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Twentysomething Hairless White Gay Men Who Have Time To Take Pilates 5 Days A Week



Editor’s note:

J. Rudy Flesher is a Philadelphia based actor, blogger and college student. After a three-year detour working in health care he recently returned to The College of New Jersey to complete his B.A. in Women’s and Gender studies. He blogs (sporadically at the moment and daily when school is not in session) at The Pistol in Bed Thirteen.

A while back I invited Rudy to join The New Civil Rights Movement because I was quite impressed with his thoughts, his ideas, his background, his grasp of the issues affecting our community, and his work. Later, via Twitter, I wrote something like, “I am happy today knowing our community’s future is being created by people like Rudy.” I think you will be too. This is Rudy’s first post here.

I have been following the debate surrounding David’s decision to discontinue writing for Bilerico with interest as it has sparked debate here, and around the queer blogosphere. David’s argument hit home for me as I have chosen to stop following blogs precisely because they mixed scantily-clad gym bunnies in with their editorial and news reporting content, though perhaps for different reasons. I believe the images portrayed lack diversity, and therefore under-represent, misrepresent, alienate, and ghettoize many LGBTQ communities and their members.

First, why I stand with David on his decision to step down from Bilerico: My issue with the way they handle this content is that they style themselves as a queer think tank and the goal on their “about us” page is to “foster…conversations in order to strengthen us as individuals and as a community.” To my mind, that means the naked Mormon boys are simply, in corporate parlance, “off mission.” Porn is awesome, but if Judith Butler or Kate Bornstein popped up in the middle of a sex scene to offer a post-modern analysis of gender identity, it too would be “off mission,” and I’d be annoyed. It’s just out of place.

Now, on to my larger issues with this content. Queerty was the blog I chose to unsubscribe from. I consider myself a sex-positive feminist and do believe that our society has a long way to go in terms of maturely integrating sexuality into daily life in a way that is celebratory, healthy, and free of shame and stigma. However, the images portrayed on Queerty and, as far as I’ve observed, other mainstream LGBTQ blogs, including Bilerico, do not achieve this whatsoever.

Instead, these pictures say that, no matter how many letters we add to the LGBTQ alphabet soup, no matter how inclusive the other content becomes, that clearly, it is white, gay, men with single-digit body fat who matter. As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words.

Sure, the blogs are writing about lesbian issues, but there never seem to be any photos of hot dykes to oggle. The bodies of trans people certainly aren’t represented. Without a doubt, people of color, the hirsute, the disabled, those older than twenty-seven, and so on clearly need not apply. Men destabilizing gender roles — wearing makeup, “women’s” clothes, nail polish — well, we’ll watch them in drag shows, but Goddess forbid we celebrate their sexuality because then we would be radically dismantling a false gender binary which oppresses all of us. Gosh, who would want that?

Instead, these pictures constantly reinforce that only certain people matter, that they’re all men, and only certain kinds of men. If that’s your type, then by all means, oggle away! But put it on a blog called “Twenty-Something Hairless White Gay Men Who Have the Time to Take Pilates Five Days a Week.” Don’t run a blog that purports to represent a dynamic population and then only represent a historically-privileged demographic.

David is spot on when he notes that blogs offering this type of material as content use it as an easy way to get traffic, but I’d go a step further and say that the incredibly narrow spectrum of men represented in this material speaks to a whole lot of patriarchy and ugly “isms” that pervade our communities today. How quickly we forget history and fail to learn from it.

There was a feminist backlash against the “Lavender Menace” of lesbians, and then against transsexual women who were (and are) portrayed as invading women’s space. All variety of people who were gender rebels were at the forefront of queer liberation, and quickly thrown under the bus for those seen as less threatening to mainstream (read: white patriarchal) society. To turn this tide requires intense, critical introspection, both collectively and communally.

