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A little over a week ago, Gawker’s Bryan Moylan put up a post calling out Luke Evans and his PR team for straight-washing him when he had publicly identified as a big ‘ole mo in promotion of projects past. Evans had identified as a gay man to the Advocate, has discussed his substantial gay porn collection with GayDarNation, among having made other honest proclamations of his homosexuality. Recently, however, now that Evans is set to appear in several upcoming high-budget action flicks, his Wikipedia page has undergone a little…rearticulation. At the moment it reads under the personal life column:
The disturbing aspect of this observation is that it is precisely the 12-step program of recovery that many ex-gay groups exploit in their mission to convince us queers that our “deviant proclivities” are no different from an addiction from which we can recover if only we become willing. It’s disturbing to me both as a queer person and as a 12-stepper, since this abuse of the 12 steps and 12 traditions serves to delegitimize two very integral parts of my life. The one is simply a fact of my life and identity that runs to the very core of my self and soul, my queerness. The other is a system which has literally saved my life and brought me from insanity to sanity in more ways than even I can know. If I must be honest (which I must… it is a part of recovery) if I think about it, it seems that there is very little objective factual evidence to show that there really is a difference between same-sex attraction and addiction. If I think about an addict in recovery in comparison with a person struggling to overcome same-sex attraction, they look very similar. Each one struggles each day with an urge, a desire, something that is likely part of their DNA. Each is susceptible to relapse at any moment, each is likely faced every day with the feeling that they would be happier if they just let go and gave in to the urge, fell off the wagon, and each makes a choice to “act as if” they believe that they are better off not giving in to the addiction, the attraction, until they do believe it, and it becomes true for them. Both surrender their power over this urge to a Higher Power to which they pray to have it removed from them. On the one side, if you buy into 12-step, this could make same-sex attraction look like something that can be overcome. On the other side, if you would condemn the ex-gay movement, it makes 12-step look like brainwashing. How can a thinking queer addict in recovery resolve this quandary?
Toronto electrogoth band Austra seems to thrive on contradictions. Despite being named after the Latvian goddess of light, they cast themselves and their music in the darkest shades of night. At turns ominous and foreboding, their songs can also be seductive and even inviting, as evidenced by their titanic singles “Beat and the Pulse” and “Lose It.” And though her voice is gargantuan and more than a little intimidating, on stage as well as on debut record Feel It Break, front woman and bandleader Katie Stelmanis is soft-spoken and maybe a little reserved in person. She demonstrated this demure demeanor when speaking to The New Gay before taking the stage to open for Cold Cave at Voyeur Nightclub in Philly.
Facing the most daunting political and economic climate in years, AIDS activists have relaunched efforts to follow presidential candidates on the campaign trail, challenging them to commit to funding the fight against global AIDS.
The tactic, called birddogging, has been used for years by activists to get politicians to go on record saying they’ll ramp up AIDS funding. Sometimes, activists merely attend a town hall, step up to the mic, and ask a candidate for a pledge. Other times, participants get more aggressive, interrupting speeches, waving signs and participating in acts of civil disobedience.
For some reason pundits and policymakers haven’t grasped the reality that debt ceiling debates and promises of job creation won’t spur young people (generations Y, Z, etc.) to political action.
My generation was born in the era of Bush, Clinton and Bush – more importantly in the time of the rapid growth of televised news, a method of ‘learning about the world’ that is so clearly and laughably dogmatic to anyone under the age of 40. Our political environment is not real to us, we have not experienced in a direct way how changes in Washington affect our lives.
One element to this is a rote learning process that has affected every generation: Why should 21 year olds give up late night binge drinking to organize to ‘Save Medicare’?
Did you watch the GOP debate the other night? I didn’t either.
However, I did catch some interesting tweets in my news feed suggesting well-known homophobe Rick Santorum was for the rights of gays, at least those gays in Iran.
Hey, that’s great if Santorum really cares about people he will never be able to hurt through legislation or venomous rhetoric, but don’t let the man behind the curtain fool you. If you do it could get pretty messy.
“A friend of mine has a girlfriend and a boyfriend,” Erick adds with his eyes still closed. “I wouldn’t mind that arrangement – except the girlfriend would have to be a boyfriend.”
Chris chuckles. “So you want two boyfriends?”
“Actually, I wouldn’t mind three.”
“Three?” Chris asks.
Erick sits up. “Yes, three — one to meet the physical needs, one to meet the social needs and one to meet the emotional needs,” he explains before returning to his stretched out position with his head in Chris lap and his eyes closed.
As a Southern Baptist, I was naturally led to believe that through God and prayer all things are possible. The power of prayer was indisputable, and great things could be achieved by simply dropping to your knees, closing your eyes and begging ( sometimes the jokes just write themselves.) I never took prayer all that lightly. After all, asking God for some sort of favor is serious business. To request something so frivolous as a nice car or a cute boyfriend would be insulting. I would always start out by thanking God for all that he had done for me. I didn’t want to seem unappreciative. And, I really only remember praying for two things: to not be gay, and to not be harassed at school. These weren’t just a couple of requests made in passing; these were heartfelt, earnest pleas. I didn’t want to be gay, under any circumstances, and I wanted to “fit in” with my peers – not to be popular per se, just to be accepted. Of course, neither of these prayers was ever answered. I don’t think they were even on the table for consideration.
My favorite album of the summer, by the 1000 miles it takes me to get from my apartment in East Harlem to brunch downtown.
It wasn’t just my immediate love for “East Harlem”, the first single from the album, that made me humping the leg of lead-up to this release, though with that song’s beautiful structure, glorious layers, and the ever-so-heartrending lyrical reach in the soar of Zach Condon’s croon. It was the fact that we hadn’t heard an official release from the band since 2007 (and no, I’m not counting the relative side-projects of the March of the Zapotec/Holland release – so sue me).
Basically gone are the Balkan/Eastern European influences – or, rather, they have been so completely subsumed by the sheer strength of original songcraft, a band completely at ease with each other as a working unit, and an embrace of slow-churning earworms that I’ll be lucky to get out of my head by October.