0 Comments · Wednesday, October 2, 2013
Local News Stations Restructure After Broadcasts Mistaken for Parodies of News Coverage: There are things you can almost guarantee
will be on the local TV news if for some reason you find yourself stuck
watching it. They
are: things on fire, poor people committing crimes and things about
people in the community doing something nice :)
2 Comments · Wednesday, September 4, 2013
Time has a way of healing, but Jered is always in my
thoughts. The month of September brings him back full force.
by German Lopez
Pay-to-stay jail policy criticized, locals react to LGBT rulings, council OKs streetcar funding
The Hamilton County Jail charges its inmates a fee for
incarceration, and a new report from the American Civil Liberties Union
of Ohio (ACLU) suggests the practice harms low-income inmates and raises little money for the county. CityBeat
got an exclusive early look at the report, which scrutinized three
counties for their pay-to-stay policies. Among the three samples,
Hamilton County had the second lowest fees and did the second
least harm to low-income people, according to the report. Although the
ACLU was hopeful the report and the election of a new sheriff would
inspire some change, Hamilton County officials told CityBeat that no changes are planned.
The U.S. Supreme Court yesterday struck down the federal ban on same-sex marriage, and some local and state leaders had a few things to say about it.
The reactions seem to vary depending on a partisan basis, with
Republicans in opposition and Democrats in favor. Rest assured: Here at CityBeat, we favor giving equal rights to people no matter their sexual orientation or gender identity.
City Council yesterday approved funding and accountability measures for the Cincinnati streetcar project
and funding for development at Fourth and Race streets, which will
include a downtown grocery store. The streetcar measures close the
project’s $17.4 million budget gap by issuing more debt and pulling
funding from various capital projects, including infrastructure
improvements around the Horseshoe Casino. The accountability measures,
which were initially introduced by Vice Mayor Roxanne Qualls, require
the city manager to update City Council with a timeline of key
milestones, performance measures, an operating plan, staffing
assessments and monthly progress reports.
Commentary: “The Little Engine That Could.”
Make sure to check out CityBeat’s extensive LGBT coverage for our Pride Issue here, including a mini-profile of Councilman Chris Seelbach and his partner.
It’s local election season. In the next five months, City Council will meet only seven times, down from the typical 14.
Odis Jones is leaving his post as Cincinnati’s director of economic development
to become CEO of the Detroit Public Lighting Authority, a city-run utility
operated by an independent board. Jones was known at City Council
meetings for making passionate pitches for various economic development
projects, including the most recent plans for Fourth and Race streets.
He told Business Courier he wants to go to Detroit to play a role in the revitalization
of his hometown: “My mother always said, 'If you see a good fight, get
in it.' I'm in it.”
The Ohio House voted to ban red-light cameras
despite arguments that the cameras have reduced
traffic accidents and saved lives. An Ohio Senate vote is expected in
NASA is teaming up with Italy and Japan on a mission to Mercury.
Researchers found wearing a T-shirt with the letter “T” on it makes men more attractive. Critics of the study argue attractive men would be better with no shirt — or pants — at all.
by German Lopez
U.S. Supreme Court strikes down federal ban on same-sex marriage
The U.S. Supreme Court today struck down the federal
Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) in a ruling that effectively requires the
federal government to recognize same-sex marriages for couples who
reside in states where same-sex marriage is legal.
The DOMA ruling also sets a powerful historical precedent by extending equal protection rights to gay and lesbian individuals.In another ruling, the Supreme Court vacated a case on California’s Proposition 8, which banned same-sex marriage in that state, and effectively sent the case back down to a lower court that deemed Proposition 8 unconstitutional. The ruling means California will likely begin giving marriage licenses to same-sex couples, but the ruling’s effects will not go beyond California’s borders.
For gay and lesbian Ohioans, the DOMA ruling adds yet another incentive to legalize same-sex marriage in the state. If FreedomOhio’s efforts to get the issue on the ballot in 2014 are successful, Ohio’s gay couples will have their marriages recognized at all levels of government. (The group previously aimed for 2013, but it now says it needs more time.)
So far, it remains unclear whether the ruling will extend
to same-sex couples who get married in other states but live in Ohio. If so, Ohio gay couples could get married in Massachusetts, return to Ohio and be eligible for federal marriage benefits — but not state marriage benefits. Legal experts and federal officials will surely debate the
issue in the coming months to develop a clearer answer.
