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Film

Drawing an X in the Sand

Film

Drawing an X in the Sand

Fifty years ago, Jack Valenti, then president of the Motion Pictures Association of America, replaced the existing Production Code with its current “voluntary rating system,” which included the “adults-only” X rating for content considered “unsuitable for minors.” (The adult film industry soon started using “XXX” to distinguish its films.) This month, the Quad Cinema is having a fantastic series featuring dozens of these controversial titles. Comments (1)
Films like “The Wedding,” written and directed by Sam Abbas, often get overlooked because they are made on a shoestring with an unknown cast. But this auspicious feature debut by the Egyptian-American Abbas demands attention. It’s a gem. Comment
On our last day in Greece, we found the sweetest spot. I was there with my spouse, Denise, floating in the crescent bay of historic Monemvasia. The sky was pure blue, and the warm water so clear we could see the rounded stones lining the sea floor. Comment
Media Circus

Blind Eyes Toward Enemies Inside & Out

Nothing captures the imagination like two rich homos betraying their own community. Sarah Maslin Nir got the ball rolling in the New York Times: “They are throwing a $5 million fund-raiser for President […] Comments (1)
LGBTQ asylum seekers at the US-Mexico border are enduring sexual abuse, medical neglect, violence, and lack of shelter and legal representation in their quest to flee harsh conditions in their home countries. Comment
Crime

Pols Call for New City Hate Crimes Office

Lawmakers gathered on the steps of City Hall on Tuesday afternoon to call for the formation of a new office geared toward preventing hate crimes amid a disturbing spike in attacks targeting minority groups in the city and around the nation. Comment
A revised version of the trade agreement among the US, Canada, and Mexico contains a new footnote exempting the American side from discrimination protections on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity, and more after strong pushback from Republican members of Congress. Comment
LGBTQ folks and allies alike fear that Tumblr’s decision to ban all “adult content” could represent a slippery slope toward censoring other content pertaining to sexual minorities. Comment
Insider Trading

Turncoats, Self-Proclaimed Converts & Shocking Bitterness

Scurrilous, disgraceful, despicable, and bigoted are how I would describe former Democratic fundraisers Bill White and Bryan Eure. The New York Times reported that these turncoats have proudly trumpeted […] Comments (1)
Music

Ghost Story at the Opera

Music

Ghost Story at the Opera

Juilliard Opera Theater, on November 16, mounted Benjamin Britten’s “The Turn of the Screw.” Any musically strong performance of this masterful score compels awe — and gratitude. Steven Osgood really had the measure of his excellent band and paced and blended them accordingly. With a dynamically versatile chamber piece like this, the intimate but not cramped auditorium reaffirms its status as one of the city’s very best places to hear operas. When he took his bow, Osgood generously and justly invited his players up onstage with him and the singers. Comment
While the mainstream media is paying unadulterated homage to former President George H.W. Bush on his death at 94, AIDS and LGBTQ activists who survived his neglect toward the HIV epidemic and his opposition to gay rights are being painfully reminded how little value is placed on the lives of those in our community — including by some gay reporters. Comments (1)
Health

On World AIDS Day, Still Fighting Stigma

Health

On World AIDS Day, Still Fighting Stigma

At a ceremony held November 30 at Baruch College in Manhattan, the End AIDS NY 2020 Coalition — made up of more than 60 community partners from across New York State — and Broadway Cares/ Equity Fights AIDS hosted the fifth annual World AIDS Day Citywide Commemoration. Comment
Health

Light in the Darkness

Health

Light in the Darkness

On World AIDS Day, the NYC AIDS Memorial launched its Arts and Education Initiative, with an interactive art experience, created in collaboration with artist Jenny Holzer. Comment
The New York Civil Liberties Union (NYCLU) is suing the New York State Division of Human Rights after it refused to investigate abuse claims against police and correction agencies, saying they were outside of its jurisdiction. Comment
Vice President Mike Pence used his platform in a World AIDS Day speech on November 29 to inflate the Trump administration’s record on the epidemic and exclude any mention of the LGBTQ community for a second straight year, angering advocacy groups around the country. Comment
Theater

