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NATIONAL EQUALITY MARCH VIDEOS

Click to View my Videos!

Click to View my Videos!

Click the picture to see all the videos I took down at the National Equality March… including speeches by  Cynthia Nixon, Dustin Lance Black, Lieutenant Dan Choi, Lady Gaga,  Judy Shepard, the Broadway cast of Hair

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NATIONAL EQUALITY MARCH – WASHINGTON DC Oct. 11, 2009

Cynthia Nixon, Judy Gold, Dustin Lance Black, Lieutenant Dan Choi, Gavin Creel, Kristin Chenowith, Lady Gaga, Jonathan Groff, Audra McDonald, Stephen Schwartz, Judy Shepard, Kate Shindle, the Broadway cast of Hair were among just the tiny people that came with the thousands of others!

NEAL in DC - CLICK FOR MORE PICTURES!

NEAL in DC - CLICK FOR MORE PICTURES!

Neal with Cynthia and Christine - CLICK PICT FOR MORE

Neal with Cynthia and Christine - CLICK PICT FOR MORE

I was on about almost no sleep and I trekked in from Staten Island after having an awesome reunion with my friends who came many different states!  I love my friends and we had a chance to watch a DVD I made for our bus and also from LGBT trivia.  I have to admit I was disappointed my friends didn’t make it. I know we all have different things going on in our lives, but I was especially surprised because their effects all of my friends.  Not one of them went for one reason or another.  I wish I had the support of my friends and it would’ve been nice to have had another hand to hold.  But I understand.

I arrive (wayyyy) early to where Broadway Impact (http://www.broadwayimpact.com/join-us/) had set a destination.  It was amazing to have celebrities give their time, and money to make sure there were FREE busses for anyone that wanted to march!

I arrive around 4am, and they busses didn’t start loading until about 5:30.  Eeek! So I walked around and I finally met some other marchers.  We were all in the same boat- tired but hyped on energy!

After many botched attempts to get onto a major highway, our bus driver FINALLY got us there taking local roads (the truth is, the tolls are extremely high and they did not want to pay them).

After the ride, which was filled with trivia, my video clips, music to pump us up and great fun getting to know each other –we were finally in Washington DC!!

Upon arriving there wasn’t much time to explore because it was time to get in line to march!

After finally finding (and losing) our companions, we ventured to where we would be starting the march.  On the way, we met an eclectic bunch of people.  It was amazing to see the moms, fathers, sons, daughters, brothers, religious leaders and celebrities who came.

Once we get settled and had our fantastic BROADWAY IMPACT banner and signs –there was a buzz because there were so many celebrities filtered in with the masses.  We were told Lady Gaga would be marching with us and to make sure things didn’t get crazy.  Aside from being an incredible moment, it was so cool that celebrities we be taking time from their busy schedules to join us!

As we were getting repositioned, I glanced over and realized we were going to marching not with Lada Gaga after all! Instead, we had the opportunity to march with two amazing people – comedienne extraordinaire Judy Gold and Emmy award and “Sex and the City” favorite Cynthia Nixon!  I was stunned and of course being a HUGEEEEE Sex and the City fan I was blown over!  We march with the cast of Hair and MANY of Broadway’s elite (including Jerry Mitchell, Steven Schwartz)

Marching all over Washington DC, it felt like a movie.  WE were changing things.  I heard great stories about how cool Lady Gaga was to march with as well.

When we got to the rally an incredible feeling came over all of us.  I happened to sit next down next to Cynthia Nixon’s family.  I was in awe of how amazing their family was.  They were so full of love and when Cynthia got up to speak, her family boosted with pride.  I couldn’t help myself, I went over and Christine, Cynthia’s partner, to tell her what an amazing family they had and how it was so great to have such powerful role models like them in the LGBT community.  They truly are the way a family should look.  She was appreciative.  I also thanked Cynthia politely as well.  Throughout the day, they were littered with fans from all over.  Not once did she say “no” about getting in a picture.  After the rally they bought Broadway Impacts dozens of pizzas.  I was so touched by the generosity of not just her but of all the people involved to make this happen.

Over the course of the day, the rally contained the speakers from all over, gay, straight, old and young, notable and people who will be any day now.  The trip back was exhausting but we all shared our pictures, Facebooks and experiences of how we were a part of something BIG.

It truly was a special day.

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* MICHAEL MUSTO: CELEBRITY, COLUMNIST, AUTHOR AND AMAZING “VOICE” VISITS THE BLOG!!! **

Throughout the month of October leading up to the Equality March, we will be saluting people(s) who have made a positive contribution to the LGBT community.

