Monday, August 21, 2017

Gay Couple Shamed For Attempting To Share Dessert

(image via flickr)

Upscale restaurant The Prime Rib in Washington D.C. prides itself as one of the top-five romantic restaurants in America.

But when Ron Gage, 55, and his partner, Henry McKinnon, 58, ordered one sundae with two spoons to close out their evening, the romantic atmosphere quickly died as their waiter told them two men eating from the same dish "doesn't go with the ambiance of the restaurant."

From the Washington Post:

“When it came time for dessert, we asked for one sundae with two spoons,” Gage said. Their server “said he would bring it in two separate dishes. He said ‘It wouldn’t look right with two gentlemen eating out of the same sundae. It doesn’t go with the ambiance of the restaurant.’ ”

The pair didn’t know how to react.

“We were speechless, we nodded,” Gage said. “We weren’t expecting it.”

Stunned, they kept their conversation with the server to a minimum for the rest of the meal, and tipped him 15 percent — they usually tip 20 — and left the restaurant without addressing it with a manager.

“I’m kind of embarrassed to say we didn’t say anything,” McKinnon said. “It just took us back to such a shameful place, in a way.”

But after they had slept on it, they were angry about the encounter and posted about it on Facebook and Yelp.

When contacted by The Washington Post, the Prime Rib’s general manager, James MacLeod, said he was still trying to piece together the situation and hadn’t had a chance to speak to the server in depth yet.

“The waiter in question is Bulgarian, and he does speak four different languages,” said MacLeod, noting that English is not the server’s first language. “I am not sure if he got confused as to what he was saying, or how he was saying it.”

While the manager says he plans to reach out to the couple, Gage and McKinnon say they doubt they'll return to the restaurant. “It was unbelievable how it made us feel,” McKinnon said.

Song Of The Day: Bonnie Tyler "Total Eclipse Of The Heart"

Happy Eclipse Day!

ABC News is reporting that Bonnie Tyler will perform her 80s mega-hit "Total Eclipse of the Heart" during the actual eclipse today alongside Joe Jonas' band DNCE as part Royal Caribbean's special "Total Eclipse Cruise."

Sales of her 1983 hit have soared 503% in the week leading up to today's eclipse.

News Round-Up: August 21, 2017

(via Instagram)

Some news items you may have missed:

• After Russian President Vladimir Putin shared a shirtless pic during his recent vacay in Siberia, a Russian social media entrepreneur challenged men to take the #PutinShirtlessChallenge (above).

• The president of Chile is set to formally introduce legislation to allow same-sex couples to marry. Chile would become the 25th country on the planet to make marriage equality the law of the land.

• After this year's Kennedy Center Honor recipients were announced this week, dancer/choreographer Carmen de Lavallade and television writer and producer Norman Lear told the press they would not be attending the annual White House reception before the event. In response, Donald Trump and Melania Trump issued a statement saying they would skip the Honors event this year.

• Producers of the upcoming Will & Grace reboot have snagged a big guest star: Former First Lady Michelle Obama.

• There's currently a GoFundMe campaign that aims to raise $1 billion to buy a controlling interest in Twitter, and then delete Donald Trump's account.

• The USA Men's Wrestling team (below) closed the books on "Champ Camp" and are heading to the World Championships.

University Of Texas Moves Confederate Statues From Main Campus To History Center

The University of Texas at Austin is moving all statues of Confederate leaders from campus grounds to the Dolph Briscoe Center for American History where they belong.

Via HuffPost:

The monuments “have become symbols of modern white supremacy and neo-Nazism,” the university’s president said.

The University of Texas at Austin joins the growing list of institutions and cities across the country removing statues that honor leaders of the Confederacy.

University president Gregory Fenves announced Sunday night that the school was taking down statues of Confederate Gens. Robert E. Lee and Albert Sidney Johnston, as well as Confederate Postmaster General John Reagan.

“Last week, the horrific displays of hatred at the University of Virginia and in Charlottesville shocked and saddened the nation. These events make it clear, now more than ever, that Confederate monuments have become symbols of modern white supremacy and neo-Nazism,” Fenves wrote in a letter to the UT community.

Fenves, in his letter, noted that the statues were “erected during the period of Jim Crow laws and segregation.” The statues “represent the subjugation of African Americans,” he said. “That remains true today for white supremacists who use them to symbolize hatred and bigotry.”

