Demi Lovato Playing NYC Pride, Anti-Gay GOP Candidate Was A Drag Queen: Today In Gay


Pop star-actress Demi Lovato is jumping into Pride season with both feet: The “Heart Attack” singer has been tapped as a Grand Marshal at the 2014 L.A. Pride parade on June 8, and will perform at the legendary Dance on the Pier at NYC Pride on June 29.

“It’s such an honor to be a part of both LA and NYC Pride celebrations this year,” says Lovato. “I have been an active advocate of the LGBT community and am wholly committed to supporting individuality and being comfortable in one’s own skin. I am thrilled to be a part of both events as they are a wonderful celebration of independence and self-confidence.”

Patti DiLuigi of L.A. Pride calls the singer “an amazing role model for today’s youth, both LGBT and non-LGBT, for her activism in the area of equality, positive messaging on body image, and level of openness with her struggles.”

The Dance on the Pier is NYC Pride’s largest fundraising event and draws thousands to the New York waterfront. Past performers have included Cher, Whitney Houston, Jennifer Lopez and Janet Jackson.

Screen Shot 2014-05-05 at 2.34.10 PMJoel McHale ribbed the President as host of Saturday’s White House Correspondents Dinner, but also lobbed a few barbs at the LGBT community.

Joking about  his stint on E! Network’s The Soup, McHale teased “Republicans, E! is the network your closeted gay son likes to watch. Democrats, E! is the network your openly gay son likes to watch.”

He also referred to All In host Chris Hayes as “that lesbian on MSNBC ” and described House of Cards was the best performance by a Southern senator “since Lindsay Graham played Blanche DuBois in A Streetcar Named Desire.”

steve wiles.jpgWe’re used to discovering that anti-LGBT politicians are secretly gay themselves, but Steve Wiles, a GOP candidate for the North Carolina state senate, threw us for a loop: It turns out Wiles, who opposes marriage equality, was previously a drag queen by the name of Mona Sinclair.

The Winston-Salem Journal dug up the goods on Wiles/Sinclair, 34, who first denied the connection but later came clean about being the show director and host at Winston’s Club Odyssey from 2002 to 2010.

“My job was embarrassing—I had to have a job! Nobody died, leaving me a millionaire capable of living in North Carolina’s most expensive neighborhood,” he declared in a Facebook post that has since been deleted. “One thing I will say, I learned from my mistakes.”

Wiles, who will not discuss his sexual orientation, says he’s not anti-gay but considers marriage a religious institution. “State control of the institution of marriage is unconstitutional.”

Since the news broke, his campaign website, Facebook page and Twitter handle have been taken down.

Nate-Berkus-Jeremiah-Brent-2-600x450Interior-design guru Nate Berkus wasn’t about to let his wedding be anything less than stellar: On Saturday, the former talk-show host wed  fiancé Jeremiah Brent in the first same-sex ceremony at the New York Public Library.

Berkus, 42, is best known for his appearances offering design advice on The Oprah Winfrey Show. Brent, 29, is also an interior designer and TV personality. The pair appeared together in a recent campaign for US fashion brand Banana Republic.

Among the 220 guests at the ceremony were Oprah Winfrey, celebrity chef Rachael Ray and Cougar Town‘s Busy Philipps.

Brent proposed to Berkus last year at Machu Picchu in Peru. “I fell apart – like full ugly-girl kind of cry,” Berkus told People. “I mean, my kids are screwed. They are going to say, ‘Dad proposed to dad in Peru. What are you going to do for your significant other?”

gene robinsonIn less joyful marriage news, Bishop Gene Robinson—the first openly gay bishop in the Episcopal Church, is splitting from husband Mark Andrew. 

“As you can imagine, this is a difficult time for us – not a decision entered into lightly or without much counseling,” the couple said in a joint statement. “I’m sure that you will understand the private nature of this change in our lives and our commitment to keeping those details appropriately private. Our life and ministry among you continues to be something that both of us count as an honor and blessing.

Robinson and Andrew have been together for more than 25 years, and married for four.

“It is at least a small comfort to me, as a gay rights and marriage equality advocate, to know that like any marriage, gay and lesbian couples are subject to the same complications and hardships that afflict marriages between heterosexual couples,” Robinson, 66, wrote in the Daily Beast. “My belief in marriage is undiminished by the reality of divorcing someone I have loved for a very long time, and will continue to love even as we separate. Love can endure, even if a marriage cannot.”

Dan Avery is a writer-editor who focuses on culture, breaking news and LGBT rights. His work has appeared in Newsweek, The New York Times, Time Out New York, The Advocate and elsewhere.