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6 comments | Thursday, March 24, 2011

New York City based poet and performance artist Yolo Akili returns with his latest video for "Are We The Kind of Boys We Want?" taken from his studio album Purple Galaxy.

“Are We The Kind of Boys We Want?” is a montage of provocative interviews and commentary from numerous black gay men on gender and desire intermixed with a cadre of well known Atlanta activists performing the title poem. The poem reflects the sexism of gay men, the gendered stereotypes or sexual roles and the challenges of romantic relationships.

"I wrote this poem in college after realizing that me and my friends, who would definitely be considered “feminine”, not only never liked boys like us, but often seemed disgusted at them," Akili tells loldarian.com. "I began to wonder what it meant when a reflection of you walks by and you are repulsed. The poem is about just that, pondering what that kind of behavior means for our own self esteem and self image in the context of gender and sexuality."

Akili is an loldarian.com favorite and his work has been featured on this site in the past. You may recall seeing the sensual video for the poem "Concretely" a few months ago co-starring dancer Juel Lane. Akili was kind enough to invite me to participate in "Are We The Kind Of Boys We Want?" and it was a wonderful experience. Atlanta activists Michael Brewer, Anthony Antoine, Khalid, Anye Elite, Chase Andrews, Jarrett Hill, Tobias Spears and a host of others are included in this video.

Check out "Are We The Kind of Boys We Want?" below:

| Friday, March 18, 2011

Coming out as gay or lesbian can be one of the most difficult and life changing experiences for an individual as well as their family. Unsuspecting parents are usually caught off guard and can have a range of emotions from guilt, anger, to blaming themselves, and worst of all violence.

Lead with Love, a new documentary by Jenny Mackenzie and David M. Huebner aims to provide comfort, information, and guidance for parents who have recently learned that their son or daughter is lesbian, gay, or bisexual. The film follows four families as they share their honest reactions to hearing that their child is gay, including the intense emotions, fears, and questions that it raised. Interviews with psychologists, teachers, and clergy provide factual answers to parents' most commonly asked questions, as well as concrete guidance to help parents keep their children healthy and safe during this challenging time.

The filmmaker's have provided quick guide pdf's on their website for parents who have recently discovered that their child is gay or lesbian. I know my parents could have benefited form this if it were around when I came out.

Check out the trailer for Lead with Love below. You can order the DVD by visiting their official website.

5 comments | Tuesday, March 15, 2011

It's the sound bite that very few people noticed as an agitated Tyler Perry spoke with reporters on the red carpet of the 2011 NAACP Image Awards. Our friends at No More Down Low TV caught up with the media mogul to gauge his reaction to black America's fascination with black men in drag on screen and the subsequent criticism aimed at his gun-toting character Mabel 'Madea' Simmons.

"Why are black people complaining about what other comedians are doing?", said Perry. "It's a comedic moment...people need to just chill...let that shit go!", he added.

A very different tone than we're used to hearing from the devoutly religious 40-something bachelor who was accompanied by a "guest" to the awards ceremony.

Tyler Perry's latest film Madea's Big Happy Family hits theaters on April 22 and judging from the trailer it's more of the same recycled mess we're used to seeing from Perry. But we should all run out and see it because he's the only person hiring black actors, right? I agree with No More Down Low TV host Janora McDuffie when she says despite the criticism Perry will be laughing all the way to the bank. And let me add at the expense of black and gay people.

Watch the clip below:

1 comments | Monday, March 14, 2011

I knew it wouldn't be long before this troll of a "minister" took to the airwaves to boast about the recent defeat of marriage equality in Maryland. Anti-gay Bishop Harry Jackson recently appeared on the Christian Broadcasting Network to take all of the credit along with the black church for "stopping gay marriage in its tracks" in his home state of Maryland.

The proposed marriage equality bill that passed by a slim majority in Maryland's Senate but failed to garner enough votes necessary for passage in the House was sent back to committee last week after supporters of the bill realized it wouldn't pass if brought to a floor vote.

Jackson is affiliated with the anti-gay National Organization for Marriage and was on the losing end of a bitter fight to prevent marriage equality in the District of Columbia.

I simply cannot wait for someone to out this despicable man.

Blogger Alvin McEwen writes about the black church's incessant need to impede the civil rights of the LGBT community on his blog Holy Bullies and Headless Monsters.