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Podcast: Texas "Bathroom Bill" Dies In Special Session; Kesha Dedicates "Rainbow" to LGBTs

In this week’s podcast:

• The special session of the Texas legislature closed this week without passing a proposed anti-transgender bathroom bill

• A Missouri lawmaker thinks there’s a difference between human beings and the gays

• Kesha penned an open letter to LGBTs explaining the title track to her new album, Rainbow

Those stories and more on this episode of The Randy Report

LGBT Teen Suicide Front & Center In Logic's Evocative Music Video "1-800-273-8255"

Dark societal pressures come down heavy on a gay teenager in the new video from Logic titled, "1-800-273-8255."

The title is the actual phone number of the National Suicide Prevention Hotline, where those in crisis can find confidential support.

The haunting short film tells the story of a gay teen (played by Coy Stewart) who is slowly coming to terms with his sexuality and his burgeoning relationship with another boy (Modern Family's Nolan Gould).

But the two boy's fathers (played by Don Cheadle and Matthew Modine) are not down with the gay thing, and life begins to spiral out of control.

Throughout the song, Alessia Cara and Khalid are featured offering positive counterpoint to the teen's turmoil.

The track appears on Logic's new album, Everybody, which debuted at #1 on the Billboard Top 200.

Watch the evocative video below.

Submitted Without Comment

A Terrifying Secret From The Life Of A Meth Addict

(photo via Mark King)

Award-winning health and HIV/AIDS journalist, Mark King shares a decade old secret from his days of meth addiction.

He is sitting across from me and we are naked. Seconds earlier, we had both injected ourselves with meth. The pounding rush of the drug is in full force and the possibilities feel endless. I’m looking forward to the sexual promises we had made to one another when we chatted online. Desperately. Now.

But even in my delirium, I have the feeling that something is off. I am blinking through watery eyes and have begun to focus on him. He is staring at me, his gaze fixed with an intense and completely unexpected contempt.

And there is a gun in his hand. A gun a gun a gun a gun.

“You’re not who you say you are,” he says, softly and suspiciously. He trembles from the impact of the meth. As he speaks, the gun the gun the gun is moving this way and that, pointed mostly in my direction.

I have no response. I don’t know what he is capable of, or if the gun is loaded, if he will pull the trigger, if this is a sadistic sex game. I met the man maybe an hour ago. I wonder if you can die of fright.

Read the full personal essay over at Queerty.

Mark is a recovering addict and is the author of the blog My Fabulous Disease. I highly recommend checking out more of his inspiring and powerful writing.

Donald Trump Covers Der Spiegel

Der Spiegel ("The Mirror"), Germany's weekly newsmagazine, and one of Europe's most widely read, puts their version of Donald Trump on the cover with the caption, "The true face of Donald Trump."

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Boston Hate Rally Met With Tens Of Thousands Of Counter-Protesters

From CNN:

Thousands of counterdemonstrators marched Saturday in downtown Boston in response to a self-described free speech rally that had sparked concerns of possible violence.

The largely peaceful march and rally came one week after racially motivated protests in Charlottesville, Virginia, turned deadly.

Amid a heavy police presence, men, women and children from diverse backgrounds showed up Saturday morning to march from the Reggie Lewis Track and Athletic Center in Roxbury to Boston Common, the nation's oldest park.

Some carried signs with messages such as "No Trump. No KKK. No racist USA" and "Americans against hate." At times, they chanted "Hey hey, ho ho, white supremacy has got to go" and "Black lives matter."

Police maintained a buffer zone between marchers and rally participants -- averting major incidents except for occasional clashes and shouting matches between the counterprotesters and supporters of President Donald Trump.

Out Music: Superfruit "Heartthrob"

Superfruit keeps the hits coming with their latest new retro music video for their 90s-themed party track “Heartthrob.”

Amid a candy-colored sleepover, Mitch Grassi and Scott Hoying crush hard on ’90s Tiger Beat poster boys like Freddie Prinze Jr. and Jonathan Taylor Thomas.

Nineties heartthrob
Frosted tips and a middle part
TigerBeat said he's off the charts
Nineties heartthrob

Complete with sparkly phones, John Stamos posters, cucumber face masks and matching pajamas, Grassi and Hoying capture the spirit of those pre-Internet years.

"Heartthrob" is the latest in a series of Superfruit videos from their debut EP, Future Friends - Part One.

Over the past several weeks I've shared other tracks from the EP: "Imaginary Parties," "Worth It (Perfect)," "Vacation" and "Bad 4 Us."

Watch below.

A Man Plants A Tree Every Day For 37 Years

Um, wow.

