This Week in the Mercury


Homo

Monday, November 19, 2012

Skate Gay Tonight!

Posted by Courtney Ferguson on Mon, Nov 19, 2012 at 2:29 PM

Maybe you're too self-conscious to break out your sparkles and jam-skating moves at the Oaks Park roller rink on the reg. But at the monthly Gay Skate night, no one gives a poop if you wear sequined hot pants (it's encouraged!) or skate backward all night (go for it, hot dog!). Plus the music is always great at Gay Skate, which is tonight! There will also be a donation station for Bradley Angle, the only domestic violence agency in Oregon with programming for LGBTQ survivors. So bring food and personal items (like toothpaste, floss, and the like)!

Oaks Park Roller Rink, 7805 SE Oaks Park
Tonight, 7-9 pm, $6 (includes skate rental)


Be like the ultimate hot-dogger, Gene Kelly, who knew how to keep it gay, tappy, and classy, long before Xanadu.

Friday, September 14, 2012

"Technically, fictional mutants have more rights than real gay people."

Posted by Alison Hallett on Fri, Sep 14, 2012 at 12:27 PM

"Earlier this month at Dragon Con, Brian Parsley and his longtime partner George Lewis recreated the cover of Astonishing X-Men #51, where Northstar gets married to his partner Kyle Lindau in front of pretty much all of Marvel's mutants," writes Topless Robot's Rob Bricken. "The only difference? Northstar actually did get married, but Dragon Con was held in Atlanta, and Georgia has banned same-sex marriage. Parsley and Lewis have said they would definitely have made the ceremony official if they could have. Which got me thinking. Technically, fictional mutants have more rights than real gay people."

Aw.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Red Cap Garage Is Closing

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Fri, Aug 3, 2012 at 11:14 AM

Sad news for fans of the Red Cap Garage: After an impressive 25 years, the queer bar that has been one of the last holdouts on what used to be known as "Vaseline Alley," has announced via Facebook:

Well, the rumors are true. After 25 fantastic years with the best customers and staff Red Cap Garage will be closing on August 18th. So, get ready - there will be a massive blow-out party on the 18th! We are working on the details right now and will be posting the event shortly. We hope that all our friends will be able to make it down in the next few weeks to say goodbye to us! While Red Cap is closing, Boxxes, Fish Grotto, and Fez will still be open. Fish Grotto is being remodeled and there will be changes coming soon for both Fez and Boxxes.

While Red Cap was mainly a queer bar, I know I'm not the only ally who will miss it—the people there were always welcoming, the food was totally decent, and the drinks were (sometimes dangerously) cheap (where oh where will I escape to now when Clyde Common is too packed/expensive/stop 'n' chatty??).

And every cloud has a silver lining:

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Project Nunway: The Video

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Tue, Jun 12, 2012 at 3:44 PM

In this week's Sold Out column I wrote about "Project Nunway," the Project Runway-spoofing fashion contest that is the brainchild of The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence. Nunway (which has taken place in other cities around the country) hit Portland for the first time over the weekend, and MOD writer Kayla Rekofke was there to witness it in all its tipsy glory, hosted by former Runway stars Bryce Black (appropriately dressed in spikey platform boots and inverted cross leggings) and Mondo Guerra. If you missed the event—a fundraiser for the more-than-worthy Quest Center, it nonetheless commanded a ticket price that was simply out of reach to many—don't fret: A video of the runway, complete with over-the-top costume designs by local designers, is up now over on MOD, along with Kayla's snaps of the evening's best dressed.

Mondo Guerra flanked by Sisters.

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Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Get Yer Gay Pride T-Shirts... at Target?

