Kim Kardashian Accuses Taylor Swift of Lying in Response to Leaked Kanye West Call

Kim Kardashian, Taylor Swift Kim Kardashian has spoken.
In a series of tweets posted Monday night, the E! reality star responded to Taylor Swift’s recent statement regarding the alleged release of…

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Hailey Bieber Has the Best Response to “Funny” Pregnancy Rumors

Hailey Bieber, Justin BieberHailey Bieber is not pregnant, OK?
The model, who has been spending time in Miami this week with husband Justin Bieber, took to her Instagram Story on Friday to shut down pregnancy…

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Hillary Clinton Fires Off Response To NASA’s Female Spacesuit Problem

She *is* a suit expert, after all.
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Starbucks Bans Porn Over Its Wi-Fi Service, Porn Company Has Petty Response

The Starbucks logo seen in Krakow...

Source: SOPA Images / Getty

Starting at the top of next year, coffee chain giant Starbucks is banning the viewing of porn over its free Wi-Fi service. In response, a streaming adult video company has banned the java from its offices.

TMZ reports:

Reps for YouPorn tell TMZ … the porn giant is now strictly pushing Dunkin’ coffee on its workforce. The company’s VP sent a memo to employees announcing a ban on all Starbucks products from YouPorn offices effective New Year’s Day.

Point is … 2 can play this game.

Starbucks just announced it’s blocking customers from watching XXX material while on their free WiFi, this after mounting pressure from the Internet safety group, Enough is Enough. YouPorn is simply responding in kind with a blockade of its own.

Starbucks made the announcement that it would be banning porn over its network earlier this week, and admitted that while it wasn’t a rampant occurrence, the company wants to truly begin enforcing the policy although rare cases have been cited of patrons watching naughty movies while having a cup of joe.

Photo: Getty

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Jay-Z’s ’99 Problems’ Triggers Police Response for Domestic Violence Call

Ever blurted out Jay-Z’s famous lyric to “99 Problems”? Bet it’s never resulted in cops pointing guns at you … ’cause that’s EXACTLY what happened to one man in Tennessee. Davon Eddington tells TMZ … he was in his backyard last week in…


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Kourtney Kardashian Has The Best Response to Hater Who Says She ”Never” Works

Kourtney KardashianKourtney Kardashian is not letting her busy schedule stand in the way of standing up for herself.
On Friday, the mother-of-three shared a sexy snap of herself lounging poolside in a…

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Tekashi69 Performing at Jay-Z’s Festival Triggers Massive Security Response

Organizers for Jay-Z’s Made in America Festival are taking ZERO chances when Tekashi69 performs next month … they’ve beefed up security to avoid the violence that seems to follow the rapper. A rep for the Mayor’s Office of Philadelphia tells…


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Stephen Colbert Has A Golden Response To Latest Trump ‘Pee Tape’ Claims

Wild new claims lead to a flood of “Late Show” jokes.
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Episode 21: Predicting the U.S. response to the Syrian chemical attack


How will the U.S. respond to the Syrian chemical attack?

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Meryl Streep Speaks Out In Response To Rose McGowan’s Criticism: ‘I Wasn’t Deliberately Silent’

Meryl released a statement about Harvey Weinstein along with a request to personally chat with Rose after she was called out for her silent protest in a now-deleted tweet. Rose wrote, “Actresses, like Meryl Streep, who happily worked for The Pig Monster, are wearing black @goldenglobes in a silent protest. YOUR SILENCE is THE problem.” Find out what Meryl had to say in response.

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Brutal Memes Mock Joel Osteen Over His Hurricane Harvey Response

The Houston pastor is now the poster boy for how not to act in a crisis.
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Metro Boomin Gave Young Thug A Time & A Place, Gets Smiley Face Response

On Wednesday, Nov. 11, Metro Boomin made Young Thug blink. The highly in demand Atlanta producer gave Thugger a place to meet him to discuss their issues, and all he got was a smiley face for an answer. 

After Metro Boomin went on Twitter to say Future set the trend of rappers dropping mixtapes back to back like a Drake song, Young Thug caught feelings. Thugger took to Twitter, quizzically comparing himself to Michael Jackson while trying to slander Future.

Plenty of not so veiled shots followed, but Metro Boomin stayed out of the the fray, until Wednesday afternoon.

“I’m in the city @ the spot right now bra and we know each other in REAL life so u can pull up whenever kuz u know I ain’t no hoe,” he tweeted.

Young Thug’s response was a smiley face.

Maybe there is still hope for the Metro Thuggin collab? Considering Metro Boomin is slinging tracks at Future and Drake, amongst others, a possible lack of new Young Thug collabs in his discography won’t be too sorely missed, though.

