Friday, December 10, 2010

A LITTLE RESPECT - New Erasure Remix

A new remix of Erasure's classic "A Little Respect," featuring the youth chorus of the Hetrick-Martin Institute. It's terrifice!

Monday, November 22, 2010

GAYS & LESBIANS MOST LIKELY TO SUFFER HATE CRIMES

From LGBTQNation, comes this fascinating ... and troubling ... report.

Report: gays, lesbians more likely to be victims of violent hate crime than any other minority.

Gays and lesbians are far more likely to be victims of a violent hate crime than any other minority group in the United States, according to a new analysis of federal hate crime statistics released Monday by Southern Poverty Law Center.

The SPLC’s Intelligence Report, released today to coincide with the scheduled release of the FBI’s hate crime statistics for 2009, provides analysis of 14 years of hate crime data found that homosexuals, or those perceived to be gay, are more than twice as likely to be attacked in a violent hate crime as Jews or blacks; more than four times as likely as Muslims; and 14 times as likely as Latinos.

The findings are based on FBI hate crime statistics from 1995 to 2008, the period for which there is complete data. The basic pattern also holds true in individual years.

The report also explores how the hard-core anti-gay movement in America is becoming more extreme in the face of gay rights advances.

“As Americans become more accepting of homosexuals, the most extreme elements of the anti-gay movement are digging in their heels and continuing to defame gays and lesbians with falsehoods that grow more incendiary by the day,” said Mark Potok, editor of SLPC’s Intelligence Report.

“The leaders of this movement may deny it, but it seems clear that their demonization of homosexuals plays a role in fomenting the violence, hatred and bullying we’re seeing,” Potok said.

Eighteen anti-gay groups are profiled in the Winter 2010 issue, which also contains an article debunking 10 key claims spread by the anti-gay movement to demonize homosexuals. These claims – ranging from the myth that homosexuals don’t live nearly as long as heterosexuals to the utterly bizarre claim that gays helped orchestrate the Holocaust – are examined in detail.

The Intelligence Report also profiles 18 anti-gay groups whose influence reaches far beyond what their size would suggest, because the “facts” they disseminate about homosexuality are often amplified by certain politicians, other groups and even news organizations, according to the SPLC.

Among the list of 18, the SPLC specifically lists 13 “hate groups” based on their propagation of known falsehoods; the list includes:

Abiding Truth Ministries — its founder, Scott Lively, is responsible for a book, widely cited by gay-bashers, accusing homosexuals of running the Nazi Party.

American Family Association — specializes in “combating the homosexual agenda.” Bryan Fischer, the group’s director of analysis for government and policy, has proposed criminalizing homosexual behavior and has advocated forcing gays into “reparative” therapy.

Americans for Truth About Homosexuality — compares the alleged dangers of homosexuality to those of “smoking, alcohol and drug abuse.” Its website carries essays describing homosexuality as a “lethal behavior addiction,” a “dangerous” practice that is “neither normal nor benign.”

Family Research Council — headed by former Louisiana State Rep. Tony Perkins, the FRC has been a font of anti-gay propaganda throughout its history. Earlier this year, board member Peter Sprigg said he believes that “gay behavior” should be criminalized, and that allowing gays to serve openly in the military would lead to an increase in gay-on-straight sexual assaults.

Faithful Word Baptist Church — its leader, Steven Anderson, said “The biggest hypocrite in the world is the person who believes in the death penalty for murderers but not for homosexuals.” He has described gays as “sodomites” who “recruit through rape” and “recruit through molestation.”

The remaining 8 groups on the hate list: American Vision, the Chalcedon Foundation, the Dove World Outreach Center, the Family Research Institute, Heterosexuals Organized for a Moral Environment, the Illinois Family Institute, MassResistance, and the Traditional Values Coalition.

The remaining 5 groups make up the balance of the 18 anti-gay organizations identified by the SPLC: the Christian Anti-Defamation Commission, Concerned Women for America, Coral Ridge Ministries, Liberty Counsel, and the National Organization for Marriage.

SPLC’s report also includes an article debunking 10 key claims spread by the anti-gay movement to demonize homosexuals.

The complete SPLC Intelligence Report is here — it’s a fascinating read.

'LOVER" -- Tom Goss

Very moving new song by Tom Goss, inspired by the DADT controversy.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

LEATHER ARCHIVES - VISITING SCHOLAR PROGRAM

Leather Archives & Museum Press Release


Leather Archives & Museum announces 2011 - 2012 Visiting Scholar Program


November 20th, 2010

Chicago, IL - The Leather Archives & Museum [LA&M] announces the 2011 - 2012 Visiting Scholar Program at the Leather Archives & Museum for the Fall 2011 or Spring 2012 academic terms. A stipend of $1,000 to $1,500 will be awarded to one recipient scholar to conduct research using the collections of the LA&M. The amount of the award will be dependent on the scope of the proposed project. A $500 travel allowance and up to four weeknight accommodations will also be provided to the recipient.

The award is available to three types of scholars:

1) Scholars with academic appointments

2) Graduate students pursing an MFA or PhD

3) Independent scholars with an established research agenda


The LA&M is seeking projects that may enhance the institution's mission to disseminate information to the public about the history of the leather / fetish / BDSM community and its culture. Toward that end, we are particularly interested in proposals that may provide materials for display in its galleries, as a traveling exhibit or as an online exhibition.

For more information and to apply:

Applications for the program must be postmarked by March 15th, 2011. For information on how to apply, please visit the program's website.



About Leather Archives & Museum
The Leather Archives & Museum is a library, museum and archives pertaining to leather and alternative sexual communities. The geographic collection scope is worldwide and includes all sexual orientations and genders. The library collection contains books, magazines, scholarly publications, films and electronic resources related to the subject matter. The museum collection contains original erotic art and artifacts from alternative sex organizations and individuals. The archival collection contains unpublished papers and records from notable activists, artists, businesses and organizations related to the subject matter. For more information about the LA&M, please visit http://www.leatherarchives.org.


Leather Archives & Museum
Rick Storer
Executive Director
773.761.9200

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Thirteen Protest DADT at WHITE HOUSE FENCE



Thirteen protestors, members of GetEQUAL, chained themselves to the White House Fence on Tuesday, November 16, 2010.

Monday, November 15, 2010

STOP THE BULLYING, pt. 2 - From the Mouth of a Child

Listen to this appeal from a fourteen-year old boy to his school board. Gay youth are coming out earlier and earlier, and they need our support and protection. They need us to listen and stand up for them.


Thursday, November 11, 2010

No H8 -- Stop the Bullying Video

This very powerful anti-bullying message comes from the No H8 campaign and features numerous celebrities, including Cindy McCain.

"Modern Tribalism" at the Leather Archives


Leather Archives & Museum Press Release



Leather Archives & Museum announces Fakir Musafar celebration
Fakir as The Perfect Gentleman, 1959

November 10th, 2010

The Leather Archives & Museum announced today that it will host a celebration of Fakir Musafar on June 24th, 2011 at its 6418 N. Greenview Avenue location in Chicago. The event will celebrate Fakir's fifty year's research and exploration of primitive body decoration and rituals and the addition of the Fakir Musafar collection to the museum. An exhibition of this collection will coincide with the event.

Fakir, the Father of the Modern Primitive Movement, has contributed to spirituality, body modification and SM culture through books, photography, films, lecture and performance. He has appeared on NBC's Faith Daniels Show, CBS's People Are Talking, CNN's Earth Matters and the Discovery Channel (Beyond Bizarre). He has also appeared in documentaries for The Learning Channel, TBS, FX, and the 2001 film "Modern Tribalism". For more information about Fakir Musufar, visit http://fakir.org.