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Wed, May 23, 2012 at 2:59 PM

How long does it take you to word associate "Target" with "anti-equality"? Probably not very long. And the giant seller of All Kinds of Stuff knows it, having made a million headlines with their public support of Republican Tom "let's ban gay marriage" Emmer. Even though the company's excuse that they donated $150k indirectly, to the Emmer-promoting MN Forward business group, out of purely economic interests, is sloppy, but plausible, it doesn't matter: Gay rights supporters far and wide now make the connection, and it will take a lot of effort on their part to undo that association. Here's a baby step:

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  • Target.com

Do you buy it?

Monday, February 20, 2012

Gay Skate Tonight!

Posted by Courtney Ferguson on Mon, Feb 20, 2012 at 3:14 PM

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Pretty gay people on roller skates? Hell to the yeah. Tonight is Gay Skate sponsored by qfabPDX out at Oaks Park to benefit Black Pride ($1 off every admission goes to 'em). I'm willing to bet my rainbow-striped skate laces there's going to be some bumping music at the roller rink tonight.

Roll Bounce Gay Skate
Oaks Park Roller Rink
Tonight (and every third Monday of the month), 7-9 pm, $6, all ages

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

EMA's New Single Raises Money for Antibullying Nonprofit

Posted by Ned Lannamann on Tue, Feb 14, 2012 at 11:28 AM


The globetrotting EMA (Erika M. Anderson) may have already left her temporarily adopted home of Portland for the green, green pastures of Oakland, but she's still at the forefront of our thoughts as she drops this wrenching new single and video just in time for V-Day. "Take One Two" is just as raw as anything on her stunning Past Life Martyred Saints album, but it feels a little warmer, a little more reassuring. Proceeds from this single (for sale on iTunes) benefit the Jamie Isaacs Foundation, a nonprofit dedicated to aiding the victims of school bullying.

Here's what Anderson says about the video, which is old camcorder footage recovered from her teen years:

This footage comes from a South Dakota trailer park in the mid-'90s, and features a small group of freaks and misfits who seem to be having the time of their lives. Dressing up, hanging out, making up funny skits, and lots of laughing. When I look back now at our fresh young faces (yes that is me with the short dark hair and cat-eye liner), I'm amazed at how simply happy we all look. This is especially remarkable as I know what was going on outside those plywood walls: getting called names, shoved into lockers, and threatening to get our asses kicked for being queer or punk or just plain weird.
Read the rest here, and watch the extraordinary video above.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Feds Pursuing a "Vindictive Prosecution" of Dan Choi?

Posted by Dan Savage on Wed, Aug 31, 2011 at 3:46 PM

The trail judge thinks there's enough evidence of that to issue a 10-day delay so Choi's lawyers can put the government on trial for putting Choi in trial:

The third day of the U.S. government's trial of former Lt. Dan Choi ended with a 10-day delay for the government to seek an order from a higher court stopping the decision made today by U.S. Magistrate Judge John Facciola to allow Choi's lawyers to argue the government singled out Choi for "vindictive prosecution."

Facciola said this morning that he had found there was prima facie evidence for "vindictive prosecution," meaning enough evidence was presented to allow Choi's lawyers to pursue such a claim. As a result, Choi's lawyers would be able to ask for more documents and evidence from the government in order to investigate if higher-level officials advised their subordinates to try Choi in federal court rather than D.C. court and, if so, why.

Choi got arrested protesting DADT at the White House and is being charged with breaking some obscure federal park service law. He faces six months in prison. I'm going to go out on a limb here and guess that actress Daryl Hannah isn't going to face six months in prison for getting arrested at the White House yesterday.

You can sign a letter in support of Choi here.

Monday, July 25, 2011

I Don't Care If You've Seen These Already.

Posted by Alison Hallett on Mon, Jul 25, 2011 at 1:44 PM

See them again.

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Buzzfeed's 60 Awesome Portraits of Gay Couples Just Married in New York.

hat tip to my roommate, but I'm still not taking out the recycling.