Jadav Payeng has planted a tree in the same place everyday for 37 years.

Take a look at what he's accomplished. This is awesome.

Organizer Of Charlottesville Hate Rally: Heather Heyer's Death Was "Payback"

The organizer of the Charlottesville neo-nazi rally, Jason Kessler, tweeted last night that the counter-protester killed during the ensuing violence was a "fat, disgusting Communist."

Kessler also seemed to indicate that the woman, Heather Heyer, somehow deserved to die saying her death "looks like payback time."

This morning, Kessler claimed he was hacked:

And sometime later, Kessler changed his story blaming his hateful words on "stress" and a result of taking sleeping medications along with alcohol and anti-anxiety drugs.

Shortly after that, Kessler deleted his entire Twitter account.

Even his fellow white supremacists disavowed his hateful rhetoric:

Some far-right loons have begun claiming Kessler is actually a left-leaning "plant" trying to discredit the alt-right:

Weekend Wisdom

"You can’t control what others think. The only thing you can control is yourself. Some people will look down on you for your choices in life, no matter what they are. You can’t do anything about that. The only thing you can do is decide how to live your own life. And to hell with everybody else..." - via Instagram

I needed to read these words yesterday. A project I'm working on is creeping up on crunch time and a few folks have attempted to change my approach to how I face challenges, bringing a darker energy to bear which is not my natural bent.

For a few minutes, I doubted myself. And then, in the flip of a switch in my head, I changed that thought, changed my mind, and it was gone.

I was/am back to my chosen perspective of putting one foot in front of the other, in a positive frame of mind, and knowing all goals will be accomplished.

Not to be too pithy, but never forget - what others think of you doesn't matter. How you choose to handle yourself is always up to you.

And wine. Wine is important, too :)

Friday, August 18, 2017

Snopes: Pic Of 'Antifa' Member Beating Cop In Charlottesville Was Photoshopped

Fact-checking website Snopes looked into a photo which went viral after last weekend's white supremacist violence in Charlottesville, Virginia and found the image had been doctored to look like an anti-fascist protester beating a police officer.

Neo-nazis/white supremacists shared the pic as proof that protesters denouncing the "white power" rally were just as violent as the haters themselves.

Not true.

The pic was actually taken during a clash between police and protesters in Athens, Greece in 2009.

Watch the video below, and remember: everything you see on the internet isn't

CNN Trolls Trump With List Of Recent White House Debacles

CNN's Brooke Baldwin read a list today, in no particular order, of White House disasters from just the last four weeks of Donald Trump's presidency.

The list includes classic Trump hits such as hiring (and firing) "The Mooch," cutting Reince Priebus and Steve Bannon loose, shaming Attorney General Jeff Sessions, making up congratulatory phone calls from the Boy Scouts and the Mexican president, threatening nuclear war with North Korea and more.

Trump supporters will accuse CNN of bias, but the fact of the matter is America has never seen a White House in this much disarray. And, every single news story listed did happen.

Watch, and enjoy.

(h/t JoeMyGod)

Music Video: Neon Trees "Feel Good"

Neon Trees knows how to throw their own pop-colored pool party in their new music video, "Feel Good."

Shot on location at the uber-groovy Saguaro hotel in Palm Springs, CA, the pure-pop video is a high-energy shindig complete with patio dancing under neon colored skies, all wrapped up in a retro-tinged package.

As has often been the case, pop music lyrics can capture our prevailing societal current, and frontman Tyler Glenn's message is clear.

“Thematically it's essentially me saying 'enough' of feeling bad all the time. Late last year I was waking up each day, but I couldn't wait to get back to bed. It took so much effort to just feel ok. I turned to music like I always do, and wrote "Feel Good" at a time when I was feeling pretty low. I think beyond who's right and who's wrong about everything going on in the world, there's a human desire in all of us to feel ok, to 'Feel Good.' That's one truth everyone can agree on."

"Feel Good" marks Neon Trees' first new music in more than two years.

Watch the TGIF-worthy video below.

Steve Bannon Out As White House Chief Strategist

UPDATE: As predicted, Bannon has already returned to the alt-right news site, Breitbart. He told Bloomberg Businessweek that he plans to fight for Trump “against his opponents ― on Capitol Hill, in the media, and in corporate America.”

“If there’s any confusion out there, let me clear it up: I’m leaving the White House and going to war,” he added.

The New York Times is reporting that Donald Trump has made the decision to remove right-wing nationalist Steve Bannon from his role as White House chief strategist.