This event is made possible by a generous grant from The Cumulus Fund.

About Leather Archives & Museum
The Leather Archives & Museum is a library, museum and archives pertaining to leather and alternative sexual communities. The geographic collection scope is worldwide and includes all sexual orientations and genders. The library collection contains books, magazines, scholarly publications, films and electronic resources related to the subject matter. The museum collection contains original erotic art and artifacts from alternative sex organizations and individuals. The archival collection contains unpublished papers and records from notable activists, artists, businesses and organizations related to the subject matter. For more information about the LA&M, please visit http://www.leatherarchives.org.


Leather Archives & Museum
Rick Storer
Executive Director
773.761.9200

Monday, November 1, 2010

Vote Tuesday - Vote Democratic!

I've wanted to say something about this for weeks, but haven't found the right words. People talk about an "enthusiasm gap," and much of the gay community is angry at Obama for moving so slowly on "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" and on the repeal of DOMA. A lot of gay people are talking about sitting this mid-term election out. You must not do that!

Progress on some key issues has not happened as fast as we'd all hoped. But there has been genuine progress. And none of that progress, not one piece of it, would have come with a Republican administration. And if Republicans take either the House or the Senate because we sat the elecction out, any further progress on gay rights will come to a screeching halt. Please go vote. Vote with your rights in mind, and vote with your families in mind.

I can't say it well enough. Instead, listen to these words from John Berry, who is the highest ranking gay man in the Obama administration. An administration that has appointed over 150 gay and lesbian people, more than any other president in history, to high positions on his team.

"In under two years, President Obama and his record number of LGBT appointees have accomplished so much for LGBT Americans. His and Congress’s historic achievement of securing health care reform finally cements the most important protections for those in our community who need them most – especially those living with HIV and AIDS.

"Hospital visitation rights for all Americans, expanded benefits for the same-sex domestic partners of Federal workers, enactment of the hate crimes law, increased coverage for those living with HIV/AIDS, Federal support for LGBT community-based organizations, anti-bullying programs enacted in schools, support for our aging LGBT population, and so much more. These are real, concrete achievements that are saving and improving the lives of countless LGBT Americans right now.

"I realize that this subtle – but dramatic – change is hard to appreciate when full equality is in sight. It’s understandable. I’m not taking my eyes off the goal or asking you to. Indeed, the President is the first to say that change hasn’t come fast enough. But he has called on all of us to charge full speed ahead. The Tree of Liberty grows only by adding rings. From the Revolution to the Civil War, to women’s suffrage, the Civil Rights Movement, and onward, our entire nation has been enriched by every added ring. Now is our time to complete our ring."

"All Administration officials, me included, are accountable to that goal; to the principles upon which our Republic was founded – liberty and justice for all. We will not rest until discriminatory laws like Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell and the Defense of Marriage Act are ended once and for all. And because no one should be denied a job because of discrimination, a fully inclusive Employment Non-Discrimination Act must be enacted as well.

"So hold us to account. Let us know when we’re right, be the wind in our sails when our momentum flags, and pull us back to the path when we go astray. But whatever you do, don’t turn away. Don’t give up. Don’t relent." - Office of Personnel Management director John Berry, the highest-ranking openly gay Obama appointee, in a coming issue of Philadelphia Gay News.

Monday, October 18, 2010

IT WILL GET BETTER - Chris Salvatore



KNOCK-OUT SONG WRITTEN AND PERFORMED BY CHRIS SALVATORE FOR THE "IT GETS BETTER" PROJECT.

Friday, October 15, 2010

"Somebody to Love Me" Mark Ronson & Boy George

This third single from Mark Ronson's new album, "Record Collections," features 80s legend Boy George. It's a knock-out song.



Mark Ronson - Somebody To Love (Official Video)
Uploaded by PayeTaChatte. - See the latest featured music videos.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Atlanta Eage Raid - Police Broke Law!

Police Broke Law in Atl. Gay Bar Raid
Advocate.com Editors



The Atlanta Citizen Review Board determined that 24 police officers acted improperly when they raided the Eagle gay bar last year, but it opted not to take disciplinary action because it could only impose a three-day suspension on officers.

According to WABE, the board considered the two issues of false imprisonment and abusive language regarding the raid last September.

“The first involved charges of false imprisonment. The board found officers had no legal right to search, detain, and run criminal database checks on the 60+ patrons, because none were suspected of any crime.

“The second issue, abusive language, wasn't so easy. Although both CRB investigators and the board agreed officers likely used abusive and homophobic language, they couldn't identify responsible officers. The board, unwillingly, agreed not to sustain those charges.”

The board tabled disciplinary action because members wanted tougher penalties than the maximum three-day suspension, according to WABE.

The Atlanta police department has yet to release the results of its internal investigation into the raid, while a federal lawsuit proceeds.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Friday, August 6, 2010

NOM'S HATE POLUTES MY STATE!

The National Organization for Marriage brought their hate tour to St. Louis yesterday.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

LEATHER ARCHIVES - PRESIDENT'S AWARD

Leather Archives & Museum 2010 President's Award Recipients Announced


August 5, 2010

The recipients of the 2010 Leather Archives & Museum President's Award were announced today.

Sir Top and slave bonnie


Sir Top and slave bonnie, residing in South Florida, held the titles of SouthEast regional Master and slave 2007. They produce the event Beyond Leather in Fort Lauderdale, Florida each April. Through their titles, events and extensive teaching engagements, Sir Top and slave bonnie have raised awareness and funding for the Leather Archives & Museum and now are working closely with the Women's Leather History Project on their new project titled, "Women's International Leather Legacy" contest to be held in June at The Women's International Leatherfest.

They most recently completed the adoption of the women's bathroom at the museum. They are also Directors of MAsT (Masters And slaves Together) South Florida and owners of the Florida LeatherSIR / Leatherboy, Community Bootblack and the International Pony Play Championships hosted by Beyond Leather.

The award was presented to Sir Top and slave bonnie during Beyond Leather 2010, held April 23rd through 25th, 2010.

Bruce H.

Bruce is a founding member of the Portland Leather Alliance and, over the years has held many posts in that organization including Member-at-Large, Vice-President, Membership Director, KinkFest Director and three terms as President. He has helped to organize or run most of the
Portland Leather Alliances' events at one time or another over the years. Throughout the years
Bruce has been an energetic supporter of the Leather Archives & Museum and its goals and ideals. He recently began the process of adopting the Organizational and Presidential Papers
collection at the Museum.

The award was presented to Bruce at a ceremony held in Portland, OR on June 2nd, 2010.

About the Award

The Leather Archives & Museum President's Award is presented annually to individuals or organizations who have supported the mission of the Leather Archives in significant ways. Previous recipients are:

2005 - Roger Klorese
2006 - Dennis McMahon and Robert Miller
2007 - Mary Elizabeth Boyd / Eric Lawrence
2008 - Howard Zusel
2009 - International Ms. Leather, Inc.




About Leather Archives & Museum
The Leather Archives & Museum is a library, museum and archives pertaining to leather and alternative sexual communities. The geographic collection scope is worldwide and includes all sexual orientations and genders. The library collection contains books, magazines, scholarly publications, films and electronic resources related to the subject matter. The museum collection contains original erotic art and artifacts from alternative sex organizations and individuals. The archival collection contains unpublished papers and records from notable activists, artists, businesses and organizations related to the subject matter. For more information about the LA&M, please visit http://www.leatherarchives.org.


Leather Archives & Museum
Rick Storer
Executive Director
773.761.9200

Thursday, July 15, 2010

ARGENTINA -- FOR GAY MARRIAGE!

