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06/13/2015

Oil Company Executive Assaults Gay Activist In Downtown Austin In Apparent Hate Crime

Smith

An oil company president is charged with assaulting a gay activist in an apparent hate crime in downtown Austin in April.

FeraAndy Smith (above left) is executive director of the Texas Instruments Foundation and has been a longtime business leader in the Dallas LGBT community. Smith and his husband, Paul Von Wupperfield (above right), were walking in downtown Austin on April 18 when Anthony J. Fera (right), the president of a Houston-based oil company, nearly struck them with his truck as he was leaving a parking lot. 

The Austin Statesman reports: 

Smith yelled at Fera who responded with anti-gay slurs, the affidavit says. Fera and Smith continued to argue until Fera eventually got [out of] his truck and punched Smith in the face, according to the affidavit. Smith was unconscious for about a minute and suffered a broken nose as well as cuts to his face, the affidavit said.

Fera, 51, is the president of MidStar Energy and the father of former UT kicker Anthony Fera. MidStar Energy’s website lists horizontal drilling and well planning among the services it offers.

Fera was arrested June 2 and charged with assault with injury, a class-A misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail and a $4,000 fine. Texas has a hate crimes law that includes sexual orientation. However, there is no penalty enhancement available under the hate crimes law for a class-A misdemeanor. 

Posted Jun. 13,2015 at 8:02 PM EST by in Austin, Dallas, Gay Rights, Hate Crime, Texas | Permalink | Comments (25)


Latrice Royale And Willam Belli Share Their Love Of 'Thick Thighs': VIDEO

Willam Belli Thick Thighs

It's been a long time since a good song about butts played over the airwaves. Kelis gave the rump some attention back in 2003 with "Milkshake", and who can forget Sir Mix-A-Lot's 1992's magnum opus "Baby Got Back", but Latrice Royale and Willam Belli have decided to bring attention to the love of male butt with "Thick Thighs".

The cheeky (ha!) music video has more than just thick thighs, and whereas Mr. A-Lot kept things a little coy with his anaconda euphemisms, Willam gets right to the point with her lyrics, singing, "Thick thighs make the dick rise." Indeed they do, Willam; indeed they do.

You can check out the thick thighs AFTER THE JUMP...

Posted Jun. 13,2015 at 6:45 PM EST by in Music Video, Video, Willam | Permalink | Comments (10)


Gay Iconography: Going Glam With Adam Lambert

Adamlamtop

Looking back at the stir Adam Lambert caused with his flamboyant persona back in 2009, the media storm that followed the singer since his debut on American Idol seems like so long ago. The singing reality competition was still a ratings juggernaut at the time and the glam rocker’s performances (and personal life) permeated cultural conversation.

Lambert’s impressive vocal abilities garnered praise from even the most sour Idol judge, but it was his unique style that worked conservative commentators like Bill O’Reilly and Elisabeth Hasselbeck into a lather. The “is he or isn’t he?” fascination seems almost quaint, but the swirling rumors and old photos brought up questions about the viability of an out gay pop artist.

Both Idol’s notoriously hush-hush treatment of LGBT contestants and Lambert’s own forthrightness about his sexuality played out oddly in the media, with Lambert never outright denying that he was gay. However, there was some degree of obfuscation. Lambert ran afoul of Out Magazine in November 2009 for allegedly making demands for how he was portrayed. There was also a strange spread in Details Magazine with Lambert getting intimate with a naked woman. The season-eight runner-up set the record, ahem, straight with a Rolling Stone interview and segment on 20/20.

While he took a winding road from his introduction to mainstream audiences to being an out performer, once he embraced his sexuality, he made quite an impact. His now infamous performance at the 2009 American Music Awards featured him rubbing a male dancer's head into his crotch and kissing his male keyboardist. The performance pushed networks and audiences to confront the double standard of gay male artists displaying sexuality on stage.

Lambert has gone on to a successful solo career, becoming the first openly gay artist to have an album reach number one on the Billboard 200 chart. He’s also toured with Queen, performing vocals in place of their legendary singer Freddie Mercury.

As a member of the LGBT community, he’s worked with The Trevor Project, the Olena Pinchuk ANTIAIDS Foundation, Marylanders For Marriage Equality, Life Ball and Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS.

See more of Lambert’s career highlights, AFTER THE JUMP

 

 

Lambert first made his mark as the runner-up on season eight of American Idol. On a competition that regularly rewarded mainstream appeal, Lambert was a refreshing presence. His dark, theatrical style was in stark contrast to bland balladeer (and eventual winner) Kris Allen. Though he didn’t take the top prize, he still had some of the most memorable performances, including "Mad World," above.

 

On Nov. 22, 2009, Lambert took the stage at the American Music Awards. His controversial performance caused ABC to cancel his appearance on Good Morning America the following day. Instead, he appeared at CBS on The Early Show, where they blurred a still of him kissing his keyboardist, but showed an unaltered picture of Britney and Madonna kissing.