The president and senior White House officials were debating when and how to dismiss Mr. Bannon. The two administration officials cautioned that Mr. Trump is known to be averse to confrontation within his inner circle, and could decide to keep on Mr. Bannon for some time.

As of Friday morning, the two men were still discussing Mr. Bannon’s future, the officials said. A person close to Mr. Bannon insisted the parting of ways was his idea, and that he had submitted his resignation to the president on Aug. 7, to be announced at the start of this week, but the move was delayed after the racial unrest in Charlottesville, Va.

Mr. Bannon had clashed for months with other senior West Wing advisers and members of the president’s family.

For months, there have been reports from behind-the-scenes that the West Wing has endured endless friction between Bannon and his White House colleagues.

In addition to bad mouthing other White House staff, his image on the cover of Time Magazine and rumors of being the "shadow president" didn't do him any favors in Trump's eyes.

Also, on August 16, Bannon gave a self-initiated interview to The American Prospect where he downplayed the idea that Trump would ever resort to a full-on military response to North Korea, saying, “Until somebody solves the part of the equation that shows me that 10 million people in Seoul don’t die in the first 30 minutes from conventional weapons, I don’t know what you’re talking about, there’s no military solution here, they got us.”

Expect to see some positive "spin" that attempts to send him out into the private sector continuing as a Trump advocate.

News Round-Up: August 18, 2017

Some news items you may have missed:

• Germany's Olympic javelin team (above) offers us a good reason to talk about the country without having to mention "nazis." Check out this one minute video from the hunky gentlemen from Germany.

• Two lawsuits in Northern Ireland challenging the current ban on marriage equality have been dismissed. The judge in both cases ruled the ban does not violate LGBT couples' rights.

• Apple is donating $2 million to anti-hate groups, the Anti-Defamation League and the Southern Poverty Law Center.

• On the same day, both the American Cancer Society and the Cleveland Clinic have canceled their planned gala events at Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago venue. A local Chamber of Commerce official told the press, “The glitter, the shine has gone from the club and I can’t help but think there will be more fallout from it.”

• Openly gay former American Idol contestant Clay Aiken laments his past defense of Donald Trump:

The Wrap is reporting Glenn Close is in advanced talks to star in a film adaptation of the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical Sunset Boulevard. Close won the Tony Award for Best Actress in a Musical for her performance in 1994 and recently ended an enormously successful revival run on Broadway.

• Australian song bird Dannii Minogue dropped her new dance tune last week, "Holding On," and the title/lyrics couldn't be more appropriate for the times. Listen below:

Tina Fey Advises Sheet-Caking To Cope With Neo-Nazi Rallies

On last night's summer edition of Saturday Night Live's "Weekend Update," University of Virginia graduate shared her thoughts on the violent racist rally in Charlottesville. Along the way, she calls out Donald Trump, Ann Coulter and Speaker of the House Paul Ryan.

She also offered her own special technique for coping with neo-nazi get-togethers; a practice she calls "sheet-caking."

“I would urge people this Saturday, instead of participating in the screaming matches and potential violence, find a local business you support. Maybe a Jewish run bakery or African-American run bakery, and order a cake with the American flag on it, and just eat it. Sheet-caking is a grassroots movement, Colin. Most of the women I know have been doing it once a week since the election.”

Along the way she added:

“Part of me hopes these neo-Nazis do try it in New York City. I hope they do try and get their ham salad kicked out of them by a bunch of drag queens. Cause you know what a drag queen still is? A six foot four black man.”

“Who drove the car into the crowd, Hillary’s emails?”

We all can use some laughs these days, and Fey brings the big-time tasty humor.

Watch below and enjoy.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Song Of The Day: Pink "What About Us"

Pink's striking new music video for "What About Us?" is as stunning as it is timely.

Making a powerful political statement, "What About Us?" puts the focus squarely on the communities whose rights are in danger in Donald Trump's America: minorities, same-sex couples, and immigrants.

We are problems that want to be solved
We are children that need to be loved
We were willin', we came when you called
But man, you fooled us, enough is enough
What about us?
What about all the times you said you had the answers?

The video was directed by Georgia Hudson, accompanied by evocative choreography via the Goldenboyz.

And, there's a gay relationship center stage for much of the video.

And as Pink was releasing the video, MTV announced she will receive the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award at the 2017 Video Music Awards on Aug. 27.