And to think, Metro says he wasn’t even subtweeting Young Thug at all.

Screen Shot 2015-11-11 at 11.27.32 PM


Screen Shot 2015-11-11 at 11.40.24 PM

Photo: Instagram


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‘Gear up!’ See Tom Hanks’ awesome response to school’s homecoming tribute

The Academy Award-winning actor hinted at contributing to Kerman High School’s homecoming after its hashtag, #TomHanks2KermanHC, went viral.

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A Photographer Lost A Client For Supporting Marriage Equality. His Response Shows Why #LoveWins

A photographer in Florida says he lost a client after he showed his support online for marriage equality. His response to the situation has won him legions of fans.

Following the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark decision to legalize gay marriage nationwide last week, Clinton Brentwood Lee of Brentwood Photography took to Facebook to show his support for the decision, changing his profile picture and cover photo.

Lee says a client later contacted him to say that they would no longer be “using [his] services” for their upcoming wedding.

“My fiancé and I support traditional marriage between a man and a woman and don’t want to our money going to places that supports otherwise [sic],” the client allegedly wrote.

The photographer shared a screenshot of the exchange on Facebook Saturday, with the caption: “Lost a client for supporting gay marriage. But that’s ok! We love everyone, even this now former client who may not have liked our reply. Lol.”

This was Lee’s full response to the client:

Wow, I’m not really sure what to say here. I would say this disappoints me, but I actually find this to be a good thing because our company now would now not like to work with you as well.

It’s not that because you have a different view from us, but it’s because, since you don’t like an support gay marriage, no one else should be able to have it. That’s like me not liking broccoli, and demanding that everyone else in the world should not have broccoli either! If you’re not in favor of gay marriage that’s fine, don’t marry a woman.

Personally, I was taught not to judge others and to love everyone else. So I will try not to judge you here and say anything more as to my opinion of you.

At Brentwood Photography we see love in all forms. Now as far as your retainer goes, I hope you’ll read the first article in the contract you signed stating that this retainer is nonrefundable.

But don’t you worry, I’m not going to keep it!

Because of this conversation, I have decided to donate your $ 1500 to GLAAD [the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation], a group created to help and support gay rights.

So let me be the first to say [redacted], thank you very much for your donation and support for this great cause!

I couldn’t have done it without your money.

Sincerely and with Love,
Brentwood Photography

The Facebook post has since been liked more than 58,000 times, with scores of netizens praising the photographer for choosing principle over profit.

Lee told Buzzfeed that he’s also received his fair share of hate mail.

“I think it’s truly beautiful the amount of positive messages and words of encouragement I have received, it is been about 90 percent positive and 10 percent gut wrenching sad personal attacks,” he said. “The hate that comes out of these people’s mouths make me want to cry, but the 90 percent give me the strength to stay strong and not doubt what I did.”

The photographer added that he’s been called a “crook” for not returning the money to the client. He stressed, however, that they signed a contract clearly stating that the deposit was non-refundable.

“The retainer is paid for and there to protect us,” he told Buzzfeed, adding that the client responded to his message with the words: “Companies like yours are the reason our country is falling apart… Good luck with the queers, ASSHOLE!”

Ultimately, Lee says he’s “happy I took a stand.”

There’s just one thing he wishes he could change.

“The only thing I wish I had changed … is where it says I support ‘Gay Marriage,’” he wrote on Instagram Sunday. “While I 100 percent do, I wish I had just said that I support marriage opportunity for all. We shouldn’t have to call it ‘gay marriage’ like it is something different. It’s just marriage. Like it is between a man or a woman or a black person and a white person. Every person on this planet deserves their own happy ever after, even if it is different from your view of it.”

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Overvalued Genitals and Undervalued Brains – A Trans Response to Christian Conservatives Uncomfortable with Caitlyn Jenner

The impact of Jenner’s debut has been nothing short of extraordinary. Media outlets that struggled to properly report on trans persons in police blotters just a few years ago are suddenly interested in the topic. “Ex-trans persons,” those few scattered across the country over many years, suddenly become resurrected. Christians of all stripes begin to weigh in directly, not simply flinging afterthoughts to their decades-long homophobia.

I’d like to address the response of the Christian conservatives. I had found it tantalizing during my years of advocacy in Maryland that some of those most opposed to gay rights and marriage equality were either supportive of trans persons or, at worst, apathetic. They wouldn’t support gender identity legislation, so as not to break with their anti-gay team which found the distinctions between and trans confusing, and thereby dangerous to consistency of message, but seeing trans as a medical condition they were surprisingly sympathetic.