It's a good day for human rights and marriage equality. By a six-vote margin, Argentina has become the first South American country to legalize same-sex marriage. Meanwhile, here at home in the Disctrict of Columbia, the DC Court of Appeals has upheld that city's Human Rights Act and denied an effort to place a repeal measure on that city's next ballot after same-sex marriage became legal this past March. Go, Argentina! Go, Washington, DC. Watch the video below for a street crowd's reaction to the Argentina announcement, which came roughly at 4:30 a.m.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Katie Melua - "The Flood"

I seem to be in a musical mood lately, and I'm finding a lot of stuff I like. I'd never heard of Katie Melua until I saw this video on joemygod.com. I'm sharing it here and looking forward to downloading it later. You can find the unmixed version on Youtube.com

And if anyone can tell me why about a quarter of my video posts get cut off on the right side, I'd appreciate the advice!





Broken people get recycled

And I hope that I will

Sometimes we're thrown off our pathways

What I thought was my way home

Wasn't the place I know.

No, I'm not afraid of changing,

I'm certain nothing's certain

What we own becomes our prison

My possessions will be gone

Back to where they came from

Blame

No one is to blame

As natural as the rain that falls

Here comes the Flood again

Monday, July 12, 2010

I'm not a huge fan of Lady Gaga, and this is not one of her videos. While I appreciate her showmanship, mostly, I find her music vapid, to say the least. On the other hand, I have to say that she's inspired some of the funniest musical spoofs I've seen, and this one, by drag performer Sherry Vines, may be the very best. It's not just a spoof- it's a spoof with a message! Enjoy!


Friday, July 2, 2010

CLAW ANNOUNCES LOGO CONTEST




CLAW - Announces Logo Design Contest



Calling all artistic brothers and sisters: your submission wanted!

CLAW is seeking the artwork we'll use on the CLAW 10 t-shirts, posters, advertising and more. They will choose one iconic leather image to represent CLAW 10. The winning artist will receive two weekend passes, the bragging rights and will enjoy having their image reproduced hundreds of thousands of times around the world. The deadline for submissions is Friday, July 23, 2010 with the winning design announced by July 31, 2010.

For more information about this contest, please see the CLAW Logo Contest Page




Past CLAW art:















Forward

Friday, June 25, 2010

IML RAISES $60,000 FOR LEATHER MUSEUM

(Photo by BullManX)


International Mr. Leather raises over $60,000 for Leather Archives & Museum

CHICAGO, IL - June 23, 2010 - The Leather Archives & Museum announces that International Mr. Leather raised over $60,000 during the Memorial Day 2010 event. Support was raised through donations made at the IML Leather Market, a Roast of IML 2009 Jeffrey Payne held at the museum, silent auctions, a raffle, a membership drive and museum store sales.

Executive Director Rick Storer said "International Mr. Leather is a major fundraising vehicle for the museum, with a total budget of approximately $250,000 nearly 25% of our support comes from this weekend." In addition to fundraising events, approximately 300 people toured the museum during the weekend and thousands saw the temporary exhibition mounted in the IML Leather Market.


About Leather Archives & Museum
The Leather Archives & Museum is a library, museum and archives pertaining to leather and alternative sexual communities. The geographic collection scope is worldwide and includes all sexual orientations and genders. The library collection contains books, magazines, scholarly publications, films and electronic resources related to the subject matter. The museum collection contains original erotic art and artifacts from alternative sex organizations and individuals. The archival collection contains unpublished papers and records from notable activists, artists, businesses and organizations related to the subject matter. For more information about the LA&M, please visit http://www.leatherarchives.org.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

LEATHER ARCHIVE HOSTS AMERICAN BROTHERHOOD WEEKEND!


Leather Archives Proud Host And Sponsor of American Brotherhood Weekend 2010


The Leather Archives & Museum is pleased to welcome the contestants, judges, organizers and participants of the American Brotherhood Weekend, which takes place in Chicago July 16-18, 2010.

The final portion of the contest, including the announcement of the winner, will take place in the Etienne Auditorium on Sunday, July 18. For more information, visit the ABW website at:

http://www.americanbrotherhood.com/ABW/Home.html

Thursday, June 17, 2010

CHUCK RENSLOW, IML FOUNDER, ESTABLISHES NEW FOUNDATION



Leather Archives & Museum News Release

International Mr. Leather set to transfer to the Renslow Charitable Foundation benefiting the Leather Archives


CHICAGO -Chuck Renslow, founder of International Mr. Leather and the Leather Archives & Museum, announced plans to donate or give International Mr. Leather, Inc. to the Renslow Charitable Foundation with the Leather Archives & Museum as the sole beneficiary at the 32nd annual IML contest on May 30, 2010.

Renslow cited the creation of the foundation as a way for International Mr. Leather to benefit the international kink and fetish community directly. "I am pleased to announce that all profits from the annual IML contest will flow back to the leather tribe through the LA&M -- the only organization that preserves, displays and celebrates the history of IML, the leather tribe, and the expanding international kink and fetish community."

The Trustees of the Renslow Charitable Foundation will operate the International Mr. Leather Weekend and ensure that all proceeds benefit the LA&M when Renslow retires as IML Executive Producer.

Rick Storer, LA&M Executive Director was overjoyed but not surprised by the announcement. "All of us in the LA&M family are grateful for the continued support and leadership of our founder, Chuck Renslow. Once again, Chuck is setting a stellar example of how each of us can generously support and serve the community that makes our lifestyle real, fun and possible."

About Leather Archives & Museum
The Leather Archives & Museum is a library, museum and archives pertaining to leather and alternative sexual communities. The geographic collection scope is worldwide and includes all sexual orientations and genders. The library collection contains books, magazines, scholarly publications, films and electronic resources related to the subject matter. The museum collection contains original erotic art and artifacts from alternative sex organizations and individuals. The archival collection contains unpublished papers and records from notable activists, artists, businesses and organizations related to the subject matter. For more information about the LA&M, please visit http://www.leatherarchives.org.


About International Mr. Leather, Inc.

The world's leathermen come together to compete for the title of International Mr. Leather each Memorial Day Weekend in Chicago. About 400 gay men gathered in Chicago in 1979 for the first International Mr. Leather contest. Today, the event has grown to be an annual tradition for thousands in the kink and fetish community - drawing contestants and attendees from around the globe. Once an event for "hardcore" leathermen, IML has expanded in recent years to include a more diverse crowd - including women, transgender persons and anyone else curious about leather. For more information about IML, please visit http://www.imrl.com


Leather Archives & Museum
Rick Storer
Executive Director
773.761.9200

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

TYLER McCORMICK - NEW MR. INTERNATIONAL LEATHER!

Tyler McCormick won the title of Mr. International Leather 2010 on Sunday night, May 3ist at the world's largest annual gathering of leathermen and kink-folk.

McCormick, a disabled female-to-male transexual and previous Mr. Rio Grande from New Mexico, won out of a field of fifty competitors. The win marked several "firsts," as discussed by the winner himself in the video.

Congratulations to Tyler McCormick, as well as to Lance Holman (1st runner up) and Jack Duke (2nd runner up) for a great job!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

WHO THE FUCK IS THIS OLD TROLL?

Take one look at that red dress and hat and ask yourself - who's the real queer around here?

Archbishop Andrus Pujats, head of the Catholic church in some tiny spitwad dingleberry Balkan country or another, recently delivered yet another bigoted Catholic screed to some traditional family group. I couldnt resist paraphrasing it.

"We must assert that religion is an acquired vice that can be likened to addiction to drugs, alcoholism, tobacco smoking, etc., so that those who practice it cannot be treated as a 'minority.' We must say that religion can no longer be tolerated in the public sphere so that this disorder is not turned into an instrument of oppression for the detriment of all society. If someone has inclinations to vice, vice must be reined in and treated, and religion is vice. It cannot be respected or protected any longer by erroneously invoking notions of "religious freedom." Religion is not an orientation, nor an inherent trait; it is a lifestyle choice, and it is a perversion."

