Category: Gay Crimes

Beverly Hills Hotel Protest; US Catholics on Gay Marriage

Beverly Hills Hotel Protest

The Beverly Hills Hotel, a setting I once used in one of my books without knowing this, is owned by Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah, Sultan of Brunei. The Sultanate of Brunei wants “homosexuality” declared a crime punishable by stoning. As a result many are calling for a boycott of the Beverly Hills Hotel and the entire chain.

US actress Beth Grant, who is currently appearing on series The Mindy Project, supported the protest.

 ‘Hollywood spends a lot of money at the Beverly Hills Hotel and I don’t want it to end up in the hands of that person’ she said.

‘We just want in a loving and compassionate way to put an end to it.’

The Beverly Hills Hotel responded this way:

‘We continue to abide by the laws of the countries we operate in and do not tolerate any form of discrimination of any kind’ a spokesperson said.

‘The laws that exist in other countries outside of where Dorchester Collection operates do not affect the policies that govern how we run our hotels.”

Interesting. So I guess they’re telling us that we should not mind the fact that gay people will be getting stoned for being gay in another country as long as we’re all fine here in the US. That doesn’t work for me in Russia and it doesn’t work for me in this case either. I’d rather spend the night in my car than in any of their hotels.

You can read more here.

US Catholics on Gay Marriage

According to this link, US Catholics are more liberal about gay marriage than white evangelical Protestants.

Work done by the Public Religion Research Institute, released on 24 April, showed less than half of US Catholics, 49%, saw gay sex between two adults as ‘morally wrong.’

An overwhelming majority, 78%, of white evangelical Protestants consider sexual relations between same gender adults as morally suspect.

When it comes to marriage equality, only 37% of US Catholics oppose it; 69% of white evangelical Protestants are also against same sex marriage.

This is no surprise to me. I grew up Catholic and know many Catholics and none of them oppose gays or same sex marriage…at least none that I know. The article mentions nothing about African American Protestants, and I’d be curious to see where those figures come in. I have read studies where most reformed Jewish people are pro-equality and very liberal. But I don’t have any links to prove it.

You can read more here.

Breaking Stereotypes: Gay Boxing; Grindr, Rape, Philly;

Breaking Stereotypes: Gay Boxing

There’s a new boxing club in New York breaking old stereotypes called Velvet Gloves where gay men can work out in a very different way now, and meet people in the process. Here’s an interview with Vance Garrett, the guy who started the club.

I’ve wanted to do something with and for my group of friends outside of the typical scene for a long time. All of us have been to the parties and clubs, and that can be great, but I think we collectively have wanted something else to do that’s fun — but won’t leave you with a hangover — and fits with our current lifestyles. Working out and wellness in general is important to many of them, and while conditioning for boxing requires being in the best shape possible, I don’t think many would want to step into a traditional boxing gym. Also, boxing has always been a tough man’s sport. It has been marketed as gruesome and intimidating yet it is one of the most beautiful sports to watch. The athletes are as graceful as dancers. It allows you to develop self-defense skills, builds confidence, and is physically AND mentally challenging. So I wanted a club that was tailored just for them-for fun, social guys who want the best workout possible in the best environment possible.

You can read more here. I would join. I jog four or five miles every morning because health clubs annoy me. I’m out to work out, not socialize. I don’t have time. But I’ve never been to a club where I don’t wind up either ducking behind something to avoid someone, or stuck in conversation for at least twenty minutes. Velvet gloves looks like serious working out.

And for those of you who think this is something new. It’s not. Gay men come in all sizes, shapes, and varieties…not just what you’ve seen on Sex in the City.

I’ve actually incorporated a gay boxer character in one of my books, The Actor Learning to Love. It’s a recent novel in the Bad Boy Billionaire series.

Grindr, Rape, Philly

I actually saw this on my local news the other night and was surprised I didn’t see it anywhere online. It took a while, but I spotted it this morning and thought I’d post about it for those of you take chances with web sites like Grindr or Craigslist. A man from Canada who was visiting Philly decided to hook up on Grindr and got more than he bargained for. He was held up at gunpoint, and sexually assaulted.

It didn’t end there. The men then walked together about 15 blocks through the city, with the victim being forced to purchase Visa gift cards and make ATM withdrawals totaling $3,000. Finally, inside a busy bar at 20th and Walnut, surveillance cameras captured the struggle between the two men as the victim escaped.

