I hope you already caught Kat's "Kat's Korner: Joss Stone and Judy Collins crash and burn."
Now this is a video about the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.
Here is the synopsis YOUTUBE offers of the video:
Actor Richard Belzer talks about "Hit List" May 6, 2013 at the National Press Club. The book is billed as an in-depth investigation into what some see as the mysterious deaths of people linked to the President John F. Kennedy assassination story. Belzer describes the assassination as the "greatest murder mystery" of all time" - linking the deaths of fifty people, including columnist Dorothy Kilgallen, U2 pilot Gary Powers and Jack Ruby, the man who killed Lee Harvey Oswald. Belzer also presents evidence supporting the theory that there were two Lee Harvey Oswalds and how his death was set in motion by the FBI, the CIA, and the Mob. Belzer insists there is a timeline and there are witnesses who have proved that Oswald never fired a shot the day the president was killed in Dallas.
Zach noted that video in an e-mail. (Thank you, Zach.)
This is C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot" for today:
Monday, Marcb 28, 2022. Hollywood celebrates and elevates a homophobe while LGBTQs in Iraq remain targeted.
Let's start with the Academy Awards. "What about the suffering of the Iraqi people" went up last night and per those attending three after parties last night, I buried the lead.
A 53-year0old man went onstage and physically assaulted a comedian in the midst of a live broadcast Some are making jokes -- like how Judi Dench and Helen Mirren will show up surrounded by bodyguards prepared to throw down. A director -- who's African-American and insisted that made the remark not racist --p=put it bluntly, "It's the Academy Awards not The Source Awards." Others felt Jada needed to put her sub-cuck on a leash when she takes him out in public since he can't control himmself.
It shouldn't have to be said but it apparently does: Your wife being a joke in a sereis of one liners does not require your comment. If you want to comment, you can say it after the ceremony. To interrupt a live ceremony is appallling and to do so with your hands is outrageous.
"Never in the history of the Acadmy" was the phrase I kept hearing. Over and over. (Which is why so many insisted I buried the lead in last night's post.) It was outrageous and I noted it. (I did not disclose that I knew Chris Rock -- the man Little Willie Smith attacked -- and that I consider Chris a friend. Little Willie's tantrum was not the focus of the post and I didn't think it needed to be noted. Little Cuck Willie is now the focus and I am disclosing regarding Chris Rock.)
This was the 94th annual Academy Awards and never before has this happened.
Will Smith's actions were outrageous and he needs to apologize for them.
He disgraced himself but who cares about that? He's a half-assed actor who can't deliver at the box office anymore and he did serious damage to himself within the industry last night. But this is a disgrace to the industry and not the face we try to present to the world. It was also offensive in that a middle-aged man resorted to violence when he was unhappy with a joke. And he did it on an awards show, he did it on a show that's supposed to celebrate the best of the industry.
His garbage should have him run out of the industry.
He won the award on the same night, Best Actor.
It's the least important actng award the Academy gives out. And it was obvious he was going to win it two weeks ago which is why Ava and I noted:
Excellence isn't rewarded. It's certainly not rewarded at the Academy
Awards. The only exceptions being Best Actress and Best Supporting
Actress in a good year. The statues are not handed out to the
deserving. Men -- in both male actor categories -- win because Academy
members liked the films they were in and because the Academy thinks it
makes them look good. That's why there are so few memorable
performances among the winners for Best Actor.
Anthony Hopkins for his performance in THE SILENCE OF THE LAMBS is a rare win. More often it's pedestrian performances in pedestrian films that the Academy thinks hugging will make them look good.
Actors win Academy awards are winning based upon what Academy members feel about the film they appeared in.
Women win for acting. They have to go all out, most years. While men can be stoic (stiff) onscreen but still win.
Bette Davis, Jane Fonda, women like that have to really deliver. They have to dig deep and serve it up onscreen.
If you doubt it, think about Sally Kirkland. ANNA (1987) was one of the worst films ever. But Sally did deliver in it and she got a Best Actress nomination. You won't catch any actor -- even if he delivers -- from a third-rate, C-picture getting nominated. And actors are rarely asked to deliver any real range when being handed an Academy Award. Think about that when they're handing out Oscars at the end of the month.
