Jason Howard Green

Jason Howard Green

Monday, August 31, 2009

Vogue Evolution Continues to Bring It

Child, a bitch is busy, so I don't have the opportunity to watch TV on a regular. But I'm loving Vogue Evolution being a part of this season of America's Best Dance Crew. So I have to stay on top of their performances via YouTube (thank you to my friend Rod who continues to forward them to me as they come). These kids are serving. They are great dancers and I'm really pulling for them to win.

Witnesses Sought in Trans Murder

It always saddens me to write about another trans person being killed because it seems like I have to write about something like this atleast once a month. The latest happened in Washington D.C. Joshua Mack (aka Tyli'a "NaNa Boo" Mack) and a second transgender woman were found suffering from stab wounds at about 2:30 PM on Wednesday. Mack was pronounced dead approximately 30 minutes later at Howard University Hospital. The second unidentified victim is expected to survive her injuries.

Friends and family members of Mack are asking for anyone with info that may help catch the killer(s) to come forward because as of this moment there are no suspects. Acting Lt. Brett Parson, who oversees the D.C. police's Gay & Lesbian Liaison Unit, said homicide investigators working on the case listed the incident as a "possible" hate crime. Police on Wednesday released a flyer displaying a photo of Mack and announcing they were offering a $25,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for her death.

"All I want is the people to come forward and talk about it," said Beverlyn Mack, Tyli'a Mack's mother. "I don't like it because my child was born just like everyone else — through a mother's womb," she said. "And I don't think it's fair for other people to take other people's lives."

I've attended the Transgender Day of Remembrance several years in a row. At this remembrance, the trans community acknowledges the trans people that were killed over the course of the year. It seems that each year the list gets longer. So I'm left to wonder if we'll ever see the day when this madness will stop.

A Letter to the President

Rep. Alcee Hastings of Florida has sent an open letter to President Obama about his want for an end to Don't Ask, Don't Tell (DADT). He stated that he is "deeply disappointed" that the ban on openly gay and lesbian military personnel has not be lifted. This letter is a follow up to a letter delivered to the President in late July calling for and end to the anti-gay process the military uses to keep LGBT soldiers in the closet. The intial letter was signed by 77 representatives and called DADT a "ridiculous, bigoted law."

According to the Advocate, "The Florida Democrat, who is the vice chairman of the Intelligence Committee, said he was also disappointed that President Obama had not responded to the initial letter. 'With the recent addition of 17,000 American troops to Afghanistan and the possibility of another request for even more troops from General McChrystal in the coming weeks, I am sure that you will agree that we cannot afford to lose any of our dedicated, highly qualified service members to 'don't ask, don't tell,'" he wrote in Thursday's letter.

I personally am hoping the President will soon follow through with the promises he made while running for office. As a candidate he seemed to be one of our greatest allies. Now I'm waiting to see that promise fulfilled.

Buju Banton Shows Cancelled

It's no secret that many Reggae and dance-hall artists are extremely homophobic. They're lyrics mock and insult the LGBT community. Some songs actually call for the beating and killing of gays and lesbians. Buju Banton is one of those artists. One line from his Battyman song [Battyman is the Jamaicaan slang for faggot] calls for people to "burn him up bad like an old tire wheel." Because of artists like Banton, many gay rights groups are protesting concerts by reggae and dancehall artists that are anti-gay. And many of these protest efforts are being effective.

Live Nation is a promotion group that had scheduled a series of concerts for Buju Banton. He was set to perform in Chicago, Las Angelos, Dallas and Houston and there were plans for future shows. However, gay rights advocates starting harassing the Beverly Hills based Live Nation about the violent anti-gay lyrics of Banton. I'm pleased to the say the group listened because they have cancelled all of these shows and are offering refunds to everyone that has purchased tickets. Way to go!!!

The Victory Fund Supports . . .