I'm a big fan of Pink. I loved the song when she first revealed it a few weeks ago. But she puts the disenfranchisement of many Americans in the spotlight here.

Which makes me love her even more.

Watch below:

KKK Leader To Univision: "We Killed 6 Million Jews, 11 Million Immigrants Is Nothing"

Christopher Barker, KKK leader

"We killed 6 million Jews, 11 million (undocumented immigrants) is nothing."

Those were the words of Christopher Barker, a leader of the Ku Klux Klan's 'Loyal White Knights' during an interview with Univision's late night news anchor, Ilia Calderon, for the show AquĆ­ y Ahora.

"We're going to burn you," said Barker. "To me, you're a ni**er," he added.

No doubt Mr. Barker is one of those "very fine people" Donald Trump has been defending for several days.

Watch below.

(h/t JoeMyGod)

Poll: Majority Disapprove Of Trump's Response To Charlottesville Violence

According to a new CBS News poll, a majority of Americans - 55% - disapprove of Donald Trump's handling of the white supremacists' violent rally in Charlottesville last weekend.

But, among Republicans,  67% approve of the Trumpster's comments on the issue.

The poll began Monday night, before Trump's contentious press conference Tuesday, and continued through Wednesday. The disapproval numbers ticked up after his comments to reporters asserting there were "fine people" on both sides of the clash between neo-nazis and counter-protesters.

Additionally, only 12% of those polled feel Trump's policies promote racial unity, while 44% say his comments stoke further racial division.

Trump Laments The Loss Of Beautiful & Cultural Racist Monuments

Donald Trump's latest Twitter rant bemoans the loss of "history, "culture," and "beauty" when Confederate monuments are removed from public parks.

Here's an idea: take all the statues dedicated to Confederate racism and put them in the lobby of Trump Hotels. How's that?

As one Twitterer notes, Germany certainly didn't leave monuments to Hitler standing.

And, just to remind: If this is all about "beauty" and "history," what was this chanting of "Fuck you, faggots" during the Charlottesville debacle?

Charlottesville Nazi Strips His "White Power" Costume To Escape Protesters

Documentary-maker C.J. Hunt was in Charlottesville this past weekend to finish a doc on Confederate monuments.

Caught up in the violent turmoil of Saturday's neo-nazi events, he came across a young white supremacist who came running by him, clearly separated from his pack and afraid.

Via GQ Magazine:

It was Saturday, and the police had finally called for everyone to clear the park. As I filmed officers opening up a blocked street, a young man ran into view, screaming for help. He wore the khaki-and-white uniform of the white nationalist group Vanguard America. He had been separated from them and was being chased by at least one protester. He ripped off his shirt and begged the crowd for mercy. He wasn’t actually into white power, you see.

"Barely,” he clarified to me. As he shoved his polo shirt into a plastic bag, the fear on his face settled into a smirk. “It’s kind of a fun idea,” he explained. “Just being able to say ‘white power,’ you know?”

I didn’t know. But by the look of things, the fun of shouting “white power” stopped as soon as he was threatened with the same violence his group brought to bear on others. Cut off from the pack, forced to face the consequences of his inflammatory behavior, he found escape in a costume change.

Hunt goes on to note that the simple ability to shed his white supremacist skin demonstrates, in part, the white privilege the alt-right denies exists. People of color have no access to such immediate camouflage. The privilege to disappear by removing a shirt.

Watch below as the young neo-nazi explains before he walks off with a smirk.

Just Because...

Sometimes, on the journey of life, you've just got to take a pit-stop.

(via Instagram)

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Just Because...

Happy Hump Day!

I'm inside a dark theater these days, so I'm not seeing much sunshine.

This brightened my day, though.

(via Instagram)

Trump's Twisted Equivalency Of Neo-Nazis & Those Who Protest Them

Jake Tapper of CNN sums up Trump's twisted version of reality that attempts to equate neo-nazis and those who protest them.

NY Daily News: Pressure Of Presidency Getting Under Trump's "Very Thin Skin"

The editorial board of the New York Daily News goes after Donald Trump in today's edition:

Donald Trump launched the Civil War’s Battle of Fifth Ave. in a staggering display of verbal weaponry Tuesday — and America lost.

In no particular order, Trump took aim at the truth, history, decency, equal justice, fair play and common courtesy in a freewheeling assault on core American values that confirms his utter unfitness for the high office it is our misfortune he occupies.

Not least on display: the pressure of the job is getting under his very thin skin.

