New York Pride Days 1-2: Alan Cumming, Neil Patrick Harris, synchronized swimming

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Free people from all over the world descended on New York City for the first-ever WorldPride celebration to be held in the U.S. marking the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots.

Here’s how our 30-something New York-based writer John Russell survived the magic and mayhem.

Wednesday, June 26


6:45pm:
Press check-in for the WorldPride Opening Ceremony at Barclays Center goes pretty smoothly, though there’s no place on the “Rainbow carpet” for me. Which is fine because the battery on my phone is about to die, so I wouldn’t be able to record any interviews anyway.

The crowd is extremely enthusiastic, all decked out in rainbow paraphernalia and glitter. It’s a different sort of crowd than the circuit queens and muscle pigs you see at the big parties. It’s probably a lot of out-of-towners and activists and students, earnest, nerdy types. I have to check my cynicism. It is a privilege, I remind myself, to feel jaded about such earnest displays of enthusiasm for Pride.

I find my seat in what I guess most people would call the nosebleed section, but more accurately should be called the vertigo-inducing section, as seats are positioned an almost a vertical incline. I can just see myself trying to squeeze past others in my row, stumbling and falling onto the people below.

Onstage, Cyndi Lauper emerges from a giant disco glittering globe singing “True Colors” with a squad of drag queens, lead by Lady Bunny, as her backup dancers. Then House of Labeija performs, and Billy Porter takes the stage after. “The category is EGOT,” he says by way of announcing welcoming Whoopi Goldberg to the stage. She delivers a rousing speech about Pride. “Everyone should know, this is how the first U.S. WorldPride does it!”

There’s a video montage, and then Sara Ramirez sings “Over the Rainbow.” I leave during New York City Council speaker Corey Johnson’s speech to try to make it home in time to catch the first night of the Democratic primary debate.

Thursday, June 27
5pm:
My friend Lorenzo invites me to a pool party at the Williamsburg Hotel. I’m already planning to go to the Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association party at 7pm, but I can make it from FiDi to Williamsburg by 9pm-ish.

There are just too many parties, too many events and launches and pop-ups and brand activations this week. Here’s just a sampling from my inbox currently:

INVITE: Kiesza’s Pride Pop-Ups
(Appearances at Robyn fan party This Party is Killing Me at Brooklyn Bowl and Hot Rabbit at Lot 45)

5 Safety Tips from Doctors Ahead of Pride Parade 2019
(Hydrate, mind your accessories don’t get caught on anyone’s piercings.)

Check out new World Pride Dance anthem “Universal Love” by SHYRA SANCHEZ and TRAIG

How to Celebrate Pride WITHOUT LEAVING YOUR HOUSE: The Feels

Invite: WorldPride NYC X SKYY VODKA
“Following up on the invitation to join SKYY Vodka this Sunday during the WorldPride NYC Parade on Sunday, June 30th!”

You’re Invited: Brunch Out with Trevor in partnership with The Trevor Project
“I wanted to reach out on behalf of Kimpton Hotel Eventi as in partnership with The Trevor Project, we are hosting an exciting Brunch Out with Trevor event this Saturday, June 29th, from 12-3 p.m. with RuPaul’s Drag Race superstar Willam as our key performer and special guest.”

John! Perfect for PRIDE month, New Single From Songland Contestant / Acclaimed Songwriter / Solo Artist TYLER JAMES BELLINGER

NYC Pride 2019 – Celebrate with EFFEN Vodka’s New Bottle!
“For every limited-edition Pride bottle made, EFFEN had donated $1 to Outfest.”

Hotel Manapany Launches New Pride Package
Package is being offered for stays through December 21, 2019, and 10% of the revenue from each package will be donated to Gay Men’s Health Crisis.”

Obviously, it’s not possible for one person to do all of it. I’m already thinking about canceling the “mini-mani” I booked at Homoco’s pop-up show tomorrow night…

Alan Cumming poses with the Team New York Aquatics at Deryck Todd’s Pride Event at The Williamsburg Hotel on June 27 in Brooklyn, NY.

9pm: Bath and Body at the Williamsburg Hotel. Lorenzo and I say hi to the party’s promoter, Deryck Todd, and then take the tiny elevator to the hotel’s roof. There are only a couple of gays in the pool, but it’s early still. Alan Cumming is hosting and I overhear some boys who are super excited about him. Neil Patrick Harris is here too, and he takes off his shirt.

I run into a couple fellow former editors of Next Magazine and it’s like a little reunion. They’re going to the WE! party at the Javits Center on Saturday night where Bette Midler is expected to make an appearance. My friend who works for Bloomberg is excited to see the sunrise through the big glass ceiling, which sounds really cool but also like a nightmare to me.

I get an alert my phone about Kamal and Biden clashing at the second Democratic primary debate, and the conversation turns to the candidates. Most of us seem to be all about Warren. No one mentions Mayor Pete.