Already, I have looked at Ryan Janek Wolowski, Randy Wicker, the Broadway community, Frenchie Davis, Jerry Mitchell, Brandon Teena, 9 year-old Ethan McNamee, Cleve JonesMarti Cummings from BroadwaySpeaksOut.com , Harvey Milk, Ellen DeGeneres and Matthew Shepard and his family.

OCTOBER 9, 2009

MR. MICHAEL MUSTO

http://blogs.villagevoice.com/dailymusto/

Neal & Michael Musto - 2009 - Click for more MIchael!

Neal & Michael Musto - 2009 - Click for more MIchael!

I was lucky enough to meet his on various occasions and he is such a sweetheart! He is so busy and he made time for the blog!

As if you don’t KNOW!!!

His next book, “Fork on the Left, Knife in The Back” comes out on Alyson
Books in February. It’s a collection like his last one (“La Dolce Musto”), but with some original material.

Perez Hilton gave him  a quote for the book:
“Michael Musto is god!”

The Brilliant and Witty Michael Musto

The Brilliant and Witty Michael Musto

Michael Musto is an American writer who began his professional career at The Village Voice, where he writes the weekly La Dolce Musto celebrity and gossip
column.

He is a recurring guest on several TV shows including Countdown with Keith Olbermann and others on the E! channel. He is
openly gay and is published regularly in several gay publications, including Out Magazine and ShowPeople. He appeared in Cyndi Lauper‘s single “Hey Now (Girls Just Want To Have Fun)“, and as a reporter in the film Garbo Talks.

Musto was named Best Gossip Columnist in a poll conducted by nycsidewalk.com, and in 2002, a UPI profile of Musto called him “one of the wittiest stylists in the English language”. Musto is also known as the author of articles in the Village Voice that cited rumours about the murder of AngelMelendez. The result of this and subsequent publications by Musto regarding the murder brought to attention a case in which police were otherwise uninterested and resulted in the trial and conviction of Michael Alig and Robert “Freez” Riggs.

– – – –

In His Own Words. . .

ABOUT MICHAEL . . .

I am the entertainment columnist for the Village Voice, which involves covering
nightlife, movies, theater, politics, and anything else I’m interested in. I am
deeply attracted to all the types of culture that make New York tick, so my
column is a dizzying whirl of my experiences in all those arenas, told with a
strong first-person touch and lots of humor.

I’m from Brooklyn, a shy only child who grew up to live a dream life.


GROWING UP . . .

I grew up with a lot of lies and evasions in the air. No one talked about
gayness back then. If they did, it was only as a sickness and a sin. All the b.s and the cloaking in secrecy made me angry and inspired
me to feel the closet is our worst enemy. All the bigotry also made me despise the inequality we face. Americans deserve equal rights. All Americans. That always struck me as a no-brainer.


MORE ABOUT GRWOING UP GAY . . .

It was very different. I knew I was gay, but didn’t know what to do about it. There were no TV shows about it, no out icons, no representation in the media. It seemed like a shameful thing that you had to keep secret. Thank God I moved to Manhattan, because I eventually found out there was a booming, vital life you could have as an out gay.

NATIONAL EQUALITY MARCH . . .

Hopefully it will become another historic landmark, like the Stonewall rebellion in 1969. It will be considered a massive, vocal organized effort that
called for change and (fingers crossed) got it.

We’ve come a long way, but there’s still so much to fight for, so now is the right time to go for broke and demand total equality, not just dribs and drabs. The passing of Prop 8 was a big impetus. A lot of activists realized they hadn’t been organized enough to battle that properly and horrifically enough it snuck through. That won’t happen again.

ADVICE TO THE NEW GENERATION AND YOUTH . . .

Be grateful. You have way more rights, visibility, and icons to look up to than past generations. When I grew up, gay marriage and other rights were not
discussed–no one would waste his breath on something that seemed so off the radar. So enjoy being a gay in the new world. Its fab
to be you! But don’t become complacent and assume you’ve got it all. Keep fighting.

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OUT AND DO TELL

OUTRAGE ON HBO!

OUTRAGE ON HBO!

Outrage

They fight against same-sex marriage. They fight against funding for AIDS research. They fight against adoption by gay parents. Are they fighting against themselves? Award-winning filmmaker Kirby Dick (HBO’s Oscar®-nominated “Twist of Faith”) takes a look at the hypocrisy of closeted politicians who continually vote against gay rights and actively campaign against the LGBT community they covertly belong to.