Today, post-Jenner, with the surrender of many religious conservatives on the impending “redefinition of marriage,” they can no longer afford to treat trans persons as afterthoughts. We must be attacked head-on theologically. That, however, is proving to be rather difficult.

The most notorious transphobe, the Catholic Professor Paul McHugh, a decade ago accepted the reality of gender identity when his Hopkins colleague, Bill Reiner, proved its existence scientifically. While he still sees trans women as mentally ill, because he can’t unravel gender identity from sexual orientation, he’s been left behind by his fellow psychiatric colleagues who long ago, with few exceptions, gave up any religious underpinning to issues of sex and gender. The article referenced above with his most recent rant (pity poor Johns Hopkins University which can’t get this guy to stop from embarrassing them) actually had the temerity to state that ” there are scientists who disagree,” as if there are today more than a handful. McHugh is a classic example of a professor in over his head – a psychiatrist who doesn’t understand the basics of human sexuality recognized by all professional medical organizations, including the World Health Organization, and a Catholic fundamentalist who seems to have never studied ancient texts.

An American Catholic theologian, Salvatore Cordileone, the Archbishop of San Francisco, sums up his critique of transsexualism by stating, categorically, “The clear biological fact is that a human being is born either male or female. “End of story. However, there are traditions in ancient Biblical culture (Midrash Bereshit Rabbah 8:1) that had the first being as an intersex person, an hermaphrodite.

The Rabbis of 2000 years ago recognized six types of sex among humans – female, male, androgynous, tum tum, aylonit and saris -and the Torah (Isaiah 56:4-5), as well as later Christian Scripture, recognized eunuchs (saris, many of whom were either intersex or trans women) as a higher form of humanity. It’s very hard to pin your entire catalog of disapproval on one sentence in Deuteronomy, and those efforts pale in comparison to the concoction of millennia of homophobia rooted in one sentence in Leviticus.

So why this resistance? Even Biblical literalists must recognize there are many passages which conflict with the absolute pronouncements of a Cordileone or McHugh, who, by the way, was responsible for the Vatican’s pronouncement back when it was run by the right-wing Benedict. When they get down to it, they always revert to a view of biological sex as rooted in genitalia. But, as I’ve pointed out, religious authorities (and the Greeks before them) have for millennia recognized that sexual anatomy and physiology are not that simple.

This belief, that genitals = sex, has been so deeply rooted in society that intersex babies have been left to die or “converted” into vagina-bearing beings raised as girls once the surgical techniques allowed the condition of ambiguous genitalia to be resolved to the wishes of the parents. When modern medicine routinely considered the birth of an intersex infant to be a pediatric emergency, and hid the follow-up care in silence and obfuscation, it’s no wonder that the average individual can’t comprehend that we have minds that are sexed to the degree where we know what sex we are, irrespective of our genital anatomy. There are millions of intersex individuals whose chromosomes and genes don’t match their genitalia or whose genitals are ambiguous, and it seems clear that if they would only come out as gay and trans persons have over the past few decades, society would have a hard time ignoring the complexity of human sexuality.

It’s one thing to deny the embodied brain and its manifestation in a subjective feeling of gender identity, because that is a function of a theory of mind that as yet has few tangible physical manifestations. People’s difficulties coming to grips with all sorts of brain conditions and their mental and emotional manifestations makes that abundantly clear. But when presented with live humans with Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome or 5′-alpha reductase deficiency, it become impossible, short of a categorical denial of reality, to ignore the scientific evidence. Church leaders have been allowed for too long to evade the medical evidence.

Southern Baptists who talk of trans persons “rejecting your gender” misread the fact that trans people are doing the exact opposite – embracing their gender and their sex as embodied in their brains. Russell Moore, the head of the ethics arm of the Southern Baptist Convention, said, “The cultural narrative behind the transgender turn … is rooted in the ancient heresy of Gnosticism, with the idea that the ‘real’ self is separate from who one is as an embodied, material being.” Aside from the fact that few people care about “ancient heresies” in general or Gnosticism in particular, the core of the trans experience is indeed rooted in “an embodied, material being.” Just not in the overvalued genitals but in the undervalued brain.

At times it hard for me to accept that some men of religious persuasions are so intent to circle the wagons to maintain their hegemony and control over their womenfolk, and so afraid of a few hundred thousand trans women who are comfortable with being rid of an appendage that developed in opposition to their brain (because, if you bother to check, human sexual development in utero is a complex dance with many moves and, therefore, many outcomes). Acceptance of the trans experience will not lead to millions undergoing gender transition, just as the growth of same-sex marriage has not led to the catastrophic disappearance of opposite-sex marriage. If it’s led to anything novel, beyond the bourgeoisification of the gay experience, it’s the growth in gay divorces.