Still, there’s been a lot of cheering and jubilation about
the historical rulings, which are widely seen as victories for LGBT rights. Below are some of
those reactions from local and state leaders, gathered through
interviews and statements.Also, make sure to check out CityBeat's Pride Issue for more coverage on LGBT issues.
Councilman Chris Seelbach, Cincinnati’s first openly gay council member:
“It’s pretty amazing. Just as President Obama when he
announced his support for marriage equality, this feels like just as
much of a milestone, if not more because of the legal significance of
the rulings. This is proof that the tides have turned and the laws are
changing. We are realizing full equality for LGBT people across this
“The fact that they used the equal protection clause means
this case will be used across the country for every type of law that
has an impact on LGBT people. The Supreme Court just set a new precedent for
the rights of any government to discriminate against gays and lesbians.
It’s far broader than just the repeal of DOMA, which in itself is an
incredible feat. But the precedent that it’s setting for scrutiny on the
basis of sexual orientation will have an effect on laws throughout this
country for decades to come.”
Ian James, co-founder of FreedomOhio:
“We are elated that the Supreme Court has repealed DOMA
and in effect rejected Proposition 8. These decisions are proof that the
tide of acceptance for all couples is turning in this country, and we
have taken two more important steps toward true equality.
“This important moment, however, does not change the
reality that Ohio still has a constitutional amendment banning
same-gender marriage. Ohio voters can address the civil rights issue of
our generation by voting for the Freedom to Marry and Religious Freedom
amendment. We are elated and our resolve has been doubled to collect
signatures. The journey continues. We will bring marriage equality to
Ohio in November, 2014.”
Chris Redfern, chairman of the Ohio Democratic Party:“I’m
deeply thankful that the Defense of Marriage Act has finally been
struck from our country’s books, and that millions across the nation and
Ohio are one step closer to equal and fair treatment under the law.
DOMA implemented discrimination into the highest law of the land, and
it’s a great day that this ugly reminder of a different time is finally
gone. “Ohio Democrats are honored to stand with our LGBT brothers and sisters
in the fight to earn marriage equality for all, and continue our march
to overcome the prejudice of the past. But despite our victories across
the nation, Ohio Republicans in the Statehouse and Governor’s office
remain committed to keeping prejudice enshrined in law.” John Boehner, U.S. Speaker of the House and Republican from West Chester, Ohio:
“Congress passed the Defense of Marriage Act on an
overwhelmingly bipartisan basis and President (Bill) Clinton signed it into
law. The House intervened in this case because the constitutionality of a
law should be judged by the Court, not by the president unilaterally.
While I am obviously disappointed in the ruling, it is always critical
that we protect our system of checks and balances. A robust national
debate over marriage will continue in the public square, and it is my
hope that states will define marriage as the union between one man and
German Lopez, gay staff writer at CityBeat:
“Cool.”Danny Cross, CityBeat editor: “DOMA was a real horseshit piece of legislation, and we're happy those old bastards in the Supreme Court did the right thing.”Update (1:47 p.m.): Added more reactions.
by German Lopez
Council to vote on budget, Senate reveals budget plan, FitzGerald supports LGBT rights
City Council will vote on a budget plan today that will include no public safety layoffs, but about 60 other public employees will likely be jobless as a result of the plan in a couple weeks. The budget proposal comes after months of city officials claiming public safety layoffs were unavoidable without the city's plan to lease its parking assets to the Port Authority. But the parking plan is now being held up in court, and the layoffs were avoided anyway.CityBeat commentary: "Good News Reveals Budget Deception."The Ohio Senate revealed a budget plan yesterday that made some major tax changes to the Ohio House proposal, but the budget will still effectively defund Planned Parenthood, fund anti-abortion crisis pregnancy centers and forgo the Medicaid expansion. The Ohio Senate plan passes on the Ohio House's 7-percent across-the-board income tax cut for all Ohioans and instead focuses on a 50-percent tax cut for small businesses. The bill also undid controversial language that forced public universities and colleges to decide between out-of-state tuition rates and providing out-of-state students with documents required for voting. CityBeat covered the conservative social policies in the Ohio House budget plan, which remain in the Ohio Senate bill, here.Democratic gubernatorial candidate Ed FitzGerald came out in support of same-sex marriage in a May 17 interview with Outlook Columbus, putting him at odds with Republican opponent and incumbent Gov. John Kasich, who is running for re-election in 2014. Kasich previously implied support for same-sex civil unions in an interview with a local TV news station, but his spokesperson later walked back that support and reiterated the governor's opposition to same-sex civil unions and marriage. Same-sex marriage could be on the ballot in 2013 through FreedomOhio's efforts, which CityBeat covered in greater detail here.Twenty were arrested yesterday during the Hamilton County Sheriff Department's sex offender compliance sweep.A University of Cincinnati study found CPR training does little good, and most people do a lousy job at the life-saving technique. Some Cincinnati businesses are taking more steps to protect their intellectual property rights in light of high rates of intellectual property theft in Asia.The leader of the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber of Commerce is set to leave.A new study suggests humans began walking upright because of rock climbing.