An official selection of the 2009 Tribeca Film Festival, OUTRAGE investigates the hidden lives of some of the country’s most powerful policymakers – from now-retired Idaho Senator Larry Craig, to former New Jersey Governor Jim McGreevy – and examines how these and other politicians have inflicted damage on millions of Americans by opposing gay rights. Equally disturbing, the film explores the mainstream media’s complicity in keeping those secrets, despite the growing efforts to “out” them by gay rights organizations and bloggers.

Through a combination of archival news footage and exclusive interviews with politicians and members of the media, OUTRAGE probes the psychology of a double lifestyle, the ethics of outing closeted politicians, and the double standards that the media upholds in its coverage of the sex lives of gay public figures. As Barney Frank, perhaps the best-known openly gay member of Congress explains, “There is a right to privacy, but not a right to hypocrisy. It is very important that the people who make the law be subject to the law.”

The film also spotlights Michael Rogers, a gay activist and founder of blogACTIVE, a Washington, D.C.-based website dedicated to outing closeted public figures. Rogers feels it is necessary to expose the hypocrisy of those who may live one way in public and another way in private, explaining that his work is not about outing people who are gay, but rather about “reporting on individuals who are working against the community that they then expect to protect them.”

Kirby Dick is an award-winning documentary film director whose last release, 2006’s “This Film Is Not Yet Rated,” was a breakthrough investigation of the secretive MPAA film-ratings system. His 2005 HBO film “Twist of Faith” received an Oscar® nomination for Best Documentary Feature. Dick’s other films include “Derrida,” a portrait of the French philosopher, and “Sick: The Life & Death of Bob Flanagan, Supermasochist,” which won the Special Jury Prize at Sundance and the Grand Prize at the LA Film Festival. Among his other HBO/Cinemax credits are 2003’s “Showgirls: Glitz & Angst,” 2001’s “Chain Camera” and 2004’s “The End.”

OUTRAGE was written and directed by Kirby Dick; producer, Amy Ziering; executive producers, Tom Quinn, Jason Janego, Ted Sarandos, Chad H. Griffin, Kimball Stroud, Bruce Brothers and Tectonic Theater Project; co-producer, Tanner King Barklow; editors, Doug Blush and Matthew Clarke; music, Peter Golub. For HBO: senior producer, Nancy Abraham; executive producer, Sheila Nevins.

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Throughout the month of October leading up to the Equality March, we will be saluting people(s) who have made a positive contribution to the LGBT community.

Already, I have looked at Randy Wicker, the Broadway community, Frenchie Davis, Jerry Mitchell, Brandon Teena, 9 year-old Ethan McNamee, Cleve JonesMarti Cummings from
BroadwaySpeaksOut.com , Harvey Milk, Ellen DeGeneres and Matthew Shepard and his family.


October 8, 2009

AMAZING ACTIVIST

RYAN
JANEK WOLOWSKI

Contact:
ryanisland@aol.com
http://www.ryanisland.com
http://www.twitter.com/ryanisland
http://www.ryanisland.blogspot.com
http://www.myspace.com/ryanisland
http://www.facebook.com/ryanisland
http://www.youtube.com/ryanreporting
http://www.flickr.com/photos/ryanisland

————-

Ryan Janek Wolowski in DC - Visit His Sites Above

Ryan Janek Wolowski in DC - Visit His Sites Above

Before I share Ryan’s incredible journey, here’s a little tid-bit Ryan shared with me.

SEX AND THE CITY MOVIE CAMEO:
“ I am only going there cause I know this will work for your readers and what a big fan you are of the TV show and the film and that is that I have a very small spot in the Sex in the City movie… It is in the scene when Charlotte York jumps up in the restaurant and shouts that Carrie Bradshaw is getting married, I was a socialite doing lunch in the restaurant, had my wardrobe picked out by Patricia Field it was a real NY divo moment for me and I got my SAG Screen Actors Guild credentials for doing the film. The girls were all very professional to work with.

DOCUMENTARY DIRECTING:
I am finishing up a documentary film called “Love, June” that chronicles the LGBT Pride events that happen right in New York City. I went to eight different events so it also has a rich New York story to it as well as I visit not just Manhattan events but Jackson Heights Queens, Staten Island, Fire Island that will be coming out in 2010.

————-

Ryan Janek Wolowski in DC - Visit His Sites Above

Ryan Janek Wolowski in DC - Visit His Sites Above


Ryan Janek Wolowski is a native New Yorker who has also had the rare experience of living in Poland during the communist regime of the early
1980’s. In the States Ryan has worked professionally in television production and postproduction since 1997. The limitations of telling fair and accurate
stories for major television networks led Ryan to public television in addition to his network television work, where he has been producing a Manhattan based weekly half hour cable show on television since 2006.

