Sex has never been a particularly pleasant experience for me. It’s a fundamental part of being a gay man, of being a human being, but the “fun” part has always eluded me. Don’t get me wrong, I always enjoyed the bumping of proverbial uglies (I am a romantic at heart, after all) but the lead-up before and the fallout thereafter eclipsed that enjoyment. The hunt is exhausting. The encounter is fleeting. The loneliness seeps in. And then it begins anew. The cycle continues. Like all addictions, there’s a cycle.
For me, the process of hooking up has become an addiction. An addiction fueled by insecurity. The insecurity that comes with being a gay man. The insecurity that you’re not masculine enough when masculinity is demanded of you — absolutely demanded — as a matter of course from other gay men. “Masc musc” whimpers many a profile. Masculine. Muscular. Abs prominently on display. Face obscured or head completely decapitated. This is the faceless face of hooking up in the 21st century.
Actor Daniel Franzese marked the tenth anniversary of "Mean Girls" with an exclusive Cosmopolitan interview, offering some long-overdue insight into the sexuality of his wisecracking, "almost too gay to function" character, Damian.
Thirty years ago, the idea of finding LGBT representation in a mainstream superhero comic book seemed as far from reality as waking up with the ability to fly. An entertainment medium that once adopted a code forbidding even the mention of alternate sexual orientations, however, has evolved by leaps and single-bounds.
With heroes such as DC Comics’ lesbian caped crusader, Batwoman, and Marvel Comics’ gay teen power couple, Hulkling and Wiccan of the Young Avengers, a diverse spectrum of LGBT characters can currently be seen battling evil alongside icons such as Wonder Woman, Superman, and Wolverine. But while LGBT visibility in comics is growing faster than a speeding bullet, Hollywood’s unstoppable superhero scene is evolving at a snail’s pace. It’s an oversight that is beginning to raise the eyebrows of not only LGBT fans who desire to see a fundamental aspect of their lives reflected in the empowering fantasies the genre provides, but several of Hollywood’s biggest and rising stars as well.
LGBT rights are continuing to have an impact on politics in India.
Although the country shocked the world when it reinstated Section 377, its colonial-era law against homosexual sex in December 2013 that was originally struck down in 2009, the court decision has brought LGBT rights to the attention of India’s residents—and some are questioning the status quo.
Two of the political parties in India, the anti-corruption Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), and the ruling Indian National Congress, have included Section 377’s removal in their political agendas.
However, the party currently leading the polls, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has made no such declarations, and its president Rajnath Singh has said his party supports the upholding of Section 377. According to the Times of India, he said, “Gay sex is not natural and we cannot support something which is unnatural.”
RECENTLY, the High Court of Australia determined that individuals did not need to be male or female on their official documentation and that they in fact can be non-specific.
The judgment confirms that sex is not a binary concept for the purposes of the NSW legislation, which recognises that a person’s sex may be indeterminate. It will give hope and encouragement to those who identify as neither male or female in our society. Its guiding principles should assist other states in finding a way forward on these complex legal and administrative issues.
However, the case of Norrie, a non-gender specific individual, versus the NSW Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages did not happened overnight. Norrie’s journey began in early 2011, when global law firm DLA Piper was asked to represent a client who did not identify as either male or female. Norrie had previously applied to the Registrar to have a Details Recognition Certificate issued following a sex affirmation procedure, stating Norrie’s sex as “non-specific”. The Registrar initially issued a certificate with sex described as “not specified”, then invalidated the certificate and issued a certificate recording the client’s sex as “not stated”. Norrie then took the case to the Administrative Decisions Tribunal of NSW (ADT). Apart from some legal assistance from NSW upper house Greens MP David Shoebridge, Norrie had until this point been basically self-representing.
Unfortunately for Norrie, the appeal was unsuccessful and so the question was whether to appeal to the Full Panel of the ADT. It was then that DLA Piper was asked to assist with the appeal. As with all litigation, the decision to take on a case revolves around the merits of the case. Is there a real prospect that we could obtain a better outcome for our client? This requires a careful assessment of the case, the law, the evidence and in some cases, advice from counsel as to the likelihood of success in any appellate court or tribunal.