The Christian community is the victim of its forty-year tradition of equating every natural disaster with gay behavior, and imagining the worst possible outcome to every possible situation. Maybe that tradition derives from the Revelation stories, and so has a long and venerable history, but it’s a lousy way to live. Especially when it means driving your children to suicide or being in a state of high anxiety every time you enter a public bathroom.

I will take issue with Emma Green’s closing comment in The Atlantic piece: “The adjustment period on this issue will be complicated. And as the response to Caitlyn Jenner has shown, it’s only just beginning.” The adjustment period is at times complicated, but it has been going full throttle for the past 15 years. While few have been paying attention, science and medicine, academia, corporate America, the federal government, almost half of the state governments, and over 200 municipalities, many of which exist in red states, have been adjusting and doing so successfully. Cait Jenner just lifted the lid off the volcano; the pioneers have been at work for decades, and thanks to seemingly endless supplies of courage, tenacious advocacy and education, often against strong resistance and heavy odds, have made Jenner’s transition possible.

All that’s changed is that now, thanks to Jenner, “the whole world’s watching.”

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The Flawless Response This Woman Had To A Dude Who Told Her She Needed To Lose Weight

One surefire way to not pick up a lady: Tell her she needs to lose weight.

On June 3, marketing director and fashion blogger Christina Topacio took to Twitter to share an offensive and sexist text message conversation she had with a guy she had never actually met in real life.

The audacious dude told Topacio that while he would “seriously consider dating” her and “getting to know” her, he thinks she needs to change a few things. This unsolicited advice was not necessary (to say the least).

“It fucking kills me to say this… And it’s nothing you don’t already know,” the guy wrote in a text to Topacio. “And I’m positive you’ve thought about it. And I’m only telling you this because I want it to effect a change. You need to fucking lose weight. It kills me.”

Topacio told The Huffington Post that she met the guy on a dating site where they exchanged numbers, however, they had never hung out in person.

She tweeted screenshots of the entire text message conversation yesterday to her 8,500 followers, receiving over 2,500 retweets. Check out the cringeworthy exchange below:

“My first reaction was, literally, ‘Wait, what?!'” Topacio told HuffPost. “Then, I got sad. Like, this person has never seen me in real life. I was baffled.”

She said that she shared the conversation on social media to empower women to stand up for themselves. “My goal is to encourage girls to not only brush it off, despite how hurtful it is, and to laugh it away,” she said. “I want women to feel empowered to stand up for themselves, own who they are and understand that someone else’s opinion has no relation to them being an amazing person.”

“My story is not a new story, this happens to women constantly,” she added. “I’m just happy to have been given an opportunity to share my personal experience in hopes that it empowers women to shut it down. And ultimately say… I’m beautiful, I’m strong, I’m powerful, I’m 100 percent me.”

Take note of Topacio’s flawless response:

christina 4

Haters gonna hate and Christina’s gonna eat her Chipotle.

Go on with your beautiful, strong and powerful self, Christina.

H/T BuzzFeed

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This Woman Had the Perfect Response to a Guy Who Told Her ”You Need to F–king Lose Weight”

Christina Topacio, TweetsDear guys, if you’re unsure about how to approach a female, please refer to the following story as what not to do.

Meet Christina Topacio, a brunette beauty and marketing director…

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Michael B. Jordan Pens Perfect Response To Trolls Mad He’s The Black Human Torch

Marvel Comics employs several alternate variations of their beloved characters, with many appearing as a different race, color or often, another sexual orientation.

Unfortunately for humanity’s sake, Michael B. Jordan’s casting a Johnny Storm a.k.a. the Human Torch in the upcoming Fantastic Four reboot has overshadowed anything else regarding the movie. And yes, it’s because he’s Black.

Although he could have ignored all the racist social media posts as the movie’s August 7 release date approached, he linked up with Entertainment Weekly for a fantastic op-ed where he gives his well-articulated opinion on the situation.

Here’s an excerpt:

It used to bother me, but it doesn’t anymore. I can see everybody’s perspective, and I know I can’t ask the audience to forget 50 years of comic books. But the world is a little more diverse in 2015 than when the Fantastic Four comic first came out in 1961. Plus, if Stan Lee writes an email to my director saying, “You’re good. I’m okay with this,” who am I to go against that?

Some people may look at my casting as political correctness or an attempt to meet a racial quota, or as part of the year of “Black Film.” Or they could look at it as a creative choice by the director, Josh Trank, who is in an interracial relationship himself—a reflection of what a modern family looks like today.