Later, there’s synchronized swimming by Team NY Aquatics. Everyone crowds around the edge of the pool so it’s impossible to see what’s happening. “We’ll watch it later on someone’s Insta story,” Lorenzo says. That’s basically how I felt about the Opening Ceremony last night.


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What Does a Crooked Election Look Like?

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Michael_Novakhov
shared this story
from Scientific American Content: Global.

For voters around the world, including the millions of Americans who will cast ballots in the midterms up to and on November 6, an election is democracy in action—an opportunity to make their voices heard, have a say in how their government is run and, if necessary, throw the bums out. It is a thoroughly political exercise, or so it would seem.

But to Peter Klimek, who works in the emerging field of electoral forensics, an election is something else as well. “Basically it is a huge, standardized social experiment,” he says. “What you are doing is taking the population of a country and segmenting it into different subpopulations—the eligible voters in their separate polling stations. Then you are having each one of them answer the same questions.”

And because huge experiments like elections follow the law of large numbers,  a bedrock principle of probability, those answers from the voting data should show “certain statistical regularities,” says Klimek, who studies complex systems at Medical University of Vienna. When they do not, when there are instead statistical anomalies, that other F–word—fraud—may be the reason.

That appears to be the case with the results of Turkey’s 2017 constitutional referendum and its 2018 presidential election, which Klimek and colleagues analyze in a paper published earlier this month in PLOS ONE. Using their own set of statistical tools, the researchers identified multiple irregularities in both elections that they attribute to systematic ballot stuffing (submission of multiple ballots per person during the election) and voter rigging (defined as coercion or intimidation of voters). In the case of the constitutional referendum they wrote, “removing such ballot-stuffing characteristic anomalies from the data would tip the overall balance from a majority of ‘No’ to a majority of ‘Yes’ votes.” Klimek says, “We’ve showed that you can develop a unique tool set that allows you not only to screen a data set for potential signs of fraud but also to identify the specific methods used.” One of the most important features of such forensic tool kits (others in the field have created their own) is their portability. They can be used to analyze elections around the world, and a physical presence is not necessary. All that’s required is the voting data, ideally at the level of individual polling stations, which can usually be downloaded from official government Web sites.

There is clearly a need. A 2010 analysis of data from elections conducted in more than 170 countries between 1978 and 2004, published on the Social Science Research Network, found signs of some cheating in 61 percent of the countries, and major problems in 27 percent of them. Since the early 2000s various research groups, including Klimek’s, have used forensic tools to examine elections in multiple countries including Venezuela, Kenya, Cambodia, South Africa, Bangladesh and Argentina.

Although the new paper from Klimek’s group includes a disclaimer that it is “by no means direct proof of electoral fraud,” it makes a strong case the Turkish elections were marred by malpractice. And, the authors wrote, the patterns of irregularities in the two elections, held 14 months apart, were barely distinguishable from each other. “We found exactly the same malpractices in exactly the same districts in 2018 as we did the year before,” Klimek says. Making that kind of connection is key to preventing fraud in future elections, he adds. “If you want to get some policy-relevant actions out of this kind of research, you need to be able to tell what happened with which likelihood in which geographical area,” he notes.

The researchers worked with data from the official Web site of the Turkish election commission. To detect signs of ballot stuffing, they used the number of voters, the number of valid ballots cast (turnout) and the total votes tallied by the winners (‘Yes’ in 2017’s referendum and for Pres. Recep Tayyip Erdogan in 2018) to create an “election fingerprint” for each of the polling stations they analyzed.

For the 2017 referendum, they crunched the numbers from 153,701 stations, grouped in 28,447 neighborhoods. For the 2018 election, they looked at 168,377 stations in 44,796 neighborhoods. When the data was plotted in two dimensions and compared with standardized fingerprints from trustworthy elections with normal distributions, Klemik’s team found “highly significant statistical support” for ballot stuffing in 11 percent of the polling stations they analyzed. (Ballot stuffing inflates both turnout and the percentage of winning votes.)

Election fingerprint analysis also turned up evidence of possible voter rigging at small, rural polling stations—which are less likely to be monitored by poll observers than large urban stations are, and where it is easier to identify the political leanings of individual voters. “That makes it much easier to conduct certain malpractices,” Klimek says, such as intimidating voters with an excessive police or military presence.

Walter Mebane, a professor of political science and statistics at the University of Michigan and co-author of a 2017 guide to election forensics for the U.S. Agency for International Development, urges caution when attributing election anomalies to possible fraud. “The problem is that many of the patterns that look irregular according to many statistical methods can be produced by strategic behavior, or normal politics,” he says. “You can tell that the pattern was manipulated or looks unusual, but you can’t tell why.”

Figuring out the “why” is the next big challenge, according to Mebane, a pioneer of the field. “Politics is weird, to use a technical term. All kinds of bizarre things can happen. I think the limit of election forensics, and this is the frontier of my research right now, is to try to see how well we can discriminate frauds from human behavior.”

