News Round-Up: July 16, 2021

Voters stand in line waiting to vote
Voters stand in line waiting to vote
Investigation by AP found few potential cases of voting irregularities in Arizona

Some news items you might have missed:

LGBTQ Nation: It seems Caitlyn Jenner is filming her ‘campaign’ for governor of California – any guesses why the reality TV celeb might be doing that?

OUT: Two gay men vacationing on the French island of Corsica were brutally attacked by group of up to 20 men while a large crowd gathered and watched but did nothing to stop the brutal assault.

It Gets Better: Regular readers of TRR know I’m not only a huge supporter of the Olympic Games but especially the Paralympic Games. Check out the journey of out lesbian Courtney journey who will be competing in wheelchair basketball for Team USA at this year’s Games.

Instinct Magazine: Michael Henderson, the popular head coach of Murrieta Valley High School’s cheer and student program in southern California, was abruptly fired from his job last month. Henderson says he was fired for being gay and has filed a wrongful termination lawsuit alleging that the process leading to his dismissal was “flawed.”

Kenneth-in-the-212: Check out Kenneth’s round-up of the what’s what in LGBTQ publications including out swimmer Michael Gunning covering the latest from Attitude Magazine.

(image via Attitude Magazine)

4WWL: Alan Scott Lanoix tested positive for COVID-19 and spent 17 days in the hospital with several on a ventilator. His wife and 3 sons all tested positive too. Lanoix died June 9 at 54 years old. According to his sister, “He thought the vaccine was poison.”

AP: Investigation by the Associated Press finds fewer than 200 cases of potential voter fraud identified by Arizona’s local election officials out of 3.4 million ballots cast in last year’s presidential election.

News Round-Up: April 21, 2021

Antonio aka 'Fitness Papi'
Antonio aka 'Fitness Papi'
Antonio aka FitnessPapi (image via Instagram)

Some news items you might have missed:

Instinct Magazine: Antonio, aka FitnessPapi (above), is IM’s ‘InstaHottie of the week’ – and for good reason. Follow him on Instagram here.

The Advocate: Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly, a Democrat in a state with a GOP-controlled legislature, has quietly implied she may veto an anti-transgender bill that would bar trans girls and women from competing on female sports teams at the state’s public schools, colleges, and universities.

Gr8erDays: Tony Danza (Taxi, Who’s The Boss?) turns 70 today. The forever hunk never stops working it seems from his TV shows to Broadway (The Producers, Honeymoon in Vegas) to hosting gigs. Happy happy, Tony D!

NewNowNext: Australian superstar Kylie Minogue, along with her equally fabulous sister Dannii Minogue, have been ‘RuVealed’ as guest judges for the inaugural season of RuPaul’s Drag Race Down Under.

Democracy Docket: The Arizona House has approved a new bill that would purge over 100,000 voters from the state’s Permanent Early Voting List (PEVL). SB 1485 would remove voters who don’t vote in two consecutive primary and general elections from the list.

Omaha.com: Conservative radio personality Chris Baker was fired Wednesday after posting an offensive tweet about the Derek Chauvin verdict. In a statement, iHeartRadio called the tweet “completely inappropriate and unacceptable.” Baker blamed the ‘mistake’ on being “a fat-fingered boomer on Twitter.”

Not So Sweet: 3 LGBTQ Employees Fired From Bakery In One Month

Dessert Gallery Bakery and Cafe
Dessert Gallery Bakery and Cafe
Dessert Gallery Bakery & Cafe (image via Instagram)

Two separate lawsuits alleging anti-LGBTQ discrimination and harassment have been filed against Dessert Gallery Bakery in Houston, Texas.

According to the filings in federal court, Gilbert Johnson, a gay man, and Katherine Phillips, a lesbian woman, say they were terminated based on their sexual orientation.

But last summer, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Bostock v. Clayton County that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits employment discrimination against LGBTQ people.