This is a family movie about four friends—two of whom are myself and Kate Mara as my adopted sister—who are brought together by a series of unfortunate events to create unity and a team. That’s the message of the movie…To the trolls on the Internet, I want to say: Get your head out of the computer…this is the world we live in.

Jordan has earned his acting stripes by appearing in acclaimed appearances such as Fruitvale Station and The Wire but good luck telling a keyboard bigot that.

Hit the next page to see Jordan in full costume as the Human Torch. Ladies, that especially means you.

Photos: Judy Eddy/, Marvel/20th Century FOX

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The Pentagon’s Response to Ted Cruz Regarding Jade Helm 15

Recently, Senator Ted Cruz from Texas asked the Pentagon to clarify its intentions with military exercises in Central Texas called “Jade Helm 15.” The Pentagon’s response follows:

Dear Senator Cruz:

Thank you for your inquiry into whether the Jade Helm 15 military exercise is the first wave of a federal takeover of Texas, the Trojan Horse, as it were, of the end of sovereignty in the Lone Star State. Our response, contrary to the long tradition of official correspondence and military bureaucracy, is concise: no.

But that’s just what you would expect us to say, isn’t it?

Perhaps, then, you would prefer not an official proclamation but a reasoned answer. As a master debater in college (Princeton, right?), you surely appreciate the reliability of logic, your public statements over the past few years notwithstanding. If you are disinclined to take the United States Armed Forces at their word when we promise no ill intentions towards Texas, then perhaps your considerable and vaunted intellectual powers, which once posited the regrowth of hymens as a guard against unauthorized incursions in domestic affairs, could be swayed by incontrovertible fact.

I know you think highly of our capabilities. Why else would you advocate for a short war with Iran? If we are indeed that powerful, we could probably launch an attack from any of the 15 U.S. military bases already within Texas’ borders. While Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher may have found it necessary, even attractive, to invade countries that can easily be overrun, the present DoD considers such lopsided contests at best unsporting.

As someone who was not born within the borders of this country, it might interest you to know that Texas is already part of the United States. In fact, Texas has twice joined the Union. The first time your adopted state joined the USA in 1845 it set in motion events that led to the Mexican-American War. Later, when Union troops conquered the Southern rebellion, Texas rejoined the Union. It is not, therefore, farfetched to think that Texas’ relationship to the rest of the United States could involve war, but please also keep in mind that when we refer to the United States of America, Texas is being implicitly included. We thought about calling it the United States of America and Texas, but we were afraid people might think Texas was a retrograde backwater of reactionary lunatics who think Moses was a Founding Father and laugh at you. This is way better.

Please also consider there are a great many things about Texas and Texan culture that could be threatened by another unnecessary armed conflict between Texas and the United States. We like Texas barbecue. That Green Beret who carried the flag out for the Texas Longhorn football team? That was pretty cool. The wildflowers along the highways are no joke. The late Texan Chris Kyle, the “American sniper,” is a hero to many. Texas gave the world Lyndon Johnson, a staggering gift for which America was perhaps not entirely prepared. Without the Lone Star State, the Western swing band Bob Wills and His Texas Playboys would have appeared under the performing name Robert Wills and His Playboys, which is ghastly, or not have existed at all, a possibility that DoD has officially classified as “too awful to contemplate”. And we really dig the self-awareness, the love of self that, while occasionally metastasizing into paranoid delusions such as those that motivated your original query, also make Texas a culture with an indelible sense of place.

But, we reiterate, that place is in the United States. On previous visits, we noticed that many of your residents enjoy Social Security and Medicare (you’re welcome), volunteer for the armed services, treasure federal parks, wildlife preserves, and wilderness areas, and earn and spend currency backed by the full faith and credit of the United States. With a quick Internet search, I also learned that nearly a third of Texas’ total revenue is from Federal funding. In fact, millions of your schoolchildren pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America almost every day. And unlike yourself, they apparently mean it.

There is a fundamental misapprehension that we feel is at the root of your query about our intentions was revealed in a recent comment you made to the press.

We are assured it is a military training exercise. I have no reason to doubt those assurances, but I understand the reason for concern and uncertainty, because when the federal government has not demonstrated itself to be trustworthy in this administration, the natural consequence is that many citizens don’t trust what it is saying.

If, Senator Cruz, you believe that the United States military is a political tool of its civilian leadership, you have reached a conclusion unsupported by fact, history and good sense. The troops swear to uphold the Constitution of the United States. To besmirch their loyalty to the country, even in the service of making hackneyed political points in the Republican primary, does not make you a patriot, but a partisan. Even a Princeton and Harvard Law man should know the difference.