An even more basic challenge faces researchers who want to use forensic tool kits to analyze U.S. elections—getting the data. “The way elections take place and are administered in the U.S. is not really up to the quality standards in other countries,” says Klimek, who tried and failed to apply some of his methods to the 2008 election. “The data quality was not good enough.” In most states, access to voter registration data is restricted mainly to the political parties, the candidates and some companies that work with them, Mebane says. 

After a 2016 presidential election marred by allegations of foreign meddling, the midterm contest looms amid concerns about voter suppression in Georgia and other states as well as unsubstantiated claims of widespread voter fraud by undocumented aliens. The most unexpected takeaway from electoral forensics may be that it is easier to analyze Russian elections than those in the U.S. “It’s really not much work to do this kind of analysis once you’ve got the data,” Klimek says. “With the algorithms we are talking about, it can be done in a couple of hours.”


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These 8 same-sex marriages are the definition of power couples

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As we conclude our celebration the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall uprising, 2019 marks another milestone for the community: it’s been fifteen years since Massachusetts became the first United States jurisdiction to license and recognize same-sex marriages.

While it took another decade for the unions to be recognized at the federal level, it’s worth looking back at our achievements.

In honor of marriage equality, take some time to read about ten of our favorite power couples.

1. Sir Elton John and David Furnish

Elton John and David Furish
Elton’s filmmaker husband has produced several films including, fittingly, Rocket Man. The power couple spent 12 years together before getting married in 2014.

2. Matt Bomer and Simon Halls

Simon Halls and Matt Bomer
The American Horror Story hunk revealed that he and his superstar publicist husband – who counts Tom Ford and Ryan Murphy as clients – that the pair married in 2011. They have three sons.

3. Neil Patrick Harris and David Burtka

Neil Patrick Harris and David Burtka
The Emmy-winning star and his chef husband spent ten years together before getting married in 2014. They had twins via surrogacy in 2010.

4. Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi

Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi
The definitive lesbian power couple married in 2008 after dating for four years.

5. RuPaul Charles and Georges LeBar

RuPaul Charles and Georges LeBar
The drag superstar met his future hubby on the dancefloor of NYC’s iconic Limelight club in 1994. “Most of the time, he’s on the ranch in Wyoming. He has a 60,000-acre ranch—it’s in two states, it’s in South Dakota, too,” RuPaul said on Hollywood Today Live. “When I go there, I dress up in Western wear and nobody cares.”

6. Melissa Etheridge and Linda Wallem

Melissa Etheridge and Linda Wallem
The duo fell for each other while the longtime friends were taking care of the rocker’s four kids. “We were like a married couple without the benefits, so why not have the benefits!?,” Etheridge said in an interview.

7. George and Brad Takei


The couple has been married for over a decade. In fact, they were the first same-sex couple to apply for a marriage license in West Hollywood.

8. Dan Savage and Terry Miller

The sex columnist and his Insta-model hubby have been married twice: first in Vancouver, and again in Washington state after the 2012 legalization of gay marriage.

9. Tom Ford and Richard Buckley


The two met when Ford was 25 years old and when Buckley, then a magazine editor, was 38. They married in 2014.


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mikenov on Twitter: #NEWS #Russian #propaganda may really have #helped #Trump: “…the weeks when #RussianTrolls were accumulating likes and retweets on #Twitter, that activity reliably foreshadowed gains for #Trump in the #opinionpolls,” wrote #DamianRuck, in an article…” trumpandtrumpism.com/mike-novas-sha… pic.twitter.com/FHKUJ0Ldvk

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#NEWS
#Russian #propaganda may really have #helped #Trump:
“…the weeks when #RussianTrolls were accumulating likes and retweets on #Twitter, that activity reliably foreshadowed gains for #Trump in the
#opinionpolls,” wrote #DamianRuck, in an article…”
trumpandtrumpism.com/mike-novas-sha… pic.twitter.com/FHKUJ0Ldvk



Posted by

mikenov
on Monday, July 1st, 2019 9:20pm

mikenov on Twitter


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“Russian Intelligence services and international organized crime and terrorism” – Google News: The 10 Most Urgent Cases of Journalists Under Threat and Facing Injustice – Fortune

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The 10 Most Urgent Cases of Journalists Under Threat and Facing Injustice  Fortune

Every month, the One Free Press Coalition ranks the most urgent press freedom cases.

“Russian Intelligence services and international organized crime and terrorism” – Google News


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The 15 best players left in NBA free agency, ranked

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Most of the big names were off the board early, but there’s quality depth left to be signed.

The opening eight hours of free agency answered most of the questions we had about the future of the NBA. Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant became Nets, Jimmy Butler was traded to the Heat, Tobias Harris stayed with the Sixers, Al Horford joined him there, and D’Angelo Russell was moved to the Warriors. Still, there’s talent left to grab.