And think about the fact that when a woman wins she has delivered. If she wins twice -- for example, Jane Fonda, Bette Davis, Jessica Lange, Hillary Swank, Olivia de Havillind, etc -- then she's really something. That list would include Renée Zellweger
played a dad that the industry wanted to glorify. He gave a lousy
performance. An Academy Award winning actress insisted to me that he
was "overdue" for the award. And the homophobia that he's displayed for
years? "It's not important." Really? Then why don't you say it
publily. Say that publicly. You've got one foot in the grave and will
be dead before the 2020s draw to a close. Say it. Your career is
over. Say it. And grasp that the minute you say it out loud, your
death does not mean people say, "Oh, too bad. I really liked her." No,
instead, they say, "THat ______. F((k her and may she rot in hell."
She was one of those whining a few years back that Will hadn't been nominated. This is a very obvious blind item, you should be able to figure her out and maybe then grasp that those idiots who are applauding her for pro-gay statements in the 70s need to stop praising her.
It was more important, she insisted, that Will win because of his race than that Will be held accountable for his homophobia.
She doesn't agree now. She was loudly called out at a party last night when she barged into a conversation a group of us were having and she tried to 'correct' me. She was told she was a dumb bitch -- kind of agree right now -- and that some of us actually have an education -- true -- so maybe she should just shut her damn mouth. Hmm.
I see she took the message to heart because she hasn't Tweeted her congrats to Will or, honestly, anything at all. And she loves her Twitter. But maybe she's thinking this week's big event won't have the turnout she needs if she's promoting a homophobe?
I hae no idea.
But before the ceremony started last night, a line had already been drawn in the industry between those of us who support equality and those who support homophobia.
Supporitng Will is supporting homophobia. He has never apologized for all of his As Ava and I wrote in February:
Self-hatred's long been used to overlook the homophobia of some actors -- Will Smith, rumors insist, is gay. We really don't care if he's gay or straight or bi, we just think he owes everyone a public apology.
ZOOM and the pandemic have meant that we do our various conversations over the internet. No more are we able to go onto campuses or into union halls or whatever. We miss the face to face, honestly. But what we have on the plus side, the up -- as Mike would say, is that we've been able to expand the groups we speak to since we aren't traveling. And one of the groups we've added a lot more of is LGBTQ groups.
Things are better for young LGBTQs than they were for previous generations but things are still not where they should be. As we've enlarged the scope of our groups, a friend who is a therapist asked if we'd mind speaking with her group. They were nine gay men, in their forties, who basically did not feel listened by society or represented in the media. Would we speak to them? Being told that, we were dying to speak to them. And we were not disappointed.
There's a story that's not really told and they brought it to the forefront (as have other gay male groups we've spoken to since). We thank them for that. Like them, we marvel over how this part of the story really isn't told.
Being gay is easier than it used to be. 20 years ago, or even just ten in some places, there was so much harassment. We have honestly advised men who've shared their experiences to consider filing lawsuits. And we're not joking and we're not litigious people.
Films and TV shows thought they were being 'sympathetic' and true telling of the gay kid in school who got picked on by some bully. That's the story we've heard rejected over and over for the last five months from many different groups of gay men.
No, what we've heard is about how the whole school system was after you. That was the bully, yes. And there was usually a coach -- at least one -- and a principal egging them on. Adults were around and they not only were not protecting these children, they were actively participating in harassing them.
And it was accepted back then. It was 'normal.' That's in part due to a point we've made here forever: the socialization of males by this society is one of bullying. Toughen up, don't cry. You can see it, as we've often noted, in two films from the 80s. In both, two characters join the military and are treated horribly. In the one about the male, AN OFFICER AND A GENTLEMAN, Richard Gere is harassed by his drill sergeant (Louis Gossett Jr.) and, instead of rejecting that harassment, we are supposed to applaud it and feel all warm inside. In the other, PRIVATE BENJAMIN, Goldie Hawn and her team get their revenge on the harasser (Eileen Brennan). The male socialization is bullying in this society. That's not acceptable (even with the well known existence of 'mean girls') when it comes to females.
So sometimes, a gay man will offer that maybe the principal was trying to help him by bullying him, by mocking him in front of other students, by sneering at him and calling him a "fairy" and worse in front of the whole school assembly.