DLA Piper agreed to take on Norrie’s case on a pro bono basis, which means undertaking professional work voluntarily and without payment (or in some cases, at a reduced fee as a public service).
You may think you know a pair of pants when you buy ‘em, but denim’s true character isn’t revealed until your trou are well-loved, worn-in, and sudsed up a few times. Rather than just fade out like most pairs on the market — booooring — Betabrand’s new Gay Jeans (yup) have a technicolour surprise hiding underneath the regular indigo.
Wish every wash, the all-over dark blue hue will lighten up and rainbow threads underneath will begin to show through. Even then, it’s a actually a pretty subtle effect; you have to get up close to see how cool it looks.
There is a jar of white liquid. Written on the jar are the words, “POZ CUM.” The contents are poured directly into one of porn star Blue Bailey’s orifices — an orifice that is not his mouth.
This scene from Treasure Island Media’s new film, “Viral Loads,” is stoking controversy — even in the condom-eschewing straight porn industry — by fetishizing HIV and transmission risk. The film’s press release boasts, “Mansex is a virus, one that uses men as its host. Some try to resist it. Others embrace it as the source of life and meaning. We live to breed the sex-virus, to pass it on to every random anonymous dude we meet and fuck. It’s how we reproduce, man.” Of Bailey’s costars, the press release says, “Most are poz, some are neg. Who the fuck cares?”
Industry blogger Mike South wrote about the new film under the headline, “And You Thought Straight Porn Was Bad … .” A post on STR8UPGAYPORN opined, “Treasure Island Media isn’t really a gay pornography studio anymore, is it? Now, their business model is 100% focused on spreading infectious diseases.” He added that the production company “is in the business of terror and death (which is a weird thing to expect people to jerk off to),” and likened the release to a “snuff film.”
Thing is, Bailey is HIV-positive; he isn’t an HIV-negative performer being exposed to positive ejaculate. However, it’s theoretically possible that he could contract an HIV super-infection or other STIs from the activities in “Viral Loads.” What, I wondered, did Bailey make of this risk, the surrounding controversy and the film’s fetishization of HIV (and perhaps even the idea of — if not the actual, real-world — transmission of the virus)? I gave him a call to find out.
Songs about the LGBT community have charted with growing frequency in the past decade. A whole lot of straight artists, whether just looking for a hit or looking to support their LGBT fans, have written empowering songs urging fans to "Come on let your colors burst." Straight artists from Katy Perry ("Firework") to Kesha ("We R Who We R") have recorded "empowering" tracks that have taken flack from some critics as disingenuous.
Then, of course, there's the question of "Same Love" and the public mass marriage that went down at the Grammys this year. By all appearances, it was a huge boon for the gay community. But it was also a smash hit for a straight artist enjoying the kind of success gay artists don't receive nearly as often.
Allies are great, but it's easy to look at the charts and forget that there are actual LGBT folks singing gay anthems. These songs are so important because they're more authentic by definition, and the voices are more marginalized. Here are 19 LGBT musicians whose anthems — some of them real hits; some, under the radar favorites — have led a whole group of marginalized voices in song ...
Despite the president’s stated opposition, even his top advisers didn’t believe that he truly opposed allowing gay couples to marry. “He has never been comfortable with his position,” David Axelrod, then one of his closest aides, told me.
Indeed, long before Obama publicly stated that he was against same-sex marriage, he was on the record supporting it. As an Illinois State Senate candidate from Chicago’s liberal Hyde Park enclave, Obama signed a questionnaire in 1996 saying, “I favor legalizing same-sex marriages, and would fight efforts to prohibit such marriages.” But as his ambitions grew, and with them the need to appeal to a more politically diverse electorate, his position shifted.
University of Notre Dame student-athlete Matt Dooley has come a long way since waking up in a hospital bed following a failed suicide attempt three years ago. Although the senior tennis player was nervous when he started coming out as gay to his teammates last month, he has been met with an overwhelming show of support from teammates and coaches.
In a somewhat surprising step, Notre Dame even produced its own a video to show exactly how they felt about Dooley's pronouncement — and the results are pretty amazing.