I've heard of the Victory Fund. I knew it was an advocacy group that supported LGBT candidates seeking political office. I was just browsing through Advocate.com and learned of several candidates that the fund is supporting (not just metaphorically but financially) in their bid for their respective offices. I was very pleased to learn of the 8 new candidates they're adding to there list of endorsees. Taking a look at the photo above I'm now excited to learn a bit more about the Victory Fund. Too often I learn of LGBT groups that are founded by and support only white gay males. But as I see this list of candidates (4 African-Americans, 2 women, and 1 Asian-American), it gives me hope that LGBT organizations are beginning to embrace the many different diverse backgrounds that make up our rainbow. I want to say thank you to the Victory Fund for this great work and good luck to all of these candidates.

And just who are these candidates? Well, the Victory Fund is offering financial support and advice to Daniel Dromm and Rosie Méndez, running for New York City Council seats representing Queens and Manhattan, respectively. Ken Reeves, running for Cambridge, Mass., city council; Amaad Rivera, hoping to secure a seat on the Springfield, Mass., city council; and Fred Chang, running for the Port Orchard, Wash., city council, also have the Victory Fund's support.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Confessions of A Bisexual

I was purusing through YouTube listening to my new favorite song On The Ocean by K'Jon. Then I found this video of a girl singing the song. As I was listening to her sing I noticed she had a post called, "Is Being Gay a Choice." Of course I had to check it out to see what she had to say. It's an interesting perspective. I do believe I was born this way but that's just me, I can't speak for all gay, lesbian and bi people. Choice or not, I'm just proud to see more and more black folks embracing who they are and being true to themselves. We can no longer live our lives concerned about what the next person thinks. Deborahsdaughter7 - thanx for sharing.

And oh yeah - great rendition of On the Ocean. You have a beautiful voice. For those that would like to hear her sing, check her out here.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

The Mayor To Be Married

Denise Simmons is the mayor of Cambridge, Massachussets. She is the first black lesbian in the country to hold the title mayor. Now, this dynamic woman has announced that next weekend she plans to marry her partner Mattie B. Hayes. Simmons released her wedding announcement by way of a press release to the local Cambridge media. She made this statement: “I believe this may be the very first African-American church to hold a same-gender wedding, and that’s something that just wouldn’t have happened years ago." Kudos to Mayor Simmons and her partner. I wish them years of marital bliss.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Lesbians Demand Equality

I want to say thank you to the Washington Blade for making me aware of this story. An African-American lesbian couple was asked to leave by a restaurant after embracing in front of its customers. Apparently, the Tastee Diner of Silver Springs, MD was not ready to deal with two strong black beautiful women showing affection to each other in public. The couple returned to stage a "kiss-in" which was very well attended. One demonstrator even brought her ten-year-old son to the demonstration and he was holding a sign in support of the couple. But now that the "kiss-in" is behind them, Aiyi'nah Ford and her partner Torian Brown will continue with their complaint by taking this issue to the Maryland Commission on Human Relations.

I have to admit, I am very pleased to see black folks spear-heading the fight for LGBT equality. The restaurant was very stupid in it's actions and I'm sure there will be consequences. We can only wait now to see how severe those consequences will be. Ms. Ford and Ms. Brown - go head with yourself. You make this black gay man proud. Please get into their video below.

Man or Woman? Runner's Gender in Doubt

Caster Semenya just blew away her competition in an 800M track competition in Berlin yesterday. She set a world record for speed and her nearest competitor was a whopping 2.45 seconds behind. Now, following this success and fame, comes the haters. Semenya's win is being contested by some of the others in the race. They are accusing her of being a boy. And now there are many demanding that this 18-year-old undergo a series of test to prove that she is a girl. They're not just trying to determine if she have a vagina. It sounds like they've all come to consensus on that question. They would like to run tests - might I add, a series of tests, to determine if she is 100% boy. There are suspicions (or I should say accusations) that she may have been born with genetalia of both sexes but now may be biologically female.