Monday, May 3, 2010

PIONEERS ANNIVERSARY A SUCCESS!

On Friday evening, April 30th, I had the pleasure to attend, along with my partner, the 35th anniversary celebration of Kansas City's oldest leather club, the KC Pioneers. The event took place in the second floor bar of Missy B's, one of the largest and most popular of Kansas City's gay establishments. Missy B's is owned by Mike Burns, a longtime member and supporter of the KCPioneers.

Mike Burns (right) with Ron Davis (left)

It was great to visit with good friends and also with members of the community we don't see as often anymore, but who turned out for the special celebration. Jan and Mike welcomed us warmly right away. I always enjoy talking with Jan, a terrific photographer and community documentarian whose work often appears in Kansas City gay magazines.

Jan (on right) Joey (on left)

Two huge tables were set up in the middle of the dance floor, and a remarkable quantity of food, all of it made by the Pioneers' members, was set out. A separate table with cakes and other desserts was set up at the end of the dance floor. Ron and I filled our plates and joined good friends Joey Kraley and Dan McMurtry at a corner table to catch up and share news over bites and drinks.

Ron, Dan, Russ, Joey

Two leatherboys from the Texas Lone Stars were also present. Unfortunately, I didn't get the chance to speak with them. The publisher of KC Exposures attended, as well. But best of all an old friend from the past, a nurse named Nancy, attended. Some years ago, during the height of the cowboy dance craze, Nancy was my favorite dance partner. Later, during a medical crisis, she was also briefly my nurse. I had not seen her in ten years. I spotted her first and snapped two photos before she turned around to see where the flash was coming from. Then she stared for a moment before her eyes widened. It was great to catch up and learn that she's doing well. As with everybody, ten years is a long time, and much has changed in our lives.

Nancy and friend

And that thought perhaps was foremost in my mind throughout the evening. There were friends and Pioneers' members not present. Some of passed on. Others have changed to the point that I didn't recognize them. One table had been set aside for the club's copious photo history - books of photographs from meetings, runs, picnics and gatherings through the years. Those photos represented an amazing trip through time.

In some ways, this anniversary celebration represented the closest thing Kansas City has ever had to a "Leather Family Reunion." Indeed, such a "reunion" might be an idea to pursue on its own terms sometime in the future when all the leather clubs and all the leather enthusiasts could come together as one tribe.

But I'm grateful for this one night and for the invitation extended to me to participate. I am not a member of the KC Pioneers, but I've always done my best to support their activities and their goals. They've raised a lot of money for all the various gay causes in this town, and they've helped to foster and maintain a sense of leather community here. I count them as friends, and I wish every one of them well. Thank you, KC Pioneers.











THE PURPOSE OF LEATHER CONTESTS

Alex lindsay, American Leatherman 2009, recently conducted a poll for the "Leatheratti" website asking the question, "What is the purpose of Leather contests?" It's a question I've recently been asking myself as leather events in the midwest continue to decline.

With 140 responses, Lindsay reports some valuable and insightful results. I encourage everyone to check out the poll, which is posted here:

http://www.leatherati.com/leatherati/2010/02/american-leatherman-2009---inside-and-out-alm09-on-the-spot---leatherati-po.html

Sunday, May 2, 2010

THIRD PROTEST AT WHITE HOUSE FENCE



SIX MORE PROTESTERS ARRESTED AT THIRD PROTEST

Over 150 people turned out today for the third protest at the White House fence. The event, organized by GetEQUAL, Queer Rising and Talk About Equality, featured numerous speakers, including former governor and Democratic National Party chairman, Howard Dean, as well as Lt. Dan Choi and Maj. Jim Pietrangelo. Both Choi and Pietrangelo were previously arrested at the March and April demonstrations after chaining themselves to the White House fence.

As the today's rally speakers made their speeches, six civilian protesters, including Anne Tischer, Nora Camp, Alan Bounville, Natasha Dillon, Iana Dibona, and Mark Reed quietly handcuffed themselves to the White House gates.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

MUPPETS VS. "DON'T ASK, DON'T TELL"

You just know those pesky homosexuals are coming for your children when muppets -- MUPPETS! -- are enlisted in the battle to end the military's "Don't Ask, Don't Tell." Enjoy the video! And don't forget to read the streaming banner at the bottom!"

Monday, April 26, 2010

RALLY MAY 2nd AGAINST DADT

First, a group called GetEQUAL rattled the chains of gay complacency with a series of "zaps," chaining themselves to the White House fence, heckling President Obama during a fundraiser for Senator Barbara Boxer, staging sit-ins at the Washington and San Francisco offices of Nancy Pelosi. Seeming to come out of nowhere, they brought new passion to the struggle for equality with their willingness to get confrontational.

Today, Equality Across America , following in the footsteps of GetEQUAL, struck the Phoenix office of Senator John McCain. Five members of EAA entered McCain's office and refused to leave, eventually being arrested.

Now, GetEQUAL is calling for thousands to rally in LaFayette Square at the fence where their members, including Lt. Dan Choi, have twice been arrested, on May 2nd. Watch their video. One month ago, two people chained themselves to that fence. This month six people chained themselves. How many will chain themselves in May? Enough, I hope, to collapse that fence under the weight of Americans demanding equal treatment.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

WISE WORDS FROM TIM WISE



"Imagine if the Tea Party Was Black" - Tim Wise

Let’s play a game, shall we? The name of the game is called “Imagine.” The way it’s played is simple: we’ll envision recent happenings in the news, but then change them up a bit. Instead of envisioning white people as the main actors in the scenes we’ll conjure - the ones who are driving the action - we’ll envision black folks or other people of color instead. The object of the game is to imagine the public reaction to the events or incidents, if the main actors were of color, rather than white. Whoever gains the most insight into the workings of race in America, at the end of the game, wins.

So let’s begin.

Imagine that hundreds of black protesters were to descend upon Washington DC and Northern Virginia, just a few miles from the Capitol and White House, armed with AK-47s, assorted handguns, and ammunition. And imagine that some of these protesters —the black protesters — spoke of the need for political revolution, and possibly even armed conflict in the event that laws they didn’t like were enforced by the government? Would these protester — these black protesters with guns — be seen as brave defenders of the Second Amendment, or would they be viewed by most whites as a danger to the republic? What if they were Arab-Americans? Because, after all, that’s what happened recently when white gun enthusiasts descended upon the nation’s capital, arms in hand, and verbally announced their readiness to make war on the country’s political leaders if the need arose.

Imagine that white members of Congress, while walking to work, were surrounded by thousands of angry black people, one of whom proceeded to spit on one of those congressmen for not voting the way the black demonstrators desired. Would the protesters be seen as merely patriotic Americans voicing their opinions, or as an angry, potentially violent, and even insurrectionary mob? After all, this is what white Tea Party protesters did recently in Washington.

Imagine that a rap artist were to say, in reference to a white president: “He’s a piece of shit and I told him to suck on my machine gun.” Because that’s what rocker Ted Nugent said recently about President Obama.

Imagine that a prominent mainstream black political commentator had long employed an overt bigot as Executive Director of his organization, and that this bigot regularly participated in black separatist conferences, and once assaulted a white person while calling them by a racial slur. When that prominent black commentator and his sister — who also works for the organization — defended the bigot as a good guy who was misunderstood and “going through a tough time in his life” would anyone accept their excuse-making? Would that commentator still have a place on a mainstream network? Because that’s what happened in the real world, when Pat Buchanan employed as Executive Director of his group, America’s Cause, a blatant racist who did all these things, or at least their white equivalents: attending white separatist conferences and attacking a black woman while calling her the n-word.