"Being oppressed is not a status symbol. Being oppressed is not a mark of achievement. It should never be used as a pedestal to somehow judge whether or not a group of people are “worthy” of being treated like basic human beings.

Not that it will make a difference in the minds of the people who choose to play this game, but some of those same lgbt scars belong to African Americans. Some of that lgbt pain and humiliation comes from African-American hearts. And some of that lgbt blood shed at the hands of homophobic monsters come from African-American bodies.

And that is the saddest thing about the entire mess. When some African-American leaders rag against lgbt equality, they fool themselves into thinking that they are speaking against hedonistic upper class white gay men sipping fancy cocktails in a ritzy bars.

But that notion is so far from the truth.

African-American leaders who speak against lgbt equality are stabbing their own people in the back - the young black lesbian kicked out of her home for “acting like a man,” the effeminate black gay boy constantly picked on by bullies, the older African-Americans lgbts left adrift and rendered invisible by their own black community, and all of the other assorted black lgbt brothers, sisters, cousins, nephews, nieces, and close friends not given the courtesy of simple public acknowledgement.

And while these self-righteous black leaders may claim that they don’t mean treat their own people in this manner, their pathetic mea culpa don’t mean a drop of water in the bucket to those like myself who have to deal with such things on a constant basis.

Through their barrage of hurtful comments, these black leaders foster a rejection of African-American lgbts like myself, thereby telling us that we are not a genuine part of the black community.

And that hurts."

Watch Bishop Harry Jackson gloat over what will be a short-lived victory in Maryland in the clip below.

h/t Joe.My.God


Did you know although there's millions of same-sex couples living in the United States there is very little research about this demographic? The You and Me Study funded by the National Institute of Mental Health along with researchers from San Francisco and New York are working to change this.

The mission of the You & Me Study is to gain a better understanding of relationship dynamics and the contextual factors that shape them in order to develop interventions to improve the sexual health of men in same-sex relationships. Little health research has focused on same-sex couples, and even fewer studies have included Black and interracial same-sex couples. You & Me will examine how agreements and other relationship-based factors may influence HIV risk behaviors among same-sex couples.

If you're apart of a same-sex couple or not there's many ways you can be involved.

And don't you just love the visual of beautiful black gay couples? Loldarian.com favorite Yolo Akili, whom you will be seeing more of later this month poses as one of the models along with New Jersey -based writer and activist Darnell Moore, and former executive director of Queers for Economic Justice Kenyon Farrow.


Super sexy and talented indie singer Steph Jones returns with his latest single 'Southern Love' and a smoking hot video that both the ladies and his gay fans can appreciate. Jones is accompanied by co-star and America's Next Top Model Cycle 9 winner Saleisha Stowers.

"In this video you get the rawest form of Steph Jones anyone has seen. No hat, no glasses, no fancy clothes. Just me being there for someone in need," says Jones.

The track is hot and Jones channels an intensity and longing for his partner in his sultry voice that literally jumps off the screen. Jones is an loldarian.com favorite and straight ally. Who could forget his amazing YouTube video "The Gays Are Coming."? Get into Steph Jones in 'Southern Love' in the video below.

0 comments | Monday, March 07, 2011

If you're like me then you're probably starving for images and stories that reflect your experience as an LGBT person of color. Here's CHANGE another independent film that's gaining quite a buzz on the film festival circuit.

On the day of the 2008 election a bright young African American student, JAMIE, is among a group of teenagers presenting their case to the class as to why the candidate of their choice should be elected president. When, Ivan – the openly gay student - stands to speak, he is bullied by some of the boys in the class. Later, the same boys make plans to humiliate Ivan further by spraying graffiti on his house. Jamie steps in to prevent it by suggesting that they should do it after Proposition 8 has passed and the boys agree to wait until the next day.

At home, we see Jamie’s true nature when he talks to Ivan on the street, reassuring him that the proposition to ban same sex marriage will never pass in California and then, in the secrecy of his bedroom, he looks at gay porn magazines.

When Obama’s victory is announced Jamie celebrates with his family and shares a special moment with his Grandmother as he recognizes the importance of the occasion for her.

The following day Jamie is shocked to learn that Proposition 8 has indeed passed. He sprints to Ivan’s house to try and prevent the boys from spraying it but arrives too late – the deed is done and Ivan sits alone on the front porch.
Jamie sits beside his friend and tries to comfort him. They share a moment together, when suddenly Jamie’s friends arrive on the scene and discover what Jamie has been hiding from them. Ivan starts to panic, but Jamie is steadfast in wanting to confront his friends no matter what the consequences.