Also, it makes you the rudest Canadian we’ve ever run across.

Sincerely Yours,

Secretary Ashton Carter

Elie Jacobs and Frank Spring, who along with Jason Stanford are political partners of the Truman National Security Project, contributed equally to this post but suffer lesser billing because of Stanford’s inability to figure out certain technological hurdles.

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This Dog Has The Best Response To The Word ‘Hallelujah’

This pup’s skills are anything but basic.

If you’ve ever been impressed by your dog’s ability to sit on command, well, we have some news for you. This pooch responds adorably — and impressively! — to the word “hallelujah.”

Don’t believe us? Check out the video above, and prepare to sing this dog’s praises.

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He Told His Boyfriend, ‘I Love You.’ His Boyfriend’s Response Brought Him to Tears. (VIDEO)


I’m From Driftwood is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit archive for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer stories. New stories are posted on the site every Wednesday.

When Michael Coulter left Flint, Michigan, and went to college, he “met more gay people in one hour” than he had in his entire life. But there was one who caught his eye, and that boy would become his first love. Michael recalls:

The more we hung out, the more I was falling for him, just because no one had ever shown me that type of attention before. And from then on, I just felt like, “OK, this guy — he’s turning into my everything.” And I remember just pouring myself into him, and the more we were together, the more I was feeling for him and having these feelings of love for him.

As the school year continued, Michael’s feelings only grew stronger, and with summer break approaching, he felt like he was ready to share his feelings:

I was shaking in my boots, because I was like, “I have to say this. This is my moment. I have to get this out. I’m not going to see him again until the fall, so I have to say this.” So I looked him in the eye, and I said, “I love you.” And he looked me in the eye and said, “Aww, thank you.” And that was it. And I was crushed. And he basically just left. He was like, “OK, have a great summer.”

The relationship ended, and nothing was ever the same for them after that. Michael finished college and moved back home, awaiting his move to New York City. To his surprise, he met someone before leaving Flint and ended up in the exact same scenario he’d just been in, but with the roles reversed this time:

I could see in his eyes that he was developing these very, very intense feelings for me. And in my mind I was thinking about New York City. One night we were in his room on his floor, making out, when suddenly he just started crying, and he looked up at me, and he whispered — he couldn’t even say it fully — but he whispered, “I love you so much.”

Michael reflected on his previous experience and responded the way he thought he should:

[I]n my mind I was like, “Whoa.” And so I did not want him to feel that way at all; I didn’t want to put him through the pain that I felt, and so I said, “I love you too.”


For more stories, visit I’m From Driftwood, the LGBTQ Story Archive.
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Community Civility and a Response to the Controversy Over The Vagina Monologues at Mount Holyoke

I’d like to follow up on my previous blog post on the Mount Holyoke College controversy surrounding The Vagina Monologues because of the responses I’ve received. They’ve run the gamut from praise to condemnation, from thanks for informing the community of an important event in trans history to constructive criticism as well as vicious name calling. Aside from the cliché that if the responses are all over the map, I must be doing something right, the criticisms highlighted some very important points, some of which I had space to make in the first blog post, and some of which I didn’t.

The consensus from my fellow actors was that I got it right, so I’m pleased that my memory jives with that of my friends. I also believe I promoted Eve Ensler’s position correctly, as she quickly published her own response, to which I was able to link (thanks to editing delays due to the King holiday). I will reiterate that my purpose in publishing that post was to inform the public that Eve Ensler is not transphobic, nor has she been transphobic, and I could document that because I was part of the ensemble cast performance of the first all-trans cast. I’ve done that, and now to the rest.

Within hours of publication, I was subjected to a Twitterbombing, being described as racist, ageist, elitist and arrogant, and connecting me to a host of questionable LGBT characters. These ad hominem and association-fallacy attacks, what I have called “manufactured strategic outrage,” are too often the reflexive response of some activists. A famous African-American activist, Flo Kennedy, classified these attacks as “horizontal hostility,” describing members of a community attacking their colleagues, actions which often prove to be self-destructive.

The first rule of politics is “Take nothing personally.” Admittedly that is very hard to do, particularly when running for office, because that is a quintessential personal endeavor in our political system. But it is absolutely essential if you’re going to maintain your sanity and be able to move forward and create change. The foremost tool of incumbents is psychological warfare, and while electoral campaigning is known to generate personal attacks, general political activism is rife with them as well.

I was accused of being ageist because I was critical of college students. I see constructively criticizing college students as a sign of respect and a refusal to be patronizing, and I hope, for their sakes, that their professors do the same. In my world ageism is visible in the discrimination suffered by middle-aged workers who were laid off after the economic crash and have yet to find new work, because younger workers are willing (understandably) to work for much less. Discrimination is most serious when directed at those with less power; college students, particularly those at elite schools such as Mount Holyoke, have a great deal of privilege and should have the tools and support to be able to handle criticism. I don’t believe most want to be coddled.