Rebooting his Saturday blame of “many sides” for “hate, bigotry and violence,” Trump then smeared counter-protesters like Heyer — who came to support the city’s decision and stand against the retrograde forces of the alt-right Trump fans — by saying they came armed and looking for trouble.


For good measure, Trump has enormously complicated the prosecution of accused Charlottesville killer James Fields by calling him a “murderer,” creating an opportunity for lawyers for Fields to argue their client cannot get a fair trial now. Not bad for 15 minutes.

After the spectacle, as Trump continued to spout off even as he heading for the elevators, behind him dourly lurked his new chief of staff, Gen. John Kelly, brought aboard to bring some control and order to the chaos. Mission definitely not accomplished, sir.

(h/t JoeMyGod)

Seth Meyers On Trump's "Clinically Insane" Press Conference

Seth Meyers is not suffering President Trump lightly after the Donald stunned the country at a Tuesday afternoon press conference asserting that the violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, should be blamed on “both sides” — alt-right white supremacists and counter-protesters.

From a segment titled, "Breaking Crazy," the Late Night host went after the Trumpster:

“President Trump gave a press conference this afternoon that can only be described as clinically insane. You know that list of side effects at the end of a pharmaceutical ad? He apparently has all of them.”

"Normally when someone is talking that level of crazy, Batman crashes through the ceiling and punches him."

Watch below:

Barack Obama Sets Record For Most 'Liked' Tweet In History

President Barack Obama

This is certain to drive Donald Trump insane.

As he displayed an appalling lack of moral courage taking days to denounce the white supremacists' violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, this past weekend, an uplifting tweet from President Obama became the most "Liked" in Twitter history.

On Saturday evening, Obama shared a Nelson Mandela quote: “No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin or his background or his religion…”

It became the tweet seen 'round the world.

At this writing, the tweet has been 'Liked" over 3.1 million times, and retweeted by 1.2 million people.

Texas: "Bathroom Bill" Dies Again As Special Legislative Session Ends

From NBC News:

A Texas "bathroom bill" targeting transgender people died again late Tuesday along with many of Republican Gov. Greg Abbott's summer demands as an already bruising legislative session was derailed by Republican backbiting that could preview an even nastier 2018 primary season.

It is the second time that North Carolina-style bathroom restrictions have failed to pass in Texas, and Abbott gave no indication he would order weary lawmakers to stay in Austin and try again - which would risk a third failure over what has erupted into one of the most high-profile bills in any U.S. legislature.

Corporate heavyweights from Amazon to Exxon Mobil lined up against the measure, as did some top law enforcement agencies, and opponents celebrated the latest failure despite the support from the governor and influential social conservatives who drive GOP politics and primaries in Texas.

"Today's victory shows what can happen when transgender Americans and their allies stay vigilant and push back against legislation that helps no one and harms many," said Sarah Kate Ellis, president and CEO of GLAAD, a national LGBT rights group.

JoDee Winterhof, senior vice president for policy and political affairs at the Human Rights Campaign, issued a statement which read in part, “We hope that this time, this issue remains settled: Texans don’t want harmful, anti-transgender legislation. First and foremost, these bills were defeated because of the many voices that came out in opposition, saying, ‘don’t discriminate in the Lone Star State.’

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Trump Defends White Supremacists: "Two Sides To A Story"

I'm. Just. Stunned.

From The New York Times:

President Trump on Tuesday insisted that he did nothing wrong on Saturday when he declined to specifically condemn Nazi and white supremacist groups, asserting that “before I make a statement, I like to know the facts.”

In a long, combative exchange with reporters at Trump Tower, the president repeatedly rejected a torrent of bipartisan criticism for waiting several days before naming the right-wing groups and placing blame on “many sides” for the violence that ended with the deaths of a young woman after a car crashed into a crowd.

Mr. Trump repeated that assertion on Tuesday, criticizing “alt-left” groups that he claimed were “very, very violent” when they sought to confront the nationalist and Nazi groups that had gathered in Charlottesville, Virginia to protest the removal of a statue of Robert E. Lee from a park. He said there is “blame on both sides.”

Conservative Pundit Equates Nazi Flags With LGBTQ Pride/Rainbow Flags

Conservative columnist and failed Republican candidate for Congress, Star Parker, told Fox and Friends' co-host Steve Doocy that she agreed with Donald Trump’s initial claim that the violence and bigotry seen in Charlottesville over the weekend came “from many sides,” saying Trump was "on point."