Having lived in a communist country where television and media was controlled by government and not by the US advertising dollar, Ryan saw early on how the lack of sharing thoughts, various political viewpoints, fashion and music leads to a society that would become very stagnant and not having the necessary tools for evolving.

Even after the fall of communism. Poland was still not a place that is safe for LGBT persons. In 2005 “The Polish News Agency reported that about a dozen counter demonstrators threw eggs at the gay pride marchers. Some shouted, “We are going to do with you what Hitler did with the Jews.” (Hitler and the Natzis did murder LGBT persons, and they were identified by having to wear pink triangles in concentration camps)

While in Poland Ryan’s mother Theresa Irene Wolowski made sure to have her children learn about what had happened to the Jews, Gays and differently abled by brining  her children directly to the Auschwitz Concentration Camp. Possibly that placed the seed for story telling similar to when a kid visits a haunted house they want to tell all of there friends what they saw.

The difference is when you visit an actual concentration camp the images of what was allowed to happen to human beings never disappear from your thoughts. Right now in some areas of the word Gay persons are still being killed for who they are and in most of the world gay persons are still treated as second class citizens and denied basic rights.

The situation is even worse for transgender folks, digital media though is not the answer to all of this but is a strong powerful tool for education, and enlightenment through entertainment.

As a director, videographer or editor if he can achieve any of those things he will not only have found his voice but the power to be a voice giver and that is what I am continually striving for.

As a survivor of a LGBT biased violent publicly viewed hate crime in Los Angeles California, he cannot accept the fact that a proper investigation has not taken place on the incident.

The attacker had placed a death threat at the scene of the crime on a transgender female Lavana Young Harris, both the attacker and Harris have not been seen since and when he informed the LAPD where they might find people who knew Harris, the LAPD had not even visited or contacted or followed up on any of the leads.

In twenty years when we look back on the National Equality March, he hopes no one forgets that rights have to be fought and lobbied for. Society did not just evolve LGBT people stood up for themselves and when this dose become successful…. there very well will still be oppression, hate and possibly still killings in other cultures of Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender persons and at that point we have to switch hats and become teachers, even if they build a 80 foot wall all around the borders of the United States of America. If we are just talking 20 years from 2009 these will be the early steps for a global march.

The 44th President of the United States of America Barack Hussein Obama has already publicly reached out to the Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Transgender community three times without even completing his first year of administration.

A. June 1, 2009 declaring Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month By The President of the United States ofAmerica a Proclamation sent out by The White House Office of Press Secretary http://www.capitalpride.org/wpcontent/uploads/2009/06/presidentialproclamation.pdf

B. September 28th 2009 including same sex couples in a proclamation on Family Day 2009 sent out by The White House Office of Press Secretary.

http://www.whitehouse.gov/the_press_office/Presidential-Proclamation-Family-Day-2009/

http://www.whitehouse.gov/the_press_office/Presidential-Proclamation-Family-Day 2009/http://www.whitehouse.gov/the_press_office/Presidential-Proclamation-Family-Day-2009/

C. October 10th 2009 in
Washington DC during the National Equality March weekend
President
Barack Obama to Deliver Keynote Address at the 13th Annual Human Rights Campaign Dinner
http://www.hrc.org/13628.htm

If we do not do this now before his first year in office is up, we very well may miss this boat. NOW IS THE TIME! Get on the Bus!

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Throughout the month of October leading up to the Equality March, we will be saluting people(s) who have made a positive contribution to the LGBT community.

Already, I  have looked at the Broadway community, Frenchie Davis, Jerry Mitchell, Brandon Teena, 9 year-old Ethan McNamee, Cleve JonesMarti Cummings from
BroadwaySpeaksOut.com , Harvey Milk, Ellen DeGeneres and Matthew Shepard and his family.

October 8, 2009

AMAZING ACTIVIST

RANDY WICKER

Linking the Past and Future

Randy Wicker and His Blog - Click Here

Randy Wicker and His Blog - Click Here

RANDY WICKER

Randy Wicker is first openly gay person to appear on East Coast television. He has done amazing things and I was lucky to have him tell us in his own words about his life, his fights and his cause.

Randy Wicker - Click for Website

Randy Wicker - Click for Website

His Own Words:

HIS IS MY 1250 WORD VERSION OF MY OWN CAREER AS A
GAY ACTIVIST.  I WROTE IT FOR DISTRIBUTION TO ABOUT A HUNDRED GAY
NEWSPAPERS DURING GAY HISTORY MONTH A COUPLE YEARS AGO.

