<meta name='google-adsense-platform-account' content='ca-host-pub-1556223355139109'/> <meta name='google-adsense-platform-domain' content='blogspot.com'/> <!-- data-ad-client=pub-0739814670596411 --> <!-- --><style type="text/css">@import url(//www.blogger.com/static/v1/v-css/navbar/3334278262-classic.css); div.b-mobile {display:none;} </style> </head><body><script type="text/javascript"> function setAttributeOnload(object, attribute, val) { if(window.addEventListener) { window.addEventListener('load', function(){ object[attribute] = val; }, false); } else { window.attachEvent('onload', function(){ object[attribute] = val; }); } } </script> <div id="navbar-iframe-container"></div> <script type="text/javascript" src="https://apis.google.com/js/platform.js"></script> <script type="text/javascript"> gapi.load("gapi.iframes:gapi.iframes.style.bubble", function() { if (gapi.iframes && gapi.iframes.getContext) { gapi.iframes.getContext().openChild({ url: 'https://www.blogger.com/navbar.g?targetBlogID\x3d28749891\x26blogName\x3dLiving+Out+Loud+with+Darian\x26publishMode\x3dPUBLISH_MODE_BLOGSPOT\x26navbarType\x3dLIGHT\x26layoutType\x3dCLASSIC\x26searchRoot\x3dhttps://loldarian.blogspot.com/search\x26blogLocale\x3den_US\x26v\x3d2\x26homepageUrl\x3dhttps://loldarian.blogspot.com/\x26vt\x3d5005432106872301840', where: document.getElementById("navbar-iframe-container"), id: "navbar-iframe" }); } }); </script>
4 comments | Monday, March 30, 2009

You may recall mention of an important forum co-sponsored by GLAAD, Screen Actors Guild, and The National Black Justice Coalition on this blog back in February titled "Knocking Down The Door: Black LGBT Images in Media. Video footage from this event is now available online and is definitely worth watching.

Moderated by Rashad Robinson(GLAAD) and including some of the best black gay filmmakers and actors in the business including Maurice Jamal(Dirty Laundry), Quincy LeNear and Deondray Gossett(The DL Chronicles), Marcellas Reynolds(Big Brother), and Sonja Sohn (The Wire) to name a few.

It's no secret that the images we see on television has the power to influence and change the hearts and minds of millions and this couldn't be more accurate in terms of how the world views the LGBT community. With a shortage of gay characters on prime time television or in film there's an even greater shortage of black gay characters.

Maurice Jamal articulates perfectly during the panel discussion the power of positive LGBT characters specifically for gay youth who are in the process of coming out and who often rely on media to spark a discussion with their parents about their sexuality.

Get into the video below:

In related news: Afterelton.com has a comprehensive list of television shows featuring gay characters. Paul James as Calvin on the ABC Family hit Greek and Desmond Dube as the stereotypical flamboyant hair dresser BK on HBO's The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency starring Jill Scott.

While black gay characters may be lacking on scripted TV shows we're bound to pop up in reality programming. Here's a reason to tune into MTV's latest reality show Taking The Stage. The show follows the lives of five talented student performers at Cincinnati's School for the Creative and Performing Arts. Dancer-choreographer Malik(pictured above-right) also happens to be openly gay and is shown in rehearsal during the first episode along with his boyfriend Matthew. My gaydar tells me he's not the only gay person on the show and the forced relationship between Tyler(pictured above-left) and prima ballerina Jasmine doesn't lead me to believe otherwise. Are you watching the show? What do you think so far?

Learn more about Malik below:

A virtual round of applause to Patrik -Ian Polk and the cast of Noah's Arc: Jumping The Broom. The film received a GLAAD Award for Outstanding Film-Limited Release during GLAAD's New York award ceremony on Saturday. On hand to accept the award were creator Patrik-Ian Polk and cast members Darryl Stephens and Jensen Atwood. Talk show host Tyra Banks also received an Excellence in Media Award and guests were entertained by the amazing Jennifer Holliday.

"And I Am Telling You" LOGO needs to bring Noah's Arc back for a third season! Congrats guys!


Howard University's School of Divinity welcomed some of the most progressive and inclusive black ministers across the country late last week to the first forum ever held on Howard's campus created specifically to address LGBT issues.

Rev. Tony Lee, Pastor of Community of Hope AME Church in Washington DC, served as moderator and panelists included Howard Divinity School Professor Rev. Dr. Ronald Hopson,Rev. Kenneth Samuel, Pastor of Victory for the World Church in Stone Mountain, GA,Rev. Byron Williams, a syndicated columnist and minister at Resurrection Church in Oakland, California, Rev. Osagyefo Sekou, a fellow in residence at the Brooklyn Society for Ethical Culture, and HRC’s Associate Diversity Director Donna Payne.

Rev. Kenneth Samuel, who has extended an olive branch to the black LGBT community in Georgia transitioned his former conservative Baptist congregation to a more welcoming and LGBT affirming United Church of Christ. Rev. Samuel spoke on "certain biblical passages that have become ”toxic texts” in regards to how they've been used to condemn LGBT individuals.

Rev. Samuel is searing in his condemnation of the religious homophobia that helps fuel the spread of HIV/AIDS in the black community. He says the intensifying scourge of HIV/AIDS in the community can be “traced back to notions of sinful nature.” “Why would I be concerned about my - or your health - if I’m already condemned to hell?” he asks. ” Homophobia is a health risk - especially to black church.”

"Love the sinner but hate the sin". If I had a dime for every time I've heard this self-righteous condemnation being hurled at members of the gay community by those who were lucky to "carry the burden of another cross" I'd be a rich man.