 

As Elliot “Starchild” Gilbert, Lambert joined the Glee ensemble in the show’s fifth season. His notable performances included a cover of Heart’s “Barracuda,” a duet of “I Believe In A Thing Called Love” with Chris Colfer and the rendition of Lady Gaga’s “Marry the Night” above.

 

After receiving comparisons to the powerful, charismatic performer Freddie Mercury, Lambert fronted the classic rock band Queen for a string of performances, including appearances at the 2013 iHeartRadio Music Festival, on X Factor in the United Kingdom and in a string of sold-out arena shows around the world.

 

Lambert’s next album, The Original High, will be released Tuesday. Check out the Hype Williams produced video for the single, “Ghost Town” above.

Are you a part of the Glambert Fan Army?

Posted Jun. 13,2015 at 3:00 PM EST by in Adam Lambert, American Idol, Gay Iconography | Permalink | Comments (9)


Michael Sam Leaves Montreal Alouettes' Training Camp, Returns To Texas For 'Personal Reasons'

Sam.Michael

Less than a month after joining the Canadian Football League, openly gay defensive end Michael Sam has left the Montreal Alouettes' training camp and returned to his native Texas for personal reasons. 

ESPN.com reports that the team issued a statement on Sam's departure Friday: 

"The Montreal Alouettes organization would like to clarify the situation surrounding international defensive end Michael Sam," the team said in a statement. "Friday morning, Michael asked the team a special permission to leave training camp and return home for personal reasons.

"The Montreal Alouettes fully respect Michael Sam's decision and rally around him to offer him all time and support needed. The team has left the door open and Michael is welcome to come back whenever he feels ready."

The Alouettes were scheduled to play their preseason opener on Saturday. Sam signed a one-year, $100,000 deal with the Alouettes in May. 

Yahoo Sports Canada reports that Sam had only one small bag with him when he left, indicating he might be back:  

That [the team's statement] makes it clear that Sam did ask for and receive permission to return home, and that's positive for his CFL future. It's also positive that the team sounds enthusiastic about his potential return. However, the time he misses may still affect his chances of being an effective contributor at the CFL level. We'll see how this plays out.

Last year, Sam became the first openly gay player drafted in the NFL, but he never appeared in a regular season game. He was cut by the St. Louis Rams before joining the Dallas Cowboys' practice squad, but was later released. 

Posted Jun. 13,2015 at 2:00 PM EST by in Canada, Football (American), Michael Sam, Montréal, NFL, Texas | Permalink | Comments (36)


Anti-Gay Michigan Autoshop Owner's 'God and Country' Hate Forum Gets Queerbombed By LGBT Supporters: VIDEO

Klawiter

Brian Klawiter, the owner of the Grandville, Michigan auto shop who made headlines in April for vowing he "would not hesitate to refuse service to an openly gay person or persons" but that gun owners would receive a discount at his shop, is back in the news after hosting a "God and Country" forum at a local performing arts theater that quickly devolved into a series of shouting matches between supporters and opponents.

Klawiter's event was also notable for bringing some of the nuttiest anti-gay bigots out of the woodwork, such as Republican national committeeman and former state representative Dave Agema, right-wing blowhard 'Coach Dave' Daubenmire, and Christian rocker/Michele Bachmann pal Bradlee Dean

MLive reports:

Klawiter2"We're not looking for a fight," said Klawiter, while talking to an Ottawa County sheriff's captain about security and dealing with outbursts prior to the the forum at the Jenison Center for the Arts.

But a verbal struggle — and a brief physical altercation — is exactly what transpired as Klawiter and others, including Republican national committeeman and former state representative Dave Agema invoked the Bible to say homosexuality is a sin.

Agema took the microphone first to revisit several of the discredited "homosexual statistics" that landed him in his own controversy two years ago.

Between nearly every sentence, a protester would shout. Eventually, in unison, they chanted "Gay is OK!"

Watch footage from the hate forum, AFTER THE JUMP...

 

 

Posted Jun. 13,2015 at 1:00 PM EST by in Brian Klawiter, Discrimination, Michigan, News | Permalink | Comments (16)


Bill Maher Pokes Fun at Sen. Lindsey Graham's Suspicious Bachelorhood: VIDEO

Maher

With Lindsey Graham's bachelorhood in the headlines this week, Bill Maher couldn't help but poke fun at the rumor dogged senator in his Real Time monologue last night.

Maher said that while he takes Graham at his word that he's not gay, the 2016 contenders recent comments on the violence in the Middle East are certainly raising some eyebrows.

Find out what's got Maher tickled, AFTER THE JUMP...

 

Posted Jun. 13,2015 at 12:00 PM EST by in 2016 Election, Bill Maher, Elections, Lindsey Graham, News | Permalink | Comments (13)



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