One of the strangest things about the H.I.V. epidemic in the Deep South—from Louisiana to Alabama to Mississippi—is how easily most Americans have elided it, choosing instead to imagine that the disease is now an out-there, elsewhere epidemic. It’s a plague from some anterior time, some exterior continent, something our kids will read about in books or that we glimpse as history in the movie “Dallas Buyers Club.” Only recently, in the face of unrelenting statistics about the convergence of H.I.V./AIDS rates in the Deep South with almost every other relevant public-health risk—from obesity to heart disease and diabetes—have many of the mega-funders taken a different tack. They are learning that the people doing the grunt work of prevention, education, and treatment often do so in an environment of fierce hardships, the most obvious of which is a lack of funding.
Mike Huckabee doesn’t hate gay people — he just loves the Bible. “I’m not against anybody. I’m really not. I’m not a hater. I’m not homophobic,” Huckabee said Tuesday to an audience at the Iowa Faith and Freedom convention, reiterating his opposition to marriage equality. “I honestly don’t care what people do personally in their individual lives.
“When people say, ‘Why don’t you just kind of get on the right side of history?’ I said, ‘You’ve got to understand, this for me is not about the right side or the wrong side of history, this is the right side of the Bible, and unless God rewrites it, edits it, sends it down with his signature on it, it’s not my book to change,’” he explained.
This is a pretty absurd claim. Because of course Mike Huckabee is a homophobe! So is Ken Cuccinelli, Rick Santorum, Marsha Blackburn, Mitch McConnell, John Boehner, Jan Brewer and a great many other men and women who are currently in positions that allow them to influence and implement policy that sanctions or enacts blatant discrimination against LGBTQ people.
Even as Larry Kramer, the lifelong gay activist, worked with producer and director Ryan Murphy on the HBO adaptation of Kramer's 1985 play The Normal Heart, which premieres May 25, Kramer kept asking the question: Why did it take so long? Why, he lamented, did it take so long to make the play into a film?
In this technological age, cyber relationships have become a normal thing to hear about. With most of the world being connected on social media, gay guys especially have developed their own online personalities. Everything we are and everything we do becomes data. It was just a matter of time before guys around the globe found each other, but can online boyfriends truly last?
As someone who finds it hard to be in a long distance relationship, I can’t imagine what it’s like being separated by cyber space with only pictures and instant messaging to connect us. But this generation is used to having everything digital, even love. You’d be surprised how many gay guys I’ve spoken with who claim to have fallen in love with a man through his profile alone.
As a gay guy, stereotypes follow me everywhere I go. I’m not a fan of them nor do I encourage them in my own life, but it never ceases to amaze me how often we’re associated with such ideas even when we clearly don’t match the image. For gay guys who don’t fit the world’s interpretation of a homosexual, life can be a continuing cycle of coming outs.
I blame a lack of imagination in Hollywood, because butch ladies could make great characters. A blunt-spoken butch could easily fit the archetype of a fool who speaks truth to power. A wisecracking butch would make for an ideal sidekick. A hypercompetitive butch would be a fun villain, while a sensitive butch could be a hero. The only thing standing in the way is the complete and total inability of Hollywood to see uses for women as anything other than eye candy. Luckily for us, that’s sure to fall by the wayside any day now.
A BILL designed to regulate the geographical placement of billboard advertising in Queensland based on classification ratings was recently voted down after a heated debate in State Parliament that saw a campaign supporting LGBTI rights being compared to a banned bestiality advert.
The Classification of Publications (Billboard Advertising) and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2013 was introduced to the House of Representatives by Dalrymple state Katter’s Australian Party MP Shane Knuth in May last year.
The bill that was drafted by KAP aimed to give the government a regulatory framework for billboard advertisement using a geographical classification zoning policy in an effort to protect children from being exposed to sexualised material in areas where they frequent.
Amendments to the Classification of Publications Act 1991 put forward by KAP proposed that 15 and 20 kilometre zones be placed around “facilities frequented by children and families” for what they considered only G-rated advertising. Facilities mentioned included schools, shopping centres and bus stops.