You can read more here.

I also saw that an Allentown, PA man was murdered while trying to sell his car on Craigslist last week. The guy met a potential buyer from Philadelphia at his place of business, and then he was shot to death and the car was stolen. I get my tenants through Craigslist, and I actually sold my Jag through them recently, too. However, you don’t know what screening is until you’ve contacted me through Craigslist. I turn down far more people than I accept because they did something offhanded during the e-mail process. A huge red flag for me is when someone wants to meet too soon, or call too soon. It’s e-mail and only e-mail in the beginning. Those who are serious don’t mind that. Those who are up to no good, back off. The back and forth e-mail process for me when looking for a tenant or selling anything on CL takes at least a week. And even then I always meet at a very busy, crowded public place for the first time.

You just can’t take anything for granted, especially if you’re visiting a rough, vicious city like Philadelphia. Those of you who live in different places don’t always realize how we live here, and what we have to deal with. All of your worst fears about cities like Philadelphia are most likely true. All of the worst things you’ve heard are probably true, and even worse now because most have never recovered from the economic depression. Don’t trust anyone, especially from an online hook up.

Bethenny Frankel’s Ass; Anne R. Allen on Writing; Gambian President Gay Hate

Bon Jovi/ Versace

For some reason, this older photo of Jon Bon Jovi started floating around social media over the holidays and it reminded me of a post I wrote last year about photoshopping, body images, and the difference between how celebrity photos are often altered in direct contrast to how fashion designers create what has always been considered artistic images that often border on the abstract. But even fashion designers photoshop celebrities sometimes, and this one photo in particular of Jon Bon Jovi is classic photoshopping at its best.

You can view the photo here. The guy looks great for 50 years old. But a photo can hide certain things that you can’t in real life. And 50 year old skin is not the same as 25 year old skin no matter how hard you try. That’s life. Plain and simple. And to take this to a writer’s POV, you can’t write about a 50 year old the same way you can about a 25 year old unless you’re writing paranormal or science fiction.

And this article goes deeper, with a few excellent examples of how celebrities really look before they’re photoshopped. I love the photos of Bachelor Clooney. And frankly, most of the photos “before” don’t look all that bad anyway and I don’t see a reason to photoshop them. This link also comes with a warning. You’ll have to look at before and after shots of Bethenny Frankel’s ass…something I’m sure we can all live without seeing either before or after.

Anne R. Allen on Writing

Unfortunately, I’m a little late with this link, too, due to family things Tony and I have been dealing with in the past few days. But I wanted to post it anyway because I think it’s an excellent example of many short posts I’ve written on the topic of writing rules. In fact, many of the comments in this post made me smile because I used to follow some of the rules when I first started out. And, as a writer who is constantly trying to evolve, I’ve also changed a few of my own opinions at times. And I think that’s why I like Allen’s post so much.

I like this one rule about show and tell because I’ve posted about it more than once.

Authors who follow this rule closely can write such murky stuff you never know what’s going on.

Is this really the best way to present a character? “He wore a helmet with a wide brim, longer in the back to protect the neck, big black boots, a protective coat, and overalls held up with red suspenders. He smelled of ashes and soot.”

Why not just tell us he’s a fire fighter? After three pages of these guessing games, the building has burned down and WE DO NOT CARE.

You can read the rest here. And I highly suggest reading them all. And this goes for those who might be considered critical book reviewers who often comment on writing rules and styles in book reviews. In other words, if you’re going to mention in a book review that the author shows and tells (or anything writing related) you should know the full meaning of how this works and that writers often balance show and tell on purpose, otherwise you’re going to look a little dumb and you won’t even know it…but other people will know.  
Gambian President Gay Hate

My first thought when I read this was that I’m glad I’ll never have to set foot in Gambia. But then I thought how awful it must be for LGBT people in Gambia to have a President who would actually give a Christmas speech and compare being gay to having a social cancer.

The president said homosexuality will ‘never be condoned’ and warned parents to steer children away from ‘alien cultures that could corrupt their minds at this stage of their moral and psychological development’.

Naturally, there are plenty of gay people in Gambia and they’re fighting for their rights. Homosexuality is a felony there and LGBT people can get up to 14 years in prison for being gay.

But it gets worse. This President, this sick idiot, wants to pass laws where it would be legal to behead gays.

You can read more here.