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Thursday, June 16, 2011

Gay Gamers, It DOES Get Better

Posted by Alison Hallett on Thu, Jun 16, 2011 at 3:14 PM

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For our Pride Issue this week, we took our inspiration from Dan Savage's It Gets Better project, asking a handful of queer Portlanders to share their own experiences of how things got better once they reached adulthood. Some of the results are incredibly moving; I particularly like Brad Fortier's account of coming out to his D&D group; and Adam Arnold's story about how an adult helped him cope with high school, which seems to get to the heart of the entire project: Sometimes just telling an unhappy kid that life gets better after high school makes all the difference.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Portland City Insurance Will Now Cover Sex Changes

Posted by Sarah Mirk on Wed, Jun 8, 2011 at 12:01 PM

Ch-ch-changes: Big crowd to support sex change coverage
  • Ch-ch-changes: Big crowd to support sex change coverage
In an unanimous yes vote this morning, Portland's city council approved expanding the city's public insurance to cover sex changes.

LGBT advocacy group Basic Rights Oregon and unions packed the house with supporters for the big vote, which is one of only two times in the past two decades that the council has overridden the recommendations of the city's Labor Management Benefits Committee. That committee advised the city not to approve trans-inclusive healthcare, saying putting up to $32,000 a year into funding employee sex changes was not a good business decision.

A handful of citizens turned up at the vote this morning to tell council to shoot down the idea. Portlander Kelsey Green Grout suggested that instead of expanding the public insurance benefits, the city set up a private nonprofit to cover sex changes, or ask all employees if they would be willing to contribute $5 to a fund to cover sex changes.

But the council agreed with the American Medical Association that sex changes are necessary treatment for gender identity disorder and should be covered just like employees' prescribed heart surgeries and knee surgeries.

Continue reading »

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Portland Hate Crime Reports Decline—Does That Mean We're Safer?

Posted by Sarah Mirk on Thu, Jun 2, 2011 at 4:34 PM

Hamburger Mary Against Hate
Here's an interesting detail I picked up while reporting on the assault of two gay men and resulting 4,000-person rally on the Hawthorne Bridge last week: reports of hate crimes in Portland are way down.

That's weird, because the police, attorney general, and LGBT-advocacy groups have been pushing people since last spring to report all bias-motivated attacks, so you would think reports of those attacks would jump. In reality, the percent of hate crimes reported by LGBT folks did increase, but the overall number of reported hate crimes went down. Here are the stats, which I also included in this week's print edition: In 2010, only 38 hate crimes were reported in Portland, compared to an average of 66 in the previous three years. Hate crimes are down even more in 2011; only eight as of April 2011, compared to 15 through April 2010.

But hate crimes motivated by sexual orientation made up 44 percent of those 2010 reports in Portland, compared to an average of 32 percent of crimes reported since 2007.

The stats either show that we're living in a much safer city than we were four years ago, where LGBT people are increasingly likely to report bias-motivated crimes against them, or that people feel less comfortable reporting crimes to the police altogether.

In related news, ProgressiveOregon.com has started a petition against the Oregonian for apparently not covering the rally in any way. The petition already has over 500 signatures.

A Pro-Choice Lesbian

Posted by Dan Savage on Thu, Jun 2, 2011 at 9:47 AM

A lesbian challenges the premise of my "Choicer Challenge":

I'm sure you know this, but for plenty of homos, queers, etc. there really is a choice to be made. Gay men tend to think that biology determined everything right from the very first cell division—before you were even a person—but that overlooks a lot of other people's experiences and furthermore, it overlooks how boys are socialized to follow their dicks/desires right from the beginning. You might have made a choice so long ago you think it's nature that did it for you. Or maybe there are some bio-homos out there. But as for me, I tried heterosexuality, but living in NYC in a time when "experimenting" was encouraged I realized I could choose something else. I recognized a future for myself in all the miserable magazine articles about women perpetually dissatisfied with their boyfriends, husbands, etc. and realized that I could pass on all that and still enjoy the lipstick and fashion (allegedly designed to help women attract men). I could have been another miserable straight women; instead I made the happy choice to be a lesbian. Not because I had to, but because I liked it. I highly recommend it, Mrs. Palin.