Imagine that a black radio host were to suggest that the only way to get promoted in the administration of a white president is by “hating black people,” or that a prominent white person had only endorsed a white presidential candidate as an act of racial bonding, or blamed a white president for a fight on a school bus in which a black kid was jumped by two white kids, or said that he wouldn’t want to kill all conservatives, but rather, would like to leave just enough—“living fossils” as he called them—“so we will never forget what these people stood for.” After all, these are things that Rush Limbaugh has said, about Barack Obama’s administration, Colin Powell’s endorsement of Barack Obama, a fight on a school bus in Belleville, Illinois in which two black kids beat up a white kid, and about liberals, generally.

Imagine that a black pastor, formerly a member of the U.S. military, were to declare, as part of his opposition to a white president’s policies, that he was ready to “suit up, get my gun, go to Washington, and do what they trained me to do.” This is, after all, what Pastor Stan Craig said recently at a Tea Party rally in Greenville, South Carolina.

Imagine a black radio talk show host gleefully predicting a revolution by people of color if the government continues to be dominated by the rich white men who have been “destroying” the country, or if said radio personality were to call Christians or Jews non-humans, or say that when it came to conservatives, the best solution would be to “hang ‘em high.” And what would happen to any congressional representative who praised that commentator for “speaking common sense” and likened his hate talk to “American values?” After all, those are among the things said by radio host and best-selling author Michael Savage, predicting white revolution in the face of multiculturalism, or said by Savage about Muslims and liberals, respectively. And it was Congressman Culbertson, from Texas, who praised Savage in that way, despite his hateful rhetoric.

Imagine a black political commentator suggesting that the only thing the guy who flew his plane into the Austin, Texas IRS building did wrong was not blowing up Fox News instead. This is, after all, what Anne Coulter said about Tim McVeigh, when she noted that his only mistake was not blowing up the New York Times.

Imagine that a popular black liberal website posted comments about the daughter of a white president, calling her “typical redneck trash,” or a “whore” whose mother entertains her by “making monkey sounds.” After all that’s comparable to what conservatives posted about Malia Obama on freerepublic.com last year, when they referred to her as “ghetto trash.”

Imagine that black protesters at a large political rally were walking around with signs calling for the lynching of their congressional enemies. Because that’s what white conservatives did last year, in reference to Democratic party leaders in Congress.

In other words, imagine that even one-third of the anger and vitriol currently being hurled at President Obama, by folks who are almost exclusively white, were being aimed, instead, at a white president, by people of color. How many whites viewing the anger, the hatred, the contempt for that white president would then wax eloquent about free speech, and the glories of democracy? And how many would be calling for further crackdowns on thuggish behavior, and investigations into the radical agendas of those same people of color?

To ask any of these questions is to answer them. Protest is only seen as fundamentally American when those who have long had the luxury of seeing themselves as prototypically American engage in it. When the dangerous and dark “other” does so, however, it isn’t viewed as normal or natural, let alone patriotic. Which is why Rush Limbaugh could say, this past week, that the Tea Parties are the first time since the Civil War that ordinary, common Americans stood up for their rights: a statement that erases the normalcy and “American-ness” of blacks in the civil rights struggle, not to mention women in the fight for suffrage and equality, working people in the fight for better working conditions, and LGBT folks as they struggle to be treated as full and equal human beings.

And this, my friends, is what white privilege is all about. The ability to threaten others, to engage in violent and incendiary rhetoric without consequence, to be viewed as patriotic and normal no matter what you do, and never to be feared and despised as people of color would be, if they tried to get away with half the shit we do, on a daily basis.

Game Over.




Tim Wise is among the most prominent anti-racist writers and activists in the U.S. Wise has spoken in 48 states, on over 400 college campuses, and to community groups around the nation. Wise has provided anti-racism training to teachers nationwide, and has trained physicians and medical industry professionals on how to combat racial inequities in health care. His latest book is called Between Barack and a Hard Place.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

SOLDIERS PROTEST AGAIN AT WHITE HOUSE



On Tuesday afternoon, Lt. Dan Choi, with Captain Jim Pietrangelo and four other uniformed members of the military, engaged in a new protest by handcuffing themselves to the White House fence. After a brief time, all six were arrested by capitol police and are now being held at the Anacostia police station. This was the second arrest for Choi and Pietrangelo, who chained themselves to the same fence last month during an HRC rally.

Before a group of reporters, Choi challenged President Obama to submit “don’t ask, don’t tell” repeal language to Congress for inclusion in the defense authorization bill, which is now before the the Armed Services Committees of both the House and Senate. “We call on our commander in chief, the president of the United States to take bold action, to show firm resolve and real leadership on his promise to repeal 'don’t ask, don’t tell. To make good on that promise, he has an opportunity to transmit to Congress for the defense authorization bill repeal language.”

When a reporter asked, “Do you feel the president has let you down on this issue?” Choi fell silent and remained silent for the rest of the action.

The group also included Petty Officer Autumn Sandeen, Cpl. Evelyn Thomas, Cadet Mara Boyd, and Petty Officer Larry Whitt.

Robin McGeehee, co-founder of the new activist group GetEQUAL, worked the crowd with a blowhorn while other members held a banner demanded the repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell."

Meanwhile, police worked hard to squash any coverage of the protest, closing the area entirely and forcing both reporters and public back as far as two blocks. Reporter Brian Hinkley was one the scene. Listen to his cell phone conversation during this taped coverage:

NEW BOARD MEMBERS AT LEATHER ARCHIVES



Leather Archives Seats Two New Board Members



CHICAGO, IL - April 20, 2010 - The Leather Archives & Museum announces that two individuals have been seated on its Board of Directors. Ms. Catherine Gross of New Jersey and Sarah Humble of Colorado were ratified by the Voting Membership of the museum on April 16th, 2010.

Catherine is an educator and a PCC certified life success coach. She offers classes and focused weekend seminars on a wide variety of subjects. She's logged 4000+ education hours teaching Servant's Retreat alone. She has served on both local and national boards, judged contests, staffed conferences in a variety of positions, and emceed and produced events/fundraisers. She is currently the co-producer of SouthEast LeatherFest in Atlanta, GA, a board member of Community Academic Consortium for Research on Alternative Sexualities.

Sarah is a co-coordinator for the Women's Leather History Project at the LA&M. She was the 1994 American Leatherwoman. She has won three Pantheon of Leather Awards including Woman of the Year in 1996, Reader's Choice Award in 1997 and Business of the Year (Play House Studios in Baltimore) with Glenda Rider in 1998. She wrote the Leather Link column in the Baltimore Gay Paper for 5 years and has traveled the leather circuit since the early 90's. She was also a co-founder of FIST (Females Investigating Sexual Terrain) in Baltimore/Washington DC. Sarah now resides in Arvada, Colorado with her partner of 10 years Leigha Fleming and their dogs.



About Leather Archives & Museum
The Leather Archives & Museum is a library, museum and archives pertaining to leather and alternative sexual communities. The geographic collection scope is worldwide and includes all sexual orientations and genders. The library collection contains books, magazines, scholarly publications, films and electronic resources related to the subject matter. The museum collection contains original erotic art and artifacts from alternative sex organizations and individuals. The archival collection contains unpublished papers and records from notable activists, artists, businesses and organizations related to the subject matter. For more information about the LA&M, please visit http://www.leatherarchives.org.


Leather Archives & Museum
Rick Storer
Executive Director
773.761.9200

Thursday, April 15, 2010

NEWS FROM LEATHER ARCHIVES & MUSEUM

What's New at the Leather Archives & Museum
April 15 2010












The Leather Archives & Museum announces the International Mr. Leather Pre-Party and Jeffrey Payne IML 2009 Roast!

