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Squirrels Look Out For Flying Nuts and More Nuts and More Nuts… October 7, 2013

  • Scalia’s Bizarro New York Interview, Presented By GIFs
    In a new far-reaching and very surprising interview, he said he hates the Internet, so Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia will never see this coarsening of public discourse.

    All of the quotes below are real.

  • Mormon Leader Calls Gay Marriage ‘Immoral’: LDS Leader Dallin H. Oaks Tells Conference It is ‘Contrary To God’s Decrees’
    SALT LAKE CITY — SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — More states and nations may legalize same-sex marriage, but human laws cannot “make moral what God has declared immoral,” a top Mormon leader said Sunday.

    Apostle Dallin H. Oaks, in an address at the Mormon church’s biannual general conference in Salt Lake City, said the faith’s stance against same-sex marriage might be misunderstood or prompt accusations of bigotry. But he urged members to remember that their first priority is to serve God, and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ policies are based on God’s decrees, The Salt Lake Tribune reported (http://bit.ly/1huO8fj ).

    An LDS eternal perspective does not allow members “to condone such behaviors or to find justification in the laws that permit them,” Oaks said. “And unlike other organizations that can change their policies and even their doctrines, our policies are determined by the truths God has declared to be unchangeable.”

    Some 20,000 Mormons gathered at the Conference Center in Salt Lake City and millions more watched worldwide via telecasts and the Internet to hear Oaks’ remarks on the final day of the two-day conference.

    Oaks, a former Utah Supreme Court justice, bemoaned America’s declining birthrate, later marriages and rising cohabitation.

    He cited the changes as evidence of “political and social pressures for legal and policy changes to establish behaviors contrary to God’s decrees about sexual morality and the eternal nature and purposes of marriage and child-bearing.”

    The Mormon church teaches that same-sex attraction is not a sin, but acting on it is.

    “Even though individuals do not choose to have such attractions, they do choose how to respond to them. With love and understanding, the church reaches out to all God’s children, including our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters,” the church website states.

    Church President Thomas S. Monson spoke about the death of his wife, Frances, in May and about the challenges of facing mortality with strength and grace. Monday would be their 65th wedding anniversary.

    “Her loss has been profound,” said the 86-year-old Monson, considered a prophet of the 15-million-member church. “She was the love of my life, my trusted confidante and my closest friend. To stay that I miss her does not begin to convey the depth of my feelings.”

    His faith has helped him deal with the loss, he said.

    “The difficulties which come to us present us with the real test of our ability to endure,” Monson said. “A fundamental question remains to be answered by each of us: Shall I falter or shall I finish? Whenever we are inclined to feel burdened down with the blows of life, let us remember that others have passed the same way, have endured and then have overcome.”

    ___

    Information from: The Salt Lake Tribune, http://www.sltrib.com

  • A Date With the Nice Guy Who Always Finished Last
    Is there anything less sexy than a date who dumps all his problems on you? Is it really only nice guys who finish last?

    Internet dating attracts the loneliest of souls. Behind every profile advertising a “vivacious go-getter”, there’s a self-doubting emotional wreck searching for a friendly face upon which they can offload their problems – and little else. Sadly. Thankfully. Everybody’s got their problems; some of them like to share them on a supposedly romantic evening. It’s a risky seduction technique, but depressingly popular.

    Tonight, I’m playing shrink to Christopher, an aspiring novelist with faux-messy hair and a bowtie. Aspiring. Bonjour alarm bells – aspirations are doppelgangers of unrealised, far-fetched fantasies.

    His profile promised the romantic equivalent of high-speed broadband. Instead he is, at best, alternately fizzing and flatlining dial-up on the Isle of Skye. He’s telling me about his career thus far. It’s light on comedy.

    “I’ve wasted chances, fucked up opportunities, chased stupid dreams that turned into nightmares and missed out on a podium place every single time. I try not to be bitter about it, but it’s hard. I wish things were different. I wish I wasn’t such a, such a…” he begins to stammer.

    I eye my beer wearily.
    “Such a what?” I prompt.

    He sighs heavily. Any joy remaining in the room is quickly sucked out of it.
    He continues: “Such an also-ran. A bystander. I’ve never been at the centre of anything. Always in orbit. Uranus.”

