Jason Howard Green

Jason Howard Green

Saturday, June 28, 2008

YOU SHOULD BE WATCHING . . .

NOAH’S ARC SNEAK PEAK

I’m so excited I could just spit. LOGO just dropped the first teaser from the upcoming Noah’s Arc movie. The gang is back together for the big screen. And it has been confirmed; Jensen Atwood will be back playing the part of Wade. There has been rumor floating around that with Wade now on the new season of Dante’s Cove, he wouldn’t be able to do the movie. It was reported that Shemar Moore may be playing the part.

Don’t get it twisted, I do love me some more Shemar, but only Jensen can play Wade. It would not have worked without him. So I’m glad to see that the movie will include him.

RUPAULS DRAG RACE
The race is on and Ru is determined to find the fiercest drag queen in the country. The show will air on LOGO and the contestants are coming in droves.

Check out some of the contestants at . . .
http://rupaulsdragrace.logoonline.com/


DANTE’S COVE SEASON 3

The third season of the Here Network’s hit show Dante’s Cove is now available on DVD. I have to promote this season because this is the season where Jensen Atwood joined the cast. Atwood (with his fine ass) is the reason I will be purchasing this show.


DOCUMENTARY WHEN I KNEW
Last week Cinemax premiered this documentary that allowed sixteen different individuals to tell their stories as to when and how they realized they were homosexual. Thanks to the producers of this doc for including the stories of African-Americans.

When I Knew is airing exclusively on Cinemax.


AL SHARPTON OUTS ANDERSON COOPER?

In a discussion about Barack Obama on Anderson Cooper's 360, Al Sharpton defends his stand in favor of gay rights, even though he believes this is against Gods will. Anderson Cooper has repeatedly been accused of being homosexual though he has never confirmed nor denied it.

When Sharpton turns to Cooper and states "I might believe what you're doing will put you in hell, but I'll defend your right to go there," many have claimed they think he was trying to out Anderson Cooper. He later came back to say (after this accusation started to surface) that his comment to Anderson Cooper was a general one and he was making no reference to his sexual orientation.

After reviewing the clip. I'm still under the opinion that he was NOT referring to Anderson's orientation. I don't even think he was referring to Anderson negatively. I think this was a general statement. But it wouldn't be interesting unless people decided to make a mountain out of a molehill.



MATT DAMON PUTS ON WEIGHT FOR NEW ROLE

Matt is currently shooting his new movie The Informant in Hawaii. The sexiest man alive has put on a few pounds for this role. So what do you think - still sexy?


J. L. KING IS STILL AT IT
The king of the D.L., J.L. King, is back on the scene again with his new DVD The Ten Signs of Down Low Behavior and More. I'll admit it I'll probably be buying this. That's not an admission that I believe there is some important or even relevent information contained on the DVD. I also bought How To Tell if Your Man is Gay or Bisexual by Shahrazad Ali. I knew there would be no information of value, but I did want to read the absurd characteristics listed that women should be looking for. This is the same reason I'll probably pick up this DVD.


Don't get it twisted. I know the downlow is very real and I know the consequences to women that are unwilling participants in these relationships are drastic (sometimes fatal). But I have so many issues with the phenomena. 1) I'm so sick of the fact that when you mention the DL images of black men spring to mind. Men of all colors are on the down low. We really need to stop putting just black men in this negative light. 2) Believing that there are "signs" you can look for to determine if your man is on the downlow is just down right stupid. It just can't be done. There are no sure fire signs out there.


LOCAL NEWS

PICK UP THE ARIZONA INFORMANT
If you didn’t know I’ve been active in the fight against HIV/AIDS for several years now. I worked as an outreach worker for TRIBE – AIDS Project Arizona’s African American HIV outreach program. Volunteered with the Body Positive Man2Man Project and attend the Body Positive Men of Color support group. I’ve also always captained my company’s AIDS Walk team.

When I learned that AZ was generating a Black AIDS Task Force to address the disproportionate infection rates among African Americans I didn’t hesitate to get on board.

Last week I received a call from the coordinator of the task force asking if I would be willing to write an article for the Arizona Informant. With June being HIV testing month and with there being a need to test as many African-Americans as possible, the Arizona Informant was the perfect paper to get our message to the masses.

Please pick up the latest copy of the Arizona Informant and review my article. Give me feedback to let me know what you think.


FLAGSTAFF PRIDE ENDS WITH GAY BASHING
Flagstaff’s festive pride celebration that brought hundreds of LGBT people to northern Arizona ended on a sad and discouraging note. Two men were hospitalized after four attackers beat them.