Click here for a list of screenings across the U.S. and the UK. Watch the trailer for CHANGE below.

The Center for Disease Control and Living Out Loud with Darian have teamed up to make sure Black gay men are being proactive about our sexual health. You may have noticed the banner on the right side of the blog all month questioning your HIV status. If you don't know your status simply click on the banner to find a testing site in your area. In the case of HIV/AIDS what you don't know can hurt you.

Here's a few facts as it relates to HIV/AIDS among black gay men directly from the CDC:

• By race/ethnicity, African Americans face the most severe burden of HIV in the
United States.

• 1 in 16 Black men will be diagnosed with HIV at some point in his lifetime.

• Every 9½ minutes (on average), someone in the United States is infected with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS.

• More than 1 million people in the United States are living with HIV.

• Of those 1 million people living with HIV, 1 out of 5 do not know they are infected. (People who have HIV but don't know it can unknowingly pass the virus to their partners).

• It is important for everyone to get the facts, talk about HIV/AIDS with partners and loved ones, reduce risk behaviors, and get tested to learn their HIV status.

• Put yourself to the test. CDC recommends that gay and bisexual men be tested for HIV at least annually. Men with multiple partners or anonymous partners, and men who have sex while using drugs or whose partner engages in these activities, should be tested more frequently (every 3-6 months).

• Check and recheck. Knowing and rechecking your HIV status is a critical step toward stopping HIV transmission, because if you know you are infected, you can take steps to protect your partners. Also, if you are infected, the sooner you find out, the sooner you can receive life-extending treatment.

• Start talking. Talk to everyone you know about HIV—friends and family, coworkers, and neighbors. Have ongoing and open discussions with your partners about HIV testing and risk behaviors.

• Talking openly about HIV can reduce the stigma that keeps too many from seeking the testing, prevention and treatment services, and support they need.

• Call 1-800-CDC-INFO or visit www.hivtest.org to find HIV testing locations near you.

| Friday, March 04, 2011

Sorry about my absence. Still learning how to juggle being a full- time student with a full time-job, a full-time boyfriend, and a full time-blog. Sleep is rare these days. Be back next week.

2 comments | Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Washington Post staff writers Krissah Thompson and Hamil Harris have penned a piece on the lack of outcry from socially conservative African-Americans regarding president Obama and the Department of Justice's decision not to defend DOMA in court. Could this also be the beginning of a shift in the attitudes of African-Americans towards same-sex marriage now that two family oriented Black men, Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder, are leading the way towards eradicating the discriminatory law?

The Washington Post reports:

Rev. Anthony Evans, a minister who heads the National Black Church Initiative, had a strong negative reaction to the announcement that Obama no longer believes the Defense of Marriage Act, called DOMA, is constitutional. After Obama told Attorney General Eric Holder to stop defending it, the minister put out a statement condemning the decision.

"The president has harmed himself on this issue," he said. "He has openly offended the black church, and he didn't need to do it." But Evans plans to continue to support Obama on other issues, such as preventing a rollback of health care reform.

Rev. Henry P. Davis, pastor of the First Baptist Church of Highland Park in Landover, was lukewarm on the issue, saying the issue of gay rights doesn't resonate with his parishioners. "I know that there is a great wrestling nationally around this issue, but [here] people are still mainly concerned about their everyday economic existence, those issues are much larger," Davis said.

An open question, said J. Kameron Carter, an associate professor in theology and black church studies, is whether Obama's shifting policy on same-sex marriage will impact black attitudes on the issue. "The fact that these initiatives are coming from the government - and not just that - from Obama and Holder, two African American family men, is going to generate conversation among African Americans," Carter said. "This can open a very fruitful and interesting dialogue."

Sharon Lettman-Hicks, executive director of the National Black Justice Coalition, which advocates for gay rights, praised Obama's decision, saying it makes clear "there is not just one moral authority in the black community."

The lack of fiery condemnation regarding Obama's decision from black evangelicals is promising, but the belief that gay rights are not civil rights, paired with the exclusion of black gays and lesbians by our own when discussing gay issues is beyond troubling.