The event will be held on Thursday, May 27th at the museum, 6418 N. Greenview Ave. in Chicago, IL. Doors open at 7pm and the Roast will begin at 9pm. The event is free and open to the public, age 18 and older. Reserved priority seating is available for $10 through May 10th, 2010. General seating will be available on a first come first served basis. All proceeds will be used to support the mission of the Leather Archives & Museum

Purchase Priority Seating tickets here

Buy your International Mr. Leather and Cleveland Leather Awareness Weekend Packages...Make Leather History, Support Leather History!




May 28-31, 2010





April 22-25, 2010


RESTRAINT: The Closing Party!

Stop into the LA&M
for your last opportunity to view John Randle's gorgeous
paintings.
CLOSING PARTY:
April 17, 2010
6:00-9:00PM


For a $10 admission, you can partake in a light buffet and witness bondage demos given by the Windy City Bondage Club. All admission proceeds and a portion of all painting sales go to the LA&M.


BONDAGE AND BURLESQUE!
April 30, 2010

Come and celebrate the Art of the Tease as we kick
off Leon
Grossman's
exhibit at the G.A.G.
Gallery!
Time: 7-11PM
Friday, April 30
Admission: $10


Leon Grossman's erotic art photography is being featured in his first one-man show at the G.A.G Gallery at the Leather Archives & Museum beginning April 30, 2010 and running through July. Leon's work features many local performance artists and reflects his skill at rope craft and turning bondage into beauty.



Opening night: April 30th from 7pm to 11pm there will be a gala with burlesque & bondage performers to celebrate the art in the photography turned to life.The main performance begins at 9pm.Tickets for the cash bar will be available to those 21 years and older.


LA&M Membership
More important than ever!

The LA&M is a community supported resource. Most public funding and major corporate sponsorship is closed to us.

We understand times are tight .. we understand that the economy is unstable. This is a perfect time to sign up for a monthly donation plan. Rather than making a lump sum donation now, contribute a small amount every month. If your financial circumstances change, you can discontinue this donation at any time.

Visit our online donation center for more information.

The Leather Archives & Museum / International Mr. Leather Raffle!

This year's winner will receive 2 IML Bronze Packages and accommodations for Friday, Saturday and Sunday night May 27-29, 2011 at the IML Host Hotel!

The Bronze level package includes general admission event tickets to Opening Ceremonies, Pecs and Personality and the International Mr. Leather Contest. You also get tickets for entry into the Victory Celebration and Black & Blue dance parties. A transportation pass allowing use of the IML transportation system is also included. Access to the vendor market for the entire weekend comes included. With this package you also receive a weekend registration value pack which includes vendor information, valuable discount coupons and special gifts. Tickets will be drawn at the 2010 IML Contest.

Purchase your tickets at the Leather Archives & Museum, the LA&M Booth in the IML Leather Market or online




Next stops for the Road Show:
International Ms. Leather 2010


















San Francisco, April 15-18


The Women's Leather History Project is going to International Ms Leather!

From Thursday, April 15 to Sunday, April 18 the Women's Leather History
Project will be in San Francisco, CA for International Ms Leather.

The Leather Archives & Museum (LA&M)
launched a new project on January 1, 2010 to collect, preserve and exhibit
women's leather history. The Women's Leather History Project!
Collections from women have already started making their way to the vaults
and exhibits of the LA&M including:
- Personal papers from Vi Johnson
- Books and fetish wear from Kat Sunlove
- Memorabilia from Jan Lyon

We need your help!

In addition to your financial support of the project, here's what you can
send to the LA&M to be a part:
- Papers
- Video recorded interviews
- Personal histories-oral, film, and written
- Art and visual resources
- Media-books, magazines, films, and digital media
- Artifacts - organizational and personal


This weekend we are launching limited edition Women's Project LA&M pins!

Less than 250 were made and they will be made available here, for the
first time at $25.00 each. Please stop by the Women's exhibit LA&M table
this weekend and pick one up.

We'll be doing short "woman on the street" interviews. If you have things
you want sent or preserved by the museum, or just want more info about the
project stop by!

We women are the story tellers, the keepers of memory. We are responsible for
collecting, preserving and honoring our own histories. No one will do it
for us.
Please join us and support the WLHP!

We look forward to seeing you at IMsL 2010!

Sarah Humble and Leigha Fleming




Leather History could use your hands, your heart and your time.








2 to 4 hours once a week or every other week can make a huge difference in keeping our history safe and accessible. Whether you call Chicago, San Francisco, New York or somewhere in-between home, the gift of your time can have an impact.

See our volunteer page for more information and to get involved today.






6418 N Greenview
Chicago, Illinois 60626

The Museum is open to visitors & researchers on:

Thursday from 11am - 7pm
Friday from 11am - 7pm
Saturday from 11am - 5pm
Sunday from 11am - 5pm





Save 50%
off
Admission! Visiting the LA&M soon?
Do you recommend others visit the LA&M?
The LA&M introduces an online coupon to save half off your admission.



Visit the LA&M website to download this valuable coupon

Monday, April 12, 2010

KC PIONEERS CELEBRATE 35 YEARS!




For Immediate Release:

KC Pioneers will celebrate their 35th Anniversary with two nights of celebration including dinner, grants for the community, and a pub crawl. We invite all community members to our celebration and look forward to seeing old friends and making new ones.

The KC Pioneers support the leather community and local organizations that assist those among us in need. Five organizations have been awarded $500 each: Passages, KC Anti-Violence Project, Southwest Boulevard Family Health Clinic, KC Free Health Clinic, and the Women’s Leather History Project of the Leather Archives and Museum.

Everyone is invited to a dinner upstairs at Missie B’s on Friday night, April 30th at 7 pm. Pioneers are cooking for you, no cost, donations appreciated. Please RSVP by Wednesday, April 28th to KCRedNorse@hotmail.com so we can make plenty of food!

At 9:30 pm Friday we will move downstairs to the main stage. We will have an acknowledgement of the many years the Pioneers have been active in KC and present checks to this year’s grant recipients. Representatives will be on hand to give info about their organizations. Stay for the show at 10!

Saturday night, May 1st, be a part of the notorious Pioneers’ Pub Crawl. We will start at Missie B’s, leaving at 8pm. Tickets are only $15! Stay tuned for a list of the bars we will visit.

The KC Pioneers wish to express their appreciation to our home bar, Missie B’s, to Michael Burns and staff, for the fundraising opportunities that allow us to give grants and fund regional leather gatherings. We appreciate their long-time support and friendship.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

CHEATERS AND HOMOS AND ...VOYEURS! OH MY!

Just when you think the long-running soap opera called the Republican Party can't get any steamier -- or any sillier -- they surprise us with another new chapter. Louisiana senators and prostitutes; Georgia governors and Latin mistresses; toe-tapping Nevada senators and closeted California state representatives caught with their pants down -- how could they possibly top all that?



With a donors' night out at an upscale West Hollywood sex club, that's how, and by dropping $1,950 on ... well, that's for tomorrow's episode, I guess. It's a wonderfully delicious scandal, funnier than hell given the players. So far, Allison Meyers, the director of Young Eagles, a Republican fund-raising organization aimed at under-45 donors, has been fired. No less an expert than Karl Rove has called her a "pervert," and he should know. Another Republican operative, Eric Brown, finds himself unexpectedly stuck with the bill after the Republican party, which at first reimbursed him for the expense, demanded the money back.

But the funniest part of the entire matter is how the media seems determined to sanitize the event. VOYEURS has been referred to in the press as a "lesbian stripper club" that features "pretend bondage sex acts." Well, maybe. Uh-huh. Lesbians, of course, are safe and a lot more acceptable in Republican society, at least as long as they're hot and gorgeous, right? Every red-blooded Republican male (and no doubt a few Republican females) likes to watch Lesbians "simulating" sex acts.

But that's not all VOYEURS is. What the media doesn't seem to want to talk about, and what the Republicans would prefer you didn't know is this:



VOYEURS is also one hell of a hot gay club. With hot gay men. Hot gay men who simulate sex. In leather and bondage. With a hot gay clientele that likes to watch. Hell, it's in West Hollywood, after all!



Now, the only real question remaining is exactly how "about a dozen" Young Eagle Republican donors managed to drop nearly $2,000 at a bondage club. How many dollar bills can you stuff into an upscale g-string? Just what is the going rate for a lap-dance these days (no fingering, please)? Okay, okay, maybe there's one more question: WTF?



The manager of VOYEUR, by the way, is offended by all the attention and claims the club has been defamed. "We are definitely not a strip club," she says. We cater to an A-list clientele." Well, hey, I guess that makes all the difference. But then, she did let in all those Republicans....

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

SCOTT BROWN VS. RACHEL MADDOW

Senator Naked, who sometimes goes by the name of Scott Brown, has sent out a fundraising letter claiming that Massachusetts democrats have enlisted MSNBC talk show host Rachel Maddow to run against him next year. Maddow, on her show for two nights now, has declared this a complete fantasy on Brown's part.

Senator Naked, you might remember, is the former COSMO centerfold model who kind of accidentally won Senator Ted Kennedy's seat when Kennedy passed away. He campaigned on the boast that he would be the 41st vote that "killed Obamacare dead." Guess that didn't work so well for him.

We do have one helpful suggestion for Scott Brown, however. If he really needs to raise money, why doesn't he just uncross his legs?

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

FROM GLEE! -- TOO FUNNY EP OF "SUE'S CORNER"

If you're a fan of the television show, GLEE! -- and it seems like just about everybody is -- you'll love this unaired segment of "Sue's Corner," featuring openly lesbian actress Jane Lynch as Sue Sylvester, the girls' gym coach who hates, well, everybdoy. This video is hysterical. Enjoy!

Monday, March 22, 2010

AND NOW FOR MY NEXT TRICK...!


THE AMAZING RANDI COMES OUT AT 82!

World-renowned stage magician James Randi, known for years by his stage name, "The Amazing Randi," made an amazing announcement this week. Although he says friends and family have known for years, at the magical age of 82 Randi has decided to come out publicly. One of the leaders of the modern skeptical movement and a popular debunker of pseudo-science, posted the following message on his webside:

"Well, here goes. I really resent the term, but I use it because it’s recognized and accepted.

"I’m gay.

"From some seventy years of personal experience, I can tell you that there’s not much “gay” about being homosexual. For the first twenty years of my life, I had to live in the shadows, in a culture that was — at least outwardly — totally hostile to any hint of that variation of life-style. At no time did I choose to adopt any protective coloration, though; my cultivation of an abundant beard was not at all a deception, but part of my costume as a conjuror.

"Gradually, the general attitude that I’d perceived around me began to change, and presently I find that there has emerged a distinctly healthy acceptance of different social styles of living — except, of course, in cultures that live in constant and abject fear of divine retribution for infractions found in the various Holy Books… In another two decades, I’m confident that young people will find themselves in a vastly improved atmosphere of acceptance.

"Before publishing this statement, I chose to privately notify a number of my closest friends and colleagues — none of whom, I’m sure, have been at all surprised at this “coming out.” I’m prepared to receive the inevitable barrage of jeers and insults from the “grubbies” out there who will jump to their keyboards in glee to notify others of their kind about this statement, which to them will be yet further proof of the perfidy of the rationalist mode of life that I have chosen. Those titters of joy will be unheard over the murmur of acceptance that I confidently expect from my friends.

"This declaration of mine was prompted just last week by seeing an excellent film — starring Sean Penn — that told the story of politician Harvey Milk, the first openly gay man to be elected to public office in California. I’m in excellent company: Barney Frank, Oscar Wilde, Stephen Fry, Ellen DeGeneris, Rachel Maddow, are just a few of those who were in my thoughts as I pressed the key that placed this on Swift and before the whole world…

"I should apologize for having used Swift as the venue to publish this note, an item that is hardly the focus of what we promote and publish here, but I chose the single most public asset I have to make this statement. It’s from here that I have attacked irrationality, stupidity, and irresponsibility, and it is my broadest platform. Here is where I have chosen to stand and fight.

"And I think that I have already won this battle by simply publishing this statement.

"Note: To hear an extensive discussion of this issue, please listen to my appearance on For Good Reason."

Book 'em, Dano!


CHRISTOPHER STREET BOOKSTORE BUSTED, CHARGED WITH PIRACY

Gay Porn Times is reporting that last week NYC police raided the B&B Bookstore on Christopher Street. Now raiding gay bookstores is hardly newsworthy anymore, but this time the cause was not sticky floors and backroom hanky-panky. Bookstore owners, instead, are charged with selling unauthorized duplicates of pornographic DVDS and violating the copyrights of specific porn producers.

Pitbull Productions, those wonderfully fun guys who brought us such cinematic fin de circle jerque fare as "Breed It Raw," volumes 1 through 4, not to mention the unforgetablly titled "Booty Juice Whores," lodged the complaint and are suing on intellectual property grounds. That idea, in itself, constituted my chuckle-of-the-day. Intellectual? "Booty Juice Whores?" Whoa!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

NLA Literary Award Finalists for 2010

FROM THE OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE:

FINALISTS ANNOUNCED FOR NLA-I WRITING AWARDS

(Columbus, OH) — National Leather Association: International (NLA-I), a leading organization for activists in the pansexual SM/leather/fetish community, announced today the finalists for its recently created writing awards. Named after activists and writers Geoff Mains, John Preston, Pauline Reage, Cynthia Slater, and the organization Samois, they are awarded annually to recognize excellence in writing and publishing about leather, SM, bondage and fetishes.

The finalists for the Cynthia Slater Non-fiction Article Award are:

Gloria Brame, “Transformation and Transcendence in BDSM,” which appeared in Filthy Gorgeous Things, July 2009, “Force” issue. Available at: http://filthygorgeousthings.com/

E.R. Chaline, “Contemporary Gay BDSM in the UK,” which appeared in Skin Two (2009).

Jeff Mann, “How to be a Country Leather Bear,” from Richard Labonté and Lawrence Schimel (eds.), Second Person Queer: Who You Are (So Far). (Arsenal Pulp Press).

