Hosted this week by Lucia Chappelle and produced with Greg Gordon
"NewsWrap": A national bill to criminalize exposing minors to pro-LGBT "propaganda" – much like the recently enacted measure in St. Petersburg – is introduced in the Russian parliament, while a judge in the Russian city of Sochi, which will host the 2014 Winter Olympics, upholds a ban on Pride House, a specific venue for LGBT athletes and their supporters that was introduced at the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver; Mladen Obradovic, the leader of Serbia's extremist group Obraz, is sentenced to 10 months in prison for inciting violence against LGBT people; Albania's Prime Minister Sali Berisha quickly counters calls by a deputy minister of defense for participants in the country's upcoming first-ever LGBT Pride march to be beaten with batons; Slovenia voters approve a referendum to overturn a new family law that would have allowed same-gender couples to adopt the biological children of their partners; Chile confronts anti-gay brutality and the need for national anti-bias and hate crime protections following the horrific neo-Nazi gang beating death of 24-year-old "out" gay man Daniel Zamudio at a park in Santiago; newly-released internal memos issued by the U.S. National Organization for Marriage expose the rabidly-anti-equality group's strategies to drive wedges between LGBT people and both African-Americans and Latinos; in what organizers call "the largest illegal mass wedding ever held," more than 200 lesbian and gay couples say "I do" at a mall in Cleveland, Ohio, while Australian comedian Adam Hills presides over the mass weddings – though also not legal there – of 41 LGBT couples on his popular nationally-televised evening talk show to demonstrate to viewers that such marriages are not "as scary" as they might think they are (written by GREG GORDON with thanks to REX WOCKNER, produced by STEVE PRIDE, and reported this week by RICK WATTS & JOHN TORRES)
The epic conflict between "Gay, Inc." at its most self-aggrandizing and the grassroots LGBT movement at its most theatrical played out on March 17th in LOS ANGELES. The occasion was the Hollywood installment of the HUMAN RIGHTS CAMPAIGN's annual cross-country tour of gala awards events. On the inside ticket-holders celebrated HRC's most recent activities, including its award for workplace equality to the infamous investment bank Goldman Sachs and its recruitment of that company's CEO Lloyd Blankfein for its marriage equality campaign. That's why protestors outside from the Occupy Los Angeles Queer Affinity Group and GetEQUAL were present in force. Finding black ties to be a thin disguise for corporate lies, many demonstrators wore hazardous materials cover-alls, or "haz-mat suits," signifying Goldman Sachs' involvement with the toxic financial dealings that nearly sank the economy. "This Way Out’s" VASH BODDIE was on the scene for both the boycott and the banquet (includes comments by JOHN WAIBLINGER of the Occupy L.A. Queer Affinity Group and other protestors; DALILA ALI RAJAH, HRC/L.A. co-chair of community events; outgoing HRC president JOE SOLMONESE and incoming president CHAD GRIFFIN; Los Angeles Mayor ANTONIO VILLARAIGOSA; allies/honorees/actors JOE MANGANIELLO and CHARLIZE THERON; and allies/honorees MSNBC "Hardball" host CHRIS MATTHEWS and his wife KATHLEEN; with thanks to MISS BARBIE-Q and STEVE PRIDE for production assistance.