Finding Grace After Abuse

Theater

Finding Grace After Abuse

The long overdue #MeToo movement has empowered countless women, and more than a few men, to confront, if not avenge, their abusers and reclaim their dignity. Comment
Health

Bi Women, Gay Men at Highest Risk of Opioid Misuse

Bisexual women and gay men are reporting higher rates of opioid misuse compared to people of other sexual orientations, a new NYU study, published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, has revealed. Comment
Retired Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy had a propensity to side with conservatives during his time on the bench, but he found exceptions when it came to gay rights — and on that even he himself was caught off guard at times. Comment
Theater

Magic and Manipulation

Theater

Magic and Manipulation

My main concern in seeing Mike Birbiglia on Broadway was whether the intimate appeal of his previous Off-Broadway outings would translate to a much larger house. I shouldn’t have worried. His latest piece, “The New One,” has taken up residence at the Cort Theater, and it fits with the ease of your favorite jacket. Comment
Features

Global Eats Fest Returns to Citi Field Next May

The World’s Fare returns to Citi Field next spring and figures to attract thousands of local foodies eager to try curated bites from across the globe. Comment
Nightlife

Queens of the Holiday Scene

Nightlife

Queens of the Holiday Scene

Peace on earth is intangible. Frankincense and myrrh are cliché — and expensive! A gift card is worthless, once it’s been maxed out. But the memories you and those on your “Nicely Naughty List” take from a holiday drag show will last a lifetime. This month, the star that beckons hovers not over a manger, but directly above the Laurie Beechman Theatre — a cozy little den of drinks, sass, and sin located below 42nd Street’s West Bank Café. Comment
While New York City’s health department is celebrating the decline in new HIV diagnoses in 2017 compared to 2016, it is also using a new method to estimate how many of the new diagnoses in 2017 were among people who were newly infected with the virus that year, altering the recent year-to-year comparisons announced in past reports. Comment
Health

Do You Know Who These People Are?

Health

Do You Know Who These People Are?

“Do you know who these people are? If not for them, you wouldn’t be getting married. You wouldn’t be suing about a wedding cake.” Comments (1)
Health

World AIDS Day 2018

WORLD AIDS DAY CITYWIDE COMMEMORATIONThe End AIDS NY 2020 Coalition — a coalition of more than 60 community partners from across New York State — and Broadway Cares/ Equity Fights AIDS, in conjunction with the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and the New York State Department of Health, host the fifth annual World AIDS Day Citywide Commemoration. This year’s theme, “Breaking Through Stigma,” focuses on how stigma and discrimination connect to racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, disability, poverty, immigration status, violence, shame, and homelessness and housing instability, and create obstacles for people living with and affected by HIV to accessing optimal health care and support. Comment
Politics

Harvey Milk Remembered 40 Years After Assassination

Dozens of people braved rainy conditions in San Francisco on Tuesday night to mark the 40th anniversary of the assassination of gay City Supervisor Harvey Milk and Mayor George Moscone. Comment
In a way, this all came to head with Scarlett Johansson. Comments (1)
LGBTQ advocacy groups in New York are scrambling to help people choose appropriate Obamacare healthcare plans for the new year before the December 15 deadline. Comments (2)
Russia’s courts violated freedom of assembly rights of citizens when they rejected applications to hold gay rallies, the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) ruled on November 27. Comment
Mexico natives Daniel Berezowsky and Jaime Chávez Alor walked into New York’s Mexican consulate in May with the goal of obtaining a marriage license, but what followed was a rollercoaster ride of rejections, legalities, and finally, an historic kiss. Comment
A gay couple and their friend were out in Manhattan early Wednesday morning when they say their Uber driver hurled homophobic slurs their way and dragged one of them through the East Village for a quarter of a block — and cops are said to have made matters worse. Comments (1)
In recognition of World AIDS Day to be marked on December 1, public officials and public health advocates gathered at the Brooklyn Public Library on November 28 to highlight the need for continued vigilance against an epidemic first recognized 37 years ago. Comment
Film

