View from the Suburbs: Bits ‘n Pieces

This little dab of beans came from tonight's first picking. A couple of sad radishes came along for the ride.

The rain these last couple of days has helped all the plants in my little kitchen garden, those in the pots and beds, and, more than any others, the grass.

So the meager, little first picking of beans this evening seems just as interesting as most of the news items on TV, though there are a few things that have happened for which I have two cents:

British Petroleum:  They’ve promoted the brand BP rather than British Petroleum for a long time here in Houston.  On billboards and in other advertising, they’ve seemed to want to hide their real identity and appear to the consumer to be an American company.   After the explosion at their Texas City plant, British Petroleum came across as a denier, just like now with the gulf well, not wanting to own up to all the safety problems.  That British Petroleum is directly involved in another major catastrophe is not a big surprise.

Ted Haggard:  He’s started a new church in Colorado Springs.  Why?  He’s the type of person that wants to have the stage lights on him, which is really what many of these televangelists want . . . and, of course, the big money.  This guy is really just kind of creepy.  I’ve said it before:  nobody starts experimenting with gay sex–if they’re straight (or vice versa) in their 50s.  I’m betting that even after all the hoopla about his “change”, Haggard is starting a church back in Colorado Springs because it’s a place he’s comfortable in and he’ll be in a situation that he’s comfortable in.  It’s not that much different than getting a job as a mechanic for a Ford dealership after you’ve worked in a similar position for a Chevy dealer for 20 years.  I don’t doubt that in the not too distant future (if it’s still not occurring), there’ll be some “prayer time” with some guys, like Mike Jones, the male prostitute that he was seeing for three years.  (Three years?  That’s a relationship, isn’t it?)

Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell:  A lot of promises were made by candidate Obama, and he and the Democrats got a lot of both verbal and monetary support because of those promises.  DADT has almost  80% support from the American public, yet this administration is hemming and hawing about getting this dinosaur repealed.  I know that gay people are not the only ones that are disappointed after electing a president and a congress that supported him.  Health care reform is another example.  The sad thing is this administration with the majority in Congress has the opportunity to make some much needed changes, but for quite awhile now they’ve all just looked like woosies.

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HBO Documentary Takes a Look at the Range of Gender and Sexuality; Also Finds Homophobes Likely Hiding Homosexual Attractions

Kinsey ScaleAlfred Kinsey first introduced the Kinsey Scale, which said that a person’s sexuality fit somewhere on a range from 0 (exclusively heterosexual) to 6 (exclusively homosexual), way back in the 1940s. Of course, the deniers , groups like Focus on the Family and other religious organizations, continue with their ignorant tirades against this.

HBO’s documentary, Middle Sexes: Redefining He and She, explores this rainbow of sexuality. From the synopsis: “Researchers cite examples from the natural world, where species display a wide range of sexual variation, and point out that humans show more diversity than the strict male-female dichotomy.” This will certainly bring about more shouts from those who are determined that only 100% heterosexuality is natural.

One of the most telling segments takes a look at homophobia and suggests as many others have before: that many homophobes are really just repressed homosexuals. Take a look at the clip:

“Love Not Laws” the Best Yet in Countering N.O.M.’s “Propaganda Storm”

OK, so I wasn’t going to get my blog involved in something that’s being done so well, both on television and on the Internet: countering the propaganda that the National Organization for Marriage (which is a total misnomer, because they’re really against marriage, except for their own special interest group). In fact, if you want to see a lot of great vids parodying NOM’s what some are calling a “cult classic” (And, yes, “cult” is the operative word here.), just do a quick youtube search for “NOM parody”, and you’ll see how creative gay people can be.

But anyway, this one is the best I’ve seen so far, and the people in it are actually who they are, unlike NOM’s agitprop.

This accompanies the video on the youtube page:

Love Not Laws is a coalition of people of various ages, races, and beliefs, who came together to show solidarity and support for same-sex marriage. In response to videos that are circulating the internet that use fear and falsehoods to promote an offensive agenda of ‘separate and unequal’, Love Not Laws created a video that was grounded in compassion, emotion, and heart.

If you oppose same-sex marriage, we hope that this video will cause you to examine your own biases. If you are in support of same-sex marriage, we hope that this video inspires you to act. And if you feel that you are too small, or that your efforts won’t matter, we ask you to remember that we were a group of people who, individually thought they could do nothing… but together, were able to accomplish something bigger than all of us.

Sean Penn Wins Best Actor and Dustin Lance Black Wins for Best Screenwriting for MILK; Watch Their Moving Acceptance Speeches at the Oscars

I only watched bits and pieces of the the Oscar Awards Show last night.  I hardly ever watch it all the way through; I’m too much of a remote control channel flipper.  Even more, I hardly ever know many of the movies up for the awards because I’m just not a big movie fan.  It takes a lot of recommendations from friends to get me to go see almost any movie.  I suppose it’s because at the movie theater, I miss being able to have that remote in hand in order to flip the channel when a dull moment comes along.

So to tell the truth, I haven’t seen MILK yet, even though it’s been playing at the River Oaks Theatre since it came out.  Now I think I’ll go.  Mostly because of Sean Penn.  Not because Sean Penn plays Harvey Milk and got the Oscar for doing so.  No, it’s because I was fortunate to be watching last night when he accepted his award (luckily, I hadn’t flipped to another channel).  I was definitely touched and choked up by what he said.  Last night, I thought someone might be very quick and get the clip up somewhere on the net, but no one had.  Tonight I found it, watched it, and was very impressed once again.  Take a look.  It’s worth it.

I guess my flippting channels caused me to miss out on another great acceptance speech by the winner of the writer of MILK, Dustin Lance Black, who won the Oscar for Best Original Screenplay.  I don’t know much about this guy, but from hearing a bit of his own story in his speech, Black himself might be worthy of having his own story told in a book, or perhaps even on the big screen.  Watch his moving acceptance speech; this guy is the real deal.