Connect with us

Arts & Entertainment

Ellen absolves Kevin Hart of homophobia

And Madonna returns as a Stonewall ‘ambassador’

Published

on

Billy says, ‘If you aren’t tall enough to get on Space Mountain, you can’t host the Oscars.’ (Screenshot via YouTube)

“I think she just has really tiny hands!” – Pete Davidson at his New Year’s Eve show at Chevalier Auditorium in Medford, Mass., while discussing Ariana Grande’s quip about him having a “big dick.”

Welcome to 2019 – officially. And to kick it off, we’re reporting on the Golden Globes, even though I’m not there. I know you count on me to be your eyes and ears everywhere, but I had pressing business elsewhere. I did send my minions to report back to me and, well, even they were bored. Some quick quips: I don’t know who looked more annoyed to be there, Billy Porter or Johnny Galecki; every once in a while, you think Sam Neill is dead, then, poof, there he is; much like Keith Urban, I wouldn’t let anyone near me with a flu shot; Dick Van Dyke had firmer footing than Michael Douglas; Christian Bale, comedy genius; and is there anyone more breathtaking than my pal Justin Hartley? It’s important to note that these awards are less about who won than who was snubbed. That’s all.

If the Golden Globes taught us anything, it’s that not just anyone can host. The Oscars may be more than a month away, but they are still host-less. So, Ellen DeGeneres decided to flex her considerable power to strong-arm Kevin Hart back into the job – and strong-arm the viewing audience into accepting him. Apparently, Ellen and Kevin are good friends, and she thinks his past homophobic rants should not preclude him from the job. In what was presented as a spontaneous interview on her show, Ellen asked Hart about the controversy and why he stepped down.  He then rambled on and on about…well, really, about nothing.  She then allegedly surprised him by saying that she spoke up on his behalf to The Academy.  I don’t know who she spoke to at the Academy – it may very well have been a receptionist, or even a temp.  “We want him to host, whatever we can do, we would be thrilled, and he should host,” said whomever answers the phone at the Academy.

This pissed off many people – specifically gay people. Who was Ellen to speak on behalf of the gay community? Don Lemon said he doesn’t think Hart should be allowed to host. Lemon said Hart’s past “jokes” actually do represent the views of many black fathers of gay children. “That is a joke to Kevin. But the truth is, that is a reality for many little boys in the United States.  Somewhere, a black dad is beating his black son.”  Lemon added, “Apologizing and moving on does not make the world a better place for people who are gay or people who are transgender.  Being an ally does.”

Let me say I don’t have a dog in this fight. I really don’t have any strong feelings about Kevin Hart – although I stand by my earlier statement that if you aren’t tall enough to get on Space Mountain, you can’t host the Oscars. Beyond that, I have no idea in the heart of Hart if he is homophobic or not.  What I do know is that comics will say anything for a laugh – and I suspect Hart’s core audience would laugh at homophobic comments.  The real question is, can people evolve?  I suppose they do. Politicians do. People like Obama and Clinton changed their stance on gay marriage as their view “evolved” (although, like comics, I think politicians play to their audience).  Ultimately, I believe in the free market. If the Academy wants Hart to host and he wants to host, he should host. And if people don’t like him, believe he is homophobic, or don’t buy his apology, they should not watch the Oscars. Kevin solved the problem for us – he (again) took himself out of the running to host…for now.

Madonna made a surprise appearance at NYC’s Stonewall Inn on New Year’s Eve.  Perhaps it wasn’t a complete surprise – the day before, the Inn posted on Instagram, “We are insanely proud to announce Madonna is a Stonewall Ambassador supporting Stonewall Day + the 50th anniversary of Stonewall!” On the night, Madonna resembled the fun, kicky Material Girl we all grew up loving. She had a crazy bow in her hair and lots of clunky, dangling jewelry.  She donned glasses to read her lengthy remarks about how the Stonewall Inn is the birthplace of Pride. And then she sang an acoustic version of “Like a Prayer” with her son David playing guitar, which almost made you long for the days Madonna showed off her guitar skills.  You can see the video on BillyMasters.com.

I was terribly sad to hear about Derek Keeling‘s passing.  You may remember this talented (and gorgeous) man from the reality show to find stars for the Broadway revival of “Grease.” In addition to “Grease,” he also toured in “All Shook Up”, “Million Dollar Quartet”, and “Happy Days: The Musical.”  Rest in peace.

We ran long and it’s late, so we’ll quickly remind you to check out www.BillyMasters.com – the site that welcomes gays and straights alike. If you have a question, dash it off to [email protected] and I promise to get back to you before someone from the Academy asks me to host the Oscars! 

So, until next time, remember, one man’s filth is another man’s bible.

Continue Reading
Advertisement

Sports

Carl Nassib comes out as gay, first active player in NFL history

Nassib also announced that he is donating $100,000 to the Trevor Project

Published

on

Carl Nassib. Courtesy of Instagram @carlnassib.

LAS VEGAS – Carl Nassib, who is a fifth-year defensive end for the Las Vegas Raiders, became the first active NFL player to announce he is gay. The Raiders defensive end is now the NFL’s only openly gay player.

“I just want to take a quick moment to say that I’m gay,” Nassib said in a video he posted on his Instagram account. “I’ve been meaning to do this for a while now but I finally feel comfortable enough to get it off my chest. I really have the best life. I’ve got the best family, friends and job a guy could ask for. I’m a pretty private person, so I hope you guys know I’m not doing this for attention, but I think representation matters.”

Nassib also announced that he is donating $100,000 to the Trevor Project.

“The Trevor Project is grateful to Carl Nassib for living his truth and supporting LGBTQ youth. This generous donation will help us scale our life-saving crisis services to reach the more than 1.8 million LGBTQ youth who seriously consider suicide each year in the U.S.,” said Amit Paley, CEO & Executive Director of The Trevor Project in an emailed statement to the Blade.

“Coming out is an intensely personal decision, and it can be an incredibly scary and difficult one to make. We hope that Carl’s historic representation in the NFL will inspire young LGBTQ athletes across the country to live their truth and pursue their dreams. 

“At a time when state lawmakers are actively trying to restrict transgender and nonbinary youth’s participation in school sports, this news should serve as a clarion call for greater LGBTQ inclusion in the locker room and on the field,” Paley added.

Continue Reading

Television

Sesame Street embraces ‘Gay Dads’ for this year’s Pride month

Love is love, and we are so happy to add this special family to our Sesame family and Happy Pride to all!!!!

Published

on

Screenshot via Sesame Street YouTube

NEW YORK – The iconic children’s program Sesame Street enhanced LGBTQ visibility this Pride season introducing two gay dads and their daughter, in a special episode directed by Japanese American actor and theatre director Alan Muraoka who also plays Alan, the current owner of Hooper’s Store on the show.

Muraoka shared the exciting news on Facebook, saying he was “honored and humbled” to have directed such a milestone episode, “Love is love, and we are so happy to add this special family to our Sesame family. Happy Pride to all!!!!,” he posted. 

“The ‘Family Day’ episode of Sesame Street sends the simple and important message that families come in all forms and that love and acceptance are always the most important ingredients in a family,” GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis tells Yahoo Entertainment. “Frank and Dave, as Mia’s dads, are the latest characters in an undeniable trend of inclusion across kids & family programming, one that allows millions of proud LGBTQ parents, and our children, to finally get to see families like ours reflected on TV.”

Sesame Workshop (formerly Children’s Television Workshop), which produces the show for National Educational Television on PBS has long embraced LGBGTQ visibility and equality. In addition to having openly gay celebrities such as Sir Elton John, Ellen DeGeneres, Billy Eichner, Billy Porter and recently Lil Nas X, guest star or make appearances, the show has produced several shows with positive LGBTQ themes over the past decade.

