But Look at the Bright Side….

From Queer Channel Media:

Marriage in Md.: Celebrations and considerations

Because of the Defense of Marriage Act, we are now stuck in an inherent legal contradiction: We will be legally married and receive most of the benefits that straight married couples receive from the state, but our marriages will not be recognized by the federal government, as DOMA defines a spouse as one of the opposite sex. This can trigger numerous problems and are worth consideration before marrying. It creates significant inequities that burden all same-sex couples (for example, tax implications, lack of Social Security spousal benefits, or standard health insurance coverage as an employment benefit), but some of these issues have the potential to create immediate harm for individual families. Some examples:

• Immigration. Marrying a same-sex spouse residing in the U.S. could result in the denial of the granting or an extension of a non-immigrant visa. The marriage could be viewed as the non-resident spouse’s intent to remain permanently in the U.S. The federal government won’t recognize the marriage for any beneficial purposes, but will recognize it to deny the non-resident their visa.

• Needs-Based Public Assistance. If you or your partner are receiving public assistance and you choose to marry, then the spouse’s income will be included in determining eligibility.

• Adoption. Aside from DOMA, there are other possible implications. For example, if you want to adopt a child, particularly internationally, your marital status could keep you from having a child placed in your home. Many countries will not permit adoptions to gay couples, and if you are married, you would not be able to submit an adoption application as an individual.

But always remember: No matter how screwy marriage law is, under Maryland law you’ll always have the right to discriminate against trans people!

Emphasis on “always.”

The civil rights team that had success in Howard and Baltimore counties will press ahead in 2013 to secure gender identity rights in Maryland. Gender Rights Maryland — the state’s only civil rights organization exclusively representing trans persons — and the Howard County and Baltimore County chapters of PFLAG announced last week they will continue the alliance they formed this past year in passing gender identity and expression legislation in two Maryland counties.

The alliance will mark the second year of cooperation between the organizations that resulted in the passage of comprehensive anti-discrimination protections for trans and gender non-conforming persons in Howard and Baltimore counties in 2012. The organizations plan to take the measures to the Maryland State Legislature and to the Prince George’s County Council for passage in 2013.

Uh huh….

The organizations plan to take the measures to the Maryland State Legislature and to the Prince George’s County Council for passage in 2013 while all the people in Maryland who currently possess that right to discriminate against trans people are off not donating any time or money to getting rid of that existing right to discriminate against trans people but, instead, are spending time and money on Maryland marriages.

Pic of the Day: Nov. 30, 2012

20121130 - 01

Austin, Texas – September 1998.

Pic of the Day: Nov. 29, 2012 (Bonus Fungus Edition)

Madeline Island, Wisconsin, Labor Day Weekend 2001.

Pic of the Day: Nov. 29, 2012

New Orleans, October 1998.

Have fun storming the consumerism!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Pic of the Day: Nov. 28, 2012

Butler v. UNLV, Nov. 12, 2011 – at Carver Hawkeye Arena, Iowa City, Iowa (first game of a doubleheader – and, yes, the seats filled in a bit for the second game, which involved the Iowa Hawkeyes.)

HRC = Heinous Rotten Con

From Kelly Winters via Facebook:

[T]he Human Rights Campaign has  marginalized transgender health care in its Municipal Equality Index. Cities are required to provide domestic partner benefits to receive a perfect 100% score but are not required to provide transgender health benefits, which are trivialized as “bonus points.” The HRC perpetuated this very same disparity for many years in the Corporate Equality Index, which was corrected only very recently (for benefits beginning Jan 1, 2012). Perfect “100%” scores for city governments, such as San Diego’s, that deny equitable health benefits to trans and TS employees are fraudulent and should be called out as such. The American Medical Association, American Psychological Association, American Psychiatric Association, World Professional Association for Transgender Health and many other medical authorities have stated that medical transition care, for those who need it, is medically necessary care. For many, it is literally lifesaving.  The HRC has once again broadcast a very public message that devalues the worth of trans lives as less than equal.

MEI?

Meh!

Business as usual at the Rhode Island Avenue Cesspool of Transphobia.

I’m still waiting for the first ‘moving forward without trans-inclusion is a regrettable necessity’ purple-n-yellow dogwhistle in anticipation of the new Congress.

Oy….

Her?

This isn’t even in the realm of a ‘HBS Syndrome crowd vs. everyone else’ pissing match: RuPaul is a he and he makes no claim to be anything else.

With “nationally recognized LGBT leader”s like this, who needs the radphlegms?

Apparently Carnival Cruise Lines is Run by the Same Republicans Who Tried to Rationalize Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock

Part of me hates having to write about this at all – much less again – given that, usually, when “drag” pops up in LGBT discourse it is being used to smother trans people via use of some token drag presence to ‘prove’ T-inclusiveness.  The idea of any cruise make me nauseous – but not from seasickness; and the idea of a cruise featuring 30 or so of the stars of RuPaul’s Drag Race makes me want to go back in time and allow Torquemada to have his way with me.

I look so good flayed and in boiling oil, after all – call it Gangcatholic Style (apologies to PSY.)

Of course, the spectacle of The John seeming to give a damn about whether or not gay men in drag are covered by the trans-inclusion language of gay rights laws is well….

making 2007 roll over in its grave (which, I think, might be located somewhere in Oz.)