Kawhi Leonard is the biggest name left on the board, and DeMarcus Cousins is the lone other All-Star, bur rotation players are still looking for homes.

Here are the best free agents left.

Last update: 3:12 p.m. ET

1. Kawhi Leonard

Leonard’s the big one, with the Raptors, Lakers and Clippers vying for his talents. His decision is likely to change the landscape of the league. Will L.A. will have a true superteam, or will every contender is as talented at the top as the next.

2. DeMarcus Cousins

With the Russell trade, the routes for Cousins to return to the Warriors are slim. But what’s the market for a center who has torn his Achilles and quad in consecutive years? With money running slim for most teams who had cap space, Cousins might have to sign for a discount again.

3. Danny Green

Green started for the champion Raptors because he does two things: shoot threes and defend. He should command a similar role no matter where he goes, though he’ll reportedly hold out on his decision until Leonard makes one.

4. Kevon Looney

Looney came on strong for a Warriors team that lacked depth last season. A versatile defender, Looney plays a role sought by every team looking to make the playoffs. He doesn’t do much on offense, but he’s a star in his one role.

5. Marcus Morris

Morris is coming off one of his best seasons on a clunky Celtics team. He scored 14 points with six rebounds on 37 percent three-point shooting. He’s one of the best bench scorers available at the very least, and contenders should seek him out.

6. JaMychal Green

A 6’9 big man who can shoot, Green is a very good role player for a team looking to compete. He shot 41 percent from three on three tries per night last year in L.A. and has shot 37 percent for his career.

7. Delon Wright (restricted)

Wright showed he can be productive in a bigger role with the Grizzlies in 26 games last season. The 27-year-old guard scored 14 points per game with six assists — albeit on just 43 percent shooting. But the 6’5 PG with a 6’6 reach is a solid defender, too. The Grizzlies can match any deal he signs.

8. Kelly Oubre (restricted)

The 23-year-old forward is still a work in progress, but he could become an excellent role player or even lower-level starter. He scored 17 points per game on 45 percent shooting in 40 games with Phoenix last year. The Suns can match any offer Oubre signs.

9. Willie Cauley-Stein

Cauley-Stein averaged 12 points and eight rebounds for a productive Kings team last year. He defends the paint well too, and should make for a quality backup big.

10. Rondae Hollis-Jefferson

Hollis-Jefferson’s place in the league will remain unclear until he figures out how to shoot the ball better, but he’s a great defender, and that should be enough for spot minutes. With Brooklyn signing DeAndre Jordan, Durant and Irving, it’s unlikely they retain RHJ.

11. Jabari Parker

The former No. 2 pick has had two ACL injuries and continues to struggle on defense, but can play a scorer’s role somewhere. He averaged 15 points on 49 percent shooting last year with the Bulls and Wizards.

12. Avery Bradley

Bradley hit a wall after the 2018 season, only scoring 10 points per game last season on 35 percent three-point shooting and worsening on the defensive end. He’s only 28, though. Could a change of scenery help?

13. Emmanuel Mudiay

Mudiay hasn’t been great in his first four seasons in the league, but he’s also just 23 years old. He scored 15 points on 45 percent shooting last year.

14. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope

He shot 35 percent from three last year, which is fine. He has also played 74 games or more in all six seasons. He’s a fine bench player.

15. Rajon Rondo

He isn’t what he once was, but someone will take a veteran with championship experience — maybe even the Lakers!. He averaged nine points, eight assists and five rebounds last year.

Everyone else

In no particular order:

  • Carmelo Anthony
  • Jeff Green
  • Wesley Matthews
  • Alec Burks
  • Justin Holiday
  • Tyus Jones (R)
  • Jared Dudley
  • Markieff Morris
  • James Ennis
  • Joakim Noah
  • Kenneth Faried
  • Jordan Bell (R)
  • T.J. McConnell
  • Khem Birch (R)
  • Ivica Zubac (R)
  • Isaiah Thomas
  • Boban Marjanovic
  • Jeremy Lin
  • Frank Kaminsky
  • Jonas Jerebko
  • Anthony Tolliver
  • Dorian Finney-Smith (R)
  • Jake Layman (R)
  • Nene
  • Rodney McGruder (R)
  • Trey Lyles (R)
  • Justin Anderson
  • Noah Vonleh
  • Corey Brewer
  • Ian Clark
  • Daniel Theis (R)
  • Iman Shumpert
  • Devin Harris
  • Quinn Cook (R)
  • Andrew Bogut
  • Alex Caruso (R)
  • Luol Deng
  • Shelvin Mack
  • Amir Johnson
  • Patrick McCaw (R)
  • Jose Calderon
  • Darius Miller
  • Furkan Korkmaz
  • Kosta Koufos
  • Pau Gasol
  • Raymond Felton
  • Jerryd Bayless
  • Glenn Robinson III
  • Kyle O’Quinn
  • Wilson Chandler
  • Dragan Bender
  • Dante Cunningham
  • Marquese Chriss
  • Cheick Diallo
  • Greg Monroe
  • Jamal Crawford
  • Jodie Meeks
  • Lance Stephenson
  • Thabo Sefolosha
  • Sam Dekker
  • Wayne Selden
  • Zaza Pachulia
  • Nik Stauskas
  • Jerian Grant
  • Tim Frazier
  • Cameron Payne
  • Quincy Pondexter
  • Chasson Randle
  • Edmond Sumner (R)


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How the Jazz went from losing Gordon Hayward to building a contender in 2 years

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Utah’s lowest moment was less than two years ago, and now, they’re in an even better position.