This condition, along with several other disagreements over the way in which the regulation would be governed, costed for and carried out was mentioned by Attorney-General Jarrod Bleijie who voted against the bill, along with all other members of the Liberal-National and Labor parties.
As Bryan Singer contests allegations he sexually assaulted a 17-year-old teenager, one attendee of the Hollywood director’s infamous pool parties recalls wild nights of no clothes and lots of alcohol.
In gay company, use of the word “twink” is typically paired with a rolled eye and a condescending tone. At its most pejorative, the term describes a uniquely disposable kind of young gay man: Hairless, guileless, witless. The term’s namesake is Twinkie, a junk food containing shiny packaging, a sweet taste, and zero nutritional value.
It’s a label that mitigates the need for names or personalities or agency: “twinks” can be bussed into parties, thrown into pools, put into a tiny Speedo—or no tiny Speedo at all—and ornamentally placed around the water’s edge like living, breathing, giggling statuary.
Such is the purported scene at the infamous pool parties hosted by Hollywood luminaries like Bryan Singer, 48-year-old director of X-Men, Superman Returns, and The Usual Suspects.
It’s now 30 years since HIV was discovered. During my training as a doctor in central London in the late 1990s, people were still dying of Aids. But since then, incredible pharmacological advances have been made in how the virus is treated and managed. Combination medications — termed ‘highly active antiretroviral therapy’ or Haart — have resulted in being able to maintain the infected person’s immune system and therefore prevent the opportunistic infections that resulted in the development of Aids and led to death. Despite working in the centre of London with high-risk groups such as sex workers and drug addicts, I haven’t seen someone die of HIV for years. It’s now incredibly rare to die as a result of HIV/Aids in this country. The most recent statistics show that in 2012, less than 1 per cent of people with HIV died. This is about the same for the non-infected population. It’s hard, now, to argue that HIV is a death sentence.
The Louisiana House of Representatives voted not to remove the state's sodomy ban today, even though it was declared unconstitutional by the U.S Supreme Court in 2003 and cannot be used to arrest people.
Last week, Tom Daley came out again during a UK television appearance, stating that he now identifies as a gay man. When the Olympic diver announced that he was dating a man last December, the widespread reaction to his assumed bisexual reinforced harmful tropes about being “greedy” and sitting on the fence. Instead of considering how we’ve been conditioned to understand sexuality, some made assumptions about how people should discuss or label their orientation.
And for a second time, heterosexual privilege and bisexual stigma have scored landslide wins.
Three years ago, sex education advocates sat down to write national standards for how students learn about reproduction — something akin to the Common Core standards. Except, in this case, for sex.
The moment, in a way, seemed just right. Congress had effectively cut off federal funding for abstinence-only education in 2009. But no one knew quite what would, or should, replace it.
The result was the National Sexuality Education Standards, the first attempt at creating a road map for what skills and knowledge students should get from sex education. The new curriculum would be based on science, include clear information on safe sex practices, emphasize healthy relationships, and be LGBT friendly.
But so far, only one state, Colorado, has even come close to adopting them.
"There are pockets of good sex education," says Debra Hauser, president of Advocates for Youth, one of three sex education groups that joined to form the Future of Sex Education and write the standards. "But by and large we're still pushing."
One openly gay athlete leads to another, and another, and another. Collins is in the NBA. Sam, a college football player, is trying out for the NFL. Gordon, a sophomore at the University of Massachusetts, came out today as the first openly gay player in Division I men’s basketball.
One of the more curious memes to emerge (or, really, re-emerge) in the wake ofBrendan Eich’s resignation from Mozilla last week is the notion of a “gay mafia,” a shadowy group of power-queers that will, I don’t know, sink you off the Christopher Street Pier in a bundle of costume jewelry if you run afoul of the movement. Conservatives like Glenn Beck and Newt Gingrich have warned the faithful of the ruthlessness of LGBTQ activists, decrying “terrorist organizations” and a “new fascism,” respectively, and everyone on the panel of last week’s Real Time With Bill Maher chuckled nervously when Maher called out the gay mafia directly. “I think if you cross them, you do get whacked,” he said, not entirely approvingly.