Perhaps boys are socialized to follow their dicks/desires from the beginning while women are socialized to defer to dicks and men's desires from the beginning. And if that's the case gay men may have an easier time realizing they're gay, accepting it, and making the choice to come than gay women. But is that really the case? I recognize the unique—and destructive—ways that girls are socialized, but boys are under intense pressure to conform too. It's not like girls are told they MUST be straight while boys are allowed to make a free choice between gay or straight.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Miley Cyrus Tweets Out for Gay Marriage

Posted by Wm.™ Steven Humphrey on Fri, May 27, 2011 at 11:29 AM

Now I may or may not have said some disproportionately awful things about Miley Cyrus in the past. Frankly, I don't remember. HOWEVER! Today she made a significant leap on my respect-o-meter today when she did some heavy duty tweeting for gay rights and marriage, slamming Santorum-supporting Urban Outfitters as well as a gay-hating hillbilly.

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And okay, maybe "Party in the USA" is kind of... you know... "catchy," or whatever. WHATEVER!!
VIA

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Tuesday, May 24, 2011

BREAKING: Anti-Gay Hate Crime Reported on Hawthorne Bridge

Posted by Sarah Mirk on Tue, May 24, 2011 at 1:38 PM

Ugh. This is terrible. Portland Police have just announced that two men reported being assaulted near the Hawthorne Bridge on Sunday, a crowd of guys beating them because they were gay. Here's the full description from police:

On Sunday May 22, 2011 at 8:30 p.m. 23 year-old Brad Forkner and 25 year-old Christopher Rosevear were attacked by several suspects as they walked from the Hawthorne Bridge on the trail to the East Bank Esplanade.

Forkner and Rosevear had walked holding hands in Waterfront Park from the Burnside Bridge before going over the Hawthorne Bridge. As they walked they knew several men were behind them talking, laughing and pointing but they were not sure it was directed at them.

They walked onto the Hawthorne Bridge from Waterfront Park. They walked across the Hawthorne Bridge onto the trail toward the East Bank Esplanade. As they walked Forkner was pushed and punched by several subjects. He was able to break away to call 911. When he dialed 911 he was prompted to say 911, he yelled 911 into the cell phone and that seemed to stop the suspects from assaulting Rosevear. The suspects were hitting him in the head, face, back and ribs. The suspects are described as male, white, in their 20's and all about 5'11" inches tall. One was wearing a blue hooded sweatshirt, another was wearing a white or cream hooded sweatshirt and the third was wearing a brown hooded sweatshirt. The suspects ran south on the trail past the two victims.

When police arrived they searched the area for the suspects but found none. The victims said there were several people in the area when the attack occurred but none helped in any way. No one even yelled, "Stop" or "We are calling police".

It's incidents like this that remind Portlanders that we don't live in a bubble, that two men are not always safe holding hands even in the heart of Portland.

Just over fifty hate crimes were reported in Portland last year, with 20 of them due to perceived sexual orientation. Almost exactly one year ago, a group of people in drag were assaulted downtown and last fall, a gay man in SE Portland was terribly beaten while walking home.

Last years' assaults prompted discussions between the LGBT people, local police, and state law enforcement. Those conversations pushed the attorney general to quickly set up a system to report hate crimes online. Good on Forkner and Rosevear for reporting this to police—that's the only way the cretins who threatened them will ever be caught.

Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call Detective Kevin Warren at 503-823-3761.

UPDATE 1:58PM—The Q Center sent out a response to the attack, noting that, "Our hearts and thoughts are with the men who were assaulted as they heal from their ordeal." The center is holding trainings for the Q Patrol, a citizen and police group that patrols downtown on weekends to deter violence against LGBT people, on three nights this week. Schedule here.