I can't believe the audacity of some people. Now that these people have lost they have to come up with every reason in the world why their failure is someone else's fault. So now, although Semenya may be all women biologically and was probably born all woman despite her accusers concerns, she has to endure this taunting and judgement while she is on the world stage. Lord, give her strength. She is going to need it. Her mother and her grandmother have verified her gender identity and if anyone should know I would think these women would. If I were her I would NOT consent to the testing. I know this will probably make even more people raise and eyebrow but fuck'em. She has proven herself to those that matter and in my humble opinion - the rest can just . . . well I won't go there. I'll just congratulations Semenya on your win.

Monday, August 17, 2009


Are All Gay People Crazy?

According to a recent study by the UCLA School of Public Health, gays and lesbians receive mental health treatment at twice the rates of heterosexuals. Also according to this study, the group least like to seek mental treatment is staight men. Well, duh. Okay - straight people live in a world where we are looked upon as second class citizens. We don't have the right to marry. Many live in fear that if we come out we will lose our jobs, be rejected by our friends and family, and be told that were not deserving of God's love. I could have saved the school a lot of money and told them this for free. But kudos to the school for tackling the subject in the first place.

But now that this has been proven by UCLA, do we think society will do anything to improve circumstances for the LGBT community. I'm very doubtful. There is no sign of an end to DOMA (Defense of Marriage Act). We still can't openly serve in the military. And in many states, we can still lose our jobs for being gay. What does this mean? This means that psychologists will continue to see a large number of LGBT individuals that seek their advice for a way to navigate successfully through a world that is seemingly unwelcoming and unchanging.

Tap Into Your Inner Power: Oprah's Power List

I personally love me some Oprah. If she says it, I believe. For the first time she has generated a list of 20 Powerful People. She has created a list of 20 Females that for her radiate a power that she can feel. Oprah stated that it's always baffled her how people can generate a list of People of Power and then several months later, when a new list comes out, people have totally dropped off the list. It left her wondering if these people ever had power in the first place, or did they have power because they were in a certain position or held a political office, but once out of that role the power was then gone. For Oprah (and I'll have to concur because I feel the same way) real power has to come from within. Real power comes from a spiritual place and in people that have it, it shows.

Please go here to check out Oprah's first ever Power List. Read the bios of the people on this list . Then reflect on your own situation. Sometimes we feel like we can't do anything to influence the world around us, or we feel helpless in that we can't change our situation. If these stories don't encourage you then nothing will.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Don't Fret E. Lynn Harris Fans

If you're a fan of the phenomenal E. Lynn Harris like I am, then his recent death left you in quite the quandary. I was devastated at the loss of such a tremendous talent and at the same time disappointed that I won't have any more of his books to look forward to. If you've read any of his books then you understand my dilemma. His books were captivating. The characters he created on the pages of his books (over and over and over again) drew me in and kept my attention until the very last page. At the conclusion of every book I was left in a void. I was always wondering when the next book would be out to draw me in again.

When I got the news about his death it hit me that I may never have an E. Lynn Harris moment again. I'm sure other fans of Harris understand the E. Lynn Harris moment. True fans of his always paid attention so we knew when another one of his books was being released. Then the countdown began; it's the countdown to the day the book would be released and I can make my trip to Barnes & Nobles and pick up my copy. The MOMENT I'm referring to is the moment you get into the book store and actually pick up your copy of the book. The moment is intense and exciting because you know that you're about to escape into another world filled with beautiful people, romance, drama and that special magic that only E. Lynn Harris could create. I'm not ashamed to say that on several occasions I've taken the day off from work to enjoy a new book by Harris.

The death of E. Lynn left me a bit wounded because I couldn't again have an E. Lynn Harris moment. Or so I thought. Apparently there are two novels that were completed by Harris before he suddenly left us. One is schedule for release in September. That's next month. That means that another E. Lynn Harris moment is just over the horizon for me. Hooray! Mama Dearest will hit the shelves of your favorite bookstore very soon and it will be a follow up to Not A Day Goes By. This news brings a smile to my face (and I'm sure to many other faces too). The other novel, The Bentley Chronicles, is scheduled to be released in 2010.