RANDY WICKER’S GAY ACTIVISM  1958 to 1970

As a teenager during the 1950s, I knew I was homosexual.  “Queer” wasn’t “catchy” & “in” then.  “Queer” was a
hateful epithet that caused pain.  In high school, rednecks called me “Que-bo” behind my back.

In the 1950s, the media covered homosexuality as crime: Leopold & Loeb, child killers; Burgess & McLean, British spy-defectors to the Soviet Union; police raids on ‘pervert’ events with photos of drag queens sitting in a Paddy wagon.

Only Confidential Magazine covered “all the news unfit to print” about celebrities’ real or alleged homosexual activity.

At seventeen, I read a pulp novel describing a gay bar. I was ecstatic!  There were actually places where homosexualsgathered and socialized!  Library books only talked about  “causation” and the “mental suffering” of the “afflicted”.

Similar experiences motivated Barbara Gittings, the 20th Century’s most effective lesbian activist, to wage a 50-year life-long campaign against what she called “the lies in the library”.  Today, books about gay civil rights sit next to “the lies in the library” –thanks to Barbara Gittings.

In 1956, I sought out “gay life” in Greenwich Village.  “Gay” was strictly an in-group term in those days, a word you’d use

to test another person’s reaction.  I bought The Mattachine Review and One Magazine at a newsstand, subscribed and

read them eagerly the next college year.

I had no problem accepting my homosexuality.  I only feared discovery.  As a college freshman, I kept a diary that
detailed the crush I’d developed on a fellow student.  My Father found my diary & read it. Fortunately, the psychiatrist he consulted advised him that I’d always be homosexual.

Father confronted me. He believed “circumstances” had caused my homosexuality.  He recalled how I’d cried about

‘Mommy deserting me’, at age five, when she was taken away with tuberculosis.

“ I want you to be the best adjusted homosexual you can become”, Daddy told me. “ I won’t always be here to take care of you.  I haven’t told your Mother because she could never accept it”. (Mother never really did.)

I invited my Father to accompany me to “Lenny’s Hideaway”, a Greenwich Village gay bar, where he would have met an impressive assortment of Ivy League School students, young lawyers & other professionals, etc.

“I can accept you,” Daddy explained while declining, “but I can’t accept them.”  (Ironically, I’d discover later
that he’d hired a private detective who’d followed me there.)

I eagerly showed my Father Mattachine Society literature a few months later & told him I was becoming involved as
we shared lunch.

“It’s your life to live,” he surmised.  “I don’t think you are going to get very far with this.  I ask just one thing—that you not involve my good name”.

My given legal name was “Charles Gervin Hayden Jr”.  I chose “Randolfe Wicker” as my new name.  After work, Charlie Hayden morphed into Randy Wicker, a fearless champion of truth and justice.  In 1967, I legally
became Randolfe Hayden Wicker.

Perceptions of homosexuals outraged me.

Legally, we were criminals.  Psychiatrists called us mentally ill.
Religious folk considered us moral degenerates.  The homosexuals I knew
were well adjusted, looked and acted normally, held jobs and were generally
indistinguishable from others.

I sought out the New York Mattachine Society in June, 1958, lied about my age to meet their “twenty-one or over” age
requirement and joined.  Several of the older members were informed, educated and articulate.  However, none felt able to be public spokesmen.

My promotion of Mattachine’s monthly lecture attracted 300 people versus the usual 30.  The landlord
evicted Mattachine Society because there was a bar at street level.  (The vice squad had visited him.)  It was illegal to
serve homosexuals a drink or allow them to gather in those days.  In 1965, we demanded service at Julius Bar in Greenwich Village, challenged & changed the law.

On NYC’s WBAI FM , a panel of psychiatrists boasted they could “cure any homosexual” with “just eight
hours of therapy”.  “Those shrinks are ‘frauds’ seeking vulnerable patients to exploit!”  I complained to the station brass.  “We ‘homosexuals’ are the real authority on homosexuality!  We live it 24
hours a day!”

The resulting program, “Live and Let Live”, captured a full page in Newsweek, was  favorably reviewed
by the New York Times, and became a major news story.  WBAI’s license was challenged. The FCC ruled “homosexuality
was a fit subject for public discussion”.  Radio & TV stations wanted panelists.  Mattachine’s sole spokesperson was
Randy Wicker.

I worked with the Robert Doty, the New York Times reporter exposing “one of the city’s best-kept secrets” – the “existence of a large homosexual community in NYC”.  I gave him Evelyn Hooker’s study &  begged him to include the “minority viewpoint” that “homosexuality, in and of itself, was not a mental illness”.  However, he
only used ‘all-gays-are-sick’ psychiatrists.