UPDATE 3:14 PM— Mayor Sam Adams and Police Chief Mike Reese have issued statements on the attack, too. "Any two people in Portland should be able to take a walk, hand in hand, without fearing for their safety," says Adams. "I want to personally urge those witnesses to call our Bias Crime Detective, and share any information they may have," said Mayor Adams. From Chief Reese: "Portland is an open and welcoming city where everyone should feel safe... We will do everything possible to arrest the individuals responsible for this troubling crime."

Friday, May 20, 2011

Rapturous

Posted by Dan Savage on Fri, May 20, 2011 at 10:29 AM

I've heard that the religious nutters who believe that the Rapture is going down—and believers are going up—this Saturday at 6 PM are "blaming" the gays.

Um... nutters? Isn't the Rapture supposed to be a good thing? For believers, I mean. And aren't you guys looking forward to it? So shouldn't we be getting the credit for the Rapture, not blame?

If gay pride parades and gay marriage brought this about—you're going home to Jesus!—how about a little gratitude?

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Newt Gingrich Brutalized in Glitter Attack

Posted by Paul Constant on Wed, May 18, 2011 at 10:59 AM

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — GOP presidential candidate Newt Gingrich and his wife Callista were hit with glittery confetti by a protester Tuesday during the couple's appearance at a book-signing.

The man approached the Gingriches during the signing at a downtown Minneapolis hotel, dumped a cracker box full of colorful confetti on the pair and said, "Feel the rainbow, Newt! Stop the hate! Stop anti-gay politics!"

Okay, I've gotta say this: I think this is a dumb way to protest anti-gay politicians. It's certainly not a tactic that's going to win over any conservative hearts and minds. It'll get you a go-round in the press, but those column inches aren't going to advance the cause.

That said, "Feel the rainbow, Newt!" is a fucking hilarious sentence, and that Gingrich supporter at the end of the video is so terrifying and creepy that he feels made up. And it's yet another addition to the car-wreckish glory that is Newt Blingrich's Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Week. So maybe this counts as a win, after all?

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Anna Wintour Comes out to Support Gay Marriage

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Tue, May 17, 2011 at 11:14 AM

You see, she's not so bad (she's just busy, and has no time for bullshit):


I don't know that it needed much clarification, but it's nice to have the official figurehead of the American fashion industry included in this series of PSAs in support of gay marriage rights. A longtime fundraiser for AIDS causes and an open supporter of both Al Gore's and Barack Obama's campaigns, Wintour famously once made the bold claim that, "If you look at any great fashion photograph out of context, it will tell you just as much about what's going on in the world as a headline in The New York Times."

Son of Prominent Rightwing Bigot Finds Out About "It Gets Better" Project

Posted by Dan Savage on Tue, May 17, 2011 at 9:44 AM

This makes me happier than the news that the SF Giants are joining the "It Gets Better" Project: the president of the officially-designated hate group Concerned Women for America was watching American Idol when Google Chrome/It Gets Better ad aired. Penny Nance scolded Fox on her blog:

Thank you for cleaning up the Viagra commercials Fox, but PLEASE what’s with the new tolerance for homosexuals campaign disguised as anti-bullying? Bullying is wrong. It is wrong for any reason. Apparently, American Idol with the help of Woody from Disney’s Toy Story, thinks that my 4th grader needs to be fully aware of the plight of teens who view themselves as "gay." I am sorry, but he doesn’t even know about heterosexual sex yet. Can you give me some room here? I am ticked because I feel tricked. Fox blew it last night. The point is parents felt secure in allowing our entire families watch this show. They lured us into a false sense of security and broke trust with us last night.

A few thoughts... after the jump.

Continue reading »

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Monday, May 16, 2011

Ambiguously Gay Duo—FOR REALZ!