When Gordon Hayward signed with the Boston Celtics in the summer of 2017, it was supposed to be a death knell for the Utah Jazz. Small market franchises, even ones as stable and well-run as Utah, are not supposed to be recover from losing a player they drafted and developed to the point of stardom.

Less than two years after that fateful day, the Jazz have not only recovered, they will enter next season as one of the leading contenders to come out of a wide-open Western Conference. With Mike Conley in at point guard, along with free agent shooter Bojan Bogdanovic and everyone’s favorite backup big man Ed Davis picked up in free agency, the Jazz have shored up significant weaknesses and made themselves more versatile.

It’s easy to forget in the wake of all that has happened since that day, but losing Hayward was viewed as a gut punch that rocked general manager Dennis Lindsey’s carefully planned foundation to the core. With Hayward leading the charge, Lindsey had built a 50-win team that advanced to the second round of the playoffs for the first time since the 2010 season, back when Deron Williams was still running pick-and-rolls for Jerry Sloan.

Those intervening years were difficult ones for the franchise as they transitioned from the end of the Sloan era and hired Lindsey to replace longtime executive Kevin O’Connor in 2012. Utah was rarely bad enough to gain a top draft pick, nor were they good enough to be taken seriously.

The 2017 team was the product of a long rebuilding arc. That they were run off the floor by the eventual champion Warriors was less important than reaching the point of stable contention again. With Hayward gone, Utah wasn’t exactly starting over, but its path back to that point seemed murky at best.

What no one realized at the time was that Utah already had Hayward’s replacement lined up in Donovan Mitchell. Drafted No. 13 overall just weeks prior, Mitchell emerged on the NBA scene as a ready-made lead scorer with the personality and focus to become a legitimate franchise player.

Pairing Mitchell with center Rudy Gobert — another late-first-round find — gave Utah a solid foundation to rebuild from the ashes. Add in Aussie revelation Joe Ingles on the wing with a handful of solid veterans, and the Jazz barely skipped a beat by returning to the conference semifinals, where they fell to the Houston Rockets.

Utah won 50 games again the following season, but once again were run off the court in the playoffs by the Rockets. That last part was the issue facing Lindsey this summer. The Warriors’ dynasty may have run its course, but the Rockets are still very much in play as long as they can get over themselves. Utah needed to evolve if it wanted to compete with the very best in the West.

The Jazz went into the offseason needing not only more shooting and playmaking, but also positional flexibility. On paper, they’ve succeeded on all counts. Long considered one of the league’s top floor generals and underrated defenders, Conley brings a complete package of skills to Utah’s backcourt that should compliment Mitchell’s evolving game.

Bogdanovic and Davis help alleviate the frontcourt concerns. A shooter’s scorer, Bogdanonivic quietly averaged 18 points a game for the Pacers last season while making better than 42 percent of his attempts from behind the arc. Davis, the Boss Man, brings rebounding, toughness, and a well-deserved rep as one of the NBA’s best teammates.

Their additions do come at a cost. The price for Conley, who is entering the final year of his contract, was steep. It included veteran swingman Jae Crowder, sharpshooter Kyle Korver, and last year’s top draft pick Grayson Allen, along with their top pick in this year’s draft and a future protected first-rounder. Utah also waived point guard Raul Neto and traded Derrick Favors to New Orleans for draft picks to clear cap space. Incumbent point guard Ricky Rubio’s departure was a foregone conclusion.

Still, Conley and Bogdanovic are clear upgrades over Rubio and Crowder. Bogdanovic’s presence could also shift Ingles to the bench, where he’d be an ideal sixth man. Davis essentially steps into Favors’ spot as a backup center for Gobert. There are still depth issues to address, and left unsaid is that Utah really needs Dante Exum to stay healthy and begin reaching his potential.

All in all, it’s a long way from that dark day in July of 2017. There are no guarantees in this sport, as we’ve been reminded time and again the last few years, but the Jazz are going for it in a Western Conference that looks as wide open as its been in the last half decade. What a great recovery.