The New York Times Index’s (1963) describes a news story: “R. Wicker calls for acceptance of homosexuals as legitimate minority group.”   I’d talked at City College in Manhattan to an overflow audience of 400 students.   The  NYT printed that story on their “Women’s Page”.

During the mid 1960s, I concluded efforts to turn the struggle for homosexual civil rights into a mass movement were
futile.  In 1965, the “gay movement”, founded fifteen years earlier by Harry Hay, included only a few hundred people.  Its existence really depended on a couple dozen activists.


Where did I get the nerve to organize the first public demonstration for homosexual civil rights (U.S. Army Induction Center in NYC, 1964); give gay liberation a voice on the airwaves (1962); be the first
unmasked gay activist face on television (NYC 1964)?


Homosexuals, including most gay activists, believed they would be physically attacked (or worse) upon publicly identifying
themselves.  But by stepping out of the closet and “speaking truth to power”, I found people curious, respectful, willing to listen to dissenting viewpoints..

By 1964, I’d become a passionate opponent to the War in Vietnam.  My best friend’s girlfriend nearly died terminating an
unwanted pregnancy.  Other friends “turned me on to pot” and I’d become naively enamored by it. I joined the anti-war, sex freedom and legalize pot movements.

Publishing “issue buttons” was my hobby.  “Equality for Homosexuals” was my first big success.  By 1967, my hobby had become a lucrative business.  I became the “Button King” of the hippie era.

In 1969, Stonewall happened. I realized I’d given up prematurely on the gay community. I watched our Annual July 4th
demonstration in Philadelphia at Independence Hall be flooded with newcomers the next week and become NYC’s First Gay Pride Parade in 1970.

“In my lifetime, homosexuals have gone from being criminals to being a legitimate minority group.  We may not have‘full equality’ yet but we’re slowly getting there.

“I’ve watched young activists go to lobby politicians on gay issues, end up being hired by them and have careers asopenly gay civil servants.

“Our right to be, to love, to lobby, to be licensed professionals, to assemble, even to drink (J) are
taken for granted.

“I see continuing progress ironing out the shortcomings of our society.  Our right to marriage and military careers
are simply a matter of time.  I love this country!  Today’s improved status for gays, women and minorities shows the power freedom of speech has to transform the USA!”

Randolfe (Randy) Wicker

Randy Wicker - Click for Website

Randy Wicker - Click for Website

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Throughout the month of October leading up to the Equality March, we will be saluting people(s) who have made a positive contribution to the LGBT community.

Today we look at how the Broadway Community has helped to pave the way for equal rights for all.

Today it’s my privilege to present to you two Broadway stars and amazing talents, who were nice enough share their opinions on the Equality March.


Divine Vocal Powerhouse FRENCHIE DAVIS

website: http://www.frenchiedavis.org/

Frenchie Davis

Frenchie Davis

In her own words on why the Equality March should happen now

FRENCHIE DAVIS:

I am originally from Los Angeles…I am passionate about education, human rights, and music…partially because of how I was raised and mostly because of the personal convictions that I have developed as I’ve grown into a woman.

I think the equality issue strikes a chord in me for a number of reasons: my parents’ generation marched for all human beings to be treated equally just a few decades ago. I have a grandmother who had to leave home at a very early age because it was still illegal for blacks to be educated in her state and she wanted an education. I have a father who worked for Amnesty International for many years.

I have a [gay] best friend who I have known since I was 15 years old and he has ALWAYS been there for me. I have a friend who was kicked out of the house for being gay. I know what it’s like to be different and it has NEVER been my personality to keep quiet when I think that something is wrong. Even as a child I got put on time outs because I would openly disagree and I guess that all of those things combined have manifested themselves into activism for the
community.

20 years from now, I would hope that people will look back feel a sense of pride in the fact that they stood
for something that they believed in. I also look forward to the bigots having their aha! moment because many of them will! I remember watchin an interview on tv with members of the Little Rock Nine (the first black students to desegregate little rock central highschool, 1957) and there was a moment during the interview that will always stick with me: they brought a woman on the show, who had been among those who didn’t welcome them warmly. She stood outside of the school on that day and protested and yelled and called them “N” words. She had come on the interview years later to apologize. She was so ashamed of herself.

I believe that many people who oppose equal rights will come around. Look at how Bill Clinton, in a recent
interview, has reversed his stance and he now supports equal rights.

People do better, when they know better….

BIO:  Frenchie Davis is known world-wide for her stellar vocals!  Whether it be as a favorite on American Idol, or on Broadway in the smash musical “Rent”, she always leaves her audience spellbound!