    I do the obligatory schoolboy laugh, but he ploughs on, deadly serious. “I wish I’d been less of a loser.”

    I begin to wish he hadn’t ordered that gin and tonic.
    “You don’t really feel that way about yourself, do you?” I say.

    He looks up from the table, his eyes sad and grey, like the unluckiest pensioner in the bingo hall.

    “I’m afraid so. I try and try but nothing seems to work. All my relationships have been a disaster. Men screw me over all the time.”

    He’s doing a dreadful PR job on himself. What am I supposed to say? I have never met him before; I only have his side of the story. If he was this scintillating on dates to other men, no wonder all they wanted to do was roll in the hay and run. Do nice guys all really finish last? Or is there a reason you’re destined to be runner-up? I’m not sure I want to find out, and he doesn’t look like he needs psychoanalysing. Just a hug and that gin taking away from him would do, I reckon.

    We haven’t known each other long enough for physical contact, so a verbal ruffling of the hair will have to do.

    “I’m sure you’ve just been unlucky,” I offer.
    He looks down again, utterly convinced. “Yeah, maybe.”
    A huge sigh. His eyes return to mine. “Not much chance of a second date, I suppose?” he says.

    My mouth dribbles into a weak smile. I feel celibacy’s icy fingers grip my balls.
    “I think you’ve just had a bad day. Let’s try another, some other time.” It feels about as sincere as a Christmas card with a live grenade attached.

    “Thanks,” he says quietly, and we finish our drinks before heading out into the night and away from each other.

    Over the next few days, I think about whether to contact him again. Sure, he was a bit of a downer, but maybe he’d had a bad day. And while he’d been screwed over by men before, perhaps I can prove we’re not all the same. Considering those vulnerable eyes, I finally do contact him – a text proposing a drink.

    I wait. Nothing comes in return that evening. Busy, maybe. Out of the country. And, then two days later, my phone buzzes.
    “Nice of you to get in touch,” comes the reply. “But I kind of got a better offer. LOL. Was nice to meet you. Take care.”

    Maybe I should be irked, but I’m not. His curse looks to be finally broken. Second prize now belongs to me.

    Stats: 35, 5’8″, brown/grey, Shropshire
    Where: Columbia Rd, London
    Pre-date rating: 7/10
    Post-date rating: 3/10
    Date in one sentence: The world’s biggest loser wins the lottery.

  • Is Same-Sex Marriage Becoming Less of an Issue in Europe?
    Liberty, equality, fraternity goes the French motto and it now looks like the country is legally living up to its’ ideals on the issue of same-sex marriage. April 23rd, 2013 saw France become another country to approve a law allowing gay marriage. The bill, which also legalised adoption by same-sex couples, was passed by 321 votes to 225 in the French parliament on a day which saw hundreds of opponents of the measure rallying outside the National Assembly building in central Paris. The conservative opposition, alongside these campaigners, are now taking the issue to the constitutional council, but it seems unlikely that the council will move to block the measure.

    It is being viewed as one of the biggest social reforms in France since Francois Mitterrand abolished the death penalty in 1981 and a divisive public debate has arisen on the issue with some of the largest protests seen in France in recent years taking place. A prime example of one such demonstration took place in January. Hundreds of thousands of demonstrators took to the streets of Paris where three big marches converged on the Champs de Mars next to the Eiffel Tower.

    Supporters have described same-sex marriage as a universal human rights issue, equality before the law and it would certainly seem political support for gay rights is gathering momentum but is it actually becoming less of an issue across Europe? Ten countries that have legalised same-sex marriage so far are situated in Europe; a further fourteen European countries have legalised civil unions or other forms of recognition for same-sex couples, while Scotland and Ireland are considering legislation to introduce same sex marriage. In Britain, same sex marriage laws were finally granted approval in July this year with the Conservative, Labour and Liberal Democrat leaderships all backing the proposals, which were finally approved by MP’s and peers.

    For many, this legal recognition for same sex couples is marking the end of the centuries-old understanding of marriage as being solely between a man and a woman across Europe; however is this the end of the issue or not?