Rev. Williams finds dismissive condemnations of homosexuality as sin to be suspicious and thinks that many Christians opposed to homosexuality did not formulate their opinions after reading scriptures against homosexuality. Instead, he believes many religious homophobes first decide that they despise gays, and then find biblical passages to back up their prejudices.

Let the church say Amen!

Rev. Samuel offers this advice to churches grappling with acknowledging the presence of LGBT individuals within the church, "Open, honest, candid dialogue is the first step to dismantling wrong assumptions and prejudice taught by tradition. Keep learning; keep listening."


There's got to be something in the water in Florida that continues to produce homophobes without ceasing.

Participants in Florida's AIDS Walk held earlier this month in Fort Lauderdale were shocked by an anti-gay message printed on a t-shirt by an unidentified black man employed by Road Safe, the company contracted to erect and dismantle the barricades along the walk route.

South Florida Blade reports the employee prominently faced the crowd wearing a t-shirt saying, “Silly Faggots, Dix are for Chix”.

Suzette Engerman, Marketing Director for RoadSafe, denounced the man’s actions, and although she did not identify him, she said his actions were not supported by the company.

An e-mail sent to one of the AIDS Walk participants on March 17 by a Road Safe executive confirmed the unidentified homophobe had been terminated.

This type of insensitive and homophobic behavior is not new. Sebastian Bach, lead singer of the defunct heavy metal band Skid Row made headlines in 1989 when he appeared on MTV wearing a t-shirt that read, "AIDS Kills Fags Dead".

Participants who witnessed the highly offensive t-shirt can take comfort in knowing this type of behavior is considered unacceptable by a growing majority of people and proper disciplinary action on behalf of Road Safe ensued.

Obviously our Floridian homophobe didn't get the memo on the state of the U.S. economy before he wore his "colorful" t-shirt. Good luck on the job search brotha!

| Friday, March 27, 2009

The world lost an amazing author and activist in Shelton Jackson when he transitioned on March 2, 2009. His death was a grim reminder that HIV/AIDS is still a life threatening disease. After his passing I begun to receive numerous e-mails from people who couldn't understand why people were still dying when life-saving medications are now available and many people are living longer.

In 2009 HIV/AIDS is a black disease with black gay men and black women being hit the hardest. Our complacency and overall silence regarding this disease has resulted in devastating effects.

Over the next few weeks loldarian.com will profile the lives of 6 courageous black gay and latino men of various ages and backgrounds who are living and thriving with HIV. It is my hope that their stories will educate, inspire, and give hope to those who are living with HIV/AIDS as well as those who are negative and are working hard to remain so.

If we're not INFECTED we're AFFECTED.

For more info on HIV/AIDS or to find a testing center near you click here.

6 comments | Thursday, March 26, 2009

Well my inbox has been infiltrated with e-mails from black women since the post "Are Black Gay Men Ruining The Dating Pool For Black Women?" was published earlier this week. I guess I struck a nerve. I realized afterwards that I'd addressed this topic on video back in 2007 along with two of my good female friends Cristi and Art. And since it's impossible for me to respond to every e-mail this video will have to suffice.

This video was originally taped after Sizzle Miami in 2007 and a similar outrage from black women spilled over from MediaTakeOut.com onto this blog after seeing pictures of attractive black gay men who were obviously not interested in entering into relationships with them.

It's an honest discussion that I'm hoping you'll chime in on. Feel free to post this video far and wide. There's nothing but real talk once you press play. Get into it!

5 comments | Wednesday, March 25, 2009

The ABC News Special "What Would You Do" is once again going undercover to find out just how tolerant people really are (or not) when it comes to displays of public affection between same-sex couples. You may remember reading a post on this blog last year about a similar experiment that took place in Birmingham, Alabama where a woman dialed 911 after witnessing a gay couple kissing on a park bench. This time ABC's cameras follow a real life couple into a sports bar in New Jersey to gauge the reaction of patrons towards same-sex affection. The reactions may surprise you.

This particular topic really gets under my skin. There's an obvious double standard when it comes to PDA between heterosexual and homosexual couples. In my line of work I've seen straight couples do everything but strip down and have actual intercourse, but if a gay couple is brave enough to simply hold hands in public they're accused of public indecency or "flaunting" they're sexuality. Not to forget that straight couples don't have to live with the fear of possibly being assaulted each time they have the urge to grab their partner's hand. In the words of Marvin Gaye- "Makes me wanna holler"!

Where do you stand on this issue? Be sure to check out What Would You Do when it airs tonight at 10 p.m. EDT on ABC.


I swear some people should be banned from owning cameras and posting videos on YouTube. However, I have to admit this particular video is a guilty pleasure due to the obvious objectification of the black male body.

The two men featured in this video takes the overused phrase "No Homo" to another level. Of course they're "straight" and of course this video is strictly for the ladies. Something tells me this video is being enjoyed by more than just the ladies.

My twitter family is telling me there's a new generation of straight boys who are not afraid to be overtly sexual in each other's presence, and judging by this display of soft core man on man action they may be right.

Get into the video below and make sure to peep the look on dude's face in the jeans at the 2:02 mark. Priceless. (NSFW)

I failed to mention that I've been a contributing blogger on Project Q Atlanta since February. Project Q is the brainchild of managing editor Matt Hennie and is a distinctly queer take on the news, information, events, organizations — and the juicy dish and buzz that impacts our lives.

My latest post that seems to have sparked quite a discussion on this blog and across the blogosphere "Are Black Gay Men Ruining The Dating Pool For Black Women"? is currently featured on the front page.

There's plenty of great information that's important to our community on the site, so go ahead and check it out.


Sorry about being a couple of days late on this one. A huge congratulations to the winner of Rupaul's Drag Race Miss Bebe Zahara Benet from Cameroon! If you've been following the show like I have then I'm sure you were tuned in to the amazing finale on Monday night. If you missed it the entire show can be viewed online here.