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Mika, Mexico City Hailstorm, Boris Johnson, AOC vs Ivanka, Scooter Braun, Henry Cavill: HOT LINKS

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OUT OF CONTEXT? UK PM hopeful Boris Johnson says homophobic and racist slurs were out of context: ‘Boris Johnson has refused to apologize for articles he has written referring to black people as “piccaninnies” with “watermelon smiles” and calling gay people “bumboys,” saying his comments were “wholly satirical.”‘

SCOOTER BRAUN. Todrick Hall steps up for Taylor Swift, calling his former manager “homophobic.”

TRUMP ABROAD. The entire family is a global embarrassment.

AOC VS IVANKA. “It may be shocking to some, but being someone’s daughter actually isn’t a career qualification. It hurts our diplomatic standing when the President phones it in & the world moves on. The US needs our President working the G20. Bringing a qualified diplomat couldn’t hurt either.”

PARADISE. The story behind Asbury Park’s most famous gay nightclub.

PAKISTAN. “Unhappy” father kills transgender daughter.

4TH OF JULY. Trump wants tanks on National Mall.

FLORIDA. SAVE suspends executive director who invited gay bashers to annual gala.

PATRICK MAULDIN. Trump consultant created fake Joe Biden campaign site: ‘From top to bottom, the website, JoeBiden.info, breezily mocks the candidate in terms that would warm the heart of any Bernie Sanders supporter: There are GIFs of Mr. Biden touching women and girls, and blurbs about his less-than-liberal policy positions, including his opposition to court-ordered busing in the 1970s and his support for the Iraq war. Pull quotes highlight some of his more famous verbal gaffes, like his description of his future boss, Barack Obama, as “articulate and bright and clean.” The introductory text declares, “Uncle Joe is back and ready to take a hands-on approach to America’s problems!”’

NY STATE OF MIND. Trump tweets suggest something bad for him is coming down the pike.

INVITATION ACCEPTED. US soccer star Megan Rapinoe accepts invitation from AOC for a tour of the US House of Representatives.

MALE MODEL MONDAY. Chase Mattson, Chad White, Michael Yerger, Marlon Teixeira, Scott Gardner and MORE.

ISTANBUL. Police use tear gas to disperse gay pride march.

HAVING MORE FUN. Henry Cavill is now a blonde.

GAY PULP FICTION. Brown University is archiving gay pulp fiction: ‘Brown’s collection, which includes books from the 1950s to the 1990s, isn’t just a few thousand dirty books. The archive preserves one way LGBTQ people made art, explored their identities and shared in community before it was accepted in the mainstream. “If you think about gay communities before the internet was around, before it was legal in many places to engage in gay relationships, in gay sexual activity, this was a way that they could kind of explore their interests, which is a pretty tame way of saying it,” says Heather Cole, the library’s curator of literary and popular culture collections.’

CRAZY WEATHER OF THE DAY. Mexico City hailstorm.

MUSIC VIDEO OF THE DAY. Meg Myers “Running Up That Hill”.

MUSIC VIDEO II OF THE DAY. Mika “Ice Cream”.

MONDAY MUSCLE. Bruno Araujo.

View this post on Instagram

#beproud #pride #stonewall50

A post shared by Bruno Araujo Personal Trainer (@araujosilva85) on

The post Mika, Mexico City Hailstorm, Boris Johnson, AOC vs Ivanka, Scooter Braun, Henry Cavill: HOT LINKS appeared first on Towleroad Gay News.


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Nivea skincare dropped by ad agency after allegedly saying “we don’t do gay”

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FCB is one of the largest advertising agencies in the world, representing some of the biggest brands today, ranging from Coca-Cola to Levi’s to Nivea skincare.

In a leaked internal memo written by FCB CEO Carter Murray, the agency says it will be terminating its account with the skincare company at the end of 2019, when its contract expires.

According to Ad Age, it all started when the brand rejected an image FCB pitched depicting two men’s hands touching.

In a call with FCB creatives, a rep from Nivea, which is owned by the Hamburg, Germany-based company Beiersdorf, allegedly said, “We don’t do gay at Nivea,” unaware that one of the people they were talking to was gay.

In the leaked memo, which is marked “strictly confidential,” Murray explains to staff: “There comes a point in every longterm relationship when you reflect on what you’ve accomplished together and set your sails for where your journey will take you next.”

“Sometimes that journey ahead demands tough choices that lead down different paths.”

Murray goes on to say that the decision to part ways came after “much reflection and discussion on our creative ambitions” and that he hopes FCB employees will “take pride in what we accomplished together and come to respect the many difficult factors we had to carefully weigh to take this step.”

According to Murray’s memo, other Beiersdorf brands, including Eucerin and Hansaplast, will remain under contact with FCB. But not Nivea. Because, evidently, they don’t “do gay.”

In a statement, Beiersdorf says the decision for Nivea to part ways with FCB was due to “profound transformation of our industry and the advertising landscape,” adding:

We are an international company with more than 20,000 employees with very different genders, ethnicities, orientations, backgrounds and personalities worldwide. Through our products, we touch millions of consumers around the globe every day. We know and cherish that individuality and diversity in all regards brings inspiration and creativity to our society and to us as a company. No form of discrimination, direct and indirect, is tolerated.