Attorney and LGBTQ activist Fran Watson, representing both Johnson and Phillips, cited the Bostock decision in her lawsuits.

Johnson, who had worked at the bakery as a general manager, says he began to be treated differently by his supervisor after being on the receiving end of ‘sexualized commentary’ from his supervisor’s husband.

Among his responsibilities was hiring new employees. But according to OutSmart Magazine, Johnson alleges that when his supervisor discovered he had hired a transgender woman, he was no longer allowed to hire employees.

Johnson added that he was “bombarded” with questions regarding the trans employee accessing the restroom.

(image via Instagram/DessertGalleryBakery)

Phillips, who was fired just a day after Johnson, says that she was harassed about her sexuality by co-workers about her sexuality and that eventually had a negative impact on upward mobility within the company.

At one point, Johnson promoted Phillips to shift leader, but just one month later she was demoted. A month after that, she was fired. The next day, Johnson was fired.

But wait – there’s more!

The court filing also says the trans woman was fired shortly after Johnson and Phillips.

“Even the best companies make mistakes, and the bias has to be minimized because you’re impacting and interacting with a diverse workforce,” Watson told OutSmart. “Seeing that three LGBTQ people were fired in a month—and two within a day of each other—shows that inherent bias was present. We want the law to remedy that mistake.”

Dessert Gallery has issued a statement about the dual lawsuits saying they have “always been committed to promoting diversity and inclusion in the workplace and our community.”

“We have a long history of celebrating Pride and partnering with, as well as supporting, Houston’s LGBTQIA+ community,” continued the statement. “We take seriously any allegations like those outlined in these complaints but stand firm that these allegations are simply not true.”

The bakery closed by saying, “We believe the proper place to disclose the facts of this case is in the courtroom and look forward to that opportunity.”

The Daily Show: ‘Best Of’ Trump Bootlicking By Lou Dobbs

The Daily Show remembers Lou Dobbs's over the top Trump bootlicking

The Daily Show remembers Lou Dobbs's over the top Trump bootlicking

The Daily Show has put together this video montage remembering the highest heights of Lou Dobbs’s Trump bootlicking during the Donald’s time in office.

Lou Dobbs was fired last week after Fox News was hit with a $2.7 billion defamation lawsuit by voting software Smartmatic.

The lawsuit named the network, Dobbs, and his Fox colleagues Maria Bartiromo and Jeanine Pirro. Dobbs’s show was cancelled the next day.

Dobbs wets himself throughout the video praising Trump as a “true leader,” the country’s “greatest” president, and a man who “has set a standard for presidents that most mortals won’t be able to beat.”

Perhaps the biggest whopper of all: “You’re also the most loved and respected in history.”

Folks – this is how we got to the January 6 invasion of the U.S. Capitol building. Fawning over-praise like this for a man who couldn’t even bother to read intelligence reports.

News Round-Up: February 5, 2021

Photo of a studly football referee during the 2016 Super Bowl
Photo of a studly football referee during the 2016  Super Bowl
Remember him? (via 2016 Super Bowl)

Some news items you might have missed:

Super Bowl: So, I grew up watching tons of football because my dad was a sports writer. And I still enjoy it, so you can be sure I’ll be watching the big SportsBall game on Sunday for moments like the one above – remember the attention this ref (rightfully) received during the big game in 2016?

Out: Florida Democrat and one-time candidate for governor Andrew Gillum has opened up with more details of that fateful night in Miami when he was found in a hotel room passed out with a male prostitute. “At this point I’m like, ‘This is set up.'”

Kenneth-in-the-212: Don’t miss Kenneth’s weekly round-up of LGBTQ publications like Valentine’s hotties Franco & Roberto covering Hot Spots Magazine (below).