Out Magazine had an opportunity to chat with Benet shortly before the finale aired and the new drag diva opened up about her life in Cameroon, her experience on Drag Race, the criticisms that drag impersonation is misogynistic, and why she's a "drag artist" and not a drag queen. Get into a few excerpts below:

Out: Drag is sometimes described as misogynistic -- a parody of women that does them a disservice. But you believe you’re highlighting the beauty in women.

Benet: My mom was a very influential person in my life and she had been very empowering and just seeing what she did raising us and what she did for our family, it’s a celebration of women. I will let you know -- each drag artist, you need to find out her story. You need to find out what she does and why. I’m telling you my story -- I’m trying to empower women and I am trying to represent women and show so many different ways of beauty but another character has a different reason for doing drag, so you have to ask her.

Out: It’s very individual.

Benet: Very. That’s why I don’t like it when people refer to us as drag queens. I refer to us as drag artists because we all have a different way of expressing ourselves. And it’s not necessarily looking like a woman. I decided to impersonate a woman or hold the illusion of a woman. Others do not.

Out: It seems like part of what you’re doing is really about exposure -- around the world but also in America -- especially small town America. Before RuPaul came on the scene a lot of people had never even seen a drag queen.

Benet: Drag has been stereotyped for a long time and people have -- even in the gay community -- it’s been such a stereotype: “This man is trying to be a woman” or “Why is this man dressing like a woman? If I wanted to be with a woman I wouldn’t be gay” or “Oh, they’re full of drama!” Each person is an individual and the situations you find in the drag community are the same as you find in any community. The only reason you know about the situations in the drag community is because you are searching for those situations. It’s as easy as that. The bottom line is that these are just artists -- you come to the shows, you watch the shows, you cheer, you tip the entertainers -- you do all of this and you enjoy yourself, so what makes you feel like these are not entertainers? Why do you feel they just want to be in dresses? It’s so amazing that after everything is done you see the same entertainers out of character and you still cannot separate them.

Out: RuPaul’s Drag Race has shown how much hard work you all have to do. Not only the hair, the makeup, but the performing itself.

Benet: And you cannot take it for granted. I don’t care who is the worst drag artist out there -- it’s an emotional roller coaster. You have to prepare yourself psychologically, physically -- everything -- to be out in the spotlight, to be criticized. And there are a lot of people who don’t have the guts to do it. So, I think this show is a blessing because if you do not understand what we do and you watch the show and you still do not understand, then you have a problem. [Laughs] Because I don’t think there’s any better way to express what drag is all about.

Get into Bebe Zahara Benet's crowning moment on Rupaul's Drag Race below.

24 comments | Monday, March 23, 2009

Well urban blogger Necole Bitchie and a slew of angry single black women seem to think so. In a post published last week on Necole Bitchie.com titled "Is There A Straight Man In Atlanta", Bitchie complains about the well dressed gay men in attendance at an after party hosted by Dwight Eubanks(Real Housewives of Atlanta) and the alleged shortage of heterosexual men available for black women in Atlanta.

What follows in the comment section of the post is the usual blame game; "we're single because all of the good men are either married, broke, in jail, or gay". And for the icing on the cake; plenty of speculation about the HIV/AIDS rates in Atlanta (as if it's only being transmitted through homosexual sex).

This type of gay baiting is one reason why I choose not to frequent urban blogs, when all else fails comments and traffic is almost guaranteed when you start talking about the gays to a hypocritical audience armed with a bible and a shit load of their own problems that they can't even begin to address.

Necole Bitchie has been the exception and I've always admired her for not taking the low road. She's on top of her game and I don't mind giving props when they are due. So what happened?

After I calmed down I realized the opinions expressed were not isolated but a widely held belief among many black women that I'd heard before, particularly in Atlanta. But what these women fail to realize is that they have more in common with us than they think, we're not the enemy.

Is their a large number of gay black men in Atlanta? Yes. Are we the majority? Of course not. Actually we're a minority within a minority. Yet it's become so easy for some black women to blame their "lack of'" on us. What's so ironic about the whole thing is that while it may appear that black gay men in Atlanta have more options as far as mates, there's still plenty of men who are single, lonely, and depressed. Sound familiar ladies? So the grass isn't always greener on the other side.

A bit of advice: Stop wasting your energy getting all riled up about something that could never be yours to begin with.

"If you keep a secret and somebody finds out they can hurt you with it. And if you don’t have any secrets, nobody can punish you. That’s a weapon you take out of their hands. So if I’m openly gay, nobody can use that against me. You can’t out me."

-Doug Spearman in an interview on keithboykin.com on being the only out gay actor(at the time) on Noah's Arc

| Friday, March 20, 2009

The world lost an amazing author and activist in Shelton Jackson when he transitioned on March 2, 2009. His death was a grim reminder that HIV/AIDS is still a life threatening disease. After his passing I begun to receive numerous e-mails from people who couldn't understand why people were still dying when life-saving medications are now available and many people are living longer.

In 2009 HIV/AIDS is a black disease with black gay men and black women being hit the hardest. Our complacency and overall silence regarding this disease has resulted in devastating effects.

Over the next few weeks loldarian.com will profile the lives of 6 courageous black gay and latino men of various ages and backgrounds who are living and thriving with HIV. It is my hope that their stories will educate, inspire, and give hope to those who are living with HIV/AIDS as well as those who are negative and are working hard to remain so.

If we're not INFECTED we're AFFECTED.

For more info on HIV/AIDS or to find a testing center near you click here.


Adolph St. Arromand is the Project Coordinator for The Evolution Project.The primary goal of the Evolution Project is to address the prevailing rates of HIV infection among young black gay men. The Evolution Project was started in 2006 to address the needs of young black gay men in Metro Atlanta. Adolph lives with is partner in Atlanta. This is his story.