Continue Reading

Sports

Mexico soccer fans punished for anti-gay slur chanted at games

FIFA sanctions team by banning spectators from first 2 World Cup qualifier matches

Published

on

Estadio Azteca Mexico City

MEXICO CITY – When the Mexico men’s national team play their all-important 2022 World Cup qualifiers come September and October, they will do so without a single fan cheering them on. As Yahoo Sports first reported, FIFA has sanctioned the team and ordered it to play to an empty home stadium because its fans won’t stop using a controversial chant—widely seen as anti-gay—during matches. 

For years, fans have shouted “puto” during opposing goal kicks at almost all Mexican men’s national team games, a word that one soccer fans site described this way: 

“For some, it’s a harmless word that they’ve been shouting at opposing goalkeepers for decades. For others, it’s a salty, inappropriate swear word you’ll hear at some soccer games. And for many others it’s a homophobic slur that denigrates LGBT individuals and makes attending a soccer game feel like an unsafe space.” 

“On behalf of the FMF, the players, the Liga MX, the clubs and all the national teams: Let’s stop. Let’s stop the fucking cry, please,” said Yon De Luisa, president of the Mexican Soccer Federation (FMF) at a press conference Friday, as reported by El Economista. “It is taking us away from our team and although many think it is fun, it is not.” 

Coach Gerardo Martino, added: “I invite our fans to make a reflection so that they understand once and for all the meaning and scope of this type of attitude. They are great at cheering, but we ask that you focus exclusively on the selection. We have a great concern.”

The punishment of banning spectators will reportedly impact two World Cup qualifying matches against Jamaica and Canada in September and October at Mexico City’s Aztec Stadium. It is in addition to a fine of 60,000 Swiss francs—roughly $65,000 specifically being levied for the chanting of “Eh, puto” at two Olympic qualifying games held in March in Guadalajara, according to Mexico News Daily. An investigation has also reportedly been opened into chanting of the word at Mexico’s friendly against Iceland last month in Arlington, Texas.

Despite what the coach and FMF president said, there are many straight soccer fans who argue against “puto” being considered a slur. Soccer writer Elliot Turner, who has lived and worked in Spain, Argentina, the Dominican Republic, and Nicaragua, explained that in a 2014 piece for Fusion:

“In Spanish, the term puta means prostitute, and Spanish, like other romance languages, has gendered nouns (a noun is either male or female). Thus, the term puto is the masculine form, meaning a male prostitute. (The feminine form is puta.) 

Did you just get a big tax bill from Uncle Sam? You’re likely to say ‘putos impuestos!’ Did your boss just give you a shitty assignment? You may mutter under your breath ‘puto trabajo.’

‘Puto’ is thus used similarly to ‘bloody’ in the United Kingdom and ‘fucking’ in the United States. It’s pervasive. The chant only reflects the ugly linguistic reality of Latin America and Spain. Everything that provokes rage is a ‘puto.’”

“Puto” can also mean “coward,” Turner argues, and writes “the typical El Tri fan means ‘coward,’ not ‘fag’ or ‘queer.’ And contextually, that has some support. Fans only use the term when the opposing goalkeeper punts the ball up the field.”

But because it also means “faggot,” a clearly hateful slur, Turner concludes the puto chant is “a form of prejudice and homophobia.”

This year, Mexican officials have stepped up efforts to stop the chant but social media campaigns and stadium announcements have failed, according to the Washington Post.

The chant was widely used at Mexico’s June 3 and 6 games against Costa Rica and the U.S., but as Yahoo Sports reported, officials enacted only Step 1 of FIFA’s three-step protocol, which call for match stoppages and PA announcements whenever the chant is heard; temporary match suspensions – with players returning to locker rooms – if the chant is heard again; and forfeits if it arises a third time.

Whether having to watch the team on TV, playing in front of 87-thousand empty seats, has an impact on this fan tradition remains to be seen.

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Advertisement

Follow Us @LosAngelesBlade

Sign Up for Blade eBlasts

Popular