The most severely injured individual, Michael Brown, received a punch that knocked him unconscious. He was kept overnight in the hospital and sent home on Monday morning.

Four men were arrested and are being held on charges that include assault, aggravated assault, and disorderly conduct. Hate crime charges may also be added to the list. The four suspects include Travis Reiner, 24, of Flagstaff; Christopher Rose, 26, of Englewood, Colo.; Michael Van Roteyn, 24, of Flagstaff; and Mark Greinke, 25, of Sun City.

Barbara McCullough-Jones, Equality Arizona's executive director, made the following statement:

"The news of this attack is deeply disturbing. On a day when all of Flagstaff should have been celebrating and embracing diversity, this brutal attack has reminded us all that there is still much work to be done to prevent anti-gay bias from escalating into violence."



WAY TO GO ECHO MAGAZINE
The feature article on the current Echo magazine is titled Changing Faces. The subtitle – It’s Time To Reignite the Conversation About HIV/AIDS. The article addresses the communities where we are seeing an increase in infection rates : those over 50, those under 25, and minority communities.

The four individuals featured on the cover all share their stories in this edition of Echo. John Zielinski is 58. Billy Chamberlain is 25. Patsy Steen and Cookie King are both African-American. Please pick up this magazine to learn more about these remarkable people and find out how their lives have been affected by this virus.




AMERICAN IDOL COMING TO PHOENIX
Just announced, for the 8th season of American Idol, auditions will be happening at our local jobing.com arena in Glendale on July 25. So all diva, wanna be divas, real balladeers and those that think they have talent, good luck to you if you're brave enough to endure the tirades of Simon, Paula and Randy. Or should I say good luck to those brave enough the endure the heat of the desert sun in the midst of this record setting scorcher of a summer were having.
Though I mock those crazy enuff to go to the auditions, ya'll know I still love the show. I may go out just to cover the event for The J Spot.

NATIONAL NEWS

TRANS WOMAN BEATEN BY COPS
Duanna Johnson was arrested on prostitution charges. She was handcuffed and taken to the Memphis police station for arraignment. While in a holding station the officer that was processing her called her several offensive names then ordered to walk over to him for fingerprinting.

Duanna didn’t respond. So the officer called her more offensive names and then repeated his demands. Ms. Duanna still remained in her chair. She said that if the officer couldn’t address her by her name she had no reason to move. The officer then attacked the handcuffed Duanna and beat her down. The beating was caught on camera.

I’m happy to report that as of last week both officers involved in this incident have been fired. Duanna has now announced that she is filing a civil lawsuit against the city of Memphis. She will settle for $1.3 million.

Go head girl. I think she deserves every penny. And for the officers involved, I know they’ve been fired, but I want to go on the record to say that that isn’t enough. What they did was hate filled and there should be charges filed against them.



MICHELLE OBAMA SPEAKS TO GAY LEADERSHIP
Last week Michelle Obama spoke for about twenty minutes to the Democratic National Committee’s Gay and Lesbian Leadership Council. In her speech she talked about her husbands support of LGBT rights, how he opposes DOMA (the defense of marriage act), and how he would like to repeal the Don’t Ask Don’t Tell policy of the military.

She also shared with those in attendance how her husband worked in the state of Illinois to amend their Human Rights Act to include sexual orientation and gender identity.




MARION BARRY SUPPORTS GAY MARRIAGE
At a meeting at the Gertrude Stein Democratic Club, Washington DC’s largest gay political group, Marion Barry announced he would support a bill legalizing same sex marriage if such legislation were introduced. This announcement on June 16, was the first time Barry gave his position on this issue.

I’m still not sure about how I feel about this endorsement from the former mayor now city council member. I’m not a huge fan of Barry. I don’t have a dislike of Barry. But I feel any mayor (who should be a positive image for our youth) who chooses to fill his political career with drug abuse and prostitute chasing probably is someone who shouldn’t still be in the public eye.

I guess any support should be welcomed. And as a council member Barry he is still in a position to do positive things for our community in DC. Let’s see if he delivers on his promise.

CONGRESS HOLDS HEARING ON TRANS ISSUES
This first congressional hearing to address the increasing needs of the trans community was held last Thursday. Rep. Robert Andrews chaired the meeting held by the House Education and Labor Subcommittee on Health, Employment, Labor and Pensions.

The meeting is the result of increased incidents of transgender workplace visibility, hostility and discrimination. Rea Carey, executive director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Action Fund says this meeting was a long time coming. “For far too long, transgender people have lived with the fear of losing their job simply because of who they are. Today’s hearing marks a critical step in addressing this travesty once and for all.”
I’m loving the fact that Congress is doing something to address the needs of this community following the devastating non-inclusion of the trans community in ENDA.

INTERNATIONAL NEWS

NELSON MANDELA TURNS 90
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Probably on the top of my list as the greatest living mentor, role model, amazing human being, Nelson Mandela was honored for turning 90 at an event that can be labeled only as one for royalty.

Hosted by Will Smith, some of those in attendance of the concert/ birthday party included Amy Winehouse, Josh Groban, The Soweto Gospel Choir, and Spice Girl Geri Halliwell. Mandela hoped the attendance would equal 46,664 – a reference to the number he wore during the 27 years of imprisonment he endured in his fight against Apartheid.

46664 is now the name of the AIDS foundation Mandela has started. Proceeds from the birthday event will go towards this organization.

NIGERIAN LEADER CONTINUES ANTI-GAY TIRADE
Peter Akinola, leader of the Anglican Church in Nigeria, has spewed anti-gay rhetoric throughout his career. His comments this week at the Global Anglican Future Conference stating that he thinks the church is too lenient on homosexuality comes as no surprise. These comments just show us that his ignorance has sustained.

My heart does go out to those citizens of Nigeria that continue to live in an atmosphere where he is allowed to spread his message of blissful ignorance and I’d even say hatred.

HIV RATES DECLING IN SOUTH AFRICA
Earlier this month, South Africa’s health minister announced that for the second consecutive year HIV rates among pregnant women have declined. Manto Tshabalala-Msimang announced that in 2007 only 28% of women screened at prenatal clinics had the HIV virus (down from 29.2% the previous year).

In reviewing the larger population, overall 37.9% of women in South African are living with the HIV. This number is also down from the previous years number of 38.7%. This is a reflection of an overall trend in a decrease in infection rates.

Health Minister Msimang believes that the decrease could be the result of intensive prevention campaigns. However some experts believe that the decrease could be the result of a natural leveling off of the epidemic as infected people die.

MOST JAMAICANS OPPOSTE LGBT RIGHTS
What a surprise this is not. A poll this month in Jamaica found that 70% of Jamaicans are opposed to any type of civil rights for the LGBT community. According to the publication the Jamaican Gleaner, women are a bit more receptive to the plight of gays and lesbians in the country, but it goes on to state that the chance of overturning the country’s anti-gay laws are very low.

The Gleaner does place much of the blame for the continued homophobic behavior on Jamaican musicians. Gays bashings are common and there has been a recent increase in the frequency of this violence. The Gleaner states that many participating in the violence are carrying out lyrics they hear by Reggae and dancehall artists.

BOOK NEWS: GAY AND LESBIAN NOVELS

E LYNN HARRIS: JUST TO GOOD TO BE TRUE
With countless books he’s released (this is number of fityleven or umpteen – I loose track) E Lynn Harris has not disappointed me yet. Well, the only disappointment I’ve ever claimed was maybe a book was too short and I wanted more of it. Now Harris is back again with another complicated and sophisticated cast of characters. In Just To Good To Be True, we meet Brady Bledsoe who is tempted by both hot cheerleaders and shady NFL agents.

I must confess that I haven’t read it yet but it will be the very next novel on my reading list. If there is anybody within the sound of my voice that has not read anything by the greatest author ever E Lynn, please do yourself a favor and go out and pick any number of his books. Trust me, no matter which one you pick up, you will enjoy it. I encourage you to start with Invisible Life (his first book) and just go in order.

FIONNA ZEDDE: HUNGRY FOR IT
Zedde is a native to Jamaica but moved to the U.S. as a preteen. She spent several years in Tampa but now lives with her partner in Atlanta. Hungry For It is her fourth novel.

In Hungry For It we’re introduced to Remi Bouchard. Bouchard is the owner of the hottest jazz club in South Beach. She’s beautiful, successful and used to getting whatever (and whoever) she wants. As she tires of the frivolous one night stand scene, she spots someone she desires at her best friends wedding. This is sure to be a hot and heavy one.

LINDA VILLASORA: PASSING FOR BLACK
Though my love for E Lynn Harris forces me to read him first, the book I’m most looking forward to read this summer is this one. The story of the author should be a novel itself. Linda Villasora was the editor of Essence Magazine that shocked many readers when she wrote a story for the magazine called Coming Out about disclosing her sexuality to her mother.