See Here and Here.

h/t Son of Baldwin


Here's your first look at the new independent film Punch Me. With a romance on the rocks and a father on his sick bed, a young man must accept his true identity before he loses the two people he loves most.

The film is written by Robert X. Golphin (The Great Debaters) who also stars along with Brian Anthony Wilson (HBO’s “The Wire”), and newcomer Elwood Idris Simon.

Punch Me won the official selection prize at the 2011 Marlon Riggs Film Festival in Dallas, Texas and is currently on the film festival circuit. Our copy of Punch Me is on the way. Be sure to lookout for more info regarding Punch Me on loldarian.com in the coming weeks.

Watch the trailer below:


And now for your daily dose of crazy courtesy of Nation of Islam leader "Minister" Louis Farrakhan.

Farrakhan addressed over 18,000 of his followers last Sunday at the annual Saviors Day convention in Chicago during an erratic speech in which he hailed Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi, Scientology, warned of a similar revolution taking place in the Middle East happening in America, and slammed gays and pop singer Rihanna as "swine".

The Chicago-Sun Times reports:

His speech also covered familiar topics from previous Savior’s Day events, including a focus on the common beliefs of Christians and Muslims who he said “should not be at war with one another,” how the Nation of Islam believes that white people were created from blacks 4,000 years ago on an Aegean island by a black scientist, and on problems affecting the black community, including street gangs.

He also criticized the sexually charged performances of popstar Rihanna, saying they were “filthy” and that people who enjoyed such antics were “swine,” a description he also applied to homosexuals and lesbians. He also criticized immigrant Muslims in the Chicago area for moving to white suburbs and being patronizing toward black Muslims.

During Black History Month, schools should teach from Nation of Islam books that say Jewish people took advantage of blacks, he said. An Anti-Defamation League spokesman said Farrakhan’s comments were “just the usual hate speech and propoganda.”

He warned that non-believers and the sinful would face the wrath of God through high-technology UFOs or “wheels” that he has often described in previous addresses.

If there was any doubt that nut jobs can be found in every religion then Farrakhan has just erased it. All of this from a man and a "brotherhood" who were responsible for the death of one of their own.


Incredibly sad new to report. Author and professor of Divinity at Harvard Rev. Peter Gomes has passed away at 68. His death, which was first reported by The Harvard Crimson, was confirmed by Emily Lemiska, a spokeswoman at Massachusetts General Hospital, where Mr. Gomes had recently been treated.

The New York Times reports on the life and legacy of Gomes who courageously came out in 1991 on the conservative Ivy League campus.

From The New York Times:

At Harvard, he was the Plummer Professor of Christian Morals at the School of Divinity and the Pusey Minister of Memorial Church, a nondenominational center of Christian life on campus. For decades, he was among the first and the last to address undergraduates, greeting arriving freshman with a sermon on hallowed traditions, and advising graduating seniors about the world beyond the sheltering Harvard Yard.

Then in 1991, he appeared before an angry crowd of students, faculty members and administrators protesting homophobic articles in a conservative campus magazine whose distribution had led to a spate of harassment and slurs against gay men and lesbians on campus. Mr. Gomes, putting his reputation and career on the line, announced that he was “a Christian who happens as well to be gay.”

When the cheers faded, there were expressions of surprise from the Establishment, and a few calls for his resignation, which were ignored. The announcement changed little in Mr. Gomes’s private life; he had never married and said he was celibate by choice. But it was a major turning point for him professionally.

“I now have an unambiguous vocation — a mission — to address the religious causes and roots of homophobia,” he told The Washington Post months later. “I will devote the rest of my life to addressing the ‘religious case’ against gays.”

One can read into the Bible almost any interpretation of morality, he liked to say after coming out, for its passages had been used to defend slavery and the liberation of slaves, to support racism, anti-Semitism and patriotism, to enshrine a dominance of men over women, and to condemn homosexuality as immoral.

My personal memory of Gomes reaches as far back as my junior year in high school when I came across The Good Book: Reading The Bible with Mind and Heart, a work he created to refute all of the "clobber passages" from the bible used to condemn and demoralize gays and lesbians. I'll never forget the spiritual liberation I experienced after reading it and the heated debate that followed my oral presentation on its contents in my literature class. Gomes opened up an alternate interpretation of the bible for me and if it weren't for him I'd most likely be separated from God and the church today. He will be missed.

Watch Gomes discuss what he believed Jesus would say about same-sex marriage in the clip below.