While both mainstream media and queer blogs seem content with appealing to the lowest common denominator (and ignoring the needs and desires of much of their audience), we must be willing to take a principled stand to buck this anti-intellectual trend and have intelligent discourse on the damage done to our communities when so many are excluded. As Judith Butler notes in the preface to the 1999 republication of her landmark “Gender Trouble,”

“…we underestimate the reading public, its capacity and desire for reading complicated and challenging texts, when the complication is not gratuitous, when the challenge is in the service of calling taken-for granted truths into question, when the taken for grantedness of those truths is, indeed, oppressive.”

I could not agree with her more. It is a time to be critical, compassionate, celebratory, and radical. It is time to love and value ourselves and each other.

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‘Indictment Anytime’: Experts Explain Significance of Trump’s Attorneys Meeting With DOJ – Warn Plea Deal Possible



Legal experts responding to news Donald Trump‘s legal team Monday morning walked into the U.S. Dept. of Justice agree it likely means Special Counsel Jack Smith is nearing a charging decision, but warn it could also mean the ex-president, under criminal investigation for unlawful handling of classified documents, among other possibly unlawful acts, might be offered a plea deal to avoid serving time in prison.

Trump’s attorneys being at DOJ “suggests indictment anytime. This would be the last step, and if neither side offers something worth thinking about, then DOJ would pull the trigger,” says former Dept. of Justice official Harry Litman.

“Plenty of possible angles they might choose to play including guilty plea for noncustodial sentence,” he adds, referring to any possible plea bargain with no sentence behind bars. “But unless Trump side leaks, discussions will stay confidential.”

READ MORE: ‘No Longer the Lord’s Chicken’: ‘Christian Woman’ Says She’s ‘Grieving’ Over ‘Woke’ Chick-fil-A Hiring a Diversity Officer

CBS News’ Robert Costa and Rob Legare broke the news that Trump’s attorneys had gone into DOJ. Responding to that, former U.S. Attorney Joyce Vance offers up a few possible scenarios.

“The smart move here for Trump is a guilty plea to a misdemeanor if DOJ will offer one & a felony with no jail time if they won’t,” she says, pointing to her Substack newsletter where she discussed this very subject Sunday night.

“For those who dislike these possible outcomes (I would number myself in that group), it’s nonetheless important to understand the prior precedent that will shape DOJ’s charging decisions & any plea offers in this matter. This is Trump’s best possible outcome, not the country’s,” says Vance.

READ MORE: Classified Pentagon ‘War Plans’ Document Trump Bragged About in Audio Recording Is Missing: Report

She adds, “Trump seems incapable of saying he’s done anything wrong. To plead, he’d have to say under oath in open court that he was guilty. It’ll be interesting to see if he can do that, or would rather run the risk of being convicted of felonies that carry up to 20 years in custody.”

“Good sign,” says former federal prosecutor of 30 years, Glenn Kirschner, observing, “if Jack Smith had decided against charging Trump, there would be no need for this meeting. The last federal prosecutors often do before indicting is meet with the target’s defense team & give them an opportunity to present any evidence or arguments they want to offer.”

Dave Aronberg, Palm Beach County, Florida state’s attorney on MSNBC Monday morning said he believes Trump will be indicted this week.

Image by Gage Skidmore via Flickr and a CC license

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Trump’s Attorneys Just Walked Into DOJ – Special Counsel Expected to Reach Charging Decision Soon: Report



Attorneys for Donald Trump Monday morning entered the U.S. Dept. of Justice, as expectations grow the ex-president could soon be charged in his unlawful removal, retention, and refusal to return hundreds of classified and top secret documents.

CBS News chief election and campaign correspondent Robert Costa reports sources say Special Counsel Jack Smith is expected to reach a decision on charging Trump in the case soon.

“Trump’s lawyers just spotted by @CBSNews entering the Justice Department, per @RobLegare who is on site,” Costa tweeted at 10:09 AM ET. He says that “comes as sources tell me the special counsel is moving toward a charging decision in the classified documents case.”