I was accused of being insensitive to persons of color because I challenged a description of Eve Ensler as racist for using the death of Trayvon Martin as an opportunity to raise money for the feminist cause. I agree that efforts such as that, like the efforts of all non-profits that use tragedy and crisis as fundraising opportunities, including those in the national and local LGBT communities, are crass and disrespectful, which is why I don’t do that in my political work. There are moments when one should just put her causes aside and show her solidarity. But it isn’t racist and shouldn’t be used to burn bridges. This calling me a “racist” was truly stood on its head when I was later accused of being disrespectful to college students because “they decided against performing a rich white lady’s play.” Reducing Eve Ensler (this is a real example of reductionism, unlike the use of “vagina” in the play) to a “rich white lady” is an ad hominem attack and can itself be considered racist. Just imagine how you might feel if someone called Selma a “rich black lady’s film” because Oprah was a producer.

Then there was my reference to Calpernia Addams, who was a co-director of the performance and the reason it was performed. Calpernia is a friend, and while she and I vigorously disagree on the role of drag queens in the transgender community (she spends her professional career in the entertainment industry), we do so respectfully and don’t let it impact our friendship. There was once a time when Democrats and Republicans could disagree and remain friends socially, and when professionalism was common, but these activist attacks today reflect a much less civil culture. I don’t think that reduces me to a “Mr. Wilson” character yelling at kids to get off the lawn. For those who don’t get the Mr. Wilson reference, they probably also didn’t get the pop culture reference in the title, which was honorifically referring to the students by referring to Art Linkletter’s TV program back in the ’50s.

I was also criticized for mentioning Calpernia, in spite of her being the historical linchpin of my thesis about the history of The Vagina Monologues, because of comments that she and others made in reference to my blog post. I believe most columnists and bloggers understand that they are not responsible for the comments of others, and attacking me because of others’ comments is nothing more than guilt by association.

This piece wasn’t about “respecting your elders.” Had the students done their homework, there would be no issue. Had they said the play is too essentialist for their tastes, they could have generated an interesting debate about second- and third-wave feminism, which is important particularly because, as I mentioned, there are second wavers still active in claiming they’d like to exterminate all trans persons. For all I know, students on other campuses have navigated this issue quite successfully, and we don’t know it because they handled it without controversy.

There is the important issue of recognizing the consequences of one’s actions, which came up in my comments about trans men and Planned Parenthood. I don’t care if one wants to talk about “pregnant persons” rather than “pregnant women,” or “reproductive rights” rather than “women’s rights.” Planned Parenthood and NARAL aren’t, in the most literal sense, “women’s organizations,” primarily because there are many men who support the work as well. Do trans men have the right to criticize their language as exclusionary? Of course. Do the organizations have the right to reject the claim? Yes. The point was made to me that no one would be harmed by using more inclusive language. That’s the crux of the matter about consequences. Women’s bodily autonomy is still an explosive and divisive issue in this country. Millions of women are at risk as a result of the actions of those who not only oppose abortion rights but also the use of contraception. Millions of women, yet only dozens of trans men. Demanding a change to the language may be seen as selfish and a distraction to the mission, and those who oppose women’s autonomy may grab hold of it to tar the entire progressive movement, and feminism in particular. We don’t need more of that in this climate. The more rights women have in our society, the more rights pregnant trans men will have. They needn’t be explicitly recognized for that to happen. The same holds for anti-discrimination language. All trans subtypes needn’t be publicly recognized for all to be covered under the category of “gender identity and expression.”

Finally, though I listed a number of specific issues here, I want to repeat that I sense that the underlying problem is the reflexive lashing out due to a sense of personalization, which leads to feelings of victimization. Many, if not most, trans persons have been victimized over the course of their lives. I certainly have, and many times. But I’ve learned to think of myself not as a victim but as a survivor and use that as a source of empowerment. When I feel like responding in the moment, I step back and let my thoughts sit and cool off. Playing the victim card, in whatever manifestation — race card, ethnic card, gay card, etc. — simply doesn’t work in the larger battle of changing hearts and minds. Our successes are evidence of that. Let’s learn to channel what Orlando Figes called, in reference to one of the revolutionary parties in 1917 Russia, the “formless revolutionary spirit of students” and continue to build on the good, and do so in the spirit of what my good friend and trans leader Diego Sanchez recently said with respect to engaging and educating allies, patiently, constructively and respectfully:

“It takes time and trust to enact and honor a Treaty of the Heart among allies.”