She has authored several books thus far but this is her first work of fiction. Kensington Books supplies this synopsis of the book:

“Passing for Black” is set in the volatile minefield where race and sexual identity collide. It is a sexy, fast-paced urban novel about Angela Wright, a young black magazine writer who throws her orderly life into chaos when she begins a passionate affair with a woman.And not just any woman: Her undercover lover, Professor Caitlin Getty, is the provocative Humanities Department nemesis of Angela’s fiancĂ©, Keith Redfield, a university professor of African-American studies.
I can’t wait. I’ll fill you in on how it was once I’ve completed it.

SPORTS NEWS: CELEBRATING CHAMPIONS

BOSTON CELTICS NBA CHAMPS :
Congratulations to the Boston Celtics for claiming the title NBA World Champs after defeating the Las Angeles Lakers in the finals. I wish I could say the battle was hard fought, but the Lakers just didn’t have an answer to the Celtics defense. Even the league’s MVP Kobe Bryant seemed frustrated with the ease it took to deny their shots. The Big 3 (Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, and Ray Allen) have often been credited for the victory, but I’ll argue that the contributions of the rest of the team was equally important.

The experience of Sam Cassell, the aggressiveness of Kendrick Perkins, and the hustle of Eddie House were all important in helping make the Celtics the NBA Champs for the first time since 1986. Rajon Rondo was only one steal away from tying the record for most steals in an NBA game.

The games were exciting to watch and I’m happy to see Boston walk away with the name champs.

TIGER WOODS WINS THE US CUP
In a battle that went down to the very end, Tiger Woods has now won his third US Open. He has been away from competing for two months because of a recent knee surgery. In this years open he was questioning whether he had what it took to win this one. But once again he proved that he did.

The match went 18 rounds at the Torrey Pines golf resort and there was no winner. Tiger was tied with Rocco Mediate. As the rounds continued the rules changed. The first golfer to best the other would be declared winner. Tiger managed to pull out ahead by one stroke and claim the win and the title.

MUHAMMAD ALI PARKINSON’S DISEASE ADVANCING
He has been publicly fighting this disease for several years now, but I just heard that the disease has reached such an advanced stated that he can no longer speak. I’m really saddened to hear this. Ali has been a tremendous advocate for this disease since his diagnosis. He is always willing to lend his voice to speak against the cause or lend his celebrity to help with fundraising. I’m wishing him a miraculous recovery.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Myspace Comments - Happy Fathers Day


To all Gay, Bi and Transgendered Dads out there - Happy Father's Day to you.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Favorite TV Dads


With Father's Day just around the corner, I started to think about my favorite TV dads - specifically, my favorite black TV dads. I asked myself who's been my favorite African-American father on the small screen. Oddly enough this wasn't something I could answer easily. The reason I couldn't answer this easily was because I couldn't think of that many. There were only two that immediately popped into my mind.
There is the obvious - Cliff Huxtable. Bill Cosby is the first dad that comes to mind when thinking of TV dads. Lovable, funny, and PG rated. Cliff Huxtable was/ is an inspiration for all fathers.
Then there was James Evans. Husband to Florida and father to James, Michael and Thelma. James was a strong dad. He may have struggled to provide for his family, but providing for his family was his priority. He worked two jobs and hustled at pool so his family wouldn't go without.
I think other dads were slow to come to mind because their role as father was not the emphasis of their characters. But we do have some great black dads to celebrate from television. We've had Redd Foxx as Fred Sanford, Uncle Phil on the Fresh Prince, and two time father Sherman Hemsley (Amen and The Jeffersons). The short lived series Roc starred Charles Dutton as a great dad and husband.
Also, there are a few more contemporary shows with great dads. My favorite dad from the more recent years is Damon Wayans in My Wife and Kids. I was also in love with Flex Alexander in One on One. There are even some dads that are just in the peripheral of the show (Deacon on King of Queens).
But for all of my TV dads - Happy Fathers Day. I will pay homage to real fathers I know as the week progresses. But give me your feedback - who's been your favorite TV dad (African-American or otherwise)? And tell me, do you think black dads on TV are adequately represented or under-represented?

Monday, June 2, 2008

Sex in the City Doesn't Disappoint

I have to admit, I was one of those sex fiends that rushed out to the theaters over the weekend for the premiere of the long-awaited Sex in the City movie. As a huge fan of the series I couldn't wait to see if they would do justice to my four favorite vixens. Guess what - the movie was A-MAZE-ZING!!! Luved it, luved it, luved it.