Parker then made an attempt at putting white supremacists who carry Nazi flags and drive cars through crowds of people with LGBTQ Pride goers who carry rainbow flags.

“What’s really interesting, and really incredible irony here, is the same people that are demanding that the Confederate flag comes down are the same people that are insisting that the rainbow flag goes up.”

“These two flags represent the exact same thing. That certain people groups are not welcome here. So if Nancy Pelosi wants to say that we’re going to start shutting down First Amendment rights of a certain group of people, then what happens the next time that the homosexuals want to walk through an American city and protest and counter protesters come out?”

It seems to have slipped my mind the total number of deaths that occurred on Saturday at the hands of LGBQs driving cars through crowds of people. Can someone remind me?

It will come as no surprise that Parker has a long history of attacking the LGBTQ community, often describing us as “those choosing the homosexual lifestyle.”

Scaramucci: Trump Should Have Said 'White Supremacist' Sooner

The record holder for shortest term as White House Communications Director, Anthony "The Mooch" Scaramucci, appeared on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert to offer his insights on the current "alt-right" situation in the West Wing.

"The Mooch" told Colbert that if it were up to him presidential strategist (and "white nationalist") Steve Bannon would be cut loose, but added, "It's not up to me."

Scaramucci also underscored his belief that while Trump is a "compassionate" man, Scaramucci feels the president should have spoken out more forcefully (and sooner) regarding the recent white supremacist violence in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Watch below.

Trump Covers NY Daily News

Because, of course...

From the New York Daily News:

After relentless pressure spanning the political spectrum, President Trump grudgingly condemned white supremacists, the KKK and neo-Nazis for Saturday’s violence in Charlottesville, Va.

“Racism is evil,” Trump said during a brief address at the White House on Monday. “And those that cause violence in its name are criminals and thugs, including the KKK, neo-Nazis, white supremacists and other hate groups that are repugnant to everything we hold dear as Americans.”

Hours later, he took to Twitter to complain that his belated repudiation of hate groups wasn’t met with more acclaim.

“Made additional remarks on Charlottesville and realize once again that the #Fake News Media will never be satisfied...truly bad people!” he wrote.

Monday, August 14, 2017

Just Because...

(Alex Abramov via Instagram)

Trump Approval Falls To Lowest Level In History Of Gallup Tracking Poll

In the aftermath of the white supremacist violence in Charlottesville over the weekend and Donald Trump's woefully lacking sense of moral leadership, his approval rating in Gallup's Daily Tracking poll has dropped to the lowest level ever seen in the history of the poll.

Approve 34%
Disapprove 61%

Under Pressure, Donald Trump Finally Denounces KKK/White Supremacists

Donald Trump took finally issued a statement today denouncing the violence and bigotry of white supremacists in Charlottesville, Virginia, this past weekend.

From the New York Times:

“Racism is evil,” Mr. Trump said. “And those who cause violence in its name are criminals and thugs, including the K.K.K., neo-Nazis, white supremacists and other hate groups that are repugnant to everything we hold dear as Americans.”

Several of the president’s top advisers, including his new Chief of Staff John F. Kelly, pressed Mr. Trump to issue a more forceful rebuke after his comment on Saturday that the violence in Charlottesville was initiated by “many sides,” prompting nearly universal criticism.

It's notable that Trump framed his condemnation with "as I said on Saturday," which he did not. But we all know that this is a man who never admits he is wrong.

Clearly loathe to issue any statement against white nationalists and bigots, Trump began his remarks with a lengthy self-congratulation on the economy.

That would be the economy he inherited from President Obama.

Donald Trump's full statement today via NBC News:

I’m in Washington today to meet with my economic team about trade policy and major tax cuts and reform. We are renegotiating trade deals and making them good for the American worker. And it's about time.

Our economy is now strong. The stock market continues to hit record highs, unemployment is at a 16-year low, and businesses are more optimistic than ever before. Companies are moving back to the United States and bringing many thousands of jobs with them. We have already created over one million jobs since I took office.

We will be discussing economic issues in greater detail later this afternoon, but, based on the events that took place over the weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia, I would like to provide the nation with an update on the ongoing federal response to the horrific attack and violence that was witnessed by everyone.

I just met with FBI Director Christopher Wray and Attorney General Jeff Sessions. The Department of Justice has opened a civil rights investigation into the deadly car attack that killed one innocent American and wounded 20 others. To anyone who acted criminally in this weekend’s racist violence, you will be held fully accountable. Justice will be delivered.

As I said on Saturday, we condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry, and violence. It has no place in America.