I thank my interlocutors for engaging with me offline, educating me and listening, and allowing me to speak critically.
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‘I’m A Boxer’ Video Is A Powerful Response To Sexism In Sports

“Don’t call me a female boxer. I’m a boxer.”

These are the words spoken by a young athlete, who, like many girls, wants an equal playing field when it comes to sports.

In a powerful commercial made by Everlast, “I’m a Boxer” addresses the sexism faced by women in athletics every day. “I imagine a world where it doesn’t matter if you’re a boy or girl,” says the young girl in a voiceover. “What matters is how well you play.”

“There seems to be a trend happening where women’s career titles are constantly being genderized,” Claire Edmondson, who directed the commericial, wrote in an email to The Huffington Post. “For instance, I’m constantly referred to as a ‘female director’ instead of a ‘director’ and I wanted to address that. I also wanted to make something positive for young girls to see.”

Edmondson explained the message she wants these girls to take away from the video.

“I’m hoping that they feel encouraged to stick with whatever they are doing, even if it feels a little hopeless at time and for them to know they do matter.”

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Gay Irish Priest Comes Out To Parishioners — And Gets A Surprising Response

After serving a Roman Catholic parish in Ireland for 15 years, the Rev. Martin Dolan told congregants the truth about his sexual orientation over the weekend.

Dolan was standing at the pulpit during a Saturday mass at Dublin’s Church of St. Nicholas of Myra when he began encouraging parishioners to support legalizing same-sex marriage, according to The Irish Sun. Then, he made the unexpected announcement: “I’m gay myself.”

The priest reportedly received a standing ovation.

A community youth worker in Dublin told The Irish Sun, “We are all very proud of Father Martin. Because he has admitted that he is gay doesn’t change the person that he was before it.”

Two Irish LGBT rights groups confirmed the priest’s remarks to the HuffPost in emails.

Andrew Hyland, director of Marriage Equality, said that he lives on the same street as the church and that his father is one of Dolan’s parishioners.

“Fr. Dolan’s acknowledgement from the pulpit that he is gay and supports marriage equality has been warmly welcomed in Ireland,” Hyland wrote. “The parishioners of Francis Street have expressed a deep loyalty towards him since his brave announcement.”

Tiernan Brady, policy director for the Gay and Lesbian Equality Network, said Dolan’s coming out is “first and foremost a wonderful personal story.”

“It takes a lot of courage to do what Fr Dolan did and he must have experiences some trepidation before he said it,” Brady wrote. “The wonderful reaction of his congregation giving him a standing ovation after he spoke is a powerful endorsement of his brave decision.”

Neither Dolan nor Dublin’s archdiocese responded to requests for comment.

The church doesn’t formally ban gays from the priesthood, but requires all clergy to take a vow of celibacy. Pope Francis famously addressed the question of homosexuality in the priesthood in 2013, saying in Italian: “Who am I to judge a gay person of goodwill who seeks the Lord? You can’t marginalize these people.”

Ireland is preparing to hold a referendum on legalizing gay marriage in May. According to a 2011 census, Catholics made up 84.2 percent of Ireland’s population. Although the Catholic Church does not favor same-sex marriage, an Irish Times/Ipsos MRBI poll found that 71 percent of the electorate was willing to vote to approve marriage equality this spring.

“Fr. Dolan’s support will undoubtedly give a boost to a positive outcome in the referendum,” Hyland said. “It signals to people that despite what the hierarchy of the Church wills, regular Church goers can vote yes and know they join thousands of others in good conscience in doing so.

“Fr. Dolan’s move reminds people that many LGBT people have a deep faith and are an equal part of the Church and should be valued as such,” Hyland added.
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This Is The Perfect Response To Anyone Who Needs More ‘Space’

Next time someone tells you they need a little “space” — which we all know is code for “I want to break up but don’t have the guts to do it right now” — feel free to respond as this guy did:

Touché sir, touché.

This text first appeared on Reddit about a year ago, but since it popped up again on Instagram recently, we thought it too good not to share.

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The Most Disturbing Response to the Santa Barbara Tragedy

“If the killer had access to some high quality hookers for $ 150 a pop, it would have given him some meaning.” Sex & Love (RSS) Article Feed
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Thought-Provoking, Powerful #YesAllWomen Tweets in Response to Santa Barbara Tragedy

On Friday, Santa Barbara City College student Elliot Rodger, 22, reportedly killed six people and wounded 13 others in the college town of Isla Vista, home to UC Santa Barbara, according to the New York…

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Heather Starlet & Nicole Aniston in North Response

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