Jack Rinella, “Juggling,” which appeared in LeatherViews

Sarah Sloane, “The Biochemistry of BDSM,” which appeared in Sexis. Available at: http://www.edenfantasys.com/sexis/sex/bdsm-biochemistry-110492/

The finalists for the Geoff Mains Non-fiction Book Award are:

Lee Harrington, Sacred Kink: The Eightfold Paths of BDSM and Beyond (lulu.com)

david stein, Ask the Man Who Owns Him: The Real Lives of Gay Masters and slaves (Perfectbound Press)

Two Knotty Boys, Two Knotty Boys Back on the Ropes (Green Candy)

The finalists for the Pauline Reage Novel Award are:

Melinda Barron, Graceful Submission (Loose Id)

James, Buchanan, Hard Fall (MLR Press)

Alex Ironrod, Obsession (Nazca Plains)

Claire Thompson, Submission Times Two (Romance Unbound)

The finalists for the John Preston Short Fiction Award are:

Kieran Wyn DeWhurst, “The Last Mistress of the Chatelaine,” in Cecilia Tan and Sarah Desautels (eds.), Like a Thorn: An Anthology of BDSM Fairy Tales (Circlet Press)

Jack Fritscher, “Goodbye Saigon,” in Phillip Mackenzie, Jr. (ed.), Special Forces: Gay Military Erotica (Cleis Press)

Shanna Germain, “Second Skin,” in Cecilia Tan and Sarah Desautels (eds.), Like a Thorn: An Anthology of BDSM Fairy Tales (Circlet Press)

Jeff Mann, “Lost River,” in Richard Labonté (ed.), Daddies: Gay Erotic Stories (Cleis Press)

Xan West, “Missing Daddy,” in Richard Labonté (ed.), Daddies: Gay Erotic Stories (Cleis Press)

The finalists for the Samois Anthology Award are:

Cecilia Tan and Sarah Desautels (eds.), Like a Thorn: An Anthology of BDSM Fairy Tales (Circlet Press)

Rachel Kramer Bussel (ed.), Bottoms Up: Spanking Good Stories (Cleis Press)

The winners will be announced at the NLA-I’s Annual General Meeting, which will be held during Tribal Fire in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma (April 30 – May 2 2010). Please contact the award committee chair, Steve Vakesh, for more information about the awards at stevevakesh@gmail.com. For more information about Tribal Fire, the National Leather Association, and the NLA-I’s meeting on Sunday morning, see: http://www.tribalfireokc.com/ and http://www.nla-i.com


================================

I'll attempt, mostly unsuccessfully, to hide my own sour grapes. My story "Descenso," which appeared in the anthology, DON JUAN AND MEN, had been nominated for the Preston Award by publisher MLR Books. I'm grateful to the publisher for their support and for believing in the story.

Friday, March 19, 2010

DAN CHOI - WE WILL NOT GO AWAY

After being held overnight in jail, Lt. Dan Choi and Capt. Jim Pietrangelo pleaded entered not guilty pleas in federal court today. Afterward, Choi issued a stirring statement to cameras on the court house steps. "We're going to do it again," he said. "This is a clear message to Obama and other leaders -- We're not going away."

Choi also appeared to take a slam at the Human Rights Campaign when he stated that our freedom would not be won with donations or token or cocktail parties.


GET EQUAL -- VIDEO CALL TO ACTION!

Robin McGeehee, co-founder of the new action group, GET EQUAL, released a video statement yesterday following her arrest at the White House during a widely publicized "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" protest. Veteran U.S. military officers Lt. Dan Choi and Capt. Jim Pietrangelo were also arrested at that protest after chaining themselves to the White House fence.

On the same afternoon, Get Equal protesters also staged sit-ins at the D.C and San Frnacisco offices of Nancy Pelosi, demanding that ENDA, the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, be brought to the House floor after languishing in committee for more than a year. The sit-ins resulted in four arrests at the D.C. offices and six arrests at the San Francisco offices.

Get Equal promises more civil disobedience and direct action in the future. Here is Robin McGeehee's video statement:



To learn more about GET EQUAL, visit their website at www.getequal.org.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

GAY HEROES ARRESTED AT WHITE HOUSE!




LT. DAN CHOI AND CAPT. JIM PIETRANGELO CHAIN THEMSELVES TO WHITE HOUSE FENCE!

Earlier today, Lt. Dan Choi hijacked a Human Rights Campaign event featuring Kathy Griffin. The HRC event, billed as a Rally Against DADT, was scheduled to follow today's congressional hearings on the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy. Robin McGeehee, of the group "Get Equal," asked HRC president Joe Salmonese if Lt. Choi could also speak. Reportedly, Salmonese rebuffed McGeehee, telling her that "this is Kathy's rally." Kathy Griffin was there to film an episode of ther television show, LIFE ON THE D-LIST.

But as Griffin concluded her usual stand-up act, Dan Choi took the stage anyway, declaring, "DADT is not a joke!" He then read the following statement.

“Hello. My name is Lt. Dan Choi. I am being discharged from the US Army because I am gay and dared to say it out loud.

Today, I am here on a mission with Capt. Jim Pietrangelo, and we are asking you all to join us. We’re calling you to action because we are at a turning point — a moment in time where talk is no longer enough, and action is required.

Equality is not going to happen by itself.

You have been told that the President has a plan. But Congressman Barney Frank confirmed to us this week that the President still is not fully committed to repealing Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell this year.

And if we don’t seize this moment it may not happen for a very long time.

Some may tell you that I am one of the lucky ones. I have been welcomed back by my unit with open arms. And it would be easy for me to stay quiet and hope that change will happen.

But what I was taught at West Point and learned in war is — hope is not a strategy. As officers, James and I both find it a dereliction of our moral duty to remain silent while thousands of our brothers and sister are not allowed to serve openly and honestly.

Capt. Pietrangelo was honorably discharged under Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell in 2004 and I will be subject to the same shortly. As officers we are here today fighting for those in the ranks, and we need our Commander in Chief to do the same.

Our fight is not here at Freedom Plaza, it is at the White House. We are walking to the White House right now to send the President a message. So…take out your cell phones and your cameras. Document this moment. Join us as together — we make history.”





Choi and Pietrangelo then led hundred down the street to the White House where he and Pietrangelo chained themselves to the White House fence while rotesters chanted, "Hey hey! Hi ho! DADT has got to go!" As many as twenty secret service police immediately taped off the area with yellow tape while Choi and Pietrangelo stood crucified upon the fence. Robin McGeehee was arrested on a charge of "disorderly conduct" for helping the two soldiers handcuff themselves. Protesters were told by secret service police to disperse, that if they remained on the sidewalk before the White House they would be arrested, also.




Neither Joe Salmonese or Kathi Griffin followed the crowd to the White House and were nowhere to be seen at the rally.



CNN reporter Rick Sanchez discussed the protest and the soldiers' arrest on his "Talk Back" television program, also. Here is the CNN footage:

Saturday, March 13, 2010

THE ONLY RESPONSE TO FRED PHELPS - PARTAY!

I just found this Youtube video from February 23rd. It documents the counter-protest that resulted when Fred Phelps and his Westboro Baptist Clown Posse showed up in Long Beach, California outside the Wilson convention hall. The video is wonderful -and- wonderfully funny.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

EAGLE DEFENDANTS NOT GUILTY!



LATE BREAKING NEWS!

Four defendants arrested in the September 10 police raid on the Atlanta Eagle bar were found not guilty late Thursday afternoon, and charges were dropped against four other defendants.

The prosecution argued Thursday that the club was illegally operating as an adult entertainment establishment. Four dancers were arrested, and four bar employees, including the bartender and doorman, were also arrested for not having a proper adult-entertainment business license. But on Thursday, the judge dropped those charges.

Defense attorney Alan Begner argued, "The evidence and the truth is that Atlanta Eagle is not an adult establishment, so it is not covered by this section of the code."

Police arrested eight people at the bar, four employees and four dancers. Police told CBS Atlanta News they raided the place after several neighbors complained about illegal activity in and around the club, especially on Thursday nights, when the club was known to have an "underwear night."

In opening statements, Larry Gardner, the prosecutor, said, "The dancers were dancing in the nude." Eagle owners and patrons denied that, and Municipal Judge Crystal Gaines said city police failed to produce evidence proving that men danced naked without permits or that the bar operators were running an unlicensed adult establishment.

A civil rights lawsuit has since been filed in federal court against the city and the Atlanta police department. The police department is also conducting its own investigation into the events and the behavior of the eighteen officers involved in the raid.

"We always thought from the beginning that we were charged for no reason," bar co-owner Richard Ramey, who was not a defendant, said after the decision. "They had no right to be there."

One of the dancers, Antonio Benitez, still faces a bench warrant for failure to appear in court.