TLC pulls ’19 Kids and Counting’ … at least for now

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Josh Dugger

TMZ is reporting that TLC has yanked the reality series “19 Kids and Counting” from its lineup after the Dugger family — which is busy overpopulating the world with bigots — acknowledged this week that one of the 19 kids, Josh Dugger, really did molest underage girls. But, “Sources familiar with the situation tell TMZ, the fate of the show is uncertain, but there’s now so much heat in the wake of Josh Duggar’s molestation confession … the network had to make the decision.”

TLC officials released this statement to The Huffington Post today: “Effective immediately, TLC has pulled all episodes of 19 Kids and Counting currently from the air. We are deeply saddened and troubled by this heartbreaking situation, and our thoughts and prayers are with the family and victims at this difficult time.”

But HuffPo also notes that the TLC website continues to list the show as airing on June 1.

Josh Dugger admitted his guilt after InTouch magazine published a story Thursday, May 21, about police records it obtained from Springdale, Ark., hidden since 2006, that show Josh Duggar confessed to his father, Jim Bob Duggar, who then waited more than a year before telling police what his son did. Reports indicate Josh Dugger molested five girls who lived in the Dugger family home in 2002 and 2003.

Following the InTouch report Thursday, Josh Dugger resigned from his job with the ultra-right-wing Family Research Council. He then apologized in a post to the Dugger family Facebook page, saying, “Twelve years ago, as a young teenager, I acted inexcusably for which I am extremely sorry and deeply regret. … We spoke with the authorities where I confessed my wrongdoing, and my parents arranged for me and those affected by my actions to receive counseling. I understood that if I continued down this wrong road that I would end up ruining my life.”

Back when he first got caught, instead of contacting police, Josh’s mommy and daddy made him spend a couple of months in a “Christian rehabilitation program” in Little Rock.

The Dugger family is famous for its anti-gay rhetoric and right-wing political efforts, including mom Michelle’s robo-calls pushing for passage of transphobic legislation in Arkansas last August, the family’s support of right-wing politicians like Rick Santorum and Sam Brownback and referring to abortion as “an American Holocaust.” Josh, whose now-former employer the Family Research Council has been classified as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, has himself defended Chick-Fil-A for its anti-gay policies, and “Duck Dynasty” patriarch Phil Robertson for his anti-gay statements. He has claimed that LGBT people are dangerous to children, and last November led an anti-gay rally in Little Rock.

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“Mama June” Shannon

While TLC hasn’t said that it is actually cancelling “19 Kids,” a former TLC reality star is threatening the network with a lawsuit if the show isn’t canned, again according to TMZ.

“Mama June” Shannon said her show, “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo,” cancelled last October after TMZ published reports that she was dating a convicted child molester and thus putting her children at risk. Mama June, who denied those reports, said today that she would sue TLC if the network doesn’t cancel “19 Kids” after Josh Dugger’s admission.

Mama June said that the cancellation of “Honey Boo Boo” cost her hundreds of thousands of dollars, and that her show was cancelled even though she never molested anyone and the sex offender she was supposedly dating never appeared on the show. Josh Dugger, on the other hand, is a central character in “19 Kids” and he admitted molesting children.

—  Tammye Nash

CONCERT REVIEW: NKOTB

image3Is it fair to continue calling pop group New Kids on the Block a boy band? At an average age of 44, the guys are actually closer to AARP eligibility than boyhood. Yet, judging by the crowd’s high-pitched squeals and thunderous applause at American Airlines Center Thursday night — a concert broadcast live on Yahoo! Screen — NKOTB may remain forever young.

The group’s current tour, with supporting acts Nelly and TLC, was presented as a boxing match of sorts, complete with a sign-carrying ring girl and a rectangular open “ring” in the center of the arena’s floor. While the stage’s upfront placement brought artists and audience closer, it also meant that, as often as not, the audience was viewing performers’ backsides.

Round One. Rapper Nelly — a man whose Hulk-like arms defy images that his stage name might evoke in gay circles — opened the show. He was joined by a two-man crew and a bevy of bootylicious dancers as he performed biggest his including “Ride Wit Me” and “Hot in Herre.”

image4Round Two. Dressed in iridescent overalls, TLC (Tionne “T-Boz” Watkins and Rozonda “Chilli” Thomas) provided an R&B counterpoint to Nelly’s rap-heavy set. Highlights included a performance “Red Light Special” during which a lucky audience member (or, more likely, an audience plant) was escorted on stage for a sultry lap dance. The duo remembered late band mate Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes during a performance of “Waterfalls,” asking the audience to raise their phone lights in the air. And a performance of their timeless man-shaming classic “No Scrubs” brought the crowd to its feet.