by Danny Cross
Posted In: LGBT Issues
at 04:56 PM | Permalink
Macke in a statement apologizes for calling MSNBC's Rachel Maddow a boy
Fox 19 on Nov. 9 apologized for an ignorant
comment made by news anchor Tricia Macke on her personal Facebook page
last month. Macke’s comment, “Rachel Maddow is such an angry young man,”
sparked outrage among gay-rights organizations for its depiction of
MSNBC’s openly gay broadcaster as a man.
According to screen shots published by the Gay &
Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), Macke appeared to have
missed the point when called out by a commenter for targeting Maddow’s
sexual identity. Macke wrote, “you are right… I should have said
antagonistic” but then told another commenter, “I knew what I was
GLAAD wrote: “Tricia Macke undoubtedly tried to insult Maddow because of
their political differences, rather than simply because Maddow is gay —
but her comments went much further than insulting Maddow's political
leanings, and took issue with Maddow's gender, revealing an anti-gay (or
at least anti-gender-nonconforming?) bias underlying her political
Fox 19 posted its apology along with a statement from Macke
describing her comment as insensitive and inappropriate. Macke wrote: “I apologize
to Ms. Maddow and any others who may have been offended by my comments,
as they do not reflect my firm beliefs in individual and equal rights,
and they certainly do not represent the opinions or position of my
Maddow, an openly gay MSNBC political analyst, is one of
America’s highest-profile news personalities. She’s also a Stanford
graduate with a doctorate in political science from Oxford University,
where she was a Rhodes Scholar.
by Jac Kern
at 01:18 PM | Permalink
A downtown nightclub might not be the most
likely spot to find a pop-up gallery, local visual artists, independent
filmmakers and other creatives, but that’s exactly what’s happening Friday at
Luxe. RAWartists Cincinnati is a local chapter of RAW:natural born artists
which describes itself as an “international
independent arts organization that hand-selects and spotlights independent
creatives in visual art, film, fashion, music, hair and makeup artistry,
photography, models and performing art.” The organization gives artists in
various cities the tools to produce and showcase their work to the public. RAW
hosts RADIATE, an event featuring a
fashion show, short film screening, art gallery and music from Sweet Ray Laurel
and Honey Combs. The artravaganza begins at 8 p.m., followed by an after-party of drinks and dancing at midnight. Tickets are $15 at the door.
A belly dancing
convention in Cincinnati? Yup, that’s happening this
weekend. Sharonville Convention Center fills with dancers, music, Middle
Eastern culture and lots of exposed tummies Friday-Sunday. Visitors can attend
for belly dancing performances as well as workshops. Work those hips!
This weekend brings the Midwest
Black Family Reunion to town for the 24th year.
Celebrate African-American culture with Gospel and R&B music, lots of food,
guest speakers, a parade and more, Friday-Saturday at Sawyer Point.
The City Flea
takes over Washington Park Saturday from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. You never know what
kinds of treasures you’ll find at this urban flea market: from vintage boots
and handmade rings to terrariums and refurbished furniture. Re-fuel with noms
from Fireside Pizza, Queen City Cookies, Taste of Belgium and more tasty local
Pull your rainbow
spandex bodysuit out of storage, because it’s time for another local LGBTQ
celebration! Northside Pride Festival
kicks off at 5 p.m. Saturday and
continues ‘til closing time for the neighborhood’s bars and businesses. Start
off with a party at Hoffner Park where there will be free grill-out grub,
Vitamin Water, HIV testing, music and more, then make your way through
Northside hot spots for more fun and specials all night long. Participating
businesses include The Serpent, Junkers Tavern, Chameleon and Northside Tavern,
which hosts a Chicken Lays An Egg fashion show 5-7 p.m. DJs and drag queens for
The Taft Museum highlights
animals in art this weekend with the Third Sunday Funday series for families. Kids
can look for animals in works throughout the museum, make animal puppets, get
some wildlife face painting and even meet some critters from the Cincinnati
Zoo. The free event runs 1-4 p.m. Sunday.