(cover image via Hot Spots Magazine)

The Advocate: A group of 185 actors came out in Germany to demand more LGBTQ+ diversity in film, television, and theater through a manifesto in a national newspaper. Among the issues raised is the fear of losing the opportunity to portray straight people due to biases in casting. “We are actors. We don’t have to be what we play. We act as though we were — that is our job.”

LA Times: Fox News Media has canceled “Lou Dobbs Tonight,” the program hosted by one of Donald Trump’s staunchest supporters. The cancellation comes a day after voting software company Smartmatic filed a $2.7 billion defamation suit against Fox News and three of its hosts — Dobbs, Maria Bartiromo and Jeanine Pirro.

AP News: Johnson & Johnson asked U.S. regulators Thursday to clear the world’s first single-dose COVID-19 vaccine, an easier-to-use option that could boost scarce supplies. The vaccine was 66% effective at preventing moderate to severe COVID-19, according to early findings from a study of 44,000 people, but it was 85% protective against the most serious symptoms.

Deadline: Christopher Plummer, who starred in The Sound of Music, won an Oscar for Beginners and was nominated for All the Money in the World and The Last Station, died peacefully today at his home in Connecticut, his family confirmed. Along with becoming the oldest person to win an Oscar, Plummer also won a pair of Emmys and two Tonys during a nearly 70-year career.

Attorney General Bill Barr Is Out

Attorney General Bill Barr (image – Flickr/WhiteHouse)

Donald Trump just tweeted the news that his Attorney General Bill Barr will be leaving his post.

“Just had a very nice meeting with Attorney General Bill Barr at the White House. Our relationship has been a very good one, he has done an outstanding job! As per letter, Bill will be leaving just before Christmas to spend the holidays with his family,” wrote Trump. “Deputy Attorney General Jeff Rosen, an outstanding person, will become Acting Attorney General. Highly respected Richard Donoghue will be taking over the duties of Deputy Attorney General. Thank you to all!”

There have been numerous reports for weeks that Trump was VERY unhappy Barr told the press no evidence of widespread voter fraud had been found by the Justice Department.

And so, out he goes…

Trump Fires Senior Official Responsible For Security Of Presidential Election

Donald Trump (image public domain/White House)

Donald Trump has fired Christopher Krebs, the Department of Homeland Security cyber chief who declared the 2020 general election was the most secure in U.S. history.

From the New York Times:

President Trump fired Christopher Krebs on Tuesday night, retaliating against his administration’s most senior official responsible for securing the presidential election.

Mr. Krebs, who has systematically disputed Mr. Trump’s baseless declarations in recent days that the presidency was stolen from him through fraudulent ballots and mysterious software glitches that changed millions of votes, had worked in the Department of Homeland Security.

The announcement came via Twitter, the same way Mr. Trump fired his defense secretary two weeks ago.

Mr. Trump seemed set off by a statement released by Homeland Security late last week, the product of a broad committee overseeing the elections, that declared the 2020 election “was the most secure in American history.”

Trump ‘Terminates’ Defense Secretary Via Tweet

L-R Donald Trump, Defense Secretary Mark Esper (images: Flickr/WhiteHouse – public domain)

Donald Trump took to Twitter this morning to announce the news that he had “terminated” Mark Esper as his Secretary of Defense.

From the New York Times:

Mr. Esper’s downfall had been expected for months, after he took the rare step in June of disagreeing publicly with Mr. Trump and saying that active-duty military troops should not be sent to control the wave of protests in American cities. The president, who had threatened to use the Insurrection Act to do exactly that, was furious, officials said.

Mr. Esper, 56, a former secretary of the Army and a former Raytheon executive, became defense secretary last July after Mr. Trump withdrew the nomination of Patrick M. Shanahan, the acting defense secretary, amid an F.B.I. inquiry into allegations from Mr. Shanahan’s former wife that he punched her in the stomach. Mr. Shanahan denied the accusations.

Mr. Shanahan had been standing in for Jim Mattis, who resigned as defense secretary in 2018, citing his own differences with the president.