Darian: Tell me a little bit about your background?

Adolph: I was born and raised in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. I'm a Haitian immigrant. I've been living in the United States since I was around eleven or twelve. My family came to this country like many other immigrants seeking a better life for their kids.

Darian: Do you remember what life was like in Haiti?

Adolph: Absolutely. Life was tough. It's an underdeveloped country so it doesn't have the resources that more developed countries have, but what we do have is beautiful people who love unconditionally. We're very proud people and very stubborn people too.

Darian: At what point in your life did you sense that there was something different about you?

Adolph: I think I was always aware that I was special in some way.I didn't know what that meant but I always knew there was something special about me. I can remember being seven or eight and knowing their was this special thing in me that liked the boys. I didn't realize that "specialness" was different until I began to understand homosexuality and I realized people didn't like that specialness.(Laughs)

I'd always heard whispers in my family that they were not supportive of a gay person. In my country they call it (homosexuality) "masisi" (prononunced mah-see-see). I began to believe the thing I thought was special about me wasn't any longer because it was masisi.

Darian: What role did religion play in your coming out process?

Adolph: Coming from a Haitian background they believe in spirits and spiritual things. My grandparents are highly spiritual and they really thought their was an evil spirit that had overtaken me. At one point they would say things to me like, "Haitians aren't gay", "there's no such thing as Haitian gay person", or "it's America that makes you gay."

Darian: Really?

Adolph: Yes. That was their way of saying they didn't approve and people in my family began distancing themselves from me.

Darian: How did you deal with that?

Adolph: At a young age I didn't deal with it. I wanted to change but I knew in my mind there was no way I couldn't be this person. I felt so trapped on the inside.

Darian: Let's talk about your life with HIV. How long has it been?

Adolph: Officially I'm not sure. It has to be somewhere between fifteen to eighteen years.

Darian: If you can just take me back to the events leading up to your diagnosis. When you look back now were you participating in high-risk activities?

Adolph: Well definitely now that I'm more educated on the science of HIV I can definitely say yes. Back then I was probably some kid who thought he was kinda cute and certain things would never happen to him, and I thought I was pre-selecting people properly. It just didn't happen to people like me. I kept saying to myself, God you've already given me a handful of stuff to deal with and I know you wouldn't give that to me too.

Looking back I definitely put myself at risk. Multiple partners. I think somehow I was trying to find comfort and safety in the arms of men. But I was at risk way before I even slept with anyone. I was at risk because I was in a lot of pain. I think sleeping with people is how I processed that pain.

Darian: Do you know who infected you?

Adolph: No and today it's not important. Perhaps years ago it would have been important to me, today it's not important anymore. I'm taking responsibility for myself, whoever it is I wish them the best.

Darian: What has dating and sex been like for you as an HIV Positive person?

Adolph: I've been very fortunate to have been in love three great times in my life and I don't have any regrets. And all of my long term partners have been negative.

Darian: Was their any initial fear on both sides?

Adolph: There's always fear anytime a positive person has to disclose their status. Dating a person with HIV is not for everyone, and nobody likes dealing with rejection. For those of us who are HIV Positive and a person is telling you they can't date you because of your status, they need to know that there's plenty of beautiful men out there both positive and negative who will love you just as you are.

Darian: Do you think about death?

Adolph: I don't think about death anymore, I'm too busy living to think about dying. Everybody dies. This is a very different me. A long time ago I feared death and I used to think about how I would look lying in a hospital bed all emaciated and that just took to much energy. I asked God when I was diagnosed to just give me five years and I'd be happy, and he's given me five x three years. No I don't fear death at all. I'm happy.

Living Positive: Antron Reshaud

2 comments | Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Believe it or not I don't spend a lot of time surfing videos on YouTube, most of the videos I watch are either related to a specific post on this blog or sent to me by my own personal YouTube aficionado. So when I came across a video by two heterosexual identical twin brothers who were discussing reasons why one should come out I knew I had to post it.

Keith and Kevin Hodges, better known as The Hodges Twins may be the exception to the usual homophobic black male bravado that is often displayed when the topic of homosexuality is discussed.

With their use of humor and obvious comfort in their own sexual orientation, these gorgeous twins serve up a much needed lesson on acceptance of people who are different for many of their peers who have yet to embrace their LGBT brothers and sisters, while simultaneously encouraging those who are in the closet to live authentically.

"I've got no ill will against any gay people", says Kevin. "I accept people for who they are, that's what makes us all different".

"There's nothing wrong (with being gay) that's how you're born, that's what make's you you, that's how you were built", notes Keith.

Gotta love these guys. Get into their video below.

"The revolution will not keep you in your closets of fear, shame, and self-loathing. The revolution will not keep you in your closets of hate, bigotry, and pompous to believe that your way of thinking is the only way. The revolution will not allow your closet of not-so shocking homophobia to exist in your house of immobile."

- a verse from The Revolution Will Not Be E-Mailed by independent gay artist Anthony Antoine's ninth studio album "Who's Rockin Your iPod"

Atlanta resident and openly gay independent artist Anthony Antoine returns to the music scene with his latest musical effort, "Who's Rockin Your iPod?" and manages to incorporate what he describes as "two strong energies within me; activism and freak” .

Those of you who may be familiar with Antoine's previous work may be aware of his leaning towards socially and politically charged lyrics, expect some of the same from his new release but also be prepared to be pleasantly surprised by his incessant need to dance. And there's plenty of dance music to keep the kids twirling on the dance floor all night long.

Beginning with the title track (iPOD), a banging house joint called 'I Got A Girlfriend", and a sexy remake of Janet Jackson's "IF". This project gets the loldarian.com SGL stamp of approval.