    Well in reality the answer is no…The European Union prides itself in being an institution that promotes equality and non-discrimination based upon your sexual orientation; a notion which was incorporated into the Treaty of Amsterdam. Yet with member states all in agreement, there are some that do little to actively promote equality for the LGBT community. In particular, catholic countries such as Italy and Poland who are members of the EU, are a very long way behind some of their counterparts. They will allow couples to live together but do not recognize any kind of commitment between homosexuals. Couples moving from one member state to another may not receive any legal recognition at all. When EU members have all agreed on common values and principles, why does this division still exist?

    It appears that despite there being great leaps forward with the issue of same sex marriage in Europe, it is still a matter that needs to be addressed in order for millions to enjoy the equality and freedoms that others can. There are, without doubt many more pressing problems that require attention but that doesn’t mean same sex marriage should be forgotten about completely.

    The fight isn’t over just yet.

  • ‘Toy Story’ Photo Series Makes Erotic Still Lifes Look Beautiful
    Queer arts and culture publication Muff Magazine has created a lovely, pastel-tinged series of still life photographs, aesthetically arranging traditionally feminine objects like hair curlers, gardening mitts, porcelain mugs… and dildos. Yup, you read that correctly. Why else would they call the series “Toy Story”?

    So long Woody and Buzz Lightyear, hello vibrators and anal beads! The cheeky spread, the combined efforts of creative director EA Bukanova and photographer Emma Ercolani, provides a lady-tastic retort to the unavoidable eroticism in every nook and cranny of contemporary culture.

    Behold, five photos that prove a vibrating glove is just as pretty as a pot of fresh flowers. You’ll never think of Pixar the same way again.

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  • Dykeotomy Tackles Bisexuality
    This week on Gwist, the gay YouTube channel, the girls of Dykeotomy tackle the tough topic of bisexuality and why bisexuals may suffer judgement from the rest of the LGBT community.

    Plus, Emily’s shocking admittance of unfair judgements past!

    For more from Gwist, head here.

  • ‘You Can Tell Just By Looking,’ New Book, Busts Myths About The LGBT Community
    The new book You Can Tell Just By Looking by Michael Bronski, Ann Pellegrini, and Michael Amico, busts myths commonly held about the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community, like the belief that you can tell that someone is gay just by looking at him or her.

    Below, see a slideshow of 10 myths busted by the authors of You Can Tell Just By Looking and visit Amazon.com to pick up the book for more queer truth-telling.

  • LGBT History Month: 3 Queer Events On October 6
    In conjunction with the celebration of October as LGBT History Month, The Huffington Post will be providing you with “Know Your LGBT History” updates! Check back throughout the month for a brief overview of some of the landmark moments throughout the course of our journey as LGBT and queer-identifying individuals.

    1791: France adopted The French Penal Code of 1791, marking it as the first Western European country to decriminalize same-sex acts. (h/t Quist)

    gay men

    1968: A group of 12 people congregated for the first meeting of the Metropolitan Community Church in Huntington Park, California. Founded by Rev. Troy Perry, who held the first meeting in his living room, the religious organization centralizes its ministry efforts around the LGBT community.

    metropolitan community church

    1998: Matthew Shepard was tragically attacked, pistol whipped, tied to a fence and left to die. He would later succumb to his injuries in a Ft. Collins, Colorado hospital. For details on the Matthew Shepard story as a whole visit here.

    laramie project university of mississippi

  • Sissy Goodwin Defies Normative Standards in Conservative Wyoming
    Sissy Goodwin is out shopping. He’s on the hunt for an industrial-sized wrench for a home handyman project along with two special somethings: colored hair bows and a pretty new dress — preferably red, size 12.

    He walks through a mall, a linebacker-sized figure in a pink skirt, lacy yellow blouse and five-o’clock shadow; a gold lamé purse slung over his shoulder and a white bow affixed to his receding gray hair. The 67-year-old college science instructor looks straight ahead, ignoring the stares and the catcalls.

    “Boy, you’re cute,” says a middle-aged woman, who then laughs derisively.

    In a hardware store, a man shakes his head in disgust. Another asks, “Is it a prank? A joke?”