article placeholder

[Interview] Log Cabin Republicans look to the future with new executive director

Log Cabin Republicans Executive Director Gregory Angelo

The Log Cabin Republicans, a political organization that advocates LGBT inclusion in the Republican Party, announced late last week that interim Executive Director Gregory Angelo will continue in the role permanently.

“I started going to Log Cabin meetings in 2008,” Angelo tells GA Voice. “At the time, the local chapter was in the midst of rebirth of sorts and I saw an organization that was doing great work that I believed in, but I thought could benefit from having someone with media expertise that was able to amplify the work the organization was doing on the state level.”

Angelo eventually became the chairman of the New York chapter of the organization and helped work toward New York's marriage law, the only marriage equality bill that had ever passed under a Republican-controlled state legislature.

article placeholder

Melissa Carter: Love (not sex) at the DNC

Melissa Carter

My friend had the opportunity to attend the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte earlier this month, and I asked her to be my guest columnist and give some insight into what impacted her about the trip. These are her words: What has the Democratic Party done for us that we have never been able to do for ourselves?

During the three days of the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, nearly every major speech openly celebrated love, no matter whether that love comes in the form of two guys, two girls or a guy and a girl.

One after another, speakers walked up to the podium and found a way to remind gay voters that they are loved, accepted and needed by the Democratic Party.

article placeholder

Local activists stage Chick-fil-A ‘Kiss In’ demonstrations

Chick-fil-A protest

It was a very small crowd that showed up at the Chick-fil-A on Piedmont Road near the Lindbergh MARTA station. Jimmy Moss, 39, and his partner Sebastian Steele, 38, took a photo of themselves with their smartphone at about 12:30 p.m. Friday. They said they wanted to show their family and friends that eating at Chick-fil-A is not just about free speech.

"I've seen lot of my family and friends on Facebook and they really didn't understand when they come to Chick-fil-A that they were supporting not just freedom of speech but actually giving money to a company that gives money that keeps me from having rights," Steele said.

"I felt strongly about it and wanted to get a picture of us. We've been together seven years,and had a civil union seven years ago. And for better or worse, for richer or poorer, we've done all of that and I think that's what marriage is all about  and that's what we got," Steele added.

article placeholder

Photos: Atlanta HRC Dinner marks 25 years of equality fight

 Actor Sean Hayes at the Atlanta HRC Dinner

Brighter than the “super moon” that was out on the same night, Atlanta’s LGBT community shined in record numbers at Atlanta Human Rights Campaign Gala at the Hyatt Regency Saturday evening. In keeping with this year’s theme of “25 Years of Fighting for Equality,” activists from the past and present were honored.

The event raises money for the Human Rights Campaign’s national fight for LGBT rights. It began with a rousing performance by Grammy nominee Frenchie Davis.  She was followed by an uplifting video montage showing just how far the LGBT community has come since the first Atlanta HRC Dinner was held 25 years ago.  The crowd of over 1,100 roared with approval when hometown hero U.S. Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.) was shown in the clip.  

“I’m moved that the people appreciate what I’ve tried to do over the years.  I feel so blessed,” Lewis told GA Voice, asked how it felt to hear the room erupt into such applause at the mere mention of his name.

article placeholder

[Video] Mitt Romney finally gets ‘glitter bombed’

Mitt Romney gets glitter bombed

It was bound to happen. Former Mass. Gov. Mitt Romney was finally the target of the much-dreaded “glitter bomb.” During a campaign stop in Minnesota, Romney was the target of not one, but two separate instances involving gay rights activists.

The mastermind behind the bombing was Robert Erickson, a Minnesota gay rights activist who's made a habit of ruining a perfectly good GOP campaign event by showering presidential candidates with glitter.

Erickson has targeted Congresswoman Michele Bachmann (R-Tx.), former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich and former Sen. Tim Pawlenty (R-Minn.) with glitter bombs during events in his home state. He also led the barbarian horde into the Christian-based counseling clinic run by Bachmann's husband in protest of the clinic's use of “reparative” therapy.

article placeholder

Cyndi Lauper’s ‘True Colors’

Musician and LGBT rights activist Cyndi Lauper

Cyndi Lauper released her first album in 1983, instantly becoming one of the most recognizable musicians of the decade. From amusing hits like “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” and “She Bop” to ballads like “Time after Time” and “All Through the Night,” the album won her a Grammy for Best New Artist and legions of devoted fans.

The album’s title, “She’s So Unusual,” proved particularly apt for gay fans — not only were Lauper’s quirky style and knock-out vocals far from typical, but so was her outspoken support for LGBT rights from the early days of her career.

article placeholder

Election: Attorney General preview

The race to replace Attorney General Thurbert Baker, who is running for governor, is the only statewide race where both Georgia Equality and the Atlanta Stonewall Democrats issued endorsements.

Both LGBT political groups backed Rep. Rob Teilhet, a Democrat. As a member of the Georgia House, he voted against the 2004 state constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage.

“He is with us the majority of the time,” said GE Executive Director Jeff Graham, noting that Teilhet supports “basic fairness issues in terms of employment protection, supporting basic rights and existing law as it relates to our families and relationships.”

None of the candidates returned the Georgia Voice survey.

article placeholder

Election: Governor’s race offers little positive for gay voters

None of the candidates to be Georgia’s next governor have campaigned for LGBT votes, although several have long — mostly negative — records on LGBT issues.

Most candidates declined to respond to surveys from the Georgia Voice and LGBT political groups, while several Republican candidates have tried to use their opposition to gay rights as campaign strategies.

Among the major Democratic candidates, former Gov. Roy Barnes has the clearest, generally positive record of not shutting out gay constituents, largely due to his former term in office.

Among the Republicans, Insurance Commissioner John Oxendine has continued his outspoken opposition to fairness for LGBT couples in his bid for higher office, while former U.S. Rep. Nathan Deal has attempted to use former Secretary of State Karen Handel’s past support for issues like domestic partner benefits against her.

article placeholder

‘Stonewall Uprising’ explores turning point in LGBT history

“Before Stonewall” ended with the Stonewall Riots. “After Stonewall” began with them. Those documentaries from 1984 and 1999 respectively were reissued in a two-DVD set for Pride Month.

“Stonewall Uprising” sounds like it might have been called “During Stonewall,” but an opening title reveals the scarcity of photos and film footage of the actual events. Instead the new documentary uses reenactments and generic materials from the period, in addition to interviews with those involved.

Based in part on David Carter’s book “Stonewall: The Riots That Sparked the Gay Revolution” (with Carter helping vet the interviewees), “Stonewall Uprising” is mostly a variation on “Before Stonewall.” Except for a brief introduction the June 28, 1969, raid that triggers the riots doesn’t occur until 50 minutes into the film. The last half-hour is about the raid, the riots and the aftermath.