(Wikipedia.com) In 2004, Davis held the role of Effie in a West Coast touring production of Dreamgirls, which appeared in Sacramento, San Jose and Seattle, and later went to Pittsburgh, PA.

From August 3 to 19, 2007, Davis starred alongside Miche Braden and JMichael in the role of Mahalia Jackson in the Hartford Stage production of Mahalia, A Gospel Musical, written by Tom Stolz and directed byJeremy B. Cohen.

In 2008, Davis, along with Ruben Studdard, will be starring in the 30th anniversary national tour of the musical review Ain’t Misbehavin’. The show first appeared on Broadway in 1978 and ran for some 1600 performances. Cities are presently being booked, and the show should run through at least May, 2009

Her review in “Rent” from Entertainment Weekly:  ..time seems to stands still as her powerhouse voice swoops and soars with emotion. Her stage time may be limited, but her stage presence is still Idol worthy

From http://www.frenchiedavis.org/: In July 2009 Frenchie released a dance cover of the Shannon classic “Give Me Tonight” which takes this hit song to a whole new place and for a whole new generation. The song is getting an amazing reaction from the Billboard DJ’s and from Frenchie’s fans all over the world.


In the late summer of 2009 famed DJ/Remixer Tony Moran will be releasing Frenchie’s second dance single called “You Are” as a Cd single.

The word from Tony is that this song, is guaranteed to be a #1 song on the dance charts.


Frenchie is also in the process of starting to record her “debut” Cd, which will be a combination of the “classics,” “broadway” and a few new “original” songs.


Needless to say the sky is the limit for this amazingly talented lady with a “god given” voice from above…

Frenchie in "Rent" on Broadway

Frenchie in "Rent" on Broadway

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Throughout the month of October leading up to the Equality March, we will be saluting people(s) who have made a positive contribution to the LGBT community.

Today we look at how the Broadway Community has helped to pave the way for equal rights for all.

Today it’s my privilege to present to you two Broadway stars and amazing talents, who were nice enough to share their opinions on the Equality March.

Tony Award Winner Jerry Mitchell

When I asked Jerry about the March:


“I pay FULL taxes, I want FULL Equality! Come on People, wake up!!!!

It’s almost 2010.

Meet ya in WASHINGTON on SUNDAY and FULL OUT!


– Jerry FULL EQUALITY Mitchell”

Jerry Mitchell

Jerry Mitchell

BIO: Jerry was also associate choreographer to Jerome Robbins on Jerome Robbins’ Broadway.

He performed as a dancer on Broadway shows The Will Rogers Follies, Brigadoon and On Your Toes.  In 1979, he was cast member for the national tour of the critical hit and Tony Award winning play A Chorus Line.  Two years after, he became sole chorographer for the You‘re a Good Man, Charlie Brown revival.  In 2001, his choreography on The Full Monty earned him Tony, Drama Desk and Astaire Award nominations.  His choreography on Hairspray also received the same nominations plus one more nomination from the Outer Critics Circle Awards.

In 2005, he took home a Tony, a Drama Desk and an Outer Circle Award for his outstanding choreography on La Cage aux Folles. He was also Drama Desk nominated for his choreography and directorial job on the musical Legally Blonde.  Among his body of works are the chorography on the revival of Gypsy, The Rocky Horror Show, Jekyll and Hyde and Dirty Rotten Scoundrels to name a few.

He conceptualized and directed Broadway Bares, an annual benefit comedy show that raises money for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS.  His film works include In and Out, Camp, Drop Dead Gorgeous and Scent of a Woman. He was also Emmy nominated for his work on The Drew Carey Show.

His new Las Vegas show, “Peep Show” has been a hit with audiences and stars big name celebrities!

Jerry Mitchell

Jerry Mitchell

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from Jamie Equality McGonnigal:

Dear Friends,

It’s time to switch things up a little bit. I think it’s time for a little equality quiz. I have been really surprised by how little even I knew about these things, so it’s time for some education.

At the end of this quiz, look at your score and for extra credit, tell me why you are going to attend the National Equality March on October 11th in Washington DC.

Please repost this as a note on your own page and encourage your friends to do the same!

1. In how many states can you currently be FIRED for being gay, lesbian or bisexual?

A.2
B.7
C.29
D.13

2. In how many states can you be kicked out of your housing for being gay, lesbian or bisexual?

A.28
B.15
C.0
D.35

3. In how many states can you currently be FIRED for being transgendered?

A. 38
B. 29
C. 19
D. 10

4. In how many states can you, tomorrow, walk to the courthouse and get married if you are Gay or Lesbian?

A. 3
B. 5
C. 6
D. 13

5. In how many countries can you currently serve openly in the military if you are gay?

A. 12
B. 0
C. 24*
D. 8

6. For every straight teen in the US that commits suicide, how many lgbt teens do the same?

A. 1
B. 2
C. 3
D. 4

Answers: 1:C, 2:D, 3:A, 4:B, 5:C, 6:4

Not a lot of questions, but a lot of answers.

