the map with the rifle crosshairs was removed from her PAC’s website after the shooting is that some graphic artist decided on his own to take it down. But Palin’s not really even sure whether it’s been taken down or not. Besides, everyone uses those maps, just like everyone knows what “blood libel” means, you stupid media people. You probably think she should just say the two words that any decent human being would say after a tragedy like this — “I’m sorry.” Silly you.

2. District 12 Dallas City Councilman Ron Natinsky confirmed that he plans to run for mayor. Although he represents a conservative district in far North Dallas, Natinsky has been fairly supportive of the LGBT community, and he’s been endorsed in the past by the Dallas Gay and Lesbian Alliance.

3. BREAKING: The U.S. Supreme Court has rejected an appeal by a group seeking to overturn same-sex marriage in Washington, D.C.

—  John Wright