Since the document leaked, FCB has declined to issue any further comment on the matter.


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Mayor Pete boasts huge second quarter fundraising total, further proving that gays do it better

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Pete Buttigieg talking

To borrow a term from Ronald Reagan, he has “The Big Mo” (as in momentum).

Presidential hopeful Mayor Pete Buttigieg sent gasps through the political world as he announced his donation haul for the second quarter of 2019: a whopping $24.8 million.

$24.8 million!

The openly-gay mayor of South Bend, Indiana and Afgan war veteran caused a sensation when he announced his run for the Democratic Presidential Nomination earlier this year.

In a matter of just a few months, Buttigieg has attracted wide attention for his political style and goals, along with 400,000 unique donors.

Last week, he also drew accolades for his debate performance, in which he overshadowed early nomination front runner, Vice President Joe Biden.

According to CNN:

The South Bend, Indiana, mayor enters the third quarter of the year with $22.6 million cash on hand, campaign press secretary Chris Meagher said, and the campaign’s donor base has grown to 400,000 total unique donors for the entire campaign, with 230,000 new in the second quarter.

Buttigieg’s average contribution size for the cycle is $47.42, the aide added. Buttigieg headlined over 70 in-person fundraisers this quarter, including over a dozen large ’grassroots’ events that blend the size of a large campaign rally with the cash generation power of a fundraiser, an aide told CNN.

Buttigieg currently polls around fifth among the Democratic candidates, after Biden, Sen. Bernie Sanders, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, and Sen. Kamala Harris.

His grassroots campaigning has sent a clear message through the Democratic field: he’s here to stay.

Related: New poll finds Mayor Pete walloping Trump in head-to-head election matchup


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Tom Holland says Spider-Man should be gay because “the world isn’t as simple as a straight white guy”

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Just ahead of the release of the new Spider-film Far From Home, actor Tom Holland said he’d be totally down with a gay Spider-Man.

When asked directly about the possibility, 23-year-old Holland told The Sunday Times: “Yeah, of course! I can’t talk about the future of the character because honestly I don’t know and it’s out of my hands.”

He continued: “But I do know a lot about the future of Marvel, and they are going to be representing lots of different people in the next few years. The world isn’t as simple as a straight white guy. It doesn’t end there, and these films need to represent more than one type of person.”

Holland’s remarks also fit with those of Marvel’s production chief Victoria Alonzo, who has said Marvel is committed to a diverse cast of heroes, including a gay superhero.

“Why would we only want to be recognized by only one type of person?” she told Variety earlier this year. “Our audience is global, is diverse, is inclusive. If we don’t do it that way for them, we will fail.”

Rumors continue to circulate that Marvel plans to have a gay lead in its upcoming film version of The Eternals, with several out-gay actors confirmed to have tested for the role.

Frankly, we’d consider either possibility a win, though we would seriously love to see Holland’s Peter Parker locking lips with another guy. Don’t pretend you wouldn’t watch…

Related: Jake Gyllenhaal worked Tom Holland over so hard he couldn’t walk


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LGBTQ rights group apologizes for accidentally honoring four men involved in antigay hate crime

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Well, this is awkward.

A spokesman for SAVE, South Florida’s largest queer advocacy group, has issued an apology after honoring four men accused of a violent attack on a gay couple in what police are investigating as a hate crime.

Tony Lima, Executive Director for SAVE, released a Facebook apology video on Friday claiming he spoke in “haste” following a ceremony in which he recognized the four men for their charity work while speaking at an annual Champions of Equality Gala for SAVE.

In the video, Lima explains that SAVE was contacted by the parents of 21-year-old Juan Lopez several weeks ago to arrange for Lopez to volunteer with the group.

Lopez and three other men–Adonis Diaz, 21, Pablo Reinaldo Romo-Figueroa, 21, and Luis Alonso-Piovet, 20–all spent several hours volunteering with SAVE doing menial tasks like data entry for the group. They also bought tickets to the Gala, as did Lopez’s parents.

At the time, Lima was apparently unaware that the four men faced hate crime and aggravated battery charges related to an attack last June.

Following Pride celebrations in 2018, video captured the four men attacking Rene Chalarca and Dmitry Logunov for being gay, as well as Helmut Muller Estrada, a passerby who stepped in to try and break up the fight. According to the victims, the four men shouted anti-gay slurs during the beating, which nearby cameras also caught on video.

In addition to Lima’s statement, SAVE also released a statement of apology on Facebook.

“We want to extend our deepest apologies first, to the victims, and equally, to the community for any insensitivity that may have been conveyed on our behalf by their attendance and mention at the gala,” it read.

“We are currently investigating this matter more thoroughly to determine the facts around the attendance and recognition of these individuals and will be providing an update to our supporters and the community at large as soon as we gather all the appropriate information.”