Round Three. Collectively known as NKOTB, headliners Jordan Knight, Joey McIntyre, Donnie Wahlberg, Danny Wood and openly gay member Jonathan Knight took center stage in hooded boxing robes as a recorded ring announcer introduced them one-by-one. The group gave a visually stunning performance that included hydraulic stage stunts, pyrotechnics and an abundance of colorful confetti. The quintet performed a mix of pop songs and ballads from their repertoire including crowd-pleasers “Step By Step” and “Hanging Tough.” They also asked the audience to join them in singing “Happy Birthday” to Wood who celebrated his 46th birthday.

The concert was not short on eye candy, either. Quick-change cameras in the dressing rooms caught the boys in their underwear during a costume change, and McIntyre, the group’s youngest member, showed of his abs during a chest-baring solo.

Overall, the feel-good evening felt much like a college homecoming or a high school class reunion. And, even though the New Kids on the Block may no longer grace the pages of teen magazines, they proved that they still have the right stuff to draw a crowd.

Watch Yahoo!’s 24-hour rebroadcast of the May 14 event here.

— Scott Huffman

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Worst reality TV show ever

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There are only two things you need to know about this new TV show on TLC, which airs tonight at 8 p.m.:

1. The picture above.

2. The title: The Man with the 132 lb. Scrotum.

Honey Boo-Boo, we never thought you’d be the classiest thing on TLC. We were wrong.

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

Well that takes the cake: “Drag Race’s” Carmen Carrera receives apology from TLC’s “Cake Boss”

Carmen Carrera, the self-identified trans woman who appeared on Season 3 of RuPaul’s Drag Race, got a bit of a shock on Monday night. She made a guest appearance on the TLC show Cake Boss, where she apparently thought she would be portrayed as a role model for trans youth. Instead, it turned out to be a prank between the eponymous cake boss, Buddy Valastro, and his cousin Anthony. Anthony hit on Carmen in a bar, only to be told later — incorrectly, of course — that “that was a man!”

Carrera was outraged and complained — not the least of her complaints was that Anthony referred to her as “it.”

—  Arnold Wayne Jones

‘Florida Family Association’ founder moves from anti-gay campaigns to anti-Muslim efforts

I don’t watch reality shows, for the most part, and I haven’t watched The Learning Channel‘s new reality offering called All-American Muslim. From what I understand, after the first couple of episodes, the show is not getting good reviews.

David Caton of the Florida Family Association

But it is getting a lot of attention, thanks in large part to the Florida Family Association’s campaign to get advertisers to pull existing ads and not agree to advertise on the show in the future. Of course, FFA’s campaign has nothing to do with the quality of the program, and everything to do with David Caton‘s anti-Muslim bigotry.

Caton, who is executive director — and the only staff member — for FFA, claims All-American Muslim is “propaganda clearly designed to counter legitimate and present-day concerns about many Muslims who are advancing Islamic fundamentalism and Sharia law.  The show profiles only Muslims that appear to be ordinary folks while excluding many Islamic believers whose agenda poses a clear and present danger to liberties and traditional values that the majority of Americans cherish.”

TLC’s website for All-American Muslim explains that the show takes a look at life in Dearborn, Michigan — home to the largest mosque in the United States — through the lens of five Muslim American families.” One of the men on the show, Mike Jaafar, is a deputy chief sheriff, something Caton apparently takes great exception to. On the FFA website, Caton says, “One of the most troubling scenes occurred at the introduction of the program when a Muslim police officer stated ‘I really am American.  No ifs and or buts about it.’”

Personally, I don’t see anything particularly troubling about a deputy chief sheriff making such a declaration, but Caton says Jaafar’s statement is “damage control for the Dearborn Police who have arrested numerous Christians including several former Muslims for peacefully preaching Christianity.”

Anyway, Caton claims FFA’s efforts have convinced Lowe’s and Kayak.com to pull their advertising from the TLC program. I don’t know about Lowe’s, but Robert Birge, chief marketing officer for Kayak.com, said his company’s decision regarding advertising on the program had nothing to do with Caton and the FFA; he said the company would no longer advertise on the program because All-American Muslim “sucked.” He also said TLC had misled his company about the content of the program, and that Kayak.com had not actually pulled advertising but instead had decided not to renew advertising on the program, according to this report by Reuters.

So by now you may be wondering why an LGBT news site is reporting on a boycott of a show about Muslims. I mean, the Islamic faith is not known for its progressive stance on LGBT issues.

The reason, actually, is simple: Bigotry is bigotry is bigotry. The right-winger that is so up in arms about a TV program possibly showing Muslim people in a positive light is the same right-winger who made a name for himself fighting LGBT rights.

—  admin