We may as well start with a Jason Collins roundup. Martina Navratilova calls Collins coming out a “game changer” for GLBT youth. She also notes he carries a different risk than when she came out, “When I came out, in 1981, I didn’t have much public support and I know I lost endorsements. But I never had to worry about losing my job. In tennis, there are no bosses, no general managers and no coaches who can keep players from competing. So I was safe in that regard. For team sports athletes, this is not the case. A homophobic coach at any level — high school, college or pros — could keep a player from playing.”
I had been wondering why the entire Clinton clan had come out in support of Collins, but it made sense once I realized that Collins went to Stanford with Chelsea. Bill Clinton says “I have known Jason Collins since he was Chelsea’s classmate and friend at Stanford. Jason’s announcement today is an important moment for professional sports and in the history of the LGBT community. It is also the straightforward statement of a good man who wants no more than what so many of us seek: to be able to be who we are; to do our work; to build families and to contribute to our communities.”
Meanwhile, as you’re reading this, George Stephanopolous should be conducting the first television interview with Collins on Good Morning America.
And Boston Pride, which served as an inspiration for Collins to come out, has officially asked him to be the Grand Marshall in their parade.
And now for something completely different – glow in the dark sheep.
Larry Kramer is to receive a special Tony Award, the Isabelle Stevenson Award, for people who have made a substantial contribution to humanitarian, social services or charitable organizations. Kramer previously won a Tony for the revival of The Normal Heart in 2011.
Here’s a head scratcher. A man with Tourette’s Syndrome was banned from his flight to Puerto Rico after he had a panic attack at the gate and repeatedly said “bomb” involuntarily. The pilot judged him to be a flight risk and stopped him from boarding. Jet Blue says that they’re giving him a free roundtrip flight to make everything right. Probably on another airline.
Federal student aid is going to start accounting for income from both same sex parents for the 20140-2015 school year for the first time. “Mother” and “Father” will be replaced on the forms with “Parent 1” and “Parent 2” which will no doubt drive wingnuts crazy. The change is being made to take into account each family’s unique configuration and make the award of aid more fair.
How do big companies like Facebook, Google, and Twitter define hate speech? When do you censor as opposed to siding with free speech? Meet The Deciders.
The Vatican will not conduct an inquiry into the alleged sexual misconduct of Cardinal Keith O’Brien. “When an investigation takes place people expect some kind of public result of the investigation, but there is just no way there is going to be some kind of public examination and a published report on this matter. The Church doesn’t work that way.” Just sweep it under the rug, with everything else.
Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShip 2 conducted the first test under rocket power yesterday, breaking the sound barrier and climbing to 55,000 feet, paving the way for orbital flights by the end of the year. I’m currently accepting gift certificates for a flight.
Northern Ireland has rejected a marriage equality bill.
An upstate New York WalMart employee is facing prostitution charges after turning tricks in the store restroom. The encounters were allegedly set up on Craigslist, and police say he accepted money for sex from an undercover officer.
Tim Tebow has been dumped by the New York Jets. This wasn’t surprising given that the Jets now have six quarterbacks on the roster. They just picked up Geno Smith from my alma mater, West Virginia University in last week’s draft.
It turns out the military wasn’t censoring the Southern Baptist Convention as it was accused (although they have been censoring some GLBT blogs). The SBC website was infected with malware, which a filter caught and blocked. Whoops.
Gore Vidal didn’t believe in mixing sex with love. “Sex destroys relationships. Either one or the other loses interest.” Not if you’re doing it right.
Willie Nelson thinks that Peter Jackson should fire Sir Ian McKellen and hire him to play Gandalf in the remaining Hobbit movies. I’m not entirely sure that he can quite match the gravitas that Sir Ian brings to the role, but hell, he’s Willie Nelson!
ESPN’s Chris Broussard went on a rant about Jason Collins coming out, saying he can’t be a Christian because being gay is living in rebellion to God. LZ Granderson was also a guest on the show. It does beg the question of why ESPN brought Broussard on the show to speak on the subject at all, given that he’s gone off on anti-gay Christian rants before. Many have speculated they were jealous of Sports Illustrated getting the story and used this as a way to get the media to focus on them.
Of course, the day wouldn’t be complete without the AFA’s Bryan Fischer chiming in on Jason Collins, and basically warning NBA teams not to sign Collins because if the teammates were honest, neither they or their wives want a gay player checking themselves out in the shower. I think Bryan’s just jealous that nobody has checked him out in the shower in 50 years.
The first promo is up for America’s Got Talent, with Mel B and Heidi Klum judging. As always, you have hints of astonishing acts, but most of the footage here goes to WTF pieces of a man taunting a snake into striking a balloon he’s holding in his mouth. Because that’s a talent, rather than a mental condition.
Brent Spiner really doesn’t get enough credit for bringing Data to life on Star Trek: The Next Generation. As Sir Patrick Stewart notes in this clip from the season three BluRay release, the character deprived him of most of the tools an actor uses, but he still managed to convey so much.
There’s a new trailer out for Pacific Rim, which has the earth fighting for its life in giant robots against aliens from the sea floor. I’m aware that sentence didn’t really make much sense, but that’s the plot. The movie has everything – monsters, robots, and even a scientist who thinks we just need to understand the aliens. It followed the formula so well.