Check out a behind the scenes video of the making of Who's Rockin Your Ipod? shot on location in the ATL below. And to pick up Antoine's CD just click here.

Julian Bond supports LGBT rights and slams black homophobia at HRC dinner

The "mainstream" gay blogosphere is collectively creaming themselves after a recent speech delivered by NAACP Chairman Julian Bond at HRC's Los Angeles Gala Dinner last Saturday. You may remember reading about Bond delivering a similar speech to the 2008 National Conference on LGBT Equality: Creating Change, convened by the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force on this blog late last year. Here's an excerpt:

When someone asks me, "are gay rights civil rights?" my answer is always, "Of course, they are." Civil rights are positive legal prerogatives: the right to equal treatment before the law. These are the rights shared by everyone. There is no one in the United States who does not, or should not, enjoy or share in enjoying these rights. Gay and lesbian rights are not special rights in any way. It isn't "special" to be free from discrimination. It is an ordinary, universal entitlement of citizenship.

...People of color ought to be flattered that our movement has provided so much inspiration for others. That, it has been, that our movement has been so widely imitated. That our tactics, our methods, our heroes, our heroines, and even our songs, have been appropriated or served as models for others.

...Now, no parallel between movements is exact. African-Americans are the only Americans who were enslaved for more than two centuries and people of color carried the badge of who we are on our faces. But we are far from the only people suffering discrimination; sadly, so do many others. And those others deserve the law's protection and civil rights too.

Three Percent of Washington DC is HIV Positive

A new report shows at least 3 percent of Washington D.C. residents have either HIV or AIDS and black gay men continue to bear the brunt. The District of Columbia's HIV rate is the highest in the country and "higher than West Africa and on par with Uganda and some parts of Kenya."

Men having sex with men remains the disease's leading mode of transmission, followed by heterosexual transmission and injection drug use.


As boys, Keyon and Taleon Goffney shared little but a birthday. It was what they did together as men that did them in.Details Magazine revisits the robberies by the porn models and identical twin brothers that shocked the gay community and the state of New Jersey.

Tyson Beckford Loves The Gays

Blogger Clay Cane speaks with male supermodel Tyson Beckford about his love for the gays and his thoughts on those persistent gay rumors.

CC:Are you single?

TB:No, I’m not, but I'm like Brad Pitt and Angelina and Beyonce and Jay-Z—I just like to keep my relationship on the under. The thing I get all the time is, "Oh, he's gay, he gotta be! We never see him out with a girl." Well, I don’t want the world in my business because you got so many people like the bloggers, the paparazzi, YouTube, the camera phones—everybody is always in your business. Those who seen me with her know that she’s stunning. I just don’t want the world to know yet, it’s none of their business.

CC:Yeah, all those rumors -- I never thought you were gay.

Yeah, it's just one hater that put that on me. But, don't get me wrong, I work with GLAAD, I work with Gay Men's Health Crisis—I work with all of that. It's just I'm a straight man who got a little bit of style so they just say, "He's gay."

CC:Whenever Black men support gay people, people get crazy about that. It's a shame.

TB:Exactly! My cousin is gay and I love him to death. I have more fun hanging out with him than I do my straight friends because he's got style, he's got flavor. I can take him shoe shopping with me and my girl, we know we're getting the best advice. To me, it's like the best of both worlds. As soon as people see me, "Oh, he's gay." I'm like, well, I don't have that much flavor. I got flavor but I don’t have that much. I love my gay brothers and sisters.

Florida ballot initiative would ban sexual orientation, gender identity anti-discrimination protections

Charter Amendment 1 would ban the city of Gainesville from adopting or enforcing anti-discrimination policies not outlined by the Florida Civil Rights Act. The Florida Civil Rights Act does not include sexual orientation or gender identity. The city of Gainesville currently provides protections under it's city ordinances for sexual orientation and gender identity, but if Charter Amendment 1 passes, these protections would be voided and the city would be prohibited from forbidding discrimination against gays, lesbians, and transsexuals.

The vote is right around the corner on March 24.

Bloggers B. Scott & Adam Irby at Yale University:Overcoming Homophobia

Appearing on the panel of Yale University's Black Solidarity Conference bloggers B. Scott and Adam Irby represented the black gay voices in a discussion ranging from misogyny and the sexual exploitation of black women to the clash of orthodox religious beliefs with homosexuality.

"Adam broke the momentary silence of the room by stating that the black community is “not as comfortable as [it] should be,” and in order for genuine progress to continue, “integration is key.” The “integration” Adam refers to is the successful coexistence of blacks of varying sexual orientations and gender classifications. He also commented on the desire of members in the black gay community to push legislation regarding same-sex marriage. Adam asserted that no results would arise without other blacks’ “acknowledgement of black homosexuals as ‘regular’ people. We can worry about legislation after we gain support from our own communities.”

With a piercing, concerned glare, B. Scott nodded his head and cracked a slight smile before deeming it “ironic [that] homophobia exists within the [black] Church.” He further stated that a “large portion of the choir members, deacons, and sometimes the preachers” engage in homosexual activity or openly identify themselves as gay. The irony comes into play when, according to B. Scott, ministers then stand before their congregations and “focus on the condemnation of men,” rather than “focus[ing] on teaching others to become more Christ-like, who teaches all to love, accept, and uplift fellow men.”

The message is clear. According to B. Scott, these “Men of God” are essentially “responsible” for many things, including “the increase in HIV/AIDS cases and teen pregnancies” in the black community because they refuse to “talk about these things in church.” This in turn creates “a mentality that people should be ashamed of themselves,” leading to a decrease in the use of protection during sexual encounters. B. Scott further said that when people fail to practice safe-sex methods, they develop a sense of “worthlessness” and a “loss of respect for themselves and for the people they’re involved with.”