Citing sources, Costa adds, “Trump’s lawyers are expected to raise concerns about how prosecutors have handled atty-client questions during the grand jury but there is no sign the special counsel is going to waver from how he and his team have handled the crime-fraud exception…”

READ MORE: Former DOJ Official Says Audio of Trump Admitting to Keeping ‘War Plans’ Makes it ‘Inconceivable’ He Will Not Be Charged

Trump’s attorneys being at DOJ is a possible sign the Special Counsel could be close to asking a grand jury to bring charges against the one-term, twice impeached ex-president who is currently facing 34 felonies in an unrelated New York case.

“Often defense attorneys are given the opportunity to ‘pitch’ the DOJ before a charging decision is made,” former federal prosecutor Renato Mariotti notes. “Trump’s team visiting DOJ likely means that we won’t see charges in the next few days—as their pitch is considered—but could potentially see charges in the next 5 to 15 days.”

The Special Counsel’s grand jury is reportedly reconvening this week.

Legal experts and Trump watchers have been expecting the ex-president to be charged as soon as this week, after CNN reported Special Counsel Jack Smith had an audio recording of Trump admitting to holding on to a classified document, described by some as “war plans” against Iran. In that audio Trump reportedly also said he knew the document was classified, and said he wished he could share it, which destroys multiple claims he has made in his defense of retaining the documents.

That document is still missing, and the Pentagon appears greatly concerned about the document.

On Sunday night Trump lashed out at Smith, calling him, the DOJ, and the FBI all “Marxist,” and described the investigation into his possibly illegal handling of classified documents as the “boxes hoax.”


This is a breaking news and developing story. Details may change. 

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Right-Wingers’ Latest Chick-fil-A Meltdown Proves They Have ‘Officially Jumped the Shark’: Morning Joe Panel



MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough and Donny Deutsch mocked conservatives for running the “woke” hysteria into the ground.

Ron DeSantis and other Republicans have screeched about the so-called “woke agenda,” which they warn will undermine American values and put children at risk from all manner of threats, but the “Morning Joe” host said most voters simply don’t care about that manufactured issue.

“Joe Biden, 350 pieces of bipartisan legislation signed, and Ron DeSantis and everybody else is talking ‘woke, woke, woke, woke, woke,'” Scarborough said. “Again, something that I said on this show and I heard a lot about from liberals, even, in 2021. You’re not hearing it, again, in part because there have been some corrections. You have the head of Berkley Law School, Yale Law School, Stanford Law School going, ‘Hold on, hold on, we’re not going to let these woke mobs get in the way of free speech.’ They’re saying it at the most elite law schools in America, so common-sense Americans are going, ‘Okay, there may still be a problem, but they’re working on it,’ and yet these Republicans are all acting like it’s 2019, 2020 and they just keep freaking out. Well, Joe Biden is talking about job training and signing bipartisan bills.”

Conservatives have turned against Chick-fil-A for hiring a vice president of diversity, equity and inclusion — which actually happened over a year ago but largely escaped notice until recently — and Deutsche said that was a nadir for “woke” hysteria.

READ MORE: ‘Cowards’: Soledad O’Brien rips former CNN colleagues for silence as Chris Licht wrecks the network

“The ‘woke’ movement officially jumped the shark,” he said. “Joe, you touched on this earlier with the Chick-fil-A move. Right-wing company, I don’t say that negatively, very family values, closed on Sundays, the head of the — [company chairman] Dan Cathy came out against same-sex marriages. They’re very conservative. Now, all of a sudden — you’re right, very conservative, obviously a great company, and they came under fire they have a DEI initiative, diversity, coming under fire from right-wing groups. That’s the official moment that ‘woke’ officially jumped the shark and put Fonzie on skis in Honolulu.”

Watch the video below or at this link.

Image by Hector Alejandro via Flickr and a CC license

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