Getting By

Film

Getting By

Esmail (Ardalan Esmaili), the protagonist of Milad Alami’s “The Charmer,” uses women for survival. At first, his actions seem wholly mercenary: he’s an Iranian immigrant in Denmark whose visa has run out. He’s about to get deported back to Iran unless he can get a green card through marriage to a Danish woman. This leads to a string of seductions, one of which ends in a tragedy depicted at the film’s beginning. But Esmail has a secret that keeps him from just doing whatever he wants, and he knows that he’s constantly violating his moral compass. He’s a step away from becoming a Patricia Highsmith character, but Alami’s sensibility is much more humanist. Comment
Bermuda’s Court of Appeals ruled in favor of same-sex marriage on November 23, marking the second time the British island territory has achieved full marriage equality. Comment
Politics

Jim Owles Celebrates Election Gains

Politics

Jim Owles Celebrates Election Gains

In the wake of a Blue Wave that captured the US House and the New York State Senate for Democrats, the Jim Owles Liberal Democratic Club held a November 26 gala at Butter restaurant in Midtown. The evening […] Comment
International

First Pride Since Gay Decriminalization in India

Thousands of people marched through the streets of Delhi on November 25 in the first Pride Parade there since India decriminalized homosexuality in September. Comment
Health

Trump Proposes Limiting HIV Meds’ Medicare Coverage

Advocates are sounding alarms after the Trump administration on Monday unveiled a proposal that, if implemented, would lower the number of HIV drugs available to Medicare recipients beginning in 2020. Comment
Legal

High Court Delays Considering Bias Cases

The US Supreme Court is postponing its review of three cases that could determine whether workplace discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and/ or gender identity constitutes a violation of federal civil rights. Comment
Film

Alone in a Crowd

Out gay writer/ director Sebastián Silva makes squirm-inducing films. In his breakthrough, “The Maid,” in 2009, the title character grappled with issues of class and power in an upper middle class Chilean household. His 2015 feature “Nasty Baby” chronicled a gay couple encountering harassment from a mentally ill homophobe. Silva’s latest work, “Tyrel,” is in much the same vein as it, too, addresses an outsider struggling to find his place in an unwelcoming environment. It is a compelling comedy-drama that, like all of the filmmaker’s work, will get under a viewer’s skin. Comment
For the latest in its annual series of Ópera en Español presentations, the New York City Opera staged Ástor Piazzolla’s tango operita “María de Buenos Aires” for three performances at (le) poisson rouge. The production concept by director Tomer Zvulun originated with the Atlanta Opera but was restaged in the past month for the (le) poisson rouge cabaret space by revival director Stephanie Havey. Comment
As New York City and the state work to essentially end AIDS as an epidemic by 2020, the two key components of that goal have been to ensure that all those infected with the HIV virus are on treatment and compliant with their regimen — which should render them uninfectious to their partners — and that those who are negative and sexually active adhere to pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP, which if used according to guidelines should eliminate the risk they could be infected. Comment
The Transgender Law Center (TLC) is taking legal action after a transgender woman who died in the custody of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) was found to have suffered physical abuse during the time leading up to her death in May. Comment
City Council Speaker Corey Johnson is remaining tight-lipped after he is said to have blasted a Donald Trump-supporting gay couple at a dinner party earlier this year when they urged him to speak with the president to discuss the city’s infrastructure needs, according to the New York Times. Comments (1)
Voters in Taiwan on November 24 approved referenda defining marriage between a man and a woman and curtailing LGBTQ education in schools, marking a political setback for the LGBTQ community there one year after that nation’s constitutional court ruled that same-sex couples had a right to marry. Comment
Crime

Rapper Convicted in Assaults Near Gay Club

A rapper who attacked three people near a gay nightclub in Brooklyn last year has been convicted of assault, menacing, and weapons-related charges stemming from the incident, Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez announced on November 21. Comment
Breaking News

Trump Turns to High Court on Trans Military Ban

Breaking News

Trump Turns to High Court on Trans Military Ban

In a holiday weekend effort to get around injunctions from four federal courts against President Donald Trump’s efforts to bar transgender military service, the administration is asking the Supreme Court to lift three of those injunctions while these separate challenges to the policy — which the president first announced in a series of July 2017 tweets — play out in the lower courts. Comment

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