14 comments | Tuesday, March 17, 2009

"You were black first before you even knew you were gay"!

"You need to choose which one is more important to you".

"Black folks aren't gay...that's white folks shit"!

"I just don't understand why you would want to be gay with all the pu**y out there"!

"God ain't pleased"!

"You need to go somewhere and pick up a ball."

"You can't change being black but you can change being gay".

"Just don't bring that sh** around me and we're cool".

At some point in my life I've heard every single one of the above quotes and many more that I've blocked out. What do you do when you're a minority within a minority? How do you survive when in order to be fully accepted in the black community you have to be willing to deny apart of yourself (or at least never confirm what everyone is saying behind your back anyway) and to be accepted in the larger gay community you're expected to check your blackness at the door?

Do you have to choose which identity/community takes precedence? Or do you just say to hell with both?

I'll give you a second to take in the headline of this post. May we proceed? Good. It's a known fact in many artistic circles in New York that some of the best theater isn't always found on Broadway, but far from the great white way in smaller theaters and experimental houses that are not controlled by the Walt Disney machine. Whore Works happens to be one of those shows.

Loldarian.com was fortunate to be invited to the opening night performance of this off-off broadway play exploring the lives of a young black male escort, played by the beautiful Juan Michael Porter, who also penned the script, and his "client" played by the brilliant Bryan Webster.

Isn't money love? This is the question at the core of the conflict between a paid professional who is determined not to confuse his profession with matters of the heart.

It's not very often a show is produced that features an all black cast let alone a show that deals explicitly with (homo)sexuality. These two fine actors are so committed to the work that they become totally immersed in their characters and allow themselves to be completely exposed in front of an audience of strangers. And I mean that literally. It might not be a good idea to attend this show with your mother.

There's something powerful about the presence of black gay love on stage or in the case of Whore Works-lust. And I couldn't help but revel in the fact that for once there was a relationship presented in the theater that reflected the lives of two black gay men in all of it's complexities.

If you're in New York then I highly recommend that you check out Whore Works . The show will resume performances on March 20, 21, and 22. Theater info is listed below.

Many thanks to Angelo Ragaza and Bryan Webster.

Whore Works
Spoon Theater
38 West 38th Street btw 5th&6th Avenues
Tickets: $18.00


New York's HX Magazine has chosen loldarian.com as the site of the week. Here's what the popular New York City gay mag had to say about little ol' me:

"The site is described as discussing “a range of issues from the African-American gay male perspective”, and his win for Best LGBT Blog from the 2008 Black Weblog Awards shows that he’s damn good at such discussions! There’s the standard homo-blog eye candy every now and then, but features such as the new “Living Positive” series (in which Darian interviews black gay men living with HIV to raise awareness) add a depth that is rare in the gay blogosphere."

I must say this was a pleasant surprise. Many thanks to Joseph Sanchez at HX Magazine.

Check it out here.

| Monday, March 16, 2009

Taking an extended weekend with Trey in D.C. . Regular updates will resume on Tuesday morning. In the meantime you can follow our little vacation via Twitter here. Back to business as usual in 24 hours.

| Friday, March 13, 2009

Last week the world lost an amazing author and activist in Shelton Jackson. His death was a grim reminder that HIV/AIDS is still a life threatening disease. After his passing I begun to receive numerous e-mails from people who couldn't understand why people were still dying when life-saving medications are now available and many people are living longer.

In 2009 HIV/AIDS is a black disease with black gay men and black women being hit the hardest. Our complacency and overall silence regarding this disease has resulted in devastating effects.

Over the next few weeks loldarian.com will profile the lives of 6 courageous black gay men of various ages and backgrounds who are living and thriving with HIV. It is my hope that their stories will educate, inspire, and give hope to those who are living with HIV/AIDS as well as those who are negative and are working hard to remain so.

If we're not INFECTED we're AFFECTED.

For more info on HIV/AIDS or to find a testing center near you click here.

12 comments | Thursday, March 12, 2009

Note from Darian: This post was originally published in September of 2008. Since then this video has been one of the most watched and discussed videos on my YouTube channel as well as on the blog. Last night I had the pleasure of participating in a discussion about sexual roles among gay men at The Deeper Love Project here in Atlanta and I thought it would be nice to revisit this conversation. Do we tend to devalue effeminate brothers or those we perceive to be "bottoms" in our community while placing more masculine brothers or those we perceive to be "tops" on a pedastal? I know how I would answer that question.

"You don't have to twist and turn and do all of this and that. Be who you are-that's your business. But when you put your business out there don't get upset when they holler at you, hey punk, hey fag"!-Bobby Blake

This post is for all of my fem brothers who have written and asked me to speak about the harassment and ridicule they face for being who they are.

As I sat and listened to adult film star Bobby Blake over Pride weekend discuss one of the aspects of gay culture that he absolutely deplored as he promoted his new book 'My Life In Porn', I couldn't help but look at him sideways and roll my eyes and I'll tell you why.

It's not easy being black and gay in America, but the load does seem a little lighter when you're hovering over six feet with a presence that would intimidate the average person. Unlike many effeminate black gay men who are easily 'clockable,' if one was not aware of Blake's past involvement in the gay porn industry they would probably assume he were straight. After all he has become famous for his sexual prowess and his ability to dominate the very men he looks down upon.

But the problem I have with his views on effeminate gay men reaches beyond Bobby Blake the "actor" and into the broader community where I believe we all suffer from the same twisted self-hate.

Our community is comprised of all different shades of gay and somewhere along the way the social constructs of masculinity along with the influence of hip-hop in gay culture has ostracized the 'fem queen'.

You remember him don't you? The one who couldn't hide his sexuality behind a do-rag, wife beater, and a pair of Timbs. The one who bore the brunt of anti-gay harassment because there was just a little too much sugar in his kool-aid. The one that realized that "straight acting" was just that-acting and at the end of the day he was still gay.