Also, apparently there are still people working to make several of his books make it to the big screen. This is also fabulous news. I've always thought his stories would play out very well on film. I won't get too excited about this latter news until I hear casting is happening or production has started. But I'm hopeful that this vision makes it to reality. Until then I have all the books I currently have on my shelf and the two novels that are making there ways to the bookstores to keep me happy.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Bullied Teen's Mother Talks To Congress

Sirdeaner Walker testifies before Congress about the suicide of her 11 year old son Carl Hayden Joseph-Walker. He took his own life because he was he tired of being bullied and called gay. Her testimony is a very powerful one. Please check out the video.

Rape Suspects Had An Audience

I commented on this story a few months ago when the news first dropped. Several high school students sexually assaulted a classmate with a hockey stick. This prank which they all contest was just done in fun has led to these individuals being tried as adults on rape charges. Well now more interesting news is being revealed.

It has now come out that this assault was not done in private. The student that was attacked is now saying the entire football team was there and witnessed his attack. According to Queerty, "Many members of a Florida middle school's flag football team were in the locker room when a 13-year-old boy was sexually assaulted by some of his teammates with a hockey stick and broomstick, according to court documents released Tuesday. The teen told a detective that two teammates penetrated him with a stick as many as a dozen times while two others held him down. He said 'basically the whole team' was in the room. The boy said the sexual assaults happened over a period of several weeks but it was unclear how many times. … One witness described hearing the victim yelling at the boys to stop. Another said the victim was fighting to get away but laughed when he finally did.

I just don't understand how the kids involved in this assault thought this was amusing. What's funny about holding a guy hostage and violating him with a hockey stick. I know how locker room behavior works and I know that teens need to demonstrate their Alpha Male mentality occasionally. This really manifests when there is a group of others watching. But these kids are now realizing there are consequences to their action. Homophobia may not even be a factor in this equation. The main catalyst for this behavior is probably stupidity and adolescent immaturity. It'll be interesting to see how this plays out when these kids go to court.

The Diva League

I do enjoy a good drag show. And good drag shows are few and far between. We just had this fun performance from The Diva League on America's Got Talent. What do you think? Do they have talent?

Wanda Sykes Gets Talk Show

Bout damn time. Wanda is funny ya'll. I'm talking about milk coming out your nose kinda funny. I love a girl that calls it like she sees it (and the way she sees it is always right). In a recent press release, the official announcement finally came. Wanda's show will premiere on November 7 at 11:00 PM. The show will air every Saturday night at 11:00 PM on Fox. I can't wait. I guess that means MadTV is being cancelled. Oh well - they haven't been funny since Deborah Wilson left the show.

I'm so excited about Wanda Sykes getting a show. Her's is a voice that is needed on television right now. She speaks what many of us are feeling. Even though the show may only air once a week, it makes me excited about watching TV again. Lord knows I don't have a reason to watch it right now (well I do have Real Life Housewives of Atlanta - that's the bomb).

Wanda, I am wishing you much luck on your new show. I will be tuned in every Saturday night to see you. I want to say thank you for being the funny lady that you are. Thank you for making me laugh so hard that I shed a few tears. Thank you for bringing awareness to gay bullying and namecalling. Thank you for coming out and representing the black LGBT community so well. You are an inspiration to many.

But before I go, let me recap. We got a Black U.S. President. We got a Hispanic woman on the Supreme Court. Now we have a black lesbian with her own TV show. Child, we done overcome and somebody forgot to tell me. America - go head with your self.

Latifah Spotted At Lesbian Club

You know my feelings about outing people. There are some circumstances when it should be done (like in the movie Outrage, where closeted Republicans that pass legislature that harm the LGBT community are outed). As a general rule, I don't think people she be pushed or forced out of the closet. But child, when they're caught I'm gonna be first to tell you about it.

One of my all time favorite people in the world (and someone that I suspect is a member of the LGBT community) was recently spotted at a lesbian bar having herself a good old time. According to the New York Post, Queen Latifah aka Dana Owens aka Who You Calling a Bitch was sited at the Country Club's Wednesday night lesbian party "Eden." According to the source of the NY Post, "She chilled for several hours, ordering bottle service for her friends and chatting up promoter Maggie Collier."

Maybe Latifah is getting ready to make the big announcement. I think it would a terrific thing to have more out African-American celebrities. Lord knows there is plenty of room for more. Kudos to the few we have (Wanda Sykes, Rahsaan Patterson, Meshell N'Degeochello) but there are so many more that need to walk in their truth. But for Latifah, I love her death in or out of the closet. But if she decides to come out, she will fly to the top of my celebrity list.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Doug Spearman Hosts Equality Awards Gala

This past weekend, Doug Spearman (Chance from Noah's Arc) hosted the Equality California Equality Awards Gala at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza in Las Angelos. The gala which is a fund raiser for Equality California served as a means to recognize some of those individuals that have been fighting for equality for the LGBT community. As Spearman took the microphone to begin the evening he talked about having his right to marry stripped away by Prop 8. He stated, "Yup, it sucked. But that's why were here tonight.

I am excited to see Spearman continue his vow to be an out and visible force for the gay community. If you remember, Spearman was the first individual from the original cast of Noah's Arc to come out as gay. I know we assume that they all play on our team but most of them have not admitted to it. Thus far, the only out individuals are Spearman, Darryl Stephens (and he was basically forced out when Out magazine listed him in their Out 100 year end special) and Wilson Cruz. Keep up the great work Doug Spearman.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

No Lube - There's A Solution.

I just had to share this. It's tacky and uncouth and right up my alley. I'm not saying I have the ability to pull off these stunts and shows, I just found it entertaining to watch.

Benjamin Todd Jealous, the NAACP and Gay Rights

Recently, the new head of the NAACP, Benjamin Todd Jealous, sat down with the New York Times to answer a few questions (including the question do you identify as black - child, you just got to read the interview). His answers were short (and I have a feeling that they were deliberately short just by gaging the questions he received) but they were very much to the point.

Of course he received a question about Dr. Louis Gates and his recent arrest. They wanted to know what the organization was doing about the incident. But he also received a question about Prop 8 and the inability of African-Americans to embrace same-sex marriage.

I think his answer was great. His response was, "black voters have been scapegoated - so many pundits blamed the passage of Proposition 8 on them. But it would have passed even if 100 percent of the black voters had voted against it."

I loved this answer. For some reason the passage of Prop 8 seemed to be dropped squarely in the hands of black voters. I just had so many issues with this. But I won't digress. Let's continue with the interview of Jealous.

Why do you think it’s such a divisive issue in the black community?

"If gay rights groups want to change the opinion polls in the black community, they have to invest in it. It’s a long-term conversation. The battle to oppose Prop 8 could have been much better run. They came to the black community late, with the expectation that they were going to get certain results."

So you think gays should mobilize blacks instead of expecting you to?
"That’s exactly right."

The final question seemed almost accusatory. To me the phrasing of the question sounds like a set up. But it was a set up that Jealous didn't fall for. Why would the gay community expect the NAACP to mobilize blacks on gay issues? It's terrific that the organization can be an ally on LGBT issues but I would not expect the NAACP to take the lead in the fight for same-sex marriage. The question to me sounds like its trying to absolve LGBT groups from having to engage black folks in a dialogue about same-gender loving issues.

That may not be the case but thats just what I seemed to get out of this. Anywho, I'm impressed with how Jealous handled the questions he received. I don't know if the answers were abbreviated for the article or if Jealous intentionally gave short answers because he was guarded (but if he was guarded - I can understand why). I'm hoping the allegiance to the fight for gay rights issues that Julian Bond started for the NAACP is continued under the leadership of Jealous. Only tme will tell.