And as I have said many times before: No matter the color of our skin, we all live under the same laws, we all salute the same great flag, and we are all made by the same almighty God. We must love each other, show affection for each other, and unite together in condemnation of hatred, bigotry, and violence. We must rediscover the bonds of love and loyalty that bring us together as Americans.

Racism is evil. And those who cause violence in its name are criminals and thugs, including the KKK, neo-Nazis, white supremacists, and other hate groups that are repugnant to everything we hold dear as Americans.

We are a nation founded on the truth that all of us are created equal. We are equal in the eyes of our Creator. We are equal under the law. And we are equal under our Constitution. Those who spread violence in the name of bigotry strike at the very core of America.

Two days ago, a young American woman, Heather Heyer, was tragically killed. Her death fills us with grief, and we send her family our thoughts, our prayers, and our love.

We also mourn the two Virginia state troopers who died in service to their community, their commonwealth, and their country. Troopers Jay Cullen and Burke Bates exemplify the very best of America, and our hearts go out to their families, their friends, and every member of American law enforcement.

These three fallen Americans embody the goodness and decency of our nation. In times such as these, America has always shown its true character: responding to hate with love, division with unity, and violence with an unwavering resolve for justice.

As a candidate, I promised to restore law and order to our country, and our federal law enforcement agencies are following through on that pledge. We will spare no resource in fighting so that every American child can grow up free from violence and fear. We will defend and protect the sacred rights of all Americans, and we will work together so that every citizen in this blessed land is free to follow their dreams in their hearts, and to express the love and joy in their souls.

Thank you. God bless you. And God bless America. Thank you very much.

Merck CEO Quits President's Manufacturing Council Over Tepid Charlottesville Remarks

Citing a responsibility to "take a stand against intolerance and extremism,” Merck CEO Kenneth Frazier quit Donald Trump’s American Manufacturing Council on Monday in response to Trump's woefully tepid statements regarding the violent hate rally that took place in Charlottesville, Virginia, this past weekend.

"America's leaders must honor our fundamental views by clearly rejecting expressions of hatred, bigotry and group supremacy, which run counter to the American ideal that all people are created equal. As CEO of Merck and as a matter of personal conscience, I feel a responsibility to take a stand against intolerance and extremism."

Trump responded by attacking Frazier on Twitter: “Now that Ken Frazier of Merck Pharma has resigned from President’s Manufacturing Council, he will have more time to LOWER RIPOFF DRUG PRICES!”

As many have noted, it took less than an hour to slap back at Frazier, but no word against white supremacists in three days.

As this Twitter user points out, Frazier was welcomed as a member of Trump's Manufacturing Council. Did Trump think of Frazier as a ripoff artist all this time?

Top 10 Paid Celebs On Instagram

Ever wonder what celebrities do with all those social media followers?

Make money! compiles a list of the "Top 10 Paid Celebrities for Sponsored Posts on Instagram" in 2017.

Selena Gomez tops the list as she earns a whopping $550,000 per sponsored post on her Instagram.

Check out the rest of the Top 10 below.

No Bail For Nazi Suspect James Fields

James Alex Fields Jr.
James Alex Fields, the young man who allegedly drove his car through a crowd of counter-protesters during the hate rally on Saturday in Charlottesville, Virginia, has been arraigned without bail.

Via USA Today:

James Alex Fields Jr., 20, appeared in Charlottesville General District Court by video conference, where a judge read out the charges that include one count of second-degree murder, several counts of malicious wounding and one count of hit and run.

Clad in a striped gray and white shirt, Fields was subdued while answering questions from Judge Robert Downer. Fields said he could not afford a lawyer, and Downer assigned private attorney Charles Weber to the case.

Downer said he could not appoint a public defender due to a conflict of interest —someone linked to the public defender's office was injured in the crash Saturday. Fields’ next court date will be August 25.

Heather Heyer, 32, was killed and 19 people were injured Saturday when a Dodge Challenger rear-ended a sedan, which then hit a minivan that had slowed to allow the counter-protesters to cross at an intersection, Charlottesville police said. The impact pushed the vehicles into the crowd, police said in a statement. The Challenger fled the scene, but officers stopped it a short time later and arrested Fields, police said.

The article goes on to note that Fields apparently has a fascination with Nazism, idolized Adolf Hitler and radical convictions regarding race.

According to CBS News, Fields' mother knew he was going to an "alt-right" event but didn't understand it would be a white supremacist rally.
Site Meter