But I have to tell you, if you weren't a fan of the show, don't bother going to the movie. This was made just for the fans. There are references that you'll be clueless to if you don't know the history of the characters (i.e. at one point they mention one of Carrie's exes - Aiden).
True to form, the clothes are on point. Fashions by Christian LaCroix, Dior, Oscar de la Renta. To top it all off there is a wedding dress by Vivian Westwood. Don't worry there are fabulous shoes and bags too.

The music is terrific. I went to Napster as soon as I got home to download the soundtrack. And throwing Jennifer Hudson in the movie was just a bonus (she has a song on the soundtrack).

It is true, the movie is over 2 hours long. But honestly it was over before I knew it. So don't let the run time deter you from seeing it.

I was thrilled to learn that the movie came it at almost twice it's expectations. It was assumed that Indiana Jones would remain in the number one spot and Sex would come in at number two. Well, to everyone's surprise, Carrie and the crew took the number one slot brining in 55.7 million dollars. This is the biggest opening ever for an R-rated movie.

Way to go Samantha, Carrie, Miranda and Charlotte. Notice I put Samanta first. I had to, she's my hero.

The Closet 2 Finally Available on DVD


If you're familiar with the first DVD, then I know you've been waiting to find out what happens to everyone. Well finally, last week Senwott Nella Productions announced that part two is available for purchase.

If you're not aware of The Closet, do yourself a favor and purchase series 1 and 2. I'll be the first to say the production is far from stellar, but I still have no regret at all about my purchase. The variety in the cast of characters is great. The issues presented (HIV, the church, the downlow) are real. And the storyline will have you in stitches. It's terrific.

To see clips from the series and to purchase to dvds, please go to the website . . .

Bo Diddley Dead At 79


Today we've lost a Rock 'n' Roll pioneer. Bo Diddley died today surrounded by family and loved ones in Archer, Florida. The cause of death was heart failure.


Inducted into the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame in 1987, Bo Diddley's amazing guitar playing has been imitated repeatedly for decades by many rock legends. His signature beat (which eventually became known as the Bo Diddley beat) laid the foundation for rock 'n' roll.


According to CNN, "among the artists who made use of the Bo Diddley beat were Buddy Holly ("Not Fade Away," later covered by the Rolling Stones), Johnny Otis ("Willie and the Hand Jive"), the Yardbirds (covering Diddley's "I'm a Man" and adding their own guitar stylings to the closing bars, which were later incorporated into the Count Five's "Psychotic Reaction"), the Strangeloves ("I Want Candy"), Bruce Springsteen ("She's the One"), U2 ("Desire") and George Michael ("Faith"). Hundreds of artists have covered Diddley songs."


Rest in peace Bo Diddley and my condolences to his family.




Trans Activist Killed in Puerto Vallarta

Felicia Melton-Smyth, a transexual and community activist from Madison, Wisconsin, was stabbed to death last Monday morning while on vacation in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. Her death has devastated the Madison LGBT community where she was an amazing fundraiser for the AIDS Network.

Officials in Puerto Vallarta had someone in custody the following day. The suspect, Francisco Javier Hollos, claims he killed her because she refused to pay for sex. According to officials, Hollos had been around the resort where Felicia was staying for several days. He didn't have any place to stay when he met Felicia.

Felicia worked as the billing department for the University of Wisconsin Medical Foundation, a clinical practice organization for doctors who work in the hospital and teach in the medical school. Weekends and weeknights you could find her at the Shamrock Bar. There she helped raise money for AIDS initiatives and during the Christmas holidays helped collect gifts for kids with or affected by HIV.

Trans Activist Denied Access to Account

Once again, the country of Uganda is showing its homophobia. Several days ago when female to male transgendered activist Juliet Victor Mukasa went to his bank to take money out of his account, he was told that his account was frozen.
According to the Advocate, Mukasa was born female and now identifies and expresses himself as male. An activist for transgendered issues, he is cofounder of the Sexual Minorities Uganda group and is a research and policy analyst for the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission. He lives in Kampala, Uganda.

He was honest with the bank when asked about his place of employment. He asked if this would be an issue upon opening the account. Days later when he returned to withdraw money, he learned that he could no not access his money. According to the teller, because he works for a homosexual organization and because homosexuality is illegal in his country, there was a freeze on the account.

The bank in question (Standard Chartered Bank) is based in the U.K., not Uganda, so Mukasa assumed that the bank wouldn't fall prey to the local homophobic practices of other institutions. But he was incorrect. In spite of taking his complaint through several bank managers, his account still remains frozen.