I, however, am posting again because of this – from Daily Kos:

That drag on the “Drag Stars At Sea” cruise was banned for everyone but performers on stage was late-breaking news to cruise-goers and came as quite a surprise to many. The travel agency who collaborated with Carnival on marketing this cruise, Al and Chuck Travel, who seem to be a major sponsor of the reality show Rupaul’s Drag Race, tried some damage control on their Facebook page, saying it wasn’t discriminatory toward drag, merely all “costumes” gay and straight.

Carnival was however comfortable hosting an elaborate Halloween costume contest on previous cruise among a handful of other examples drag travelers found.

The agency’s response included this strange declaration:

Finally, Drag Stars At Sea is a cruise venue for you to meet the stars of RuPaul’s Drag Race UP CLOSE AND PERSONAL. Just as you would not go in costume (other than on Halloween) to a club to see them perform, neither should you on the GLORY.

This is why I suspect a connection to the 2012 Republican senatorial campaign efforts – not the de rigueur racism, generalized misogyny and overt embrace of rape, but the overall disconnect from anything remotely connected to reality.

I can’t stand bars – and, yes, that includes drag bars.

However, I actually have been inside a few.  And, though its probably been at least 5 or 6 years since I’ve set foot in one for any reason, I suspect that nothing has really changed about bars in general ordrag bars specifically during that time.

So, I’ll repeat: I actually have been inside a few – which would appear to be something that whoever wrote that publicity disaster can not say.  As the author of the DKos piece remarks:

I don’t know what his perspective is, but from my perspective, lots of people feel moved to dress in drag to go see a drag performance.

Alas, however, it gets better (or, perhaps, worse from Carnival’s position.)  From the comments:

Just as you would not go in costume (other than on Halloween) to a club to see them perform, neither should you on the GLORY.

No one would EVER do that!

Except Star Wars fans…and people lining up around the block for any one of the Marvel Comics-based films…and little girls at Disney Princess shows…and folks attending screenings of the Rocky Horror Picture Show (some of them – gasp – in drag!)

I sense a stinging inclusion-rejoinder coming from Trekkies and Whovians, but I digress….

I recall seeing a documentary about Rocky Horror some years back – possibly on its 25th anniversary – and part of it was filmed at either a screening of the movie or some special gettogether to mark the anniversary (I have no idea if there are Rocky Horror-specific conventions or not.)  Tim Curry walked onstage – wearing a very nice three-piece suit, looking as thoroughly male as he’s ever looked or ever could look.  He looks out at the crowd and remarks, “My god! I’m the only one here who’s not dressed like me!”

I might be off by a word or two on the quote, but you get the idea…

unless you’re as clueless as the Carnival folks.

Right now, I’m wondering if any of the bloviating (however justified it may be; keep in mind that a significnt amount of the anger over this is because Carnival decided to announce its City of Houston Ordinance No. 28-42.4-esque policy after many, many people had booked and paid for the cruise) will lead anyone who might be in a position to do so send a crew of trans women onto the cruise – people in various stages of transition, from beginning crossdresser to fully-transitioned – to announce their status (along with whatever sorts of legal identification their states of residence might saddle them with; I’m sure someone from Ohio or Tennessee could be located) and demand to know the applicability of the policy to them.

I have the utmost confidence that HRC will put one of its many attorneys who are trans women on that right away…

or not.

How Many of the People Now Complaining About a Drag Cruise that Bans Drag Have Ever Said Anything About So-Called LGB(T) Organizations that Effectively Ban Trans People from Being Their Employees?

From The John:

Multiple passengers, who say they have tickets for Carnival Cruises’ upcoming “Drag Stars at Sea” cruise, say Carnival sent them an email informing them that passengers will be banned form dressing in drag on the drag cruise, under penalty of being kicked of the cruise.

Carnival attracts a number of families with children and for this reason; we strive to present a family friendly atmosphere. It is important to us that all guests are comfortable with every aspect of the cruise. Although we realize this group consists solely of adults, we nonetheless expect all guests to recognize that minors are onboard and, refrain from engaging in inappropriate conduct in public areas.

Arrangements have been made for drag performances in the main theater featuring stars from LOGO TV. These functions will be private and only the performers are permitted to dress in drag while in the theater. Guests are not allowed to dress in drag for the performances or in public areas at any time during the cruise.

From a comment thereto:

Will they be strictly enforcing gender roles and stereotypes throughout the cruise? I hope that no man walks on deck in flip flops and that all women are appropriately clothed in skirts and blouses or dresses. Males with earrings? Surely they cannot be seen in public. What about a woman with a masculine looking cap/hat?

Again from Carnival (though it just as easily could have come from a notice about any HRC money-vortex event from its days of having not even a pathetic token trans employee):

Now that we’ve taken care of business…let the FUN begin!

Now…

Let the amnesia begin!!!!!!!!!!!

Pic of the Day: Nov. 25, 2012 (Special ‘Soon-to-be-Dead Stadiums’ Edition)

Robertson Stadium (formerly Jeppesen Stadium – as well as a few other names), on the campus of the University of Houston…

for the time being anyway.

Photo taken Dec. 28, 2011 (prior to a basketball game at neighboring Hofheinz Pavilion.)