How many of you knew of the outright discrimination written into our country’s and our state’s constitutions? How many of you operate every day thinking that you are in fact, equal to those who do the same job every day? How many of you just sit back and accept the fact that because of WHO YOU LOVE, you are lesser than the person behind you in the line at the supermarket? That you are lesser than the guy serving your lunch at the diner? That you are lesser than the man who signs your paycheck?

How many of us, every day, sit back and accept as LAW, that we deserve LESS THAN our parents, our siblings, our aunts and uncles, our coworkers, classmates and those we see walking down the street every day?

Why is it you are so willing to sit back and say “OK” to being less than, when you pay the same taxes, you are represented equally in the house and senate, when your groceries cost just as much as your neighbors? Something is not right and no one is going to fix it for you unless you stand up and do something about it.

The time for complacency is at an end and the time for real action has begun. If you do not stand up. If you do not attend the march in Washington DC on October 11th, then you are not only failing to stand up for yourself, but you are failing to stand up for the 11 year old boy who hung himself earlier this year. You are sitting down while young Joseph Walker-Hoover leaves school, a victim of unending bullying and torture, goes home from school thinking there is no where else to turn. He takes his belt, wraps it around a beam in his ceiling and buckles the other end around his neck and jumps off his chair.

If you are waiting. If you think you have something more important to do on October 11th. You are responsible not only for your own status as a second-class citizen, you are responsible for all those who cannot stand up for themselves.

Where were you on October 11th? I’ll be in DC. Hope to see you there.

In Solidarity,

Jamie
http://www.talkaboutequality.org

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Throughout the month of October leading up to the Equality March, we will be saluting people(s) who have made a positive contribution to the LGBT community.

Already, had have looked at Brandon Teena, 9 year-old Ethan McNamee, Cleve Jones,Marti Cummings from
BroadwaySpeaksOut.com, Harvey Milk, Ellen DeGeneres and Matthew Shepard and his family.

October 7, 2009

THE BROADWAY COMMUNITY


Over the years, the Broadway Community has rallied to help not only their community but communities worldwide including the LGBT.  These honorable and amazing organizations have paved the way for  more to come!  I am proud to say in one aspect or another I have been a part of these organizations.  Today we will have two big stars chat about the March means to them!

Organizations including but not limited to:

BC/EFA - Click for Site

BC/EFA - Click for Website

Broadway Impact - Click for Website

Broadway Impact - Click for Website

Broadway Speaks Out - Click for Website

Broadway Speaks Out - Click for Website

Each one is a worthy cause! Please donate your time and open your damn wallets too!!

Don’t make me go all Avenue Q on you!

BROADWAY CARES/EQUITY FIGHTS AIDS

– Unlike most other nonprofit, grantmaking organizations, Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS must raise every single dollar of our philanthropic budget, every year, in order to fulfill our mission. In turn, BC/EFA works hard to ensure that the money we raise is spent carefully and wisely, on programs where these hard-earned funds can have the maximum possible impact.

– (Wikipedia.comBroadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS is the theatre community’s response to the AIDS crisis. By drawing upon the talents, resources and generosity of the theatre community, on Broadway, Off-Broadway and across the country, BC/EFA raises funds for AIDS-related causes across the United States. Since its founding in 1988, BC/EFA has raised over $140 million for critically needed services for people with AIDSHIV, or HIV-related illnesses.

BROADWAY IMPACT

– We are a community of actors, directors, stage managers, fans, producers — pretty much anyone who has ever seen, been in or worked on a Broadway show — united by the simple belief that anyone who wants to should be able to get married.

–  We are a community of talented, generous and amazing people and what we are able to accomplish together is incredible. Every year, through Broadway Cares/ Equity Fights AIDS and other amazing organizations, we raise millions of dollars for charity. When someone needs our help, we are there organizing and rallying together to raise money and show our support. Now, there is a fight that has come to our stage and it is one that we cannot ignore. This fight needs more than just our money… it needs our action.

BROADWAY SPEAKS OUT

– The goal of the company, headed by artistic directors Martin Gould Cummings and Anthony Hollock, is to “spread the message of love, peace, and acceptance in the LGBT community through theatre and performance.”

– Has an online talk show and concert series which benefits many organizations.

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