News Round-Up: July 7, 2020

Craig Ramsay (via Instagram)

Some news items you might have missed:

InstaHunks: New American citizen Craig Ramsay (above) has a message for his fellow citizens – “Wear a f**king mask, America🇺🇸”

Washington Post: A long-acting drug injected every two months is more effective at preventing HIV than the pills most commonly used by people at risk of acquiring the infection. The injectable drug cabotegravir (tested on more than 4,500 men and transgender women who have sex with men) proved to be even better than oral drug Truvada in blocking the virus.

Pink News: It only took around 240 mixed-sex couples across more than 16 years, but executives for the UK reality series Strictly Come Dancing are now allegedly considering not one, but two same-sex couples for the show’s upcoming season.

Boy Culture: Daniel Ryan Maples, a white insurance agent wearing a red ‘Running the World Since 1776′ shirt, lost his ever-lovin’ shit when asked by a fellow customer to wear a mask inside Costco. He approached the other customer aggressively, shouting the words that will follow him for the rest of his miserable life: ‘I Feel Threatened.’

Indiana Lawyer: The Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Monday former Illinois Congressman Aaron Schock and his campaign committee, Schock for Congress, are off the hook regarding the law firm’s unpaid legal bills totaling $159,946.37, plus interest.

Provincetown Reimagined: The gay mecca’s acclaimed international film celebration will present a modified festival with drive-in and virtual screenings running July 16-19, 2020. The Festival will kick off with two nights of screenings at the Wellfleet Drive-In including Mischa Richter’s documentary, I AM A TOWN, shot entirely in Provincetown; the 2020 Sundance hit, SAVE YOURSELVES!; and a special night hosted by John Waters with film titles announced soon. The Festival will also feature virtual screenings with selections curated to speak to this moment in time.

Twitter: Still no official word as to why RuPaul deleted his Twitter account and wiped his Instagram clean last week, but Twitter user @cheritaisrandom posits it might have something to do with several old photos of RuPaul dressed in Confederate flag attire, including a 2013 Instagram post that appears to be captioned, “The South will rise again!”.

Podcast: Mayor Pete Surges In Iowa, Indiana Teen Stands Up For Himself, LGBTQ Representation On TV Hits All-Time High

The Randy Report podcast delivers the week's top stories in a quick, convenient podcast - 'the 60 Minutes of gay news - only shorter'

The Randy Report podcast delivers the week's top stories in a quick, convenient podcast - 'the 60 Minutes of gay news - only shorter'

In this week’s podcast:

• Mayor Pete Buttigieg has surged to number one in the latest polling for the upcoming Iowa caucuses

• Gay men in Malaysia have been sentenced to months in prison and being whipped with a cane for having sex at a private residence

• A gay teen heard the slur ‘faggot’ one time too many – and took care of it. Link to story at The Randy Reporttherandyreport.com/a-gay-teen-had-…g-called-fggot/

• Two male dancers were featured on the UK’s ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ and the world didn’t end. Link to the story on The Randy Reporttherandyreport.com/strictly-come-d…tunning-effect/

• Get ready small-town America – the queens are coming!

• Representation for the LGBTQ community on TV rose to an all-time high according to the ‘Where We Are On TV report from GLAAD

All that and more in this episode of The Randy Report.

If you enjoy catching up on LGBTQ news in a quick podcast, I’d appreciate it if you would share The Randy Report with your friends. I like to think of the podcast as ‘the 60 Minutes of gay news…only shorter.’

Hit the play button and thanks for listening 🙂

‘Strictly Come Dancing’ Features Same-Sex Partners To Stunning Effect

Johannes Radebe & Graziano di Prima (right couple - image via Instagram/BBC)
Johannes Radebe & Graziano di Prima (right couple – image via Instagram/BBC)

This past weekend the UK TV show Strictly Come Dancing put the spotlight on two male dancers partnering together in a routine.

The reality competition series, a precursor to ABC’s Dancing with the Stars in the U.S., gave professional dancers Johannes Radebe and Graziano di Prima a solo spot during a production number showcasing Emeli Sande singing “Shine.”

Radebe, who was eliminated last week with his celebrity partner Catherine Tyldesley, grew up in South Africa and is openly gay. In an interview with Hello! Magazine, he said, “I’ve never felt so liberated.”

“For the first time, I feel accepted for who I am,” Radebe told the publication. “That says so much about the people of this country.”

“To be able to dance with a friend I respect and adore is joyous,” he continued. “There’s bromance galore between us, but there were no male and female roles, just free movement. It was beautiful, classy and elegant.”

 

View this post on Instagram

 

Love knows no boundaries. 👬🌈@grazianodiprima ❤️

A post shared by Johannes Radebe (@johannesradebe) on

In advance of the performance, the 32-year-old dancer shared with The Sun that a same-sex dance would have never happened when he was dancing on the South African edition of Strictly.

Growing up near Johannesburg, Radebe said he was bullied from an early age and was called names like “sissy boy” frequently. At the age of 17, he was attacked with a baseball bat by a boy at school who called him “f*gg*t.”

