Issue 23.04: 2016 Primaries

By : Jake Stevens
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#wearewithher: Watermark’s presidential primary endorsement along with some other candidates and races to watch in the coming months, local news, celebrity interviews, and much, much more!

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Metro purchases St. Pete location, solidifies permanent home

By : Jeremy Williams
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Metro Wellness & Community Center, in partnership with Community AIDS Network (CAN), has purchased its St. Petersburg location after a seven-month legal battle.

The previous owner attempted to sell the building last summer out from underneath Metro, even attempting to have the clinic evicted. Metro was forced to file for an injunction and fight it out in court.

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Pacquiao apologizes for homophobic statements after being dropped from Nike deal

By : Wire Report
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Manila, Philippines (AP) – Boxing star and Philippine Senate candidate Manny Pacquiao apologized for denouncing people in gay relationships as “worse than animals” but said he stood by his opposition to same-sex marriage.

Fellow Filipino celebrities were among those criticizing his remarks, made when a TV network asked candidates about their views on same-sex marriage.

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Filipino boxer and senatorial candidate Manny Pacquiao says gays “worse than animals”

By : Wire Report
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Manila, Philippines (AP) – World boxing star Manny Pacquiao has drawn an outcry in the Philippines after publicly denouncing people in same-sex relationships as “worse than animals.”

Pacquiao, a high school dropout from a poverty-stricken rural family who went on to become a boxing legend, made the remark when he and other Philippine senatorial candidates were asked by the local TV5 network about their views on same-sex marriage.

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Screened Out – Steve Jobs

By : Stephen Miller
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Michael Fassbender, Kate Winslet, Seth Rogen, Jeff Daniels

Steve Jobs is available on DVD and some streaming services Feb. 16.

Like many Steve Jobs inventions, this excellent movie flopped. Why? How?

It isn’t the subject; Steve Jobs is one of the most intriguing persons of the last century. The film’s production team includes writer Aaron Sorkin (The Social Network, The West Wing), director Danny Boyle (Slumdog Millionaire, Trainspotting), and Oscar nominees Michael Fassbender and Kate Winslet. When this brilliant three-act movie opened in early October last year, the critical praise was high, and there was a lot of Awards buzz.

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CBS entertainment chief vows more primetime diversity

By : Wire Report
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PASADENA, Calif. (AP) – CBS is committed to increasing the diversity of its prime-time series, the network’s new programming chief said, offering himself as evidence.

“I’m just a gay guy from Indiana who doesn’t play basketball, but now I’m the entertainment president of CBS,” said Glenn Geller, who was promoted to the job last fall.

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The Real O’Neals loosely based on life of Dan Savage

By : Wire Report
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Pasadena (AP) – A producer for ABC’s new sitcom “The Real O’Neals” wanted a gay actor for the role of a teenager who comes out to his shocked Catholic family but was prevented by a law designed to protect gays and lesbians from asking those auditioning about their sexual orientation.

“It was very important to me and I was in a panic,” said Todd Holland, an executive producer for the series that debuts March 2 before settling into a regular Tuesday time slot a week later.

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Why does the Holy Land Experience keep getting away with pretending to be a church?

By : Michael Wanzie
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Michael Wanzie

Michael Wanzie

It is no secret that about three weeks ago I personally placed the phone call to the Orlando Sentinel informing the publication that Holy Land Experience Theme Park (HLE) had painted a mural on the retaining walls which support the I-4 west-bound exit onto Conroy Road boarding HLE property. The mural consists of an angel and a scroll that is rolled open to reveal a watery-blue backdrop meant to blend in with HLE park theming. I encouraged Sentinel journalists to investigate whether or not HLE theme park sought permission from the City of Orlando and/or the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) to create the mural.

I have legitimate concerns when I see a business defacing public property for the purposes of enhancing a private, profit-making enterprise. The powers that be at Trinity Broadcasting Network (the the money-bilking machine that owns the park) can carry on all they want about how their business is not a theme park but rather a church or a museum – thus justifying the tax-free status reprehensibly bestowed upon the theme park by Republican lawmakers in Tallahassee – but let’s be real here; on its web site, HLE lists its $50 entrance fee as a “Gate Price.” One passes through a turnstile to enter an attraction overflowing with gift shops. The park presents a nighttime fountain and light show, and HLE is currently in the process of installing a Putt Putt-style 9-hole mini golf course. HLE recently announced the repurposing of their “Smile of A Child” interactive children’s playground into the (get this) “The Trin-i-Tee Miniature Golf Course” at the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions Expo.

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Jamaican activist challenges anti-sodomy laws in court

By : Wire Report
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Kingston, Jamaica (AP) – A Jamaican gay rights activist has brought a rare legal challenge to the Caribbean island’s anti-sodomy laws that criminalize consensual sex between men, according to the Canadian advocacy group he works for.

Gay rights campaigner and attorney Maurice Tomlinson recently filed a claim in Jamaica’s Supreme Court challenging the constitutionality of the rarely-used 1864 laws that ban anal sex and anything interpreted as “gross indecency” between men.

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Obama’s marriage equality celebration, Caitlyn Jenner’s introduction make top 10 tweets of 2015

By : Wire Report
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San Francisco (AP) — Messages of love and gratitude shared by the boy band One Direction topped Twitter’s charts this year, eclipsing President Barack Obama’s celebration of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision legalizing gay marriage.

One Direction members accounted for half of the 10 most recirculated tweets, including the three most popular.

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Rubio would overturn President Obama’s anti-discrimination policies

By : Jamie Hyman
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Florida Senator and presidential hopeful Marco Rubio would turn the clock back on President Obama’s LGBT protections if elected U.S. President.

In an interview with the Christian Broadcasting Network, Rubio says he would reverse administrative decisions, such as the executive order that bars government contractors from discriminating against LGBTs, because those protections mean the business owners are “compelled to sin” by anti-discrimination policies that force them to “violate the tenets of their faith.”

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Jacksonville advocacy group starts campaign to fight spread of HIV/AIDS in youth

By : Staff Report
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cure HIV AIDS red ribbon

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A Jacksonville LGBT advocacy group launched a $1-million campaign to combat the rapid spread of HIV/AIDS in Northeast Florida youth Nov. 30.

The Jacksonville Area Sexual Minority Youth Network (JASYMN) announced AIDSFreeJax, a three-year campaign which looks to match the $500,000 donation by the Delores Barr Weaver Fund, to get more young people HIV education and testing.

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