Posted by Wm.™ Steven Humphrey on Mon, May 16, 2011 at 10:44 AM

In this weekend's SNL, Robert Smigel's classic toon The Ambiguously Gay Duo got a real life makeover, thanks to guest stars Jon Hamm, Jimmy Fallon, Stephen Colbert and Steve Carrell—and a snake. That looks like a penis. For some reason.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

New Derogatory Term for Gay People: Sweet Smellin' Jockstraps!

Posted by Wm.™ Steven Humphrey on Thu, May 12, 2011 at 10:44 AM

This news story depicts Judge Phillip Kirk of Waupaca, Wisconsin giving a school bus driver the verbal smackdown for sexually abusing some kids—WHILE trying out his his new comedy act! Apparently he's one of those people who think that child molesters are also automatically homosexual... or as he puts it, "Gayer than a sweet smellin' jockstrap." He has more to say on the subject, too... and exactly what did homophobes do with people's penises back in the '40s??

Dear Mr. Judge: Don't quit your day job. Or on second thought, do.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

The Daily Show Takes a Google Break

Posted by Dan Savage on Tue, May 10, 2011 at 9:59 AM

"Jon Stewart told everyone to Google 'Santorum' on his show tonight during a segment on the Republican debates, and waited while people did so," writes hot tipper Mary B. "And then Keira Knightley came on and had just done so—the word 'frothy' came up. It was great!"

A Daily Show correspondent show also payed a visit to San Francisco's iconic BDSM shoppe Mr. S. That's after the jump...

Continue reading »

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Google Chrome: It Gets Better

Posted by Anthony Hecht on Wed, May 4, 2011 at 9:44 AM

So good*:

* Not just the commercial, but the whole, huge, amazing thing. Way to go Dan and Terry.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Santorum: Assfucking For All! But No "Privileges" for Gay Couples!

Posted by Dan Savage on Mon, Apr 25, 2011 at 10:14 AM

Nothing new here: Santorum doesn't think that same-sex couples should have any rights—no access to marriage, no civil unions, no domestic partnerships, no nothing—but he concedes that we are "free Americans" and that we can live our lives however we like. In other words: all Americans have a right to assfuck their partners in their asses but only straight Americans should have the right to make medical decisions for their partners in an emergency. (But what about assfucking emergencies? We'll need to get a clarification from Santorum about that.) This is growth: Santorum used to argue that gay sex should be a felony. At this rate Santorum will come out for marriage equality sometime after 2089.

Trans Woman Brutally Attacked

Posted by Dan Savage on Mon, Apr 25, 2011 at 9:43 AM

She was dragged out of bathroom in a McDonald's in Baltimore and attacked by two women—both teenagers—and beaten nearly to death in front of a crowd of other customers and McDonalds employees. The attack only stopped after she had a seizure. A McDonald's employee filmed the attack and posted it to his YouTube account. (You can hear him laughing on the audio.) Other employees stood by and did nothing, other customers stood by and did nothing. One woman who tried to intervene—an older woman—was punched in the face. The McDonald's employee who filmed the attack—since fired—can be heard warning the attackers that the police were coming and they might want to get out of there. The video of the attack is here and it's not easy to watch. The Baltimore Sun has an interview with the victim:

 

Another heartbreaking video. But Chrissy Lee Polis is great: articulate and insightful and charismatic and composed. I'm not always comfortable with the way victims of anti-gay violence or discrimination are sometimes elevated to hero/activist status—not all of victims of discrimination are good spokespeople, not all are able to handle the pressure or the scrutiny, many wind up feeling used after attention turns to fresh victim/heroes—but this woman could put a face to the violence and discrimination that trans people endure in our society. And she needs a job. (Although she might own her very own McDonald's franchise soon.) I hope the national orgs are paying attention.

For readers in Baltimore and/or D.C.: there will be a candlelight vigil at the McDonalds where Polis was attacked at 7 P.M. this evening (6315 Kenwood Ave. in Rosedale, Baltimore).

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