That journey to now made Sunday’s performance that much more meaningful for him.

“When I got to the UK it was beautiful – for the first time I felt liberated,” he explained. “It’s just people accepting you for who you are no matter what you do. So now I feel more confident and comfortable because of my surroundings.”

Radebe posted photos of himself and di Prima with the caption, “Love knows no boundaries” with rainbow and heart emojis and tagged di Prima.

Di Prima, who is heterosexual (he proposed to his girlfriend live on stage earlier this year), also celebrated the moment taking to Twitter writing, “REPRESENTATION always matters! Unforgettable moment, dancing with you @johannesradebe @bbcstrictly”

The response on social media to the same-sex pair was mixed ranging from euphoria (including praise from former champ Joe McFadden) to some naysayers:

Former Strictly professional dancer Robin Windsor scolded the negative comments asking people to “just enjoy the artistry.”

Watch the full performance below. Radebe and di Prima enter around the 1:00 mark.

Ben Cohen leaves “Strictly Come Dancing” with a champion’s heart

I’m not happy to report that rugby champ and anti-bullying superstar Ben Cohen got bumped from BBC’s “Strictly Come Dancing” last night after a 9 week run.

As he received the news on the live broadcast, Ben had this to say: “When would I get to dress like this every day, wear all the lycra and maybe not a top!  Now I can dance at my kid’s parties. Kristina has been great, I’ve thrown her into walls, dropped her a few times and she has been great – thanks ever so much for putting up with me!”

Like a great champion, Ben took the loss with further grace posting this on his Facebook page:

Thank you all so much for the support during my time on Strictly Come Dancing. I had a blast and met some great people. A big Thank You to Kristina Rihanoff for teaching me to dance. You have a patient of a Saint and made my Journey fun and exciting. Thanks Ben

With typical good nature, Ben’s hard work showed throughout the competition, but always accompanied with a smile and light-hearted fun.

Whether on the dance floor, the rugby field or fighting bullying, Ben continues to inspire.

And speaking of inspiration, let’s take one more look at one of the highlights of Ben’s run on “Strictly Come Dancing” – his shirtless and passionate Paso Doble.


Ben Cohen & Kristine Rihanoff – Week 9 of Strictly Come Dancing – The Charleston

Ben Cohen gives some period style to the Charleston on “Strictly Come Dancing”

Tonight rugby superstar and LGBT anti-bullying champ took to the Strictly Come Dancing floor with partner Kristina Rihanoff to give their best on the Charleston, dancing to “No Diggity.”

Metro reports on how it all went down:

While Mark Benton remains the favourite to leave the competition this weekend after two consecutive weeks in the dance-off, the rugby ace failed to impress the judges as he tackled the Charleston with Kristina Rihanoff.

And despite his best efforts he scored just 27 points from the judges, putting him one point behind Benton and potentially placing him in the danger zone.

‘It wasn’t the most electrifying Charleston I’ve ever seen,’ complained Craig Revel Horwood.

‘There was no cross what so ever and you lacked any freedom of movement… this is what it’s about quirkiness.’

Meanwhile Len Goodman added: ‘The lifts were great but it lacked any kind of freedom in the movement.’


Ben Cohen and partner Kristina Rihanoff cut loose doing the Charleston on “Strictly Come Dancing”

Ben Cohen shows  – if you’ve got it, USE it!

Ben Cohen has shown very strong partnering skills throughout the competition

Kristin Rihanoff celebrates at the end of the number

Ben Cohen competes in Week 8 of Strictly Come Dancing

Ben Cohen and Kristina Rihanoff in a spectacular lift while dancing the American Smooth

Ben Cohen (rugby superstar and founder of the anti-bullying StandUp Foundation) and Kristina Rihanoff dance the American Smooth to Alicia Keyes’ ‘Fallin’.

The dance garnered 32 points, which matched the teams highest score to date, and was 6 points higher than last week’s Jive.

Ben gets better and better each week, and Kristina’s choreography wisely takes advantage of Ben’s athleticism and strong partnering skills.

Go Team Cohen/Rihanoff!

Ben Cohen delivers a sexy, shirtless Paso Doble on Strictly Come Dancing

A shirtless Ben Cohen stops the Strictly Come Dancing show with a sexy shirtless Paso Doble

Rugby star and LGBT ally Ben Cohen performed a shirtless Paso Doble on this week’s Strictly Come Dancing.

Ben’s athleticism really comes out here.  Watching him through the competition, he’s showing really strong partnering skills.  Besides his obvious strength, his eye contact with Kristina is constant and you see that they are in sync as a dance couple.

Kristina’s choreography continues to impress.  She finds ways to show Ben off to his strengths without diminishing her own.

And then, well, there’s just the fact that he’s BEN COHEN.   Shirtless!  Whoo-hoo!

Ben even does a little post-dance partnering with judge Bruno Tonioli:

Ben Cohen and Kristina Rihanoff

A shirtless Ben Cohen chats on his Paso Doble after dancing