by German Lopez
Posted In: LGBT Issues
at 10:56 AM | Permalink
Jim Hensen Company says it won’t partner with Chick-Fil-A over company’s anti-gay stance
Even the Muppets disapprove of Chick-Fil-A’s anti-gay
policies. On Friday, the Jim Henson Company released a statement on
Facebook claiming the company known for the Muppets would no longer be
partnering up with Chick-Fil-A.
“The Jim Henson Company has celebrated and embraced
diversity and inclusiveness for over fifty years and we have notified
Chick-Fil-A that we do not wish to partner with them on any future
endeavors,” the company said in the statement.
The statement went on to announce the company, under the
order of CEO Lisa Henson, will be donating payments received from
Chick-Fil-A to the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), one of the biggest pro-gay-rights groups in the
The news comes after a week of scrutiny following company
president Dan Cathy’s declaration that he is against gay marriage.
Politicians piled on to the news.
Same-sex marriage opponents praised the company for its stance, while
prominent Democrats and Republicans criticized Chick-Fil-A for the
The company has long held an anti-gay stance. It has
publicly supported and funded anti-gay groups, and the company was
reported to be co-sponsoring a marriage conference with the anti-gay
group Pennsylvania Family Institute last year.
Chick-Fil-A has also been known for promoting
fundamentalist Christian values. Founder Samuel Truett Cathy has
identified himself as a staunch Christian, and the chain’s restaurants
close on Sundays to respect Christian values. Even the company’s
corporate purpose statement invokes religion: “To glorify God by being a
faithful steward of all that is entrusted to us."
The company has also been criticized for religious
discrimination in the past. In 2002, a former Muslim employee sued the
company because he claimed he was fired for not participating in a group
prayer to Jesus Christ. The lawsuit was settled out of court for an
Local organizations push for inclusion and acceptance
0 Comments · Wednesday, June 27, 2012
For too long, being gay meant life on the fringes. There
were certain places you could hang out, certain people you could talk
to, certain ways you could act. Fed up with accepting “how it’s always
been,” these young organizers are creating safe, accepting spaces where
there were none before — and finding out they were amongst friends the
by Danny Cross
Coinciding events are in response to recent assault on gay students in Oxford
Cincinnati and Miami University student organizations will hold
rallies at 5 p.m. Thursday in response to the March 24 assault of two
students — one from UC and one from Miami — on the Miami
campus. The events are meant to show support for GLBT people and call
for an end to hate crimes.
student Michael Bustin and a male friend were reportedly walking home
from a drag show when someone yelled a derogatory slur at them. Bustin's friend was then attacked by four men who also reportedly assaulted Bustin when he tried to help, according to
WLWT-TV. The two men had been holding hands during their walk home.
Miami University sent a memo to the community and reached
out to Bustin soon afterward.
The rallies’ Facebook
page says the other man was a University of Cincinnati student. The
police have released a sketch of one of the accused attackers and are
seeking the public’s help to find those involved.
Both events will begin
at 5 p.m. Those attending the Miami rally are encouraged to wear
"Love is the New Label/White Out Hate" shirts or just white
T-shirts or tops. After the rally, participants will line up holding
hands in a demonstration of solidarity and to show that “no one
deserves to be hurt for showing affection.”
More from the rallies’
Facebook page: “We, the students of the LGBTQA alliances of Miami
University and University of Cincinnati, stand united in our demand
for a safe places to live, learn, work and show affection. It is
unacceptable for anyone to be assaulted, but it is especially
repulsive for the victims to be targeted because of their race,
ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, or any
The Miami rally will
take place at the Phi Delt Gates on the Miami Campus, while the UC event will take place
at the corner of Martin Luther King Drive and Clifton Avenue. The
events are being organized by Miami Spectrum and UC Alliance.
For more information,
click here or search on Facebook: “Emergency Action: Miami & UC Unite Against