We say f**k that. We say sue those assholes. And what about statute of limitations? Who cares. File the paperwork, have it thrown of court as a result of being beyond some time limit. But in between the those two moments, let that elderly abuser know that the world knows what he or she did. And let them sweat it and let them be haunted by it.
They have made no effort to find these former children and apologize to them. So f**k them. To lead a school into targeting a young boy because he's gay? You were an adult. There's no excuse for what you did. And if the court of law can't put you on notice, the court of public opinion certainly can.
NETFLIX is offering AMEND: THE FIGHT FOR AMERICA -- a documentary series. Episode five is "Love." Yes, what the world needs now. Professor Martha S. Jones talks about the impact of LOVING V VIRGINIA -- a breakthrough case that especially impacted her life because her mixed race parents married years before the verdict in LOVING.
This landmark case gets far less attention than it deserves. We've noted it many times such as in 2008:
Loving v. Virginia was a breakthrough, a legal landmark, for
the United States. In a debate, Barack Obama was asked, "Senator Obama,
the laws banning interracial marriage in the United States were ruled
unconstitutional in 1967. What is the difference between a ban on
interracial marriage and a ban on gay marriage?" Obama mouthed a lot of
nonsense about 'equality' and then went on to state it's a decision for
different denominations to make. There should have been a gasp heard
round the country.
Barack is a lawyer, a trained legal mind. Though we find it difficult to believe he's never studied Loving v. Viriginia (as difficult to believe as Clarence Thomas' Senate testimony that he'd never thought about Roe v. Wade), we'll allow that maybe it fell into some gap in his education. But as a trained legal mind, he does grasp court billing. "v. Virginia" means versus state. Not versus a denomination.
In that historic case, the Supreme Court of the United States found the laws of the state of Virginia to be unconstitutional and illegal. That finding meant that all states could no longer refuse to issue marriage certificates to couples of different races. Obama's weak-ass response should have been considered weak ass. (John Edwards also embarrassed himself in that debate noting he was against "gay marriage" and "I do not" support it leading us to shout back at the screen, "Gee, John, we weren't aware you were being inundated with proposals!") But it was also dishonest. A law student, forget the former president of the Harvard Law Review, grasps that Loving v. Virginia was not about whether "denominations" could make a decision, it was about what the government could do. To provide perspective, imagine the issue was illegal search and seizure on the part of the government (forbidden by the Constitution) and Obama had responded, "I think it's up to denominations." The government was discriminating and the Supreme Court stood up for the rights of all. A trained legal mind should grasp that. If Obama didn't, he's either not much of a student or he's a really bad liar.
It's good that the episode starts off with LOVING because that is at the root of equality. And other cases are cited including LAWRENCE v TEXAS and the appalling BOWERS v HARDWICK. Episode five revolves around the importance of The Fourteenth Amendment and how its importance and relevance leads to the historic OBERGEFELL v HODGES.
We applaud much about the documentary but episode five, for all of its applause, also has to answer for something.
Will Smith produced the series. And probably should have stayed off camera. Why doesn't Will have an Oscar. Well, Jada, it's partly because he's not really an actor -- don't confuse stardom with acting ability -- but it's also because of his hateful past which includes a lot of homophobia and Academy voters just don't embrace hatred and intolerance.
In episode five, Will declares of Cincinnati in the 70s, "The message to its LGBTQ citizens is be quiet, stay hidden or get out." Will, could of course, admit that his message to the LGBTQ citizens has been be quiet, stay hidden, get out or be mocked and demonized.
That is what he has done.
Some try to argue that he's gay or bi in real life. He presents as straight. Take him at his word. But even if he were choking a cock every night, that doesn't justify the damage he has done.
Early on, he told MOVIELINE that the reason he wouldn't kiss Anthony Michael Hall in SIX DEGREES OF SEPARATION -- as required in the script and has had happened when it was a stage production without Will Smith -- was because Denzel Washington told him not to.
Did Denzel tell him that?
We have no idea. And the reason we have no idea is because Denzel, a movie star for decades, didn't go public. If he was against gay people or playing one or whatever, he had the brains not to say so publicly.
Will didn't. And this is throughout his career.
Is he homophobic, we wanna know.
How can we tell what's in his soul?