Let's face it there are some brothers who couldn't butch it up if they tried. So why have these men become an embarrassment to our community? Sure, I believe there is a time and a place for everything, but there is never in my book a time to conform to heterosexual ideals as a gay man when you risk losing your authenticity.

Our differences should be celebrated and not denigrated, especially not by those within our own community.


A virtual round of applause to Outsports for introducing us to this incredibly hot NFL hopeful and a little known league process that requires prospective players to strip down and pose for the camera.

Penn State senior Aaron Maybin is one of many star college football players hoping to be selected in next month's draft.

"Eying the prospective NFL flesh has long been a ritual among scouts and general managers, but it’s only in the era of the Internet and coverage of the draft combine that this beef has been available to the rest of us", notes Outsports.

For those of you who are not into sports and have no idea what a draft combine is(yes I had to look it up) according to Wikipedia it's where college football players perform physical and mental tests in front of National Football League coaches, general managers and scouts.

Yeah, that's great. But did you notice how hot he is?

2 comments | Wednesday, March 11, 2009

From the creators of The DL Chronicles comes a new webseries titled The Outside of Relationships. Quincy LeNear and Deondray Gossett are not only artistic partners but have been partners in life for over 11 years. Watch as they bring humor and life lessons learned over their decade together to SGL couples who desire long term commitment.

The Outside of Relationships Season 1 Episode 2

Openly gay cast member on BET's College Hill South Beach

There's a new roommate representing the black gay community on the new season of BET's College Hill South Beach and his name is Kyle Washington. Washington is a junior at Florida A&M University and will be the second openly gay black man on College Hill when the show premieres on March 24th. Get into it!

Wilson Cruz talks about the controversy over his and other gay portrayals in “He’s Just Not That Into You”

"Some people had something to say about the fact that I may have been too effeminate or other people in the film may have been too effeminate but I celebrate that fact that we can do that in 2009. I want to see more effeminate men on television and in film. I think there is a lack of that. The more we see effeminate men on screen, the more we can help those young people who are exactly that feel okay about it. And that’s really the whole point of my career.”

Is Homophobia More Prevalent than Racism?"

Do people harbor more negative feelings toward LGBT people than they do toward people of specific races or ethnicities? According to the British Psychological Society’s Division of Occupational Psychology, the answer is yes. But is this a destructive question to ask? I think the answer is yes. Here are the findings of the study.

35 percent of those surveyed revealed negative attitudes toward gay men;

41 percent held prejudicial attitudes toward lesbians;

28 percent held negative attitudes toward Asians;

25 percent held negative attitudes toward Black populations;

18 percent held negative attitudes toward Southeast Asians

Offensive Message on Faux Blood Drive Flyers Directed Towards Gay Men

Straight Boys & Their Back Door: Not Just An Exit?

I was out with a couple of co-workers and after knocking back a few shots, naturally the conversation turned to sex. One of the four dudes present asked if I was down with The 3 Piece Meal. The other ladies and I looked at each other like, “what?” and told him to explain. Basically, he said The 3 Piece Meal is when a lady gives you head, sucks your sac and licks your @ss. Now we were all like, “Hell naw. Men don’t even wash like they’re supposed to.” But when one of the chicks was quiet, we looked at her and she said she’s done it to an ex-boyfriend before. A few of the guys present were all for this. They said they loved for a girl to lick their back door. One dude said a girl tried that on him and it just made him really nervous and ashamed. He went soft and all he could do was stare at the wall. Now us women, sure we like it. But we also have a different code of cleanliness too. Continue reading...

American Idol Needs To Open Closet Door

The closet metaphor most often applies to hidden homosexual identities, and that's certainly a hot button issue for "Idol." The show has drawn its own curtain around apparently gay contestants over the years. So far, Adam Lambert has been as matter-of-fact about his orientation as possible without actually uttering the word "gay" on camera. He's poised, doing his little dance around a major aspect of his private life; he's not the first to have to do so.

Harlem Heights, Baldwin Hills, College Hill ATL -- no gays?

The argument normally is BET is copying MTV's reality shows, which probably isn't too farfetched. MTV has had gay personalities for years -- they originated it with Norman Korpi from the first season of Real World and of course Pedro Zamora from Real World in San Francisco who was HIV positive (imagine if BET did something like that). They've even had two transgender personalities in the last year, which were surprisingly not exploitative. Other reality shows, America's Next Top Model, Project Runway and others are packed with the gays.

Ray Cunningham was the first and only openly gay personality on BET for season three of College Hill.

Is it possible BET couldn't find any openly gay black people on the show?

Chaseology Interviews Openly Gay Rapper Last Offence

On Coming Out:
I came out to my mother when I was 18. I had a fight with my brother about me being gay. I went to my mom, woke her up *laughs*. I told her my brother said he would basically disown me if I was gay and I was like well I’m gay. She was really cool and I stopped being angry. *laughs* Once I told her, I didn’t tell anybody for a while. Then once I moved out the L.A. I told all my friends and then all my cousins first. Then I got tired of saying the words so I just let word spread. *laughs*

My one regret is that I’ve never said the words to my father. I’m not afraid to tell nobody, you know what I mean if he asked me then it would come out easy as pie. I’d be like yeah. But to bring it up and try to talk to him when we already have strained communication as it is not easy. And I must say since I’m older I don’t have as much of a need for people to know. You know, when you’re younger it’s like “I need to come out, everybody needs to know so I can feel better and ladidadida...” But when you get older and you pay your own bills and you got your own life you don’t really give a shit. I don’t hide anything but telling people isn’t an emergency.

Check out Last Offence on Myspace here.

“It is unfortunate that a segment of our society fails to see that we all should be treated like human beings, that we all are citizens of the United States of America. I’ve taken the position and I’ve long held this position that I fought too long and too hard against discrimination base on race and color not to stand up and speak out against discrimination based on sexual orientation. It doesn’t matter if someone is gay or straight or whether someone believes in a different philosophy or different religion. We’re one people, we’re one family, and we’re one house. There is not any room in American society for discrimination based on sexual orientation. It doesn’t matter whether someone is gay or happens to be lesbian or transsexual. We’re one people; we’re one family, the American family.

You call it what you want, discrimination is discrimination and we have to speak up and speak out against discrimination. You have too many people in this society saying they’re against same-sex marriage. If people fall in love and want to get married, it is their business. Martin Luther King Jr. use to say races don’t fall in love in love and get married; individuals fall in love and get married. So if two men or two women want to fall in love and get married it’s their business. Some people say it is a threat to the institution of marriage, and some of these people who go around saying that same sex marriage is a threat to the institution of marriage, which marriage or what marriage are they talking about? Some of these same individuals have had several marriages and I don’t think individuals that happen to be gay are a threat to anybody’s marriage. Love is love. It is better to love than to hate, it is better to be together than to be divided.”

-Congressman and LGBT ally John Lewis during an interview with James Hipps of Gay Agenda

| Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Many of you have e-mailed me over the past few days to notify me about the problems you've had signing up for my newsletter. I'm not sure what's causing the problem, but in the meantime I'd like to invite you to follow me on Twitter and join me on Facebook. I swore off of both social networking sites for months but I'm finding their great tools to spread the word about the blog and to connect with great people.

So if you're a regular reader please take advantage of two great ways to stay on top of all things black and gay on lodarian.com.

12 comments | Monday, March 09, 2009

Journalist Karen Ocamb has penned a thought provoking piece on Tavis Smiley's annual State Of The Black Union. During the tenth anniversary of Smiley's much lauded and well attended think-tank the presence of openly gay black leaders and issues affecting the black LGBT community were once again the elephant in the room.

"It's hard to believe, given the explosion of HIV/AIDS in the black community, that the 10th annual State of the Black Union (SOTBU) symposium, held last Saturday and broadcast on C-SPAN from Los Angeles, had not a single guest on to discuss that topic -- or the controversy over Proposition 8 and homophobia the black vote, both real and perceived", notes blogger Pam Spaulding.

As expected much of the conversation centered around economics, but their is no logical explanation for the omission of the devastating effects of HIV/AIDS in the black community during the dialogue. Our silence over the past 25 years has not been the solution to curbing the epidemic and has only fueled new infections.

Ocamb also observes that their has been no representation at SOTBU by openly gay leaders since Phil Wilson,(The Black AIDS Institute) and Keith Boykin(The Daily Voice) were invited in 2005.

Black Americans represented 45 percent of people newly infected with HIV in 2006, despite being just 13 percent of the population. Men who have sex with men accounted for 53 percent of all new infections in 2006, and young Black men were particularly hard hit. And AIDS is still the leading cause of death for Black women aged 24-34; 65% of new HIV/AIDS diagnoses among women in the U.S. are Black; and Black women are 23 times more likely to be diagnosed with AIDS than white women.

So why was this not on Tavis Smiley's agenda? And why does it seem that the black community is determined not to address the issues of sexuality, HIV/AIDS, and equal rights for LGBT individuals despite the intense political climate we're in and the deadly consequences resulting from our silence?

Ponder on this comment from Bilerico Project reader AJ Loop:

While his career virtually requires that he interact with LGBT people in the entertainment world of Los Angeles, Tavis comes from a very conservative Pentecostal childhood, and although he is not homophobic himself (well, more about that in a bit), he probably has influencial family members who are.

Most notably, his Mom, who he is still very close to. (Tavis was her first-born at a young age, and fits a pattern I've seen with other black men in that situation, that their mother is so close to him age-wise that she becomes both a mother and an older sister.) Karen, you mention the inclusion of Phill Wilson and Keith Boykin in SOTBU-2005, but you don't mention a part of the fall-out: In Tavis's autobiography What I Know For Sure, he writes about his mom (pages 252-3):

When she believes something, you cannot sway her or change her mind. And she will not compromise, whatever the setting. ... This particular year [at SOTBU], we focused on health in the black community. A number of prominent figures, gay and straight, spoke on the topic of sexuality and health. At the end of the conference, as usual I asked Mama, in her role as an evengelist, to give the closing prayer.

"Father God," she prayed before the church and the world-wide television audience, "we thank you for this opportunity to gather together and give you glory. We thank you, Father, for bringing in these leaders who have enlightened our minds with their thinking and their learning, But we also remember, Father, that you created Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve, and so we pray that the practice of homosexuality be understood as the sin that it is. We pray that all your people turn away from sin and live a life pleasing to you. In Jesus' name, amen."

You could hear a pin drop. Without thinking twice, Mama took all the political correctness and tolerance that had been espoused and turned it on its ear.

1 comments | Friday, March 06, 2009

This is truly spectacular. Black gay filmmaker, photographer, and fashion editor Kirk Shannon-Butts is giving new meaning to the phrase "black is beautiful" in the latest edition of New York magazine HX.

Shannon-Butts along with photographer Aron Norman have created Deep and Dark for the weekly nightlife magazine brought to life by gorgeous models Art and Makin from Red Model Management.

Shannon-Butts chose to style the men in faded denim by Replay, tanks by Calvin Klein, and my favorite leather bustier by Purple Passion/DVDV8.

In addition to films and freelance work for HX and other publications, Shannon-Butts is also the Men's Editor for Glamour Magazine. This is one brother who has a hard time staying still. What a wonderful example of someone in our community doing it big and doing it well.