An attorney for Lopez continues to deny the hate crime charges, as Lopez’s father is gay and in a relationship with another man.

Meanwhile, the Office of the State’s Attorney released a statement claiming that the four suspects were in no way wrongfully accused and that the office will continue to pursue charges of battery and hate crimes against the four men.

Related: Disturbing video captures gay couple being violently attacked at Miami Beach Pride


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Liberals and Conservatives Have Wildly Different TV-Viewing Habits – But These 5 Shows Bring Everyone Together

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Shemar Moore in “Criminal Minds”

There’s been a lot of concern about how conservatives and liberals consume their news from sources that merely confirm their preexisting beliefs. The result, supposedly, has been a disintegration of a shared reality and a fracturing of the nation’s political life.

But does this trend extend to the shows we choose to watch on TV to relax and unwind?

Since 2007, the Norman Lear Center at the University of Southern California has been tracking how Americans’ favorite TV shows are connected to their attitudes on a host of hot-button political issues.

In each of these studies – including our most recent one – we found that people with different political beliefs seem to be drawn to different types of TV entertainment.

But in the most recent study, there was also a distinct overlap: certain shows that appealed to everyone across the political spectrum. These programs, we found, tend to have a quality that, at the very least, hints at some shared values in a polarizing age.

Preferences of ‘Blues,’ ‘Purples’ and ‘Reds’

For the study, we surveyed more than 3,000 people using a national sample designed to represent the U.S. population.

Respondents were asked about their entertainment preferences, viewing behaviors and their feelings about specific television shows. They were also asked about their happiness, political beliefs, voting history and personal traits.

Using a statistical clustering analysis, we identified three ideological groups in the United States that share common attitudes and values, regardless of voting history or political party preferences.

  1. Blues, who have liberal attitudes toward abortion, the environment, guns, marriage and immigration, make up 47% of the population. This group has the most women and the largest number of African Americans. They’re also the least satisfied with their lives.

  2. Purples, a swing group comprising 18% of the population, hold positions across the political spectrum. This group has the largest share of Asians and Hispanics, and those in it are the most religious and the most satisfied with their lives.

  3. Reds make up 35% of the country and hold conservative views on most issues. They’re sympathetic toward the police and skeptical about affirmative action, immigrants and Islam. Reds have the highest proportion of senior citizens.

Each group demonstrated its own particular taste in media and entertainment.

Blues like many more TV shows than Reds and are open to viewing foreign films and TV series, as well as content that doesn’t reflect their values. Many Blues enjoy watching “Modern Family,” “The Big Bang Theory,” “The Simpsons,” “South Park” and “Law & Order: SVU.”

Purples are the most voracious TV viewers and enjoy more about the viewing experience than other groups. They appreciate the educational value of TV programming and are the most likely to say they take action based on what they learn about politics and social issues from fictional movies and TV shows. Their favorite shows include “The Voice” and “Dancing with the Stars,” but they also like “Saturday Night Live” – a favorite among Blues as well – and “Duck Dynasty,” which is preferred by Reds.

Reds say they seldom watch entertainment TV, but when they do, many claim they watch for an adrenaline boost. They prefer the Hallmark, History and Ion channels far more than others, while their favorite show is “NCIS.”

The shows that bring everyone together

And yet there was some significant overlap.

Five shows that all three ideological groups watched include “America’s Funniest Home Videos,” “Bones,” “Criminal Minds,” “MythBusters” and “Pawn Stars.” Four of these shows were well-liked, but “Pawn Stars” was actually one of the least-liked shows in our sample of 50. (We concluded that “Pawn Stars” had the dubious distinction of being the most hate-watched show in America.)

But what about those four shows that everyone seems to like? What common elements might they share?

My suspicion, one that we’ll explore in the next iteration of this study, is that all four of these shows – and even “Pawn Stars,” to an extent – value truth.

“Bones” and “Criminal Minds” are classic police procedurals: whodunits that follow a string of clues to arrive at a fact-based conclusion. “MythBusters” is entirely about the delights of scientific skepticism and the quest for truth. And I would argue that the clips seen on “America’s Funniest Home Videos” remain appealing after all these years precisely because they’re so raw and unscripted; we all delight in real human foibles, the stuff that we think we couldn’t make up if we tried. Even in “Pawn Stars,” customers discover the true market value of their treasured items.

In a cultural moment defined by moral panic around fake news and alternative facts, perhaps it shouldn’t come as a surprise that the neutral ground Americans of all political stripes have chosen is storytelling devoted to finding the bad guy, debunking the myth and exposing how silly humans can really be.

Johanna Blakley, Managing Director, The Norman Lear Center, University of Southern California, Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

The post Liberals and Conservatives Have Wildly Different TV-Viewing Habits – But These 5 Shows Bring Everyone Together appeared first on Towleroad Gay News.


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