It's in his recordings: "All the filthy stinking nasty people be quiet. All the homeboys that
got AIDS be quiet. All the girls out there that don't like guys be
quiet." It's in his films -- such as HANCOCK, and BAD BOYS 2. It's in his red carpet encounters.**
Will gave interviews about how ''gross'' two men kissing were. He's done that since, 1991.
We can't tell what's in his soul, we can only register the meaning of his statements and his actions.
Now he just wants to act like it never happened? Like decades of homophobia from a one-time action-movie star didn't have an impact:?
His comments egged on others as much as any teacher or principal at a school.
He needs to publicly apologize. It's that simple.
That's whoo the Academy elected to honor last night. And before he even got handed the award, he'd proven all of us opposed to be accurate. He is an embarrassment.
His actions were outrageous. His toxic behavior is not going to fade away. It is part of his legacy forever more.
It was a disgraceful moment when Will interrupted a live brodcast to physically attack Chris Rock. But it's what all of us warned you about. He's trash. And you don't give trash awards.
The good news is that his stunt resulted in mass revulsion within the industry. He should have been held accountable for his homophobia. Instead, he'll be held accountable for being low class and having no manners. Whatever hurts a homophobe? I'll take it as a win. Gladly.
LGBT+ people in Iraq are being hunted, abducted, tortured, raped and murdered by armed groups, including police and security forces, according to a new report.
The report from Human Rights Watch, supported by Iraqi LGBT+ rights group IraQueer, included 54 interviews with LGBT+ Iraqi people, as well as with six witnesses to killings and abductions by armed groups of LGBT+ people.
According to the report, attacks on LGBT+ people were committed by police, government security forces, and state-sponsored armed groups dedicated to hunting down and attacking queer Iraqis.
Of the 54 people interviewed, the report recorded eight cases of abductions, eight cases of attempted murder, four extrajudicial killings, 27 cases of sexual violence —including gang rape — 45 cases of threats to rape and kill, and 42 cases of online targeting by individuals who identified themselves as members of armed groups against LGBT+ people in Iraq.
The need to call out homophobia is greater than ever before. And if you don't grasp that, it's because you're too busy 'caring' about (lip service) whatever the corporate news tells you to care about. Generally speaking, when it's something saturated on corporate news, it's not really anything in need of amplifying. MIDDLE EAST EYE notes:
One 31-year-old Iraqi transgender woman told HRW and IraQueer that she was returning home from work last February when six men in a Hummer stopped her next to a rubbish tip in Baghdad. “They pulled out a razor blade and a screwdriver and poked and cut me all over, especially my ass, crotch, and thighs,” she said.
“They sliced me up and poured around five litres of gasoline all over my body and face and set me alight.”
A 27-year-old gay man from the capital described how he watched four men from an armed group torture his boyfriend in May 2020.
“Then they shot him five times,” he said.
The 54 LGBTQ+ people interviewed said that while they were in detention they were routinely denied food, water, medical care and access to their families.
One 27-year-old gay man from Baghdad described how his boyfriend was tortured by four members of an armed group in front of him in May 2020. “Then they shot him five times,” he said.
In eight cases, abuses by armed groups and police, including arbitrary arrest and sexual harassment, were against children as young as 15. Many of those attacked were able to identify the armed group responsible. The groups implicated in the most serious abuses are Asa’ib Ahl al-Haqq, Atabat Mobilization, Badr Organization, Kata’ib Hezbollah, Raba Allah Group, and Saraya al-Salam.
The people interviewed described arrests and routine violence from security officials, who verbally and physically assault them, and arbitrarily arrest and detain them, often without a legal basis.
LGBT people reported abuses during detention including being denied food and water, or the right to contact a lawyer or family members, or get medical care. They said the police sexually assaulted them and physically abused them and forced them to sign pledges stating that they had not been abused.
Last night, the Academy had the chance to do the right thing and not shake hands with homophobia. They didn't do the right thing. And the man they awarded made a mockery of the ceremony and disgraced himself and the Academy. Excuse me, if I don't shed tears for the industry. It got exactly the disrespect it deserved. Here's hoping the ratings were very low.
Let's wind down with Cindy Sheehan on THE BITTER TRUTH.
Kat's "Kat's Korner: Joss Stone and Judy Collins crash and burn" went up Sunday morning. The following sites updated: